Monday funnies: The last Bears post of 2013

What a dumb play.
Aaron Rodgers drops back, Julius Peppers hits the ball just as Rodgers arm is moving forward to throw.
Ball falls to the ground.


Just a guy watching the game in a bar, I thought it was an incomplete pass.
But even in the littlest of little league football, coaches will tell you that THE PLAY ISN'T OVER TIL THE WHISTLE BLOWS!
So there's the ball on the ground, it gets picked up by Jarrett Boykin who then stands around with it for an hour (see gif) or so while all the Bears walk back to their huddle, FINALLY Boykin hears either Rodgers or his bench yelling for him to RUN! and it's all over.
You can't give Aaron Rodgers 7 points in a playoff game and expect to win.

But I have to say this about the Bears of 2013: at the start of the season, I did not expect them to be good.
It was the year of the Opposite Bears - good O and rotten D.

In my wildest dreams I did not expect that the last game of the regular season, the Bears vs the Packers, would decide who would be the NFC North champs. 
All year long this team was so up and down it was unbelievable - that they were able to pick themselves up after the revolting Eagles loss is actually impressive.
And last night was an exciting game to watch.
Just a shame that on 4th and 8 the D would allow Randall Cobb to be, and I'm being conservative here, about a million yards wide open.
Seriously, if you dropped a giant net down on Cobb, you wouldn't have caught a Bear.
Awful end, exciting game, surprising season.

Comments

You have encapsulated entirely all of my thoughts about that play and that game. I really loved the "Evolution!" and drum solo bits -- and pretty much everything else in it. Tim's animations are a concept by which we measure our pain -- with apologies to John Lennon.

Well played, sir!

Hey Joe. One day. One OCTOBER day! Something remarkable will happen and I'll have to do a really really happy one. 
In the meantime, I hope your bloody mary is as good as mine. 
Happy New Year.

Happy New Year to you, too! My bloody mary was excellent -- as was the lovely girl who made it.

And Happy New Year to the entire Cub Reporter family -- writers and commenters all!

HOCKEY?

Bulls suck. Cubs suck. Bears are thoroughly mediocre. DePaul still sucks. The weather sucks.

I wish I was really excited about hockey.

The Bears offense was very fun to watch. Cutler will certainly get resigned to some kind of a deal.

This was the WORST Bears defense I have ever seen. Even with a middle-of-the-pack defense, they will be in the hunt for a playoff spot the next few years, barring a major injury.

http://www.sbnation.com/lookit/2013/12/30/5259464/roy-halladay-went-as-e...

Roy Halladay goes to an 80's party dressed in a Cubs Jamie Moyer jersey...

As an unabashed Moyer fan with a Cubs Moyer jersey and signed glove this makes my day. He was such an awesome guy with the Cubs and made me one happy kid multiple times at the park just by taking the time to truly talk to me. He basically cemented my eternal Cub fandom, though maybe I should be mad at him for that.

Happy New Years! Just wanted to take this moment and say as a frequent reader and very seldom poster thanks to Rob G and the regulars of The Cub Reporter for all that you do with this site. As a midwestern guy relocated to Austin, TX your debates, jokes and insights reminds me of having a good Midwest sports bar discussion but with some of the brightest and most passionate Cubs fans around. Here's to next season; well, better make that 2015; ok, how about 2016.

You are living one of my fantasies: living in Austin (except in summer). Been fortunate to have worked and partied at SXSW.

Say hello to Stubs, JMueller, Franklin, and Jo's on Congress for me. How fucking awesome!

Just thinking of Franklin's is making my mouth water...

Happy New Year!

Happy New Year!! I too have played SXSW several times (not since 2002 tho!) and just love Austin. Thanks for the great note reminding us of what we have. I'm in Detroit area and love getting my Cubs' fill here from fellow Chicagoans and expat Chicagoans. Thanks to Rob G. AZ Phil Cubbie Blue, Dr Joseph Hecht and the rest of you bastards!

Ps - now I want Maria's tacos. Dammit.

mark mulder is back...angels, minor league deal, up to $6m if all incentives met (getting $1m just for the minor league deal).

Story about ex-Cubs minor league RHP Tarlandus Mitchell  

link

surprise, surprise...

Cutler gets 7-year deal

Well, then we're in it for the long haul. The advantage here is that Cutler bashers will have to find something else to do for a living. I was on the fence a bit on this, but I have some faith in Emery so ya, why not. And Cutler's comments about it were damn endearing.

While all QBs are overrated, within that context cutler is one of the most underrated QBs in the league. He makes countless small plays happen that don't show up much in the stats (turning a sack into a 4 yard dump off) and I feel like unless people really watch him all the time they don't understand his value.

I for one am very happy we retained him and since I think Trestman is a very smart guy when it comes to QBs he probably saw the same things.

I think I underate him a bit. He opened my eyes with that cremation of that cornerback or safety before he got hurt. Shit, I don't even remember which game that was. Just plowed into the guy. I think a good QB needs to be able to audible but if Cutler can't do that Trestman would have raised a flag on this contract and I'm sure he'd now be a free agent. I'm good with this decision. I like Emery - he seems to have a good head on his shoulders. And I definitely like Trestman. And don't forget, next year the Bears will have 4 huge receivers - Marshall, Jeffery, Bennett, and? Marquess Wilson. They've been bringing this kid along really slowly but he showed something the other day and my god, 4 towers? Jeffery will end up being the best of the bunch. He pulls in balls so well - but as Jon Gruden likes to say "The NEW Monsters of the Midway!"

But regarding Cutler, I do kind of go after him on posts here, but it's only because I think he can be better than he is. Now that he is here for 7 years, I'm actually kind of pumped because it means Trestman thinks a lot of him, and that's Trestman's specialty. I also like it when people take risks. The Urlacher signing early on, the Rizzo and Castro signings. Starting a business lol. Which I'm doing. So yeah, risk taking is exhilarating to me, even when others do it.

It will be very unlikely he will be here for 7 years.

He is guaranteed about $54MM. That's it. NFL is unlike all the other sports regarding guaranteed money, thankfully.

So, its a nice ego-stroke that an athlete can say "I signed for $2BLN and 15 years...", when in reality, said player can get cut after 4 years or whatever.

yeah, good point, although Urlacher was around the length of his contract and then some. But he wasn't a QB. Here's my only reservation about this signing - this seems like a good QB year in the draft. It may not make sense to a lot of people but I'd still like to see them grab one.

Slauson, Jennings get 4 yr deals. Trestman thinking of McClellan as a linebacker.

Was it E-Man who kept harping on that? I think maybe. Anyway, Emery was clearly not impressed by McClellan's efforts this year. The guy is an outside linebacker, good quick moves but he can't push 300 pound guys down on the ground without acceleration. It's really hard for me to critique that since I can't push 75 pound guys down without acceleration.

I can't push 75 pound guys down without acceleration.
---
Where is Tony Campana when you need him.

nice one.

I'm happy to see that publicly the Shea McNothin' evaluation was acknowledged. I'm wondering WHY this did not happen before the 2012 draft, and, if not then - why was this not addressed in camp?

If as they say, "It was up to us to coach up Shea...", what's that saying? He didn't have a fucking clue on WHERE to be on the field.

Oh well - as I said yesterday or whatever, if the team can output even a middle-of-the-pack NFL D, they will be in the hunt for a Playoff spot soon again.

Yeah, four receivers, keep an eye on that Marquess guy - four tall, good receivers, they just need to have a D that doesn't have teams march down the field on EVERY play, which is what happened this year. I think Shea's problem wasn't so much that he didn't know where to go. He couldn't knock people down. That's a bit of a liability at his position. Peppers gets held and even double teamed, so some of his struggles are understandable, but Shea whatever his last name is simply stinks as a defensive lineman. I'm not convinced he'll be much good as a linebacker either, but at least we have a GM who is saying, "Step up".

It's the Slauson cut off, no?

Hiyo!

Yes, I'm aware of all the site errors...no, I don't know how to fix them quite yet.

See my post at the bottom. And again, I stress that if I'm out of line, my apologies.

hardly out of line, appreciate the care and discussion.

alright, fixed the goofy date error, that was harmless enough...still figuring out the comment posting one.

Seems to be that without a proper cache_page, it's eating up our disk storage, so this might get worse before it gets better.

$50m in guaranteed money for Cutler allegedly

the 7 years is likely to spread the cap hit out, I'm guessing it's more likely he's a Bear for 3-5 years unless he ages really well. 

if he could stay healthy I'd feel better about it, but he's got a big time arm and cutdown his errors this year and he definitely shows up for the 4th quarter which is nice.

rumors be they're going to a 3-4 defense, McClellan to LB as noted earlier.

Much as I would love to see a 3-4 defense, all the non-speculative stuff I've seen on the topic is the Bears saying no, we're sticking with the 4-3. On the other hand, I'll take whatever kind of defense Michigan State was playing yesterday.

$54MM is the figure most reported, guaranteed.

Chris Conte basically slapped himself silly and said, "I don't want to be a Bear anymore." So he allowed one of the most horrible plays I've ever seen to happen, happen. And who the hell is coaching this defense? Marinelli had his flaws but do you guys really think for one minute that a Marinielli -coached unit would stand around for anything? Whistle or not?

I'm kind of wondering out loud here - and I guess this should be an email to Rob - if there is a way some of us can pitch in to help maintain this site. I have my own ideas on how to make it work better - abandon Drupal if you don't have time to maintain it and go to Wordpress for one. But I really value the comments here. And the posters, too of course. AZ Phil is our own personal legend. Rob himself has classic moments, amazing overall baseball knowledge. There's Cubster, Cubbyblue, but the commenters are what makes me keep coming back, and I get the sense we are on the final legs of this journey. It is really, really hard for Rob to maintain this site on his own - I know - I am a web developer by trade. I'm curious what we can do to sort of kick this thing back to life. Without saying to Rob, hey, when are you gonna fix _______.

Rob, if I'm stepping out of line here feel free to just treat me like you treat Crunch. I'll be fine.

Wordpress is what this was on before we went independent, it didn't work very well for those that recall. I'm sure it's better now and I'm sure a lot of those problems were because we were part of a larger network, but I think we'd lose a lot of the archives, which would be unfortunate.

The site has been pretty stable until about the last year, not sure exactly what's the cause, some is certainly a lack of time on my part to maintain things as I once did, some may be on our host (last week's debacle was all on them and the reason we're getting an error whenever we post a comment). I have the instructions on how to fix it, I just have no idea how to execute it(mysql, database bullshit that I'm clueless about it). As time goes on, the databases that run the site are getting larger and larger and I frankly don't know much about how they work or how to fix or maintain them. I usually can troubleshoot stuff on my own despite my lack of experience or knowledge, but time has been a factor. I don't know if going to Wordpress would alleviate any of that, I imagine problems there still have to be fixed by someone.

As for the site in general, the Cubs inability to be interesting and my own life adventures have sucked out the excitement in it all...not sure if it'll come back when they get good or not. I've been meaning to try and find a new "everyday guy", since the writing of the site is down to me and Arizona Phil, but there are few prospects out there. The few that have shown an ability to keep it going day in and day out have their own far more popular sites by now and/or I think they're douchebags. Plus if someone did post news more often around here, what the hell would crunch do all day?

Ideally, I would love to pawn off the behind-the-scenes maintenace, continuous upgrading, and dealing with advertisers on someone, so what time I do have is spent writing instead of dealing with B.S. But I imagine if you're job is web related, you don't wish to spend your free time on it as well and I completely understand that. There is some money in all of this, but it's closer to Nike sweatshop workers than McDonald's minimum wage.

But hey, if you want to be a writer or have any interest in keeping the site going in any capacity, let me know. I still visit here more than anywhere else and would love to see it keep going. But yeah, not sure how much longer I can keep it up on my own, but I've been saying that for a few years...so who knows?

I would love, as I'm sure many others also would, to offer some sort of assistance. Unfortunately, I lack necessary skills to do web stuff, and I have neither the baseball knowledge nor a consistent enough schedule to contribute as a writer.

Planning to do a fund drive of any kind in the near future? What kind of money would you need to make any sort of difference? I'm a broke-ass grad student who can only make very occasional small donations, but I've been a reader for years and have certainly gotten enough enjoyment out of the site and community to make it worth some sort of voluntary donation if that would help.

I second this, though I'm employed.

thanks for the monetary offers, maybe I'll do another fund raising drive before the season. Time is more an issue than money though. But in good news, our little discussion started a dialogue again with a reader that helped me in the past. Hopefully we can work out something that he can help on a more permanent and consistent basis.

Thanks everyone for your help and concern.

Thanks Rob. The only thing worse than having trouble getting stuff done is having idiots like me offer to help and then not delivering. As far as writing for the site I just don't have the baseball knowledge the rest of you have. It would almost be like me trying to post on a mathematician site pretending I know what the hell a Euclid is. I kind of felt comfortable with trying out as a writer for the Bears site you got going but at least I played football and was actually not too bad at it until I got hurt. As far as helping out with the site, it is something I'd consider - I need to mull it over some. I haven't really found a web site bug I haven't been able to kill, but yeah, since that's my day job, do I want to devote my free time to it? I very well may. I hate to get all hyperbolic but the quality of the posts and comments here, especially when it gets busy - is the best that's out there, in my opinion. And yeah, I did see a big drop off in people here when the Cubs began to dedicate themselves to even more suckiness than usual. The nice thing about the current posting bug is that you aren't getting tons of comments right now, so it's no hurry ha ha. Anyway, consider me a fan of this thing no matter what happens. I'll follow up with an email to you if I decide I can take on some of the work.

I think you're off the hook Blue, there was another reader that has helped in the past that may take on a more permanent role. Haven't worked it out all quite yet, but here's hoping....

Old and Blue, is this something you would have time to do?

Seems like you would be well-suited. "Just sayin'..."

Old and Blue seems to have the attendance equanimity and skill set? My only question is how 'old' are you O&B? Can your heart take it? We don't want to have a health risk and then Palin has to take over mid term? Just kidding BTW. No age reveal needed.

Ha ha. Good post. If I decide to help Rob out I"m definitely going to delete all of your posts. :-)

and then Palin has to take over mid term?
---
She would shoot to kill a baby Bear Cub?

From a helicopter?

Jeff Suppan retires. General Franco is dead.

BA has Cubs as the #4 contender to land Tanaka

http://www.baseballamerica.com/majors/masahiro-tanaka-sweepstakes-previe...

Mariners, Yankees, Dodgers ahead of them

So you are saying there's a chance?

http://mlb.si.com/2014/01/02/jaws-and-the-2014-hall-of-fame-ballot-the-b...

the best HOF classes of all-time using Jay Jaffe's JAW system

A Maddux, Glavine, Thomas trio would be in the top 5, adding Biggio would bring it down a bit....

Old and Blue, is this something you would have time to do?

Seems like you would be well-suited. "Just sayin'..."

[Sorry for the Repeat - Wordpress thang.]

"Sources said it is a 25-year deal and the Philadelphia Inquirer reported it is worth more than $2.5 billion..."

100 million (or more) per year.

Well yeah, Sandberg's gonna win 15 or 16 World Series during that timeframe.

just so we have the current revenue comp for the Cubs, supposedly they get $60M annually, $20M coming from WGN-TV.

http://my.chicagotribune.com/#section/-1/article/p...

so $40M per year added revs will add two #2-3 starters or an ace and Jason Marquis making his comeback after being out of baseball for 5 years.

Supposedly the Phillies are getting around $30M/year through their current contract expires in 2015, so the cash flow won't change for two seasons although their line of credit will be upgraded.

Pre-Convention Splash?

Do any of you think there will be any pressure to make ANY kind of noteworthy signing prior to the Cubs Convention?

I am thinking that this management team is gonna get fucking torched at the event for fielding this "Padres East" team version of baseball.

In the Hendry years, there was always a "buzz" signing just before the Convention. Last year it was - cough - Edwin Jackson - cough -

this was my favorite Hendry "splash"
http://chicago.cubs.mlb.com/news/article.jsp?ymd=2...

"Do any of you think there will be any pressure to make ANY kind of noteworthy signing prior to the Cubs Convention?"

you're kidding right?

this has been an offseason of the cubs arguing with city/neighborhood over revenue streams and adding new revenue streams...and jose veras.

there's not much out there left to sign that could get done before the convention worth mentioning. they have had enough loot free'd up to sign 2 high-end impact guys (and more), but it seems they're in on no one except being linked to tanaka.

next offseason should be interesting. it's all pitching and bare-bones on the bats aside from a couple 3rd basemen. they're heavily relying on the youth bats to emerge.

OK, crunch, this is probably the 20th time you have commented that next offseason will be a pitching-rich FA class. That's maybe a slight hyperbole, or maybe it's accurate as to the actual number. But I happen to think I'm in the <>drumroll ballpark. Please explain the statement, explaining how there will be plethora of pitching talent available to clubs with large bank accounts as (i state as a large annual customer) there absolutely ought to be for the Cubs.

I'm not saying I disagree; because I have not investigated the matter and I do not know essentially who will be available. I simply have trouble imaging a bountiful FA agent - especially in pitching - in today's cash-flush MLB. Would you please elaborate?

"That's maybe a slight hyperbole, or maybe it's accurate as to the actual number."

check out the FA class next year. lots of name-brand pitching...not much on the bat side aside from c.headley/p.sandoval and h.ramirez (if LAD doesn't lock him up).

pitching includes...kershaw, lester, scherzer, h.bailey, j.masterson, j.shields and a bunch of other guys who are still good but not on that level or will be if they have rebound seasons (j.johnson/e.volquez) or are good but are older and probably won't get more than 1-3 year deals.

this doesn't even include guys with options that are likely to be picked up if they perform and are healthy...j.cueto (10m), y.gallardo (13m), h.iwakuma (7m)...

the market isn't locked in yet...there's gonna be some guys coming up for FA who will be retained by clubs. there's also considerations like BOS losing a bazillion dollars off their payroll next year and that they are stated to be out of the tanaka run this year.

the only thing known is bats are going to be nearly bare.

It seems impossible that Kershaw is already approaching free agency. Turns 24 this March.

CHARLIE: Kershaw will be 26 in March. 

I just... Maths, bro.

Or, I often think it is still 2012 or so.

Thank you.

I suspect most of those top guys will get locked up, especially Kershaw, Lester, and Scherzer, but like you said, it's a wait and see thing.

It hit me last night that this might put the Cubs in a weird position with Samardzija. Let's say they waste this winter in half-assed attempts to extend him on the cheap, but he and his agent continue to insist he should be paid as an ace. Then they realize they are going to have to trade him to get anything from him. But it turns out all these other pitchers are on the trading block too, because they are mere months away from free agency. Or the Cubs try to trade him next off season, but the other big spenders have already picked up their more consistent pitchers on the free agent market. Does Samardzija still have good value in the 2015 season? Maybe this helps the Cubs extend him on the cheaper side? Or does he merely become one of 2016s top FA pitchers? Can't say I'm good at anticipating how this all works.

The largest unknown is whether the Cubs plan to compete on the field in 2015. If yes, there's really no reason to trade him for less than what they deem he's worth. If it looks increasingly likely that they will not, as many suspect, then getting a below-value return is better than just the draft pick they get when he walks away in 21 months.

Pre-Convention Splash?

Do any of you think there will be any pressure to make ANY kind of noteworthy signing prior to the Cubs Convention?

I am thinking that this management team is gonna get fucking torched at the event for fielding this "Padres East" team version of baseball.

In the Hendry years, there was always a "buzz" signing just before the Convention. Last year it was - cough - Edwin Jackson - cough -

Here is a quote from Jackson:

"I think the most assuring part is you have a chance to relax and have a chance to know you're going to be somewhere for a while, and you don't have to feel like you have to prove yourself every year," Jackson said of his new deal. "I feel like it's definitely going to help for myself just to go out and have fun and not worry about anything else."

If it's all the same, Edwin, you can go ahead and worry just a little bit this year.

Happy 22nd Birthday, Kris Bryant

Born: January 4, 1992 in Las Vegas, Nevada

so this finally happened...

"Chris Cotillo of MLB Daily Dish reports that Ryan Theriot has officially retired from Major League Baseball."

8 seasons (including a 14 PA cup of coffee in '05), 6.4 WAR, a ton of scrappy and inspired a base-running stat (TOOTBLAN). Not all your 3rd round draft picks will compile such a legacy.

...and 2 world series rings...earned during the 2 and 1/3rd seasons he wasn't a cub...and some really silly golf pants.

Not really directed at JoeP, but TOOTBLAN is a smear/smudge/skid mark on the world of baseball statistics.

I agree entirely. It's more of an emotional outburst than a statistic. Theriot did inspire quite a few of those outbursts from me.

Does anyone know of a football version of COTS baseball contracts? The closest I can find for the bears is here:
http://www.spotrac.com/nfl/chicago-bears/yearly/

I was listening to The Score yesterday, and there were some interesting tidbits:
Cutler's contract has no signing bonus, so it's essentially a 3/54 contract with four option years and no buyout/cap hit
Cutler's first, year salary is 22.5M, then 15.5, then 16
Jennings' 4/22.4 deal pays him 7.5M in the first year (7.5M cap hit according to this site)
Slauson is probably going to be similar.
After these signing the Bears will be within a few million of the salary cap for next year. To make many signings the team will have to make room through cuts/restructuring
Julius Peppers is a near certainty to be cut. Cutting Peppers and designating him as a June 1 cut will buy them 14M of space.

Other cut candidates for salary cap space are (space created):
Bush (2.8)
Podlesh (1.4)
Weems (1.0)
Earl Bennett (2.1) though I think he'll stay on the team

$20.3 MM if you add all these up, which should be a good amount of space when you consider back loading contracts.
Nobody has suggested cutting Briggs, but if you did he would have a 1.6M cap hit and clear 4.7M in cap space.

Thanks
I found that site earlier today, too. It has a little more user friendly way to find contract details, cap hits. If you go to the home page it has a salary cap calculator where you can plug in cuts, extensions with contract details and get team cap results.
I used some of that information to correct some of the figures I posted earlier.

Ah okay

http://espn.go.com/nfl/story/_/id/10246329/lovie-s...

Lovie's
1- get me a lb like Urlacher
2- get me a kick returner like Hester
3- Win Super Bowl score 10-3

Lovie will have his defense, good luck on offense.

don't think Bucs are too bad off, although South looks like a much tougher division going forward than the Norris.

Him and Rivera butting heads twice a year should be fun. In the end, I don't think there's much of a net difference between Trestman and Lovie, just 2 very different ways at being mediocre. Lovie seemed to handle Sean Payton pretty well for the most part (well at least in Chicago).

Hopefully Tucker and Emery just need a year to get their new players and system in place, and it's not that they're incompetent on that side of the ball.

Lovie had the say with draft with dumb ass Angelo, once again good luck Tampa.

Tucker needs to go.

Tucker needs to go.

comment issue should be fixed

as well as the archives before we moved here (only teasers were displaying)

http://www.thecubreporter.com/2006/10/02/good-night-and-good-riddance

we'll be moving to a new host sometime today or this week (not sure of the timing), but there will be some down time on the site.

Down time on the site?! *Shakes fist at heavens.*

Nelson Cruz may be looking for 1-year deal.

http://www.rotoworld.com/headlines/mlb/417357/nelson-cruz-may-settle-for...

not the worst thing if Cubs could make it happen, although doubt they want to give up the 2nd round pick..

a look at his numbers makes it less interesting

http://www.baseball-reference.com/players/c/cruzne02.shtml

but certainly could sell him on a 1-year deal knowing that he'd likely get traded to a contender and not worry about a qualifying offer next offseason.

Welcome to Chiberia, everybody! NW Indiana is shut down as well. I wonder if Cubster made it to work today in Munster, IN?

My kids were born after 2000, never felt cold like this in Chicago.

Yes. My patient got to the hospital for hip surgery but the office was closed Monday. Open Tuesday.

http://www.baseballthinkfactory.org/newsstand/discussion/the_2013_hof_ba...

145 public votes in for Hall of Fame, Maddux running at 100% so far

Maddux, Thomas, Glavine look like locks...Biggio and Piazza will be close.

Three Cubs prospects, including highly touted shortstop Frandy De La Rosa, survived a car accident in the Dominican Republic on Monday. Other players involved included pitchers Jose Zapata and Jefferson Antonio Mejia, who were riding with De La Rosa in a Toyota. De La Rosa, who turns 18 on Jan. 24, signed with the Cubs in July 2012. The three were hospitalized, but a source in the Dominican Republic tells MLB.com that the players were not seriously injured.

– Carrie Muskat
http://muskat.mlblogs.com/2014/01/06/16-cubs-prosp...
Looking at the picture of the car, these guys were very very lucky.

I've heard the car looked worse before the accident

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