Is That A Threat?

In's Strike Zone Archives, you'll find a quick rundown of next year's free agents and a guess by the author of who they'll end up signing with. It goes position by position and even gives a sneak peek of the top free agents for the following year as well. Here's who they think will sign with the Cubs and their reasoning: Nomar Garciaparra Garciaparra again had his hopes of getting a multiyear deal dashed by injury. At this point, the 32-year-old should probably spend the rest of his career on one-year contracts. The Cubs will likely re-sign him to another incentive-laden deal, this one with a smaller guarantee than the $8.25 million heís receiving this year. If the Cubs decide to go in a different direction, Arizona would make sense as a destination. Garciaparra already trains there in the offseason. Prediction: Cubs - one year, $6 million plus incentives It also predicts a five year, $40 million deal for Rafael Furcal from the Arizona Diamondbacks. Here's a crazy thought and one that will most likely never happen, but what about moving Nomar to second base? Okay, I'm not the first to think about it, BUT, Nomar's defense is falling sharply. A move to second can only help, assuming he can learn how to turn the DP. Furcal is a defensive whiz and gives Dusty his speed leadoff guy that he so craves. We often overlook defense for gaudy offensive numbers, but right now we have 3 defensive liabilities in the infield and Derrek Lee can save them only so much. I like Todd Walker a lot, but his numbers are only slightly better then Furcal's and his defense at best, could be described as average. Just a thought... Preston Wilson Knee problems have put Wilsonís future as a center fielder in doubt, and if Wilson isnít a center fielder, heís not an especially valuable player. His career OPS stands at 812, and heís below that level now. Even though heís just 31, a multiyear deal isnít recommended. Still, if he finishes up OK, itís possible heíll get $12 million over two years or maybe even $18 million for three years. Prediction: Cubs - two years, $12 million If Preston Wilson is the answer, I'm afraid to ask the question. I'd happily live through another year of Korey and Jerry in center if it means we pass on Preston Wilson. Matt Lawton Lawton has an OBP right around .370 for the second season in a row, so he ranks somewhere among the top half of baseballís leadoff hitters. Even if his defense has become a problem, thatís worth a multiyear contract. The Cubs should be interested in re-signing him, unless they plan on making Jerry Hairston Jr. a regular in the outfield. The Dodgers, Nationals and Cardinals could look to add him to the tops of their lineups. Prediction: Cubs - two years, $12 million I'm all for keeping Lawton around, but it would have to be at the expense of Matt Murton and Jeromy Burnitz. In that scenario, Murton would have to be dealt for a stud corner outfielder with power (I'm looking at you Adam Dunn) cause you just can't have Lawton and Murton manning the two corner outfield spots. Although next year's outfield free agent crop is rather dry beyond Johnny Damon and Hideki Matsui (and I don't see any reason why either of those guys would leave their current teams), the 2006 group has a few good players. (* indicates an option) Barry Bonds, Gary Sheffield, Carlos Lee, Aubrey Huff, Torii Hunter*, Jim Edmonds*, Cliff Floyd, Mike Cameron*, Trot Nixon, and Shannon Stewart. Carlos Lee is quite an interesting player. The Brewers are trying to win now and I don't think they NEED to move Lee, but I also doubt they can get into a bidding war for Lee when he becomes a free agent. I find it unlikely that he'll get moved in the off-season, but a deadline deal next year is certainly possible. Murton and a Pitching Prospect for Carlos Lee? Would you do it? Some items to ponder while we figure out what to do for next year.


Since becoming a Cubs, Matt Lawton has ONE walk and ZERO SBs in 12 games, with an .259 OBP. In July, he had an OBP of .421 and stole 8 bases.

now THAT is true fluff journalism.

they gonna give us lottery #s next? how about predictions of the next terrorism targets or major earthquake?


still...just for the FA list itself its usefull.

Lawton needs to go ASAP. I would like it to be on friday when Hairston returns, but it will have to wait till the end of the season. If Nomar changes positions it would be to the OF. He is not going to replace Walker at 2b they are to close for that to happen. ARI won't spend that much money on Furcal. After the Nomar thing in April I remember Levine saying the Cubs were interested in him. I have to say I softened my stance on Furcal and if he is not going to Farnsy with the local bar scene I could go for him. Don't worry about Wilson Rob, Hendry wants Pie to be in CF ASAP.

nomar nor his agent would allow him to play OF right now...he's got a "line drive" arm anyway...he'd be useless anywhere but LF/CF.

give up the furcal offense, but the cubs have invested a lot of money in garciappara's promotion (and his wife, too) and so far its paid off well in merchandice sales. he's around at least another year unless someone really slams some loot down in front of his agent.

the "big" upgrade spot seems to be RF and if murton cant find his power stroke this winter, maybe LF...

patterson/hairston seem to have a lock on CF unless trades or something weird happens...both look to be a cheap-ish combo to sign for another year and it gives Pie some well needed time to break in.

I don't know what Hendry will do but I pray he gives a long look in Brian Giles direction.

What makes people think Hairston will be with the Cubs next season? I was under the impression he was unhappy here.

hairston's under club control and given his short-ish season and elbow injury...he shouldnt be too expensive.

even if he only sees 400ab's as a OF/2nd, he still should be cheap enough to justify it.

as far as his unhappiness...he came to the club happy that he would probally be a full time starter at 2nd...yes...he thought he'd be starting over todd walker.

then reality sat in and he pouted and kicked dirt and whined and no one cared. then he got his ego together just in time to contribute and eventually won patterson's job...then he got injured.

hairston "grew up" a bit more than he annoyed. still...he's no automatic given to be with the club next year. doubtful he'll be cut loose, but he could easily be trade bait in a slow 2nd baseman FA season.

he wants to start and honestly he could start for a lotta clubs.

When the Cubs picked up Lawton I went on record saying we'd regret it.

Wish I had been wrong, but Lawton has this history of fading badly at the plate after the All-Star break and so far he hasn't disappointed in that regard. Couple that with his weak defense and you have yet another 'subtraction by addition' situation in Chicago.

"the "big" upgrade spot seems to be RF and if murton cant find his power stroke this winter, maybe LF"


HR are over rated. What has hitting HR got this team the last two years? At the most two 3rd place finishes, and very possibly a 4th place finish. Cincy and Texas are 1st in their leauges in HR's and their a combined 32.5 games out of their division. What Hendry needs to do is find guys who know how to play the game. Guys that have more skill sets then mashing a ball 450 ft. Murton also is not going to play winter ball I don't believe he has done it in the past and why would he start when he is in the bigs to stay?


murton is not a leadoff hitter...period. he isnt, he isnt, he isnt.

im not making this decision, nor would any sane organization groom him to be one.

murton is a hitter...too good of a hitter to not play on his power...we're not talking 50 homers here, but he's not a guy who will bunt for hits or look at 30-40 steals for a season. at WORST he projects for a #2 hitter...that's if his power dont come around. when he learns how to pull effectively MORE THINGS HAPPEN THAT JUST HOME makes a pitcher KNOW they cant just pitch him in. righties are KILLING him with inside pitching cuz he cant get around on the ball as well as he can middle/outside.

did you see that homer to RF a few days ago? how can you NOT want him to learn how to pull? a guy that makes that good of contact you dont just put his career on the leadoff path. it would be a waste. murton's got 20+ hr power and it wont effect his eye or what he does on'll pimp his doubles, too. right now he's a RF/CF hitter and a lotta it is flat contact...he hits a lotta stuff to LF on/near the ground. it WILL be exploited by pitchers who can and advance scouts who notice.

and as far as murton not playing winter ball...that would be a HUGE mistake for his career unless the cubs brass has made his role clear for 06.


I didn't say that Murton should be or will be a leadoff hitter. He can learn how to pull the ball w/ a real hitting coach next spring. It is too huge of a injury risk for him to play winter ball when he could fix those problems in ST.

well...he's gonna do winter work anyway cuz he's been working on pulling the ball since he became a cub...he's had about 5 months to work on it and it isnt there yet...but unlike some guys learning what he's doing he makes such nice linedrive contact.

he's not far off...his main problem is pulling on the fast stuff..he doesnt get his hands in fast enough (though he gets the bat around) and ends up hitting off the skinny part of the bat.

there's gotta be some combo of hitting zone in the box that'll keep him hitting the outside stuff while turning on the inside stuff better.

yeah, it could happen this spring, but i just dont see the cubs counting on murton to play 162 games in LF when he's just a linedrive hitter who's exploited by righties unless he shows them he can do otherwise between now and march.

Anybody hear tonights lineup on the Score yet? I would assume it's

Anybody heard?

"yeah, it could happen this spring, but i just dont see the cubs counting on murton to play 162 games in LF when he's just a linedrive hitter who's exploited by righties unless he shows them he can do otherwise between now and march."

Henry Blanco hit like a god in Winter ball last year. I wouldn't personally change my opinion one way or anther. In fact winter ball might cost the Angels the AL west because K-rod, accoring to a Ken Rosenthal article this winter, was overused in winter ball and with how he has piched in the last week one has to wonder if that is coming back to haunt him.

I wouldn't personally change my opinion one way or anther {based on WB performance.}

#s dont mean crap...showing the club he can hit inside pitching and pull it does. even if he hits very ordinary #s he needs to show the organization he can hit inside and pull the ball or we might see someone else in LF or a L/R pitcher platoon situation. there's a lotta FA LF'rs out there and it wouldnt be too big of a trouble for the cubs to sign someone.

if murton wants to lock it down, he's gotta show it.

its better to show it in games that dont matter than to learn/practice in games that matter.

Murton has the same build as Sandburg did coming up, if I recall he hit some homers in his career.

"showing the club he can hit inside pitching and pull it does. even if he hits very ordinary #s he needs to show the organization he can hit inside and pull the ball."

Lee had that problem until age 30 and he fixed it w/o Winter Ball.

1- murton is 23
2- just cuz you want him to do something dont mean he will just cuz
3- his job for 06 is in real trouble if he doesnt do it
4- he has the ability to do it

and about the sandberg thing...he didnt start hitting homers til...umm...oh yeah, when he learned to pull the ball. and honestly, sandberg and murton are VERY similar.

except that Sandberg wouldn't have been a very good corner outfielder :)


seriously, much as i love murton he's not the best bet out there til he can come inside better.

righties are pounding himside and he's either making weak contact or missing totally. youre gonna see a righty 3/4 of the time in baseball.

that's a serious flaw...BUT...with murton's eye and his tools and his age...its far from a death sentence. he makes contact inside, but its mostly not good contact. he's close and there's not much left to plug up...hell, he looks a lot better than choi does handling the inside pitch...he at least makes contact.

"and about the sandberg thing...he didnt start hitting homers til...umm...oh yeah, when he learned to pull the ball. and honestly, sandberg and murton are VERY similar."

Sandberg did not play Winterball to learn how to pull the ball. He actully had a hitting coach who knew what in the hell he was doing. If he worked a whole spring with Sandberg could fix it or at the very least put a dent in it.

Did you hear the story on how got Ryno to turn on inside pitches?
He helped Ryno early on, and in games Frey would whistle before a pitch he wanted to Ryno to pull. He said in Montreal where there were no crowds, he would yell "Now Ryno!"

Get Fry in the dugout with an air horn.

"Sandberg did not play Winterball to learn how to pull the ball. He actully had a hitting coach who knew what in the hell he was doing. If he worked a whole spring with Sandberg could fix it or at the very least put a dent in it"

youre missing the point.

its not up to me...or you...or anyone's good intentions.

unless he SHOWS the club he can do it or the club commits to him to play...he will end up being a platoon or bench. there is no incentive right now to have him play inside until he can learn to hit inside and force righties to pitch him in other ways than just pound him inside.

as much as his #s look sexy, he's not gonna go up there and face 600ab's worth of lefties...and lefties that can go inside on a righty well (suprisingly small #s, blame the alluminum bat) will also get on his game.

Matt Lawton, LF
Todd Walker, 2B
Derrek Lee, 1B
Aramis Ramirez, 3B
Nomar Garciaparra, SS
Corey Patterson, CF
Jeromy Burnitz, RF
Michael Barrett, C

When I see Murton I can't help but think Eric Byrnes

When I see Matt Murton, I can't help but to think of Napoleon Dynamite.

murton can hit...he's just got a few tweaks to make...hopefully he can make it without wrecking his outside/middle plate dominance.

rumors have it Nomar is building a house in Wilmette. Who builds a house on a one year deal? Hendry and him have some sort of gentleman's agreement.

*Who builds a house on a one year deal? *

Multi-millionaires can afford to build a house wherever they damn well please.

Just how is it that we "regret" the Lawton move? What's to regret? That he's not smoking the ball right now? What if he hits .350 the rest of the way and scores a bunch of runs. Will we "regret" it then, too?

If Nomar does come back, it should be in left field. Cendeno plays short and bats eighth.

Murton needs some place to play. Dunno where it's gonna be.

If Nomar does come back, it should be in left field. Cendeno plays short and bats eighth.

Murton needs some place to play. Dunno where it's gonna be.

Including the ten players who are signed for 2006, the six players who will be arbitration-eligible after this season, and an expected additional ten auto renewal (pre-arbitration) players needed to fill-out the 25-man roster, the Cubs would have $83m in payroll committed for 2006. Thatís before any money is spent on free-agents.

However, if (as expected) the Cubs exercise their option to buy-out Jeromy Burnitzís contract for $500,000, and if (as expected) Glendon Rusch exercises his player option and becomes a free-agent, and if Jose Macias is non-tendered, the payroll committed for 2006 would be reduced to $74m.

The Cubs payroll for 2005 was in the neighborhood of $90m, plus an additional $20m in severance and buy-outs involving Sammy Sosa, Moises Alou, and Mark Grudzielanek. So the Cubs were actually spending $110m in salaries for 2005, with $90m of that spent on players who were actually playing for the Cubs.

If Hendry had been unable to trsde Sammy Sosa, and had thus not acquired Hairston or signed Burnitz, the Cubs payroll for 2005 (with Sosa on the team) would have been about $105m. So $105m was apparently Hendryís payroll budget for 2005.

Since the Cubs went ìover budgetî by about $5m by signing Burnitz (HaIrstonís salary was an even exchange with Kyle Farnsworthís), that means that IF the payroll budget for 2006 remains at the same level it was for 2005 ($105m), minus the $5m that Hendry went over-budget to sign Burnitz, that would mean Hendry would have about $26m in payroll (the difference between $74m and $100m) to spend in 2006 salaries (signing free-agents or trading for players with substantial 2006 salaries) during the off-season. Of course, itís also just as possible that the Tribune Company could cut Hendryís payroll budget for 2006 to $95m or even down to $90m). But letís say it stays the same as 2005, and Hendry has about $25m to spend in 2006 salaries for free-agents and/or players acquired in trades.

Primary needs (at this time) would seem to be a middle-of-the-order slugging RF, a closer, and possibly a starting pitcher (thatís if Kerry Wood is permanently moved to the bullpen). The pickings are slim, but the best free-agent corner outfielders capable of playing RF likely to be available would probably be Jacques Jones, Brian Giles, and current Cub Matt Lawton. Giles and Lawton are better players, but Jones is five years younger. It seems more likely to me that (for better or worse) Hendry will package a couple or three young pitchers and make a deal for somebody like Austin Kearns instead. If Wood is in the bullpen, he could be the closer, and then the Cubs would probably need to go after a front-line starting pitcher to replaqce Woody in the stsarting rotation. A. J. Burnett would be the best one available among free-agents, but there will be a lot of competition to sign him and the offers could get totally outrageous. Jeff Weaver is under 30, has had a decent season for the Dodgers, and could be a second option if Burnettís price goes way out of sight. Or Hendry could (as happened with Matt Clement a few years ago) acquire a quality starting pitcher in a trade. (That would probably require some serendipity, however). Or the Cubs could take their chances and hope that Angel Guzman, Sergio Mitre, Todd Wellemeyer, Rich Hill, or Renyel Pinto (or somebody else from the farm system) will emerge as a reliable starting pitcher.

If Wood is healthy and can return to the starting rotation (although unfortunately that probably wonít be known until Spring Training) , then acquiring a closer would be a priority, and the best ones likely to be available (among likely free-agents) would be B. J. Ryan, Billy Wagner, and (yes) Ryan Dempster. I canít see trading for a closer, because there arenít any good ones out there who would likely be available in a trade. I would expect the rest of the bullpen to be built "in-house," with the likes of Scott Williamson, Roberto Novoa, Will Ohman, Michael Wuertz, Jermaine Van Buren, Bobby Brownlie, et al. And possibly Kerry Wood.

Signing Derrek Lee to a contract extension (probably $50m over four years, 2007-10) will probably be another priority for Jim Hendry during the coming off-season, although if accomplished, the salary spike for D-Lee probably would not be seen until the 2007 season and would be offset (with about $20m left-over) by other players (Maddux, Walker, Hairston, and possibly Kerry Wood) leaving the team after 2006.

Another concern for Jim Hendry during the off-season will be Aramis Ramirez, who has a player option to be a free-agent after next season. During the coming off-season, Hendry may try and get Ramirez to give up his player option for 2007 in exchange for the Cubs guaranteeing the contract through 2010 (itís presently guaranteed only through 2009, with a club option for 2010).

Giving D-Lee a contract extension through 2010 and guaranteeing A-Ramís contract through 2010 would keep the offensive core of the Cubs together for another five seasons (2006-10), during which time Matt Murton (LF), Felix Pie (CF), and Ronny Cedeno (SS) will (hopefully) become established and productive major league players. By the end of the 2010 season), Lee will be 35, and Ramirez will be 32, and it will probably be about time to go in another direction at 1B and 3B.

** Jeromy Burnitz (mutual option for 2006, with club buy-out)
Chad Fox
Nomar Garciaparra
Ben Grieve
Ryan Dempster
Todd Hollandsworth
Matt Lawton
**** Greg Maddux (vesting option for 2006 if 187.1 IP in 2005)
Neifi Perez
*** Glendon Rusch (player option for 2006)
* Todd Walker (club option for 2006, or possible vesting option if ???? PAs in 2005)
* Scott Williamson (club option for 2006)

Michael Barrett - $4m
Henry Blanco - $1.5m
** Jermoy Burnitz - $7m (mutual option, with $500,000 buy-out if club excercises option to terminate)
Derrek Lee - $8.67m
**** Greg Maddux - $9m
Aramis Ramirez - $10.5m
*** Glendon Rusch - $2m +$1.2m in bonuses for games started (player option)
* Todd Walker - $2.5m (club option, or vesting option based on ??? minimum plate appearances)
* Scott Williamson - $2m (club option)
Kerry Wood - $12m (also has ìno tradeî clause in contract through 2006 season)
TOTAL FOR PLAYERS SIGNED FOR 2006 ñ $60m (approximate)

Henry Blanco
Jeromy Burnitz
Jerry Hairston, Jr
Derrek Lee
Jose Macias
Greg Maddux
Aramis Ramirez (player option for 2007)
Glendon Rusch
Todd Walker
Scott Williamson
Kerry Wood (club option to pay $13m salary in 2007 or $3m buy-out, plus player option to be a free-agent after 2006 season if 400 IP in 2005-06 ñ also ìno tradeî through 2006 season)

Jerry Hairston, Jr - $1.8m (+$300,000 in incentives) salary in 2005
Jose Macias - $830,000 salary in 2005
Will Ohman - $325,000 salary in 2005
Corey Patterson - $2.8m 2005
Mark Prior - $3.55m salary in 2005
Carlos Zambrano - $3.76m salary in 2005
NOTE: Jerome Williams could qualify for arbitration as ìSuper Twoî ñ TBD
ESTIMATED TOTAL SALARIES FOR PLAYERS ELIGIBLE FOR ARBITRATION IF ALL ARE TENDERED CONTRACTS FOR 2006 - $21m (Zambrano $7.5m, Prior $6m, Patterson $3.5m, Hairston $2.5m, Macias $1m, and Ohman $500,000, plus $1.5m for Jerome Williams if ìSuper Twoî).

Davis Aardsma
Ronny Cedeno
Mike Fontenot
Adam Greenberg
Angel Guzman
Rich Hill
John Koronka
# Jon Leicester
Richard Lewis
# Sergio Mitre
Matt Murton
Roberto Novoa
Renyel Pinto
Russ Rohlicek
Geovany Soto
# Todd Wellemeyer
Jerome Williams (or could qualify for arbitraion as ìSuper Twoî- TBD)
Michael Wuertz

Jon Leicester
Sergio Mitre
Todd Wellemeyer

David Aardsma
Ronny Cedeno
Angel Guzman
Richard Lewis
Roberto Novoa
Will Ohman (must clear waivers to be optioned)
Corey Patterson (must clear waivers to be optioned)
Renyel Pinto
Jerome Williams (must clear waivers to be optioned)

Mike Fontenot
Rich Hill
John Koronka
Mark Prior (must clear waivers to be optioned)
Russ Rohlicek
Geovany Soto
Michael Wuertz
Carlos Zambrano (must clear waivers tro be optioned

Adam Greenberg
Matt Murton

John Koronka
Jon Leicester
Richard Lewis
Russ Rohlicek

Bobby Brownlie
David Kelton (six-year minor league free-agent
Carlos Marmol
Sean Marshall
Ricky Nolasco
Felix Pie
Jae-kuk Ryu
Brandon Sing (six-year minor league free-agent)
Jermaine Van Buren (six-year minor league free-agent

Cliff Bartosh
Enrique Cruz
Nate Frese
Talley Haines
Mark Johnson
David Kelton
Casey Kopitzke
Tim Lavery
Michael Mallory
Scott McClain
Kevin McGlinchy
Calvin Murray
Phil Norton
Cody Ransom
Brandon Sing
Jermaine Van Buren
Aron Weston
Enrique Wilson

Josh Arteaga
Thomas Atlee
Dwaine Bacon
Federico Baez
Chadd Blasko
Bobby Brownlie
Rocky Cherry
Robinson Chirinos
Matt Clanton
Buck Coats
Kevin Collins
Jon Connolly
Matt Craig
Matt Creighton
Brian Dopirak
Yorkin Ferreras
Jacob Fox
Jordan Gerk
Lee Gwaltney
Luke Hagerty
Micah Hoffpauir
Nic Jackson
J.. J. Johnson
Aaron Krawiec
Drew Larsen
Carlos Marmol
Sean Marshall
Juan Mateo
Casey McGehee
Luis Montanez
Scott Moore
Ricky Nolasco
Sean OíMalley
Paul OíToole
Billy Petrick
Felix Pie
Carmen Pignatiello
Victor Ramos
Robert Ransom
Clay Rapada
Jose Reyes
Alan Rick
Carlos Rojas
Jae-kuk Ryu
Jonathan Searles
Andy Shipman
Aaron Sisk
Jemel Spearman
Jason Szuminski
Anderson Tavarez
Ryan Theriot
Raul Valdez
Carlos Vazquez
Chris Walker
Randy Wells
Jason Wylie

I have heard conflicting things about Felix Pie. According to Johnathan Mayo, the cubs are indeed drooling over him, and projecting him as the starting CF in 2007, not 2006. What's the deal?

AZ Phil, my hat off to you. A most amazing article on the Cub organization that I have seen in a long time.

A quick thought. Derek Lee at 35 with the Cubs makes me feel a tiny bit uncomfortable. DLee's a favorite of mine but I don't expect him to match his 2005 numbers next year, let alone until 2010.

Anyone else think that Derek will regress a bit in 2006?

AZ Phil - that was an awesome post. Intellgent and informative. I'm glad I stayed on until your post.


i chimed in before on a similar breakdown by you az, but yeah...good job.

is sing really a 6-year, btw? i know he broke in as an 18 year old outta the draft but does AZ league time count for service time on the FA level?

as far as that list goes...if the ops of the site are looking for vacation filler to keep us entertained...wait for a slow day and toss that post up there for a discussion thread.

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  • rare air though if he can keep it under 2. Sounds like Maddon already made up his mind though and Hendricks seems like the sort that would want to earn it. Guessing he gets a quick hook if he's still under 2 after 5 innings.

    Fwiw, he can give up 1 ER in 5 innings (or more) and still be under 2. If he gives up 2 ER, he would need throw 9 IP to keep it under 2. 1 ER in 4 IP would give him an ERA of exactly 2.

    In terms of WAR, it's still Scherzer by a lot (6.4), then Cueto (5.6), Lester (5.5), Kershaw (5.5), Roark (5.4), and then Hendricks (5.1)

    Rob G. 20 sec ago view
  • Boring lineup tonight in terms of guys trying to reach milestones -- no KB (40 HR), Addy (100 RBI) or JHey (can he keep it going?), and Lackey isn't really going for anything, plus the team has already reached 100 wins. I get the "rest" thing, although they will have 4 days off after Sunday, but....bleh.

    billybucks 44 min 27 sec ago view
  • Agree -- I think you want to keep him on a regular schedule.

    billybucks 1 hour 3 min ago view
  • Ramos torn ACL

    jacos 1 hour 31 min ago view
  • Sure, its not about his record.

    jacos 1 hour 33 min ago view
  • Do you start him Sunday or not?

    @jonmorosi Pitchers w/ sub-2.00 ERA in year of 185+ IP this century: Pedro ’00, Clemens ’05, Kershaw ’13/’14, Arrieta ’15, Greinke ’15, Hendricks ’16.

    Rob G. 2 hours 54 min ago view
  • Yeah -- that would be rough for him. But, Monty is getting people out, he's a lefty and he has experience working out of the bullpen. Hammel? None of the above.

    billybucks 3 hours 49 min ago view
  • even if he's not starting, abandoning hammel would be a bit of a 'screw you.' i think it might be -monty +hammel, but it's speculation.

    either way, someone's gonna be disappointed.

    crunch 4 hours 51 min ago view
  • Joe said he is leaning towards 11 pitchers and 14 position players.

    - 4 starters, Chapman, Rondon, Strop, CJ, Wood, Grimm, Monty. No dice for Cahill or Smith.
    - 3 catchers, Rizz, Zo, Addy, KB, Javy, Heyward, Fowler, Soler, Coghlan, TLS and then Sczcur over Almora?

    billybucks 5 hours 2 min ago view
  • Cubs 3B Jason Vosler made two really bad throws on consecutive AB in the 8th. Fortunately the game was no longer in doubt at the time  

    The first one was a one-hop lob that allowed the batter to reach base on an infield single, and the second was air-mailed so far over the first-baseman's head that it went over the fence and landed in Field #4.

    Arizona Phil 5 hours 36 min ago view
  • E-MAN: Despite the HR, Donnie Dewees is really more of a slash hitter (the HR was an opposite-field line-drive) who can accumulate lots of doubles & triples. He's also a good bunter and can get on base that way, too. Although he was thrown out trying to steal in the game, he's actually a good base-stealer and baserunner.

    Defensively he has plus-range and tracks fly balls OK, so he can play CF, but he has a rag arm that requires the middle infielders to go out further into CF to make relays.

    Arizona Phil 5 hours 38 min ago view
  • I don't know how many of you remember Bobby Knoop, who played 2B for the Angels, White Sox, and Royals back in the day, but he is a coach-emeritus for the Angels, and works with the infielders at Minor League Camp, Extended Spring Training, and Instructs. He's pretty spry for a 77-year old, and he really knows his shit.

    Arizona Phil 6 hours 5 min ago view
  • With a big lead, Chapman was throwing sliders and changeups, something he's reluctant to do in a save situation. (Len and Jim covered this.)

    VirginiaPhil 6 hours 14 min ago view
  • Maybe they have a bad owner, I don't know, but they still have players and fans and a franchise, all devastated by this loss of life. Plus, everybody who follows baseball is a fan of a guy like this. It's why I used the word tragedy, which other people throw around but I try to be careful with.

    I'm at an age where I remember old incidents better than recent ones, but I have to go back to Herb Score for something as disturbing.

    VirginiaPhil 6 hours 30 min ago view
  • That was Dee Gordon's only HR this year. Wow.

    billybucks 6 hours 31 min ago view
  • Thank you PHIL.

    Glad you avoided temps in the 100s.

    I remember you mentioning Dewees needng plenty of work in th IF. How are his OF instincts?

    Also, did see much of Satchel McElroy? Only Satchel I have heard about other than the "orignal" and one of Woody Allen's kids.

    The E-Man 9 hours 17 min ago view