Winter Meetings 2011 Day 2

Unfortunately I won't be around my computer much today to keep up on the rumors, but feel free to bombard the comments. I won't be on twitter much either to update the right sidebar, so it's up to you guys, although Cubnut may be on twitter some to keep that going.

Latest Cubs news is that they did offer Albert Pujols a contract, one considerably shorter than the 10-year offer the Marlins gave him, but likely for a much higer average annual salary. The Cubs seem to have the same mindset about Prince Fielder, preferring a shorter deal with a higher average annual salary than the 7-8 year deals that are being rumored.

Happy Rumoring!!

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After the Sergio Santos to Blue Jays trade, Kenny Williams allegedly said this is the start of rebuilding. Danks, Quentin, Floyd among others in play...

http://www.bucsdugout.com/2011/12/5/2572470/r...

takes a long time to load, but Rule 5 preview

Flaherty, Rhee and Gonzalez are the Cubs mentioned.

Espn reporting sources close to Zambrano have said Carlos more willing to com back to Cubs "now that Hendry is gone".

HAHAHAHA!

Will Theo be more willing to take him back now that Hendry is gone?

Sure why not what is the downside?

It was a joke. Carlos is more willing to come back? Now that Hendry is gone? I would think the question is more, is Theo willing to take him back.

I've always like the lunatic, myself, so I see no reason not too. Besides, Sveum is a big guy, too. He can handle him.

Sorry, I read too much into your statement and was answering the question why wouldn't Theo be willing to take him back. There is no downside for the Cubs in letting Z pitch.

I could see him being more willing now that Quade is gone. Hard to imagine being too angry at the guy who gave him his big extension, unless he just has a very short memory, or Hendry did something personally offensive to Zambrano.

"or Hendry did something personally offensive to Zambrano."

You mean like suspending him without pay for 30 days?

He was out of control.

Yeah, he sent a text about being unhappy at work.... too bad we couldn't just line him up for a firing squad.

He texted his retirement, supposedly.

But I thought it was funny that he was mad at the guy who enabled up to that point and gave him a sweet contract.

lol. How quickly I forget. I blame the suckitude.

The Cubs' interest in Rockies third baseman Ian Stewart has waned, according to Thomas Harding MLB.com.

Thank you Theo. I still can't figure out why some of you (ROB G, et. al.) have a chubby for Stewart. Its a total "meh" move, imo.

It's pretty simple- Because he always seems to kill me on MLB The Show.

minor league numbers vs. how he swings a bat is my main issue.

he's a mistake hitter who pulls the bat through nearly the same plane every swing.

he can smack homers and doubles all day on 20-25 year old AA/AAA/AAAA pitchers. good for him.

Sullivan: "Cubs manager Dale Sveum is looking to bring in longtime Tony La Russa crony Dave McKay as a coach."

Oh, no, now they're bringing in other people's drinking buddies!

It's pro-sports. If there's somebody in the biz you haven't met yet, you've probably still had your hand on his genitals while blindfolded at some point got a friend in common.

Speculation that if Marlins sign Pujols, that Cubs would be in mix to acquire current Marlins 1B Gaby Sanchez...

http://www.csnchicago.com/blog/cubs-talk/post...

Meh.

I'm not saying getting Gabby Sanchez wouldn't be a good move. It might be, but I hate the feel that the Cubs, a big market team with a big market payroll, are waiting around to snatch up players other teams no longer want. It's like the desperate wingman who picks up the ugly girl his better looking friend passed on...sort of.

like loney in LAD...he's not a guy you have unless you can make up that power elsewhere.

cheap option at 1st with decent tools all around, but he's more of a #2 or 5/6 hitter with his hitting tools...

i hate to play the "1st must hit power" thing, but a club needs power from somewhere and unless you're getting it elsewhere a guy like g.sanchez is a solid piece that doesn't elevate the team too much.

Sanchez? LaHair? Why not go with what you have in house if you're not going to try to get a significant upgrade.

I kinda think a lot of this talk is just reporters thinking out loud and they really have NO idea what Epstein and Co. are doing or thinking. The beat reporters haven't had any time to establish a relationship with these guys, and Epstein seems pretty tight lipped, even coy ("Pujol's agent is also Rodrigo's agent").

earlier tonight MLB Network broke a story about a sportswriter claiming the rangers had offered cj wilson 4/60m earlier that day.

nolan ryan was being interviewed at the desk at the moment it came in and laughed it off saying it was news to him...promptly dismissing it.

Yikes:

But Sveum did hint that David DeJesus could wind up as the Cubs' leadoff hitter, with Castro moving down in the lineup to No. 2, No. 3 or No. 5.

“As thing work out, if you want to call (DeJesus) the prototypical leadoff guy, he could be right now the way our roster stands,” he said. “But that’s something we’ll look at further down the line. He could be our fourth hitter, who knows?”

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

Hopefully, he had his tongue firmly implanted in his cheek when he said that last bit.

j.heyman tweet on the right says the cubs are in on the p.fielder situation...sweet.

"Jon_Heyman #cubs seem to be sincere player in #prince discussions. A few others still in. As well. "

----

"Jim Duquette of MLB Network Radio on Sirius XM Radio reports that the Mariners are not in on free agent first baseman Prince Fielder."

that's big news (for other clubs) if true because they're supposedly one of the heaviest bidders...ah, offseason...trust no one...

is brian roberts a cub yet?

"Steve Popper of the Bergen Record reports that the deal sending Angel Pagan to the Giants in exchange for Andres Torres and Ramon Ramirez is complete, pending physicals."

also, the mets signed F.Rodriguez to a 2 year deal and J.Rauch to a 1 year deal.

hell of a day for the mets bullpen...3 new arms in 1 day.

Frank Francisco, not K-rod

yeah...doh...rodriguez coming back to NYM would be a heck of a story in itself...

should have just copy/pasted that blurb, too...heh

I would've been very happy with 2/12 on Francisco. Underrated reliever.

Always likes Angel Pagan. One of the all-time great former Cub names.

Hendry dropped, or traded him (can't remember, too lazy to look up) after an unusual and prolonged stomach disorder. He had a bit of a "dl issue", but was a grinder, with speed to spare.

Traded back to mets for 2 minor league arms that turned into nothing. Shame we couldn't get Pagan and Dejesus together on the same team.

Never showed the speed much with the Cubs, or the hitting ability he's shown in NY, but I always hoped to see him succeed and was a bit disappointed when the Cubs traded him (for Doug Deeds, I think).

Ryan Meyers and Corey Coles. Think Deeds came from the Twins as the PTBNL for Craig Monroe.

Even worse. They were both out of professional baseball after 2008.

I guess the Cubs were saving money Pagan might've earned in arbitration?

Lou hated Pagan because he had Crones disease and Lou thought it was weak sauce.

Duquette on XM says he heard that there was some selfishness on Pagan's part and rubbed the Mets brain trust the wrong way.

Obviously Pagan didn't spend enough time with the Cubs to master the reverse chalupa.

Anytime Theo and Jed want to start earning their paychecks and do something about the awful state of the Cubs, that would be nice. Zero Cubs rumors, so either they're doing nothing, or they keep things much closer to the vest than Hendry ever did. Hoping it's the latter.......

Here's a pipe dream: What would it take to pry Hanley Ramirez away from the Marlins? He sounds unhappy about being upstaged, outpaid and moved out of position by Jose Reyes, and is asking to be traded. If the Fish sign Albert, maybe they'd like to clear out the $12MM/year they owe Ramirez for three more years. If you could trade for him, pretty much everyone other than Castro ought to be fair game. Would you move Castro to 2B or 3B?

I'd love Hanley, but moving Castro from short to make room for him doesn't exactly fit in with the new crew's defensive focus. I'm all for Hanley at third, though.

Who cares about Castro playing SS... he's not that good defensively.

Why would you want Hanley at SS then? At least Castro might improve. Hard to imagine Hanley getting better defensively at this point.

"Who cares about Castro playing SS?"

Castro and his agent.

The Cubs don't have much anybody with good baseball instincts would want, so any trade involving him would have to include Garza. You can't win without pitching, so it's a catch 22. I'm glad I don't have Theo's job. His new Lakeview house would be nice though.

I'd rather they go after Morrison and Gaby if they're dangling Garza. If they were interested in moving Castro from SS, theyd have made a run at Reyes.

Hoyer and possibly Theo were the ones willing to trade Hanley, I'm not sure they're fans of his attitude.

" I'm not sure they're fans of his attitude."

Either am I.

"Anytime Theo and Jed want to start earning their paychecks and do something about the awful state of the Cubs, that would be nice. "

Sometimes the solution takes longer than we would like.

And, unfortunately, part of the problem is that awful state of the franchise. It can't be easy finding takers for the guys Theo wants to move. And the free agent market is somewhat bottled up by the Pujols decision.

Hey, Voice of Reason! Long time no see!

Dangling D. Brown in talks to try and get Gio Gonzalez. not sure what else they'd give up, but good start.

Cubs would probably have to counter with Brett Jackson and another piece or two. Unless they can talk them into Colvin and Ha., which I doubt.

Best quote of the Winter Meetings:

"I'm betting it's Albert sticking with Cardinals, but I'll say this: whoever signs him, it's a terrible deal."
- Maury Brown

Like I said during last off-season when he rejected the Cards offer.... if the Cubs sign him our fans will gloat for two years, and the Cardinals fans will gloat for the next 98.

Pujols on a 10 year deal is going to make some GM envious of the Soriano contract Theo walked into. It's going to be a franchise crippler.

I can't think of any player, in any sport, that I'd do a 10 year contract on, with numbers that look like that. If I'm Albert, I jump on it. I hope he does. I'd like to see him out of the division.

So much for using Marmol to try and get Headley. They just traded for Huston Street.

Not sure there was ever a lot of logic behind "We cannot afford a $3 million third basemen, but we can afford a $8 million closer" anyway.

If they're going to trade Headley it will probably be next off-season with free agency looming, like the Gonzalez trade. Interesting how playing in that ball park retards his arbitration value, but not his actual value.... of course the Padres have to give that right back in paying their pitchers a little more in arbitration.

They were looking for a closer and Street makes about the same as marmol. Obviously the cubs would still need to throw in some good prospects.

But they didn't give up anything for Street... so essentially we can still make the trade, if Headley is going to be traded.

oh yeah, Headley is still in play for the Cubs. Marmol was just someone I thought they may want in the deal.

Vitters or LeMahieu, Colvin and Russell sounds about right. Padres probably want a bit more.

Part of the reason that they're supposedly interested in trading him is that they have replacement third basemen available in the minors, so I doubt Vitters or LeMahieu is going to be of particular interest to them, unless they like LeMay as a 2nd basemen.

didn't know they're situation, I know Rockies have a 3b-men they like instead of Stewart.

Pena turned down arbitration. Told you :)

Link in the twitter box,

Although Pena has turned down arbitration, it doesn't preclude him from returning to the Cubs as a free agent. President of baseball operations Theo Epstein and agent Scott Boras talked about Pena at the general manager meetings in Milwaukee on Nov. 15. At the time, it appears they agreed that the Cubs would offer arbitration in order to get a draft pick and Pena would decline.

The reason is because Boras represents Pena and superstar free agent Prince Fielder. It makes sense for Boras to have the Cubs' market open to bid on Fielder and also to be able to get a larger contract with the Cubs or another team after Fielder and Albert Pujols set the market for free-agent first basemen.

Levine posts another rumor, with Ian Stewart apparently still in play. Instead of DeWitt, Colvin's name now appears to have come unto consideration.

http://espn.go.com/blog/chicago/cubs

Stark reporting cards match Marlins 10 year offer to Pujlos

Which do I want more? Albert out of the division? Or the Deadbirds to have their franchise fucked over by a contract that TRN rightly says will make the Soriano one look like a walk in the park?

If the Marlins don't get Pujols, they'll make a run at Fielder and drive up the price, so no Fielder to the Cubs, I assume.

I don't think players as good as Pujols age as poorly as regular players. Also heard cards deal would be front loaded. I'm sure he'll still be one of the best players in the league for the next 5-6 years. And cards have always figured out how to get cheap talent around their superstars.

He's the best pure hitter I've seen in my lifetime, which is one reason I want him out of the division. But I'm not sure about his age, and I wonder about his back, which has flared up in the past. Backs are a big problem when they go out, and he's a really big guy. I'm not concerned about steroids - I just don't think he does them.

I think, overall, I want him out of the division.

Dave Cameron at FanGraphs a few days ago made a pretty good case that Pujols is how old he says he is. Not bulletproof, but I'm likely to believe it at this point.

The BR comps for Pujols are below, listed with the last season age they had an average OPS+ compared to their career. There's a couple of guys to be hopeful on, but only 2 of the 10 beat the 36 Rob throws out there, and most of them were able to move down the defensive spectrum as their careers wore on, a luxury the Cubs, Marlins and Cardinals will not have with Pujols.

Foxx (31)
Griffey (35)
Robinson (33)
Aaron (37)
Gehrig (33)
Mantle (32)
Ott (33)
Juan Gonzalez (31)
Mays (40)
Manny Ramirez (36)

I am not just going by statistical track record, though. Pujols looks like he's breaking down. Maybe an off-season and the guaranteed contract will rejuvinate him, but I wouldn't bet my franchise's future on it.

I love it when what would be called in discussion forums as my unsupported hunches are supported by numbers that I'm way too lazy too look up. Thanks for the info.

And, again, didn't his back act up either last year or the year before? I actually don't trust the guy's size. He may end up being amazing at age 42 . But it's a long shot, and if he does, he'll be the greatest player who ever played. And if that happens, I say, Go Marlins!

well best players in the league might have been a bit of a reach, but I counted at least 5 that had OPS+ of over 140 at age 36 and I didn't even look through all of them.

Obviously, any deal of that nature is going to present challenges filling the rest of their roster, but I don't think it'll be crippling to them at all. And I think they'll be quite good for the next 4-5 years. Ultimately you never know, but I don't think it's a terrible bet for Cards as some imagine...plus revenues and salaries are going up.

They have 2 big arms coming up the system that are going to help offset that cost quite a bit.

also, it was a response to OAB that I would much prefer him out of the division.

I thought you meant like "MVP candidate every year", if you say All-Star or 900 OPS guy, I think there's a pretty good chance of that maybe up to 37 or 38.

A big part of it depends on how much annual value he gets too. If it's $22 million a year, that's one thing. If it's the $28 to $30 million that had been bandied around before, that's an entirely different story.

Just like Jeter last year, his value is worth so much more to the Cards than anyone else, it's hard to seem him going, especially for $22 million a year.

10/220M was last I heard, suppose we'll find out soon enough...

probably stay in MVP talk for next 3 years, maybe have one MVP-type rebound season in his upper 30's.

it's obviously not ideal for the Cardinals or any team, but if his age isn't a lie and his body doesn't completely breakdown, he's going to be one of the top 5 players of all-time.

Aaron and Mays are the two players who had the best late career OPS+ numbers. What a surprise!

Rumor is they'll go after pitching rather than Fielder.

Marlins?

yes:

BNightengale #marlins say they want Pujols and if he goes to #StLCardinals, will focus on pitching,not Fielder
about 1 hour ago ·

on that note, Heyman disagrees and says Marlins have already stepped up pursuit of Fielder on presumption Pujols is going to Cardinals.

Hey!Man! tweets that the Cubs are after Kuroda...

He'd be good to help ease Darvish into the swing of things.

You and your Darvish fetish.

I'd rather have Yu's wife or soon to be ex-wife

Huh? Links?

Rock into Japan as an American with $100 million, and you wouldn't have much trouble getting a girl like that. Darvish is supposed to be quite the movie star himself.

I think you're right. That said, I would still like to take Mrs Darvish home w/me

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