Perplexing, Isn't It?

So the trade deadline came and went, not with a bang, but a whimper. The only move that Hendry sought fit to make was trade Kosuke Fukudome and about $4M for a couple of non-descript minor leaguers. Ones that must be better than what the Cubs already have per Hendry's reasoning below. It was also a move Hendry indicated had to happen so they could make room for Tyler Colvin, whom promptly sat on Sunday night versus a right-handed starter.

Hendry's reasoning behind the rest of the inaction...

“There’s not somebody waiting to take [Pena's] place for next year
in-house like Tyler is hopeful to do that in the outfield in moving
Fuke,” Hendry said. You have to look at it that way, too.

“The other factor, if you get a second-tier or two prospect back
and you already have people better than that in your own system, then
you really haven’t done anything to help the organization, and then
you’re also put in the spot where if you add minor-league players today,
that means somebody’s going to be sent backwards in our system or
eliminated. That’s just the way I looked at it.”

It's tough to play armchair GM when you don't know what the offers were, but that hasn't stopped the blogosphere and the media before. The problem for me and I suspect many of you is Hendry's tone that essentially most of the team can be part of a winning club in 2013. It's that sort of detached reality that is infuriating. What's also infuriating is the notion that seemed prevalent in a few of the articles yesterday that one of the reasons they didn't move Pena was because they're considering bringing him back next year, presumably if they can't land Prince Fielder or Albert Pujols. I'm not necessarily against bringing Pena back if that ends up the case, but since he's a free agent regardless at the end of the year, his agent is Scott Boras and currently he would not net the Cubs any draft pick compensation even if they offer arbitration, keeping him around does little to increase the Cubs chances of resigning him. And it's certainly not outweighed by whatever marginal prospects they couldn't have gotten back.

The other guy that seemed to have some real interest from other teams was Marlon Byrd, well at least from the Braves. I understand the Cubs would still need to be looking for a center fielder next year if they did trade him, on the other hand he'll be 34 next year and on a good year, he's barely touching an .800 OPS. This doesn't seem like it's that hard to replace even if Brett Jackson isn't ready. But I would have been happy with Jordan Shafer and a minor league arm myself.

As for the Fukudome deal. you fine readers seemed upset over the haul of prospects. For a corner outfielder that doesn't hit home runs and has a .664 OPS since April 29th, they got what they could in my opinion. Abner Abreu seems to have some upside at age 21 and some love from the scouts for his bat speed and potential power (6-3" frame), some of which started to show this year. He also seems to play some decent defense with a real good arm. Unfortunately a career 25.9% K rate and not much willingness to take a walk, means he'll either have to find that power or change his approach radically to become a regular. But a 5th outfielder is a necessity as well and Abreu still has time on his side to reach that lofty goal.

As for Carlton Smith, well you can't have enough pitching. As a converted catcher, he started showing some strikeout ability this season with a K rate over 9 per inning. The walk and home run rates are a little high, but another possible bullpen arm, one that is presumably not too far from the majors isn't a terrible thing to acquire.

While blogging is generally all about over the top reactions with little information, I generally try to see both sides of the issue and understand what Hendry or Cubs management is doing and most importantly, understand we as fans are only privy to part of the process. Guys like Byrd, Baker, Grabow and so forth can just as easily be traded in August or the offseason for likely similar hauls then what can be had now. But the lack of interst and motivation in moving Carlos Pena is one that I just can't wrap my head around. I read what Hendry had to say and that makes some sense, but there's just little reason for me to believe, they're in any better position to resign him if they traded him and that he offers much to the Cubs the next 2 months, other than keeping them farther from the #1 draft pick if he sticks around and plays decently.

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Comments

Unfortunately the unexpected Quade 2nd half "resurgence" is what Hendry is trying to keep his job with. That can be the only logical explanation at this point? He's going to try and push for a .500 post deadline in a feeble effort to keep his job. A job he has sucked at for many many years no less.

I wonder how many guys have been traded during a season and then re-signed with the team that traded them. It always gets talked about, but how often does it happen?

I can remember John Tudor, and everyone sort of knew it was going to happen... there was someone more recent as well.

Didn't Terry Mulholland come back to us in the 90's the next year?

I think Rickey Henderson did it with the A's. There are a handful of other ones, too, but my brain is a little slow right now accessing it's RAM.

I don't think he's been traded by the Cubs, but hasn't Reed Johnson come and gone and come again about 73 times? Or is it just my imagination.

"Guys like Byrd, Baker, Grabow and so forth can just as easily be traded in August or the offseason for likely similar hauls then what can be had now."

I tend to disagree there. Well, Grabow, probably can't be traded for anything without throwing in salary, but Byrd rankes 8th among center fielders in OPS and represents an upgrade for a handful of teams in the playoff hunt, including both teams in the AL Central.

Just like adding a guy like Matt Garza is more valuable when you're close to the top of the division, adding Byrd will be more valuable to teams in the playoff hunt. In August, you only have the opportunity to trade him to one team. Byrd probably fetches an additional 15-20 organizational prospect on July 31st, that he can't bring on Novermber 30th. But if you're really thinking you're going to compete next year, you can also trade for ML players. I would have loved to get in on Michael Bourn by trading Byrd the Braves... and it seems like that was something that Hendry used to have the mental wherewithal to do.

Baker isn't a bad guy to have around, but I am not sure he represents much of an upgrade over Marquez Smith. Just salary wise for 2012, it would probably have been smart to move on... but again, this is the GM that pays Koyie Hill $1 million to do what Castillo or Robinson or Clevenger could do for the minimum (probably less than they could do).

well if no one wanted Grabow now, then no one wants him in August, which is a "similar haul".

As for Byrd, In August, you only have the opportunity to trade him to one team. That's only true if he's claimed and that's a reasonable guess with his salary but not a sure thing. Depending on how Byrd finishes, I think teams have more payroll flexibility in the offseason to make deals.

He's cheap enough to keep around, that it doesn't upset me too much. Him being the #3 hitter again next year might though :)

byrd is pretty much the team leader/jokester/attitude/doing-it-right-vet type. plays a good enough CF...ties the lockerroom together.

unless the cubs want coco crisp i wouldn't want part of the CF FA market, myself...coco, 35 year old beltran, and cody ross are the only other CF's that come to mind that are gonna be FA's...oh yeah, sizemore if you wanna gamble.

#Cubs lineup for Mon 8/1: RF Johnson, SS Castro, 3B Baker, C Soto, CF Byrd, LF Soriano, 1B Pena, 2B Barney, P Zambrano

vs. Maholm

Too bad we had no way of telling that the Pirates were pitching a lefty tonight so Colvin sits for two days in a row... $130 million payroll, you'd think they could get a newspaper subscription or internet access for the manager.

Don't they also want to give him a chance against LHPS? If they want to truly evaluate Colvin, they should be giving him opportunities against lefties, too. Otherwise, all they're doing is evaluating him as a platoon player vs. RHP. I would guess that he is more likely to be a platoon player vs RHP, than a full-time player, but I thought the idea was to give him the rest of this year to show what he can do...

apparently the idea is to see how much Q-Ball can further fuck up the team

... I feel like we're about to be subjected to an article about how the Cubs still feel that this road trip is crucial, and who's to say that that they couldn't come out of this trip having won 5 or 6 out of 12? and wouldn't that be something?? I feel like we're not far from another declaration that the team is one series away from being right back in it....

"Too bad we had no way of telling that the Pirates were pitching a lefty tonight so Colvin sits for two days in a row."

I wasn't surprised when the Colvin-in-the-8-hole experiment ended after two games. Colvin is effed-up in the head right now and can't really help the team. Hendry would like to see Colvin magically rehabilitated, but meanwhile Quade would like to win a few games. I don't think they are on the same page on this.

Everyone knows that Jackson was slumping at Iowa when Fukudome was traded and Colvin got the call-up, but Colvin was doing just as poorly. Jackson was 10 for 49 with 3 doubles, 1 triple, 1 HR, 2 SBs. Over the same time period, Colvin was 10 for 48 with 1 double, 2 triples and 1 HR.

We didn't read about Colvin's slump. The story we're all supposed to buy is that Jackson, who since that day is 4 for 11 with 2 more HRs, isn't ready but Colvin belongs in right field every day.

Random comment. I think this is a great point now, and a microcosm of a Cubdom issue.

I believe you're right in that JH and Q are not on the same page, a la Q thinks sniffing .500 will help the world (honestly, streaks and all, that's about the very very best anyone in his shoes could dream of) and JH is supposedly thinking about next year and the winter (although, that goes back to, if they suck this year...)

I don't necessarily agree with the hate on not moving Pena, only because I think Hendry believes his 'intangibles' (or whatever BS term you want to call it) is worth paying for, having in the clubhouse, 'mentoring' the youngsters, more than a couple shit prospects he would have gotten back. This may or may not have anything to do with winning ballgames; some of you stat bubbas can figure out, do his HRs really offset his shitty avg?

Anyway, the Cubs have long been rumored to be worse than other organizations at having consistency at all levels. For instance, teaching/reinforcing how to, I dunno, catch the fucking ball, or push a bunt.

When was the last time a Cub was even in the fucking discussion for a Gold Glove? (even though that's a f'd up system, it still says a little something)

Pitching (particularly starting pitching) and defense have been sorely lacking. I may be crazy, but that's an issue, right?

But by golly, we've got Marmol..........

This may or may not have anything to do with winning ballgames; some of you stat bubbas can figure out, do his HRs really offset his shitty avg?

Well, his weighted OBA is .338, or 21st of 31 among 1st basemen with 300 PA's.

Cashner throws off mound again, feels good. Wants to get back in 3 weeks, but September is the target.

I don't know if Colvin will be a starter or not. I have an idea, but no one knows for sure. However, we have 2 months to find out something at least and in those two months he should play every day, lefty or righty on the mound. The fact that that isn't happening as of yet is not surprising, because this is the same idiot that played Hill when Soto was hurt this year and last and Nady at first last year after Lee was traded. Also, regarding trading players after 7/31, the fact that they have to clear waivers or we can only trade them to the team that claims them works in reverse also. We can only get someone on a team's 40 man roster if they clear waivers. This limits what we can get in return. Of course, we would be happy to get a top prospect that wasn't on someone's roster. A few years back I believe we made a five or six player trade in August that involved Macrae, that crappy relief pitcher that was Alou's cousin and a few others.

August 8, 1997: Chicago Cubs trade Brain McRae, Mel Rojas and Turk Wendell to the New York Mets for players to be named later and Lance Johnson. The New York Mets sent Mark Clark (August 11, 1997) and Manny Alexander (August 14, 1997) to the Chicago Cubs to complete the trade.

Didn't Manny Alexander get a clubhouse kid in trouble when he was with the Red Sox? As I recall, the kid was driving Manny's car to run an errand for him, got pulled over, and the cops found steroids in the glove box.

True story.

Manny did the whole "they weren't mine" defense.

He should have used them.

I don't know, our roster seems to be a collection of guys who are here to play baseball (sometimes) and cash a check. If its winning baseball or losing baseball ehhhhh doesn't really matter as long as their check arrives on time.

"same idiot that played Hill," etc., etc.

Maybe you haven't heard that Hill's mojo is working again. The Cubs are 16-12 in games that Hill has started. Actually it's 16-11, but I'm including in Hill's loss column the May 10 game that Soto started but left in the first inning after pulling a muscle.

I don't know what this means, except that it's not idiotic to play a guy who usually is first to the mound with a congratulatory handshake when his pitcher gets the final out.

I was referring to his playing Hill instead of Castillo to see what we have in Castillo. We had 2 chances to find out a bit and didn't find out either time because Hill played. Hill is not part of our future, Castillo may be.

It means about as much as Mike Quade's record as manager in 2010... aka nothing.

I'm torn by whether or not this is sarcasm.... I think it is.

Surely you're not touting the wonder of a guy who's behind the plate when, in a limited sample size, we're 5 FUCKING GAMES over .500??? Who doesn't know how to hit????

Not sarcastic at all. 184 games is not a small sample size. Cubs are 100-84 in games started by Hill.

I'm not sure how meaningful those numbers are. I was responding to the allegation that it was idiotic to put Hill in the lineup, which it obviously is not.

It would be tedious to count all the times I've seen the word "idiot" applied to Quade and Hendry in these pages in the last few weeks. I think they're both pretty smart, so that shows you how dumb I am.

I do think the Cubs have a couple of dumb players. Colvin and Marmol come to mind.

What makes you think either Marmol or Colvin are dumb?

Colvin, because he doesn't know what all hitters have to know to be in the majors (and what B. Jackson knew before he got to Boise): ahead in the count, pitchers tend to throw offspeed pitches that are not strikes. There are two reasons for this: the hitter might swing; and if pitchers make a mistake and throw a strike and the hitter drives it, they get yelled at by their coaches/managers.

Colvin thinks that when he gets two strikes on him, he's supposed to swing at anything close (and he has a generous definition of close). With him, two strikes and he's out, whereas a good hitter knows that with a little patience he can get to 3-2, another hitter's count.

Every little thing Colvin does at the plate indicates to me that his head is empty. The other night against Lohse, he swings at an 0-0 breaking ball in the dirt. I don't mind him swinging at bad pitch on a hitter's count, but most hitters, if they swing at the first pitch at all, are sitting on a fastball (like Ramirez does).

Then Colvin will take a 2-0 fastball down the middle. What is he looking for? Answer: nothing. He figures he's ahead in the count, he doesn't have to swing. So he chooses a 2-0 fastball to demonstrate patience.

Marmol, I just wish he would learn to control his fastball and also to throw it on the 95-mph side of his range rather than the 91 side. Simple rule, easy to understand: two good pitches are better than one.

Ok...but not having control of his fastball doesn't make him dumb, yeah?

Meh...either way.....you're dead on..It'd be nice to see Marmol thow a 95+ fastball over the plate...

I don't see how you can confidently say that either one of those issues indicate a lack of intelligence. What I see for Colvin is him having a difficult time identifying the pitch as it comes to the plate (he surely thought that first pitch he swung at was going to be a good one to hit)--and when you're 0-2, you do have to fight off anything that is close.

Marmol is wild. That is a product of his delivery as much as anything else--and I don't think it would be safe to start trying to change his delivery, as the violence of his motion is a big part of what throws off the hitters (I think) and probably helps produce the movement on both his fastball and his slider.

I think your frustration with both of those players as ballplayers is totally valid right now. I am not at all convinced that you can draw the conclusion that they are any smarter or dumber than any other player based on those details you cite, though.

The problems people point out with Hendry and Quade, on the other hand, don't have any physical execution issues to go along with them, so it's a little easier (if not always fair) to attack their intelligence.

Kevin Brown was documented as a genius IQ and he had control problems. If there's a correlation between IQ and plate discipline or command, it's a weak one. Being smart doesn't give you bat speed and sharp eyesight, or the coordination to repeat mechanics while exerting yourself strenously.

Randy Johnson must have got hit by a gamma beam to be smart enough to finally harness his control.

Koyie hill and Brett Jackson both strike out a lot.

Brett Jackson is a very smart hitter, just like Milton Bradley was. Just like Adam Dunn is. I prefer Jackson because he's better equipped to turn those walks into runs.

In fact, if I ran the Cubs, the first thing I would do is install Jackson in center (or right) and at the top of the lineup and leave him there and forget about him, and then say, "Next question?" I think he would be a difference maker.

I would be curious to know how many of Jackson's strikeouts (or even strikes) are swings and misses and how many are called-third strikes. To have a good plate approach you have to endure a few of those, and also have some intense interactions with the ump, as Jackson did on the 4th of July:

Fireworks were almost set off early when Brett Jackson was ejected by Home Plate Umpire Anthony Johnson in the sixth inning after being called out on strikes.

But you and Charlie ask the right question when you suggest that Colvin just doesn't pick up the speed of the ball and the spin on the ball. That's a horrible thought. There's no hope for him if that's true. I lean toward the idea that he sees that it's not a fastball, but he doesn't care because he's not looking for anything in particular. In that case, he first has to figure out what he's doing with a bat in his hand.

I guess I also believe that given the physical tools, then like anything else you can learn how to hit. Why not? Colvin does not have to be in the major leagues to work on the remedial hitting concepts that he seems to lack. It's embarrassing for him right now to show up every day sporting the lowest BA in the national league.

Jackson, on the other hand, doesn't have to learn anything. He's been the same hitter at every level. People have made way too much out of his first fifty at-bats at Iowa.

The basic how of hitting work stuff aside, Jackson has 26 strike outs in 78 AAA PA's, (that works out to 1 in 3, or about 230 over a full majaor league season, shattering the single season record) this is after he hit .256 in AA. Do you seriously think he's ready to hit major league pitching?

Colvin looks like Joe Mauer compared to that.

FWIW Colvin's plate discipline numbers are generally better in 2011:
http://www.fangraphs.com/statss.aspx?playerid...

Brett Jackson is a very smart hitter

How many times have you seen Brett Jackson hit?

I value your inputs on here a lot, like I do most of the folks I read.

But if you're telling me a grown man who isn't smart enough to not act like a two-year-old and (although I don't know his BABIP and am too lazy to look it up) a guy with a huge swing who can't smell the Mendoza Line this year to the tune of .165 (and who I am SO glad the Cubs didn't sign like some fans wanted) are your examples of 'smart', then I think we're just not going to see eye to eye on this.

I will caveat any Quade and/or Hendry comments I personally have made. Kind of like the arguing with the Ump, maybe I should say they're ACTING like idiots instead of ARE idiots.

Either way, the reasons are simple.

Quade First: One theory on basic leadership/management is that there are two components to performance: Motivation and Competence (for baseball, call 'competence' 'ability'). The assumption that a fan makes is that the players must have some level of ability, otherwise they wouldn't be in the major leagues. Furthermore, it is almost statistically impossible for the 15-20 or so MOST under-performing players to be on one team. So they must not be properly motivated, which means Quade isn't properly doing his job. (Another prevailing theory, one that I'm starting to believe in, is that the schedule and the facilities play a large role in this; one would think it is also almost statistically impossible for the Cubs to have played so long, with so many 'idiotic' managers, without real success...But I digress).

Hendry: When Joe Fan sees Hendry make what is, in Joe's estimation, a move that lacks any logic, Joe deduces that Hendry is an idiot. One perfect example is The Milton Bradley Experiment. Could Bradley have replicated his previous season with Texas on the North Side? Perhaps, but the odds, both statistically and based on his past, were not in his favor. It was a gamble, perhaps a calculated one, but one that turned out to be a piss poor decision, which is what Joe Fan tried to tell Hendry to begin with, through the blogosphere and everywhere else, which is why many Joes think Hendry is an idiot.

He's also made some great moves, I'm not denying it. But the Cubs during his tenure, I think, are a pretty good reflection of his work: A few playoff runs, some good times, and some really shitty ones.

And if that's all the Cub fan base wanted, or would pay for, then there'd be no reason to get rid of his ass.

But it's not. Since October 2003, the Cub fan base has become rabid. And most of them (us) will call for whoever's head needs to roll to make it that last step.

And call them 'idiots'.

A couple of points about Hendry.

1) Hendry certainly knew that Bradley was unstable, but he thought he could hit. That was understandable given the year Bradley had just had with Texas, but the fact is Bradley didn't put the bat on the ball for the Cubs. When you're not hitting (or pitching in Zambrano's case) your antics are magnified. I recall Hendry also opining that Bradley would add some life to the clubhouse, shake things up. The Cubs had seemed spiritless, zombie-like in the playoffs the previous two years.

2) In spite of Hendry's signing of the three stooges to plug holes in the outfield--and one of those contracts still having three years to run--I think the organization is in better shape than I have ever seen it. I even think 2012 will be a good year, assuming the Cubs use Jackson to fill the glaring need at the top of the order. Firings not in order.

One more quick note on Colvin: I'm not sure that you're estimation of his inability to make use of a favorable count is fair. If you look at his splits for his career at baseball reference, you'll see that he absolutely mashes after he gets ahead in the count.

After 1-0: .288/.403/.594
After 2-0: .333/.557/.756
After 3-0: .750/.944/1.750
After 2-1: .364/.348/.500
After 3-1: .500/.800/.667
Full Count: .297/.534/.730

From those numbers I would say it looks like he's looking for a ball he can crush when he's ahead--and he's more than willing to take a hack when he thinks he gets it.

Yes, I like your numbers and what they imply. So let me re-phrase my criticism of Colvin this way:

He takes the same rips regardless of the count. I love the swings he gets, by the way. Colvin gets more good rips in one at-bat than Byrd gets in a week.

But when you're behind, you have to stop hacking and work the count, because you probably won't see a hittable pitch again until 3 and 2.

Well...please explain why Colvin and Marmol are dumb?

Since Hill got called up the Cubs are 362 and 331 in all games. Hill has a slightly higher winning percentage (.543 to .522) than the team overall in that time. I wouldn't think it's statistically significant. You'd have to look at who he's been catching to really know if it means anything.

We can quite easily see what he's been doing with the bat, all the errors and stolen bases he allows, and see that he's among the worst players in MLB in those parts of his job.

I think you're probably right that Hill's W-L record is a non-issue. Back of the envelope, Soto was approximately 171-153 (wins-losses in games started) coming into this season. Now he's back around .500, but that's still pretty close to Hill.

I think I used to blame Soto for Marmol's looking confused and disorganized out there--maybe Piniella did also--but that's strictly on Marmol. Soto and Marshall look great together. I have no real issues with Soto behind the plate.

I think you're probably right that Hill's W-L record is a non-issue.

Then why do you keep bringing it up?

Thank you.

My point was that it was idiotic to play Hill when Castillo was up because we need to find out if Castillo can be a contributor. We still don't know, but it was idiotic to keep starting Hill and not find out anything about Castillo.

dlee solo HR (to LF) off Z...tie game.

sullivan says it was a 69mph pitch? be awesome if Cubs are just throwing games now.

it was a slider that didnt break enough...hung low/in over too much of the plate.

fwiw, his good fastball seems to be hitting 91-93mph tonight. he's been working a regular 91-94mph all season.

the homers and walks have sucked, but he's at least built himself back up into a passable starter as old skills have given way to new skills...now let's see if he can actually find 200ip.

If they start throwing games, do you think it's possible Kenesaw Landis will ban the whole team from baseball?

That's what I'm hoping for.

Daaaaaaamn!!

fun fact...

Z is third on the team in OPS

barf.

I'm waiting with bated breath for the day we trade Soriano and the Cubs do their best Yankees impression...... ZamBabe as our new LF

wow...soriano beats out a double play by using secret ninja baseball skills such as running hard out of the box after contact.

3-1 scrubbies.

That is a shocker. I don't know what the fuck his problem is. He used to like playing baseball.

He'll reveal shortly that he actually hasn't had knees since the year before he signed with the Cubs, which will totally explain why he needs 'slow starts'

The fast twitch muscles in his hamstrings have never been the same since he was hurt in Center Field in 2007.

Against playoff contenders on the road! Quade is the man! We're right back in this thing!

Wa-hoo! Next up, Q's Mighty Cubs attempt to match their season-high winning streak!

@jimcallisBA
Jim Callis #Cubs sign Garrett Schecht for $235k, highest bonus in 9th rd so far. Illinois HS OF, good lefty bat. Middle Tenn State recruit.
----------------------

ROUND 9 (279): Garrett Schlecht, OF (Waterloo HS - Waterloo, IL)
L/L, 6'2, 195, 18 years old
COMMENT: Two-way player in HS (LHP/1B)... Athletic defender and good hitter but with below average speed... Projects as corner OF in pro ball... Signed NLI with Middle Tennessee State...

10th rounder Danny Lockhart and 26th rounder Michael Jensen have agreed to terms with the Cubs according to their local papers. The deals are just awaiting MLB approval or something.

Thanks for the updates. That's a pretty penny for a 9th rounder.

Particularly one who doesn't seem to have fallen lower in the draft than would be projected for signability reasons.

Baseball America has added Marra to their list of signed.

AZ Phil's draft day info

ROUND 15 (459): Justin Marra, C (Michael Power/St. Joseph Secondary School - Etobicoke, Ontario)
L/R, 5'10, 185, 18 years old
COMMENT: Member of Canadian Junior National Team... Has shown strong arm and plus raw power in international competition... Has not yet signed an NLI, but plans to attend either Connors State JC in Oklahoma or Jefferson JC in Missouri if he does not sign pro contract...

Power hitting first baseman Paul Goldschmidt, was called up by Arizona
the other day....

Former major leaguer Daryle Ward replaced Goldschmidt on the BayBears' roster. Ward was signed as a minor league free agent Monday. He started the year with the independent league Newark Bears and hit .312 with 12 homers and 51 RBIs. Ward played with six major league teams, the last being the Chicago Cubs in 2008.

"Goldschmidt called up"--good, now LaHair can win the minor-league home-run crown.

So...Colvin sits a couple days because "It's a tentative situation for me just because I have two guys (Johnson and Jeff Baker) that do so well against left-handers, and I'm looking for at-bats for 'Bake' and Reed," says Mike Quade.
Yeah...better get Baker and Johnson at bats....whooooooooooo!

This is what you get with Clown 1 (Hendry) saying in the papers so Clown 2 (Quade) can read it that Fukudome was traded so Colvin could play everyday. Then Clown 1 doesn't enforce his decision over Clown 2, and the field idiot bats Colvin 8th where he has little chance to develop patience batting in front of the pitcher.

Seriously, you couldn't make shit like this up on your own.

Colvin might not be the problem, but he's not the answer, either. Developing patience batting in front of the pitcher...? Consider me skeptical.

clown1/2
---
"follow the rubber line to your seat"...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WylcyKGal-o&fe...

Squeeze the Wheeze.

"the field idiot bats Colvin 8th where he has little chance to develop patience batting in front of the pitcher."

Quade did say that he wanted Colvin to make the pitcher throw strikes, and therefore he would put him in the 8 hole.

I guess he meant that the #8 hitter has extra incentive to draw a walk, since the pitcher will bunt him over.

Anyway, where do you put a guy who gets one hit every ten at bats?

(Short answer: Tennessee.)

the field idiot bats Colvin 8th where he has little chance to develop patience batting in front of the pitcher.

Huh? That is the best place possible to develop patience. Teams don't want to throw the #8 hitter strikes knowing the pitcher is coming up after.

I would be more excited about a hitter who didn't need to learn patience and already had a good command of the strike zone.

Can somebody who's bored please submit the entire Cubs roster in QBall nickname format?

Thanks in advance.

Bruce Miles collects them. Here's one set:

Manager Mike Quade went through every nickname in the book during one short span in today's pregame. We got: Lopey (Rodrigo Lopez), Dougie, Samardz, 'Bow (John Grabow, a new one), Russ, Cassie, Campy, Colv, Sori, Fuke and Snyds. Quade even referred to Astros manager Brad Mills as "Millsie."

These are the least creative nicknames I've ever heard.

There's also:
Z
Demp
Wellie
Marm
Marsh
Woody
Moni (Ortiz - snuck in an old Dusty classic)
Carp (at Iowa)
Sote
Ram/Rammie

And the coaches:
Stache
Hari
Riggo
BoDe
DeJC
Nealie

Z...

Or... if Quade is pissed "Mister Zambrano".

Those aren't nicknames. They are shortened versions of names to make it easier for a developmentally disabled person to remember.

I remember another great leader who did the same thing.

I'm not a great leader, but thanks.

post of the week winner ^^^

PWSullivan Tweet
Iowa Cubs lose on walk-off grand slam off Scott Maine, falling to 47-63. Furthest under .500 since 2000. It's a way of life.

Much of the AAA team is playing in the big leagues.. that forces lower-level players to the AAA team. The organization is in shitty shape. Don't let anyone convince you otherwise.

Hendry continuing to have a job is borderline criminal.

It's my opinion that at least 8 of these guys on the 25-man active roster shouldn't even be playing in the major leagues... that's approximately 1/3 of the active roster that can't play at the major league level- It's a piece of shit team and a piece of shit organization. I get angry every time I think about it.

I'll guess:
Grabow
Ortiz
Spellcheck
Hill
DeWitt
Campana
Lopez
Colvin

No? Just guessing..

Hey, HEY! Blake DeWitt is an important piece to a championship team.

Not sure why that matters to the Cubs, but anyway....

I disagree about the Iowa team. LeMahieu has gone ice cold while Jackson has been heating up slowly and Flaherty is still below .200. Castillo is on the DL. But this is a nice team now (the Camps and the Fernando Perezes are gone) and will do well. The pitching staff has been rounding into shape with Coleman, Struck, Rusin, etc., although Bush was brought in recently and has been ineffective. Maine got torched last night but has been very strong with ten saves. Iowa was weak earlier, hence the poor record.

They won't make the playoffs, but Jackson, Flaherty, LeMahieu and Gonzalez should be eligible to return to Tennessee for the Southern League playoffs, so that should be fun.

maybe Quade could help them play better at Iowa.

I always wondered if it was better to promote a player in mid-season to another level in the minors or let them stay at the same level and accumulate some stats. For instance, Lemahieu (sic) was leading his league in batting average and was promoted to the Cubs and then put at Iowa. Wouldn't it help his development if he was placed back at AA and actually won a batting title. Wouldn't that help his confidence, look good on his resume, be something he could tell his grandchildren about, etc. I'm just wondering and I realize each player is different, but I always thought letting them has some success instead of moving up for uncertain results might help development more. Vitters for instance has never really had any sustainded success, because as soon as he starting hitting even a little bit he was moved up. Too quickly in my view.

Traditionally the Cubs have always had horrible approaches with prospects. They also seem to care about actual "production" less than any franchise in baseball. So when they invest a high pick in a guy like Vitters. He's getting pushed thru to justify the FO picking him. Whether deserved or not.

On the flip side, a guy Like Marquez Smith won't likely ever get a real shot. Simply because they hype train has never gotten behind him.

My only hope is the new GM will be much less limited than the current GM.

One problem with that hope - the current GM is still here, and there is NO indication that he is going ANYWHERE! I share the same hope, but am growing increasingly pessimistic about it...

Vitters has been maintaining a .275-.280 BA with very little fluctuation for about a month now. He's in double-A, he's been there all season so he's leading the team in at-bats now, he has double-digit home runs and fifty-plus RBI--and he's 21. He's right where he should be.

A .314 On base and a .751 OPS to go along with a glove that probably isn't going to stick at 1st base?

He'd be in Daytona if he wasn't the 3rd overall pick.

What OPS would be acceptable from Vitters at AA?

I guess I can care less what it is in AA.

I sure as heck don't want his current production anywhere near Chicago.

Don't worry, his current production is not going to get him to Chicago. Notice that the Cubs didn't trade Ramirez or Pena.

But I would keep a player at the highest level he could hit .275. Jae-Hoon Ha was promoted to Tennessee for the second time this season in mid-July when Jackson and Flaherty moved up. Ha struggled, and last Friday he was hitting .231. Last night he went 3-4 with 3 RBI and is back up to .259. It's cool when you can show resilience at double-A at the age of 20. I have no problem with the Cubs throwing guys in the pool and seeing if they're able to swim.

It seems to me that the Cubs prefer to move a guy up midseason when they're in a good run, a la every Vitters promotion. The concept must be to increase the level of competition when the hitter is locked in, rather than have them start up from scratch. Maybe Vitters is the only good example of this, but I feel like I've seen it with a lot of other prospects, too.

Catro, Flaherty, both Jacksons, McNutt, Szczur are recent examples.

He looks great too! A few years ago looked like he was pushing 230.

Who all do we have to fire again?

winning...plushdamentals.

Tony Plush
xPDMTL = (Sp + SuT + 2BB + SG) * PF (Sp=Speed + SuT=Stand-up Triples + 2BB=2-base Bunts + SG=Sweet Glove) x Plush Factor
5 hours ago

colvin hit the fuq out of that ball. wow.

landed a little before the river and bounced into the river

Looks like his timing is off to me.

Can't wait to see Dewitt tomorrow night

sadly, a winning streak is about the worst thing this organization needs right now.

And beating the darling of the summer.

But 2010 showed Quade can ruin draft pick ranking better than most.

They did manage to lose that last game of the year to the stupid Astros. That was smart.

Five HR's. Is that a season high to go with the win streak?

Brett Jackson leads off with a HR on his 23rd b-day, McNutt pitching on his 22nd birthday, 4 IP, 1 ER so far

Though technically they're not our top two prospects anymore... I wonder when the last time a team had their top two prospects with the same birthday.

Who are the Cubs top two prospects?

B. Jackson and Szczur.

...I can see that...ok...sure
So we'll probably see Scott Moore and Matt Camp in September then?

Co-rrect-a-mundo.

Camp is at Tennessee now, where he was just suspended, mysteriously, for the second time since being demoted.

Amended....so Scott Moore and Lou Mantanez?

........and Vitters has two walks in 3 PA's tonight.

Noticed, that. I guess he wanted to get his August allotment out of the way.

Why can't he just take more pitches?

In other news cats sleeping with dogs....day is night....black is white...

re the ongoing Garza vs. the farm system discussion

Chirnos is 5/29 with a 172/250/207 line in 32 PA's

and has allowed 2 wild pitches and somehow 13 SB against just 1 CS in 66 innings which seems like a lot. Could be the pitchers and the teams they played too, read something like Yankees stole 11/12 off him in one series.

on the other hand Archer has put together 4 of 5 decent to good starts including 7 shutouts innings against Tennessee on July 27th

It's interesting to me that the D-Rays, with a winning record, play their kids in July focusing on next year, and the Cubs are sticking with all their veterans.

Archer's ground ball tendencies seem to be a thing of the past. I wonder if at some point we'll hear the rest of the story on that.

have they been, other than Jennings? who I think just replaced Fuld and that was just a matter of time.

Chirinos hasn't played much since the call-up which was just because of an injuries I think

not that I don't believe they are way smarter than the Cubs and would be smart enough to do those things, most of their team is kids anyway.

a little surprised they didn't move damon, figured Indians would want him more than Fukudome.

Compare Chirinos's PT to Castillo's. They couldn't find any takers for Damon, and the Indians needed an outfielder (or two).

Your comment was based on comparing Chirino's PT to Castillo's? That's stupid.

The Rays have John Jaso and Kelly Shoppach as their catchers. Jaso went down with an injury on 7/14. Rather than call up Chirinos, the Rays first called up Jose Lobaton from AAA. Then Lobaton gets injured three days later and they call up Chirinos.

So yes, Chirinos has 32 PAs on the year because the team's #1 and #3 catchers are both injured and he has split time with the #2 catcher for two weeks. So that's not at all comparable to the Cubs and Castillo.

I think he was comparing how much chirinos played once called up compared to Castillo who unnecessarily sat when he was called up. That being said, you'd have to see how long each was up and compare PA's and innings, but I suspect chirinos has a played just a tad more. Still, a tenuos example for his broader point IMO.

That's fair enough (besides the mistake about PT), but we saw the same thing with Guyer - up for three days, started two of them, and they traded Garza rather than putting Hellickson in the bullpen for two years.

Does this also put to bed the thought that the Rays viewed Chirinos as solely a backup?

Unless you're not a fucktard, then when the #3 catcher gets called up, he would play more than the #4 catcher. In Castillo's case, he's actually the #2 catcher, because Hill is so bad.

So you think that the there's no difference between the Rays giving Chrinos 32 PA's behind Shoppach and the 13 for Castillo behind Hill?

It's cool that you have this little stalker relationship with me, and all. But try not to be so fucking stupid when your doctor sees that you've snuck back on the internet again.

Ah TRN. Such a classy dude.

I don't know how it works in your circle jerk commune, but in the rest of the world, when you call someone stupid, and illustrate it by being wrong, that person is going to call you out on it. Seriously.

In case anyone besides my two trolls cares, here's the game logs of the two people in question. Remember the reason that Castillo was allegedly sent down despite winning the job over Hill in ST is so he could get more starts:

Castilo was up for 18 days.
http://espn.go.com/mlb/player/gamelog/_/id/29...

Chirinos has been up for 16 days.
http://espn.go.com/mlb/player/gamelog/_/id/29...

The fourth string catcher on the competitive team has gotten more than twice as much PT as the "third" string catcher on Cubs.

Why don't you two vocation school dropouts just make a resolution not to reply to my posts, if this is the best you can do? George Altman and I came to the same agreement, with no problems.

TRN, years ago I had a minor argument with you, don't even remember over what now, but was no biggie. I hardly ever post but read every day, and I gotta agree with you on this one. Whatever compels people to automatically reply to your posts with "I know you are, but what am I" gets really tedious. Seriously, sometimes I wonder if a small, but highly annoying, portion of TCR contributors are getting back at the world for all the times they had their books kicked out of their hands in middle school.

... and the more we read, the more we are all increasingly aware of the sheer genius whose presence we are graced with... such class. such dignity. such respect.

Careful, TRN. One by one, you are convincing us not to engage you. Soon, you might as well start your own sight, and run it like Al Yellon...

Hey, I am all for conversation Jace. Intelligent, though-out conversation. If you can't do that, don't engage me. I am going to condescend to you if you repeatedly show an inability or are unwilling to apply logic to your ideas.

Rob and I were having a perfectly reasonable conversation when the Troll Boys decided to jump in. Posts like yours just encourage them.

I think we all can agree it's not anything anyone comes here to read.

I am all for conversation Jace. Intelligent, though-out conversation. If you can't do that, don't engage me

LOL. You at least always make me laugh.

Whatever compels people to automatically reply to your posts with "I know you are, but what am I" gets really tedious.

right... it's my posts that encourage them. Nothing you just did or ever have done encouraged them. So you are the "victim" here.

I honestly don't know what you're talking about. Did you say something demonstrably untrue, or extremely unlikely, and then repeat it like some sort of mantra again and again without considering that it could, in fact, be untrue? I tend to group some posters together based on their typical lines of thought and blindspots.

In case anyone besides my two trolls cares

This has nothing to do with facts and who is right or wrong... it's about this: A person who is a regular jerk and d-bag to other people will inevitably rub people the wrong way and make enemies. It's about learning how to disagree in respectful ways. When you do this, you don't piss everyone off and as an added benefit your arguments become more persuasive. You're a smart guy and I am confident that you will one day get the hang of it.

It has to do with a handful of people who are always right about everything the say or think, regardless of what mathematics and logic would indicate. Find one example when I said something in a disrespectful way the first time I replied to someone (assuming it isn't something we had already debated).

If you don't want me to call you a fucktard:
A. Be correct, or at least have some position you can debate with some sort of merit.
2. Don't troll me, doing things like taking things out of context to try to win mini-points in your troubled mind like Wiscgrad has been doing.

I don't know if you guys think these trolls, or counter-trolls (if you think of me as one) are some sort of internet police, and you like them being cockheads, but it's clear they're just being dickheads and you're encouraging them. For me, I come here to shoot some shit, to get some info, to give my opinions on stuff, and to debate things.

Very rarely if ever do these two "police" trolls contribute any original ideas or jokes or anything of merit to TCR.

I think the point is, you don't have to call someone a "fucktard" if you disagree with them.

Find one example? How about just a couple of days ago? I was having a perfectly good discussion with another poster and you - who have a stalker relationship with me - chimed in with this beauty:

http://www.thecubreporter.com/2011/07/21/levi...

So suck my balls.

Careful, TRN. One by one, you are convincing us not to engage you. Soon, you might as well start your own sight, and run it like Al Yellon...

---

LOL. I'm all for that.

I think this is a good point about the Rays and the differences in the two divisions.

If the Cubs played the last few years in the AL East, they'd have been out of it by, like, June 1st. This would have to drive some different front office decisions.

It's the whole 'rising to the level of competition' theory. Good teams breed other good teams, and shit, apparently, breeds shit.

Is this where we start talking about realignment??

The Cubs have been out of it by June 1st the last couple of years in the NL Central.

*sad face

I don't know why people keep bringing up that trade, I thought that the naysayers had proved all of the guys the Cubs gave up are sure fire future Hall of Famers.

And you a-holes wanted to trade Soriano.

That's what she said.

BTW went to McCartney show last night.
Was awesome.
Bought tix from street scalper sat row behind Bartman seats.

Great, great show.

I hope to be rocking like Sir Paul when I'm 69.

or even 64

Well played, well played.

I also went to McCartney show. It WAS amazing. I'm grateful to live in a world where there are such wonderful things. What a great talent, what a stellar performer -- Paul playing Hendrix's "Foxey Lady", then talking about going to a Hendrix performance in London where he was still largely unknown -- Hendrix played a concert on the Sunday after the Beatles released Sgt. Pepper on the previous Friday -- and Hendrix played a cover version of the song "Sgt. Pepper" live that night, just two days after the album was released. He (Hendrix) also spotted Eric Clapton in the audience and asked him to come up on stage and tune his guitar.

Wrigley is a great place to see a concert.

Speaking of catchers, there's an interesting one at Boise: Rafael Lopez, drafted in the 16th round in June out of Florida State. Has shown some (lefty) pop with 4 home runs, and is hitting third in the lineup. Has thrown out 11 of 22 base stealers. He's a bit old (23) for his level, but like I say, just drafted. They would probably like to find a spot for him at Peoria, where Gibbs and Burruel are currently residing.

In how many at bats for the 4 long balls?

I only ask because I feel like so often in the system (and maybe the draft?) we collectively grasp at straws so badly.

4HR by a guy who's admittedly "old for" Boise, does not in the least bit pique my interest.

Not grasping at straws, grasping at a lefty-hitting Cub catcher with pop.

First since Rick Wilkins?

Todd Hundley had plenty of pot.

Oh you said "pop"

Nevermind.

God I pray Heyman is wrong, he thinks Quadendry will be back in 2012 due to "injuries in 2011."

http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/2011/writers...

On Yahoo was an article about a child pornography ring that got broken up today, so this isn't the most depressing thing I read. 300 days out of the year, though, this would be the winner for sure.

This is absolutely terrible, probably true, and made me actually LOL.

Oh My Gosh! Was Sandberg injured in 2011? Is he okay?!!?

Mark Prior is a little accident prone-

http://www.chicagotribune.com/sports/breaking...

matt stairs retires...baseball loses a pretty fun dude.

Now who are we going to sign to backup Pena if Baker gets hurt in September???

odd.

c.morton gives garza 3 inside pitches in a row...very very inside. wonder wtf is up with that...

...then he works his way to a strikeout.

colvin ejected...hyped up as hell on the called strike 3.

...and there goes quade

chris resop upset enough to have the catcher console him and pitching coach talk to him...shed a tear, even.

both starting pitchers have worked amazing games to a 0-0 top 8...resop comes in for morton and gives up a HR and a double to the first 2 batters.

...K's aram following for the 1st out of the top 8th

another three hit game for Castro

and what's looking like the 12th out of 21 start by garza where he gets 2 runs or less of run support...maybe he'll get that 5th win =p

He's probably less happy about the trade than I am.

So are you saying a shitty team shouldn't trade a a third of it's top prospects for a #3 stater to push them over the last place?

actually, i'm saying suck my balls...garza 4evuh suckuh.

woooooooooooooooooo!!!!

go cry over a big ol' glass of archeraid.

woooooooooooooooooo!!!!

glad we could clear that up, ma'am.

actually, i'm saying suck my balls

----------------

Post of the year

Brenley on Bob Davidson
"how does this guy still have a job?"

Ata boy Double B.

You should have heard Moreland. He said something like the guy is an idiot and doesn't have any thoughts in his brain.

"it's known that at least the Pirates contacted the Cubs at one point about Soto."

From Levine.

Thoughts?

I'd be fairly interested in seeing what they (or anybody) were talking about offering.

I think it's fair to say we wouldn't get full value for Soto at this point. His low BABIP retards his value, even to the retarded GM's like ours.

Hendry won't trade in the division anyways unless he is getting a steal in his favor.

He is still under the delusion that a "healthy" year is gonna make us winners next year and you can't help the competition if you still think your team is awesome.

Now I even hate this team when they win.

Me too, which is very sad. Though I prefer to win when it arises from performances of players that could be part of a future core, like Castro, Marmol and (yes, I admit it is possible) Garza.

Minor-league tidbits:

Junior Lake stole his 30th base last night.

Hoilman hit his NW-league-leading 11th.

Loosen promoted to Daytona.

Nelson Perez back at Tenn.

With two singles and a walk last night, Jackson's line at Iowa is now .268/.384/.521/.905.

Kyler Burke has this nice pitching line at Boise:

27.2 innings, 23 hits, 9 walks, 25 strikeouts, 1.16 WHIP, 3.25 ERA.

Kyler Burke will be eligible for the Rule V this year, I think. I kind of doubt the Cubs bother to protect, although it's possible they will. Seems like there might be a way outside chance someone selects him.

Submitted by Charlie on Thu, 08/04/2011 - 9:40am.
Kyler Burke will be eligible for the Rule V this year, I think. I kind of doubt the Cubs bother to protect, although it's possible they will. Seems like there might be a way outside chance someone selects him.

=================================================

CHARLIE: Kyler Burke was eligible for the Rule 5 Draft for the first time last year, and so he is eligible again this December.

Despite the promise he has shown so far, I doubt very much that the Cubs will add Burke to 40-man roster post-2011 (they'll add Jeffry Antigua before they add Burke).

Presuming he continues to progress and improve, the bigger question is what will they do post-2012, when Burke can be a Rule 55 Minor League Free-agent (Six-year FA)? The Cubs probably won't want him to just walk away after all they've been through with him, so they very well might add him to the 40 post-2012--even if he hasn't progressed past Daytona--just to keep him from becoming a Minor League FA.

FWIW:

CUBS MINOR LEAGUE FREE-AGENTS POST-2011:

NOTE 1: A 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.

NOTE 2: 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.

ELIGIBLE TO BE ARTICLE XX-D MINOR LEAGUE FREE-AGENT POST-2011:
Brad Snyder, OF

RULE 55 SIX-YEAR MINOR LEAGUE FA:
James Adduci, OF
Marco Carrillo, RHP
Robert Coello, RHP
Angel Guzman, RHP
Dylan Johnston, RHP (ex-OF)
Bryan Lahair, 1B
Mario Mercedes, C
Scott Moore, INF
Jonathan Mota, INF
Chris Robinson, C
Carlton Smith, RHP
Alvaro Sosa, RHP
Jeff Stevens, RHP
John Urick, 1B (player-coach)

PREVIOUSLY RELEASED - MINOR LEAGUE FA UNLESS SIGNED BEYOND 2011:
Adrian Aviles, LHP (previously released by LAD)
Dan Berlind, RHP (previously released by MIN)
Austin Bibens-Dirkx, RHP (previously released by SEA)
Dave Bush, RHP (previously released by TEX)
Carlos Figueroa, INF (previously released by COL)

========================================================

CUBS MINOR LEAGUE FREE-AGENTS POST-2012:
Adrian Aviles, LHP (unless signed beyond 2012)
Dan Berlind, RHP (unless signed beyond 2012)
Austin Bibens-Dirkx, RHP
Kyler Burke, LHP (ex-OF)
Matt Camp, IF-OF
Steve Clevenger, C-1B (likely to be added to 40-man roster post-2011)
Carlos Figueroa, INF (unless signed beyond 2012)
Marwin Gonzalez, IF-OF (likely to be added to 40-man roster post-2011)
Blake Lalli, C-1B
Oswaldo Martinez, RHP
Blake Parker, RHP
Nate Samson, INF

7 Pages?

This must be a TCR record for one Header, right?

I can't remember one longer during the last 8 years.

ROB G must be on vacation?

we're part of internet history here...sit back and soak it all in.

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