Cubs @ Brewers: Series Thread (Games 103-105)

The Cubs head to Milwaukee to take on the third-place Brewers, who have been leap-frogged by the streaking Cardinals. As tight as the division, it feels like we are already very much in the stretch. They start with the season series tied 3-3. See game-by-game matchups below.


Game 103, Friday, July 26, 7:10pmCDT

CHC: RHP Kyle Hendricks (7-8, 3.41 ERA)

MIL: LHP Gio Gonzalez (2-1, 3.60 ERA)

Hendricks pitched seven innings and allowed two earned runs in a loss to the Padres. He deserved better. He took a loss to Milwaukee in April, allowing 4 earned runs in 4 innings. The Brewers have a group OPS of .620 against him in 162 at bats.

Gio Gonzalez missed all of June and the first half of July. He has made one start since returning, allowing three earned runs in four innings against Arizona. He earned a win against the Cubs in May on 5.2 innings pitched and two earned runs. Heyward and Rizzo have combined to go 10-64 against him with one double and 12 strikeouts.


Game 104, Saturday, July 27, 6:10pmCDT

CHC: LHP Jon Lester (9-6, 3.87 ERA)

MIL: RHP Chase Anderson (5-2, 3.90 ERA)

Lester allowed four earned runs in six innings against the Padres and escaped with no-decision. Ryan Bruan is 8-21 off of him and Lorenzo Cain is 9-25.

Anderson allowed two earned runs in 5.2 innings to the Reds last time out. He pitched three innings in relief against the Cubs in April and allowed a solo homerun. Kris Bryant is 7-23 off of him. Contreras is 7-13.


Game 105, Sunday, July 28, 1:10pmCDT

CHC: LHP Jose Quintana (8-7, 4.42 ERA)

MIL: RHP Zach Davies (8-3, 3.17 ERA)

Quintana last got a victory against the Padres despite allowing five earned runs in five innings pitched, allowing three homeruns in the process. Braun has a .901 OPS against him in 36 at bats.

Davies last allowed seven runs, six earned, in 4 innings against Cincinnati. It was his worst start of a strong 2019 so far. He's 1-0 against the Cubs this year, allowing three runs, one earned, in 12 innings. He should have to face the Cubs twice between this weekend and the series late this coming week. Maybe the exposure will help the lineup figure him out. Bryant has a 1.005 OPS against him in 41 at bats.

Comments

Cubs recall OF-INF Ian Happ from AAA Iowa (will be official tomorrow).

No corresponding roster move announced yet, but keep in mind Daniel Descalso does have minor league options left (he has never been optioned to the minors) and so he might agree to an Optional Assignment (like Tim Collins did earlier this season) since he gets paid the same whether he is on the Cubs MLB active roster or at Iowa, especially if the alternative is getting released and especially if the Cubs guarantee he will be recalled no later than September 1st (when MLB active rosters expand).  

Happ's season line is still uninspiring. But he's hit .333 and walked 9 times compared to 6 strikeouts in his last 10. 1.059 OPS in July with strikeouts down a few ticks compare to previous months. That's pleasant news to me! I'd about given up on him for this season.

Hopefully less of Almora batting leadoff or fifth in the lineup with this move too. 

ERIC S: It looked (to me) like the Cubs made a concerted effort over the past ten days or so to give Almora a chance to prove himself as the everyday CF, but he just couldn't do it. So they called-up Happ. 

👍

The fact that Rowan Wick was not optioned to Iowa on the off-day on Thursday (like when Randy Rosario was optioned to AAA on the off-day before Carl Edwards Jr was reinstated from the IL -- which saved the Cubs about $2,500 in salary, the difference between Rosario's daily MLB salary and his daily minor league split salary) would seem to indicate that whoever is being moved off the 25 to accomodate Happ is not Wick. (And that's also why Happ will not be recalled officially until Friday... that way, the Cubs save about $2,500 in salary -- the difference between Happ's MLB salary and his minor league splits salary -- by waiting to recall Happ until they actually have a game scheduled). 

If it isn't an unexpected IL stint for somebody, the best guess remains either Daniel Descalso, Tim Collins, or Brad Brach, and because each of them have Article XIX-A rights (each has accrued at least five years of MLB Service Time) the player would have to give his consent (in advance) before he can be sent to the minors by optional or outright assignment. Descalso and Collins have minor league options left so they could be optioned to the minors (presuming the player gives his consent), but Brach is out of options so Outright Assignment Waivers (which are irrevocable) would have to be secured before he can be sent outright to the minors (again, presuming he gives his consent).

And that's why players are sometimes Designated for Assignment even if their slot on the 40-man roster isn't needed for another player, because the player's slot on the 25-man roster is needed for another player, and if the player being replaced on the 25-man roster is out of minor league options, the player can only be sent outright to the minors (not optioned), and it takes two days to run a player through Outright Assignment Waivers (if they haven't previously been secured during the current waiver period).    

The fact that Collins gave his consent to be sent to the minors four times previously this season (he was optioned to Iowa in March and then was recalled in April, was optioned back to Iowa again a couple of weeks later and then was recalled in May, then was optioned back to Iowa a couple of days after being recalled and then was recalled again in June, then was sent outright to Iowa about a week after the recall, before having his contract selected last week) doesn't necessarily mean he will do it again. He might decide that enough is enough. Because Collins was outrighted previously in the current waiver period (waiver period commenced on the 31st day of the MLB regular season and runs through 4 PM Eastern on July 31st), the Outright Assignment Waivers that were secured when he was sent outright to Iowa in June are still good (or "in effect") if the Cubs wish to outright him to the minors instead of optioning him, but he would still have to give his consent before he can be sent to the minors. 

The fact is, Collins cannot be optioned or outrighted to the minors without his consent - AND - he must give his consent each time he's sent to the minors, so if he declines the assignment this time -- even though he gave his consent the previous four times -- the Cubs would either have to keep him on the 25 or release him, and if he is released, he gets 100% of his $850K salary as termination pay, offset by the pro-rated portion of the MLB minimum salary ($555K or about $3,000 per day) if he subsequently signs a 2019 MLB contract with another club after being released.

Note that Article XIX-A rights (player has accrued at least five years of MLB Service Time) are different than Article XX-D rights (player has accrued at least three years but less than five years of of MLB Service Time or player had "Super Two" status after the previous season and/or player has been outrighted previously in his career). Players with Article XIX-A rights (like Descalso, Collins, and Brach) must give their consent before they can be optioned or outrighted to the minors and if the player doesn't give his consent he must remain on the MLB 25-man roster or get released, while players with Article XX-D rights do not have to give their consent before they can be sent to the minors, but the player can elect free-ageny after being outrighted (or in the case of players with at least three years of MLB Service Time and/or players who have been outrighted to the minors previously in their career, defer free-agency until after the conclusion of the MLB regular season, unless the player is returned to the MLB 40-man roster prior to electing free-agency... players who have Article XX-D rights only because they have "Super Two" status cannot defer free-agency until after the conclusion of the MLB season, they must decide whether to elect free-agency immediately after being outrighted).     

And that might be why the corresponding Happ roster move has not yet been announced. The player (whether it be Descalso, Collins, or Brach) may be consulting with his agent and considering his options and the Cubs are awaiting the player's decision before making the announcement. 

As I mentioned here a few hours ago, because Tim Collins was sent outright to the minors earlier in the current waiver period it is not necessary for the Cubs to place him back on waivers again before he can be outrighted, so the reason he was Designated for Assignment is probably because Collins has not given his consent to be outrighted again (at least not yet). 

If Collins does not consent to the Outright Assignment, the Cubs will either have to trade him or release him within seven days (obviously less than seven days if it's a trade, since the trade deadline is next Wednesday). 

I read it here first, but the MSM is crediting Tommy Birch of the Des Moines Register. 

Something to keep in mind about placing a player on an MLB Injured List is that it requires a doctor's written certification (and an MLB 10-day IL stint must be re-certified by a doctor every ten days, although a 60-day IL stint does not), whereas a player on a minor league roster (including a player on the MLB 40-man roster who is on an Optional Assignment to the minors) can be placed on the minor league club's Injured List without a doctor's certification. The minor league club simply notifies its league office that the player is unable to render service ("arm fatigue" is a good reason for a pitcher and "back tightness" or "calf strain" are popular excuses for position players). And that's why a minor league player can be placed on what's called the "phantom IL" (formerly "phantom DL"), but a player on an MLB 25-man roster can't. 

The only issue with placing a minor league player on a minor league IL is that the player must consent to it. If he's not really hurt, he has to go along with it and not say anything. That's why it's usually a guy who has an eye on being a coach with that organization or who figures he will get released if he doesn't play along. Because if the minor league club places a player on the 7-day IL and then the player claims he's not really injured, the club can be fined and the player can be declared a free-agent. 

AZ Phil - Assuming Robel Garcia continues to get starts at 2nd, and with Russell’s demotion, is Bote the best option as a late inning defensive replacement for Robel at 2nd?  This is assuming KB is not injured and will play in the upcoming series with the Brewers. 

ERIC S: Bote or Descalso would probably play 2B if the Cubs are protecting a lead. I don't think Happ is any better at 2B than Garcia (they are both bat-first 2B), but Happ can at least play CF or LF passably whereas I'm not sure Garcia can even play LF. 

Robel definitely looks far more confident at 2nd than in LF in the brief time i‘ve seen him in the outfield.  I *guess* I trust Happ a little bit more in LF than Schwarber. Happ probably has better range — Schwarber the stronger, more accurate arm. 

Like Joe, I forgot about playing Descalso in the field! 

STL won today.

CHC and STL are tied for 1st.

PHIL: Do you believe that Brailin Marquez is rthe real deal? A TOR starter? What do you and the other scouts think his floor and ceiling are?

E-MAN: Brailyn Marquez is (in my opinion) the Cubs #1 pitching prospect.

Presuming he stays healthy, I would say his ceiling is Luis Castillo or Robbie Ray (if he remains a SP) or Felipe Vazquez or Amir Garrett (if he is eventually moved to the pen), and his floor would probably be Eduardo Rodriguez or Danny Duffy (SP) or Jake Diekman (RP), and it will all depend on how his command progresses as he moves up the pipeline.  

Marquez is the only Cubs minor league pitching prospect I would not trade.  

What timing: A 20-year-old in Class A dominates in his last start before the MLB trade deadline, both deepening his parent club's resolve to keep him & other teams' desire to acquire him.

Cubs just traded for Derek Holland of the Giants, a lefty) for cash. Tim Collins DFA

Cubs acquire LHP Derek Holland from SF for cash and LHRP Tim Collins has been Designated for Assignment to make room for Holland on the 40 (the Collins DFA also opens up a slot on the 25 for Ian Happ, with another move needed once Holland physically reports to the Cubs). Holland was Designated for Assignment by the Giants last Sunday.     

Holland is signed through 2020 (club option for 2020 with $500K buy-out), makes $6.5M base salary in both 2019 & 2020, with up to $2M in performance bonuses in 2020 based on GS ($500K each if 24 GS and 28 GS and $1M if 32 GS), and Giants are paying part of Holland's remaining 2019 salary (about $2.25M remains) and/or the post-2019 buy-out (TBD). 

Derek Holland essentially replaces Mike Montgomery (SP/RP swingman), except Holland has been death on LH-hitters after being moved to the pen.   

laaaaaaaame

i just wanted to post again to agree with myself in the well thought out opinion that this is lame.

Let's hope there are other moves before Weds.

Nah we’re good I’d say

zobrist expected to return and could start a minor league assignment this weekend according to the front office.

at least he's returning in time to see some regular reps in the minors to get ready.  if this was gonna happen, i was hoping it would happen before the AA/AAA season ended.

rizzo not wearing eye black looks so weird.

strop HBP the 1st pitch into a game with 2 on and 1 out.

c'mon dude.

hey, pedro stop gave up the lead.

also, a brilliant performance by cirque du cubbie nearly took out rizzo/heyward/garcia in 1 play.

Pedro is toast. He’s been so solid, barring the occasional implosion. But he’s either done, or is having one of those years RPs have.

Either way, he needs to spend most of August at a minimum either on the IL or pitching mop up innings.

What makes it look worse for Joe is what I touched on below. He got Wick up IMMEDIATELY. Wick is not currently a world beater by any means. But the point is Joe knew Pedto had nothing tonight. And he still did nothing to stop another god damned blown lead.

this performance was so bad we both misspelled his name.

i've enjoyed having him around on the cheap for so many years, but this year has been a downer.

I‘m totally with you. I’ve (mostly) enjoyed his time here and he seems like a great teammate. But 2019 is not his year.

I’m still weighing which spelling I prefer: Pedro Stop or Pedto 

Currently a push

Joe, after one pitch, finally seems to get smart and says to get Wick up. Proceeds to get EXTREMELY lucky that Aguilar bailed Strop out. Then inexplicably leaves Strop in to get victimized. AGAIN. By some dime a dozen nobody. Pedro, your time is up.

Joe, I think yours is too.

that loss stung.  cubs now in 2nd and MIL inches a bit closer.

Cubs pitching allowed NINE batters to get on without a hit.  Six walks, 3 HBP.  First Brewers run scored by a guy who walked (Ryan).  Second Brewers run scored by a guy who walked (Kintzler).  Third Brewers run scored by guy who got hit (Kintzler).  Brewers scored three runs on 4 total bases.  None of first four Cubs relievers pitched clean. Frustrating as fuck. 

Seems like the Cubs haven’t won a game started by the Professor since his return from the IL.  Too lazy to fact check - more of a gut check

 

you are correct...what's worse, he's had 3 great starts in a row for 2 no decisions and 1 loss.

I understand at 90 pitches that the professor only had one more inning left but given the state of affairs with the bullpen and the fact the cubs were ahead, why not let him pitch one more inning. That seems more valuable than a pinch hitter in a low leverage at bat.

Congratulations to Ryan Court on finally getting a major league shot with Seattle.

2 for 5 (single, double) with 3 RBI and 2K playing RF and 1st in his starting debut (1ab pinch hit appearance for an out last night).

good for him.

...and he gets the post-game interview gatorade bath.

welcome to the bigs!

Derek Holland has reported to Cubs and has been activated and Daniel Descalso to 10-day IL retro to 7/24 (sprained ankle).

tiny tim collins passed through waivers and reported to AAA with his pot of gold and magically delicious cereal.

Again, Outright Assignment Waivers were secured in June when Collins was sent outright to Iowa and (once secured) Outright Assignment Waivers are good for the balance of that waiver period (which ends on July 31st).

So it is possible that Collins took a day to decide whether to accept the outright assignment (he has Article XIX-A status so he has the right to decline a minor league assignment), but it wasn't because he was on waivers. And in fact he still could decide to elect free-agency (he has three days to decide).   

BTW, if Collins declines the outright assignment he gets 100% of his salary if he is released. An Article XIX-A player (accrued at least five years of MLB Service Time) like Collins is not faced with the same choice an Article XX-D player (accrued at least three years but less than five years of MLB Service Time and/or has been outrighted previously in his career) has to make (which is, either accept an outright assignment or else elect free-agency and have your contract terminated with no termination pay).

An Article XIX-A player who has been Designated for Assignment can just refuse a minor league assignment (optional or outright) and force the club to either trade him or release him (and no matter what he chooses, he gets 100% of his remaining salary as termination pay). That's why getting to five years of MLB Service Time is such a big deal. 

There is one other aspect of being an Article XIX-A player. With mutual consent (player & club), an Article XIX-A player (like Collins) can sign a waiver in which the player forfeits his Article XIX-A rights for 45 days, which allows the club to outright the player to the minors without the player having to give his consent. It's possible that Collins signed such a waiver at some point in the last 45 days (it's never announced publicly, so it can only be inferred), in which case the Cubs were not concerned that he might refuse an outright assignment, and since waivers were already secured and will remain in effect ("good") until 4 PM (Eastern) on 7/31, might as well outright him now before the current waiver period ends. (Only Article XIX-A players with little or no leverage would sign a 45 day waiver, but if it's offered in return for a call-up to MLB, the player might consider it to be a better alternative to being left to rot in AAA). 

just regurgitating a rotoworld blurb "The left-hander was designated for assignment on Friday, but passed through waivers unclaimed and will continue to function as organizational bullpen depth for the Cubs."

i defer to your knowlege over a random rotoworld poster, though.  easily.  they probably put as much work into making the blurb as i did re-posting a summary. 

CRUNCH: I understand. I just wanted to explain it again, because a lot people just assume that a player has to be placed on waivers before he can be outrighted, but that isn't always true (like if the player was outrighted previously in the waiver period that extends from the 31st day of the MLB regular season through July 31st, the waivers remain good for the balance of the waiver period). 

I think the rule is probably confusing because it isn't very often that a player gets outrighted twice in the same waiver period, so it doesn't come up very often.  

To make it even more confusing, waivers (once secured) remaining good for the balance of the waiver period only applies to waivers secured starting on the 31st day of the MLB regular season through August 31st. Waivers secured anytime beginning on September 1st through the 30th day of the MLB regular season are only good for seven days or until the conclusion of the waiver period (whichever comes first). 

yeah, totally.  i don't double check any stuff like this and the truth of the situation is appreciated.

it is so nice being able to watch a guy like baez in the field and at bat.

it's not picture perfect awesomeness, but he pulls off a few "career highlight" plays a month.

AZ Phil,

I noticed "never nervous" Ervis Marchan is having a good year with the AZL Cubs.  He, Pedro Martinez and Fabian Pertuz were very successful in the DSL last year.  What kind of player is Marchan?

VIDEOGRAPHER: Ervis Marchan is a high-contact / hard-contact hitter with a line-drive stroke but with limited defensive skills other than an above-average arm (he plays 1B-LF-RF, but he's really a DH). 

another pen meltdown.  swank.

using 4 pitchers to get through a 2 run 8th inning for a tie game.  that's not moneyballs.

Quite the race between Maldonado and Happ to see who records their first hit as a Cub this year.  Evidently, time is not of the essence.

omfg...

ugg.

bullpen meltdown, including kimbrel with a 2 HR crapfest.

STL lost, too, at least.

Craig Kimbrel has now allowed four HR in 10.2 IP, and given that he is an extreme fly ball pitcher in a 2019 HR-rich environment, that HR rate might continue. 

It seems like the 2019 uptick in HR has negatively impacted relievers (including closers) who are four-seam FB/slider pitchers who don't generate a lot of ground balls. The guys who have been the surprise lock-down closers in 2019 (Will Smith, Kirby Yates, and Shane Greene) are ground ball pitchers who throw strikes and don't walk people. That is, they do get strikeouts but they don't necessarily blow anybody away, but when they don't get a strikeout, they also don't issue a walk or surrender a HR. Walks + home runs are killers for a bullpen. 

We may be witnessing a change in what makes a reliable MLB closer or set-up man. Maybe the Brandon Kintzlers of the world will inherit the earth. 

Is it time to panic? 

check out this guy over here who didn't get the memo the cubs traded for martin maldonado and derek holland.

world series, baby!!!!!  yeah!!!!

Honestly, I would be ok with them being sellers and doing a soft reboot ala the Yankees cir 2016. They ain’t going nowhere. Even if they miraculously win the Division - Dodgers and Braves too tough this year anyway...

Totally agreed. There are definitely pieces other teams would want. We won’t be able to get a Torres type player like during the Yankees soft reboot but we’d at least be able to get some good prospects.

I am torn because I want to see them win but I also don’t want to see us dump out our best prospects in a year that I can’t possibly see us getting past the division series. Maybe since we have a lot of depth type prospects and not enough 40 man spots for them this offseason we can do some swaps with them.

But yeah, soft reboot sounds good.

The problem with the Cubs doing a "soft boot" (a la Yankees circa 2016) at the trade deadline is that they don't have an Aroldis Chapman or Andrew Miller to trade, and unless they are willing to trade Bryant, Rizzo, Baez, and/or Contreras, the type of prospects the Cubs would get back for Hamels (who has a limited "no trade") or Quintana or for any of their relievers or for Schwarber, Almora, Heyward, Bote, and/or Caratini would be the type of prospects the Cubs gave up to get Hamels, Chavez, Kintzler, and Murphy this time last year (meaning Ricky Tyler Thomas, Eddie Butler, Alexander Ovalles, Rollie Lacy, Jhon Romero, and Andruw Monasterio).      

The Cubs would probably be better off over-paying for a big-time bat (even if it's a rental like Nicholas Castellanos) and maybe a 2B-SS like Jonathan Villar and hope to get Hamels and Zobrist back soon and try and score enough runs and have the SP go deep enough into games where the bullpen doesn't have to protect a one or two-run lead in the late innings. That's clearly what's killing the Cubs right now. Even when they get a good outing from the SP and take a lead into the late innings, the bullpen just isn't good enough to reliably protect a one or two run lead. 

And then the Cubs can maybe look to re-make the roster in the off-season. 

PHIL: Its a good point. Cubs, as of today, are #3 in the NL for starting pitchers. The Reds just ahead of them w/2 more games played. 

It is not far-fetched to surmise that the Cubs would be 5-ish games ahead in the Division with a Top 3rd bullpen.

I would not put it past Theo to trade one of the "stars" for a reboot. We have both experienced the Nomar trade. 

E-MAN: I think Kris Bryant is probably the only one of the present Cubs core (Bryant, Rizzo, Baez, and Contreras) who gets traded in the next year or so, although I don't think it would happen until this coming off-season (at the earliest). Otherwise I suspect the Cubs will probably look to sign Baez, Contreras, and Rizzo to significant contract extensions post-2019 (when the payroll AAV comes down about $60M from where it is now). 

The thing with Bryant is that he is a Boras client, and the whole thing with the Boras Corporation is that if you sign with them you agree not to give your club a "hometown discount" and you don't sign a contract extension that delays free-agency (although Boras does not object to an extension that buys out arbitration years) and you don't necessarily go where your heart is. You agree in advance that you will become a free-agent ASAP and take the most money (the best offer), and the Boras Corporation promises to get you the best deal you can possibly get. That's because the Boras Corporation gets a cut of the contract, and the more money in the contract, the bigger the cut. It's ALL ABOUT THE MONEY. 

And a big part of the strategy to get the most money is to become a free-agent ASAP (at as young of an age as possible) and then go on the market and take the best offer, whatever and whoever and wherever it comes from, doesn't matter.

So Bryant is not going to sign a contract extension (other than maybe one that only buys out arbitratiion years) with the Cubs before he becomes a free-agent, and he's not going to give the Cubs a "hometown discount," and while after he becomes a free-agent he could re-sign with the Cubs, that would only happen if the Cubs offer is the best one (they would be just one of 30 MLB teams). 

So Bryant is a FA post-2021, and the closer it gets to that time the less the Cubs will get back in a trade, presuming they decide to trade him before he becomes a FA. Or the Cubs could just do with Bryant what the Washington Nationals did with Bryce Harper. Keep him until he hits free-agency, and then extend him a Qualifying Offer (which he will decline) and get a 2022 draft pick back as compensation after he signs someplace else.  

boras/bryant also probably very freshly remember that service time screw-over from a few years ago.

very legal and very cool, but it got low-key ugly for a minute.

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Sadly, I found Bullpen Shitshow 2 dull and derivative and breaking no new ground from the recent Original Bullpen Shitshow.  In an oeuvre crying out for a spark of originality we find the same cast and director covering formerly well-trod ground and repeating old, banal tropes.   

Note to self.  Don't compose comments in Word and then cut and paste into TCR.

I thought it was part ot the gag. 

I applaud the effort!

maddon umm...not trusting Q.

I was for Joe pulling Q after AB to Arcia.  Guy's got a 7-0 lead and he walks the leadoff hitter who's batting .258 and follows it up after the single with a walk to a guy hitting .221.  If Q doesn't have the control or the backbone or the smarts to understand what needs to be done then have a seat and give somebody else a try.  Maybe Joe was ready to pull Q when I was and didn't have anybody warmed up.

Also a sign of how important Joe saw the game as being.  At the start of the series, Vegas would have figured the home team to win 2 out of 3.  Standings show exactly that. Ugliness and bufoonery aside.

Q earned his early exit...stings with 4.2ip and gas left in the tank.

Thanks Kyle Ryan

Can I have Things I never thought I’d need to say for $400, Alex?

6 hits, 4 walks, 10 runs.

that's moneyballs as hell.

cubs win!  STL down by 4 with 2 innings left to tie it or win.

could end up being a great day.

And (as expected) Marcus Stroman has been traded by the Toronto Blue Jays to the New York... 

METS???!!!???!!!???!! 

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  • Arizona Phil 1 hour 50 min ago (view)

    CUBSTER: Manuel Rodriguez was one of about two dozen players signed by the Cubs out of Mexico 2015-17 and he was one of the most-advanced (he spent three seasons in the Mexican League before signing with the Cubs). 

     

  • Arizona Phil 2 hours 29 min ago (view)

    KKvG: The Cubs are doing their Strength & Conditioning Camp October-Thanksgiving and will have Winter Instructs in January. 

     

  • KingKongvsGodzilla 2 hours 49 min ago (view)

    Hellooooo AZPhil,

    Cool post, thanks. To go completely off topic - are Fall instructs happening this year? Did they already happen? 

     

  • Cubster 3 hours 24 sec ago (view)

    Grandal leaves Brewers for WSox, 4/73 for a 31 yr old switch hitting catcher that hit .246 with decent on base and power.

     

  • crunch 3 hours 53 min ago (view)

    mekkes plays out like d.maples, but mekkes doesn't throw as hard, mostly just throws his fastball, and it has great deception.  both of them have no predictable command and control.

    given that mekkes is only expected to be a pen arm at best anyway, someone might very well snag him even if they end up sending him back before the season.

    if we still were in an era where you could have "specialist" relievers rather than this new era of innings-guys, he would probably be on the cubs roster given that righties are generally lost against him.

     

  • cubbies.4ever 1 day 1 hour ago (view)

    Why no Dakota Meekes?  Somebody is gonna take him.

     

  • Cubster 1 day 1 hour ago (view)

    Per S Sharma: "Cubs have added C Miguel Amaya, RHP Tyson Miller, RHP Manuel Rodriguez and INF Zack Short to the 40-man roster, which now stands at 36."

    ...Manny Rodriguez must be a bit of a surprise.

     

  • erich081 1 day 8 hours ago (view)

    Interesting, thanks AZ Phil.

     

  • Arizona Phil 1 day 9 hours ago (view)

    First.Pitch.120: Without citing the source, I can say that other than Miguel Amaya, no Cub eligible for selection in the 2019 Rule 5 Draft is more-likely to be selected (if left unprotected) than P. J. Higgins, and if Higgins is selected, the Cubs will almost certainly not get him back. 

     

  • First.Pitch.120 1 day 12 hours ago (view)

    AZ PHIL:  can you tell us a bit more about the "likely" ranking for PJ Higgins? I haven't had a chance to see him IRL. His stat sheet looks ok but not necessarily above some others. Is it a case of the "useful AAA catcher who can also do other things while not destroying you with the bat"?

     

  • JustSayin' 5 days 9 hours ago (view)

     I hear you but welcome to the world of Theo.  The team is always a step or two away from the World Series in his mind, whether that is true or not.  Therefore, the thing to do on the margin is to trade top prospects or younger guys on the roster for that missing puzzle piece, not build for the future.  I had a front-row seat for this as a Red Sox fan.  If Pedro Martinez doesn't insist the Red Sox sign David Ortiz for table scraps and Chris Bryant isn't the no-brainer second pick in the draft, we'd all be wondering what happened to that Theo guy who was in the Red S

     

  • Cubster 5 days 10 hours ago (view)

    Shogo Akiyama is a lefty bat, career BA at.301 w/ Seibu Lions.  Recent OBPs: .419, .385, .398, .403 and .392. HR 20-15 in last 3 seasons Stolen bases, 12 in 2019, 18 in best season (2016). Defense supposedly plus-plus, 7-10 assists (10 in 2016). Clearly a leadoff hitter.

     

  • crunch 6 days 3 hours ago (view)

    christian yelich committed internet homicide on yu darvish...

    https://twitter.com/ChristianYelich/status/1195462...

     

  • Charlie 6 days 7 hours ago (view)

    Little in the offseason could make me happier than the Cubs finding ways to retain the good MLB players who came up with them while remaining competitive. This Javy extension talk makes me much happier as a fan than the Bryant and Contreras trade talk.

     

  • crunch 6 days 8 hours ago (view)

    "Javy Baez. The two-time All-Star shortstop and 2018 MVP runner-up already has begun negotiations on a potential long-term extension with the Cubs, according to sources."

    also, some talk of being linked to shogo akiyama (CF, Japan, 32yo in April)

    https://chicago.suntimes.com/cubs/2019/11/15/20966...

     

  • crunch 1 week 4 hours ago (view)

    j.odorizzi accepted his qualifying offer (17.8m) from MIN...so did j.abreu (CWS)....everyone else is gonna play the FA market.

    w.smith (SF) immediately signed with the braves for 3/39 (13m team option/1m buyout on the backend).  braves lose a 2nd round pick...which they'll probably get back when someone signs j.donaldson.