Cubs Decline Blanco's Option

...and other notes

As our own Arizona Phil predicted, Henry Blanco's $3M option was declined, but the whispers are that he'll be back with the Cubs at a lower rate. The buyout did cost the Cubs $300,000.

-  Oneri Fleita expects Tyler Colvin to be ready by Opening Day from his Tommy John Surgery that I mentioned earlier this week.

- Looks like Trader Jim is ready for the offseason...

I'm looking forward to it, maybe more so than
the last couple. It'll be nice to talk to a lot of the GMs to see what
their appetites are going to be with free agency and possibly trades.
We feel like we've got some excess in areas that might help us in areas
we need to get stronger."

Happy Halloween!

Comments

I get that Hendry is saying things for public consumption, but what are the areas that "we've got some excess in".

Just askin'

I guess if somebody needs whatever the hell Ronny Cedeno is (flashes of competence between long spells of buffoonery?) we got one of those to spare.

What else?

Catchers converted to pitchers?

I'd really like to know ehere the Cubs are deep.

Starting pitching candidates--not aces, just guys who could be in a rotation. In addition to Zambrano, Harden, Lilly, and Marquis, the Cubs are likely to re-sign Dempster, have Marshall, Hill, Samardzija, Hart, and Atkins.

And second basemen. The Cubs have plenty of second basemen.

Cmon Charlie, You know Jim Hendry ain't letting go of any second basemen. He might add 2 more just in case.

Wow, just saw that Howry is a Type A FA. Good bye.

I don't know that it matters. Will the Cubs really offer arbitration to Home Run Howry?

no

I think that would depend largely on what Howry would get in arbitration. Any thoughts from people who know the process?

He's up for arbitration?! I thought he was a FA?

He is a FA. But you can offer a FA arbitration. If they decline you can then get your draft pick.

(i'm 99% on this one)

You're right. Obviously, the player needs to sign elsewhere for the Cubs to receive two draft picks, and if the team that inks him has its top 15 draft protected the Cubs would get an additional first round pick and a sandwich pick; also, if the FA signs before a November (arbitration) deadline, the Cubs get automatic picks without having to offer arbitration. That's the best case scenario.

If Howry accepts the arbitration offer, I wouldn't be opposed to bringing him back at 3.5-4 million. There are worse relievers out there that will get 6 million; either way, there should be a market for Howry.

I would be very surprised to see Howry on an MLB roster next year.

RH reliever, with one pitch, and that pitch is a so-so fastball that isn't going to age well.

Latroy hawkins still has a job, Bob Howry will have one next year.

I would be very surprised to see Howry on an MLB roster next year.

Wanna' make a bet on that one?

anyone have a link to the full list?

thnx....that' just the list of those who have filed so far though.

Still waiting on Kerry and I wonder if Furcal will get "A" status.

I'm so dumb.

here looks to be a list of potential FA's

http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/2008/baseball/mlb...

In addition to Teixeira and Sabathia, the other Type A free agents according to the documents are Bobby Abreu, Doug Brocail, A.J. Burnett, Pat Burrell, Orlando Cabrera, Juan Cruz, Ryan Dempster, Adam Dunn, Brian Fuentes, Brian Giles, Trevor Hoffman, Bobby Howry, Orlando Hudson, Raul Ibanez, Derek Lowe, Damaso Marte, Jamie Moyer, Mike Mussina, Darren Oliver, Oliver Perez, Andy Pettitte, Manny Ramirez, Edgar Renteria, Francisco Rodriguez, Ben Sheets, Russ Springer, Jason Varitek and Kerry Wood.

The Type B free agents are Jeremy Affeldt, Moises Alou, Garret Anderson, Luis Ayala, Joe Beimel, Casey Blake, Casey Blake, Milton Bradley, Paul Byrd, Mike Cameron, Alan Embree, Eric Gagne, Jon Garland, Luis Gonzalez, Ken Griffey, Mark Grudzielanek, LaTroy Hawkins, Jason Isringhausen, Randy Johnson, Jeff Kent, Paul LoDuca, Braden Looper, Mark Loretta, Brandon Lyon, Greg Maddux, Brad Penny, Denny Reyes, Arthur Rhodes, Ivan Rodriguez, Rudy Seanez, Brian Shouse, John Smoltz, Frank Thomas, Salomon Torres, Juan Uribe, David Weathers, Randy Wolf and Gregg Zaun.

How the heck did Howry manage to get classified as Type A?

it's based off two years worth of stats and being in the top 20% of relief pitchers isn't that hard. Heck, Wood made it based on one season.

chicago journalism legend studs terkel has died at age 96.

I worked with Stugs back at WFMT, in the mid to late 80's. We rarely agreed politically, but he always was fun to argue with - sharp as a tack, and a good - hearted soul. Loved his books, too.

Whoops, "Studs."

you really have to start hitting reply to

"GM appetites"??

I guess that's why Jim really likes to wheel and deal. He sees it like eating.

Submitted by Charlie on Fri, 10/31/2008 - 3:56pm.

I think that would depend largely on what Howry would get in arbitration. Any thoughts from people who know the process?

===================================

CHARLIE: To get draft pick compensation, Hendry will have to decide by December 1st whether to offer arbitration to the three Cubs who are rated Type "A" or Type "B" Article XX free-agents (Dempster, Howry, and Wood).

If they aren't already signed by 12/1, the Cubs will certainly offer arbitration to Dempster and Wood (Demp and/or Woody agreeing to a one-year contract would be great for the Cubs), and ideally, another GM (Ed Wade, maybe?) will sign Bob Howry before December 1st and the Cubs won't have to offer him arbitation. They'll just get the draft picks.

But if Howry doesn't sign elsewhere by December 1st, the Cubs could offer salary arbitration, hoping that because Howry thinks he can get a multi-year deal with another club, he will will reject the offer (and this happens fairly often).

But even if the Cubs offer Howry arbitration and even if he accepts, the Cubs could still release him in Spring Training, and if that happens, they would only have to pay 1/6 or 1/4 of his 2009 salary (1/6 if they place him on Release Waivers at least 18 days prior to Opening day, or 1/4 of his salary if they place him on Release Waivers anytime between 17 and four days prior to Opening Day), but to avoid losing a near-certain grievance that will be filed if he were to get released prior to Opening Day, the Cubs would have to make sure that other pitchers have outperforned Howry statistically in Spring Training and that the pitchers who outperformed Howry make the Cubs 2009 Opening Day roster.

You might remember that happened with Todd Walker a couple of years ago. Walker was an Article XX FA post-2006, and was offered arbitration by the Padres. Walk accepted, and won his case, getting $3.95M from the arbitration panel (the Padres offered $2.75M). But then Walker was released during Spring Training (March 2007) because the Padres claimed he had been outplayed by other infield candidates (and that was actually fairly obvious, at least statistically), and the Padres in fact did win the subsequent grievance and had to pay "only" 1/4 of Walker's 2007 salary (about $970K). So it cost the Padres almost a million dollars to offer Walker arbitration, and they didn't even get a draft pick out of it because Walker accepted the arbitration offer!

Usually about two or maybe three Article XX free-agents accept arbitration offers every year. Hopefully Howry has delusions of grandeur and will consider an offer of salary arbitration to be an insult.

If I had to guess, I would say the Cubs will NOT offer Howry arbitration. The cost of paying him if he were to accept the offer just isn't worth the financial risk, even if the Cubs could get a couple of draft picks if they offer arbitration and Howry declines.

The "best case scenario" for the the Cubs is that Howry will sign with a new club by 12/1 and the Cubs will get the draft picks without having to risk offering Howry salary arbitration. The Cubs lucked-out with Type "B" FA Juan Pierre that way a couple of years ago, when Dodgers GM Ned Colletti signed Pierre prior to December 1st and the Cubs never had to offer Pierre arbitration in order to get a compensation draft pick (who turned out to be Josh Donaldson).  

"The Cubs lucked-out with Type 'B' FA Juan Pierre that way a couple of years ago"

Happened with Kendall last year, too, no?

I don't see any time signing Howry until after the Arb. deadline, given that they could lose a first round draft pick. But those top 15 draft picks are protected, right? So if a team in that first 15 were to sign him they wouldn't actually lose any draft picks, the Cubs would just gain a 1st round pick and a sandwich pick?

mmmmmmmmmm sandwich pick!

/homer

You stole my tagline

Submitted by Charlie on Sat, 11/01/2008 - 10:55am.

"The Cubs lucked-out with Type 'B' FA Juan Pierre that way a couple of years ago" Happened with Kendall last year, too, no?

I don't see any time signing Howry until after the Arb. deadline, given that they could lose a first round draft pick. But those top 15 draft picks are protected, right? So if a team in that first 15 were to sign him they wouldn't actually lose any draft picks, the Cubs would just gain a 1st round pick and a sandwich pick?

==============================

CHARLIE: Yes, Jason Kendall also signed with a new club before 12/1, so the Cubs got a supplemental (sandwich) 1st round pick (who turned out to be Ryan Flaherty, one of the Cubs Top 10 prospects IMO) without having to offer arbitration to Kendall. A club is more likely to sign a Type "B" FA than a Type "A" FA prior to 12/1, though,because while the player's former club does get a compensation draft pick for losing a Type "B," it's just one draft pick, and it's a supplemental pick between the 1st and 2nd round and doesn't cost the player's new club a draft pick. Signing a Type "A" FA prior to 12/1 would cost the new club one of it'own draft picks (either 1st or 2nd round). Of course, that didn't stop the Cubs from signing free-agents like Alfonso Soriano, Jacque Jones, Scott Eyre, and Bob Howry (and losing draft picks as a result) prior to 12/1!  

If a club picking in the Top 15 of the 1st Round of next June's Rule 4 Draft signs Howry (or any other Type "A" Article XX FA) prior to 12/1 (or after 12/1 if the player's former club offers salary arbitration), that team would lose their 2nd Round pick to the player's former team and the former team would also get a pick in the Supplememntal 1st Round (between the 1st and 2nd round).

One other thing to remember is that if a team signs more than one Type "A" FA where compensation is required, that team would lose multiple draft picks, but not all of the teams receiving the compensation draft picks would be able to get the signing team's 1st (or even 2nd) round pick.

For instance, if the Yankees were to sign three Type "A" free-agents this off-season, and all three players require compensation, and one of them is Howry, if the other two Type "A" free-agents they sign have higher statistical ratings than Howry, the Cubs would end up getting the Yankees' 2009 3rd round pick instead of the Yankees' 1st or 2nd round pick.

Again, I would expect the Cubs to offer arbitration to Dempster and Wood (and the Cubs would be thrilled if Demp and Woody would accept the offer), but they will not offer arbitration to Howry. And I would be shocked if Howry signs with a new club prior to 12/1. 

Recent comments

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  • Thanks for the updates Phil. Too bad about Frazier.

    Hagsag 3 hours 38 min ago view
  • The Cubs have released RHRP Scott Frazier (2013 7th round dfraft pick - Pepperdine).

    A Cubs pitching coach told me in Spring Training 2014 that he thought Frazier had the best pure stuff in the organization. Absolutely electric fastball & breaking ball combo. Other pitchers would gather behind the screen just to watch him throw "live" BP. That's how amazing he was. 

    Arizona Phil 8 hours 47 min ago view
  • Got a chance to see Diamondbacks RHSP Zack Greinke (15-day DL - strained oblique) throw a rehab start at Sloan Park Friday night. Four of the first seven AZL Cubs hitters singled and the Cubs did score an unearned run in the bottom of the 1st inning, but then Greinke got serious and struck out five in a row.

    ZACK GREINKE: 3.0 IP, 4 H, 1 R (0 ER), 0 BB, 5 K, 4/0 GO/AO, 49 pitches (34 strikes)

    Arizona Phil 9 hours 1 min ago view
  • Eloy Jimenez grand slam tonight. Hoping Soler power returns and gets hot but future looks bright in the outfield regardless.

    Eric S 13 hours 12 min ago view
  • Have fun - It may be good for Arrieta to be facing a team that doesn't know him as well as the NL teams. A nice shutout would do wonders for his confidence. He is confident in public but baseball is hard and he could use a boost, I'm sure.

    Old and Blue 13 hours 53 min ago view
  • Me too. I'll be at the game tomorrow and would love to see Good Arrieta.

    Brick 14 hours 18 min ago view
  • Last few games have been the April version of the Cubs that disappeared completely the past two months.
    Hope they can sustain it.

    blockhead25 14 hours 44 min ago view
  • Don't sell yourself short, Judge.

    Jackstraw 15 hours 11 min ago view
  • I love this team.

    Looks like Mother Nature is trying to call this fight.

    Rob Richardson 16 hours 39 min ago view
  • Hey! I remember this team!

    billybucks 16 hours 48 min ago view
  • The key for Heyward's offense: get early leads. Heard a stat on Mike & Mike on the way to work that his avg/power much better this year when the Cubs have the lead. And true to form he gets the two run dinger with Cubs winning 3-0 ...

    Eric S 18 hours 14 min ago view
  • I'm sorry - I was probably not looking at the correct line, or spot, or...who knows!

    I could blame it on the weed, but I stopped smoking many years ago.

    Fortunately, I can rely on the rest of you sober and astute folks to bring the correct info forth.

    The E-Man 18 hours 42 min ago view
  • Oh yeah! It just felt like one for some reason.

    Old and Blue 19 hours 47 min ago view
  • Agreed. I was not including Fowler or Heyward.

    I'm just not a fan of 2016 Coghlan.....

    Dusty Baylor 19 hours 54 min ago view
  • @Dusty Contreras if it's a Lester or Arrieta start. TLS is good PH too. You also forgot about Heyward, assume Fowler is CF.

    chitownmvp01 19 hours 55 min ago view
  • I expect Soler to get optioned as well when activated and Cahill to replace Grimm. It wouldn't surprise me if Coghlan and/or Soler is included in a trade.

    Maybe Coghlan is up to see if he can get on track before someone acquires him.

    This move could also be to assure that we have as much OF depth as possible to maximize Joe's ability to rest players in September once we've clinched.

    chitownmvp01 19 hours 57 min ago view