39 players on RESERVE LIST (one slot is open), plus three players on 60-DAY DL
* bats or throws left
# bats both
* Felix Doubront
* Eric Jokisch
* Zac Rosscup
* Tsuyoshi Wada
* Travis Wood
* Wesley Wright
* John Baker
* Rafael Lopez
* Anthony Rizzo
* Luis Valbuena
* Logan Watkins
# Arismendy Alcantara
* Chris Coghlan
* Ryan Kalish
60-DAY DL: 3
James McDonald, P
Justin Ruggiano, OF
* Ryan Sweeney, OF
2015 Draft Pick Order
For failing to sign top overall pick Brady Aiken, the Houston Astros will get the 2nd pick in 2015 draft as well their their regular pick. The teams with the 10 worst records (top 11 picks) have their first round pick protected if they signed a qualified free agent this offseason.
Back in April, I put up some polls for our readers to rank the position players and number one pitchers in the division. I originally intended to get them up before the season started so any hot starts wouldn't influence the results. I failed miserably at that and the poll results showed that (Derrek Lee second?). Nonetheless, let's revisit the fun.
I had to take a little break to bash Brenneman yesterday, but NL Central Smackdown is back. I was going to just try and cover all the pitching in one post and have you guys vote on the pitching staffs as a whole. But who really want to decide between Brandon Backe vs Braden Looper. On the other hand, the crown for the best staff ace is worthy of discussion.
Before we examine left field, I remind you to check out and vote on center field and right from this weekend if you missed it. As for the left fielders, I think it's an intriguing group and something that should really test the "homer" vote that's been going around
in the previous installments. I think Soriano is as good as they get
out there in the division, but he seems to be quickly falling out of
fans' good graces as of late.
Before we head to the outfield, we take on the field generals. A difficult position to evaluate with the numbers just because there's just no great way to numerically measure a catcher's defense, leadership and ability to work with his pitching staff...but we'll do our best. I did want to note, I'll keep going with these through the weekend just so we can finish this up by early next week. If you take the weekends off from TCR, be sure to check back Monday and vote on the polls you missed.
We march on around the diamond. Today it's the double play partner of yesterday's vote. The Cubs so far have the 2nd best first basemen and second basemen in the division. Can Ryan Theriot keep the streak going? Answer - no!
I started off with the first basemen yesterday and I'll leave the poll up until I get through all the positions. If you need a primer on all this, be sure to check out that first post as well on the first basemen.
Today though we move to the second basemen. While Hendry tries to win by sheer numbers, it's about quality, not quantity. Your contestants after the jump....
I was going to try and get this up before the season started, but that clearly didn't happen for a variety of reasons. But that's no excuse to let the work go to waste. Basically I thought it would be fun to go through each position player in the division and the starting pitchers and see how we rank them. Who’s the best now? Who will be the best over the next 3 years? I'll be using Baseball Prospectus's WARP-3 numbers for the most part, which includes both offense and defense and most importantly for this exercise, projections for the next three years. Once we get through the eight positions and the starting pitchers, I'll finish it off with a Bill Simmons inspired (ripped off) trade value chart.
Here are the ground rules. We're trying to figure out who you'd rather have on your team. Do your best to take your Cubs bias out of the equation if possible (that shouldn't be hard for some of you). But we're also trying to figure out who has the best players on the their team right now, so I'm going to use the players projected to get the most playing time this year. Sure, Jay Bruce will eventually take over center field duties in Cincinnati, but who knows when. The chart after the jump includes their 3-year WARP-3 averages (2005-2007) and their projected 2008-2010 averages.The final column, appropriately labeled "Rob's Rankings", are simply how I ranked them before looking at any stats. For the most part I was pretty close to what the numbers bear out. I should also note that I did my rankings before the season started.
We'll start off with the toughest and most talented position, the first basemen. Your gladiators after the jump....
The first 600 characters of the last 16 comments, click "View" to see rest of comment.
"We're going to compete while developing young talent."
thank gawd...been waiting to hear this for years.
i'm not expecting $40m of free agents to flood in or anything like that, but some investment in talent that's expected to stick around past the trade deadline would be nice...something to help fans forget ejax anyway...
One thing the Cubs have in their favor is Theo. I have a hunch his reputation is pretty good among players. I can't say I have evidence to back it up, it's just a gut feeling. Another thing going for them is who wouldn't want to be part of the team that beats the curse. Naturally, there are guys who barely know much about it, but overall I gotta think that's pretty powerful stuff. Last I saw Houston was number 1 in minor league rankings, so they're doing something right, too.
BP's Monday morning 10 pack, reviews ten prospects including Cubs...
Gleyber Torres, SS, Cubs (Short-season Boise)
In 2013 the Cubs were aggressive in the international free agent market as they completely blew out their pool money to acquire their targets. Torres and Eloy Jimenez were the two headliners from that class, with Torres commanding a $1.7 million bonus. He is a shortstop at present but, at 17, he’s still a raw product at the position. I think he has the athleticism to remain there but he will need to take to further coaching and instruction to stick.
Shields v Lester is an awesome way to kick off the playoffs!
Everyone knows that tonight's game is for rights to advance to the ALDS, but also know that the losing starter is going to have to wait until Day 2 of the Cubs' 2015 season to pitch, giving Opening Day rights to tonight's winner.
well lots of people are stupid, who the fuck cares what they think?
Rich people know how to stay rich, I'm sure Crane wants the money in his pocket instead of someone's else's, it's what rich people do. They got screwed over on a TV deal, I'm guessing that's the big sticking point and where the 100s of millions is coming from.
Astros had nearly the same plan as the Cubs and our year ahead, they're doing just fine.
Turner has nice stuff but eventually potential has to become something more than that. I can't imagine they'll be standing pat on the rotation. I wouldn't be shocked to see a move for Lester as much as I loathe the idea of free agent TOR contracts. It'll be interesting, also to see what they do with Jackson. I don't think they're quite ready to eat the contract. Reading between the lines, it sounds like they're going to see what he does in the off season to try to address his woes. I myself do not hold out any hope on that front, but I'm not the one whose wallet is getting emptied.