Cubs Send Lendy Castillo Outright to Iowa

The Cubs have sent RHP Lendy Castillo outright to AAA Iowa. Castillo was Designated for Assignment on January 26th when RHP Carlos Villanueva (MLB Article XX-B free-agent signed by the Cubs last month) was added to the 40-man roster.

As most of you know, Castillo was selected by the Cubs off the reserve list of the Phillies AAA Lehigh Valley affiliate in the Major League Phase of the December 2011 Rule 5 Draft. He was signed out of the Dominican Republic by Philadelphia as a 17-year old shortstop in December 2006, but was converted to pitcher in 2010 after hitting a combined 239/287/313 (with 23 SB) in 132 games in the DSL and GCL 2007-09. So when the Cubs acquired him, Castillo had been a pitcher for only two years, and had never pitched higher than Lo-A (equivalent to Peoria or Kane County).

In order to fulfill Rule 5 obligations, Castillo needed to spend the entire 2012 season on the Cubs 40-man roster and/or 60-day DL, with at least 90 days spent on the Cubs MLB Active List (25-man roster). And he just barely made it, too, spending a total of 96 days on the Cubs MLB Active List after being placed on the 15-day DL with a "groin strain" in May. But placing Castillo on the DL allowed the Cubs to send the young RHP on a minor league rehab assignment for 30 days in July, which was spent first in Mesa with the AZL Cubs, and then later at Daytona (which is where he should have been all year) and AA Tennessee. He pitched a total of 20 minor league innings in 14 games at the three stops, allowing just three runs (two ER) on 13 hits (no HR) and 6/22 BB/K, with a sparkling 0.90 ERA and 0.95 WHIP. However, he was cuffed around in twelve games in the Dominican Winter League (DWL) post-2012, allowing 15 hits and 10 runs (7 ER) in 7.1 IP. (The DWL is approximately equivalent to AA).    

It is not unusual for clubs to use the Disabled List to try and manipulate the MLB rules to get a Rule 5 player through a season with minimum MLB exposure, placing the player on the DL with some vague soft-tissue injury that can't be medically proven (or disproven), especially if the Rule 5 player is young and not ready for the big leagues (as was the case with Lendy Castillo). And by placing the player on the DL and leaving him there for a while, the club can eventually get the player 20 or 30 days of minor league time during the course of the player's "Rule 5 season" by way of a minor league rehab assignment (up to 20 days for a position player and up to 30 days for a pitcher). But even with the 14 minor league games (20.0 IP) while on the 30-day minor league rehab assignment and another 13 games (16.0 IP) while performing occasional mop-up duty at the big league level when he was on the Cubs MLB Active List (25-man roster), 2012 would probably have to be considered essentially a "lost season" in terms of development for Lendy, and now he will have an opportunity to get regular work at either Tennessee or Daytona in 2013 (depending upon where he is assigned at the end of Minor League Camp).

Castillo is just 23 years old (he will be 24 in April), he's athletic, he throws hard, and and he has been pitching only three years, so it's not like he's some 4-A retread. (Baseball America recently ranked Castillo as the Cubs #28 prospect). If he is not added back to an MLB 40-man roster in the meantime, Castillo will be a Six-Year Minor League Free-Agent after the 2014 season. 

The Cubs made another Rule 5 selection in the Major League Phase of the December 2012 Rule 5 Draft, this time drafting RHP Hector Rondon off the reserve list of the Cleveland Indians AAA Columbus affiliate. The 24-year old Rondon was a former Indians Top 10 Prospect who missed much of the past three seasons while recovering from TJS. However, he pitched well as a set-up man for Caracas in the Venezulan Winter League (VWL) post-2012, at least proving he was (finally) healthy. (He pitched in more games in the VWL post-2012 than he did in the minor leagues over three previous seasons combined). 

The thing is, unlike Lendy Castillo, Rondon has been outrighted previously in his career, and so he can elect free-agency if he is outrighted to the minors. And he is also out of minor league options, so even if the Cubs can secure waivers and even if the Indians opt not to reclaim him, he can't be optioned to the minors, and if he's outrighted (either by virtue of being re-claimed by Cleveland or outrighted by the Cubs), he can refuse the assignment and elect free-agency. So it's probably pretty much "Wrigley Field or Bust" for Rondon in 2013. He either makes the Cubs Opening Day 25-man roster (or starts the season on the 15-day or 60-day DL), or he's probably gone. In that sense, the Rondon Rule 5 selection was basically a glorified waiver claim of a player who is out of minor league options, with immediate results required for it to pay off.

Whatever ends up happening, Rondon (as a Rule 5 Player) can be traded at any time, but he cannot be placed on Outright Waivers until 25 days prior to MLB Opening Day, and he cannot be re-claimed by the Indians, outrighted by the Cubs, or released any earlier than 20 days prior to MLB Opening Day.   

The Cubs will have to drop another player from the MLB 40-man roster whenever Scott Hairston is added. Like Carlos Villanueva, Hairston was an MLB Article XX-B FA, and thus the Cubs do not have to add him to the 40 until the contract is filed with the MLB Office. And the Cubs have up to 20 days to file the contract after Hairston signs on the line which is dotted. So depending on when Hairston actually signed, it's very possible that the Cubs will be able to wait to add Hairston to the 40-man roster until after the start of Spring Training, and then place either Arodys Vizcaino orScott Baker (both TJS rehab) on the 60-day DL at the same time.

Another possibility would be to try and outright 3B Ian Stewart to the minors, like the Cubs did with Manny Corpas and Blake DeWitt this time last year. Stewart was non-tendered on November 30th and then re-signed with the Cubs in December, getting a non-guaranteed 2013 major league contract with a $2M salary and another $500K in potential performance bonuses. If he were to be placed on Outright Waivers and waivers are secured, Stewart could be outrighted to the minors (and removed from the 40-man roster), although he would still be at Spring Training (as an NRI) with the exact same salary and opportunity to make the Cubs MLB Opening Day 25-man roster as he had when he was on the 40-man roster. Although Stewart could elect free-agency if outrighted (he has more than three years of MLB Service Time), it is unlikely that he would opt out since he would have gone unclaimned off waivers, and thus he (and his agent) would know that no other club was interested in him enough to make a claim (at least for that salary and a spot on the claiming club's MLB 40-man roster).

Return to Homepage

Comments

Great to hear from you PHIL. Hope your the new year finds you well and in good health! Looking forward as always to your birds-eye view of our prospects in action out there.

With your "scout's hat on", looking at the Cubs current big-club bullpen, does Castillo have a shot at making the club in 2013 even as a September call-up? McLeod has been quoted that Castillo certainly has a "lively arm" - but he didn't progress much this winter it would seem. Thanks.

E-MAN: Lendy Castillo was outrighted to the AAA (Iowa) reserve list and will probably initially be assigned to the Iowa squad at Minor League Camp (which doesn't mean anything, because the vast majority of players cascade downward during the course of Minor League Camp as players are sent to Fitch Park from the MLB squad).


I suspect Lendy will start the 2013 season as the closer at Daytona and then move up the ladder as performance dictates. Because he is a Six-Year Minor League FA post-2013 if he isn't added back to the 40-man roster by the 5th day after the conclusion of the World Series, he essentially has one year to prove himself as a prospect. If he struggles, he probably will walk and the Cubs won't care. But if he shows promise, stays healthy, continues to improve during the course of the year, and establishes himself as an effective reliever at AA Tennessee by the end of the season, he will probably be added back to the 40 sometime in October to keep him from becoming a minor league FA.


Note that If the Cubs add him back to the 40-man roster prior to the conclusion of the MLB regular season, Castillo will burn a minor league option, even though he was outrighted (not optioned) to the minors. So I doubt that he will get called up in September, no matter how well he pitches in the minors in 2013.


BTW, by rule Castillo will make $288K in 2013 (60% of what he was paid in salary in 2012), so we won't need to have a car wash or hold any Tag Days for Lendy.

"Mets signed OF Corey Patterson to a minor league contract."

also...

"Nationals signed 1B Micah Owings to a minor league contract with an invitation to spring training."

yes, that says 1B.

I was going to say I thought he was pitcher.

BROOKS KIESHNICK FOREVER!!!!!!!!!

Phil, do you think Justin Bour is a legitimate 1B prospect at this time, or is his ceiling as a LHPH?

JOHN B: Justin Bour will have to establish himself in AAA and have a couple of really good years at that level before I would consider him to be any kind of prospect. He has struggled to hit LHP for most of his career, he is a below-average defensive 1st baseman, and he has below-average speed.    


The best comp I could make would probably be Bryan LaHair at a similar age, who did develop a big-time HR stroke later in his career after spending several seasons in AAA hitting lots of doubles, but who never was able to hit LHP. Bottom line is, unless and until Bour starts hitting 30+ HR a year and can at least hold his own against LHP, his ceiling is probably AAA.


And even if he does eventually develop into an MLB player, Anthony Rizzo is blocking him at Wrigley Field and Dan Vogelbach is coming up from behind, so I doubt that Bour will be in the Cubs organization beyond 2015 (he qualifies as a 6Y minor league FA post-2015).


Bour probably will be at Iowa in 2013, although it's possible that he will repeat AA (even though he has nothing left to prove there) if Brad Nelson is the 1B at Iowa. (The Cubs released Rebel Ridling after last season, so C-1B-3B Taylor Davis is the de facto Tennessee 1B right now).

Speaking of LaHair, I saw an article on Bleacher Report dated yesterday that stated LaHair was one of 10 reasons the Cubs would win the WS sometime in the next 5 years. And people claim Japan has lost its influence. Bah on that! It is going to be interesting if Vogelbomb keeps developing. I don't see any way he or Rizzo moves to the outfield.

Great to hear from AZ Phil! I was wondering what you thought about one of my sleepers for the Cubs Michael Jensen? I watched him pitch for Peoria last season and to my very untrained eye he flashed the best curveball I saw in the Midwest league last season.

STICK: I saw all of Michael Jensen's outings when he first reported to Mesa in 2011 and also his Instructs outings that year, and then I saw him at Minor League Camp last March (when he pitched "lights out" and earned a spot in the Peoria Opening Day rotation), but I didn't see any of his MWL games. He should be in the starting rotation at Daytona in 2013.


From what I saw of him, he is a definite prospect. His breaking ball is a plus-pitch, and he has life on his fastball, too. I would say he would be in the second group of ten among the Cubs Top 20 pitching prospects (Paniagua, A. Vizcaino, P. Johnson, B. Wells, A. Cabrera, J. Arias, Blackburn, Underwood, Maples, Whitenack, McNutt, Loux, Struck, Zych, YL Wang, Jensen, Loosen, Rhoderick, L. Castillo, and Burke).   

another day, another slew of names linked to the PED-clinic.

judging by the cubs performance couple of years it's probably safe to assume the cubs will make it out 100% clean on this latest scandal.

I think I know the answer, but am not 100% sure. If Hairston is not added to the 40 man or signed prior to spring training, I assume he cannot particpate. Is that correct? If so, they should be adding him in the next week.

The first full squad workout is on the 17th. AZ Phil said they could place someone (Baker, Vizcaino) on the 60 day DL next week. So that would open a spot on the 40 for Hairston prior to full workouts.

TJ: An unsigned player can take BP and participate in drills and an unsigned pitcher can throw bullpen sessions and throw "live" BP (just like when an unsigned player is brought in by a club for a workout), but he can't play in Cactus League or Grapefruit League Spring Training games until he is officialy signed and the contract is filed with MLB.


That's why the Yankees had to sign Billy Crystal to a Uniform Minor League Player Contract before he could bat in a Grapefruit League game. The Padres did that with Garth Brooks a few years ago, too 

Jason McLeod will be on XM radio with Mike Ferrin and Jim Duquette's show today.

McLeod Interview... (typed as fast as I could but it's not a transcript, just tried to get key points into text):

Duke: Not easy to jump your system. Go to Theo and ask for a big raise.
JM: Looking at our draft last year where we took pitching and Almora at the top plus the international signings

MF: Fans in Boston and Chicago get excited. Is there a way to temper this excitement.
JM: We've been through this before. Take a volume approach and try to get as much upside as you can

Duke: Does Baez profile out as a SS?
JM: Yes, I see him as a SS. Instinctive, soft hands, plenty of arm strength. Slows things down in the field. I don't see why he can't play a major league SS.

MF: Soler and Almora get people excited. Soler, is he more advanced?
JM: Considering how long it was from when he hadn't seen live pitching, we were happy with what he did. Now that he's more aclimated, we're looking forward to see what he can do.

Duke: Junior Lake, scouts saw him as a SS and some liked him in the OF. When do you decide to make a positional move? Often it happens at AA/AAA level. Junior is big, a Hanley Ramirez sized SS. He's athletic and we have some options with him. Plan in 2013 is 3B but we'll move him around.

MF: Overall, you and Jed/Theo in SD and Boston had the equivalent of "the Cubs Way". How do you outline it for the players.
JM: Staff gets together as to how we want to teach and develop players. That goes into a manual and we discuss this with each individual player. Discuss strengths and weaknesses and tell them what they need to do to progress. Being open with communications with players is important.

Duke: Brett Jackson. Made some swing adjustments this winter to address high K rate.
JM: Brett is a talented kid based on what he can do on the field. Multiple tools. Brett knew there were some mechanical adjustments he need to made. He's going to have to take that into live BP and games this spring. Give himself a chance to make contact.

MF: Theo said we need waves and waves of pitching. Are there potential starters in the system?
JM: Trying to build that up. Upper level pitching has some depth (mentions Raley and Rusin). There are some guys that could come up and help. Power pitching is at lower levels.

Duke: This years draft?
JM: Always feel like the draft isn't strong enough. At #2 there are always some good options. College season starts next friday so we're excited.

MF: Goals for minor league players?
JM: We sat down with them all at the end of last season. Had several winter programs. Will sit down with individual plans in spring training. What they need to do to move up.

MF: Enjoy the trip to AZ. Balmy day in Chicago.
----
MF: I remember stories of him and Theo just going to high school games. JM is the equivalent of a gym rat. Nonetheless, the Cubs future is still a long ways away.

Duke: They better have a good pitching program
MF: Derek Johnson came from Vanderbilt was hired as minors pitching coordinator. Highly respected. If they want to go college arm in the draft, there are 3 higher impact arms (mentions Stanek, Appel and Manea) if that is the path they want to go on.

Thanks!

Thanks Arizona Phil. If I was Hairston I wouldn't even leave my room until a contract was signed. Even just taking batting practise could result in an injury. Why take a chance.

TJ: Scott Hairston has probably already signed his contract, it's just that the Cubs haven't filed it with the MLB office yet. (Clubs have 20 days to file a contract after the player signs).


So while he won't have to be added to the 40-man roster until the contract is filed, the contract should be legal and therefore he won't have to worry about getting hit be a runaway garbage truck and having the contract voided should he decide to report early to Fitch Park. (And I'm not kidding about runaway garbage trucks, either, because the Mesa City Yard is just down the street, and there are garbage trucks running up & down 6th Place on the south side of Fitch Park all day long... I almost was hit by one last year).

I hereby request a cubby blue watercolor of AZ phil dodging the garbage truck

now i wish i could remember the thread where everyone mused about what AZ Phil looked like in their minds...i don't remember the consensus, but it was quite majestic in imagination.

Artist rendering of Az Phil...

http://new7wonders.6te.net/colossus1.jpg

Nicely done!

I have AZ Phil as a 68yr old retired lawyer/judge. Gray hair, slightly round in the middle, and rather refined in most areas of taste. All due respect AZ!

http://futuretom.files.wordpress.com/2012/02/the-d...

I believe that's Phil on the right.

Having met AZ Phil, I'm enjoying all of the speculation -- and the "photos".

Curt Schilling is still an a-hole

Said "former Red Sox oganization" people suggested he used PED's in 2007.

http://www.thebiglead.com/index.php/2013/02/07/cur...

B/N has a transcript of Jed Hoyer's remarks from an interview earlier today on WSCR...

http://www.bleachernation.com/2013/02/07/jed-hoyer...

link to the audio...
http://chicago.cbslocal.com/2013/02/07/hoyer-calls...

Hoyer: The first I’d ever heard of that was this morning, so it didn’t really ring true. It’s “preposterous” that Theo or I would be involved in that or would ever encourage PED use. I wasn’t there, so I don’t know the story he’s talking about. It wasn’t Theo or me.

King Felix gets record breaking 7/175 from the Mariners.

It buys out 2/39.5, so it's a new 5/135.5, aka 27.1 mill a year on the extension. Source; Nightengale Twitter.

And to think 3/44 was the standard oh so recently...

is brian roberts a cub yet?

Damn!!! Hoping he would be a Cub in 2015

they could always give kershaw a bazillion dollars.

"Indians signed LHP Rich Hill to a minor league contract with an invitation to spring training."

...was wondering when he was gonna sign...and what team...

"Mariners designated RHP Shawn Kelley for assignment."

unless he's injured, this seems like a perfect theocorp-type pickup.

he's owed 935K this year, but he's got a good fastball/slider combo with control...setup role upside.

i can't imagine him escaping waivers...even with the nearly-$1m pricetag on him. he's got a few years of club control left on him, too.

Law's Top 10

Baez, Almora, Soler, Vizcaino, Candelario, Underwood, Paniagua, P. Johnson, Blackburn, Alcantara

Guess he's not a Vogelbach believer . . .

Yeah..it's a popular opinion that Vogelbach has no real position, that even if he loses a bunch of weight and gets in shape....which will improve he flexibility and agility...and if he works with the Cubs coaches..he'll neeeeever be able to be any better and become even a passable 1B, I mean he is 20 after all....almost over the hill.
Please note sarcasm

paul goldschmidt never made anyone's top 100 prospect list...or many (if any) team top 10 list...just saying.

there's guys with "he'll grow into it" power because of their contact...and there's guys that just plain mash. vogel and goldschmidt are/were pure mashers. they can turn off-contact into something that goes over a fence.

vogel's not just a pull power hitter, either...he's power everywhere.

he may never lose enough weight or gain enough mobility to be anything but a 1st/DH, but it'd be nice to have him hitting so well that "who are the cubs gonna trade rizzo for?" can come up legitimately 3-4 years from now...or sooner.

fwiw, prince fielder is 5'11"...vogel being crapped on for his weight/height won't hold him back off prospect lists with another season like last year's.

He can continue to raise his value to the team with another good season. He doesn't have to be a Cub someday to bring a return to the team. Keep hitting big boy. Beyond that, it's impressive what he's done physically. I think the ability to get his weight under control indicates a strong work ethic, which can't hurt his value.

Keith Law just on Espn radio in Chicago-

Likes Baez, only concern is plate dicipline. Doesn't expect him to turn out like Pie and KPAt because "this organization will work with him on it" ....Hi Hendry!

No immediate pitching help, lot of good pitchers who were in short season leagues last year, they may get full seasons this year. I forgot the names.

Duane Underwood, Pierce Johnson, and Paul Blackburn....none of whom are anywhere near major league ready. None of these 3 are above age 20...none have played even a short season at Boise. All higher draft picks, but who the hell knows if any of the 3 will ever sniff the majors. I'd have rather heard about Michael Jensen, Nick Struck, or Eric Jokisch.

nick stuck's story is a great reason to balance your numbers scouting with eyes on the ground scouting. mechanically he's an entirely different pitcher than he was less than a year ago...you might as well throw out most of his early career at this point.

he's a whole lot quicker to the plate, hides the ball better, and gets a lot more out of his 90-92mph arm than some get out of their 94+mph arms. he's got a decent cutter and curve, too...gives him L/R balance on the hitters...ever-developing changeup.

it wouldn't surprise me to see him throw 3.00-ish ERA ball with a low whip in AAA next year. i doubt he'll ever be an ace, but his end-rotation upside is starting to look a more like middle-rotation upside. his final 3 months in AA last year was awesome...he probably should have spent that last month at AAA.

Mark Prior in the present tense

Former big league ace has found virtue in quest to return to the Majors

http://mlb.mlb.com/news/article.jsp?ymd=20130207&c...

Breaks my heart about him.

and by the way FU Dusty-

"They talked, as they had a few times a year since 2006. They made their points. Prior had never blamed Baker for his injuries the way so many Cubs fans had, but he did ask his former manager about the strategy in Game 2 of the 2003 NLCS, leaving him in for so long despite such a big lead. Baker had come to accept that he'd be forever pilloried by Cubs fans and the stat gurus he called "propeller-heads," with all that data to back up their claims, but who knew at the time? Throwing a baseball is an unnatural motion. Even the healthiest pitcher can get hurt. He told Prior he had learned from it. Prior said he understood."

Paul Sullivan tweets that ESPN tonight tour of Cactus League teams will skip Cubs camp this year. WSux featured on Feb 22.

lame.

mlb network is doing their "30 teams in 30 days" coverage at least...though they're shooting/showing a very early camp show. i think theirs is one of the first.

figgins finally signs...

"Marlins signed INF/OF Chone Figgins to a minor league contract with an invitation to spring training."

Podcast: Keith Law talks prospects

http://t.co/MlUw0btw

Over at that "Boys of Spring" website that was linked to in the Twitter box (a term which sounds dirty to me), Darwin Barney is looking a little pumped up. Also, Anthony Rizzo looks like a different person with hair. Kind of reminds me of this kid from Coraline: http://images.wikia.com/coraline/images/f/f3/Pictu...

Boys of Spring links:
http://boysofspring.com/d-train-pulls-fitch-park-s...
http://boysofspring.com/rizzo-2/

Even in the batting cages, Darwin should just bring his glove.

Yeah, and I don't see muscles helping him hit much better. His problems are plate discipline and a bad case of arm bar (possibly among others).

at least dusty isn't around...he might bat him 2nd and give him nearly 600+ PA a year. only him!

lulz. sigh. maybe his muscles will get him enough power to break the .675 OPS mark this year...at least he's playing for minimum wage at a time the cubs aren't competitive, i guess.

all joking aside, if he's gonna swing at everything (which he does...doesn't K much, doesn't seem to ever want to take a walk) he might as well have more pop in his bat.

if he can keep his D solid and up this homers to 15-ish a year he's got a slew of $5+m paydays ahead of him if history is any indication.

I'm afraid the Coraline observation is eerily accurate.

MLB Network is showing game 2 of the Australian Baseball Championship...neat...a game, though not live.

hell, i'll watch any baseball that doesn't use an aluminum bat.

based on this game no one in australia knows how to throw a baseball aside from the pitchers...these guys make starlin castro look good.

I don't know if this is a Chrome browser thing or not, but when I type in a comment as a reply to someone else's comment, the first part shows up as the title to the comment but the entire text I write in the box disappears after I press the "save" button. It just shows an empty box on the comment page. If I hit "edit", re-type the comment into the box and hit save, then it finally shows up. In essence, I have to type in my response comment 2X to get it to show up on the comment page.

testing comment in chrome 24.0.1312.57

-edit- cannot replicate issue on my end. it showed up perfectly the 1st time.

It's happened to me more than once.

-edit- but not this time.

It happened to me once, but I rarely use Chrome, so it was probably in Safari.

It happened to me on an iPad. I'm on one now so if you see this it means it's a hard bug to reproduce. normally I'd blame Michael Barrett but instead I'll point the finger at Drupal..

Has happened to me in Firefox, which is all I use

so much lulz...screw you loria family...

http://sports.yahoo.com/blogs/mlb-big-league-stew/...

MLB should step in and force them to sell the team. I guess that would be pretty difficult from a legal standpoint but you'd think the commish could invoke some kind of for the good of baseball clause

Maybe part of the problem is that they're charging high-demand prices. I just looked up a Thurs night game in April against the Cubs, and it's over 100 behind the plate, 50 down the lines, and 12 at the very least to get into the park. Detroit didn't even charge that until last season. If they'd get their prices in line with KC, Pittsburgh, and other bottom-feeder markets, then attendance would have to go up.

Also, don't suck at running your team.

I guess in that sense we're pretty lucky. Theocorp is building, or trying to build, at least, a core of young kids that we have all already started to follow. Naturally, some of them will be traded, but it's conceivable that there will be a solid core that we will all follow for a long time, since I suspect they will try to lock the better ones into long term contracts rather than Loria them off the team once they get good. The Oakland A's sort of did what Florida does, but somehow it wasn't as gross. I think they tended to send guys away piecemeal rather than one firesale after another.

i hope this is the last season of running the cubs like they're a small/mid market team.

if BOS/LAD + MIA/TOR has showed us anything lately, it's that you can turn smart investments + bad baggage into prospects if you're willing to dump them. it's not anything new or revolutionary, but i don't want to hear any more from the cubs about how they shouldn't be spending money because it might hinder what one of the richest teams in MLB is trying to do in the future. plus, they got a chunk of new TV money coming around the corner.

2014 FA class doesn't exactly look great, but whether it's trade or FA i don't want to see another offseason like the last couple of seasons.

The difference next offseason will be that they'll be willing to give 2-year deals to guys who aren't long-term building blocks, but I still expect it'll be 2 years before they start spending on big contracts, potentially with Ninja and Rizzo being the first two.

As for the TV money, the Cubs absolutely cannot count on that unless a contract is signed, because it is definitely a bubble, and once general cable/satellite customers start to buck, it could burst, and no one knows for sure when that'll happen.

live sports is a cable/sat cash cow in this era...especially with a team like the cubs that has national appeal.

you get a 3+ hour programming block with loyal fans and an advertising base ready to throw money at it. i expect the cubs to bank rather nicely on the two contract blocks they have coming to a renewal period over the next few years.

Hairston signed 2 years, Campana dfa'd

Maybe the Cubs think Vizcaino and Baker are both within 60 days of being ready? The timing seems strange on this.

they expect baker to break with the team and being able to throw 75+ pitches by the time ST ends via their most recent chatter.

also, given that campy has ++++ speed and plays CF, i can't imagine him surviving waivers. he's a nice 4th/5th OF for a team that can afford to stash him away to "dave roberts" his use as a pinch runner in a leverage situation and give guys rest in blowouts.

re: latest on/from baker...

http://www.shreveporttimes.com/article/20130209/SP...

“I do (feel healthy),” Baker said. “I would love to, if they allow me, to just jump in there and have a normal spring training, whatever that entails with the way the Cubs run their camp. I don’t know if they’ll let me do that, but that’s the ideal thing. I do plan on being ready for the opening part of the season. I know I’m not 21 years old anymore. There’s going to be some aches and pains. There’s going to be some speed bumps, but this rehab has gone about as well as it possibly could.”

...

“Baker, if he stays on schedule that's laid out for him now -- he's up to about 75 pitches by the end of March,“ Cubs president Theo Epstein said last month. “So we'll just make a call from there.”

JOHN B: Agreed.


Maybe not so much with Scott Baker (because it would be difficult for the Cubs to place Baker on the 60-day DL after he made comments about how good he feels and after the Cubs management say they expect him to be up to 75 pitches by Opening Day), but Arodys Vizcaino could have been a definite possibility. That is, unless Vizcaino also claims he is healthy enough to pitch in Cactus League games and compete for a spot on the Cubs MLB 25-man Opening Day roster.


You can't put a player (even a TJS rehab guy) on the 60-day DL this time of year if he reports to camp in shape to pitch and wants to compete for a spot on the 25-man roster.


It appears as though the Cubs waited as long as they did to add Hairston to the 40-man roster in order to detemine if Baker and/or Vizcaino could be deemed medically remedial enough to be placed on the 60-day DL, before finally having to DFA somebody (Campana).


MLB will supposedly be investigating all DL assignments involving Rule 5 players this season (they could call it the "Lendy Castillo Rule"), and they may be cracking down on February 60-day DL assignments, too.

Now he can come back and finish shoveling my drive.

/kids these days

Tony C highlight...

https://t.co/5q3LsM98

The real reason Brenly left was because he was tired of groaning every game.

Concern grew when he tried to sign the contract with his left hand

http://espn.go.com/mlb/story/_/id/8933842/elbow-co...

Not pretty...and I'm not referring to the 2013 Cubs!

ESPNChiCubs: Video: State of the Cubs

http://t.co/jEzT4Grv

X
  • Sign in with Twitter