Where the Old Rubber Hits the Road

retreadsThings are really humming down at the old retread factory!


Todd Wellemeyer returned to the scene of former mediocrity and made one more lackluster start here for old times’ sake on May 5. The next day he reported that he was right on schedule as he rehabbed a sore hip en route back to the big leagues but that was apparently a smoke screen. The day after that he decided to call it a career. Today his spot on the ever fluid roster was taken by Doug Davis who is old enough to run for president should he too decide to shift gears after he makes his I-Cub debut when the team hits the road tomorrow night at Colorado Springs. Good luck in the rarified air of the PCL, Doug. If things don’t go well remember that Iowa’s precinct caucuses are mere months away and there is no clear frontrunner yet among righties. Without knowing much about where you stand when not on the mound, I’m not sure how well a southpaw might do here right now.  


Homestand #2 wound up this afternoon with Ramon Ortiz getting cuffed up to the tune of 13 hits in six IP - so much for what I said last week about his serviceability.


Also, in case you missed it but do care, as I did and do, Max Ramirez was released last week.


It’s starting to look like there’s a detour on I-80 between Iowa and Chicago that routes through Tennessee. Des Moines is about 150 miles closer as the crow drives, but I’m not sure you can get there from here if you’re a ballplayer in the Cubs’ organization this year.


Random bits: 1] Keith Moreland’s honeymoon is over. If he has a spare personality back home in Texas I suggest he have it shipped it to him ASAP. 2] Project ≤ three million update = 32K on Mother’s Day vs. a division rival? Plenty of tickets still available for upcoming Cardinal series? I’m taking the under…


 

Comments

True that on Moreland. I was part of the Yes 84, No Otto crowd, but ... do I actually miss the way Ronny called games? Aw jeez ....

Mariners DFA Uncle Milty

Both Milton Bradley and Marlon Byrd were/are their respective teams' primary #3 hitters this year. Here are the numbers they put up:

Burd: .265 .287 .357 .644 12R,8RBI,1HR, 1SB

Miltown: .220 .316 .360 .676 12R,13RBI,2HR,4SB

As unproductive as Uncle Milty was, Marlon Byrd has actually been worse.

lol... stop it. Even if true, let us be blissfully ignorant.

One word, Milton...............Japan. Don't let the 747 hit you in the ass.

Yeah, he should do particularly well in a culture that emphasizes respect...

...and humility.

I hate reality shows, but I would totally watch "Milton Bradley Meets Japan" on TLC.

i never watch 'em but i too might make an exception for an episode of that one...

Another possible detour to Chicago is thru Daytona ... D-cubs continue their mashing ways, even with Jae-Hoon Ha going O-fer, taking brevard manatees out at the knees, 11-7. Justin Bour hitting his 8th HR on the season, after hitting just 12 total last season at Peoria.

Even the second time that article was linked it makes no sense.

Fire Hendry and the farm director, keep Wilkens.

Agreed. I find this line the funniest:

"If Ricketts doesn’t like the way Hendry spends money, then hire a strong club president to impose greater financial discipline"

Isn't managing talent to get the most bang for the buck the number one job of the general manager?

Take credit when things go well, and make excuses when they don't seems to be the job description.

astros sign max ramirez...because PIT and BAL are no longer the saddest teams in baseball...

Random bits: 1] Keith Moreland’s honeymoon is over. If he has a spare personality back home in Texas I suggest he have it shipped it to him ASAP.

Cosign.

Cubs down a run, two guys in scoring position in the 7th inning. 2-outs, 3-2 count...

Keith Moreland: "This is a biiiig pitch."
Me: ...sigh

Maybe 3/44, La Russa will not be managing the Cards. Has shingles.

i wonder who's fault it is he has shingles besides tony larussa? ...because nothing is ever his fault...ever.

...probably liberal commie aliens who steal signs from the bleachers and take his tax money to buy fake birth certificates for presidents of major countries.

Take it easy, Crunch. I'm a Republican now and I'm very offended by your post. The rich are taxed enough already... Lowering taxes on the rich will increase revenue don'tchaknow.

as long as no one steals larussa's signs the rest don't matter.

if larussa wasn't rich and had to live in middle america like most of us i'm pretty sure he'd be a "GIT OWF MUH LAWN" type neighbor.

He was a "Git off my lawn" type of manager with the A's. When the A's were declining in the early 90's and the White Sox were an up and coming team, playing NL style ball under Jeff Torborg, LaRussa was a little whiny bitch in every series, complaining about things like Sox players' shoelaces, necklaces, etc. He's a F-ing turd.

Only in crunchland can I guy give himself chickenpox....

thank you for bringing logic into a larussa-is-paranoid/reactive comment.

i bet you're stealing signs. i'm telling.

And the Cubs have too many singles.

/i'll see myself out

Mets SP Chris Young likely done for the season with another shoulder injury.

http://sports.yahoo.com/mlb/rumors/post/Mets-...

Theriot ss, Rasmus CF, Pujols 1b, Holliday LF, Berkman RF, Molina C, Punto 2B, Descalso 3B,Carpenter P

vs.

RF Fuke, 2B Barney, CF Byrd, 3B Ramy, LF Soriano, 1B Pena, SS Castro, C Soto, P Zambrano

another day, another lineup.

at least quade can recognize when someone is struggling...at this point in time, castro.

Soto is still 8th.

top 1/3 vs bottom 1/3 of lineup tonite- who ya got?

Cubs lineup by wOBA:

.398, .330, .315, .309, .359, .295, .326, .320, .347

vs.

Cards
.311, .383, .330, .475, .492, .308, .281, .286, .205

i'd like to see the series start w/ zombie dotting theriot on the 1st pitch tonight...

Recent comments

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  • I think while I get what you're saying with moving around a lot of baseball is very rhythm based and for many players moving around a lot could disrupt that. It's the same reason many players aren't cut out for phing or dhing since they need to be in the rhythm of the game to hit.

    Of course then you have players like LaStella who are terrible as starters and should only PH. Really hope Madden doesn't get enthralled with him starting too much.

  • The players are required to perform with minimal thinking, relying on reflex, reaction, and muscle memory (or, as you say, rhythm). I think this point of view doesn't lend itself well to changing things up. Wearing Zany suits, on the other hand, does sound like fun and definitely keeps things interesting.

  • Scared me for a minute with your anagram for "Almora".

  • KKVG: Among the players at Extended Spring Training, Isaac Paredes is the most-impressive position-player from the Cubs 2015-16 IFA class (I'm not including OF Eddy Julio Martinez, because he skipped EXST and began the season at South Bend). Paredes has legit game power and handles himself well at SS, although I think he will likely eventually end-up at 2B or 3B (maybe not this year, but down-the-line). It is possible that Paredes will get assigned to Eugene (and skip AZL) next month, and I would say he's the only one of the Cubs 2015-16 IFA position players who could.

  • Having been a mediocre HS player, I would think at a professional level - and in their 20's - doesn't it sound actually FUN to have a chance to play different positions in a 162-Game, uber-long season?

    It has to take some of the monotony out of the job and keep you on your toes.

    In fact, the best manufacturing floor job satisfaction training theories include job rotation as a way to improve employee satisfaction.

    I hope Maddon can keep it going.

  • (It's usually KK, because his DNA is more like ours.)

  • Not just Maddon, but the organization as a whole. If the rumors are to be believed, they did a good job of letting Baez learn that he needed to change his approach, and Baez has done a good job listening to their instructions an adapting. Hopefully the same is true of Alomar, who is ripping up AAA.

    Previous management teams haven't been as good at this (e.g. Corey Patterson).

  • Man, this team makes you greedy. Going into Pittsburgh -- with Cole vs. Hammel Game 1 -- I was hoping for 2 out of 3. After winning the first 2 games 14-3, I now want a sweep. Same thing happened in STL. Very, very fun.

  • Repeating myself, but I give Maddon a lot of credit for Baez's success. Instead of talking about monster HRs and high K totals, he has talked up his defense, versatility and being a "special" player. The kid seems to have responded.

  • BOB: The attendance has taken a big hit since you left. 

  • K-DUB: I think the Cubs might consider skipping Dylan Cease past South Bend and starting him at Myrtle Beach next season, especially if he gets some time at South Bend this season and pitches well there. As a southern kid with TJS history, pitching at Myrtle Beach in April is probably a lot more attractive than pitching in South Bend, but Cease can't go to Myrtle Beach if he isn't ready for Hi-A. 

  • His story makes him someone I completely root for to succeed but it's interesting that he's not succeeding in the way anyone thought when he was just a prospect. Great defense and contact instead of power. I think failing so glaringly and getting sent back down might have been the best thing for him and his ego.

    He still swings at too many balls out of the strike zone but he's making a lot more contact on them which I think is helped by the less violent swing. So we might not get all the HRs we were expecting but I'll gladly take what he's giving.

  • "KingKongVsGodzilla"? So - was there a winner?

  • Baez is looking like a pretty special player.

  • Hey AZPhil,

    Love checking TCR for your writeups. Quick question - any of these 2015 positional IFAs stand out to you yet? I'm most specifically referring to Kwon, Sierra, Paredes, and Amaya, but I know there's a couple other guys from that class in EXST as well.

  • bored...looking at stats for the hell of it...

    felix pena (26yo) moving to the pen in AAA is looking like an insanely good fit so far in a smallish sample size

    13ip 4h 3bb 20K

    remembering back to spring training he was regularly hitting mid-90s (though he didn't have a good spring stats-wise). as a starter in the minors he usually worked low-90s.

    this could be an arm worth keeping an eye on even if he's only a 1-inning guy who was "demoted" to the pen to start the year.