Jim Hendry Fired

This is one of those times I wish I could adjust the headline size so it could fill the whole front page.

Anyway, ninja Hendry finally bit the bullet as Ricketts wasn't kidding when he said a major announcement was coming. Hendry says he was informed as of July 22nd that he wouldn't be retained for next year.

"He never missed a beat; it's a credit to his character that we were able to operate the way we did and get the job done," Ricketts said. "We had the trade deadline coming up and I didn't think it made any sense to change horses in mid-stream."

Followed by this little quip...

Hendry, 56, said Cubs Chairman notified him July 22 that he wouldn't be retained. He indicated that was one factor in deciding not to trade away veteran players at the deadline, figuring he should leave those decisions to his successor.

That, along with just naming Randy Bush as the interim sort of defeats the whole purpose of keeping him an extra month, but who am I to question the reasonings of billionaires.

Hendry conveniently leaves with a 749-748 record as a GM, I guess the gift of a winning record is better than a gold watch. Ricketts says the search for the new GM starts today (shouldn't it have started on July 22nd?) and it will be a private process and be a search outside of the organization. And that the new GM will report directly to Ricketts, rather than using Crane Kenney as a buffer.

It's step one of the process and for that I am glad. Unfortunately, it's really step two of the process where the real excitement or possible dissappointment lives.

Comments

Playing "the kids" will probably help. No one wants to see Skinny Dick and Koyie Hill play, not even their mothers.

Along those lines, from Muskett:

Cubs pitcher Andrew Cashner, who threw 32 pitches in a live batting-practice session on Friday, is expected to begin a Minor League rehab assignment on Tuesday.

Cashner has been on the disabled list since April 6 with a strained right rotator cuff he suffered during his first and only start this season on April 5. Friday was his third live BP session.

If all goes well, the right-hander expects to be back with the Cubs on Sept. 1.

"That's what I'm shooting for," Cashner said. "[I want to] be ready to roll and ready to come right out of the bullpen."

Q-ball, "I'd love to get cashner in there but how am I suppose to sit Ramon Ortiz and grabow after all they've done for us."

I actually just threw up a little bit in my mouth.

Q-ball, "I'd love to get cashner in there but how am I suppose to sit Ramon Ortiz and grabow after all they've done for us."
---
actually Q-ball, now that his "inner voice" has been cut off from the Borg Collective has been stopped from having any thoughts.
Q-ball, "...background noise: Led Zep's, When the Levee Breaks..."

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xbJQT2eDseA

If Q-Ball starts cooking meth I wouldn't be surprised.

My wife volunteered me for my 10 year old sons football league.

I'm in charge of music at the stadium.

Heh heh

Any suggestions?

Classical.

WASP's classic 80's song, ANIMAL, F*CK LIKE A BEAST. Oldie but goodie and it always gets them talking.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6qKlZELdJh8

wonderful role model...great supportive mother, too.

Your 10 year old plays football in a stadium? He must be good.

Hs field, bit of an exaturation
Got compliments, got to play the Jam and the clash

For your half time entertainment

Wscr Dan Bernstein tweet

Crane Kenney is a tumor on the Cubs. Ricketts lets it become more vascular and potentially metastatic.
web • 8/19/11 9:59 PM

I think the time has come to stop worrying about what was and start worrying about what comes next. I don't know much about Josh Byrnes, so I looked him up.

I found this:

Carlos Gonzalez, Brett Anderson, Chris Carter, Aaron Cunningham, Dana Eveland, and Greg Smith to the A's for Dan Haren on December 14, 2007.

on wikipedia. Now, I was okay with the Garza deal, but this is insane...!

Anybody else scared of the Josh Byrnes possibility besides me?

i'm just waiting to see who it is before i even give a fuuuuuuuu...

i wanna know what's up with 3rd/RF/1st and 2 pitching slots...and how much money mr. unnamed has to work with.

it's not like there's a lot of system to trade away for anything that's going to be gold, but they probably can't fill all that without doing some trading.

whoever the GM is, they have a lot to do and the cubs should probably find out who it is and get them into the fold asap.

...also, i think josh b. made his bed with a slew of bad trades...as bad as that trade was, the trade that got rid of d.haren was also horrible. joe saunders for one of the best starters under a reasonable multiple-year contract...way to go. i dunno if anyone really wants him as a GM...at least i'd be shocked.

I'm sort of stoked that Ricketts seems interested in a sabre guy, even though I've often disputed the absolutes that some people put on stats. Good, old school scouting is still important, but Ricketts seems aware of this, too. His emphasis on player development, and shrewdly keeping Hendry around to sweet talk the draftees was another thing I was impressed by. I don't buy the argument that all the draft picks would have signed no matter who was in charge, as one columnist I saw suggested. I saw a report that Dillon Maples was landed specifically because of Hendry's college recruiter like sales job on the Cubs. That shows huge class on Hendry's part, doing that after being fired, and smarts on Ricketts' part for knowing Hendry had the kind of character to do that kind of thing.

I, for one, thought Ricketts was an idiot up until a few days ago. Instead, he's starting to look like a pretty sharp suit.

Yeah, Ricketts has changed a lot in the last few days!

i'm glad hendry is finally gone. and i'm not sure if my joy is anti-climactic or premature. it's only 1 move of a whole host of moves that need to be made.

crane kenney contributes nothing, and probably detracts from, the baseball operation. unless he miraculously pulls off a complete publicly financed wrigley renovation, he needs to be dispatched. if only to remove a potential roadblock for a genuine baseball president to interview and be hired.

quade is already a dead-man walking, no sense wasting words about it.

fleita has been around for eons. wilken has been around plenty long enough. they are both hendry guys. the only reason to keep them now is for continuity until the new full-time gm is interviewed and hired. then they need to walk the plank. i'm hoping ricketts' press conference vote-of-confidence is just as terminal for them as it was earlier this summer for hendry.

hendry's dismissal was the best well-kept secret i can recall. i am hopeful ricketts is playing possum when he says "the search can now begin". i am hopeful he has more good secrets, and will keep them well until september 30.

and then the demolition can truly begin. glad hendry has been dismissed, but it's only the first mile of the marathon.

also, good to see old-timers like manny trillo and 10 man jump in. all we need now is a little news from ruz.

imo, fleita (notoriously cranky, yet mostly fair...) and wilken are pretty good baseball guys and cubs guys.

quade/crane...meh, *shrug* whatever...don't care either way whether they stay or go. quade has his supporters, but there doesn't seem to be anything he does especially well as a manager aside from not looking/acting like he's out of his league or lost.

careful who you call an old-timer, old-timer! ;)

I'm not your buddy, pal!

I'm not your pal, guy!

Not your guy, friend!

this is old news (about the suspension) but the specific drug (methylhexaneamine, a stimulant) that got Cubs AA catcher, Luis Flores suspended, was reported in this link.

Luis Flores, playing with Double-A Tennessee, was suspended by Major League Baseball for 50 games after testing positive for Methylhexaneamine, a banned stimulant found in some energy drinks.

http://www.pjstar.com/sports/chiefs/x27447673...

some info on the methylhexaneamine...

http://drugfreesportrec.blogspot.com/2011/03/...

Ugh. These kids need to stay away from both energy drinks and the unregulated supplements. Maybe the Cubs need to install some offseason curricula on GNC and the drug testing policies. (They could create a course on hydration and energy while they are at it.)

they took away their adderall. everyone is sad...except the 10%+ of MLB that has a prescription. =p

Here's a reason why I think we should all be talking about how strangely unproductive Marlon Byrd has been:

Colvin's R/PA in 2011: .0696
Byrd's R/PA in 2011: .120

Colvin's RBI/PA in 2011: .101
Byrd's RBI/PA in 2011: .062

Colvin R/PA in 2010 and 2011: .130
Byrd R/PA in 2010 and 2011: .128

Colvin RBI/PA in 2010 and 2011: .130
Byrd RBI/PA in 2010 and 2011: .090

Meanwhile, Colvin has practically hit himself out of the majors, and Byrd's production hasn't been questioned by anyone in the mainstream media or in the front office. We could look at these numbers and say they are just runs and RBI, and absolutely agree that these often vary drastically, but I suspect that if we take a close look at Byrd's approach and what he actually brings to the table, we'll find that his batting average severely skews our perception of his actual value.

BP tracks RBI opportunities...how many runners you bring in that are on base

Byrd is at an abysmal 6.7% this year in driving other baserunners in, Colvin at a much better 11.2%, although still sub-par.

Reed leads the team at 20% btw, out of the regulars, Ramirez at 16.7%, Castro 15.3%, Pena 14.1%, Barney at a very good 13.3% for a singles hitter

last year though Byrd was at 14.7%, Colvin at 14.0%

it's something that tends to fluctuate quite a bit, the most consistent hitters are those that hit for average(i.e don't strike out too much) and have power like A. Ramirez

I guess that is a more fair way of looking at it. Still, I'm awe-struck at Byrd's 2011. But I suppose that doesn't necessarily indicate that his overall game is as poor as I perceived it to be--he just hasn't driven in runs this year.

Colvin's skillset, I would argue, still proves him more offensively productive in 2010 and nearly so in 2011; they may have been close in driving in runners on base in 2010, but Colvin could drive himself in at any given time, and he also appears to be the better baserunner, and--remarkably--he's had a higher walk rate with the Cubs than has Byrd.

not sure about nearly so in 2011, production is also getting yourself on-base for others to drive you in

I'm not a fan of Byrd's or anything, he hits a lot of groundballs, that's gonna lead to double plays with runners on, doesn't really walk much. But he's pretty cheap and would be an okay #2 hitter(had OBP over .345 the last 2 years) and perfectly fine, #6, #7 hitter by a team not run by morons.

I think that's probably why I find myself so annoyed by him. He'd be fine as the #7 hitter and if he and Fukudome hadn't kept Colvin from playing time in 2010 and to begin 2011.

I think we can all agree that he's not the problem with the team. He shouldn't be batting 3rd unless he's in AAA, but he's still a really nice 4th outfielder or a "second division" starter.

graham hicks (from the t.gorz trade) back from the DL and on assignment in AZ...

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  • HAGSAG: I have not seen Joe Nathan out on the field, but he is supposedly at the UAPC. 

    Arizona Phil 1 min 55 sec ago view
  • ERIC S: Best outing I've ever seen from Manny Rondon, and I've seen most of his outings since the Cubs got him from the Angels. 

    M. Rondon is competing with six others (Dylan Cease, Bryan Hudson, Jose Paulino, Pedro Silverio, Jesus Castillo, and Erling Moreno) for a starting slot at Eugene, and (as you can probably tell from the EXST box scores)  the competition has gotten fierce over the last couple of weeks, With the exception of Moreno, the Eugene SP candidates have upped their game lately, and M. Rondon's outing yesterday was especially impressive/dominating. 

    Arizona Phil 4 min 29 sec 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.  

    Of course now he has to avoid a recurrence of the lat strain (whch he has had previously in his career) as well as all of the other miscellaneous physical problems he's had over the last three years (hamstring, quad, back, etc).  

    Arizona Phil 14 min 20 sec ago view
  • PHIL: Any movement on P. Johnsons pitches? What was his "out" pitch? I know he was working on a 4th pitch, so wondering what he is looking like these days. Thanks.

    The E-Man 57 min 8 sec ago view
  • AZ Phil, has Nathan showed up in Mesa yet? Thanks.

    Hagsag 5 hours 42 min ago view
  • Eickhoff looks like a good young pitcher. Lets steal him!

    Hagsag 5 hours 43 min ago view
  • Manny Rondon faced 13 batters ... and got 10 to K. Not a bad day's work.

    Eric S 15 hours 24 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 18 hours 22 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 18 hours 34 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 18 hours 43 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 18 hours 49 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 19 hours 7 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 19 hours 43 min ago view
  • Bryant and I believe Zobrist both did that too.

    johann 20 hours 1 min ago view
  • Soler BB acumen and plate awareness is excellent. Not unusual for even the best players to react as if they were about to hit them, "even though they weren't that close" from your vantage point sitting on your deck, or wherever.

    The E-Man 20 hours 3 min ago view
  • soler vs inside breaking balls is scary.

    he's had 2 inside curve balls today where he reacted as if they were about to hit him even though they weren't that close...one he bailed out of the box on, it was a called strike.

    crunch 20 hours 20 min ago view