Coffee Shop Encounter with Jim Hendry

You may have noticed the The Sun-Times report that Jim Hendry was in Los Angeles and had dinner with free agent Kaz Matsui and his people last night. L.A. happens to be my neck of the woods and in one of those once-in-a-lifetime moments, I happened to run into Hendry while getting my morning coffee at the Coffee Bean on Pico/Smithwood in Beverly Hills. I couldn't resist striking up a conversation... ------- (Busy coffee shop, about 6 people in line waiting to order. I stroll up and notice a older, Caucasian gentleman on his cell phone) Hendry: I know Miguel Cabrera is good, but he's a righty, we need lefties. I think Kaz and Jenkins are the much better options, Randy. (Hangs up phone) Rob: Pardon me, are you Jim Hendry? Hendry: (Surprised) Yeah, didn't think people would recognize me out here. Rob: Well I'm a huge Cubs fans, how'd your meeting with Kaz go last night. Hendry: How'd you know that? Rob: It was in the papers this morning and I came across it on this fan site I read, The Cub Reporter. Hendry: The Cub Reporter? No way. I read that site all the time, that Arizona Phil has given me a lot of good ideas. Rob: Oh yeah, he's great, I like that Rob G. character too. Hendry: Yeah, I think he's kind of a moron. (awkawrd pause, I stare at the floor and scratch the back of my neck) Rob: Um yeah, I guess so, he's nothing special... Hendry: And if I ever get my hands on that ass who keeps making donut jokes about me, I'll freaking kill him. (Hendry's turn to order comes up) Hendry: I'll have a large extreme ice blended mocha, extra whip cream, two old-fashioned chocolate donuts and a scone. Rob: So back to your meeting, how'd it go with Kaz? He probably wants to start somewhere and you guys are thinking more of a utility role, right? Hendry: No, we're pretty sure we'll find him consistent playing time for him, our scouts think he brings the right mixture of speed and versatility. Rob: But he's not good... Hendry: Excuse me? Rob: I mean, yeah, he's..he's versatile, but that doesn't mean he's, you know, good. It, it just means he's versatile, which is nice and all, but, you know Jose Macias was versatile, but he wasn't good. For example...if you have a moment? (Hendry nods head while keeping a nervous eye out for his drink) Rob: Like, Miguel Tejada, for example, is good, he can hit, but he can really only play shortstop and maybe third base, but he's actually, you know, good as compared to just versatile. And you know McPhail was a friend of yours, I'm sure you guys could work something out. Hendry: Well our scouts really liked what they saw in Kaz and you know he's lefty and fast and can play a few positions and fills a role we need. And I'm a little pissed at Andy over that Trachsel trade. Rob: Oh really, why so? Hendry: He knows I have a weakness for good scotch and he sends over a bottle of his finest and by the end of the night he talked me into sending Moore/Cherry and that conditional pick over for him. Thank god Randy was there as I was ready to add Pie in as well if they added Corey Patterson. Rob: Drunk GM'ing, never a good idea. Hendry: (Laughs) Tell me about...some Crown Royal and I thought Juan Pierre was a good player. Rob: (Awkard smile on my part) But back to Kaz, he's just not good. He only batted like 249 away from Coors last year with a 300 on-base percentage. Hendry:(Growing agitated) Well stats can be interpreted in a lot of different ways. I know our scouts really like him. Rob: There's nothing really to interpret, 250 with a 300 OBP is just not very good, no matter how you look at it. He's plain and simply not very good BUT I guess he's versatile...great. That should put us over the top. Hendry: If he doesn't hit like he did last year, we're certain that he can play a few infield spots for us and be a valuable guy off the bench. Rob: Well maybe, but if you're going to give him a multi-year, multi-million dollar offer he's probably thinking he'll be starting most of the time and they'll be expectations on Lou's part to play him even if he's struggling, like he'll inevitably do because he's not very good. Not to mention.... (Hendry gets his coffee drink , can't leave fast enough but politely lets me finish my rant) Rob: you're tying up payroll on a guy who' best, a marginal upgrade to your current shortstop and certainly a downgrade to your current second basemen and who should be a utiltyman off the bench, except you're probably going to pay him like a starter when you could easily fill his role with guys from the minors or cheap vets on a one year deal. Hendry: (Polite laugh, ready to leave) You certainly have some interesting ideas, a lot like that Rob G. from The Cub Reporter that I can't stand, but I'm confident we're making the right moves and we'll bring the fans the championship they wanted. I've got to run though, some more meetings. Rob: No problem, thanks for chatting with me and good luck this offseason. Who are you meeting with if you don't mind me asking? Hendry: (walking out the door) I got a meeting with Neifi's people, we really like his versatility, speed and defense and then David Ecsktein and Jose Valentin. Got to run, go Cubs!!! Rob: (Slaps forehead with open palm) Yeah later! (Under breath). Don't let the door hit you in the ass on the way out of Wrigley when Trib finally sells the team. ---- Enjoy Thanksgiving everyone!!!


I can't believe the let you in on all that information. You sure you haven't embellished a bit?

...but what's a coffe shop?

a clue...

You mean it wasn't a Dunkin Donuts?!?!? LOL!!!!!!1111111!!!1!1

brews/kendall done.

no Dunkin Donuts out here.... Felix Pie hitting 210 with a 602 OPS in the DWL through 62 AB's now, 14 K's

btw...i know its a humor piece but you lose your point saying tejada "really only play shortstop". that's like saying mike piazza can "really only play catcher". they both own the right gloves, but they probably shouldnt be using them. o's missed the boat 2 years ago when they should have either traded him or moved him to 3rd...did they REALLY need melvin mora? sad thing is the O's SS options beyond tejada are worse than the cubs options for years. seems the angels are hot after tejada for 3rd, but that whole cabrerra thing might be getting in the way. the "loser" of the cabrerra chase could end up with him.

yeah Piazza really could only play catcher and the Mets and Padres kept going to the playoffs, what's your point?

my point is tejada is a shitty SS.

and Piazza was a shitty catcher.. teams still won and their superior bats offset their bad defense. This isn't hard....

Kendall officially signs with Brewers. Can you say, “hello, sandwich round pick”…I knew you could. Source, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel

well, i dont think tejada or piazza were making/breaking teams even if their bats held up. that said, tejada's bat and wrist issues the past 2 years led him to turn in a performance of 38 xbh last season. honestly, i expect that improve if his wrists are okay. he came back after his injury last year on a HR torrent in august before his power once again disappeared in sept. he wasnt a slick SS in OAK and the past 2 seasons, last year especially, was pretty bad. for a guy who's not been bit by chronic leg injuries he's slowed so much.

Great job, Rob. The Cubs definitely do not need more players who are not good. Not a difficult concept to grasp.

fwiw...i dont mind if tejada comes aboard, but i honestly believe the 13m or so per year he's owed could be better applied in RF. dont think he'll come over, though, cuz there's little place to move him if he fails at SS. lotta teams are looking at him for 3rd.

That's some good stuff!

Cubs gonna get Milwaukee's 1st rounder as long as they don't sign a Type A free Agent. Should be somewhere around 16th overall. Along with the 19th overall the cubs have. That should lead to 2 solid prospects comming into next year.

I happened to run into Hendry while getting my morning coffee at the Coffee Bean Man... I miss Coffee Bean. That is some damn good coffee. And good work Rob.

Keeping my fingers crossed for this in the comming weeks. Tejada trade for Marshall, Epatt, Cedeno package Andruw Jones for 1 year 13-15 mil Happy Thanksgiving Yall!!!

"Cubs gonna get Milwaukee’s 1st rounder as long as they don’t sign a Type A free Agent. Should be somewhere around 16th overall. Along with the 19th overall the cubs have. That should lead to 2 solid prospects comming into next year." __________________________________________ They changed the draft pick compensation in the last CBA. A type B free agent only yields a 1st-2ndround sandwich round pick now.

Cubs gonna get Milwaukee’s 1st rounder as long as they don’t sign a Type A free Agent. Should be somewhere around 16th overall. Along with the 19th overall the cubs have. That should lead to 2 solid prospects comming into next year. Um no aaron, we just get a sandwich pick between the first and second rounds. They switched the rules with the new CBA. Type B free agents no longer cost the signing team a pick.

No Tejada! He can not field and without the help of Vitamin B12 or whatever the hell hell he was sharing with that damn flander he cant hit either.

mmmmm, sandwich...

The Coffee Bean. Where the movers and shakers meet. Writers write screenplays. Actressesses meet producers. GM's meet bloggers. How many sugar packets did he use?

How many sugar packets did he use? He didn't - he just crumbled up a donut into his coffee.

I'll take a SS who had an 800 OPS in a bad year...

no sugar...said it was too fattening as he stuffed the donut in his mouth.

Kendall deal is one yr with an option here is a Fox link:

"no sugar…said it was too fattening as he stuffed the donut in his mouth." LOL We are really mean. Probably should stop now (chuckles with head nodding "no")...

It is a good day when our biggest rival from a year ago signs a backstop that could not throw out Daryl Ward on a good day. Bliss. All is well.

Fuku 3/30? From Mets Blog, The Buzz: …the buzz around baseball suggests that Japanese free-agent OF Kosuke Fukudome is seeking at least a three-year, $30 million contract to switch from his home country to Major League Baseball…

I got to be the only one who thinks the Brewers/Kendall is a decent move for them. They already have enough pop in their lineup and adds yet another guy who'll take some pitches and get on-base. Sheets, Gallardo at the top of the rotaion Suppan, Capuano, Bush, Villanueva, Parra

I'm guessing either Peets Coffee or Yum Yum Doughnuts. Was he on his way to Fatburger?

3/30? make it 3/33 Hendry and celebrate with some saki bombs...

"adds yet another guy who’ll take some pitches and get on-base" And a catcher that Aram can steal on.

mentioned something about In & Out Burger actually and animal-style fries. Peet's Coffee is crap... Yum-Yum is alright, no Dunkin Donuts though.

I get Peets every time I'm in Santa Monica. Never had fatburger, but I do love In-N-Out burgers.

"Peet’s Coffee is crap…" Geez Rob. That is pretty harsh. Did you have a bad experience there? Prolonged wait for a latte?

steal all day, how much did it hurt the Cubs last year?

it's just not good, but I'm not a big Starbucks fan either. The Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf any day...

pie/fuld/infante...scarey given pie's winter...a little less scarey given fuld's winter... makes me want matsui or some other middle IF even more so theriot and/or cedeno could see some CF time...probably theriot cuz he's been primed. guess epat is in the mix, too... rowland/a.jones? doubt it, but i guess it depends on what happens in RF, maybe.

Are there still Winchell's out there?

yeah, still got Winchell's...

Fuku 3/30, Schmidt 3/44? God.

'Cause my friend Jim was asking.... is this old? Cubs signed RHP Cory Bailey, RHP Mike Smith, C J.D. Closser, C Danny Fatheree, SS Andres Blanco, OF Andres Torres Closser was a prospect once upon a time I believe...

heh... jd closser...he had promise at one point. andres blanco is a hell of a fielder...that's about where that ends.

yeah, closser was supposed to be "the" guy in colorado after c.johnson left. came over from arz. for mike "you're not that scarey" myers.

I think the Theriot in CF experiment came and went from spring training in 2007. As I recall LouPa banished him from the outfield since leaving Mesa based on how he looked out there which was pretty tenative.

Why is it, ROB, that Steve Carrell and Hillary Swank go to In and Out Burger Drive thru, post Oscar award ceremony? I mean, they're o.k., but I'd take Superdog 100X over.

Actually, for those of you who know - In and Out Burgers are very similar to Redamak's in New Buffalo, MI

lol, nice...

J.D. Closser ain't got shit on Koyie Hill. Closser don't make the ball go faster.

Apple Pan, baby!

hmmm....I've heard Closer knows how to make a pitcher's changeup slower

Cory Baily did pretty well last year at Iowa 2.86 ERA in 91 innings. Career-wise he has a 3.96 ERA in over 200 major league innings, but last big league appearance was 2002 with KC.

Linebrink to the WSux for 19/4 according to Levine. He is also saying he is hearing unconfirmed rumors that LAD has offered 102/6 for Hunter.

Let's face it, our first priority is to add a #5 hitter. The way I see it, here are our options: 1. Tejada. I'm sure they would want Cedeno and Murton and a pitcher, I think the deal is realistic. If we do get Tejada, we'll still need a rightfielder. I am intrigued about Ryan Freel's availability since now we'd looking at someone who could hit 7th and play good defense... 2. If we don't get Tejada, I think the best available 5 hitters that play right are JD Drew, Nick Swisher or Luke Scott. The Astros would want a starter+a second baseman (Marshall + Fontenot) The Bosox would want a reliever ( they would ask for Howry but we'd offer Dempster+Cedeno+Jake Fox The A's would want a package-Epat, Kevin Hart and possibly Billy Petrick. I'm operating under the assumption that Sam Fuld and/or Epat will get an opportunity to start in center. If we sign Jones, we keep Murton and Fuld and take our chances. I really don't think we should have traded Jones until we had the 5 spot filled. It seems to me we could have made a deal like that in spring training...

Jenkins??? Is he thinking about Geoff Jenkins? .255 average Jenkins?? Didn't we have a similar player and traded him to Detroit? We need to upgrade our outfield. We also need to layoff Kaz and quit signing utility infielders. Infante, Theriot, Fontenot, Cedeno, and DeRosa...our infielder looks like our outfield last year...crowded and questionable.

carmenfanzone - if JD Drew is our "best option" I would rather take our chances with the young guys. JD Drew, .270 with 11HRs, at $15 million dollar per year...way too much too spend on a guy who is constantly hurt. Overpaid and overrated. Let's also hope his little brother doesn't haunt our pitching staff in '08

I know what you mean about his health DJH. I'm also aware of the questionable attitude. I'm convinced if he was great, they wouldn't be listening to offers for him. My thought, however, is that nobody is going to trade us anyone better. His career on base % is close to .400. If he gives you a year like he did Atlanta, he's a star. If he plays 140 games, and hits 20 homers with 30 doubles, plays a good rightfield and gets on base, he's an upgrade. I haven't looked at the combined stats of our rightfield last year but defense alone would be an upgrade... Who knows, maybe Lou's buddy Tony might tell him to steer clear? So, my question to you is: Who is a better option and what would it cost?

Carmen, Even if Beane blows up the team I think he will keep Swisher. He is still in pre arb years and if you have read Moneyball you know how much he loves the kid. You are also forgetting Either. Either is better than Scott or Drew and most likely would only cost us Wuertz as LAD will most likely add pen guys because Torre abused his pen in the AL and it will only get worse in the NL.

MLB.coms says Hunter/Angels for five years confirmed.

Fuku 3/33 is great by me. I'll take my chances.

be nice to have this whole RF thing settled before the long xmas-to-post-newyears lull. be nice if it was done right, too. could care less how many deck chairs they wanna shuffle in the middle IF as long as they get RF right...

Now we know Hendry likes his coffee like he likes his TCR: "extra whip." Hey! I like that too!

i like my coffee like i like my and in my lap. ooooo yeah.

Now crunch, I think you blew the punchline. It should say "tied up on burlap and thrown over the back of a donkey."

Nice one Whipple. That Hunter signing is very curious to me, but if it is really ending the Angels search for 'a big bat to protect young Vlad' then it would seem marginally benefit the Cubs, since it would take them out of the running for Tejada (if either team is in the running for Tejada). I am getting really bad with the run-on sentences.

I'm a Starbucks devotee. F Coffee Bean coffee. It's terrible. Their latte's and ice blendeds are better but the coffee at Starbucks is KING! And thanks for the head's up Rob. You couldn't have called me? I would have gotten there in time. Selfish bastard. I would have bought that fat bastard some Pink's Hot Dogs. Not that is some good eats (as far as Los Angeles hot dogs are concerned.)

chifan: I love Eithier. I just don't think we'd get him for Wuertz. I think they're more likely to use Eithier to get Cabrerra from Florida.

The Angels Signing Hunter must be the prelude to another deal. My guess is they will also get Florida Miggy. I'm sure KW is bummed as the Chicago papers were prepping the Sux fans for Hunter in CF. Here's the LA Times link on Tori Hunter deal...the Angels surplus of OF's are all right handed hitters (Guerrero, Figgins, GAnderson, JRiviera, GM Jr) except Reggie Willits who is s switch hitter.

i like my coffee the way i like my women. finely ground, and in the freezer. * * * * * * * trading for j d drew would strike me as another cub attempt to try the "lightning-in-a-bottle" approach. for me, i pass. i believe i'd rather have a year of murton/fuld in right, and use my money and/or trade partners to try and drum up another starting pitcher. the idea of dempster in the rotation is great. if, you are tampa bay and nobody notices he is average or less. i hope rob's story is a pre-arranged (with hendry) cover story, masking the fact that hendry is actually in japan, signing fuku and wolfing down sushi instead of turkey on thanksgiving. * * * * * * * happy thanksgiving to all.

Yep. 5/90 on Hunter. Here's an MLB link:

Pink's Hot Dog's = massively overrated...

The Twins insist all hope of signing Santana isn't lost, that a compromise could eventually be reached, but other teams have found he is no longer off limits in trade discussions. Johan countered with somethingl like 5/126 to the Twins offer of 5/93.

"Peet’s Coffee is crap…" It then follows that you would dislike Starbuck's as well, since Howard Schutz learned the craft from the guy who started Peet's.

Looks like WSox-Linebrink for 4/19. Four years is a long time for a big-money reliever contract, especially for someone who had the benefit of Petco behind him these past years. Sox fans already starting that they'd rather sign Tori Amos than Hunter. Makes me want to laugh and throw up.

Fox Sports speculating that Angels are looking to deal Mathews to Orioles for Tejeda.

So I guess it took only one season for Soriano to become a relative bargain?

so much for predicting where hunter will go in free agent contest had him going to padres for 8

"Pink’s Hot Dog’s = massively overrated…" Superdog, however, is not.

Johann to NYM for a package of MIlledge,Maritnez and Humber/Pelfrey would be a beneficial to both teams.

I know everyone is aware of the White Sox Linebrick deal but read this article from MLBTR: First reported by Bruce Levine of ESPN Sports Radio 1000 out of Chicago - the White Sox have signed free agent Scott Linebrink to a four-year, $19MM contract. The Brewers have to be a bit disappointed, as Chicago's 8th overall pick in next June's draft is protected. Instead they'll get a second round pick from the Sox as compensation for the Type A reliever. Four years is a long time to lock in the 31 year-old Linebrink. He's never pitched in the American League, and you have to think he'll struggle. This seems like a poor signing to me.

Superdawg is always a must stop on my Chicago trips....

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  • Arizona Phil 9 hours 25 min ago (view)

    Dillon Maples does not have the right to elect free-agency if he is outrighted to the minors, but he will be automatically declared an MLB Rule 9 6YFA at 5 PM Eastern on the 5th day after the final game of the World Series if he is not added back to the 40 in the meantime. 


  • crunch 9 hours 39 min ago (view)

    p.wisdom is the new cubs all-time rookie HR leader.


  • Arizona Phil 10 hours 56 min ago (view)

    The Cubs will very likely be splitting the AZIL position players into two 14-man squads (like they did last year), with each squad playng in every other-game, and with the other squad having a Camp Day instructional work-out on a back-field when that squad is not playing in a game. There will also be five combined Camp Days during the course of the four weeks for all players from both squads.  


  • Arizona Phil 11 hours 18 min ago (view)

    DJL: No. Signing a 2022 minor league successor contract would only matter with regard to a player in the Arizona Fall League, because the AFL schedule goes past the date when minor leaguers are declared free-agents. 

    AZ Instructs ends on October 16th, which is about two or three weeks before minor league free-agency, so the three guys at Cubs Instructs who are eligible to be free-agehts after the World Series (Dakota Chalmers. Nicholas Padilla, and Eury Ramos) do not need to sign successor contracts in order to play in AZIL games. 


  • Dolorous Jon Lester 13 hours 22 min ago (view)

    Sorry to hear about your dad, Charlie. I lost my father almost 2 years ago now, some of my fondest childhood memories are going to Wrigley with him.

    All the best wishes to you, sir.


  • First.Pitch.120 13 hours 36 min ago (view)

    If you had Bote in the '11-'12- '13 Cubs draft dead pool, then you are a winner!


  • Dolorous Jon Lester 14 hours 9 min ago (view)

    Dakota Chalmers... interesting. He's scheduled to be a MILB FA, correct? Would this be a good sign he has signed a successor deal?


  • Cubster 14 hours 44 min ago (view)

    Maples dfa. Double Martini too.  Hoerner and Thompson back and Keegan to start today. Hoerner bats 5th.


  • crunch 14 hours 53 min ago (view)

    it's never a good time to be in the hospital, but things are extra complicated right now.

    hope everything goes well for everyone.

    go cubs


  • Charlie 1 day 7 hours ago (view)

    Listening to this in a hospital room because we are blacked out on I don't know which surprises me more, that the Cubs haven't beaten the Brewers since April or that the Cubs beat the Brewers in April.


  • crunch 2 days 7 hours ago (view)

    m.rodriguez to 10d IL, a.morgan returns.


  • Jackstraw 2 days 17 hours ago (view)

    I like that the team was absolutely committed to not losing back-to-back games on a walk-off passed ball.


  • Eric S 3 days 4 hours ago (view)

    And the funny thing is Rucker was the only Cubs pitcher tonight to post 0 runs allowed in the box score. You know things are really out of hand when Ross gives the okay for a Maples appearance.


  • George Altman 3 days 5 hours ago (view)

    AZ Phil,

    Is there a reason Preciado hasn't been in an ACL game in about a month?


  • crunch 3 days 6 hours ago (view)

    i'd like the 2021 version of whatever d.ross is smoking bringing m.rucker into a bases loaded, 2 run lead in the 4th situation.

    dude saw the situation and said "gimmie that guy with the 8.44era 1.59whip" as the first pen option to protect a lead.

    rucker has been in 13 games and given up runs in 8 of them.


  • crunch 3 days 6 hours ago (view)

    hendricks last 7 starts...

    9er, 1er, 4er, 8er, 6er, 1er, 7er

    3.68era - 1.29whip 4.81era - 1.35whip