Cubs Sign Gaudin, Tender Rest of Arbitration Eligible Players

No suprise here, but the Cubs end up offering contracts to all of their arbitration eligible players that Arizona Phil went through this morning.

They even got Chad Gaudin to sign a one-year deal already, terms have yet be to be disclosed.

This seemed like a no-brainer to me once they dropped the Jake Peavy pursuit. None of these guys will be making much and all could provide some sort of usefulness next season.

6:10 PM CST: It looks like Neal Cotts signed as well. Sullivan says Gaudin will get $2 million, and Cotts will get $1.1 million.

1:20 AM CST: Add Reed Johnson as well for $3 milllion.


If the Cubs signed Chad Gaudin on contract tender day, that means they have been negotiating with him, didn't want to go to arbitration with him, and were probably planning to non-tender him today if they hadn't come to an agreement. The deal probably involves performance incentives that aren't possible to get into a contract if it goes to arbitration.

Same thing happened last year with Neal Cotts and Mark Prior on contract tender day. The Cubs re-signed Cotts ($800K with $75K in incentive bonuses), but could not come to terms with Prior, so Prior was non-tendered..

WMVP says Cubs agreed to terms with Cotts at $1.1 million.

RE: RF - I suppose Hendry's decision between Abreu and Bradley would also come down to contract length. Reportedly Abreu wants at least a 3 year deal. If Bradley will take a 2 year deal Hendry might jump at that. Even though I really don't like him, I'd prefer Abreu as well.

In summary the off season is looking like...

Hendry's bringing "the gang's all back" except for Kerry Wood who had to be sacrificed (at least salary-wise) because Fukudome was a bust and we needed another Left handed hitting outfielder who can supposedly bat 4-5th. It looks like the payroll increase is just due to relatively predictable contractual raises (which I suppose includes Dempster in a free agent kind of way). I guess they could have dumped other salary to make more changes (hear that Jason Marquis) but that was more difficult than just dumping KW.

If Fukudome does reverse course (big if)...he just needs to have comps vs what Edmonds did last yr to break even now.

I guess that's why the Peavy possibilities were exciting as it would have made the predictability of "the gangs all back" not the case.

the Schoenweis for Marquis deal is dead...unless he's going to the DBacks now.

Schoenweis was just traded from the Mets to the DBacks for Connor Robertson in a salary dump (odd that the DBacks would take on salary though)

Mets are paying 1.6 of Schoenweis's 3.6 million salary. Hardly a salary dump but a "cut your losses" kind of deal.

that makes no sense. Either the Dbacks are really high on Yusmeiro Petit for a 5th starter, or they really want to be rid of the Unit. Maybe the Unit really is a tool in the clubhouse and they don't want him around the all of their young guys.

Tribe thinking hard about Wood. Heh, hard ... Wood.


So, just how injured is Takashi Saito?

Any other non-tenders that could intrigue the Cubs (or other teams)?

Word. Even half a season of Saito would be an enormous boost to the bullpen, he'd be an ideal complement to Gregg for setting up the Marmot. Plus, maybe it would do Fukkake some good to have a countryman in the clubhouse, couldn't hurt.

Guys' elbow is a ticking bomb. They tried alternative treatment to Tommy John Surgery during the stretch last year and it didn't give immediate results.

Might be an interesting pickup, a la Redster and Wade Miller -- oh wait... Miller?

I wouldn't mind Daniel Cabrera or Tim Redding as 5th starter.

I would pass on Tim Redding, unless he's willing to accept a minor league contract or pitch in long relief, but Daniel Cabrera is an intriguing high-upside, long-shot non-tender guy.

Both could be an asset in the pen--ready to step into the rotation in case of injury.

I wouldn't be surprised to see the Padres sign either one of them.

Well Houston DFAd poor man's Derosa (Wiggington) who would likely be if Jimbo came out Vegas thinking about trading Dero. We could do alot worse than a a Fontywiggy platoon.

more power, less D, and a bit less arm.

if he could actually play 2nd/3rd like he belonged there he'd be in for a hefty multi-year. someone will pay him 6-7m per for 1-2 seasons, though...supposedly he's a decent clubhouse guy, too.

astros and ed wade are baseball retarded

Ibanez off the market, signs with Philly. Presumably means that Burrell won't be back.

Yes. Did you hear that the Peavy deal is dead too?

talk of griffey to the reds coming to a standstill...might not happen now.

I have heard that the Yankees might acquire Babe Ruth! That would be the cats pajamas!! 23 Skidoo!

Why say there pal, I heard he might not go to the Yanks afterall. I hear the Kaiser is making trouble over there in Europe and George Ruth might go sign up to be a doughboy.

Over there, over there,
Send the word, send the word over there
That the Yanks are coming, the Yanks are coming
The drum's rum-tumming everywhere!!!

Thank God. Now, on to Adam Dunn for RF! :)

too bad Dunn's been traded to Arizona

And now is a FA.

who the hell is dunn?

i think he's the actor who plays the jolly green giant.

Jonny Gomes is as unsigned as Barry Bonds.

Could be a good gamble in a minor-league deal situation.

Reed Johnson brought back for $3 mill.

my favorite 4th OF'r since matt stairs left...woo.

...even if he was a starter at 1st for a chunk of it. matt stairs was a fun dude.

If nobody has already mentioned this, you can listen to Kevin Towers' interview yesterday on XX Sports Radio in which he, obliquely, blames the Cubs for blabbing everything about the Peavy deal to the media thus deleveraging his position.

Absolute bullshit! By all reports Towers was the one leaking everything to the press and it pissed off Hendry and the Cubs.

It's also pretty clear from the interview that he and the Padres put all their eggs in the Cubs/Peavy basket and now are in complete disarray with no clue what to do next.

You can listen in here

Towers is a total douche. He and McPhail are dead to me. At least Sabean's a nice idiot.


The Cleveland Indians wasted no time this morning getting the news out that they've signed Wood... The Tribe braintrust must have pulled an all-nighter.

Wittenmeyer's Sun Times article covering Bradley...Reed Johnson, Gaudin, Cotts and the arbitration eligibles.

but Daniel Cabrera is an intriguing high-upside, long-shot non-tender guy.
I agree that he's interesting. Control has been his downfall but I wonder if he could be reworked into a set up reliever, maybe scrapping a pitch. Probably not a fit with the Cubs but it will be interesting to see where he goes and if he rebounds.

on another note, it's been awfully quiet on the Hank White front. I guess the death of his brother might be the reason and the Cubs (or other teams) are giving him some time to support his family. Still, the backup catcher position needs to be addressed unless it's Koyie Hill or Wellington Castillo they plan on going with. Blanco just might get a starting job somewhere though.

If Arizona Phil sees this, I love to hear his thoughts on the Cubs backup catchers if Blanco moves on.

I think you're right about Cabrera, that he's not really a fit with the Cubs. But I do see a few clubs that could be interested. If I were the Pirates I'd at least check out what the price might be, and the Padres will probably be rumored to be interested in just about every cheap, high-upside pitcher available because of their park.

I would think the Cubs either re-sign Blanco or go with Hill as their backup catcher. If they go with Hill, they'll probably sign a minor league FA catcher to play in Iowa and to hang around in case Hill sucks or gets hurt. But I'm clearly not AZ Phil, and I'm sure he has plenty more info and better ideas on that one.

Are there some teams that might look at Blanco as a full-time player, or at least as someone who deserves more playing time than the Cubs give him?

here is Kevin Goldstein's take on the Cubs acquistion from the Rule 5 draft (from a transaction with the Reds) David Patton (from Baseball Prospectus);

Patton is another reliever with a solid chance to stick. More of an organizational player entering the season, Patton's stuff significantly improved with a move to the bullpen, as his fastball consistently sat in the low 90s in shorter stints, and he also uses a sharp slider that projects as at least average. If there's a word of warning, it's that he got torched in the Arizona Fall League and then struggled with his command in Hawaii.

What about offering John Bale a minor league contract? He may have Farnsworth's IQ, but he threw well in September after coming back from the DL. If Hendry can move Marquis, and Marshall covers the 5th spot in the rotation, then they could use another lefty in the pen.

Submitted by Cubster on Sat, 12/13/2008 - 10:19am.

If Arizona Phil sees this, I love to hear his thoughts on the Cubs backup catchers if Blanco moves on.


CUBSTER: Having Henry Blanco around while the jury was still out on whether Geovany Soto could be a frontline catcher probably made sense to Hendry going into the 2008 season, but with Geo having won the N. L. Rookie of the Year Award and catching 125+ games, I suspect the back-up catcher roster slot is one area where the Cubs are going to want to cut costs in 2009.

As of right now (12/14), it looks like it's going to be a Spring Training battle between Zambrano-favorite Koyie Hill (who is on the Cubs 40-man roster) and veteran Mark Johnson (signed to a minor league contract by the Cubs last month). I sure wouldn't want to have to count on either of them if Soto were to suffer a season-ending injury, but as long as Geo catches 125+ games, I guess the back-up catcher isn't going to be much of a concern to Hendry. (Neither have much to offer offensively, but K. Hill is a switch-hitter who has the versatility to also play 3B and 1B in a pinch, while M. Johnson is a left-handed hitter with considerable MLB experience). 

There was talk somewhere recently that the Cubs were considering bringing back Paul Bako (like Mark Johnson, another below-average veteran MLB left-handed hitter) as their back-up catcher in 2009, and if that's true (and it definitely sounds plausible), it probably means the Cubs want to find a back-up who won't cost more than about $800K. (Of course, you get what you pay for!).

As for Welington Castillo, he is a very good prospect and he will play in the big leagues, but he's still raw (he won't turn 22 until April), and I would say he needs at least one more year in the minors (maybe two) before he's ready for The Show. He still makes too many mistakes (he had a ton of errors & passed balls in 2008), and I doubt that Uncle Lou will tolerate that on a contending team.

W. Castillo is eligible for the 2009 Rule 5 Draft, so he will certainly be added to the Cubs 40-man roster no later than 11-20-09, probably most-likely as the September 1st "3rd catcher" call-up. Castillo could get a shot earlier than that, though, if something bad happens to Soto and the Cubs need a right-handed hitting catcher to platoon with Bako (that's presuming the Cubs sign Bako) or M. Johnson. or K. Hill. Bottom line is, the Cubs better hope Soto stays healthy in 2009. Soto getting hurt (or having a "sophomore slump") would be difficult to overcome.

Thanks Az Phil...and Bako (as you mentioned) is a lefty bat plus he got the most playing time (299 AB's) he's had in awhile last year in Cincy. All that playing time didn't amount to much production though.

.217 .299 .328 6 HR (including one off of Lieber)

Ah, Dusty Dusty Dusty. That 'splains the near 300 at bats.

He doesn't have particularly good defensive chops. He doesn't have a stich of power. But at least he makes up for it by not getting on base.

What's not to love about aquiring a guy like that? Especially at more than MLB minimum money!!!

Recent comments

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  • May the best team win, and subsequently humiliate the Cardinals.

  • I love arriving here first thing in the morning, adding a few moronic posts (moranic for any Cardinals fans who may be trolling), and reading the sage posts of all you guys. Most knowledgeable fans on any forum, by far. So post like crazy today and help give TCR some visibility!

    I told my wife last night that I'm going to need a support system for tonight's game. Tonight is going to be a lot harder on me than it is going to be on these rookie bad asses.

  • James Russell elected free agency.

  • based on what SF has been doing every other year lately, getting access to the postseason playoffs seems to be what's important. bring on dat short series!

    that said, skipping the sudden death 1-game WC would be nice from here on out.

  • I know what you are saying, but I feel compelled to point out that there's no such thing as luck, curses, etc. The Cubs this year have as good as a chance as the Pirates to move on to the next round. If the Cubs proceed to the next round or not tomorrow, it will not be because of luck, but because one team outlasted the other. When/if the Cubs are lucky enough to make it to the league series, that's where they may find their biggest challenge. The Dodgers have a good, deep pitching staff.

  • debuting the new format 1 game "sudden death" WC matchup at yankee stadium does a perfect job of showing the intense emotion and drama this game can be.

    that said, i'm ready to not see yankee stadium or hear fans at yankee stadium for another 5 and 1/2 months. at least i don't have to sit through the braves with their "tommy hawk chawp" this postseason.

  • i'd like to know why the internet radio feed of the game (which is always delayed by a few seconds at best) is almost a minute faster than the ESPN cable TV coverage. wtf?

  • i dont know what order they'll be in, but i pretty much expect fowler/schwarb/rizzo/bryant/montero/castro/lastella/arrieta. any change at all (aside from the first 4 guys) wouldn't shock me, though. coghlan is still a wildcard in the lineup joe could always march d.ross out there with very slow arrieta pitching.

  • Yup. Have to agree. Baseball, like golf, certainly has that psych component for the player. There is no real reason why a fielding position should affect a batting average. The Cubs are 106 years over due for a little luck. Don't you guys think so? Maybe the rookies can bring some dumb luck on.

  • probably stacking capable lefties vs cole while keeping the "hot" castro in the game. fwiw, he's 1-6 lifetime with 0 bb/k vs cole (double).

    i chalk bryant's issues at the plate while playing OF up to coincidence so far.

  • I will call your dead horse, "Trigger".

    In one game, when anything is possble, I am glad that Joe Maddon is our Manager.

    He knows the stats better than all of us. It would seem, IF La Stella gets the start at 3B, it will be only up to the point that they were to get the lead (crosses fingers). From everything I have read, the game will be managed like a hoops game: offense/defense. So expect La Stella to be out of the game by the 5th. This team is incredibly deep which is so surprising. We never woulda thunk it.

  • i don't know what their roster plans are, but j.herrera is out there practicing with the team.

    i can't imagine him making any roster, though. dude had 4 PA the entire month of sept. him being a good dude to be around while keeping the clubhouse loose seems to be his main role at this point.

  • I know it's my own personal dead horse to beat --but Bryant has been a lousy hitter when playing the OF this year. Given that it's his first playoff game, I really hope they keep him in his natural position and don't mess with his routine.

    Lousy as in 8-for-45 with one XBH and no HR. Small sample and all that -- but why take the chance?

  • hard to tell what's up given they'll probably want to stack as many good lefties into the lineup as possible.

    castro being a bit hot doesn't help things. if he was still cool they'd probably stick la stella at 2nd and call it a day.

  • Madden won't announce lineups but Stella is practicing at 3rd and Bryant in LF today. I'd rather see Bryant at 3rd but I guess Stella has been hotter than Coghlan.

    /edit. Though I guess they could be practicing this with the idea Stella would come in as a PH then double switch him to 3rd base and Bryant to LF. Hope that's the plan instead

  • I really like the sound of that idea about expanding the AFL to ten teams. Each org. gets to field more players.
    They should do that anyway, regardless of Adv. Instructs.