Red Sox and Yankees Latest to C***block Cubs

The Cubs went from hording minor league pitchers to hording minor league shortstops when they hired Tim Wilken as scouting director. One target was Cuban defector Jose Iglesias, who defected back in July of 2008 when the team was in Edmonton and then signed with the Boston Red Sox in September of 2009 for 4/8.25M. He played some in the Arizona Fall League and his defense is considered "special", but at just 20 years old he still has some time to grow into his bat.

Rumor has it though that the Cubs were actually the top bidders, but Iglesias chose the Red Sox because they were his favorite team growing up. Curse you childhood allegiances!!!

For what it's worth, BP has him as 3-star prospect and #6 in the Red Sox stocked system.

Then there's the tale of Chan Ho Park, who has been rumored as a target for the Cubs for most of the offseason. The reports from Bruce Levine were that he wanted $3-4M and it was too high for the Cubs. The reality is that the Yankees came knocking and they got the rings(translated from The Korea Times).

"I was deliberating on the Chicago Cubs and the Yankees, but their history and championship contention resulted in me picking the Yankees,'' Park said. "Until last night, I was leaning toward the Cubs."

Park, who said he agreed to a one-year, $1.2 million deal, said the Cubs offered him a chance to compete for a berth in the starting rotation. With the Yankees, he will come out of the bullpen, as he did last season with the Phillies.

"I wanted to play for a champion-caliber team this year again," Park said. "I am not certain how much longer I will play baseball, but it will be huge experience and memory to play with the Yankees.''

C'est la vie.

If the Cubs are looking for another guy that could start or move to the pen(a swingman as they call it), there's Glendon Rusch (chuckle), John Smoltz (don't see it), and that's about it. It might mean they try to talk to Kiko Calero again as well and just go for a reliever.

*Thanks to "Sweet Lou" for the link on Iglesias spurning the Cubs.

Comments

rumor has smoltz waiting as long as mid-season until he can find a rotation spot to fit into with a contender or someone hard up willing to pay $$.

well at least bullpens in Oakland...

http://twitter.com/susanslusser/status/948698...

doh...poor rookie. enjoy the squatting fresh meat.

whatever...we got carlos silva and 2-3m bucks. sucks to be them.

Just so I'm clear, you don't like the trade?

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Now that's much more clear.

Bradley, suspended the last two weeks of last season with the Cubs, wasn't asked any questions about his turbulent one-year stay in Chicago.

That's some real hard-hitting reporting there by Bob Nightengale

read the Cubs intro at the bookstore...excellent stuff if you come by it.

reds finally sign j.gomes, fwiw...no details minor/major deal.

http://twitter.com/CarrieMuskat/status/948998...

Alfonso Soriano showed up at #cubs camp, and says he doesn't feel 100 percent yet but that's because he hasn't tested his knee. We'll see

Soriano to be harvested for parts in order to feed Nady's growing surgery addiction? I've actually got a friend who would happily solder Soriano's right arm onto Nady, for a very reasonable price to. Call me, Cubs training staff.

Soriano had the scope on the knee five months ago. Is it unreasonable to expect him to be more than "80-85%" this long after the surgery?

Is there a doctor in the house?

Is it unreasonable to expect him to be more than "80-85%" this long after the surgery?
---
Hard to say what 85% better really means. Need to see what he can't do regarding discomfort while running, rounding bases, sliding, signature hop-catching, etc. His diagnosis was patellofemoral (either side the kneecap's articulation ) chondromalacia, so it's certainly possible for him to have some mild residual symptoms even this far out (Sept 15th, 2009 surgery means 5 months). Most things that resolve are better by 6 months though if they are going to.

http://mlb.mlb.com/news/article.jsp?ymd=20090...

He'll be ready to go in June.

so your saying that Phil Rogers was right? Oops, that was his prediction for Lilly.

Like making a deadline trade!

Given that Derrek Lee will be a free agent after the 2010 season, if Soriano’s knee problems persist, should Soriano move to first base in 2011?

Not unless he returns to an .850 OPS and can field acceptably at first. Those are both big ifs, I think.

I believe that's the plan. Unless the NL adopts the DH or he can be traded to AL team(haha)he will be a liability in left and get injured there more often.

makes sense...like him or not it's probably better he not patrol LF too much longer.

cubs are probably stuck for him a while unless the cubs want barry zito or something equally as retarded.

I'd trade him for Zito in about two seconds. Except for maybe Vernon Wells, I'd trade Soriano for almost anyone at this point.

Except Milton Bradley, because he'd ruin the Cubs, right?

Glendon Rusch? Thanks for the laugh, TCR.

And 4/8 for some 20 year old Cuban douchebag, okay. That doesn't hurt my feelings much that the Cubs missed out.

Cuban douchebag?

wth?

Cubs were the top bidder... implying they actually offered more. *Sigh*

I'd rather see us hoarding catchers. If they hit you've got a gem. If they have an accurate powerful arm you can add third base or OF to their resume. And if they are good receivers first base is usually a given.

Best of all, if they fail to hit you can convert them to pitchers.

Carlos Marmol agrees.

"Primarily, which I've never said in the past, is I want to have fun," Bradley said. "In the past I've always just wanted to win. I didn't care whether I liked it or not as long as I was winning, because that's all it's about for me. But at this point in my career I want to enjoy it. I want to have fun. I've been fortunate enough to play on a lot of teams and met a lot of guys, so I've built some lasting relationships. That's stuff that I take to heart."

He wants to have fun this year. The Cubs want to have fun this year. Looks like a perfect fit to me.

carlos silva is a lot of fun. so is downgrading your batting in order to pick him up.

win/win.

"I'm just here to play baseball,'' he said. "When everything lines up, I can play pretty good. Hopefully, there are no distractions."

"If people allow you to be yourself, and not steer any thoughts in any direction, everything will be fine.''

The problem with Bradley hoping there are no distractions is that he brings his distractions with him. I sure hope no one steers "any thoughts in any direction," whatever that means.

Crunch, your undying love for Bradley is admirable, but I have to believe that the Cubs are better off without him, regardless of his impressive OBP.

"Crunch, your undying love for Bradley is admirable"

you countering any argument with that shows you have no respect for the person you're talking to.

ps- carlos silva.

I didn't realize I was countering an argument. I was simply pointing out how you come to Bradley's defense at every opportunity. However, what I wrote does sound snarkier than I meant it.

As for Carlos Silva, he's a non-issue. He's simply the current incarnation of Hendry's bad decision to sign Bradley. Silva could be released tomorrow and it won't change anything. Trading for him was just a little better than outright releasing Bradley. Being rid of Bradley was the important thing, not who they got for him.

"I was simply pointing out how you come to Bradley's defense at every opportunity."

nah, i dont...and i didn't come to bradley's defense, either.

we have carlos silva and paid more on top of that to replace bradley with byrd. that's just awesome to me.

That's true. It's not a good situation. But it's a better situation than having Bradley on the team.

As he cheers the Cubs on to an 84 win season...

Well, that would be one more than last year...

Zing...

Sorry, I am in the camp that wants the Cubs to win the World Series.

So having Bradley on the Chicago Cubs 2010 team puts them over the top into the World Series contender category? Sounds like a stretch.

Would having Bradley on the team give the Cubs a better chance to win 92 games over having Byrd and Silva? Yes. Would it also give them a greater chance of having a 76 wins? Probably.

Bradley 2009: .257/.378/.397, career: .277/.371/.450

Byrd 2009: .283/.329/.479, career: .279/.340/.422

Meh...For not having to hear about how unfair life is for poor, misunderstood Milton Fucking Bradley all season...it's not that big of a drop off.

God...it's like Bradley put up some huge numbers for the Cubs...not the crappy ones that he did. Except, of course, OBP,he's the KING OF OBP...and sucked at everything else.

Down grading the batting order? Are you serious crunch? How will we ever replace his 61 runs, 12 HR's and 40 RBI!?!?!?!? OMG WERE DOOMED!!!! Doomed I say!

How could we ever project those numbers this season when they aren't anywhere close to the numbers he put up in the last 5 years?!?!?! OMG WE'RE DOOMED!

If Bradley had put up those numbers last season, istead of the crapfest he provided...he might still be here.....OMG WE"RE DOOMED!!!

Really? That's why he got traded? Then why did we keep Fontenot, Soto, and Soriano?

Soriano has a million more years under contract, Soto is still cheap, Fontenot is still cheap. None of the 3 brought as much negative attention to themselves as Bradley did.

We all know that Bradley was traded more for his attitude than his play...but his play wasn't so great either.

Ah, so it wasn't what you said the first time. Cool, then.

Either way, Milton is one of two things: broken forever or had 1 bad year. I'm sure Mike thinks it's the former. I think some of the rest of us think it's the latter.

Lol....ok Wes. Put me in the "it's not worth keeping a douchebag around, hoping he will be a decent player rather than sucking.." camp.

Do you really think MB would have been as big of an issue if he hit .290/.390/.450?

Christ...it's like the Cubs gave away Willie Mays or something...

Christ...it's like the cubs gained carlos silva and paid a few million dollars extra to replace bradley with a bat that has less potential and proof of potential.

Hey...it's not like I love the idea of taking on Carlos Silva, or think that Marlon Byrd is going to be an all-star in CF. But hey, the Cubs obviously thought that keeping MB around would be a mistake. They paid for it, as you often do with mistakes.

I have said all along that signing Bradley was a mistake.

That doesn't mean the solution to the mistake is making the team even worse for the purpose of good PR. To me, that's effectively what Hendry has done.

They made a mistake in signing him. They got rid of him. If they give Silva 25 starts and Byrd sucks, it'll blow up in the Cubs face.

I'm hoping that Silva ends up on the 60-day DL, and that Byrd can at least match his career averages. If this happens, the trade will work in the Cubs favor. Mishandled or no, a mistake or no, the MB era is over, and we can all move on.

the "MB-era" has little to do with a pitcher that can't pitch and a guy with less upside who cost more money on top of it all to pick up...except that's how the MB-era ended for the cubs.

we have moved on...now we're in our new house going "ew."

Crunch, I will just say we agree to disagree.

The Cubs are better off without Bradley than with him. I don't like signing Byrd for 3 seasons, but he will be better this year than Bradley was last year, and he will allow Fukudome to stay in RF, which is his better position. It's a sunk cost, I just don't get the gnashing of teeth over losing a guy who was a jackass, and who didn't play all that well.

One thing I think we can all agree on is that all of this disagreement about Bradley doesn't change anything that happened last year. I choose to spend my energy looking ahead with great anticipation to Spring Training and the 2010 season. We have Silva now and we are all expecting him to fail - if he does, no shock there, but maybe he will give us more than we expect. All we can do is sit back and watch...

OMG WE'RE DOOMED!!!!!

Bradley = no pop. 17 doubles, 12 homers in 473 plate appearances. Throw in a triple and it's 30 XBH in 473 PA, or 1 XBH every 15.77 PA.

Other Cubs: Lee, 1 XBH per 8.42 PA (615/73). Fox, 10.48 (241/23). Hoffpauir, 11.17 (257/23). Soriano, 11.35 (522/46). Ramirez, 11.4 (342/30). Soto, 12.54 (389/31). Fontenot 12.7 (419/33).

Slightly more pop than Bradley: Blanco, 15.33 (138/9)

Weaker than Bradley: Hill, 17.75 (284/16). Theriot, 21.16 (677/32).

Cue comment from crunch on Bradley's doubles power in 3...2...1...

"A good decision is based on knowledge and not on numbers." Plato

That's really amazing that Bradley didn't hit any doubles or HR's while walking.... he's probably the first player in ML history to not get a HBP and a HR in the same PA.

It's called ISO, it's been widely used for 15 years.

If there's ever been a thing more needlessly repeated than "Milton Bradley didn't hit well in 2009" on this board, I'd be surprised. Everyone agrees he didn't hit well, why are people so desperate to keep saying it like it's a new point?

Aram was the cleanup hitter and only had 65 RBI's - let's repeat that 1000 times before the season starts.

Ok...let's repeat that TRN:

Ramirez 2009: 82 games, 65 RBI
Bradley 2009: 124 games, 40 RBI

Ramirez RISP: 103 PA, .425/.515/.563, 2HR, 46 RBI
Bradley RISP 115 PA, .205/.383/.318, 2HR, 24 RBI

Please make a sillier comment if possible. Ramirez dislocated his shoulder and missed basically May and June, and still produced more than a certain RF who will not be named as to not offend his fan club.

Is there a retarded Cub Fan of the year award you're up for or something?

Me : If there's ever been a thing more needlessly repeated than "Milton Bradley didn't hit well in 2009" on this board?

2010RCFotY:
Bradley RISP 115 PA, .205/.383/.318, 2HR, 24 RBI

Lol...comparing Ramirez to Bradley, you have won the award in perpetuity TRN...

I didn't compare them, aptly named DB.

I think you're missing the point that some of Bradley's walks could have been doubles and home runs if he had not been so intent on getting to ball four.

Von Joshua's rule #1 was don't take fastballs in the strike zone. That certainly wasn't Bradley's rule 1. No wonder those guys hated each other.

It was an unfair fight. Bradley landed on his feet with Seattle, accompanied by his millions, and Joshua was busted back to the minors.

Yes, Von Joshua was "busted back to the minors" where he had been hired to coach until and where he's had success coaching young players. If you're gonna say a hitting coach got run out of town, stick with Perry.

Von Joshua's rule #1 was don't take fastballs in the strike zone.

if that is indeed his rule, sending him to Triple A was getting off easy.

It was something like that. Here's the reference:

“It’s a twofold. You like to see them work the count, but if they groove that fastball, square it up. A lot of guys will say, ‘It was on the outer third of the plate.’ Well, square it up to the opposite field and try and go the other way. It’s still the fastball. I cannot stand to see guys take a fastball for a strike.”

yes, there's some truth to that, but not everyone is a good fastball hitter and something that hugs the corners is not a pitch you need to be swinging at. Some guys are guess hitters, some guys wait for mistakes and some guys look for their pitch in their location early in the count.

If he's irked by guys taking outside fastballs, especially early in the count, he belongs in the minors and preferably someone else's organization. A blanket methodology like that is not the way to work with major league hitters.

That quote makes me want him fired. It's pretty much the definition of "those who can't do, teach". Maybe Joshua forgot it since he put up that 91 career OPS+ but you don't get a heckuva a lot of time to decide where a pitch is and whether to swing at it. Guys have trouble with pitch recognition, and he wants hitters to not lock in on a section of the strike zone, but just swing at what they think is going to be a fastball strike, regardless of location.

fwiw, v.joshua is one of the best video-to-mechanics guys out there.

how he communicates it to players, though...i dunno.

either way, he's well respected by how much he can get out of video, f'sure.

http://blogs.dailyherald.com/node/3493

Had a chance to talk baseball with reliever Jeff Stevens this morning, too. He had Greg Maddux standing behind him yesterday in the cage as he threw. He said in the past, he might throw 10 fastballs in a row or 10 sliders in a row. He said Maddux told him, "You don't pitch that way in a game," and to mix it up while he was throwing.

Maddux has been hard at work here, helping pitching coach Larry Rothschild. Also this morning, Maddux was sitting in the clubhouse with catching prospect Steve Clevenger, pointing out how to best pick up pitchers' arm slots. Good stuff. The kids ought to listen.

Rothschild oughta be listening too!

You can't put a value on the advice he could give these guys.

It must have been Angel Guzman's day to face the media, as both the Sun Times and Trib carried storeis of the extreme emotional trauma he has endured since his brother's death.

http://www.suntimes.com/sports/baseball/cubs/...

Perhaps that is one reason that Hendry had interest in Park, because it sure looks like Guzman is struggling badly, at least emotionally.

Kind of wonder how the Zambrano-Guzman relationship is these days. Not too long ago Zambrano wondered whether Guzman should stop describing him as a big brother to the press.

Can you blame Park for choosing the Yankees? He cost a nice portion of the money Hendry saved by not giving into Theriot. Caught a tail end of an interview with Rich Hill on St. Louis radio station. He was talking about how excited he was to be back in the NL where he can hit. I do not recall Rich having an exceptional swing at the plate. It will be interesting to see if this guy can redevelop himself. The Cardinals rotation is uncertain once you get past the first two (guess the Cubs are in the same boat too) Lohse, Penny, and (Garcia, Hawksworth, McCellan, or Hill) is what it looks like.

if you're on the ass end of your career and you want to win...going to the team with the 200m payroll is a nice option for most players if they can get the invitation.

boston is looking better than the yanks to a lot and some people believe TB has the upper hand over BOS and the yanks...but that 200 million talent (though almost all of it getting old) is pretty damn impressive.

Rich Harden piece, "Goal is Throwing Fewer Innings and Fewer Pitches" ESPN

http://sports.espn.go.com/dallas/mlb/columns/...

"If he's thrown 88 pitches but they are stressful pitches, we'll get him out of there," said Washington

...ummm

uh. hmmm.

this should be interesting. 80+ isn't uncommon territory for him in the 4th/5th.

If 88 pitches, but they are stressful pitches, we'll get him out of there". Almost Dave Wannstedtesque train of thought. I remember Dave's analysis of Curtis Enis. "Curtis may have only had 25 yards, but he earned every one of those yards".

I thought Nolan Ryan wanted starters to work longer into games?

Canadians are exempt from the rules

HAHA! That's right. And, he also gets a nice improvement on his US dollars, if paid in US funds, of course. Although certainly not as good as it was a few years ago.

Damn metric system

Johnny "one note" Damon 2009

_________Left Center Right
Slug _%__ .350 .325 .816
HR__ _____0__ _0__ 24
Iso. Power .057 .048 .422

http://insider.espn.go.com/espn/blog/index?en...

Except for maybe Vernon Wells
---
Slamma-Jamarillo couldn't fix Wells?

Count me in the lucky we missed out on Chan camp. Was Ismael Valdez not available? Park has consistently been one of the worst pitchers in MLB for a decade now. It reeked of doing something "Just cause" and filling out Hendry's allocated budget.

I'd be absolutely SHOCKED if he has an Era under 5 in New York.

Agreed Dr. aaron...t looks like Park had moments of serviceability the last 2 seasons...but he's 36 years old, and for god's sake...can we stop looking to spend money on a "veteran" arm in the bullpen when we have a gazillion arms ready to go from the minors?

http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20100222/ap_on_sp_...

Look for MLB to start testing in 2020.

Pujols already started to practice "tearing up" for the interview. This will happen, of course, long after he's gone from baseball and made untold millions of dollars.

...oh, and OMG WE'RE DOOMED!

Bruce Levine chat transcript from this afternoon:

http://espn.go.com/chicago/chat/_/id/30998/es...

He could use some better questions to answer.

SO let's see, if Milton does a 360 on his attitude, and improves his batting, including DH, does that qualify him for comeback player of the year?

And let's see, if he does do that, do Cubs fans replace the sign "It's Gonna Happen" with "OMG WE'RE DOOMED!"

And let's see, will there be some apologies here on TCR?

And let's see, if Carlos Silva reports to camp overweight and out of shape, will someone put up a billboard midseason with MB's picture that says, "Miss Me Yet?"

If Milton does a 360 on his attitude, he ends up right back where he started and we all know that's no good!

with ichiro in RF bradley will probably get the LF job. having the DH will probably help him to an extra slew of AB's as long as his legs are okay, too.

Yeah, because all of us here are shocked that Silva came in out of shape, and that he sucks.

If Byrd can't outproduce .257/.387/.398, and play at least 125 games without making waves like MB, then I guess?

So how many games would Bradley have DH'ed for the Cubs in 2010?

Well Bradley wants to have "fun" this year-
http://seattletimes.nwsource.com/html/mariner...

"Griffey said he'll have no problem saying something to Bradley — in private — if he sees him struggling at some aspect of his game. But he'll do it in a one-on-one setting, with a helpful intent and some humor weaved in."

managing individuals rather than managing mob mentality when you know you have a "special case" kid in your locker room you've devoted a lot of money to...griff knows.

Hahahahhaa.....poor, misunderstood Milton.

you still have reading comprehension problems.

Do we know if someone on Cubs tried individual talks with Milton? I thought a few players said they tried to talk to him but he rebuffed.

Who did Griff help with kid gloves?

~just asking~

that IS how you manage milton. ask ron washington.

you know what you're getting before hand and if you're not willing to take it you shouldn't get involved.

the dude is a baby. if you're not willing to put up with tantrums, baby him, and calm everyone else who has to deal with him then don't get involved.

you don't tame milton...you deal with milton.

Excellent point crunch!

They should never have got involved.

now that we do agree on.

i thought it'd work out differently, fwiw...but that went south real fast.

Agreed.

The telling part is he said he enjoyed being in TX, SD and Oak. All small media, baseball wise, markets that would not probe him that much.

That being said expectations are high in Seattle this year, but I doubt he will get half the scrutiny he received here and in LA.

Apologies if I have this incorrect, crunch, but aren't you the one who said people told you Griffey wasn't exactly a great clubhouse guy?

don't think so, but there's a slew in CIN that would probably make that claim.

i probably would have said he's not a leader because he was majorly faulted during his CIN tenure...esp. with dave miley...for not being a leader.

dlee isn't a leader...aram isn't a leader...not everyone can be cal ripken jr.

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  • Good thing the Cubs have five left-handed batters in the lineup. Velasquez is just tearing thru the righties [edit - doesn't seem to faze Bryant!]

    Eric S 59 min 33 sec ago view
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    crunch 1 hour 33 min ago view
  • HAGSAG: I have not seen Joe Nathan out on the field, but he is supposedly at the UAPC. 

    Arizona Phil 4 hours 29 min ago view
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    Arizona Phil 4 hours 32 min ago view
  • E-MAN: Pierce Johnsion was mixing a 92-94 MPH fastball with a plus-change-up AND curve, and he threw strike-after-strike-after-strike with all three of his pitches. I believe that was the best command and pitch-efficiency I've ever seen from Johnson, who often pitches from behind in the count and issues too many walks.  

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    Arizona Phil 4 hours 42 min ago view
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    The E-Man 5 hours 24 min ago view
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    Hagsag 10 hours 10 min ago view
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    Eric S 19 hours 52 min ago view
  • With several other Cubs hitters bailing out on curves today I think overall it wasn't being seen well. It for sure looked silly but a good breaking pitch coming at you and then breaking down isn't the easiest thing to see and has made many hitters look silly. Also Soler should have more walks this year but for quite a few called strikes that were actual balls and even the called strike he bailed on was borderline.

    johann 22 hours 50 min ago view
  • it's not like we're talking about a guy who's never had issues with pitch selection and seeing the ball over here. we're talking about a guy who has some rather legendary swing-and-misses at breaking stuff who's been exploited low. going forward it's worth paying attention to seeing if he can be exploited inside, too. he seriously bailed out of the box on a called strike. sure it was a good curve, but he obviously didn't see that well at all.

    crunch 23 hours 2 min ago view
  • It would seem like he is figuring it out now and it's really coming together. Really happy for him. Joe was really protecting him from the 3rd time through the order, but as you allude to, he is earning trust to go deeper.

    Wondering if has potential to become a #3 pitcher? His current stats certainly support it.

    The E-Man 23 hours 11 min ago view
  • That doesn't count b/c CRUNCH didn't see it on his 60" HDTV 5 times in replay.

    I have seen many players "bail out" when the ball looked like it was gonna hit them.

    Especially with the advent of the splitter and pitchers that can really get the ball to dance. Marmol, Sutter, Pedro Martinez, Curt Schilling, Derek Lowe, Smoltz, Arrietta...

    These guys have made the best bail out only for the ball to come over the plate and be called a strike.

    No shame in that. The same way players whiff hard enough to cause them to drill a hole in the ground from spinning.

    The E-Man 23 hours 16 min ago view
  • a 60" TV with slow-motion replay and multiple looks on that replay helps...a lot...

    it's one thing to shy away like he did the 2nd time, it's another to bail out of the box on a called strike. that happened in the 1st one he pulled away from. he misjudged that one by a foot or so...

    crunch 23 hours 35 min ago view
  • Good Hendricks sure is fun to watch. He was hitting all his corners today and the Phillies couldn't do anything with his changeup.

    johann 1 day 11 min ago view
  • Bryant and I believe Zobrist both did that too.

    johann 1 day 29 min ago view