Wake Me When We Win

GAME 114 IN-GAME DISCUSSION THREAD [PARACHAT] CINCINNATI REDS (51-62) @ CHICAGO CUBS (54-59) WRIGLEY FIELD, 1:20 pm CDT, TV: CSN
Rich Hill, LHP
0-1, 7.00 ERA
19/9 K/BB, 2 HR in 18.0 IP
Eric Milton, LHP
5-12, 6.75 ERA
87/40 K/BB, 33 HR in 133.1 IP
2b Ryan Freel LF Matt Murton
SS Rich Aurilia 2B *Todd Walker
CF *Ken Griffey Jr. 1B Derrek Lee
LF Wily Mo Pena 3B Aramis Ramirez
1B *Adam Dunn SS Nomar Garciaparra
RF Austin Kearns RF *Jeromy Burnitz
C Jason Larue C Michael Barrett
3B Edwin Encarnacion CF *Corey Patterson
P *Eric Milton P *Rich Hill
Another day, another random lineup. The team is actually closer to last place in the division then it is to gaining a playoff spot. Mighty, mighty sad. PLAY WITH SOME PRIDE boys. You know what you do when you're in a losing streak? Other then pull out the old Mark Grace slump buster. You make things happen, steal when no one is expecting you to steal, force the action, what do you think the smartest player on our team was trying to do on Saturday? And don't give me, we don't have the talent to do it with. Yes we do. You don't need a bunch of gazelles to know how to run the bases or realize which pitchers and catchers are easy targets to run on. Hit and run once in awhile, you have a lineup full of guys capable of putting the bat on the ball (besides Corey and Burnitz). Do something, the Reds are third from the bottom in defensive efficiency, make THEM score runs for you. My second favorite team are the Anaheim Angles, mostly due to the AngelFan wife. I watch them quite a bit (probably more then the Cubs since they're on everyday), and they're a joy to watch. Every single player on that team knows how to run the bases, knows when to take an extra base. Scioscia will send ANYONE on ANY count, just to keep the other team on their heels. It's a fun brand of baseball to watch and it's a winning brand of baseball. The Angels have HAD MORE INJURIES then us this year and are still in first place. Every single starter, minus Darrin Erstad and Garrett Anderson, has spent time on the DL. (and Erstad has been out the last few days as well) Their second and third best pitchers are on the DL right now, their closer was on the DL, but still they're in first place, weak division or not. Sorry for the rant, I'm beyond frustrated. I can handle losing, I can't handle a total lack of effort. A loss today and we match our season long eight game losing streak along with the dubious distinction of getting swept AT HOME by the god-awful Cincinnati Reds. If that's not enough to get some people fired, I don't know what is. Has anyone figured out how many days until Opening Day 2006?
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Comments

You have Neifi, cubs.com has Nomar. What gives?

act cilvil, I closed the comments on the previos post. I understand we're all a bit ansty with the losing, don't take it out on each other, just argue about why the Cubs suck right now.

overenthusiastic cutting and pasting, let me fix that.

Speaking of last Saturday's game, was anyone else as annoyed as I was about having Maddux sacrifice with runners on first and third and one out? The Cubs were down 2-0 (I think it was the 6th inning), and the only Cub hits were by the two baserunners and Maddux (in his previous at-bat).

I thought it was a terrible move, but I didn't read anyone questioning it, either in the newspapers or on TCR.

so how many more of these "+" lineups does dusty march out before its the player's fault and not some stupid lineup jockey who actually has his player's support?

its ultimately up to the players to perform unless the lineup jockey is cockblocking the guy.

and one thing about the angels rant john (the above 2 paragraphs dont apply to you, it was a general rant)...the angels had REAL injury backups for those starters...not 3-4 .300% ob% guys...and the angels have a pen, too...a pen on roids, but hey we did well with sosa for a while...hehe.

Rob G.

Your second favorite team is the Angels. I'm friends with Mike Butcher--roving Minor League pitching instructor for the angels. We played high school ball together....fantastic ball player (in high school was probably just as good in football as baseball). He's actually posted on here before when visiting back home. Stories he tells I can tell the Angels have a class act of an organization.

this is a 2nd place team that's .5games off the wildcard with just 1/3rd of the bullpen's losses coming back to us....and who knows how many more/less with proper injury replacements on the bench.

i find it hard to fault hendry for the pen, even though its been soooo sore and a concern cuz there was thought to be lots of kids in place in case people faltered...now here we are in august and we have a pen full of failure. no one came through but the dumpster, go figure.

but going into the year with 3 proven .300 ob% guys on the bench AND dubois...that i can put on hendry. this is year 2 he's been burned by injuries counting on the 1-8 to stay healthy and perform.

The Cubs problem, outside of any mismanagement by Dusty, is simply their plate discipline right now. They aren't taking walks, they aren't seeing a lot of pitches....

I watched in vain the other day as Burnitz grounded into a double play by swinging at the first pitch after the pitcher had walked the previous batter on four pitches. That's just ugly...

The Cubs do not know how to take pitches and use that to their advantage. Thus, OBP suffers, runners on in front of a homer-happy team suffers, runs suffer, we get the the soft-underbelly of opposing bullpens later in a game (hence all this 8th and 9th inning faux-comeback BS), and our starters get marched back out there after 3-minutes 1-2-3 Cub-half "innings." I put innings in quotes because I hesitate to qualify what our guys are doing as baseball.

Rob is right, the Angels play better ball. The Cubs can't lay all this blame on Dusty, but the coaching staff is way too old-school, the players, too new school to know how to play old-school with any efficiency, and they need some more players who keep the other team guessing (missing Lofton anyone?).

The Cubs major problem is one-dimensionality. Our pitchers get Ks, but if they aren't K'ing, we're in trouble. Our lineup hits for power, but if we're not homering, we're in trouble. That simple. We have nothing to fall back on...

Well, I guess the theory that Dusty was going to still start Neifi at SS much of the time even when Nomar comes back is blown out of the water.

It is fun (and easy) to say that the Cubs aren't doing the little things (base running, lineups, etc) and that is why they aren't winning, but isn't it more accurate to say they are an average team because they don't control the strike zone, which is a really big thing.

I wonder, harmlessly I hope, if Dusty's being told what lineup to make from upstairs lately. This is the 3rd day in a row that we haven't seen Neifi. Lawton is out in favor of Murton. Macias has disappeared from the lineup. Doesn't it seem curious that Dusty's Random Lineup Generator has suddenly corrected itself?

235 days until Opening Day 2006 (assuming that it's April 2nd).

This is going to be a HR derby. Hopefully we will hit more of them. About C-pat on the other post what I should have said is that players are creatures of habit and batting in one spot on a daily basis could help him. Yes his pitch selection needs to improve and hitting in one spot is not going to make it happen, but some times little things can help a sitution by making him more comfortable at the plate. I am sorry for calling Dusty an idiot it was uncalled for in that sitution.

if you assume dusty is being told how to run a team and make a lineup, you might as well assume he's resigning today...there is no way dusty would allow a bunch of pencil pushers to tell him how to run a team he's been around about 150 days now.

managers dont last long doing that. players have NO respect for that.

#4
I think Maddux is a prime Double play candidate in that situation. I think the best chance a team has in that situation is to get the guy to 2nd, allowing 1 hit to tie the game. Even if we got a hit there by Maddux, or a sac fly, we still need another hit to tie. I think it's one of those damned if you do damned if you don't plays...I think what they did was the right move, but I certainly understand why you think otherwise.

on the pregame radio show, dusty said murton will be starting tomorrow's game as well...go big red!

#13. I can understand not moving a guy around from leadoff 1 day, to 7th another day, to 2nd the next day...but moving from 7th to 8th doesn't seem to me like there is a significantly different approach that needs to be taken.

the angels have one injury backup...chone figgins, whose the ultra-model of Jose Macias. He can play damn good defense wherever you put him, steal a ton of bases and hit respectively well.

He started at second when Kennedy started the season on the DL, moved to third to spell McPherson, center when Finley went down, played some right when Vlad went down and has seen games at SS and left as well.

Otherwise they're backups have been (OPS follows the name)

Maicer Izturis .671
Robb Quinlan .483
Jose Molina .630
Jeff Davanon .685
Juan Rivera .715

whew, what a group. Kotchman has also filled in well for Erstad the last few days.

Pitching wise, it's been

Ervin Santana 4.91 ERA
Kevin Gregg 5.90 ERA
Chris Bootcheck 3.38 ERA

Bullpen
Defined Roles
Donnelly in the 7th, Shields in the 8th, Frankie in the 9th

No silly matchups, no looginess, best relievers get the toughest outs. And no we don't have anyone as talented as Frankie or Shields and quite possibly not even Donnelly, I know that. Of course the Angels have been doing it this way for 4 years now with great success no matter who they plug into those roles.

How 'bout them Bears!

Starting the suckitude early today!

Isn't Shields a free agent next year? I'm not sure, but I thought he was. He'd look great in our pen.

wooo...Good start!

Did I read that right? First pitch homer?

vlad/anderson/finley/j.rivera/davanon is their OF corps...that's 2 quality replacements there...hell, that's 4 OF starters...

figgins isnt bad himself...

theyve had 1 slug on the team seeing significant at bats in mcphearson...who's an uberprospect at 3rd...

still, minimum, you got 2 guys on the bench there who could be no-question starters on a lotta teams.

and about their pen...this is year 2 i believe they havent had a lefty in the pen. but they do stock the pen well as an organizational direction.

Just had to post this, from a "veteran scout" a Trib employee talked to last year on Sept. 30:

"The thing I don't like about them is they can go one, two, three games without scoring any runs," he said. "Their starting pitching should keep it close, but their bullpen isn't good enough to win close games, so if they aren't hitting, they are in trouble."

Seems so long ago, yet so recent as well. My, how so little has changed.

This Cubs offense needs to step up to the plate and perform today...We need to see some runs early on in this game...I like trying Murton as a lead-off batter.

I think that is the furthest ball that Murton has hit this season!

thanks for the update John....woo...235 days to go

and the angels rant was by me crunch, don't bring poor old John into it.

and that's cool cubfan, can Mike get me some tickets? Next time you talk to him ask if he'd be willing to do a Q & A on here. I know he's with the Angels but I'd be curious about some stuff.

and yes I blame Dusty for the lackadasical play and overall style of play. Yes you need guys with strike zone judgement, yes you need guys you can hit a ball over the fence, yes you need OBP guys, but what says that any of those guys can read a sign that says hit and run or steal or squeeze.

Why the hell does Korey only have 15 SB opportunities this year? Crappy OBP? I don't think so. PLenty of games I watched where he just sat at first. Dusty said he always has a green light. Fine, he's obviously gunshy. FORCE HIM TO GO. Here's the sign, you run. Same with Hairston. 15 opportunities for a guy who once stole 29/40 bases? having trouble reading pitchers, gunshy? Fine, here's the sign, you run when I say, we'll hit behind you.

You can do that with Macias, Perez, Lee, Murton, Burnitz, Lawton, Holly, Barrett. etc. An aggressive style of play has EVERYTHING to do with the manager. Sure you wouldn't do it with a team full of strikeout hitters and tree trunks for legs, but that ISN'T this team.

Dusty's laid-back attitude would work great for a team like the Yanks or Red Sox, who are so full of hitters it doesn't matter. But he lets the inmates run the asylum and these inmates suck. Take some control!!!

Did we hire a new manager or is this Cub lineup a random occurrence? On paper, this is one of the most logical lineups that His Dustiness has come up with. If the middle of the order wasn't in a complete hitting funk right now, I would expect to score a lot of runs.

sorry john, sorry rob.

and on with the general TCR programming...

Wake Me When We Win. -RobG

Methinks I will start calling you Rob Van Winkle...

who are the 2 quality OF replacments on the angels and who would start on a lotta teams?

Does anyone think that the reason the Cubs play so poorly is because of bad scouting of other teams? The Cubs are always getting beat by guys who are always 0-19 or by pitchers who haven't recorded a win in 10 starts. Seems like other teams scout us very well and exploit our weakness, while we do no such thing to oppossing teams.

Rich Hill is starting to settle into a groove...His pitching looks good - so far...Yet, now we need our offense to produce. The Cubs have had real trouble scoring any runs early in the games that they have lost...It's time to change that trend...Baseball is all about momentum and The Cubs must regain that...Way to go Barrett...!!

Here come the Redbirds
Four of their starters are hurt
That won't help the Cubs

I haven't had a chance to see Corey bad since he came back up - any appreciable change in his approach?

vlad/anderson/finley/j.rivera

pick 1...

and chone...

that's 2 pimp bench options. chone esp. cuz he can fill in for almost everyone but 1st/C...

we shouldnt forget T.Salmon, too...but well...even though he's under contract it was a question whether he'd play up until the end of spring when it became clear he might not til late season, if then...

Is getting Aubrey Huff, a pipe dream?

Furcal makes a lot of sense at SS, if the tribsters will spend the money.

ND

Nomarwins the Cubs make bad pitchers look good because most bad pitchers have control issues and that Cubs have a lack of plate discipline.

"I haven't had a chance to see Corey **bad** since he came back up"

I vote that the most inadvertently accurate typo of the year.

Rich Hill is getting into some trouble...I don't like these walks...lets see if we can contain the damage.

i HATE pitchers who can't throw strikes.

BOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO

and the woes continue.........

That sound was the bottom falling out this inning.

OMFG this is like a bad dream. Every single day this team does something that just leaves you feeling sick to your stomach. 3 straight fkn walks? WTF is next? 4? lol this is truely an embarrasement. Its so fkn bad, its become almost hysterical because it seams to happen every ball game in one form or another.

You'll never see the cubs draw 3 straight walks and if they didn't, they probably still wouldn't score in the inning

and Rich Hill was the reason Hendry didn't pull the trigger at the deadline?

We kept this fuckin guy instead of getting soriano? WTFG Jim! Hendry has really been on a roll the last year. Time to send him packin with Baker!

The answer is simple...Fire Dusty now!

(just for the record) Bases are loaded in the 4th. Two runs walked in. Nobody out. Baker brings in Wuertz.

Freel immediately singles driving in two.

Then with one out, Griffey clears the bases with a two run double.

Yes, firing Dusty yesterday would've prevented Hill from walking the entire Reds team and Wuertz not being able to get anyone out. Brilliant.

the whole soriano thing was never confirmed...

besides, he's refused to play CF for the yanks and texas...what make anyone think he's ready to play a possition he's never played in his life on a whim for the cubs mid-season?

Why Wuertz as a Bullpen pitcher...? We needed strikeouts from experienced pitchers....Why not put in Wood or Williamson...?

"Furcal makes a lot of sense at SS, if the tribsters will spend the money."

Count me in as a oh hell no on Furcal his OBP sucks he is average on D. Plus he is a drunk the man has 2 DUI's do you really want him wrigleyville? The trib is spending a 100 mil so they will spend.

Im by no means a Baker fan and i think he has to go. However, it's time to stop blaming all of this on Baker. It has gotten so bad, that he don't play in the field and these guys are just horrible. The players have NO heart what so ever and don't even seem to care anymore. Can't pitch, can't move runners, can't field, can't do a fkn thing for their millions. Its time to start talkin about what players need to go and bashing them for this shit. Everybody wants Bakers head, but i see nobody bitchin and moaning about the players who are actually on the field. They fucking stink, period!!!!

I think it's about we start laughing and enjoying how absolutely awful this team is

Baker is the captain of the ship -- I feel he and his coaches should resign...it may be time to rebuild this entire organization.

Anyone watching the game? Was Wuertz properly warmed up?

And lets not forget the tribsters are only spending 100 mill because like 17 of it is going to sammy. Don't think for a second they will spend that next year. Next year will be about incorporating youth with Lee, Ramirez, Barrett and the core of the pitching staff.

Wow. This is bad. A new low.

With two out Dusty Baker IBB's Dunn.

Now he is standing on third because Wuertz has walked the next two. Cincy scores another run.

wuertz was properly warmed, he just blew it...and the reason he was brought in over wood/williamson besides workload/injury is wuertz is a groundball pitcher and a double play was badly needed.

unfortunately wuertz decided he didnt know how to pitch today...a common occurance from this pen all year.

We're in deep shit for next year without a quality CF, 2B, leadoff hitter. A staff ace and another starter.

I guess we're just in deep shit.

cubbynation...you are right. Dusty is getting 4 Million this year, but what about the other 100 Million dollars we are washing down the drain??
If Latroy got booed.. then all these loosers deserve to get booed every day they play at wrigley..I mean so booed that they will never ever dare to think to stoop to these levels again at wrigley.
-C

Why does everybody blame everything on Baker? Sure he is the manager and a good share of this is his responsibility, however the players put the gloves on and hold the dam bats. I played ball for years and i still had the heart to always play hard no matter what! The players fruggin stink and have quit. Get rid of not only Baker but some of these players must go to.

Intentionally walking Dunn down 7-1 was a very interesting move to say the least.

"I think it's about we start laughing and enjoying how absolutely awful this team is."

Agreed, Adam. I mean, I am actually smiling right now, reading the Trib blog of the game, and am close to laughing. Call it schadenfreude, call it masochism, but this is certainly some hilariously awful baseball that is going on. We're quickly descending to Royals or D-Rays hilarity. This will be a losing streak Sox and Cards fans won't soon forget.

I think Maddux is a prime Double play candidate in that situation.
I don't disagree, but one way to counteract that is to start the runner. Let's put that to the side and consider the two strategies, with rough estimates.

A Sacrifice Bunt Approach
1) How often is the bunt successful? Let's say 70%.
2) How often will Lawton get a base hit to drive in two (or walk and have Walker get the runs in)? Let's say 30%.
3) So 70% x 30% = 2 runs about 20% of the time.

B. Maddux Swinging Away Approach
1) How often will a DP end the inning? Let's say 50%.
2) How often will Maddux be retired but the man on third score? Let's say 25%
3) How often will Maddux reach base? Let's say 25% (including walks).

1) So, 50% of the time, no runs score.
2) 25% of the time, one run scores (and 25% x 30% = 7.5%, an additional run scores)
3) 25% of the time, there is one out when Lawton comes up and 2 or more runs are likely.

The percentages aren't rigorous, but I think they're reasonable. I like the odds in Approach B much better. Also, as much as I'd like 2 (or more) runs to score, the shift from 2-0 to 2-1 is more significant than the shift from 2-1 to 2-2. There are still three innings to play. (And not that it's truly fair to look ahead, but that 9th inning leadoff double looks a whole lot better when you're only 1 run behind.)

"the whole soriano thing was never confirmed...
besides, he's refused to play CF for the yanks and texas...what make anyone think he's ready to play a possition he's never played in his life on a whim for the cubs mid-season?"

Stark was reporting that TEX wanted Hill and Pie. Your 2nd point is valid though.

I'm sure we didn't set a record with 6 walks in an inning, but did we just set a record for most runs forced in by walks?

Cubby78, well said and 17 million was washed down from Steroid Sammy and the other 83 million was apparantley wasted on players with no heart. With the exception of a few. There are some guys on this team that i don't believe would ever quit, such as D Lee to name one. However, the rest of the money is a joke. Overpaid position players and pitchers who do nothing but steal money while they sit and watch most of the year from the DL.

1 run, and 3 hits in 3 innings. Not bad for a bullpen outing. But what do you know, the 2nd time through the line-up they figured out his one pitch.

Why is it so easy for me to see that Hill won't be a successful starter with just one pitch, yet the Cubs can't seem to figure this out?

So is it now confirmed that Rich Hill just is not a major league pitcher at this point in time? Maybe he will be with more work in the minors, but holy CHRIST was that bad. That said, good thing we had Wuertz at the ready to throw some gasoline on those flames...

The same reason Bleeding that most of us know the moves Baker makes are wrong. We seem to have as much or more baseball intelect as the people in charge of this shit team.

Because, Bleeding Blue, you clearly know more about the game than people who make their living in it.

Forget placing the blame on Baker, a better question is why keep him? What exactly does he do? At the very least firing him will send a message to the players that this isn't acceptable, and in the interim have a manager see if any major-league ready talent can hold down a spot for next season so there aren't 5-6 lineup holes to fix in the offseason.

Baker isn't cut out for this kind of failure, and I don't care that the players are the ones on the field, it won't be the first or last time a manager gets fired because his players quit, his fault or not.

"The same reason Bleeding that most of us know the moves Baker makes are wrong. We seem to have as much or more baseball intelect as the people in charge of this shit team."

Ehh, it's easy for us to be right all the time, when there are no consequences for being wrong. I think we overrate our baseball intellect in that regards, because none of us have had to live with our results.

Did we hire a new manager or is this Cub lineup a random occurrence? On paper, this is one of the most logical lineups that His Dustiness has come up with. If the middle of the order wasn't in a complete hitting funk right now, I would expect to score a lot of runs.
At the risk of incurring the wrath of Adam (and others), it's not that I "blame everything on Dusty," but I do think that he plays a big role in everything that goes on.

For example, I agree that this is a logical lineup, and I agree that one of the unfortunate weaknesses is that Lee and Ramirez are in a funk. However, that second part might have been avoided if
a) They (especially Lee) were given a day or two off weeks ago, when it was clear to everybody (except the manager) that they needed it.
b) Ramirez had batted fourth weeks ago, when both he and Lee were hot, so that Lee would not have been walked so much -- which got him out of his groove.

That's just a small example of how I think Baker has failed this team.

For those who want to blow this team up and start over, it's not like the Cubs would be dismantling the 2003 winners. That's already been done.

Correct me if I'm wrong, but of the 2003 Championship team only Zambrano, Prior, Wood, Ramirez and Patterson remain.

That said, good thing we had Wuertz at the ready to throw some gasoline on those flames...

LOL that was funny.

Honestly....the performance this year (and last) I'd say that Rothchild, Hines and Matthews should be terminated after this game. If Hendry is set on Dusty..even when Dusty has no answers and can't "police" (manage) this club because in his day they "policed" (managed) themselves...well it's time to can the coaching staff responsible for the horrible offense and horrible pitching.

For those who want to blow this team up and start over, it's not like the Cubs would be dismantling the 2003 winners. That's already been done.

Correct me if I'm wrong, but of the 2003 Championship team only Zambrano, Prior, Wood, Ramirez and Patterson remain.

Yes and that is Dusty's style....sign veterans and let them go after their contract expires..and replenish with more older veterans...

Rather than letting the farm system supply and replenish....

This is what you get long-term with Dusty's style of management. Unfortunately Hendry is giving Dusty what he wants.

firing dusty sends a message to the players he's sheltered that they're not performing well enough to stay. You can't fire the entire team in-season, though at this point I'm tempted to try.

It's about the success of the team. without firing dusty you have zero chance of making a run, which is certainly still possible. we're a whopping 6 games out.

Rob G.

Since this game is over and soon Baker's tenure as Manager will be what is your opinion on Bud Black as a possible manager?

After an endless top of the 4th, the Cubs needed only 11 pitches to erase themselves in their half of the inning.

Did Wuertz even sit down?

C'mon Adam, you don't watch games and just shake your head at the moves, lineups, etc... that are made? Living with the results or not, i still would like to believe that somethings are just obvious. Such as starting your best 9, not putting a backup IF in CF, batting 2 of the worst OBP hitters 1-2 in your lineup, and i could go on and on here but what good would it do? It wouldn't, this team plainly sucks. And as for Baker being to good for failure, how good has Baker every really been since he got here? We only won the div by 1 game in '03 thanks to the Brewers winnin 3 of 4 in houston to end the year. And other than going 19-8 in Sept '03, we have never had any other month under Baker where we were more than 4 games over .500. That spells out to consistent mediocrity. Ever wonder how the Giants blew a 5-0 8th inning lead to Anaheim in game 6 of the series only to lose in 7? Well look at the moves made by baker the past 3 years and you'll get an idea. I was never sold on baker, even in '03 you could see the bad in game managing skills. One good sept. from never making the playoffs with him!

good to see KKKKKorey back...3 ks in 6 abs now.

I'm remembering back to 7-10 days ago, when many people said the Cubs had no chance, the Astros were too good, etc.

Now, after watching the Cubs go 1-9 (soon to be 1-10) and play like crap, I think the above is probably true. But what I find remarkable is that, if they'd just played decent ball against ordinary teams (let's say 5-5), they'd be right in the Wild Card hunt. And if they'd played very good -- but not perfect -- ball (let's say 8-2), they'd basically be leading the Wild Card.

My point is that, as mediocre as the team had been up to a week ago, if they had just stepped up to the plate then, they'd be in good shape right now. I think there's a fine line between a bad team and a decent team, as well as between a decent team and a good team. As flawed as the personnel on this team are, I think that, with adequate leadership, they could have -- and should have -- contended for the Wild Card. But it's probably a moot point now.

we need julio zuleta to voodoo the bats again! just like in '01!

But with that said, i also believe that the players need to stand up and take acceptance as well for what has been going on. It takes bad managing and heartless players for this to happen with this much talent on paper. So no, its not just baker, but it starts there and its easier to get rid of 1 manager than 25 players.

Maybe it would help if all the Cubs players drew stuff on their hands: http://yoke.cc/handart.htm

Can someone explain to my why Rusch didn't get the start today after Hill got rocked in NY?

I believe 2 of CPat's 3 strikeouts have been looking...don't get me wrong a K is a K, and I am not watching it either, but a looking K is better than striking out on eyeball high fastballs

What is the longest loosing streak ever in the month of august?? Well If these players want some target they can go for that record. Its good to have your name on the infamous list if you cant make it to the famous..
-C

What is the longest loosing streak ever in the month of august?? Well If these players want some target they can go for that record. Its good to have your name on the infamous list if you cant make it to the famous..
-C

Update to #87, after reading DBT's #82, which said
"without firing dusty you have zero chance of making a run, which is certainly still possible. we're a whopping 6 games out."

I said the Cubs seasons was lost, but if they came ready to play tomorrow, a run would still be possible. And that's in spite of all the mistakes made in the first 110 games. The sad thing is, I don't believe that they will come ready to play tomorrow ... though I know Maddux will.

Its not that bad...if you take away the 8 lucky runs they have scored already, we are still winning...yikes

you know what we need?

TWO GRAND SLAMS!

Since this game is over and soon Baker's tenure as Manager will be what is your opinion on Bud Black as a possible manager?

As much as I'm tired of Baker, I think he lasts until next season. First sign of trouble and he's gone.

As for Bud Black, if he's a Scioscia clone, then I'm all for it. But I don't know anything about him. If he's responsible for their bullpen and how you have no need for a LOOGY and that you use your best pitchers in the most crucial parts of games, then I'm all for it.

But after signing Baker, the first big time manager this organization has seen in a long time, I think the Cubs will have to make an equally splashy move with the next manager. I don't know who that is, I still like Larry Dierker.

Here are today's starters #'s for August

Murton .111 (9 AB) 1 RBI
Walker .290 (31 AB) 1 RBI
Lee .188 (33 AB) 1 RBI
Ramirez . 219 (32 AB) 5 RBI
Garciaparra .235 (17 AB) 1 RBI
Burnitz .100 (30 AB) 1 RBI
Barrett .300 (20 AB) 3 RBI
Patterson .167 (6 AB) 0 RBI

Macias .312 (16 AB) 2 RBI

"Why Wuertz as a Bullpen pitcher...? We needed strikeouts from experienced pitchers....Why not put in Wood or Williamson...?
Posted by: Scott"

Those guys are Dusty's bullpen "experiments." They get used in garbage time.

Sure enough, Williamson is pitching now with the Cubs trailing 8-1 .

Maybe we'll see Wood later.

I am really frustrated at Hendry for recalling Corey. Horrible, horrible decision. 3 Ks in 6 ABs may be a small sample size, but so is two or three weeks of 'improvement' in AAA. We are watching the beginning of the end of his Cubs career. Hope I'm wrong.

"I said the Cubs seasons was lost, but if they came ready to play tomorrow, a run would still be possible."

Yes, and it's also possible that:

- Pigs will fly
- Hell will freeze over
- ESPN will stop talking about the Red Sox and Yankees 24/7
- Someone in the Bush Administration will be held accountable for ANYTHING

The incompetence is spreading. Did I just hear Wayne Messmer refer to "future Hall of Famer Ryne Sandberg"?

Sox win in 10!
South Siders take 2 of 3 from the Spankees in Nu Yawk!

Come to the light, my children.

Gosh, Haiku, that sure was clever making fun of my statement, taken completely out of context.

Oh, and let's talk politics anytime, whenever your easy assertions go beyond the depth of bumper stickers.

Messmer's been incompetent for ages. He's a great anthem singer, but a lousy PA announcer. He virtually never notes a substitution until about 5 minutes after it happens, and even then, he probably won't note the substitute's spot in the batting order; it's a scorekeeper's nightmare. Paul Friedman, who does weeknight games, does a much, much better job.

In fairness to Messmer, the weekend guy (Mike Tirsin) isn't much better, and has a grating, high-pitched voice on top of it.

Rob G.

On baker getting fired I would have agreed with you until that ATL series, but with how brutal this team is I don't think Hendry could survive from a PR standpoint if Baker is the manager going into next year. If Hendry and the trib want a big name the next manager will be Jim Leyland.

Retro,
I agree, but you'd think he'd know that Ryno was already inducted, wouldn't you? I don't even particularly care for his national anthems, especially how he says "Please join me, public address announcer Wayne Messmer . . ." I think it sounds ridiculous, introducing himself that way. Get somebody else to introduce you, or just say "And now, our national anthem" or some-such.

Gosh, Ron Dubya, you're right it was very easy to make fun of that statement. Lighten up. I know the sky is falling in Wrigleyville and all, but do you have to be so short-tempered about a mere baseball team, and a perpetually dissapointing one at that?

Trust me though, you don't want to get into the politics thing with me. Especially if your affiliation is as "red" as the veins in your forehead right now.

Besides that, I'm sure not many people on this board give a rats arse about either of our opinions regarding the ongoing misadventures of Preznit Chimpy McFlightsuit, the most vacationing cokehead preznit of all time...

One can not defend the indefensible. And that would be your position on both counts. Indefensible.

Retro,
I agree, but you'd think he'd know that Ryno was already inducted, wouldn't you?

Dude--did you read my post? I said he's an incompetent PA announcer.

Cards win 3-0.

The Redbirds completed a 3-game sweep of the Third Place Brewers in Milwaukee!

Come into the light, my children...

Careful, Haiku, a few of those incredibly clever assertions might be too long to fit on a bumper sticker.

But you sure had me laughing, the way that you changed "W" to "Dubya," made a joke about "red" state people, called the President that "Chimpy" name, etc. And I sure was impressed by that cogent logic that showed how anyone who doesn't see thinks as black and white (I'm sorry, as red and blue) as you do must be wrong.

I can't decide whether your immense intellect should be best served by a career as a stand-up comedian or a leading intellectual. But rest assured that I've never encountered anyone before who has awed me as much as you have.

if you were really from chicago you'd know you're just acting like a tool.

Hendry, don't we have enough heartburn without thinking about that crap? Come on. Let's get back to bashing dusty and hendry. next up, mcphail.

Time to tone it down, Haiku & Ron W. Create your own blog sites for your shenanigans.

Why exactly did Dusty send apitcher with a recently reconstructed arm out for a second inning in an 8-1 blowout?

Dude--did you read my post? I said he's an incompetent PA announcer.
Dude, did you read my first two words (which you also quoted), which said I agreed with you? I was simply adding that there's incompetence, and then there's incompetence. I think Mr. Messmer outdid himself today.

I'm sorry, Rhetoric Check, are you Rob G.? I didn't know you had adopted a new screen name.

Ron Dubya, its amazing how you seem to have a problem with people who see things as strickly "black and white". After all, isn't Chimpy the one who said "You're either with us or against us"? Not to mention all his ObiWan Kenobi-type rhetoric of "Good vs. Evil"?

Sounds pretty B&W to me.

But I digress.

I'll leave it at that and apologize to everyone here since I'm well aware that political comments have there own time and place in the blogosphere. Unless you're at yardwork.org, of course, where everything is melded into one sick stew of social/political/baseball commentary.

Ahh, never mind. Gameday was wonky.

"if you were really from chicago you'd know you're just acting like a tool." - #113 of 119: By dbt (August 10, 2005 01:40 PM)

I am really from Chicago, and I do know that I'm acting like a tool ;-)

Just having a little fun is all.

Everyone here seems a bit on edge. I wonder why that could be?

"Oh no! We suck again!!!"

Good lord. This has become like the damn mlb.com boards. This site, the last possible source of lightness and fun for this season, has reached official suckfest status.

Will everyone just get ahold of themselves?

One run aganist Milton that is sad! Who is going to replace Hill in the rotation. My guess is Pinto.

Hill hurt?

I always thought that Wood as the closer was a bad idea until now. He should be the 06 closer.

In a manner of speaking.

Hill hurt?

No chad he sucked big time today after what he did friday vs. the Mets I'll say his days in the rotation are done.

#119

I'll just point out that
1) You introduced politics to the discussion.
2) You apologized for talking about politics, only after you had so graciously given yourself the last word on the subject.

And that's my non-political end to that political "discussion."

And for those of you who think I've had a stick up my ass, you should check out post #90.

Game. Set. Match. Ron W.

I think in the internet land this is more commonly referrereddd to as "OWNED" or even "pwnd" or some such nonsense, but it does make sense.

When asked in a post-game interviewed if he was embarassed by his teams performance he answered, "No I'm not embarassed...I'm bewildered. I need to talk to Jim and see what we can do. I need Jim."

Okay..he's not embarassed by his teams performance....God help us all.

He's bewildered...doesn't know what to do...

and he is trying to deflect blame toward Jim Hendry..."I need to talk to Jim to see what he's going to do with this team to make it competetive."....

We really are in trouble aren't we?

re: #131

YM "zomg pwn3d" HTH

(You Mean, Hope This Helps)

#132:

I assume you mean Dusty said those things. And if so...that is simply unbelievable. Well then again this is Dusty we're talking about.

What is this guy's job?!?

Hey, did 4thandinches ever apologize, or has he been banned?

for those barking about Aramis not hustling there's this bit from cubs.com

http://chicago.cubs.mlb.com/NASApp/mlb/news/a...

"It may look like they're not hustling, but [Ramirez] hurt his leg hustling out a play to first base about a month ago," Baker said. "In order for us not to lose him for two weeks or more, we urged him to play smart. It's going to look bad, and sometimes the fans are going to think he's not hustling. But that's what he has to do."

So apparently they're not ready to trade Aramis yet as they're still defending him. Someone send the memo to Ron Santo :)

on the other hand, the article has this little bit to say about baker:
----
During his pregame session with the media on Tuesday, Baker was asked whether the Cubs were concentrating, and he dismissed it.

"There are a couple games, but all in all, I can't chastise them for not focusing and concentrating," Baker said on Tuesday. "I know when things are going poorly, it's a little more difficult to concentrate. We're just not getting it done."

Baker then did a radio interview Tuesday and took a stronger stance, saying, "We've had a total letdown in that area. It bothers the heck out of me, it bothers my coaches, and it bothers the players when it happens to them."

On Wednesday, Baker was asked to clarify.

"I said, 'At times,'" Baker said. "It's not an overall, long, extended, everybody issue. It's at times. There's a difference. If I contradicted myself, I'm sorry. It's at times. You've seen it. I've seen it, too. At times. Those are isolated incidents."

So the concentration problem is not a team issue?

"No, it's not," Baker said.
----
A little odd that cubs.com would point out something like that....I'm just sayin' :)

How about some positives from the game today - Nomar is starting to look pretty good. He is hitting the ball pretty well. I still say we need to resign him to a similar contract as this year, and have Cedeno ready to step in as a back-up.

as for the ramirez thing I disagree that he can't sit for an extended period of time. You just got swept by the Reds, I think you can put a cork in the season. Rest Lee, Rest Ramirez, cut open Wood, trade Lawton or Burnitz(or both), trade Rusch or Maddux (or both).

Now here's the thing. When you put Ramirez on the DL, YOU DON'T replace him with Jose Macias. You call up either Scott McClain or Mike Fontenot and you put them in the lineup everyday and just see what happens.

I wouldn't mind signing nomar either but I disagree about Cedeno. Pointless for him to be a backup unless he takes on the uber-role and plays 3-5 times a week for Nomar, Ramirez and Walker, which of course won't happen.

You do what the Cubs did this year, resign Neifi (and yes he will be resigned), BUT you fire Baker and then put in a manager who realizes that when/if Nomar goes down you call up Cedeno to play and Neifi STAYS the backup.

Rob, if you are ready to put a cork in the season then why the hell rest lee?

I meant for a day or two, he's appears gassed that's all. Sorry for the vagueness.

So? Its not like we need to save him for a stretch run.

COREY PATTERSON ON HIS TRIP TO AAA
__________________________________

Asked about tweaks to his batting style, Patterson's enthusiastic reply began with,

"Yeah, I mean, whatever."

Asked if his return to Iowa was a good experience, he added,

"Like I said, I really have no comment on that."

Is his confidence higher now?

"I have no comment on that."

Does he feel good at the plate?

"Yeah, sure."
_______________________________

Reported in this article.

so who's gonna start the "fireDusty.com" page...?

i'll be the first to sign...

I just heard on Comcast SportsNet that Hendry may be on the phone exploring how the Cubs could unload players like Burnitz, Hollandsworth and Rusch...Who knows if this is true BUT I think they should do it...What a frustrating season...It's time to think about next year...Lets give some promising Rookies a chance to play.

So? Its not like we need to save him for a stretch run.

Well, I for one would like something to look forward to the rest of the season. Whether it's watching some kids play or Derrek making a run at the triple crown. It's not something you can back into, you win the triple crown you earned it, so it's not like I would feel he backed into it or was doing it for personally glory.

Actually there already is a firedusty.com - it links you to firedustybaker.com

No, I did not start the site.

"Whether it's watching some kids play or Derrek making a run at the triple crown."

there's only 1 kid worth playing seeing as nomar's gotta try to earn his 9m bucks in 2 months of play.

we'll see Pie come up in sept...before his time...and get some pro coaching while 10000 messages light up the board wondering why he's not being given 100 ab's in sept.

still, there's a bright side for next season...all that's left to decide on is SS/CF/RF/1 starter/pen/bench and a good hunk of loot to do it with...

depending on how wood's winter goes we might not even need that 1 starter.

and from the dept. of the FCC probally going to ruin someone's career... (hopefully not, but i suggest people look at what's going on at the FCC and esp. the recent hirings of morality police)...

the dbacks are in full defense mode of mark grace after last night's explicative-laden broadcast...

"After the game, speaking to reporters while in the elevator leading to the stadium's ground level, Grace said there was a period in the early innings when he wasn't aware his microphone was live because of the ``talk-back'' problem."

and yeah...for anyone listening it was quite entertaining mark grace at mark grace's best...

hehe...

the dbacks say they will not internally punish him.

If Ramirez is not able to hustle and give 100% at all times because he isn't healthy enough then he shouldn't be playing....Ramirez at 75% simply is not that good. That in and of itself is enough to keep a marginally qualified Wild Card contender from ever getting there.

This team is so frustrating. I honestly don't know if I'm more upset with Baker, Hendry or the upper level management at the Tribune Co for allowing it to ever get to this point.

What did Mark Grace say?? details please

Probably talking about slumpbusters.....again.

I disagree about Cedeno.

I actually agree with you, but I didn't say it very well. If we sign Nomar, Cedeno stays in AAA. If Nomar gets hurt, Cedeno takes Nomar's spot in the starting lineup. You are right...Cedeno needs to be starting, not sitting on the bench. If he is not starting in the bigs, he needs to be starting in the minors.

Ramirez at 75% simply is not that good

And who is better? Macias? I would take 75% of Ramirez over any other possibilty at 3b the Cubs could come up with.

I think that needing to decide on only 1 starter poses a big problem for the team next year. I don't think Zambrano, Maddux, Prior, Williams, and Hill/mitre/whomever get us to the playoffs.
I wish we could Build off of Zambrano and Prior and find at least 2 more A or B level starters.
Right now (assuming Prior gets his act together...I see us going into next year with 2 "A" starters, 2 "C" starters, and 1 "D" starter.
Obviously, there is little to nothing we can do about Maddux, and I don't know how much faith we can put into Prior, but I'll assume the best. Maddux would make a very good 5th starter...but I don't like Williams as a 3rd or 4th starter on a playoff caliber team.

grace was basically commenting on moves being made and etc...

"get that fucking asshole out of here"..."like that's going to fucking matter."

along with other stuff...

oh..here's the gem...

"Snyder definately. Every fucking swing that guy takes is an underwater swing.

Snyder hit a fucking grand slam off of Remlinger and they released him. If this guy can hit a slam off ya get your fucking ass outta here."

wow.

Maddux was a 5th starter last year. The solution to the Starters is to get a better pitching coach who has the ability to work with them and help them with their mechanics. I'm sorry but either Rothchild isn't teaching them right or they aren't listening to him. At any rate the team is suffering because of it.

Wood is a starter and needs to be a starter. He needs a pitching coach who can work on his mechanics. Is there any doubt STL or ATL's pitching coach could do wonders with him? Or maybe even Mike Maddux? Whatever the reason Rothchild is not very effective with the pitching staff. They have the ability--but they need an effective pitching coach.

Regardless of the language - its an excellent point!

You think Dustys deal with the devil has expired?

From Desipio and our team walking in 3 runs with the bases loaded in one inning...

You donít walk runs in, you hit runs in...

(muffled voices in background)

What?

Speaking of pitching coaches...did Rothchild ever come out of the dugout in the 4th inning today? You know, when we walked three runs in?

I was listening to the radio, and did not hear about a pitching coach visit.

ton of loot....bare market.

Cubs 2006
Players under contract:
Barrett ($ 4 mil)
Blanco ($ 1.5 mil)
Lee ($8.67 mil)
Prior ($2.5 mil ALTHOUGH I THINK HE MAY BE ARB ELIGIBLE)
Ramirez ($10.5 mil)
Williamson ($3 mil)
Wood ($12 mil)
Maddux ($9 mil)
---
TOTAL $51.17 mill on committed contracts

Rusch ($2 mil PLAYER OPTION)
Walker ($2.5 TEAM OPTION vests with PA target)
Burnitz (Mutual Option of $7 mil or 500K buyout)
----
ARB ELIGIBLE
Korey
Zambrano
Hairston
Macias
---
And a bunch of auto-renewal players

Assume a $100 million payroll and I'll GUESS about $10 million in arbitration dollars if those guys stay. I think Burnitz gets bought out (if he's not traded first), Rusch might try the FA market as it's pretty bare. I think the team picks up Walker's option.

So a ballpark figure of $65 million committed for next year and $35 million or more to spend to fill

SS
LF
RF
Bullpen
possibly CF
possibly a starter

The big names on the market next year:

RELIEVERS
B.J. Ryan
Billy Wagner
Urbina
Farnsworth
Guardardo (Mutual Option)
Mesa (team Option)

STARTERS
Burnett
Matt Morris
Kevin Millwood
Jeff Weaver
Tony Armas Jr.
Jarrod Washburn

2nd Base (if you don't want Walker or don't think Mike Fontenot is good enough)
---
Durham (player option)
Grudz (thought he had some sort of option but it's not showing up anywhere)
Vina
Loretta (Team option)

Shortstop
---
Furcal
Garciaparra
Neifi
Royce Clayton
Alex Gonzalez (Florida)
Alex Gonzalez (Tampa Bay)

OUTFIELD
---
Damon
Jacque Jones
Matt Lawton
Burnitz (if option isn't picked up)
Brian Giles
Lofton
Larry Walker (Team option)
Sosa
Juan Encarnacion
Craig Biggio (he'll die an Astro)
Moises Alou (player option)
Preston Wilson
Jose Guillen (team option)
Carlos Lee (team option)
Randy Winn (Mutual option)
Carl Everett (team option)
Dmitri Young (team option)

First I'd trade pretty much any of our pitching "prospects" for a legit hitter if it comes available. The only players on that list that I think will be available that I'd go after are:

Billy Wagner
B.j. Ryan
Rafael Furcal
A.J. Burnett

and I don't know what the Braves plans are for Furcal and if they think Wilson Betemit is ready to take over. I also think B.J. Ryan will resign. Hendry is going to have to work some trade magic in my opinion and take on some contracts to improve this team.

THe D'Backs claimed a technical error on the Grace thing which I'm sure is true. I guarantee he thought he was off the air. No one is that stupid.

There are a couple of OF's who would be nice too - especially Giles or Carlos Lee.

And I would still sign Nomar over Furcal any day, with Neifi or Cedeno has a backup.

nice breakdown rob...

that said i'd hate to ryan or wagner on this team...ryan cuz he's not that good and wagner cuz he's gonna be too damn expensive...sorry, i just do not believe there is a reliever on this planet worth 8-10m bucks for 50-70 innings...no matter how important those innings are.

guardado is a question cuz of his injury durability...

i dunno...i'd have a hard time complaining about any of those 3, but damn...it'll probally cost a hunk of loot.

i think we might wanna assume hairston is gonne be the CF'r next year cuz he should be relatively cheap.

and unfortunately (or not, depending on how you feel about him) garciappara should be back next season.

given that shores up all the big spots but RF/LF (LF, which murton might win this winter)...there could be some interesting things done with loot next year.

"ryan cuz he's not that good"

i should clarify that seeing as he is good...but, well...he's gonna cost a lot based on his last 2 seasons.

My 2006 Cubs team:

C: Piersynski (7)
1b: Lee (3)
2b: Hairston (2)
3b: Aram(4)
SS: Nomar (5)
lf: Murton (8)
cf: Damon (1)
rf: Kearns (6)

Bench: Blanco, Branyan, Cora, Greive, T. Perez

Rotation:
Zambrano
Prior
Burnett
Maddux
Williams

Pen:
CL: Wood
SU: Dempster
7in: Williamson
Loogy: Ohman
Garbage inn. Guzman and Novoa

Staff:
manager: Terry Pendleton
bench coach: Grady Little
hitting coach: Ryne Sandberg
pitching coach: Bert Hooten
1st base coach: Vince Coleman
3rd base coach: Chris Spier

why not add pujols and dunn while youre at it?

why settle for murton and lee?

hehe

seriously though...aside from kearns and the total-coaching shake up....its a plausable list.

i dont think the cubs plan on using wood outta the pen if he clicks this spring, though.

might depend on how quickly and confident they are in whatever "closer" they sign.

and about grieve...he's had a pretty slow time of it in AAA, not really showing his power stroke and having a bit more trouble at the plate.

his walks and occasional power is all he's got going for him as it is :/

Chifan...what are you planning on doing with Barrett? And Hairston over Walker? Are you serious?

And Damon will be WAY overpriced. I hope that Hendry stays away from him.

Don't worry guys. It could be worse, we could be 20 games out in the division.

Yikes were are currently 19 out.

Don't worry guys. It could be worse, we could be as bad as the Reds.

Yikes we are only 2 games ahead of the Reds.

Breaking News: The Cubs and Reds franchises have agreed to a merger. The new franchise will be known as the Chicago Cubs of Cincinatti Ohio, playing out of Las Vegas, Nevada.

New lineup...

2b-Ryan Freel
SS-Felipe Lopez
1B-Derrek Lee
LF-Adam Dunn
3B-Aramis Ramirez
CF-Ken Griffey Jr.
RF-Wily Mo Pena
C-Jason LaRue/Javier Valentine

Bench

SS-Nomar Garciaparra - pending trade
1b-Sean Casey - pending trade
C/3b-Michael Barrett - pending trade
OF-Austin Kearns - bench keeper
SS-Rich Aurilla - bench
OF-Burnitz - pending trade

SP-Mark Prior
SP-Carlos Zambrano
SP-Aaron Harang
SP-Greg Maddux
SP-Jerome Williams

Closer-Dempster
Setup-Weathers
RP-Wood
RP-Williamson
RP-Wuertz
RP-Mercker

Ok the bullpen still sucks and the rotation is largely unchanged, but damn we take the Reds strength and the Cubs supposed strength and we got a complete team. I really like our bench to finish out the year though with this new team. WOW!

"Chifan...what are you planning on doing with Barrett? And Hairston over Walker? Are you serious?And Damon will be WAY overpriced. I hope that Hendry stays away from him."

Trade him to a team that needs a C for prosecpts.

Under this scenerio could be:
(Mets, Dodgers, Padres, Diamondbacks, Blue Jays, White Sox, Rangers, Mariners) Reason SD is on the list is because Hernandez is a FA after the year.

I picked Hairston because he has better D and speed than Walker and can get on base as much.

I think Kearns is plausible, I think we can do a bit better, but I don't who that is. The fact is none of our pitching prospects besides maybe Sean Marshall (who is on the DL now) and maybe Sean Gallagher (hasn't pitched above A ball) are all that fantastic. Guzman should be, but his injury rate is beyond alarming. There isn't a one of them I wouldn't trade if it gets us a big-time bat and a guy who can be around for a few years.

and why does everyone want nomar back? He's just too big a question mark I think and when the alternative is Neifi (and it will be), I want someone who I think has a better chance of staying healthy.

He's a very good defender, great speed, respectable OBP and still relatively young, (he'll turn 27 at the end of the month). If he's available and not making outlandish demands, I'd prefer him for 3-4 years over one year of nomar. I just don't know if you can trust Nomar to stay healthy anymore and his defense has become quite piss-poor over the last 3 years.

oh yeah, barrett isn't going anywhere, live with it.

i dont think kearns is movable cuz he's in the same possition in 06 as dunn is in 05...cheap without question.

and he'll most likely be worth more after a full year out there.

mopena/dunn could go this offseason, depending on how much they wanna spend in loot (or trade for) with their pitching. they only shifted randa, as expected, at the deadline and they gotta get something done with that crew of arms vs. what bats they got on tap.

Rob,

With Kearns i was keeping payroll in mind. I was trying to keep it under a 100 mil, and I thought Dunn would go over that. In my mind I had Burnett at 10, Damon at 8, Piersynski& Nomar at 5, Dempster & Williamson at 2, and Branyan& Cora at 1. Kearns will make 5 mill in arb at most and probably not that. On Nomar I think everybody wants him resigned because there is no other good options to replace him. I know you like Furcal, but I put my thoughts on him in post 54.

it just depends on the direction the Reds want to go I suppose. They should have enough revenue to keep Dunn if they wanted and go with an OF of Dunn/Griffey/Pena or Dunn/Griffey/Kearns.

I guess it's all about the direction they want to go and what they're getting in return but if they want to win then Adam Dunn is the guy you keep no matter the cost. They certainly should move one of those outfielders, do you really need 4 starting of's when you have such glaring pitching holes?

and about the SS issue...unless nomar want to give the cubs a low pay incentive laden contract, i hope they want nothing to do with him...

honestly, im not a fan of his esp. for what his base pay has been the past many years...i dont find his range to be all that and though he can catch, watching him throw is an exercise in excessive needless movement which leads to a lot of his problems. it destroys the purpose of his strong arm...and he's not really slick on the DP.

as long as the guy can scoop/throw and hit somewhere near .330 ob%...i say play him and pay him low...no need to bring the big loot in a guy who's gonna be overpaid cuz of his position vs. his real bat production (hello mike piazza).

the guy's had 2 serious injuries over the past 2 seasons. sure, he could come back play another 10 without even a blip, but given his limitations with his D already, i wanna see him play more before im ready to call him a SS worthy of playing his possition anymore...btw...so far so good, even though he's still doing useless things once he's getting his glove on the ball

and yeah..i do believe its almost a certain thing that nomar will be back..

there's just too much pointing to it..

joint statement from mlb + players union...

``Reports of large numbers of positive tests currently unreported are totally false. Reports of big-name players having the reporting of their test results delayed are totally false''

``All drug-testing results are processed in precisely the same manner, and without regard to the identity of any player or to the volume of positives at any given time. These media reports and rumors are totally, and completely inaccurate, and do not deserve further comment'

well that's your opinion on furcal but his defensive is really, really good. As far as NL shorstops go, it's him, Jack Wilson, Alex Gonzalez (FL) and Cezar Izturis, pick whoever you want as your top guy. His OBP is respectable. He's around a .340ish guy for his career and after a horrid start to the season he's almost back up there. .340 OBP with his speed is very good in my opinion at the top of the order.

If you're looking for boyscouts then, no, he's not your guy. As a player, I'm all for him.

Rob, I too am excited about the Angels, they being my hometown team. I really, really wish the Cubs were the Angels. Some might be surprised to hear me say that, since the Angels are no more a sabermetric team than the Cubs, but at least they play the non-sabermetric game right. It's like the Cubs expect baserunners to appear by magic or something ahead of the home runs they're always trying to hit.

And who doesn't love watching Vlad Guerrero hit? God I wish he were a Cub. He should be.

not that it matters, but a friend of mine had a great line about vlad signing with the angles.

He said, "The Angels are the smartest team in baseball and Moreno is a brilliant owner"

Me: Why do you say that?

Friend: Cause when you can sign Vladimir Guerrerro for $14 million a year even though your outfield is full, you do it.

Me: True, True.

I know hindsight and all, but Tejeda was avaialble for the same amount of cash and we didn't sign him because? Oh Alex Gonzalex was in front of him...Well we can't step on his toes.
Revisionist history probably but I'm still bitter.

I love miguel tejada but that guy is 1) a natural clubhouse leader and 2) very mercurial. When he's in a funk, man, everybody's in a funk.

alex sanchez DFA...ha and ha.

sorry, that's yesterday's news... =p

i just referenced it..heh.

jack mckeon's so oldschool he dont know what era we're playing in.

florida pulled a "hidden ball trick" out picking terrero off 3rd.

ow. hey, wonder if grace's mic button was fixed for that...hehe

So if the Cubs get swept in a 4 game series at home against St. Louis does anyone lose their job? or is it now politically incorrect to fire anyone according to the Cubs organization?

Why isn't Pie playing yet at West Tenn. He was suppose to be activated yesterday but he has not played yet. Please do not tell me the Cubs are lying about injuries again.

west tenn's hotest story currently seems to be sing's possible transition to RF...he's been playing there lately.

dunno about pie...

Speaking of missing out on Vlad and Tejada (which should have been no-brainers!) a couple years back - I am still upset about not signing Pudge when he wanted to be here especially since we all know what that led to...

You know 1 thing kind of bugs me. Baker was brought in to make a difference. Now when the Cubs are losing the manager suddenly doesn't make a difference?

In that case why are we spending $4 million a year and $16 million on a manager who doesn't make a difference?

Seems rather odd that Hendry would throw that kind of money at an individual who does nothing to help the team. We should of just hired a coach within the organization for $300k and used that money on players. Baker is certainly payed the kind of money to make a difference.

Just a thought. If our manager makes little difference then it will be no problem to fire him and get back to paying bargain basement for one.

Let's keep in mind that not all attempts at signing someone come through. With that said:

Based on Rob's information, I'd say you have to keep Walker. None of those players except Grudz would be an upgrade. I'm not a Walker fan, but the price is good. I'd also keep Rusch. Burnitz is a goner.

I'd try for Furcal, but most likely keep Nomar. He will probably stay at a reasonable price now. Honestly, Mia Hamm is probably the only reason I'd want him to stay though.

In the outfield, I'd make a serious run at Damon; then go after one of Cincy's outfielders if possible.

Keeping Maddux & Williams, you are virtually set at the starters position unless Wood is out. In that case, I still think Rusch deserves to pitch until he actually loses the job.

Farnsworth may be a good possiblity. I think Dempster is fine at the closer position.

With all that said, I still think Baker has to go. Some of the worse teams in baseball don't go through 3 seven-game (or worse) losing streaks. Think about that. We are 0-21. Think were we'd be if we won half those games.

BTW, Mike Lowell made my night tonight. The old hidden ball trick!

BTW, Mike Lowell made my night tonight. The old hidden ball trick!

just to be clear, Rusch coming back is his choice, not ours. I suppose if we guarantee him a starting spot and maybe an extension, then it's our choice, but it's a player option.

as for pudge, I would have liked the Cubs to sign him to a one year deal in 2003, the multi-year deal I'm not so thrilled about. He's pretty god-awful this year with the bat. And it's almost a universal rule that catchers start a rather sharp decline around the age of 32. Pudge will hit 34 in November.

That is what I meant - just imagine if we would have signed Pudge in 2003 instead of Florida...

What ever happened with the 4th and inches/Adam thing from last night? John Hill, has there been any bannination?

I like Furcal as SS also. His D is tops, he's an experienced leadoff guy, he's hitting his prime, he's a pretty fearless base stealer, he posts nice OBP -- up to.335 this year after a horrid start, and doesn't strike out too often.

BUT... He has a hard-ass like Cox keeping him in line. If Dusty is still here, Furcal will have someone to smoke weed with.

Looking at schudle with the next 7 vs. the Cards and Astros this looks like a 15 game losing streak.

he posts nice OBP -- up to.335 this year after a horrid start

.335 is not a nice OBP. It is just okay.

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