Preparing for the 2012 Apocalypse
According to the Mayan calendar, the Cubs will win the World Series in 2012, causing an apocalypse about six weeks later.
So since it's getting late, here's a look ahead at what the Cubs roster might look like in about six months, and what the player payroll obligations will be going into the historic 2012 season.
This does not address potential free-agents the Cubs might pursue or players the Cubs might target in a trade, although it should give you some idea of how much the Cubs might have available to spend for free-agents.
PROJECTED DECEMBER 2011 CHICAGO CUBS 40-MAN ROSTER
NOTE: "OUT OF MINOR LEAGUE OPTIONS IN 2012" applies only to players who will have less than five years of MLB Service Time accrued through the 2011 season, because players with five or more years of MLB Service Time can refuse an assignment to the minors even if they have minor league options left.
39 players (one slot will probably be left open)
* bats or throws left
# bats both
* JEFF BELIVEAU (will likely be added to 40-man roster by 11/20 deadline)
* John Gaub
ANGEL GUZMAN (will likely be added to 40-man roster in September)
JAY JACKSON (will likely be added to 40-man roster by 11/20 deadline)
* Scott Maine
* Sean Marshall
* James Russell
OUT OF MINOR LEAGUE OPTIONS IN 2012: Guzman, Mateo, and Samardzija
ARBITRATION ELIGIBLE POST-2011: Garza, Guzman, and Wells
* STEVE CLEVENGER (will likely be added to 40-man roster by 11/20 deadline)
# Koyie Hill
OUT OF MINOR LEAGUE OPTIONS IN 2012: Soto
ARBITRATION ELIGIBLE POST-2011: Hill and Soto
* Blake DeWitt
* RYAN FLAHERTY (will likely be added to 40-man roster by 11/20 deadline)
# MARWIN GONZALEZ (will likely be added to 40-man roster by 11/20 deadline)
* BRYAN LAHAIR (will likely be added to 40-man roster in September)
D. J. LeMahieu
JOSH VITTERS (will likely be added to 40-man roster by 11/20 deadline)
OUT OF MINOR LEAGUE OPTIONS IN 2012: Lahair (only matters if he is on 40-man roster, otherwise he is a minor league FA)
ARBITRATION ELIGIBLE POST-2011: Baker and DeWitt
* Tony Campana
* Tyler Colvin
MATT SZCZUR (will likely be added to 40-man roster by 11/20 deadline)
ARBITRATION ELIGIBLE POST-2011: Montanez could qualify as a “Super Two” (still TBD)
LIKELY TO GET OUTRIGHTED:
Justin Berg, P (would be out of minor league options in 2012)
Esmailin Caridad, P
# Fernando Perez, OF (would be out of minor league options in 2012)
Brian Schlitter, P (after he is reinstateed from 60-day DL post-2011)
ELIGIBLE TO BE MINOR LEAGUE FREE-AGENT IF OUTRIGHTED: Berg and F. Perez can be minor league free-agents post-2011 if outrighted to minors, but Caridad and Schlitter cannot be minor league FA until post-2014
NOTE: It’s possible that one or more of the veteran minor leaguers presently at Iowa (like Bryan Lahair, Scott Moore, Augie Ojeda, and/or Bobby Scales) could get a September "courtesy" call-up, but if that happens, all except Lahair would likely get outrighted back to the minors after the season (and then each can be a minor league FA), with Lahair probably kept on the 40-man roster at least until a first-baseman is signed or acquired via trade during the off-season.
ARTICLE XX-B MLB FREE-AGENT POST-2011:
* Doug Davis, P
Ryan Dempster, RHP (player option)
* John Grabow, P
Reed Johnson, OF
Rodrigo Lopez, P
* Carlos Pena, 1B
Aramis Ramirez, 3B (mutual option with club option $2M buy-out)
Kerry Wood, P
* Kosuke Fukudome, OF
SIGNED BEYOND 2011:
NOTE: Salaries do not include signing bonuses not actually paid in 2012
+ Has NO TRADE rights in 2012
+ Alfonso Soriano ($18M 2012 through 2014)
+ Carlos Zambrano ($18M in 2012 and a $19.25M vesting-player option in 2013)
+ Aramis Ramirez ($16M mutual option or $2M club buy-out in 2012)
+ Ryan Dempster ($15.5M player option in 2012)
Carlos Silva (RELEASED - $2M 2012 buy-out still to be paid)
Carlos Marmol ($7M in 2012 and $9.8M in 2013)
Marlon Byrd ($6.5M in 2012)
Carlos Pena (FA post-2011 - $5M deferred from 2011 salary to be paid pre-2012)
Sean Marshall ($3.1M in 2012)
+ Jeff Samardzija ($3M club option in 2012 and $3.5 mutual option in 2013)
SUB-TOTAL: $94M (or $77M if Ramirez and Samardzija club options are declined)
NOTE: If Samardzija’s 2012 club option is declined, he would lose his “no trade” rights and would revert back to being an “auto-renewal” player for 2012 (thereby being subject to a unilateral club option 20% pay-cut from his 2011 $3M salary), and if he is cut the max 20%, he would receive a non-guaranteed $2.4M contract for 2012 (and Cubs would owe him $600K severance if he is released prior to 2012 Opening Day). Samardzija will not be eligible for salary arbitration until after the 2012 season.
PROJECTED ELIGIBLE FOR SALARY ARBITRATION POST-2011:
Jeff Baker ($2M?)
Blake DeWitt ($1.25M?)
Kosuke Fukudome (see NOTE)
Matt Garza ($9M?)
ANGEL GUZMAN ($1M? - but only if he is added to 40-man roster prior to becoming a minor league FA)
Koyie Hill ($1M?)
Luis Montanez ($750K? - but only if he qualifies for Salary Arbitration as a “Super Two”)
Geovany Soto ($5M?)
Randy Wells ($3M?)
NOTE: Kosuke Fukudome is technically eligible for salary arbitration post-2011, but he has the right to demand his Outright Release if he has not signed a contract-extension by 11-15-2011
ESTIMATED SUB-TOTAL: $23M (presuming Fukudome is released)
AUTO-RENEWAL (PRE-ARBITRATION) POST-2011:
JEFF BELIVEAU (presuming he is added to 40-man roster)
STEVE CLEVENGER (presuming he is added to 40-man roster)
MARWIN GONZALEZ (presuming he is added to 40-man roster)
RYAN FLAHERTY (presuming he is added to 40-man roster)
BRYAN LAHAIR (presuming he is added to 40-man roster)
D. J. LeMahieu
Luis Montanez - unless eligible for Salary Arbitration as a “Super Two” (see above)
Jeff Samardzija ($2.4M - but only if 2012 club option is declined)
MATT SZCZUR (presuming he is added to 40-man roster)
JOSH VITTERS (presuming he is added to 40-man roster)
ESTIMATED SUB-TOTAL: $8M (includes $2.4M salary for Samardzija, average $450K 2011 salary for 10 auto-renewal players on MLB 25-man roster, and average $75K minor league “split“ salary for the 15 players who would be on optional assignment to minors)
ESTIMATED PROJECTED TOTAL 2012 PAYROLL: $108M (presuming Ramirez club option is declined, Fukudome is released, Samardzija's option is declined and he becomes an "auto-renewal" player, and none of the MLB free-agents are offered salary arbitration)
NOTE: The Cubs could net about $4M in 2012 payroll savings by non-tendering Samardzija, K. Hill, DeWitt, and Montanez, and not adding Guzman to the 40-man roster, and then replacing them on the 25-man roster with five auto-renewal players making an average of $450K, but that still only gets the 2012 payroll down to about $104M.
2012 CUBS MLB PAYROLL BUDGET: $???M (it appears that the 2011 Cubs MLB payroll budget is around $130M)
NOTE: The Cubs 2010 (last year's) payroll budget was apparently originally somewhere around $140M, but the team actually only ended up spending about $132M of it after Dempster‘s contract was re-structured (back-loaded) and Lilly, Theriot, D. Lee, and Fontenot were traded. The Cubs right now are on target to spend about $128M in player payroll in 2011, but it could be reduced if some of the veteran players (like Pena, Grabow, Wood, et al) are traded later in the season.
ELIGIBLE TO BE ARTICLE XX-D MINOR LEAGUE FREE-AGENT POST-2011:
Brad Snyder, OF
NOTE: An minor league player eligible to be an Article XX-D free-agent is not eligible to be a free-agent if the player is added back to an MLB 40-man roster prior to the conclusion of the MLB regular season. A player eligible to be an Article XX-D minor league free-agent can file for free-agency beginning on the day after the conclusion of the MLB regular season up through October 15th. The player’s former club does not receive any compensation if the player signs with a new club.
ELIGIBLE TO BE RULE 55 MINOR LEAGUE FREE-AGENT POST-2011:
NOTE: A minor league player eligible to be a Rule 55 free-agent is not eligible to be a FA if the player is added to his club’s 40-man roster by the 4th day following the conclusion of the World Series.
SIX-YEAR MINOR LEAGUE FA:
James Adduci, OF
Justin Berg, RHP (but only if outrighted to minors)
Marco Carrillo, RHP
Robert Coello, RHP
ANGEL GUZMAN, RHP (likely to be added to 40-man roster in September)
Dylan Johnston, RHP
BRYAN LAHAIR, 1B (likely to be added to 40-man roster in September)
Mario Mercedes, C
Scott Moore, INF
Jonathan Mota, INF
Augie Ojeda, INF
Ramon Ortiz, RHP
Fernando Perez, OF (but only if outrighted to minors)
Chris Robinson, C
Bobby Scales, INF
Alvaro Sosa, RHP
Jeff Stevens, RHP
John Urick, 1B (player-coach)
PREVIOUSLY RELEASED - WILL BE MINOR LEAGUE FA UNLESS SIGNED BEYOND 2011:
Adrian Aviles, LHP (previously released by LAD)
Austin Bibens-Dirkx, RHP (previously released by SEA)
Carlos Figueroa, INF (previously released by COL)
ELIGIBLE FOR SELECTION IN DECEMBER 2011 RULE 5 DRAFT:
Jeffry Antigua, LHP
Adrian Aviles, LHP (unless MLB Rule 55 minor league FA - see above)
JEFF BELIVEAU, LHP (likely to be added to 40-man roster post-2011)
Austin Bibens-Dirkx, RHP (unless MLB Rule 55 minor league FA - see above)
Smaily Borges, OF
Michael Brenly, C
Justin Bristow, RHP
Michael Burgess, OF
Kyler Burke, LHP (ex-OF)
David Cales, RHP
Matt Camp, IF-OF
Hung-Wen Chen, RHP
STEVE CLEVENGER, C-1B (likely to be added to 40-man roster post-2011)
Manolin DeLeon, RHP
Carlos Figueroa, INF (unless MLB Rule 55 minor league FA - see above)
Eduardo Figueroa, RHP
RYAN FLAHERTY, IF-OF (likely to be added to 40-man roster post-2011)
Luis Flores, C
MARWIN GONZALEZ, IF-OF (likely to be added to 40-man roster post-2011)
Miguel Gonzalez, C
Yohan Gonzalez, RHP
Jose Guevara, C
Gian Guzman, INF-RHP (player-coach)
Marcus Hatley, RHP
JAY JACKSON, RHP (likely to be added to 40-man roster post-2011)
Junior Lake, INF
Blake Lalli, C-1B
Jordan Latham, RHP
David Macias, IF-OF
Oswaldo Martinez, RHP
Craig Muschko, RHP
Jon Nagel, RHP
Jake Opitz, INF
Blake Parker, RHP
Nelson Perez, OF
Ramon Reyes, RHP
Dae-Eun Rhee, RHP
Rebel Ridling, 1B
Carlos Romero, C
Nate Samson, INF
Ryan Searle, RHP
Marquez Smith, 3B
Matt Spencer, 1B-OF
Larry Suarez, RHP
MATT SZCZUR, OF (likely to be added to 40-man roster post-2011)
Jose Tineo, RHP
Jose Valdez, OF
JOSH VITTERS, 3B-1B (likely to be added to 40-man roster post-2011)
Ty Wright, OF
NOTE: A player on this list is not eligible for selection in the Rule 5 Draft if he is added to an MLB 40-man roster by 11/20. Any free-agent signed to a minor league contract prior to the Rule 5 Draft is eligible for selection.
A left-handed one...
lester going for #20...cubs haven't had a 20 game winner since d.ellsworth in 1963.
J-Hey not finishing with an offensive onslaught.
If Geoff Blum could be a Playoff hero, there is hope still...
Giants scare me. I think you're wrong about Bumgarner, he would pitch on short rest for Game 2 and then full rest for Game 5. Cueto would go Game 1, then short rest in game 4. Add in some really tough outs in that lineup and I want nothing to do with them. With that rotation they can easily steal a series.
Cards are a tough matchup. The rivalry evens out their comparable lack of talent. And like someone said, they love HRs, which is how to beat the Cubs. The upside is that I would feel really good about Lester twice against STL.
j.buchanan with a nice start...5ip 2h 1bb 3k, 0r/er
zobrist with 2HR and a double through 8
heyward 0-4 :(
Mark Gonzales @MDGonzales
Soler likely to return Sunday, Maddon says
Right now, I'd like to see the Mets first, Giants 2nd.
I believe that since most of the team from last years' NLCS is on the squad this year, they will really amp their game up even more to kick their ass in payback for 2015.
The Giants just do not have the depth in years past, and I think all things equal - and at Wrigley - they could handle them.
I do not want to see the Cards, period. Or their fans, media, or Joe Buck.
I don't want to play Braves in the first round. Any friggin team in the league can win 3 of 5..I hate the first round. Furthermore, I wanted to play the Marlins in 2003 and the Mets over Dodgers last year.
With that said in reverse order:
3. Cardinals: It will be devastating to lose in the first round, but even worse to their main rival. It is increased incentive for the Cardinals, especially after last year. Cards would have nothing to lose, Cubs have everything to lose.
2. Giants: Rotation in the playoffs scare me a bit, but what a lousy team.
1. Mets--because of the losses in the rotation
2. Giants--because they're not the team they were BUT they maybe have bullshit even-year magic?
3. Cardinals--because rivalry and not making the playoffs hurts them more than losing in the NLDS plus getting eliminated by them in the playoffs would make for horrible sports commentary next throughout next season.
CLE/DET rained out last night already, possible rain-outs in New York (vs. Baltimore), Boston(vs. Toronto) and Philly(vs. Mets) this weekend too.
Not only games involving playoff spots that would need to be played, but any that involve home field advantage.
I got the first one! Second one I'm not even sure what even/odd betting is.
any opponent preference for NLDS?
Mets are down to 1 great pitcher instead of 4. Syndegaard may pitch Sunday which means if Mets win the WC game, he'd be set up for Game 1. There's a chance they clinch a spot by Sunday so he'd pitch the WC and then we'd probably get Colon for Game 1. They've certainly had the hottest bats over the last week and month out of the WC options.
A couple of Cub related puzzles.
Can't teach height and thinness
Hopefully Pirates don't call up A. Lincoln.