Nobody Knows Nuthin': The Roberts Rumor Mill Churns On

Jeff Zrebiec of the Baltimore Sun, appearing Monday night on WGN Sports Central with Dave Kaplan, said he expects the Cubs and Orioles to reach agreement on a trade involving Brian Roberts in "a week to ten days."

Zrebiec disagreed with Kaplan's suggestion that the talks have "heated up" in the past few days; he thinks the discussions have been on a steady, low simmer since they began. Bottom line: Zrebiec said he's confident Roberts will be in Cub blue by Opening Day.

As to who the Cubs might be shipping east or at least whom the O's might want, the usual names were brought up: Gallagher, Cedeno and/or Patterson, Pie, Ceda. (No mention of Donald Veal.) Zrebiec said the O's are especially high on Gallagher and see him as a potential #3 or maybe even a #2 starter. No such love for Matt Murton, however. According to the writer, the Orioles think Murton will require 400-500 at-bats a season to be an effective MLB hitter, which he won't get in Baltimore if he's part of a platoon arrangement with, say, former Astro Luke Scott.

On an unrelated front...

Kaplan also spoke tonight with Chicago Tribune architecture critic Blair Kamin. In the course of that conversation, Kaplan said his sources tell him that the Cubs are talking deal with a major, Chicago-based corporation which would pay less than the $40 million bandied about for naming rights. The company would be paying for "significant" signage all over the ballpark but would voluntarily forego renaming the park and in a selfless gesture of corporate goodness, allow the place to remain "Wrigley Field."

Nice folks, those selfless, major Chicago corporate guys.



the brian roberts trade saga has more lives than a crappy middle infielder on Jim Hendry's libido.

Wow... I don't really get it.

I really don't get how K-Pat's best offer was a minor league contract.

Don't get me wrong - KPat isn't going to be an all-star anytime soon, but he is good enough to get some legitimate offers, and even opportunities to start.

"Nice folks, those selfless, major Chicago corporate guys."

Sounds like in this case, you are right. I hope this is true.

I was being sarcastic (my usual state). It strikes me as a rather brilliant solution to the problem any company would face if they were the ones to soil the character of Wrigley Field by rebranding it. Of course, Walgreen's or McDonalds or whoever will spare no expense or forego any public relations opportunity to let us know how swell they are.

feels like it's lasted longer than the whole Santana and Bedard trades put together.

I'm still peeking at the MVN blog to see if there are a few stragglers over there, but I think we've been able to pull them out of the water and brought them over here.

Mostly just flies there now.

I wish they'd hurry up and get this trade done, no way we can play this season with only 5 second basemen.

Do we know how he fits into the team or are we just obsessed because it's a trade? I'm cool with that, I just want to know. Obviously, the point of the trade is for his bat, since we're not exactly hurting at 2B, does Derosa move to SS? Roberts to CF?

If we end up giving Cedeno, Marshall/Gallagher, and EPat/Veal, then I'd be okay with that. Gallagher would be nice to hang on to but you have to give up something to get it. EPat's great but he's blocked in OF and can't play 2B in the Cubs' mind. If it's more than that, we ought to pass. I think Roberts would upgrade the team noticeably in terms of his speed and the resulting readjustment of the lineup, but I don't want to give up Pie or any other key part to get him. I think this team still could use a bit more of an offensive upgrade, but I think SP may be our weakness this year.

I'm hoping the O's are looking for a pitcher. Seems like we have an extra or two of those laying around.

Pinhead starting to realize at 10 HR high OBP guy is better at #2 than #3 in the lineup... Guess he got 'comfortable' quick.

The best thing about the Roberts trade is that it will keep Theriot and Pie down at the bottom of the lineup, when Theriot does play. You would have to think that Patterson at second was for the Orioles scouts. Cedeno and Patterson as the keystone combo would at least make fans happier about losing Robertson (hey, we got two starters for 1!), and I think in that relatively low pressure situation the two of them will do well, so Manny can complain more about Hendry. Maybe Fox is on their radar with the way he's hit so far in the spring. He doesn't seem to have a place to play with us, but Baltimore could get him time at LF/1B/DH if they like him.

The title says it all. I wish the rumors would just go away. How many times do I need to be told that the Orioles want Gallagher, Marhsall, Cedeno, Murton, and my mom?

Well, who DOESN'T want your mom? Hiyoooooo!

Yeah, it's pretty tiresome at this point. Everything that happens until he's a Cub has become white noise.

How's her arm?

Well - it has taken me a while, but I now would agree with most of your assessments - Ryan Theriot is not very good.

Between he and Cedeno, as it stands, he'll make less mistakes in the field.

Probably, batting 8th he'd be ok.

As for Pie, he STILL is not ready for Prime Time. My guess: HEndry is trying to make a deal for Crisp. Perhaps Marquis would be the guy to go?

She's in the 45 - 49mph range, but she's crafty.

Your mom is Jamie Moyer? Cool!

No, she's a righty. That's why she's out of a job. Now if she was a lefty, I'm sure she'd be in someone's rotation at this point, despite being 50+ years old.

"As for Pie, he STILL is not ready for Prime Time. My guess: HEndry is trying to make a deal for Crisp. Perhaps Marquis would be the guy to go?"

I am not a Jason Marquis fan but we need to be careful about trading him right now. I hated his comments the other day, but there is no denying that he helped carry our SP staff last April and May. We also don't know what we are going to get out of Lieber and Dempster in the starting roles. We also don't know if Marshall's stiff shoulder will hold up for an entire we already have two lefties with big breaking balls and a high fast ball

"Well - it has taken me a while, but I now would agree with most of your assessments - Ryan Theriot is not very good."

Welcome to the club. Let's just all hope that if we do trade for Roberts, Piniella realizes that DeRosa is the better option at SS.

That makes a lot of sense except DeRo can't play SS! DeRo is what 33 y/o and has less range than he had with the Braves where he occasionally played SS. He is a poor defensive second baseman and now we will ask him to man the SS position. I am suprised that you did not suggest Murton over Theriot.

"That makes a lot of sense except DeRo can't play SS!"

Theriot is below average at SS, both defensively and offensively. It is tough to think DeRosa would be more anything more than a slight downgrade defensively, if that, but a clear upgrade offensively, more than making up the possible defensive downgrade.

Manny - that's very logical! So basically there is no basis to your conclusion just that you think that DeRo can't be worse than Theriot. Look I know you hate Theriot and I am not here to defend him because its useless but unless we have someone better to play SS I don't see what all this crying is going to get you.

How many times do we have to have this same conversation? I mean seriously, what's the point? Is it your goal to bash Theriot as much as possible? Do you think you will eventually wear everyone down and convince everyone who visits TCR that you are right? Even if you do that, what do you really gain?

Just remember last year you were saying the same stuff about DeRosa. You hated the signing, said he should never be a starter, thought he would contribute to a very weak bottom third of the order, etc.

And I'm not criticizing you for being wrong. We've all been wrong. It's just that after being wrong most of us realize there is that possibility when talking about the next guy. You act like Theriot is the worst offensive and defensive shortstop we could find and that you will 100% be proven correct as the season goes on. I for one hope he has a tremendous year.

He is a poor defensive second baseman

Since when is DeRosa is a poor defensive 2b?

Since Rory got on this kick that DeRosa can't play SS. the White Sox radio color analyst. Chris Singleton is going to Baseball Tonight and Steve will be taking over for him.

Steve Stone is the best baseball analyst I just wish the Cubs had the brains to bring him back. Now I have to watch the Sox!

"Now I have to watch the Sox!"

Have fun with that. Make sure to fill us in every once in awhile on how Ozzieball is going.

Of course if you watch the Sox, you'll need to turn down the volume on the tv and turn up the volume on the radio to hear Stoney.

Only six bids in the CBOE seat auction so far.

Stone with Ozzie and the White Sox = a match made in heaven!!

Brett Favre has retired.

Brett Favre has retired.
maybe Hendry will sign him...he throws harder then Lieber...observers of his fastball say he's throwing "cheese"

Farve in the 5th

On another note I hope this naming rights crap goes away soon and we can get on to the business of who will actually own our team and winning a WS.

You stationed at Ft. Campbell I assume airassault?

Contract talks have slowed between Favre and the Cubs...apparently they will not let him wear Wranglers when he pitches. The Cubs are also unsure of how affective his best pitch will be...the running underhand flip/toss

I think that might be a balk.

Out for what could be two weeks or more.

I knew when i found out in Parachat that he broke part of his finger he would be out longer than the 5-7 days they initially reported. You just can't mess with the fingers on a batter, it screws up how they swing the bat and it needs to heal. 5-7 days much less 2 weeks isnt going to heal this type of injury.

Well now he gets to rest his legs too.

Can he play 2B?

Favre and Samalamadingdong playing catch at HoHoKam...priceless.

So in basically one year, Korey went from being the target of Disty's ire against youth and now is a "proven veteran" with speed and "intangible" skills...Because, y'know, that Jay Bruce guy is kinda unproven.

The Reds could have been a dangerous team in this division if they committed to Phillips, Votto, Bruce, Encarnacion in the field and Bailey and Cuerto as starters. But it looks like a slow-motion train wreck.

Talk radio here in the Natti is questioning the signing because Norris Hopper and Ryan Freel have higher OBP and are both speedy. I'm not sure where Hairston fits in except maybe to give BPhillips a day off here and there...

Rest assured. Freel will see plenty of time ahead of Encarnacion, and Hopper will handle left when Dunn goes to 1st base to play ahead of Votto. This is just Dusty covering his bases. Has anyone seen Wayne Krivksy and Jim Hendry in the same room yet? They might actually be the same guy.

Dunn can't play first base. They tried that when Sean Casey left town. He's not leaving LF as brutal as he is out there.

Yeah. It won't be Dunn blocking Votto at 1B. It'll be Scott Hatteberg. I bet the Reds will on a weekly basis field a line-up of Hairston at 2B, Keppinger at 3B, Korey in CF, Hatteberg at 1B, and even sometimes Hairston in RF to give Griffey a breather.

Should we start a contest, trying to find out what "major Chicago-based corporation" is?

I'm thinking it's Ferrara Pan Candy. Lemonheads Park at Wrigley Field. The Atomic Fireball Bullpen. The Jaw Busters Broadcast Booth. The Black Forest Gummies Ivy.


I can imagine McDonald's might be a big player. Hamburglar stolen bases, Ronald McDonald Woo Woo, Homeskillet breakfast home runs...

Really can't wait for the Trib/Zell to get the hell out of the picture. Having an owner that isn't at all culpable to the fan base (or the future of the team) isn't a good thing.

Here's a list of "major" corporations in the city and suburbs:

Obviously, some aren't large enough and others aren't doing well enough to buy naming rights. It's somewhat of a long shot, but I'm guessing Allstate.

Sam Zell = Mr. Potter from Its a Wonderful Life

Dark horse: Boeing. Trying to prove how much they love their new hometown. Kaplan also mentioned Walgreen's, but I couldn't tell whether he was letting the cat out of the bag or if the name just popped into his head because the WGN street-level studio looks out at a Walgreen's on Michigan Avenue.

Allstate might make sense, but they already have the naming rights to a stadium here in Chicago, Allstate Arena in Rosemont (used to be the Rosemont Horizon, and I still call it that).

I really wonder about the economics of stadium naming deals. It's hard to believe that putting $20MM/year into a stadium name is better marketing than putting the same $20MM into traditional advertising campaigns -- particularly with a stadium like Wrigley where purchasing the naming rights is likely to buy you more bad press than good.

I have to believe that it's a corporate pecker contest. They have money to burn and so they make themselves feel important by putting their name on big buildings.

Good point Chad! And they get the VIP treatment with skyboxes, tickets, meet & greet with players, etc. for them, their families, their employees and clients.

I'm guessing the deal will be to call it something like "Wrigley Field presented by Motorola"

Please let them try to name it Tootsie Roll Park...

It'd be more of a natural for them to sponsor the toilet stalls.

Better bet will be something like Viagra or Cialis.

Sounds like Dusty thinks it is solely the Cubs fault that Corey has been a bust....

Krane Kinney was on ESPN 1000

Can't promise that Wrigley Field will be part of new name if they sell name rights.

Zell appoved
-Z's contract
-Field fix up
-Fukudome contract

Cubs have hold up on two trades (one for you know who) both are being held up by odd circumstances (looking at you Angelo). He wouldn't name names obvisouly so don't know about the second trade.

Could the second trade be contingent on the "you know who" trade?

I agree 100% vorare. Sadly, it doesn't look like he is in any hurry though. They announced this last year on opening Day i think, and I was hoping it would be all done by this Opening Day, but now I am hoping it could be done by the end of the season. We already will be having a lame duck GM possibly making trades at the deadline, let's hope we get new ownership in by the end of the year, so we can have a set plan, personnel and management going into the offseason.

I thought Hendry has an option to extend himself one more year.

Aren't there pills for that?

Hendry did have an option that was possible based on completion of the Tribune sale, so his contract goes through 2009. That was reported by Bruce Levine during one of his AM 1000 radio reports.

"Hendry did have an option that was possible based on completion of the Tribune sale, so his contract goes through 2009. That was reported by Bruce Levine during one of his AM 1000 radio reports."

That is not what the Sun Times said a couple days ago.

Basically it says that the team would need to be sold, which it has not yet. So if it takes till after the season, Hendry's contract would expire and the option disappear. But I guess we can thank the lovely McFail for that doosy of a option. McFail is the gift that keeps on giving. You'd think giving him a gift extension on his way out would have been enough. I wonder what other little surprised there are. But all that being said, I would be pleasantly surprised if they do in fact not extend Hendry for 1 year if no new owner is set by year's end.

Good take on Hendry getting an extension.

I can't see Zell or the Trib letting him go if the new ownership is not in place by year's end, so it is very likely Teflon Jim will slide by for another year. Hurry the f*** up, Zell!!!

"but unless we have someone better to play SS I don't see what all this crying is going to get you."

We do, it is DeRosa, and I am not "crying". Not yet at least, but maybe another year of Theriot at SS will get me there...:)

The reply button is your friend...

Lets just go ahead and forget DeRosa can't play SS, and sucks at playiing it when he does now at his age.

What is it with Cubs fans and them latching onto a player who once played a position briefly and believing he can suddenly step into that position and play 162 games of baseball.

I still have flashbacks of when people swore up and down Jeff Kent should be signed for second base and then be told he is gonna play 3rd, cuz he briefly played it at sometime in his past.

Every year its someone new. This year its Manny and DeRosa. Seriously when does Fukudome for SS watch start?

Todd Helton in LF.

I read that Reds article and you got Jay Bruce believing he has going to get a legit chance to win an OF spot. And then you got Dusty all complaining how Corey was rushed.

So Jay Bruce at age 20, competition for the OF is over for you now that Corey and Hairston are on the team. So sorry, dont want to rush you, like Dusty said.

Votto, 24
Bailey, 21

LOL...Gonna be fun watching Dusty find excuses not to play them.

I think a package with Marquis would make a lot of sense for Roberts. Will the O’s give him a guarantee that he starts? “His value doesn't lie in the bullpen”

Jason Marquis

Recent comments

Subscribe to Recent comments
The first 600 characters of the last 16 comments, click "View" to see rest of comment.
  • probably saturday depending on what they do with hammel (assuming friday for ham).

    crunch 1 hour 55 min ago view
  • Lester is going to get one more start, right? It sure would be nice to see him get a shot at 20 wins.

    Charlie 2 hours 26 min ago view
  • Nicely done! I think in my 10-14 games I went .500 or a little over. Strangely, I went to the Cards games they mostly lost (incl Saturday) and the one SF game they lost, plus a couple Brewers games they lost, too. I should have gone to just Reds games. But still - saw mostly very good baseball on the North Side this year. Regardless of what happens come October - the Cubs are positioned for some good times in the next 3-5 years.

    The E-Man 3 hours 50 min ago view
  • Attaboy!

    billybucks 4 hours 43 min ago view
  • First Cub victory at home this year for me!
    Saw all four starters this year

    jacos 6 hours 7 min ago view
  • RIP Arnie. We could use a lot more like you -- a man who succeeded and failed on his own terms, a true original, and, finally, a remarkable example of graciousness towards others.

    billybucks 14 hours 2 min ago view
  • Cubs finish 33 over at home. I was, personally, one game over at 3-2, which was one of my better years in a while.

    I do hope that's the last time we see the Cardinals this year. A lot of power, which is dangerous, particularly in a short series, and they have really shut down KB all year.

    Oh, and Jon Lester? Damn!

    billybucks 14 hours 14 min ago view
  • Yes. Boating accident at 3AM. Very sad, but stupid. Young men do stupid things.

    billybucks 15 hours 10 min ago view
  • lester puts 2 on and is taken out at 96 pitches. oh well.

    edwards in.

    crunch 15 hours 54 min ago view
  • 2 out in the 7th, lester at 84 pitches, ross taken out for the standing O.

    it's possible contreras will catch lester for another inning+.

    crunch 16 hours 1 min ago view
  • What a weird day.  Jose Fernandez and Arnold Palmer, but then Scully and, on a much more modest level, Ross....

    Transmission 16 hours 34 min ago view
  • d.ross gets his 2nd standing O on the night (last home game of the season)...hits HR #10...curtain call. baseball.

    crunch 16 hours 37 min ago view
  • as a fan, he only "owes" us the game on the field and not getting in the way of others on his team being ready to play (imo).

    it's exponentially worse to his family and friends, but this dude most likely had 15+ years of play left and even though he just turned 24 a couple months ago he had already established himself as a top guy in the game.

    crunch 19 hours 58 min ago view
  • Carrie Muskat [email protected]

    Updated #Cubs probs vs Pirates: Mon, Hendricks vs Kuhl; Tue, Lackey vs Vogelsong; Wed, Arrieta vs Taillon; Thu, Zastryzny vs Nova

    crunch 20 hours 21 min ago view
  • I know what you're trying to say, Charlie, that none of us feels what his loved ones must be feeling.

    On the other hand, what makes a death like this tragic is precisely the loss, based on Fernandez's youth and brilliance, to the baseball world.

    So, for example, we can say that Princess Diana's death meant more, in aggregate, to millions of admirers who didn't know her personally than to her loved ones.

    VirginiaPhil 20 hours 22 min ago view
  • boston pitching snags a couple of mlb team records...

    "Over nine innings of play, Boston's staff struck out 11 straight Tampa Bay Rays hitters Sunday, breaking the major-league record for most consecutive strikeouts in a game.

    The previous record was held by former New York Mets right-hander Tom Seaver, who struck out 10 straight hitters in 1970.

    Not only that, but with a strikeout to end the ninth, sending the game into extras, Boston's staff also struck out an MLB-record 21 batters over nine innings."

    crunch 20 hours 46 min ago view