Weekend Open Thread

I'd like to move on from the unfortunate business in the last thread of comments. So have it...

The only news I can find is Rafael Furcal headed back to the Cardinals on a 2-year deal, around $14M. The Brewers found their SS in Alex Gonzalez on a 1-year deal with a vesting option for 2013.

Bruce Levine and Wittenmyer both had articles on the Cubs new third basemen.

I liked Baseball America's take on the trade. Fangraphs and Baseball Prospectus share their thoughts as well.

Ho Ho Ho!


From the Twitters over on the right.

" Aramis Ramirez's agent, Paul Kinzer, said he is taking a "break" this weekend and hopes to talk again with #Brewers next week."

It's fitting that the lazy players agent takes a "break".


also, aram is screwed now that LAA is out of the hunt. MIL can basically name their price (within reason, of course) unless PHI gets bored.

Detroit? I thought they were interested?

yup, DET.

I think DET is already overloaded with DHs.

from fangraphs

"Colvin appears to be a decent defender in the outfield, though it is hard to be certain given his limited chances, but overall he appears to be an upside candidate quite similar to Stewart — he’s coming off a rough year, but is still young enough to turn things around. Colvin, however, lacks the minor league wow that Stewart brings. And, more frighteningly, Colvin compares incredibly favorably to another outfielder who has power, hates walks, and defends well: Jeff Francoeur."

if colvin could field...and especially throw...anywhere near francoeur's skill level he wouldn't have too much issue finding someone to give him a shot in RF as a full time player as long as the power stuck around.

i can understand comparing bats, but that's where it ends.

Yu Darvish please.

i hope they do something...it's a pretty boring team as it stands...seriously lacking some pop.

i'm still waiting on that BOS/SD compensation...i dunno what to expect at this point, though i'm not expecting a huge loss.

wish they'd go in on fielder...i understand not wanting to spend 25m on a 1st baseman even if he's one of the best...but this is a 130-150m club and they can carry that kind of guy...especially a 27 year old version of that guy.

why is everyone all of the sudden hoping the Cubs make a splash this offseason? Do you all forget how bad this team is?

The Cubs are a LONG way from being any good. Spending a ton of money this offseason makes absolutely no sense as it doesn't come close to fixing the team. This team is probably 3-4 seasons from being any good. So why sign someone like Fielder when it would just be a waste of his best years. It's not like the team is just missing a big bat.

Going after Darvish seems insane to. Fukudome was a disaster. DiceK had one good season and that was it. Is it really worth such a big roll of the dice? It will cost $50 million at least just for the posting fee. I just don't see that as being smart.

I for one would like to see the Cubs just call it a day, suck for 2 years and get really great draft spots. Obviously that is not much fun, but what else can you do? Its not like the team has any shot at the world series over the next 2 years.

I also think they should just trade Marmol and Garza while their value is good. A couple top prospects would be real nice.

Just my 2 cents. I don't consider myself an expert on the Cubs system, but it sure seems to me that we have a long way to go.

I tend to agree with you on Darvish. He may turn out to be fantastic, but the track record for Japanese players coming to the U.S. is not great and the posting fee alone for him is going to be outrageous.

Having said that, I don't agree with your thoughts on the next 2-4 years for the Cubs. The organization will be spending $130 - $150 million per year and they have a lot of money coming off the books over the next couple of years. There's no reason this team can't be competitive two years from now, and I don't think it's completely crazy to think they could sneak into the playoffs in 2012 with a couple of key signings or trades.

If you plan to compete a year or two down the road, you don't wait until then to start building the team. You do it over time. So even if you believe the Cubs are going to suck in 2012, it still can make sense to sign someone like Fielder now so he's on the team in a year or two when you think you can compete. Top tier players just aren't available all that often so you have to make a move when they are.

There are a couple reasons why Fielder makes sense:

- it makes us a potential dominant team in the Central for several years 2013-
- The Comcast deal will be ending fairly soon, and then this team will be able to compete on the same field with the teams that have seemingly unlimited payroll
- There are no other players in Fielder's level (other than Votto) in the next several years
- Its a big market team. Act like it.

I Certainly agree, that as is, this team will not be a championship contender for...who knows?

But Fielder changes things for the Cubs, and the balance of the Central.


Saying Fielder wouldn't matter is akin to saying we didn't need Sammy Sosa back in the mid 90's.

When the opportunity arises to get a cornerstone piece. You do what you can to get that guy. Much easier to build a winner when you have a legit #4 hitter in your lineup.

because this is a 130+ million team and 2013 isn't looking good for anything but pitching and bit of OF.

there's not much to "save up for" next year.

The thing is, going after Darvish..is that yuo have to bid $40-60 million for the posting...then spend $$ on the contract? Fuck..he'd better be Jim Palmer..Mike Mussina and Glavine rolled into one pitcher.

STL signs furcal 2/14m

This is fun...Yu Darvish vs Matt Murton:


OK, forget Darvish, let's sign Lee Jung Hyun instead. I think she might get called for the balk on that windup, but Bill Lee's got nothing on her ephus pitch.


The Jed just signed this pitcher from San Diego...


ESPN reporting that Ryan Braun tested positive for PEDs... http://espn.go.com/espn/otl/story/_/id/733827...

I used to hate Ryan Braun. No more.


haha! I just heard this on CSN Chi.


Are we still pretending Pujols is clean?

i dunno why he wouldn't....look what roiding pays.

oh well, he won't get to make a speech in his 40s about how awesome baseball was to him and how he's happy to be in a museum.

Lulz. I finally traded him from my keeper league this year. Sorry, JD.

HERO SQUAD encourages players to take PEDs. However, we do not encourage them to get caught. Ryan Braun will be fined by his fake team general manager for getting caught.

STL fans gloating over the braun thing seem to forget who their hitting coach is...and how many people he called liars (especially reporters) through the whole "denial" thing.

the "denial" thing...that's what came before the "have a professional coaching job and a standing ovation" thing.

Wow, it sure seems a lot quieter around here these days and the verbal abuse has dropped off considerably. What happened? The air smells cleaner, fresher... interesting.

The number of comments is sure to drop from 150 to 75 or so per thread without Neal and his sparring partner(s) for the day...

Rob - I've only been coming on for getting close to 3 years now. How many people have been banned since you started? Is Neal gone for good or is he e-mailing you daily to get reinstated, begging for forgiveness? By the way, Jayson Stark reported yesterday that TRN was linked to PEDs so that may explain the roid rage and his temper flaring up regularly like a pack of hemorrhoids...

Just curious - sorry if the questions are sensitive, PLEASE DON'T BAN ME!!!

You're fucking stupid!!!!

That's it. I'm trading The Joe for a can of Simoniz and an infield rake.

A new infield rake?

typical cub fan, over paying...

Nice post at Cubby Blue by Tim on Ryan Braun...love the Gopher in LF


Tribster, Sullivan's latest...


The Cubs must decide by Monday's deadline whether to tender contracts to the arbitration-eligible Hill, Jeff Baker, Blake DeWitt, Matt Garza, Geovany Soto and Randy Wells. Epstein and general manager Jed Hoyer have been mum, but Garza may be in line for a long-term deal, while the rest figure to be tendered with the possible exception of Hill.

Don't know about you but if Jedenstein offers Koyie Hill a (playing) contract I'm done with them.

things get a little more interesting...

"Ken Rosenthal of FOXSports.com reports that Ryan Braun tested positive for a prohibited substance, not a performance-enhancing drug."


"Rosenthal promises to provide more details in an article that will be posted later Sunday."

ahhh it's that MSG in the Soy Sauce problem once again

Anyone think HoyStein goes after Morales now that he is NT'd?

yes, but he won't be

Have you read somewhere that he has been non-tendered? I read that the angels planned on tendering him a contract.

Actually, my bad - I THOUGHT he was getting non-tendered (psychologically, I was hoping this I guess), but this is MLBTR's take:

Our projections have Morales earning $2.975MM in 2012 following his second trip through arbitration this winter. There has been some speculation that the Angels would non-tender him after landing Pujols, but they should be able to finding some trade interest. A number of teams could use a switch-hitting power hitter at first base (or DH), including the Rays, Blue Jays, Orioles, Indians, Brewers, Pirates, and Rangers.

[and CUBS]

if he does get NT then he's probably really busted and not rehabing well.

his upside vs. cost is pretty minimal....4-5m tops.

Jester Felix signs with the Indians on a minor league deal.


I know, right?

The Indians really went balls-out on that signing, huh?

Fuck you, Jerry Angelo.

And Caleb Hanie...

fuck you Marion Barber and the Bears defense...why change the way you're playing the last 5 minutes?

Well, this team (and the management) is getting what they deserve.

Going on the cheap with a QB that doesn't belong in the NFL.

An idiot for a running back, a fucking dickhead for an offensive coordinator, and just terrible game management.

Stealing defeat from the Jaws of Victory.

Good thing we have baseball to look forward to, er...Bulls?

All this, Jerry Angelo has been luckier then Tebow through his career. Time to lanch his senile ass.

Your Blackhawks say hi, how are 'ya?

The god damn prevent defense and running the ball over and over and over at the end pissed me off more than anything. Also everytime I see Martz call another pass with just 5 lineman protecting I yell sack then it happens. I'm either psychic or Martz is a moron and our line sucks. Debating which one.

I wouldn't mind this so much if fucking Martz would have had the shitty Hanie RUN some to open up some other things.

It makes the defense think. Like ours did towards the end of the game.

Again, the Marion "play" is just like "I Got a First Down" Williams, who dropped a touchdown pass that hit him in the hands.

Last year there was a debate here on how Jay Cutler was not that good by several of you (not me). He's only the most prolific passer they've had. Not saying much - but sadly the truth.

I hope you see the difference.

I think a large part of it is the massive overvaluing of the QB and massive undervaluing of the line. Lot of stuff got blamed on Cutler when he was doing everything he could and getting no help from his players (or from Martz). One of the biggest positives of Cutler I see was the ability to basically get in Martz's face and force him to change his play calling which is still only half successful.

Can we get one decent baseball writer in this town?

The Jockey tweets-

Marion Bartman.

about 1 hour ago · reply · retweet ·

If this was done in the NFC Championship - maybe.

This team, IF it had made it to the Playoffs, would have lost in the first game with Caleb Hanie.

Over now.

This will cheer you up, Ed OBradavich and Doug Buffone talking about the game-


Jacos, I have heard them many times. I can only imagine...FWIW, I have heard from someone who has had contact with OB, he is an A1 asshole. And, while roaming the sidelines used to give fans the finong other things.

Someone gave me the finong once. I was sore for a week.

That's because you didn't hold your mouth right.

Ha. That must've been it. Instinct tells you to tighten the muscles, but really you need to do the opposite.

finong < reverse chalupa



bunch of pics from AZ Instructs

The only reason I'm not livid over what's going on with the Bears, yesterday in particular, is because even if they made the playoffs, they're not beating the Packers. Last year was much worse because I thought they had a chance.

Has TRN tried to sign up with a different user name yet? He was always kind of entertaining when he went off his meds.

Recent comments

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  • from the Sunday Trib...

    Reliever Jason Motte waved as he left the visitor’s clubhouse at Miller Park on a golf cart en route to the airport to catch a flight to Arizona to start a rehab assignment.
    Motte has been on the 15-day disabled list since Aug. 24 because of a right shoulder strain, but there’s a possibility he could rejoin the Cubs if they advance deep in the playoffs.
    Motte is scheduled to pitch in simulated games and in Instructional League games in Arizona.

  • 8 in a row to end the year...let's do this playoffs thing.

  • shelby miller (ATL) finishes the season with a win, snapping his 24-game winless streak...because ATL bats are non-existent.

    3.02 era, 1.25 whip, 205.1ip, 171K

    6-17 w/l...ugg.

  • Totally independent of the Cubs winning or losing today, Dan Haren came into today's game having earned $2M of his potential $3M in performance bonuses for 2015. 

    By making the start (his 32nd start of the season) he picked up $500K, and he'll get the remaining $500K if he can throw at least 8.2 IP in the game (he was at 181.1 IP coming into the game, and he needs to reach 190 IP to get the remaining $500K), 

    It's a bit like the old "Bowling for Dollars" TV show, but of course Haren is actually "Pitching for Dollars."

  • holy crap, MIL is just...awful.

  • i think he's currently playing for the Santo Domingo Meths. he's an Adderall-Star player there.

  • I'm longing for a Neifi sighting.

  • if you have stable/fast internet you can stream with and you don't mind giving up $20 a month check out "sling tv".


    TBS, TNT, ESPN 1+2, etc...100% legal.


  • 68 pitches (50 strikes)

    love seeing that...especially with the batters doing very little with it.

  • Yeah, keep him off the playoff roster.

  • Or, he's looked exactly like Ted Williams.

  • Lately he hasn't looked like Ted Williams...

  • Reading between the lines on some of his comments he seems to know his longish swing doesn't play well with a man on third and two outs, and two strikes on him. I doubt a playoff adjustment is happening, just something he'll need to figure out next year. I have this odd feeling he will.

  • Mark Gonzales ‏@MDGonzales 4m4 minutes ago
    Bryant leads NL rookies in HRs (26), RBIs (99), 2B (31) and runs (86). Last rookie to reach 26 HR, 99 RBI, 31 2bs, 86 runs and 74 BBs?

    Mark Gonzales ‏@MDGonzales 4m4 minutes ago
    Boston’s Ted Williams in 1939

  • Surprised and bummed that Mark Buehrle is retiring. One of my all-time favorite pitchers. I think he could pitch for 5 more years.