TCR Weekend Notes

After a nice little run where the Cubs took 6 of 9 versus the baseball bottom-feeders (Astros, Brewers & Mariners), the Cubs are back to playing the major league teams and have promptly dropped 3 of 4 including yet another loss to Fransisco Liriano this afternoon. 3 More months of this fun...

- The Cubs reportedly will sign 16-year odl OF Eloy Jimenez out of the Dominican Republic for a cool $2.8M plus a $250K college scholarship. I'm not sure if that one is official yet, but INF Gleybar Torres and his $1.7M deal is:

Those two were ranked one, two or three on most of the prospect lists, so some nice talent added to the system, even if it won't affect the major league team until 2020 or later. After all the trades a few days back, the Cubs international pool money went up to $5,520,300. But they've spent about $6.42M so far and once the deals become official, they won't be able to trade for anymore space. If nothing changes, the Cubs would easily surpass the max penalty (over 15% of their cap) and that would cost a 100% tax on the overage (a little less than a million so not that big a deal), but they also would not be allowed to sign anyone for over $250K next season in  the international market that is under age 23. Considering the Cubs will very likely have quite a bit of international cash again next year because of their current poor record and forthcoming fire sale, that seems a bit short-sighted by the acclaimed front office. But let's see how the cards fall before we rush to judgement. They still might be able to pull off a deal to avoid the stiff penalties (they need to add about $600K in space to keep the overage to 5% or less) or they just decided the players they signed this year were worth the penalthy. I'm sure they have a decent idea on who will be available next season and felt this was the year to go for it and these were the talents to spend on. They may also be confident in their ability to unearth some cheaper options next season, plus it would give them quite a trading chip of a lot of international pool money next season if they wanted to go that route.

- In the Matt Garza sweepstakes, Buster Olney was saying this morning that the Cubs made "progress" in their Matt Garza talkss and name drops the Dodgers, Blue Jays, Red Sox, Indians, Rangers and even the Orioles. Jayson Stark says the Cubs may wait until their asking price is met (which seems the prudent move since they can make him a qualifying offer). And that so far that asking price was and from the Orioles, a price the O's weren't willing to meet, thus settling on Feldman. That's not the most insprining package, but guess the Cubs shouldn't expect more for a 3-month rental...both are talented players, but hardly top of the heap talent either. Personally, I just hope the whole ordeal gets done soon before the shine wears off Garza's recent run or Cubbery hits. Give us Mike Olt and let's call it a day....


Daytona [email protected] Congrats @javy23baez on his promotion to @smokiesbaseball!

sweet...2014 AA/AAA seems like a nice pace...or if he excels in AA the rest of the way, 2014 AAA/MLB

Wanna bet he starts out 1-30?

After trading Roni Torreyes to Houston, the Cubs moved Arismendy Alcantara to 2B at Tennessee, opening up SS for Javier Baez.

BTW, Alcantara is a lock to get added to the Cubs 40-man roster post-2013. OF Jae-Hoon Ha and LHRP Zac Rosscup are the other two who are likely to get added, and LHSP Kyler Burke could get added to the 40 just to keep him from walking away as a minor league FA.

zac rosscup should hit AAA by 2016...i'm stoked. he needs a few more years of dominating AA, first.

I've always believed pitchers dominating at AA can skip AAA, and I think Rosscup falls into that category. Regardless of if or when he goes to AAA, I'd be disappointed if he didn't join the Cubs on Sept. 1 or after MILB playoffs if any. Why send him to the PCL for 3-7 weeks just to take lumps?

I read somewhere, I don't think it was AZ Phil so to me that means that it isn't necessarily correct, that pool money can't be recouped after you've gone past the limit. Again, tho, I don't think it was AZ who said that, so it's not definitive at all.

Submitted by Arizona Phil on Thu, 07/04/2013 - 12:13amPermalink. Once a club reaches or exceeds its International Signing Bonus Pool (and I mean the adjusted ISBP, which changes whenever a Signing Bonus Value is traded or acquired), it can no longer acquire Signing Bonus Values in trades. So even if a club is willing to pay a tax on going over its ISBP limit, it is important for a club to stay at least $1 under their current up-to-the-minute ISBP so that the club can continue to acquire SBVs in trades. I suspect that's why the Cubs are holding-up the Eloy Jimienez deal, so they can continue to acquire SBVs in trades and stay under their current ISBP. Once they reach their ISBP limit, there is no going back to undo it.

Thanks! We now have the definitive word!

The Cubs originally-assigned 2013-14 International Signing Bonus Pool (ISBP) was $4,557,200.

A club can add no more than 50% of its orginally-assigned ISBP (by trading for other clubs Signing Bonus Values), so the Cubs 2013-14 ISBP absolutely-positively cannot exceed $6,835,800. (NOTE: If a club acquires an SBV in a trade that causes the club's ISBP to increase to an amount that is more than 50% above the club's originally-assigned ISBP, the portion of the SBV that caused the club's ISBP to increase to an amount that is more than 50% above the club's originally-assigned ISBP is simply subtracted from the SBV).

A club can spend up to 5% above its ISBP (that would be $341,790 for the Cubs if they acquire an SBV that takes them to their maximum possible ISBP) before restrictions on signing bonuses for the following season's International Signing Period apply. So if the Cubs acquire the maximum possible SBV (taking their adjusted ISBP to an amount 50% above their originally-assigned ISBP) and then spend up to 5% above the adjusted ISBP, they would be able to spend an absolute maximum of $7,177,590 before restrictions on signing players in the next ISP would come into play. (A club that pays signing bonuses that exceed its ISBP by 5% or less in a given ISP must pay a 75% tax on the ISBP overage, but there are no restrictions on bonuses in the next ISP). 

So if the Cubs get to their maximum possible ISBP ($6,835,800) by acquiring additional SBV in trades (after the Feldman, Torreyes, and Marmol trades, they can add up to $1,315,500 in SBV via trades before reaching $6,835,800), and then spend 5% more than that to incur a 75% tax on the overage (but no restrictions on signing players in the next ISP), the tax-penalty would be $256,343

Therefore, spending $7,177,590 in signing bonuses during the 2013-14 ISP would cost the Cubs an additional $256,343 (the 75% tax penalty), but they would not have to worry about restrictions on bonuses they can give to players in the 2014-15 ISP.  

So think of $7,177,590 in 2013-14 international signing bonuses as the Cubs "magic number" to avoid signing restrictions in the next ISP, but to get there the Cubs would first have to acquire additional SBVs worth a combined $1,315,500 (or more). And to acquire the additional SBV, they would have to make sure they continue to keep the amount of 2013-14 bonuses paid below their current-adjusted ISBP until they hit $6,835,800, because once the aggregate amount of bonuses paid exceeds their adjusted ISBP, they can't trade for SBVs, even if they have not yet reached their maximum-possible ISBP. 

I suspect that is why the Eloy Jimenez signing is being delayed.

Thanks a lot, AZ. Wow, I can't see them being able to pick up $1mil+ in additional SBVs before they lock down the Jimenez signing. I'm fine with them signing that beast and taking the hit.

more details on signings, has a little less for Moreno and says Cubs would be 13.6% over.

penalty would be no signings over $500k and 100% tax.

Hi again everyone - long time, no talk to! Hope everyone is well!! As for this international signing business, we sure seem to be blowing our load this year. I'll admit that I'm not following it as close as I'd like, but is it because: a) this draft class is so much better than next year's class is projected to be b) we are working the system and stockpiling for 2018+ c) we are being shortsighted and possibly hamstringing ourselves for next year It is likely a combination of some of these factors and probably a lot more complicated then I'm making it, but I'm just looking for some insight by those of you who are following more closely than me. Thanks!

From what I read, it's A and B. Jimenez is also quite a specimen, from what I'm reading. At 16, he's 6-4 and 200 pounds already, and apparently a good fielder and natural hitter. Of course, at 16, there is that chance he'll grow to 6-11, and 201 pounds, and be converted into a mediocre pitcher, but it still seems like a nice roll of the dice.

2nd round pick Zastrzny (sp?) to Boise along with 10th round pick Godley. Rhee goes with them to continue his rehab. 3rd round pick Hannemann to disabled list along with Carlos Martinez.

Stephen Bruno is joining the Tommy John club.

soriano 2hr day...swank. 5hr in his last 8 games...12 on the season.

8 days ago I would have bet the farm on him being a Cub the rest of the season. Now, who knows.

fwiw... "FOX Sports' Ken Rosenthal reports that the Dodgers are in "serious talks" for Ricky Nolasco."

Baez up to AA, and he homers in his first at bat.


Guess it was a month ahead of schedule. Seems fast to me, but maybe they want to challenge him.


The Cubs have acquired IF-OF Nate Samson from Winnipeg (American Association), and he has been assigned to AA Tennessee. . 

Samson played in the Cubs organization for seven seasons after being selected in the 34th round of the 2006 draft. He received an overslot bonus to sign and steadily worked his way up through the system (serving as a "super-sub" utility guy) before leaving as a 6YFA after last season.

He signed a 2013 minor league contract with the Cincinnati Reds, but was released at the end of Spring Training. He then signed with Winnipeg.

Nolasco to Dodgers and $197K in international cap space for LHP Angel Sanchez, RHP Stephen Ames and RHP Josh Wall. Dodgers paying rest of Nolasco's deal.

A bunch of C and lower prospects...

Should we assume this was just a salary dump?

sure, for a team that didn't need least Loria gets a little richer. Marlins get nothing in essence.

The major league team's record not withstanding, I'm pretty happy with the Cub's ownership at this point.

There is no excuse for Loria still being a part of baseball. That said, he's won more championships that I've witnessed from the Cubs.

Gallardo goes 6 innings tonight 6 H 3 BB 4 ER 6 K against the Mets.

Albert Almora singled in the bottom of the fourth and appeared to injure himself while sliding into second base, trying to break up a double play. He left the game in the fifth.

Oh jeez. Straw man so far .... I hope he's okay.

Oh jeez is right. The good news is that Almora is not suffering from a leg injury. Johnson said Almora is dealing with a case of hemorrhoids.

Sliding with the roids has to suck very much.

Wasn't while sliding -- he never made it to second. Made it about 2/3 of the way then stopped and knelt down. It looked like a hammy at the time. Othe notes from last night's game: Rosario is not good. Absolutely no control. Almora's a cocky little sucker. It comes through in everything he does. I though Reggie Golden was supposed to approach batting the Cubs Way, but he goes up there hacking. Gets to 2 strikes, THEN he gets selective. Most impressive in his hitting approach: Jeimer Candelario. Not much to show for it, but he looked absolutely in control at the plate.

Candelario has intrigued me since AZ's initial reports on him from Mesa at various times. He seems off to a slow start: But if the link is correct, he's only 19, and his OBP tells me that the hitting approach you are describing is showing up in at least one stat. .324 OPB is not killing it by any means, but it sounds like he's not lost out there, either.

Travis Wood is the lone Cub All-Star.

Yasel Puig part of the final vote-in.

Sell high! Get prospects. Bring them up.

rizzo single, soriano single, both runners advancing to 2nd/3rd on an ill-advised pickoff attempt by r.martin, valbuena intentionally walked to load the bases...0 outs... navarro wins it with a sac fly...woo. m.guerrier goes 2ip 1h 0bb 0k for the win...p.strop contributes 1.1ip 0h 1bb 1k

I kinda like the stuff Strop has. I guess he's had control problems this year but lots of movement and kept the ball down.

Nice series win. Cubs improve to 11-19 in one-run games, 10 under .500 overall.

The Cubs are 29-23 when scoring more than three runs. They are 23-6 when they reach five runs in a game. But when Cubs pitchers give up four runs or more, they are 6-40.

One of the frustrating things has been that they've been in a lot of close games, and are hitting .231 with runners in scoring position. Cardinals are hitting about a hundred points better.

I'm sure you noticed, but the Cardinals have much more talent in probably 22 of 25 spots on their roster. And organizationally they are eons ahead. So it is no surprise that they can hit with RISP.


24th round pick - Catcher Tyler Alamo has signed. Haven't seen dollars yet. I believe he was expected to be an overslot.

wish k.bryant would go ahead and sign. thanks to the new draft format college juniors are already a level of fear, but it's not like he was drafted mid/late 1st round. sure, he could probably be the overall #1 pick next year, but that's a heck of a gamble for a few hundred K to $1m of loot.

I doubt we need to really worry. Team Borass has many minions who must read and re-read the contract, delete, strikeout, redelete, restrikeout, send to various levels of the Borass team for approval, re-read, reapprove, restrikeout, send the contract to legal, re-read, restrikeout, then add some clauses, then send back down to a lower level para legal to rewrite, then have it sent back up, then Boras himself will read it, find some issues, send to TheoCorp, whose legal team will evaluate the ... never mind, you get the point.

i'm not worried, really. i severely doubt they'll roll the dice when bryant is already due to get a $6.5m-ish bonus as it is. he could do better, but only marginally (and his production + health would have to hold). i'm just ready to have him in camp, broken into the system, and assigned. i didn't expect him to sign immediately, but i was hoping this would have gotten done before july rolled around. we'll find out next week what's up either way.

Yeah I totally agree. It is insanely risky to go back and risk injury and performance drops. In fact if he did go back I'd say that either he or boras would need to be evaluated for mental illness (unless the Cubs are low balling them knowing all of this. Do we know of an actual number the Cubs offered?)

if anything they gotta be bitching over a few hundred K at worst...or bryant really doesn't want to do "welcome to the Cubs, welcome to Arizona in the middle of the summer" until it's absolutely the deadline to sign.

I really think it's just that the contract is complicated. If I'm not mistaken Boras clients always take a long time to finalize things. I bet his contracts are a few inches thick. But yeah, I'd love to see him get started asap. One of the supposed benefits of a college kid is they are more refined and need less time in the minors. If anybody shouldn't be quibbling over a few hundred K, it's the Cubs, given the sorry state of the franchise. If they're quibbling over a few hundred K, they need to be drawn and quartered.

Cubs 2012 1st round draft pick Albert Almora (who is also represented by Scott Boras) held-out until the deadline last year, and then got every penny of what the Cubs had left in the their Bonus Pool (including 5% overage, which is subject to a tax but does not resuilt in the club losing a draft pick).

No reason to think the same thing won't happen with Kris Bryant this year. 

Exactly right. Might even be with the Cubs' blessing.

Mild surprise. Ken RosenthalVerified account‏@Ken_Rosenthal #Cubs getting minor-league pitcher from #Nationals for Scott Hairston. Will be announced in morning.

As long as he's breathing it's a good deal for the Cubs. Cool. [edit] Oh, Hairston has a 2 year contract? Never mind, breathing not a requirement.

Jon Heyman‏@JonHeymanCBS #cubs chip in small $ (less than 500 grand) toward hairston's '14 pay. #nats pay all in 2013. hairston deal was $5M/2 yrs Pitcher is from A-ball.

with Hairston gone...who gets the call up from Iowa? need Righty bat, OF: Junior Lake, c'mon down (up, east?) edit: Cubs Den/John Arguello notes Donnie Murphy was pulled from the I-Cubs game and might get the call up. Murphy at Iowa: .261/.343/.459/.802 with 10 HR

Who the hell is Donnie Murphy???? googles it... Reacts:

I don't for the life of me know how I could have forgotten that memorable game.

Haha quite true. However, Murphy's definitely seen the Cubs a few times and inflicted a little damage (like basically everyone who's played in the NL in the past 70 years).

If Donnie Murphy gets the call-up to replace Scott Hairston, here are the pertinent roster status details:

1. Murphy has accrued less than five years of MLB Service Time so he could be optioned to the minors, except he is out of minor league options.

2. Murphy has accrued more than three years of MLB Service Time AND he has been outrighted previously in his career, so he has the right to elect free-agency as an Article XX-D minor league player if he is outrighted. However, players signed to minor league contracts who are added to an MLB 40-man roster (and 25-man roster) during the season normally sign a 45-day waiver when they are called up where the player agrees (in advance) to not exercise his right to elect free-agency if he outrighted back to the minors within 45 days. (Rodrigo Lopez did this last aeason, and Brian Bogusevic and Blake Parker and possibly Ryan Sweeney may have done so this year). Players are not required to sign the waiver, but players without an "opt out" clause in their minor league contract usually do. 

3. If Murphy were to somehow remain on the Cubs MLB 40-man roster past this saason (which is very unlikely), he is not eligible to be an MLB Article XX-B free-agent until post-2015, although he would be eligible for salary arbitration post-2013 and post-2014. 

You're out of your element, Donnie!


17 cubs hits...8 were homers. ...too bad it was 17 hits in 99ab.

Jon Heyman‏@JonHeymanCBS Cubs acquire ivan pineyro in hairston deal

An added twist to the deal. Rosenthal says each team is sending a PTBNL to each other.

In case one or more PTBNL are part of the Hairston trade, here are the restrictions on a PTBNL: 

If a "Player to Be Named Later" (PTBNL) is part of a trade, the PTBNL cannot be on an MLB 25-man roster (MLB Active List) at any time starting when the trade is executed up until the PTBNL is announced. The PTBNL CAN be on an MLB DL or MLB 40-man roster (optional assignment), just ao the player is not on an MLB 25-man roster (limit expanded to 40 on September 1st) during the period of time between the trade and when the PTBNL is announced. 

Clubs have six months to agree on a PTBNL. Typically the two clubs agree on a list of players from which the club owed the PTBNL can choose. 

A cash payment (typically $50,000 for trades involving players on the 40-man roster) can be substituted for a PTBNL if no agreement can be reached within six months. The specific amount of cash that can be substituted for the PTBNL must be stated at the time of the trade. 

Also, if a traded player has potential performance bonuses in his contract (as Hairston does), the two clubs must agree at the time of the trade how much (or what percentage) of the performance bonus each club must pay. Typically the split it is based upon how much time that season the player spent with the club that traded him. In the case of Hairston, he spent about half of the 2013 season with the Cubs, so they are probably responsible for half of whatever performance bonus he may earn in 2013, but not responsible for whatever performance bonus he may earn in 2014.

From The South Atlantic League announced its All-Star teams today and six Hagerstown players, along with manager Tripp Keister and pitching coach Franklin Bravo, got the nod: RHP Dixon Anderson RHP Robert Benincasa RF Brandon Miller RHP Ivan Pineyro 2B Tony Renda C Pedro Severino

Stolen from MLBTR: Pineyro, 21, was promoted to High-A in mid-June after making the South Atlantic League All-Star team. In 15 starts overall this year, he has a 3.24 ERA, 8.3 K/9, 2.5 BB/9, and 0.58 HR/9 in 77 2/3 innings. Prior to the season, Baseball America ranked Pineyro 27th among Nationals prospects, noting that the Dominican held his own against older competition, and "his quick arm is intriguing." According to BA, Pineyro throws 90-94 with an average to plus changeup and a curveball that needs work.

Bring him up!

Baseball America Midseason Prospect Update: Top 50 Prospects 10. Baez 16. Almora 18. Soler

Nice job, Cubs. Between Murphy, Lake, and Ha, not to mention the lower-system guys, Hairston was completely expendable. They traded him immediately after he showed signs of life for the first time this season. And they got a guy who might have the stuff to help in a couple years. Well done.

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  • jdrnym 5 hours 52 min ago (view)

    AZPHIL, has there been official word as to whether the 26-man roster has been extended down to the minor league levels that previously had 25-man rosters? Can't really think of a reason why that shouldn't be the case...


  • Arizona Phil 10 hours 47 min ago (view)

    Another possibility for a "26th man" in 2020 would be a young pitcher selected in the Rule 5 Draft who has big league upside but who is clearly not yet "big league ready," or a pitcher who is out of minor league options who might not be quite MLB ready.


  • Cubster 12 hours 54 min ago (view)

    Just sign Rick Reuschel and lets move on


  • crunch 13 hours 36 min ago (view)

    "Buster Olney of ESPN reports that Scott Kazmir will throw for MLB teams this week.

    The 36-year-old Kazmir hasn't thrown in the majors since the 2016 season, but he recently told Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times that he that he hit 90.9 mph with his fastball during a bullpen session."

    someone put another bottle of left-in-the-car warm water under the cubs hot stove and let's get this one done!  woo!



  • crunch 1 day 4 hours ago (view)

    bryce harper ruined that bat dragging thing for everyone after his ejection years ago at the junior college world series.

    also, hurrah for baseball making it's return.


  • JustSayin' 1 day 4 hours ago (view)

    College ball started Saturday.  Umpire egos in D1 baseball are not that much smaller than in the pros, so of course there was a controversy.  In the late innings of a game in the weekend's biggest series (Michigan vs.


  • crunch 3 days 2 hours ago (view)

    the news is mostly based on a Baseball America article from the 11th (behind a paywall) the gist of it is rather legit rumor-wise, though it's still too far in the future to call it a 100% done deal.

    btw, the cubs have been strongly linked to pursuing christian hernandez for quite a while.  the BA writer that wrote the article about the cubs links has been following c.hernandez since he was a 14yo talent and is quite familiar with him.  that signing probably is in the bag.


  • Wrigley Rat 3 days 5 hours ago (view)

    I don't know much about this website, but they are speculating that the Cubs may sign two of the top International Free Agents available during this signing period: Does anyone know if this sounds legit?


  • Arizona Phil 4 days 9 hours ago (view)

    Minnie Minoso was playing in the Mexican League (as a DH) at age 47 and Julio Franco was playing in the Mexican League (as a DH) at age 49, so Mexican League teams clearly do not have a problem with signing older players. 

    And of course the ageless Satchel Paige was still working as a SP in AAA (with the Miami Marlins) into his early 50's (and prior to that he pitched in MLB as late as age 46).  


  • crunch 4 days 9 hours ago (view)

    b.colon has signed to a mexican league team.  woo old dudes.  he turns 47 in may...believed by some to be older.


  • Cubster 4 days 18 hours ago (view)

    Replacing someone like David DeJesus?


  • crunch 5 days 11 hours ago (view)

    mark grace returns to chicago as an analyst/on-air-talent for Marquee.

    he won't be part of the main game calling crew, but will be doing support content during games.


  • Eric S 5 days 14 hours ago (view)

    Increasing levels of smoke concerning a possible Arenado/KB trade

    Get Arenado to agree to push back his opt out a few years or so down the road and this could work out nicely for the Cubs


  • Arizona Phil 6 days 5 hours ago (view)

    Jason Kipnis (like Brandon Morrow) was a post-2019 Article XX-B MLB free-agent who signed a 2020 minor league contract, so he gets a $100K retention bonus and an automatic June 1st player opt-out if he is not released by 12 PM (Eastern) on the 5th day prior to MLB Opening Day or added to an MLB 40-man roster or MLB 60-day IL by 12 PM (Eastern) on MLB Opening Day. 


  • Arizona Phil 6 days 5 hours ago (view)

    The Cubs have signed post-2019 second-contract minor league FA catcher Jordan Procyshen to a 2020 minor league contract and he has been assigned to AA Tennessee.  


  • Dolorous Jon Lester 6 days 7 hours ago (view)

    Q could be subbed in for any of those too