Game 62 Thread - Garza vs. Porcello

The Cubs go for their 5th straight win at Wrigley and Garza tries to impress the Tigers into trading for him.

Tigers Cubs
Jackson, CF
*Campana, CF
*Boesch, RF
Castro, SS
Cabrera, 3B
*DeJesus, RF
*Fielder, 1B
Soriano, LF
Young, LF
*LaHair, 1B
Peralta, SS
*Clevenger, C
Laird, C
Barney, 2B
Santiago, 2B
Mather, 3B
Porcello, P
Garza, P

Mather was a last minute replacement for Stewart, whose wrist is bothering him again.

Return to Homepage

Comments

project .333 rolls on

caption contest-Theo and Demp

http://twitpic.com/9w3mhr

"This guy walking right in front here is going to kill your wife and kids if you don't accept this trade. That's the Boston way."

"The Dodgers want to trade for you, but you'll have to waive your no trade clause and also promise you'll never do that Haray Caray impression again."

"Jim Hendry is so fat..."

"If someone wanted to buy a bag of weed, where might they acquire that? Asking for a friend."

"I'm not sure where you heard that, but Detroit is a wonderful city. I'd totally live there if I could."

Detroit is actually pretty cool, hater. =p

"Detroit is right across the street from Canada, eh"

(John, have you seen hard core pawn? They are freakin' NUTS!!!)

It's nice to see a fan finally show up for a game, isn't it Demp?

"yeah, this is what the stands are going to look like come September after I trade you, Garza and Castro....oops pretend you didn't hear that last name"

clevenger is deceptively slow...it just looks like he should be faster with his body build. =p

that double took forever and was too close of a play.

doobles mashine

GARZA!!!

sac bunt success

Twitter verse saying some Rangers scouts at the game.

Advanced scouts for Tigers v. Rangers in 12 days?

More fun to think its about Garza.

The Baltimore Orioles had one of their top talent evaluators watching Cubs starting pitchers and Soriano on Wednesday night. Toronto, which is also watching the Cubs this week, could be looking for a bundle deal that might include pitchers and hitters.

http://espn.go.com/blog/chicago/cubs/post/_/i...

Surely Garza upped his price last night.

I guess he wants to stay here?

Alfonso Soriano bottomed out on April 23rd with an OPS of 420.

From 4/24 on, he has had a line of: .303/.361/.613 OPS: .974

It is unclear when exactly Soriano switched to a lighter bat, but it was at least by 5/13. Since that date, he has a line of: .304/.366/.725 OPS: 1.09

Overall his line for the season is now at: .276/.325/.505 OPS: .829

Obviously this could just be a typical Soriano hot streak, but it sure looks like he has somehow made himself somewhat attractive to a contender looking for a bat.

especially if Cubs pick up at least 90% of his contract

Well that is a given. No way a team takes Soriano unless Cubs pay the VAST majority of that contract. Or if they unload a really bad contract on the Cubs. Are there many of those left out there?

pujlos, werth,arod

The only good "match" i can come up with Lackey, and that's not until the offseason and only if Ortiz walks.

The reason he's still here is because no one wants him, money or no money.

Trading Soriano is nothing more than a matter of dignity at this point versus releasing him. Whether they release him or trade him, the Cubs will get very little in return and pay most of his contract.

Tigers could actually use him at DH this season, but certainly don't want him past 2012. Maybe if he's packaged with LaHair or Garza, the Cubs could get one top 10 worthy prospect from a team.

doobles, doobles, boiling tigers troubles

blarg...tie game.

joe mather is a hot mess at third

waaaay too many DET fans at this game...a lot like last night.

6-4, top 7th

From what I could hear through my open window, it was about 60/40 Cubs fans last night. I expect more Tigers fans at Thursday's game b/c Verlander and I know 5 people on their way from MI right now, lol.

I will place the over/under on Verlander strikeouts at 13 for Thursday.
If Stewart starts he will be lucky not to have four.

So I guess Geiger and Balaguert got over being overmatched. Big HR by Baez. Looks like I picked the wrong night to see the Chiefs. ("Looks like I picked the wrong time to quit sniffing glue!")

Nice,

Always good to hear an AIRPLANE reference. And, don't call me surely!

Cubs placed 3B Ian Stewart on the 15-day disabled list with a left wrist injury.

per Rotoworld.

Manager Dale Sveum said Triple-A Iowa third baseman Josh Vitters was not a likely candidate to be called up to the major league club but did mention infielder Luis Valbuena as a possibility. The Cubs will make the move official before Thursday afternoon's game against the Tigers.

http://espn.go.com/chicago/mlb/story/_/id/805...

Clearly the right call, if not only because Valbuena's OPS is 100 points higher.

I always feel good for a guy who's done long years at AAA and finally gets to be in the show, even if he's highly unlikely to stick around.

Uh...Valbuena has already had his shot in 2009-2010 with the Indians.
A .226/.286/.344 line will get you sent to AAA pretty quickly.

Oops, with Seattle too. I think I was on the wrong B-R page for him, I was only seeing minor league stats for whatever reason.

So Ian Stewart is going to AAA pretty quickly?

See above... he's on the 15 day DL for wrist issues.

See Dusty's comment on Valbuena's numbers, then look at Ian Stewart's numbers for the last two seasons.

Translation: Ian Stewart should be in AAA.

Don't feed the Crunch.

i.stewart does his own work and lets it speak for itself at this point.

m.cain (SF) going perfect into the 7th.

perfect through 8ip (114 pitches)

perfect game!

1st in "giants" history.

Great game...excellent defense!

"giants"?

the multi-city lineage...NY/SF and technically the NY Gothams from 1625 BC or whatever.

it's been 130 years either way.

http://espn.go.com/boston/mlb/story/_/id/8049...

"If I have a regret about the way we handled that offseason [after the 2009 season], it was that instead of being more patient and saying, 'We'll strike when the time is right,' there was a lot of pressure in the environment at the time to do something," Epstein said. "If I learned a lesson from the offseason, it's never feel the need to do something. If you're trying to avoid one move that you don't think is going to work out, don't then settle for a different move that maybe doesn't check all the boxes. Be true to the philosophy and understand the bigger picture. There's always another day to fight. You don't have to get everything done in one offseason just because of what's going on in the environment around you."

It is good to see that he willing to admit to mistakes and hopefully learn from them, but I also wouldn't expect the Cubs to go crazy this offseason either.

So he's glad he has an owner that has locked away the wallet? The 2009/2010 offseason explains away Lackey and Dice K.

What is the excuse for Carl Crawford and Adrian Gonzalez?

Sounds like a guy who is making excuses and blaming others for getting himself pushed out of Boston.

"So he's glad he has an owner that has locked away the wallet?"

The Cubs just out bid the Yankees and the rest of the major leagues to get Soler, so to say they have locked away the wallet is silly. Instead it appears that Epstein has learned that throwing money at a problem just to do something is not a good strategy. Instead he will make sure that whatever transactions he makes follow whatever plans he currently has. Sadly I am sure that he will still make mistakes, but I at least approve of this approach.

As for the rest it seems to me that you see what you want to see, and I bet I am seeing what I want to see.

9 years and 30 million dollars.

They gave out less than Bob Howry money to secure those services. And we still haven't seen a free agent at the MLB level get more than 15 million over 3 years since the Ricketts took over.

Of course that would not be part of the plan right now. I guess you missed these parts of the article.

'There's always another day to fight. You don't have to get everything done in one offseason just because of what's going on in the environment around you."'

[ ]

'As for his first season as president of the Cubs, Epstein says he is "putting an emphasis on the long term" as he starts the rebuilding process for a struggling club that is just 21-40, deeply entrenched in the NL Central cellar.

"We're at a different point in the evolution of this franchise," he said. "We're having to start some things from the ground level and build up. It's going to be a bit of a longer process."'

Signing big name free agents will take place once the team is ready to compete.

Most of that is code for going cheap.

Ground level
Long term rebuild
building around young players

That's the same things the presidents in Kansas City and San Diego say every year. It's what Frank McCourt used to say in LA.

Obviously Theo is a smart guy. He's got an Ivy league education. However he is getting WAY too much praise for "Building the 2004 SOX". Almost every single piece to that team was brought in by Dan Duquette.

Theo took over a team that had just won 93 games. He just tweaked around the edges. And benefited from having the 2nd highest payroll in baseball to support his decisions.

certainly that 2002 team was just a matter of time before they won w/o Schilling or Ortiz.

and 2007 apparently never happened with Pedroia, Papelbon and Lester.

or never winning less than 86 games

he's such a hack. Clearly he was being forced out of Boston and was desperate to land another job immediately because he hadn't made enough money and because of his poor track record would have such difficulties landing another job. If the Cubs didn't hire him, it could have been decades before another team took a chance on him.

I didn't call the guy a hack. He seems like a perfectly capable front office steward. I'm just not sold that he's some magical savior.

And the money issue is on ownership buying a team they couldn't afford.

Not Theo's problem.

aaronb translator:

"until he overpays himself for a free agent, the very thing that I chastised Jim Hendry for, he's no GM of mine."

I didn't mind that Hendry spent money. Largely his free agents worked out ok.

He just lacked in every other aspect of the job.

I didn't mind that Hendry spent money.

a bit of revisionist history I believe, you seemed quite vocal on his ineptitude of allegedly overbidding on Soriano, Fukudome, Bradley, etc despite 40 years of evidence that desirable free agents are nearly always overpaid.

Desirable free agents being overpaid is one thing, but the undesirable ones (like the three you mention) not only are overpaid but you can't get them out of the lineup and off the field, and then there's the cost of the lipstick.

but the undesirable ones

good call, the Cubs were the only ones pursuing any of them.

How would you have felt if they had signed Adrian Gonzalez? I know I would have thought - "wow, good player".

Free agency right now is a mess. These players want mega contracts so that as they age they can still make 20 mil a year or whatever. This situation is really not sustainable economically, any more than the housing bubble was. I actually don't blame Ricketts for waiting until he at least has a competitive team to add a good free agent to.

I get the Carl Crawford jab...sure.
Gonzalez? The .338/.410/.548 he put up last year was pretty good though yeah?

Come on... everyone was predicting AGonz to suck this year. Everyone thought that was a terrible deal, right?

Oh wait...

The Red Sox are going to regret getting Adrian Gonzalez.

/said no one

He's got a .730 OPS and is owed another 140 million dollars. They could have gotten Adam Dunn for 1/3rd of the money.

It just seems odd that Theo is blaming ownership in Boston for giving him too much money to spend. It's billed as Theo taking responsibility. Instead its an article about him blaming others for his failures.

He's got a .730 OPS and is owed another 140 million dollars.

Holy shit. Two mediocre months of one season clearly makes this a terrible deal.

His 2nd half of last year was also sub par. He's coming up on a full year of under .750 OPS production.

Hand and wrist injuries are killers.

His 2nd half of last year was also sub par. He's coming up on a full year of under .750 OPS production.

Stop making shit up.

He had a really lousy second half last year: .317/.404/.489 OPS: .893. Wait - that isn't lousy.

His line since the All-Start break last year is: .293/.363/.453 OPS: .816. Wait - that is slightly higher than .750.

OPS by month last year:
836
989
1185
949
819
977

I don't see a subpar second half.

Again - he has had a bad couple of months. Lets let things play out before he's called a bust.

A-Gonz is 30, and is struggling a little this year..he still has 35 RBI's and is leading the league in doubles.
He's also won a few Gold gloves at 1B. He's been an excellent player for the last 6 seasons.
Dunn is 2 years older, is not a good first baseman, and last year the Red Sox would have been crucified for picking up Dunn instead of Gonzalez.

That is a bizarre read of the article. Any sane person would read that as him taking responsibility. He is saying that fans, owners, the media, etc. were all clamoring for something and that rather than do a good job and make the correct, even if unpopular decisions, he failed (i.e. it was his fault, he is taking responsibility) at his job and made some decisions that he had not fully vetted. That is not blaming the owners.

And we all do that from time to time and hopefully we learn from it.

I am living in faculty housing right now and it is a dump. We really just want to get the hell out of this place. But if I buy a house too quickly without taking my time and investigating everything, I could end up with some over-priced piece of shit that I will hate for the next 7 years (i.e. a Crawford), or a house that ends up falling a part on me (i.e. a Lackey). So even though I really just want to do something NOW, I have to take my time and go through the process thoroughly just like I am perfectly happy here and have plenty of time to make a decision. If I bought something now and regretted it, it wouldn't be faculty housing's fault, it would be mine for letting the circumstances get to me and affect my decision.

That's a long analogy, but that's all Theo is saying. Theo is telling us that we do have money and COULD go out and buy some free agents now, but we need more than that. If he does that, we could hate the next house just as much as this one, or it could fall a part in a few years and we are back on the market, etc. So Theo is telling us that we are going to live in this dive for a year or two, but then when we do buy a new house it will be fantastic and one we will be living in it for many years to come. At least that's his plan.

speaking of, that's exactly the take the Boston writer seems to have taken from the twitter feed.

@alexspeier Epstein takes responsibility for #redsox abandonment of core organizational values (big $ free agents) at end of tenure

http://www.weei.com/sports/boston/baseball/re...

slightly different take than ESPN story

Adam Dunn once saved a puppy from drowning while hitting 3 HR's.

true story.

Nevermind. I'm staying out of it.

So he's glad he has an owner that has locked away the wallet? The 2009/2010 offseason explains away Lackey and Dice K.

what does Dice-K have to do with it?

I will repeat this over and over: if you or anyone else sits here and says you could have predicted such awful seasons from Lackey and Crawford you are lying. Yes there was some overpaying for the players but they were still consistently good players who were upgrades over what they had if they had maintained their #s (heck, even if the #s had dropped some). So he overspent some to upgrade two positions on a very good Boston team.

Yes, those players played awful since then, but trying to blame Theo for their historic levels of suck is pretty ridiculous. You can blame him for a bit too much money or a few too many years with the expectation there would probably be a drop off at some point due to age. You cannot blame him for their failures now.

Do you blame Hendry for the Soriano deal?

Who ever thought it was a good idea to give 20+ and 7 years to a Left Fielder who was turning 30 and who's only plus tool was speed?

Lackey was a #3 Starter in Anaheim. He was never much more than a Ted Lilly type of pitcher. Nobody could have guessed the injuries. However you had to expect some kind of regression going from AL West to East and going into that ballpark.

He was never Cliff Lee or Roy Halliday.

Hasn't it been confirmed over and over again that Hendry did not negotiate the Soriano deal?

numerous times that McDonough with Kenney's approval tacked on 2 years to the Cubs offer while Hendry was on a plane to get the deal done.

I did not support the Soriano signing because I wanted the team to rebuild. I did not feel we had enough of a core to warrant giving a bunch of money to a player I did not feel would get us over the top. I support overspending on a player if you are adding him to an already very good, potentially World Series caliber team.

In addition, Carl Crawford was a player who consistently had over 110 OPS+ and hit a ton of hits and Lackey was a pitcher who consistently had 115+ ERA+. Speed was not Crawford's only + tool and Lackey was not some reject pitcher. Yes, Theo overpayed. He overpayed for some good player who were an upgrade on a potentially World Series caliber team. You don't make deals in a vacuum and in the end if you need to upgrade a position somewhere you make do with what you have. I'm sure Theo didn't just sit down and say "oh boy I got a ton of money, let's overpay someone." There are other teams bidding and such. But if you feel you have a team that could potentially win it all with a few upgrades then if you don't spend then your criticism about locking the wallet down might hold water.

Theo payed star money to a player who was not a star but was still a very good player in both Crawford's and Lackey's case. If the Cubs had a team that could win the World Series and Theo brought in upgrades to two positions by overspending and that won us the World Series, I would probably worship the ground he walks on for those deals, even if it hurts us some in the future. We don't have that team now and I do not want Theo overspending now.

The post 2006 Hendry spending spree DID lead us to some very successful times. NL Central titles in 2007 and 2008. That 2008 team was the best Cubs team of my lifetime.

Spending the money wasn't the issue. It was blowing up a team that won 97 games in an effort to "Get more left-handed".

I just wish the Ricketts would show some sort of commitment to spending on the on field product.

Who did you want them to sign last offseason?

Difficult to know exactly what was out there on the trade market. I would have loved to have seen an off season with.

Soriano for Dunn
Cashner + for Chase Headley
Keeping Z
Signing Hideki Kuroda and maybe Paul Maholm

Those were all realistic moves that could have been made. All those moves could have been done and still kept us in the 130 payroll range we've been in for the last 4 years prior to this year.

I feel like that kind of offseason would have made us at least a .500 squad. Borderline playoff contenders.

I for one am happy that the Cubs elected not to do what you suggest. Not because it couldn't have been done or because it won't have accomplished what you suggest, but because I have no interest in building a $130 million "Borderline playoff contender".

We still would have had the same draft picks. We would have still had the same draft pool money. No reason we couldn't have found 2.7 million dollars to still sign Soler.

What is so bad with building a farm system AND not losing 100 games at the MLB level?

First your plan doesn't serious contemplate winning a world series, but instead focuses on merely being competitive. If we don't win a world series I don't care how many games we lose (as evidenced by the fact that I still read this site).

Second, the money we don’t spend on merely being competitive can be spent on free agents, when the Cubs are in a position to compete for a world series. Basically money saved today in ammunition for tomorrow.

Third, trying to be competitive limits your ability to trade veterans for prospects. Under your plan the Cubs would not be able to trade Dempster or Garza, because they would need them to finish .500. The test for Theo is how good a job he does of turning those current assets into long term assets.

Unless they use the saved money for anti-Obama ads.

/I keed

That makes this a .500 team? And borderline playoff? Really? Who would be in RF? LF?

I'd really like to know how Dunn, Headley, Z, and Kuroda make the team at least 20 wins better over the course of a season.

Absurd.

You don't think having a competent Starting pitcher going every day would have mattered? It's not always just an individual piece that makes a difference. It's several upgrades that allows other players to fill lesser roles.

How did Soriano, Marquis and Ted Lilly add 20 wins from 2006 to 2007? How did adding Ryan Dempster to the rotation add another 10 wins in 2008?

More on this... WAR numbers are from Fangraphs.

- Z would be a 2.1 WAR advantage over Volstad/Wood.
- Kuroda would be a 1 WAR loss over Samardzija (though Samardzija probably gives you a small upgrade in the bullpen - lets call it a .5 WAR, to be pretty generous)
- Dunn gives you a .3 WAR loss from Soriano (assuming LaHair plays LF, and gives same WAR there)
- Headley gives you a 2.7 WAR advantage over Stewart.
- Since you don't have DeJesus, you lose .3 WAR, but we won't count that one.

So overall, you have a 4.0 WAR advantage in your scenario. You also have no RFer. So that means a RF-less Cubs team would have 25 wins instead of 21, and 25-37. Nowhere close to .500. And nowhere close to "borderline playoff" team.

That is your brilliant plan to compete?

No reason Samjay couldn't have still been in the rotation. Maybe he could have solved the closer issue? You still have Brian LaHair who could have taken over a corner OF spot. Marlon Byrd was still around also.

And WAR doesn't equate to an actual win total. The Yankees won 97 games last year and had a total combined 59 WAR. Minnesota has a total of 21 combined WAR over the whole 2011 season. Yet they won 3x's as many games as that.

What would 12 more wins put this squad at this point? Right in the thick of the race.

WAR=Wins Above Replacement

the bar changes slightly, but it's something like 46 wins (say 43-47) that a replacement level team would win. You add that to a teams actual WAR value and it should equate to expected win/loss record based on runs scored/runs saved, not actual win/loss record.

I'm not going to pine for its precision accuracy, but it'll get you in the ballpark.

No reason Samjay couldn't have still been in the rotation.

Huh?

Dempster, Garza, Z, Maholm, Kiroda

Where does Samardzija fit?

Maybe he could have solved the closer issue?

I gave him .5 WAR. That was probably a fair number. Maybe a little higher. Who knows? But .5 WAR is a reasonable enough guess.

You still have Brian LaHair who could have taken over a corner OF spot. Marlon Byrd was still around also.

It helps if you read what I wrote. I factored in LaHair playing LF in my numbers. Awesome - so we'd have Marlon Byrd and Campana as our CF and RF? How would that help the team win?

And WAR doesn't equate to an actual win total.

This isn't because the individual numbers are not accurate. It is because WAR assumes that replacement players would win games. WAR is wins above replacement. So if you increase a WAR by 1, it does mean that you would win one more game.

It isn't a perfect measure, but recently fangraphs had a .88 correlation of WAR to actual WINs, when you factor in what the replacement player wins would have been. (Source: http://orioles-nation.com/2011/10/03/is-war-a...)

There is just no realistic way that your plan would have produced 12 more wins for the Cubs already.

I much more happy that we made the Cashner trade we did instead of the one you suggest.

I'd say Headley is the far superior player. One who plays gold glove defense at an important defensive position to boot.

I'd love to see the Cubs make a run at him this offseason. Especially given how great his splits are away from Petco.

"That 2008 team was the best Cubs team of my lifetime."

That's pretty sad because the Dodgers outscored them 20-6 in an easy sweep.

The Angels won 100 games that same year and then lost in the first round, but unlike the Cubs they went down fighting.

Truth is, I've had a long-term theoretical love for the Cubs--what you used to call "rooting for laundry"--but I haven't liked any actual team, so there hasn't been much disappointment. I think the situation may change soon, but not because the owner opens his pockets.

awful seasons for crawford? no one expected anything this bad.

awful contract for too much money...before the ink even dried.

...especially for a guy they wanted to stick in LF.

good guy, bad contract, wrong park.

Koyie Hill has been designated for assignment.

Wellington Castillo activated from the DL.

And Stewart is going to visit a wrist specialist. Team is worried about nerve damage. Valbuena officially up.

This is the best news I heard in a long time. Now, let the trading commence. Campana and LaHair should be playing against lefties. Let's see what they can do. A guy that can lead the majors in stolen bases and not even play every day is worth a long look. I don't think he will be an everyday player, but what do I know. If LaHair is tagged as a platoon player, you will get less for him in a trade. If he is an everyday player, even if he hits a small amount against lefties (such as Pena), he should be worth more. Let's not tag him before we trade him.

I'd just assume we hold onto LaHair. He's obviously got an MLB bat. Stick him in RF and let DDJ be the 4th outfielder/super sub guy.

LaHair might have a MLB bat right now, or he could have had a nice two months. Sure, potentially he could be a nice player, but if someone values him at a top 10-15 prospect or two, I think it is much wiser to take the prospects and run.

Trade him if you can something of value for him, especially at a position where you need it (SP, C, maybe 2B). Hold onto him if you can't get anything worthwhile and try him out in LF. DeJesus can stay in RF and hopefully Jackson will someday take over CF (at least long enough to find out if he can hit at the MLB level). DeJesus isn't going to be a 4th outfielder any time soon. The Cubs don't have 3 OFs who are better than him. Right now they don't have one outfielder who is better than him. If somebody comes a-call'n for DeJesus, though, I'm sure TheoCorp will be listening.

Trade LaHair before he becomes bad like Adian Gonzalez.

Why would you assume that? He may end up staying but assuming he will seems a bit strange.

can't take "Theo blame" too seriously...after all he's just worth one Chris Carpenter

& Aaron Kurcz

lol @7th.

"let me tell you...you tigers fans SUCK!"

followed by gasps (there's a ton of DET fans in audience) and laughs.

welcome to wrigley.

Who was it?

jeff garlin...generic fat holywood guy

He's good on "Curb Your Enthusiasm"

At least he is a legit Cubs fan, I think I've seen him at Wrigley every year for the past several.

he is

X
  • Sign in with Twitter