Lilly Declining? Wallach Decent? Looking at the Deal

Now that the trade deadline is behind us, what are Cub fans supposed to pay attention to? The games?! I tried that earlier tonight, and

— I heard a recorded interview with Derrek Lee on WGN Radio early this evening in the run-up to the Cubs/Rockies game. David Kaplan asked Lee about Ryan Theriot, and Lee described him as "a grinder." In that moment, I came up with my own definition of a grinder. It's a guy who plays hard enough to occasionally make you forget that he's not very good.

had to say about the Cubs/Dodgers deal:

The Dodgers traded Blake DeWitt and decent prospects Brett Wallach and Kyle Smit today for Ted Lilly, an inconsistent, 34-year-old pitcher in decline, and Ryan Theriot, a 30-year-old infielder who is more expensive and worse than DeWitt. Undoubtedly, Lilly will provide some short-term gain in the rotation, but the Dodgers have actually made themselves worse in the lineup, and are paying for the privilege.

he didn't understand this trade from the Dodgers' perspective because he didn't believe Ted Lilly was good enough to make a difference in the Dodgers' pursuit of a playoff spot. Then former Cleveland GM John Hart talked about Lilly's ability to eat up innings in pitchers' parks in San Francisco, San Diego, and Los Angeles, and Harold was onboard. Reynolds also said he was surprised that the Cubs didn't get more seasoned pitching talent in return for Lilly, mentioning John Ely and Carlos Monasterios.

— Here's what :

He has struck out 92 batters in just 84 2/3 innings at Low-A Great Lakes this year, but that's mitigated by the fact that he turns 22 in December. Still, he was a two-sport star in college and is pitching full-time for the first time in his career, and he's a physical righty with power stuff. Sitting at 91-92 mph with his fastball and touching 94 with it, Wallach complements that heater with a fine changeup, although his slurvy breaking ball needs considerable work, and he has a disturbing tendency to elevate his pitches. Because of his size, stamina, and good mechanics, he'll continue to develop as a starter for now, but his long-term future might be as a power reliever.

BP describes Kyle Smit as a "far more fringy prospect" than Wallach; one who has "barely reached Double-A in his fifth professional season." They conclude that the 22-year-old Smit is a potential middle reliever but that's about it.

— Finally, if Blake DeWitt turns out to be a dog, it won't just be Jim Hendry we can blame. , we'll also be entitled to rip Greg Maddux.

Cubs GM Jim Hendry gave Maddux some credit for the decision to acquire the Dodgers infielder in the Ted Lilly/Ryan Theriot deal. "We've certainly liked [DeWitt] for years," Hendry said. "He's a tough kid. He's 24 years old, so his better days are way ahead of him. … He has a chance to be a complete player. He has to be better offensively. Greg spoke highly of him, when Greg pitched for the Dodgers, and in my discussions with Greg about him a few weeks back."


DeWitt for Theriot is a win for the Cubs just based on age and arbitration, then 2 prospects that Wilken probably likes for Lilly. better than nothing...

and what the FA market looks like for's ugly. it's so ugly that one of baker or fonte might stick around simply because there's not much better out there...even including keeping d.barney on the team.

Minor-league teams are hot right now. Daytona has won 13 in a row, Peoria six in a row. Iowa scored 15 more runs last night, with LaHair contributing three bombs. Hoffpauir, Snyder and LaHair are turning into a lefthanded murderer's row. Tennessee has clinched a playoff berth based on first-half standings. Iowa and Daytona will have to hang onto first place to advance. Peoria is not out of the running but they're five out, with three teams ahead of them.

According to Gordan Wittmeyer Cubs came very close to trading Nady and Fontenut to the Giants i guess i would ask why he did not.

Hendry pulled out of that trade after someone told him Barry Bonds retired.

I posted this in the older thread, reposting here This site is the counterpart to the Cubs yahoo blog (which will remain nameless) so maybe the readers are jackasses, but here goes: You know the saying “Even if you put lipstick on a pig, it still a pig”? Well, in that scenario, I always imagined putting lipstick around the mouth of the pig. Trading a cost controlled league average 2B for 10 starts of Lilly and shitty ass Theriot is like putting lipstick around the pigs behind area. We didnt even put the damn lipstick in the right place! Reacting to the inclusion of the minor league pitchers: What more could the Cubs want? They got a cost controlled MLB’er (an upgrade at 2nd base) for TED Freakin Lilly. Fuck Ned Colletti. Just fuck him. I won’t let the excuse he has no funds to make trades. He shouldn’t make them then. It took not being able to afford a real starting 2B to get him a shot. You may not have been the best player, Blake, but you tried your damndest. Fuck, his defense got to be really good too. Screw you Ned. This makes me sad. Let me just go on record saying I like Ted Lilly and am perfectly fine that he's on my team. But (no offense to Theriot) the rest of the deal can bite me. He gave up on Brett Wallach? Fuck this. We gave up Wallach? Fuck that shit what the fuck NO NO NO THERE IS NO EXCUSE. This is a piss poor stupid trade. No matter how much money they are getting back. This doesn’t even help the team. Our pitching has been a strength, our offense is killing us. So we trade starters. We traded a cheap 2nd basemen that can get on base…for 10 starts of Ted Lilly that wont get the team to the playoffs. Amazingly, the offense just got worse. in 3 years blake dewitt will be hitting 300 for the cubs, lilly will be pitching for the yankees, theriot hitting on high school girls at a mall in encino trying to lure them into his camaro, and the starting 2b for the don mattingly-managed la dodgers – juan uribe Here's a post from a cub fan and some replies: Hate to be Debbie Downer on you guys, but Theriot absolutely sucks. However, you guys WILL fall in love with Lilly. He’s a beast. He’s probably been my favorite Cub for the whole last decade. Anyone care to give me a scouting report on DeWitt? DeWitt is better than Theriot in every way. We know he sucks We know Theriot is awful.. DeWitt is a gamer… Lilly will be here for 10 starts and thats it. When you’re already way behind in the race, it doesnt matter. i’m happy with lilly because now we may have one of the best starting rotations in baseball… on the other hand… WHAT THE FUCK WAS THE POINT IN EXCHANGING DEWITT AND RYAN FUCKING THERIOT! his ops is below ,700 too, FUCK OUTTA HERE! Have to say —→ I once saw Ryan Theriot buy beer in Chicago a couple years ago at a Jewell. It was bud light. Yes, he’s very gritty. This fucks us so badly for next year. No second baseman and Theriot’s arb-eligibility on the payroll is crippling.

re: all Theriot jokes: bwahahaha See, and I thought he'd be drinking single malt scotch. Boom boom! One in a row.

my favorites were: "We know he sucks" and the comment about the Camaro

That's Pulitzer Prize caliber writing.

Just remembered reed johnson is on dodgers. Just need fontenot to complete the evolution of scap!

Orioles take our crap, Dodgers take our scrap! Piniella takes a nap.

Prior takes his pap. (Sorry, couldn't resist.)


clap, clap, clap.

I'll give you dap for that.

Thwap. ...and Apple has an App for that.

Silva needs to go on the DL, they can't keep burning the bullpen up every 5 days because he's not telling them the truth about his health (and the front office/coaching staff seem to be brain dead in taking him at his word).

Yeah, this is just getting too agonizing to watch, 6-1 already. I've taken to just watching the condensed games on MLB the next morning over breakfast. I can't waste 3 hours watching this slop in real time.

The only problem I see with burning up the bullpen is that some of them might escape.

Very well done.

I'm sure either Jackson or Cashner would be happy to get some chances in the rotation before the year ends.

Rudy sure got Dewitt straightened out in a hurry!

this is f'n pathetic...

freefall... elevator down, broken cables... to quote Jack Brickhouse: "whoa Nellie..." Racing to the 1st draft pick? We're only 7 1/2 games out of getting the third pick in the draft and still have 3 games left with the Pirates! Hope the next draft has a few franchise prospects. Anyone have some insight into next year's draft? Baltimore 32-72 Pittsburgh 36-67 Seattle 39-67 Arizona 39-66 KC 44-60 Cleveland 44-61 Houston 45-59 Cubs 46-59 (counting today as a loss) Washington 46-59

It doesn't really matter how talented the players we draft are, they still have to come up through our system and them play on this team.

I'm curious is MLB monitors teams to see if they are purposefully losing for better draft position. What sort of penalty is there? I'm not talking about White Sox WS tanking, but a GM and manager making, well Hendry and Piniella-like moves.

they've been making these "moves" all year. it's one thing to give a guy a 4-6 weeks to shape up early in the year during's another to sink 2 RBI slots for the 3/4 hitters for 3+ months.

I know. I was was realizing as I wrote, that it was their strategy all year.

If it's not an 18 year old SS with suspect batting eye, I doubt we'd draft em. Pick 1-14 isn't changing our 2011 draft reach.


3B Anthony Rendon of Rice is the clear top player in the draft but he fractured and dislocated his ankle in the Cape Cod League and it's supposed to be a really horrible injury. The comps they were making were Evan Longoria - great patience and power at the plate, good enough defense to stick at third. But this is his second ankle injury since he got to college (he tore two ligaments in the same ankle last year). Jim Callis of BA said he would have drafted Rendon ahead of Bryce Harper this year. Then, the draft is really deep in college pitchers (we're talking about a possible 10 college pitchers in the top 15). LHP Matt Purke (TCU), RHP Gerrit Cole (UCLA) and RHP Sonny Gray (Vandy) are the top 3 pitchers and all are potential aces. I'm a big Bruin fan but I have to say Purke is better than Cole (with Gray behind them both). And yes, that's the Sonny Gray the Cubs drafted in 2008. The only real big HS name I've seen is LHP Daniel Norris from Tennessee but HS kids are always tough to predict 10 months before the draft. The 2011 draft is way deeper than 2010. I'd give a lot to get a healthy Anthony Rendon in the Cubs system. By the by, that blog post was hilarious. The Theriot in an Encino mall comment made my day.

Brad Snyder 2 HR's in 2 innings (1 GS). 5 RBI, 17 HR's on the season. he may be 4A but I'd rather watch him bat 3rd/4th for 2 months than what DLee/ARam/Soriano bring to the table at this point.

dexter f-OW-ler...nice catch. saved a tie... -edit- not nice catch...amazing catch.

This is so typical of the Cubs to come back and make it close.

...and a typical ending after the drama...

Think it was a double, but still, wonderful catch. Broken ribs are not fun.

He's a wimp!

this friday the marlins are honoring andre dawson because jeffery loria is a piece of shit owner with a heart of gold.

my kingdom for a bullpen... via CM: "#Cubs score 3 R in 9th but lose, 8-7. It's 37th one-run game, most in MLB. They now are 13-24, and the losses also are most in MLB"

btw...can we quit letting Z pinch hit for no f'n reason? ...especially with men on base? hitting well "for a pitcher" doesn't necessarily mean "hitting well." ...hell, if he wasn't a pitcher we wouldn't stand for it.

Going into the game he was the best RBI guy on the team.

yes, he's Really Bitchy and Irritating.

Serioulsy, he had driven in like 17% of the runners on base when he came to the plate. A number or #3 and #4 hitters could only dream of.

Carlos Silva was taken to St. Joseph's Hospital in Denver on Sunday afternoon after experiencing an abnormally high heart rate during his start. The problem was corrected on the way to the hospital, the Cubs said, and Silva was resting comfortably. He will remain in the hospital overnight for observations. Silva left after only four batters and 15 pitches in the 1st inning.

it'd be interesting to see how quickly the entire game of professional baseball would collapse if they took away the GNC "speed" and energy drinks.

I hate to say it, but it's been a while since an athlete suddenly dropped dead and had a connection to supplements/energy drinks. (or more powerful elixirs) There were several football players in recent memory, and I think there were a couple of minor league baseball players.

not many want to talk about it, but banning/testing amphetamines was one of the most revolutionary things to happen to the game in quite a while it's pretty safe to say that one effected more players in the majors and minors than the whole roid thing.

Lou has trouble processing information, according to Trammell: "Trammell on giving advice to Lou Piniella: "I'm not one to keep always throwing things out there. He's asked me over the years, and there are certain things I know to remind him on. But I'm not going to constantly be giving him information because it kind of distorts or clouds his mind. That's just his style, and he's been doing it for such a long time. That's pretty normal for a guy like (Tony) La Russa or (Bobby) Cox or (Jim) Leyland, somebody like that who's been doing it a long time. I know my role, and I learned that pretty quickly."

lou just needs a MEGA X NRG ORGANIC KICKASS BOOST DRANK 2000 WITH WHOOPDIE DOO ROOT AND ANTIOXIDANTS AND BRAIN MEGAFYING [email protected]#!! i wouldn't go as far to take what tram said about others/him giving advice, though...he was probably just using too many words to say "yeah, these old guys really don't need me barking at them and i'm pretty quick to know what i should/shouldn't be barking about." dunno, though...*shrug*

he wasn't ever epic for us, but it's weird seeing theriot in dodger blue.

Submitted by Cubster on Sun, 08/01/2010 - 3:52pm. Brad Snyder 2 HR's in 2 innings (1 GS). 5 RBI, 17 HR's on the season. he may be 4A but I'd rather watch him bat 3rd/4th for 2 months than what DLee/ARam/Soriano bring to the table at this point. ======================================= CUBSTEER: I think it may be premature to label Brad Snyder "4-A." He could just as easily be a late bloomer (like Garrett Jones, Ryan Ludwick, Jim Hickman, et al). It's easy to write guys like Snyder off because he did not develop as quickly as the Indians had hoped (especially considering he was a 1st round draft pick), but if the raw talent is there and if the player has the capacity to make the changes needed to improve his game, he can still become a quality MLB player. Unlike the typical 4-A guy who has power but can't run or throw or play defense, or the type who can play defense or has speed but can't hit, or the corner IF-OF guy who can hit singles and doubles but has no HR power, or the ones who can hit RH pitching but not LH pitching (or vice-versa), Snyder is actually a very toolsy player. He has one of the top three OF arms in the Cubs organization, he has plus-speed and is a good base stealer, he is a decent defensive OF, and he has plus-power. His main deficiency in the past has been too many strikeouts and not enough walks. But over the last couple of AAA seasons and in the Mexican Pacific League last off-season, Snyder has made great strides with becoming a better hitter, being more patient at the plate, and especially with hitting LHP. He actually looks like he could be an everyday MLB RF. He will strikeout a lot, but all of the other aspects of his game look pretty good. I have Snyder rated as one of the Cubs Top 15 Prospects right now.

Does Snyder have a chance of making the majors next year?

can't speak for phil, but given snyder's age and power we'll probably see him in Sept. and a good look next spring...

DeRosa had a cardio-ablation procedure during spring training 2008. I'm not a cardiologist but Silva's preliminary info sounds somewhat like that although when DeRo discussed it after the procedure he said he had similar episodes for several years and they usually went away quickly without treatment until the spring episode. The procedure is basically a mapping of the heart's electrical circuitry then burning the area that has the short circuit. of course, it could be just related to a bad venison enchalada he had for breakfast in Denver

whatever silva's heart issues are i'm pretty sure it's due to long term exposure to ham and mayonnaise.

Why do you say ham? And do you have a link to back up your wild claim?

He's not muslim nor jewish, and latin cultures favor pork in many traditional dishes. or maybe he ate an old tire, you just can't tell. Crunch may be on to something with all the energy junk these guys take. It was his day to pitch, he might have loaded up on the caffeine and other junk that's in these things. I saw one of them (something called 5150 juice) has 500 mg of caffeine. That's the equivalent of drinking 14 cans of coca-cola at one time.

Not just pork, my man. Plantains in all fried forms! But for sure (having lived in Miami for a year) pork cracklin's. Pork chops. Lard. Yep. lotsa pork!

On Silva: The Cubs described the ailment as PSVT, or paroxysmal supraventricular tachycardia, which has as it symptoms palpitations, or a rapid heartbeat. No mention of ham & mayo. Personally, I was thinking bacon and donuts.

Has anyone read WHOM the Cubs may have gotten back in the Nady-Fontenot "deal"? I still haven't seen anything on it...

Corey Hart gets extension from Brewers. 3/26.5 That's a lot of sunglasses.

Did anyone notice that they just lost 5 straight? It's almost as if they looked at the calendar and recognized it was time to get busy losing.

Alan Trammel's mini-audition went well.....

Better than Friday's game!

5 straight what?

I know I'm in the minority here, but this team sucks monumental ass.

I know I'm in the minority here, but this team sucks monumental ass. --- Hendry reference, Silva reference, Rick/Paul Reuschel reference, Hector Villenueva reference or just a jab at Glendon Rusch?

Monumental? Actually, I had Lincoln Memorial rimmy in mind.

I'm okay with it but this deal has a weird feel around the edges. First, the obvious. Hendry makes his one millionth deal for a power-challenged second baseman. Cubs fans seem lukewarm to tepid about the trade but Dodgers fans go into convulsions. In making the trade Hendry removes the last two team leaders left on the Cubs. Lilly, a natural leader and mentor to the young pitchers on the staff. Theriot a fan favorite, self-appointed spokesman and mentor to Starlin Castro. (Being id'ed as a Cubs "team leader" is a good way to be gone like Wood, Blanco and DeRosa. Z tried and it got him anger management classes and a month off.) Not done ridding the team of second basemen he trades away Fontenot except that he doesn't get the deal done and still has Fontenot. What kind of GM tells that to the media? What kind of media doesn't ask who was trading for? It's reported that Lilly and Theriot find out about the trade, not from Hendry, but while watching tv. Hendry says nice things about Lilly but nothing, as far as I can tell, about Theriot. As we all remember, Theriot became a starter only after Hendry's trades failed and Lou put his trust in Riot at SS. He was Lou's boy. So it's a bit creepy that Hendry traded him while Lou was away at a funeral. I'm wondering if Lou knows yet. Blake DeWitt grew up a diehard Cardinals fan. Just days prior to the trade the Cubs threw at DeWitt and the league fined Cashner for doing it. (only Hendry's Cubs would try to hit a guy they want to make a deal for) At any rate, if yesterday is any indication maybe we finally have a second baseman who will stick around awhile.

Reaching much? DeWitt was A) beaned on July 11th, and B) the first batter Cashner faced.

team leaders lilly and theriot? theriot lou's boy?

That would help explain the deeply entrenched sucktitude. I think a third team leader is probably Fukudome.

We should have signed Terrell Owens.

Casey Coleman has been called up from Iowa.

oookay. his path through the minors has been interestingly rushed, but the majors already?, coleman up the day before t.diamond comes up. silva, see you on the DL.

I thought he died a month ago. He's definitely shorter than Eddie Gaedel.

can we trade paul "WAAAAAAAAAAHHHHH!!!!!" sulivan? # When Big Z points to the sky now when walking off the mound, I believe he's pointing to the ESPN satellite. about 23 hours ago via web # Operation Shutdown: Injured Silva leaves after 4 batters in Coors, just like Big Z pulled self 15 minutes before start here last Aug. 7. 12:35 PM Aug 1st via web Z is sulivan's "new bradley" maybe if Z dies in a car accident he can pop some champagne corks and celebrate his death. paul sulivan is too f'n comfortable covering this team...put his ass on the NBA beat.

Those are some serious reaches, too. The ESPN satellite?! Ooh, *burn*. Hey Paul, next time skip the rhetorical torture and just do playground taunts! Sheesh.

Does he really think in this vortex of a shit season, that Cub fa give a shit Z talked to ESPN first?

via CM... #Cubs lineup vs #Brewers for Mon nite is RF Colvin, SS Castro, 1B Lee, 3B Ramy, CF Byrd, LF Sori, C Soto, 2B DeWitt (the new guy), P Wells

Cardinals signed Nate Robertson to a minor league deal. He's the lefty starter the Marlins released about a week ago, who had very similar stats to Edwin Jackson and cost STL $13 million and two top pitching prospects less than the Sox paid for Jackson. I'd think Robertson will be up with STL in a week or so.

stats are similar, but stuff is different. jackson has his 94+mph fastball, a mid-80s slider, and a change... nate used to throw 93+mph pre-surgeries...last i saw he was hitting 90mph again. wonder what he's throwing now.

Not the same talent, but Jackson has just never put it together. Gambling $13 million that you can be the one to change someone is goofy, especially when they have an 8 year track record. Robertson borders on sucking, but so does Jackson. And one costs $13 million less.

yeah, jackson is a f'n enigma given his stuff and health.

DeWitt hitting 8th vs a rhp. Interesting.

that's his fault for getting 3 hits yesterday. if you're a hot hitter you hit 5/6/7/8...that's simple louball. =p actually, at this point it seems the rooks are batting 1/2 no matter what to get them the ab's...and after 3+ months of WTF IS THE 3/4 SLOT DOING?!?! dlee/aram have woken up.

via CM... #cubs carlos silva will go on DL to be evaluated. Coleman and Diamond added

I can't figure it out, I opened a new online store selling custom car rims and not only am I not selling anything, I keep getting perverted comments.

Ryan Theriot is an anagram for Try Antihero.


also "horny tie art"

also... "hint rear toy" lulz.

"The Tiny Roar."


Also "Shitty Baseball PLayer"...wait, what game are we playing?

dewitt welcomed to wrigley by the fans with...well, nothing. i think everyone is on their cell phones or doing a crossword or something.

once again im fooled into watching this crap. bases loaded 0 out, 3 runs already in...hey, at least it's the pitcher up.

...well, nothing. --- Proof that watching babes is job #1, especially now that we're fighting for the first pick in the draft.

I blame the entire season on Transmission.


13-1 lol wut

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Try some of this moonajuana. It looks like old tires.

holy f'n cubbery. i mean...really? really? top 8, 1 out, 16-1....22nd hit of the night for MIL...

oh yeah...welcome to the bigs coleman. you'll fit in just fine.

christ...gomez hit a 2rd time in the game...this time in the head. gallaradoadaradado got hit earlier, too. schlitter's got no business in the bigs. he sure doesn't have any business pitching inside to anyone.

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Can't believe I left Busch stadium for this.

most hits given up since the 50s in a game by the cubs...26 so far, top 9, 2 out...trevor hoffman hitting for himself for the first time in a decade (hey, he was signed as a SS out of the draft).

and hoff was his 1st ab in a decade.

Thank god.

Thank God, Lou is back tomorrow. ~cocks gun~

could be worse, at least Trammell is no longer a candidate. After 3 games like this, he'd have to be brain dead to take the job. oh, wait...campaigning for the job isn't his style. Now he'll have to beg.

just f'n bleh... bleh.

Fart. Wet fart. With a little blood.

At this point, I think they might be playing to get the number 1 draft pick, but then I realize that A) they are not smart enough to come up with that strategy, and B) if they somehow did get wind of the idea, say from the Cub Reporter, they wouldn't be competent enough to actually purposefully lose. In fact, this is my idea. Hendry should announce that the team will purposefully try to lose all of the remaining games this year to gain the #1 draft pick. He will of course be punished by MLB for saying this, but the effect on the team will be astounding. When trying to lose, they will inevitably fail, and likely win all of their remaining games! But this will only hold true until the last weekend of the season. They will be tied for first, and then some idiot will say "we realized that we are in this and that we can pull it off" at which point they will lose the final three games and finish in 2nd, 1 game out of 1st and miss the playoffs.

Even if the Cubs picked first, they'd probably reach into Juco ball and pick some guy nobody's heard of.

I made that joke the other day. If there is a knock on the current scouting director, its gotta be his love of athletes and "tools". Sure drafting 40 Shortstops will allow you to move guys defensively. Unfortunately when your lineup is 8 Shortstops and a pitcher. You score at a very 2010 Cub-like rate. Possible outlier/fluke Colvin aside. We really don't/nor have had an impact bat in this whole system. Not since......Palmiero?

Patience, friend. Hire a good scouting director and then give him six years. Tennessee is leading the 10-team Southern League in R, HR, RBI, TB, OBP, SLG, OPS and AVG. They are 3rd in SB and last in SO. Wilken draft picks: Campana, Thomas, Guyer, Wright, Jackson, Vitters, Clevenger. Lalli was an undrafted FA, I think. Chirinos and Canzler were pre-Wilken. Spencer came in a trade. Wilken may very well have had something to do with Lalli and Spencer, not to mention Castro.

shhhhh... you mean "Teflon Tim", right?

And I wasn't really bashing Wilken. I think there is a good chance he is doing okay. As a Cubs fan, however, I reserve the right to judge him based on the final analysis, and that means, what ends up in Wrigley. So I'm still in a "see it when I believe it" mode. That said, I'd be bummed if they fired Hendry and the dude replacing him dumped Wilken unless said dude hired, say, half of Florida's scouting department.

Tweeted by Phil Rogers: If Sox drive @ozzieguillen out of a job, he probably becomes top candidate to replace Lou, based on relationship w/ Hendry. Don't laugh. I wouldn't laugh. I'd stop being a Cubs fan. For that matter, not hiring Ryno, short of getting someone like LaRussa, would drive me away. And I don't think I'm alone in that. Especially given the empty seats at Wrigley, I think Ricketts knows he has to hire #23.

I don't know that everything Ozzie says can be believed, but I think he said a couple of times Reinsdorf would have to be dead before he'd consider managing the Cubs. Now, if they fired him... I don't mind Ozzie. I can see why people don't like him, but I don't mind him at all.

Well, I disagree with this. Ryno has no MLB managerial experience. While they might suck extreme donkey balls this season, I would say that running the Cubs would draw top-flight, experienced managers from all over the league. Limiting us to just picking Ryno, because he's convenient would be foolhardy. Do you mean to tell me that you would rather have Ryno managing the team over Joe Girardi, Joe Torre, who knows who else??? I am not saying that those guys WILL be available, but they certainly may be. At least with them, we would have a better idea of what we're getting...

I don't know that I want Ryno as manager, but Girardi had no managerial experience when he was hired to manage the Marlins. Brenly had no MLB managerial experience when he was hired to manage the D-Backs. (Not sure if he managed in the minors.) There have to be other examples of successful managers who've followed that path.

I am not saying that noone without managerial experience can possibly be successful. I am just saying that people without that experience are a bit more of a crapshoot. Look at the teams you list where the people were successful... D-Backs?? Marlins??? I would guess that the Cubs would have a more powerful draw than those positions... Maybe I'm wrong...

I posted something lengthy on this a couple of weeks ago. But my thinking is that the Cubs have tried the experienced manager approach - Baker and Piniella - and it hasn't gone that well. Let's try something new.

I think Jace must be having a go here... When's the last time we had a rookie manager, 1905?

When I saw Iowa play in Round Rock the team's desire to win was palpable. You could practically feel their energy on the field. Guys throwing their glove down when a run comes home during a big lead. That kind of stuff. And the way they ran the bases made me think of the All Star Game when Brandon Phillips said, "That's what we do in Cincy baby, we go first to third!" or whatever it was he said. This team is in dire straights and I liked the way the Iowa team played baseball a LOT more than the way the Cubs play the game. Enough of the retreads. I don't want Ryno in there because he's Ryno, I want him in there because he is running a damn good show in Iowa and this team is in DIRE straits.

The problem with giving Ryno the manager job is do you fire him?

That's a great question. You hope, if the team is bad enough, he quits like Lou.

The Tigers didn't have any problem firing Trammel.

The tough firing part is when you have a good team, that is just slightly underperforming. Like you want to make the playoffs but win only 85 games, fans will go apeshit if you let Ryno go after that. If he wins 65 games with a $130 million payroll and bats his worst hitter #3 all season, fans will accept that he was too stupid to manage.

Isn't that exactly the type of question that should have you re-evaluating your choice as manager?? If you are asking this question before you even hire the guy, then is your mind in the right place? You're obviously not exactly sold on the guy's potential... That's like asking yourself how easy it would be get a divorce from a woman before you marry her... Fucked from the get-go!

Don't pretty much all managers get fired?

This is all part of his plan. He's going to make it seem impossible for him to continue playing. Then he's going to somehow manage to defy the odds and play again, self-inflating his amazing abilities to levels unknown and somehow higher than last year.

EVERY manager gets fired eventually. Except Bobby Cox lol. The "pros" argument for Ryno as the next Cub manager as many have stated are obvious. I guess, with the team now nearly equalling the 2006 team in patheticness, wouldn't Sandberg - with his HOF pedigree and work ethic - give us more than, "What do you want me to say?". And, really,we have to agree that Hendry hired the "best available" (or coveted personnel) for the last two managers, and still no one wears a WS ring. So - IF Ryno were to get hired, the guy kinda fits into Ricketts long-term plan of development from within and adding FA's where appropriate. The "he has no MLB managing experience" take just doesn't make that much difference to me in today's game. Ozzie was a 3B coach. Others have succeeded and failed with little experience as MLB employees. I would not mind Brenly with Sandberg as bench coach for a couple of years. But that scenario is unlikely.

Schlitter down, Atkins up. Schlitter might finish his career never getting another chance based on his poor performance this year. It would probably nag at him forever to have a 12 something ERA in his only sip of coffee.

he had no business up bases on his control, anyway. i dunno who scouted his way to the bigs when he can't even pitch inside. you're not in highschool/college anymore...they're not using metal gotta pitch inside AND have control over it.

His minor league walk numbers are not that great, but they are not terrible either. Over his career in the minors, he has basically been consistent in walking about a batter every 3 innings. This is basically the same rate as most closers in MLB today. He also gives up a hit an inning, on average, and strikes out a batter an inning, on average. Basically, he is a consistent 8-9 K/9 IP guy, with a WHIP of 1.3 or so. He is not going to be a closer in the bigs, we know that, but nothing in those numbers scares me away from seeing if he can become a serviceable middle reliever. Now this time around he did not, but he is still 24, and he did still get 7 Ks in 8 IP, so at least he missed some bats (emphasis on some).

he still can't pitch inside, though. people are sitting on his outside crap and on the mlb level it's going to fall to hell. he might as well be pitching to kids if he's going to treat everyone like they have an aluminum bat in their hand. he has to own both sides of the plate.

AZ PHIL: With the acquisition of Blake DeWitt, do you expect the Cubs would still try to put in a waiver claim on Chone Figgins in August, or do you think that would be off the table now?

Rickets is the owner of the team, they're not claiming anyone making millions of dollars. They traded for dirt cheap Blake DeWitt instead of Kelly Johnson because he's too cheap to pay the $4 million or so Johnson would get next season. He's sure as hell not going to claim someone getting $8 mil+ per year for several more years. Get used to DeWitt, he's our new starting 2b for the next few years. Todd Walker with less power and better defense.

Todd Walker was 24 when he came to the Cubs? I thought he was much older, like over 30.

Mark Prior signs with the Orange County Flyers.

Walker was 31, so what? He hit 15, 12, and 6hr's for Cubs basically platooning and never getting 450 ab's. That final year he was traded and only had 362 ab's. Walker's first full season in the majors, at 25, he hit .316/.372/.473 with 85 runs, 41 2b's, 12 hr's, and 62 rbi. If DeWitt ever does something near that, this was a steal of a trade, but his power has regressed since he first came to the majors. DeWitt has a pretty swing, but he's done nothing to show he's a big league starting 2b (or 3b, or any position). Let him play the rest of the season and make a decision, fine, but he looks more like a bench player, or a Royal. Don't get me wrong, I hated Theriot and wanted anyone but him or Fontenot playing 2b, so getting DeWitt is better than standing pat.

Yeah, Ryne Sandberg should have been playing for the Royals too.

Based on what? That he was the all-time 2b home run king? An 11 time all-star and 11 time gold glover? That in his worst two seasons, his 1st two seasons, before he started driving in runs, he had 104 and 93 runs scored? DeWitt's 1st two seasons he has 45 and 29 runs scored. Not as many at bats as Ryno, I'll give you that, but making any kind of comparison between a no-power, no speed, .263 career hitter and a hall of famer is insane. DeWitt hasn't hit enough to be a starter for any team in baseball, except the Royals and Cubs.

Too bad you don't have access to the internet or a baseball card, where you would find that Ryne Sandberg slugged .351 in his second full season, with an 82 OPS+ age 23. DeWitt has never slugged that low and his OPS+ in his 24 year season is 99 - about league average. Looking at 24 year old hitter and deciding "that is all he's ever going to amount to" is ignorant at best.

Well, unless it's Felix Pie... Well said sarcasm meant.

There is not really much of a point to this exercise. You can pick any player and cherry pick a stat or two when they are 23 or 24 and show that Babe Ruth performed the same on that statistic at that age. So what? Players are evaluated on a wide-range of skills and performance. Sandberg was a highly touted athlete when drafted and brought up as a shortstop. He progressed through the minors rapidly, hitting well (.290 ish) at each level, and stealing over 30 bases a year at a great percentage. He stole over 30 bases his rookie year and won a gold glove already in his second. Would many have predicted his dramatic increase in slugging? Probably not. But he already was proving himself a productive major league player with his skill set, and his athletic ability suggested he could develop some power. The fact that Blake DeWitt is 24 and has a slugging percentage about the same or slightly better than Sandberg did at that age means nothing; and doesn't change the fact that little about DeWitt so far suggests he will develop like Sandberg did. Stranger things have happened in baseball, and DeWitt certainly could blossom. But holding onto 24 year-olds because a Hall of Famer happened to have blossomed at that age is a not a great strategy.

I am just using an example of a guy that we're all familiar with developing a skill set later in his career development. Did Derrek Lee have his best year at age 24? Aramis Ramirez? Wade Boggs? Jim Thome? The original comparison, that this guy is like Walker, is stupid. Write 1000 words about it, and it will continue to be stupid. Is it possible that this is the best he's ever going to get? Yes. Is it guaranteed or even a safe or intelligent conclusion? No. Can you guys think of any GM in baseball who has had a pretty good track record of plucking underappreciated hitters from other teams? Hint, think of the Cubs CF'r and a guy we traded to Cleveland for three prospects, if the Derrek Lee and Aramis Ramirez examples weren't enough of a clue.

They have OPS+ on baseball cards?!?!

What's a baseball card?

I don't have anything to base this on, but I have a good gut feeling about DeWitt. It's really his first full year in the majors, isn't it? I could look that up of course but I'd have to stop typing. I think I read somewhere, maybe here, some scout said he had the best swing of any crappy player he's ever seen. With the way this season has gone, that's pretty exciting stuff.

if todd walker could field his position worth a damn it might be worth mentioning. he was adequate on his best of days and he sucked ass trying to pull a double play. speaking of...castillio @NYM is playing some of the worst 2nd ive seen out of him ever...he's barely qualified to turn a double play at this mess.

Watching Thomas Diamond warm up, he looks more like an MLB pitcher than Casey Coleman did last night. Even before Coleman started getting hit around, his delivery looked like a kid playing catch.

Shedding salary this year does not necessarily mean not spending next year. Maybe they like Blake DeWitt as a prospect, or like him enough to not think Johnson is worth that much more money, which maybe they want to spend on other needs. Of course, it's possible that Ricketts doesn't want to spend gobs of money. I could hardly blame the Cubs for trying to get the payroll back near the $100 million range, which should still be good enough to contend pretty much every year if managed intelligently. It's also possible that Ricketts is smarter than any of us give him credit for and can look at next year and figure it's probably not the year to dump boatloads of money into a payroll anyway--maybe saving some dollars for 2012 and on, after Fukudome and Ramirez are off the books, Castro, Colvin, and Cashner have some experience, and a few of the decent pitching and infield prospects the Cubs have are closer to the bigs.

It seems to me that tonight's lineup has 7 of the 8 position players the Cubs will run out there in 2011 (everybody but Lee, with Colvin/Soriano/Soto or TBD at first, and a replacement for Colvin/Soriano/Soto if the job doesn't go to TBD). How is that lineup going to be signifcantly more run producery than the one we're living with now? Anybody want to provide straw for me to grasp?

I posted something similar a few threads back, but I'll do it again now (Data from Cot's): 2011: $103.5MM committed, not including arbitration to: Marmol Fontenot (possible non tender) Baker (possible non tender) Marshall Guzman (likely non tender) Gorzellany Hill (hopefully non tender) Soto 2012: $63.5MM committed, not including arbitration to the above, plus: Wells DeWitt Possible 2011 Lineups 6 Castro 9 Colvin 8 Byrd 5 Ramirez 7 Soriano 3 Soto 4 DeWitt 2 Castillo or 6 Castro 3 Colvin 9 Byrd 5 Ramirez 7 Soriano 2 Soto 4 DeWitt 8 Jackson So not much more productive in all likelihood. This is why I don't expect a lot of spending until 2012. By then, the only albatross contracts left will be Zambrano, Soriano, and Dempster. Byrd may be traded by this time, depending on the farm production (Brett Jackson takes over CF and Colvin goes back to RF, Castillo takes over at C and Soto goes to 1st, Vitters takes over 3rd and ARam goes FA). Are you excited yet?

The Straw: Soto, Byrd, and Soriano will do next year what they are doing this year. Ramirez stays healthy and puts up numbers like he has every year but this year. Castro and Colvin improve, somewhat, simply due to experience. DeWitt produces better than our second basemen have this year. The replacement for Lee will perform better than Lee did this year (that should be a given).

Will the pitching be as good? Will Z pitch better to make up for Silva being himself and the absence Lilly? Will the bullpen be any more reliable? This team has a lot of problems right now, and not a lot of positive changes possible (in time for 2011 at least).

I don't think all of that will happen, and of course there is pitching and defense as well. But a straw was requested and I tried to provide one.

And I think you responded well. I just lost my grip on that straw. Actually, I just think that grasping at straws in 2011 would be a bad idea, from a front office point of view. It would be better to look toward 2012.

One of my Cubs fears are that Colvin moves to 1b next year and Fukudome gets most of the playing time in RF. So Fuku's bat replaces DLee. If that's in the plans I need to sell my TV.

Agreed. We need a proven bat at first base. Especially since we lack any impact bats in the system.

Signing Adam Dunn to play 1st should honestly make this lineup look really formidable IMHO. Castro Dewitt Aramis Dunn Sori colvin/fuku Byrd Soto Am I crazy for thinking that lineup could be upper 3rd of the NL? I count 6 with 20HR power.

If everybody does what you hope for, then yeah, that would be a tough offense to face. Just remove Fukudome from the picture altogether, though. He's a 5th outfielder at this point. Although lineup construction doesn't matter, I would do this: Castro Byrd Dunn Ramirez Soriano Colvin Soto Dewitt Maybe I'm crazy, but I don't think there's going to be much free agent activity from the Cubs this offseason. If I guess at some numbers for the arb-eligible and league minimum players the payroll could easily get up to $115M without signing any free agents. If the team is willing to spend $25M to improve the team this offseason I think Dunn would be a good start target. What would it take to sign him? 3/40? 2/30?

Dunn already mentioned 4/60. Which he's probably worth, to an AL team.

I figured 4/48 to 4/52 would be a good start. Basically he takes DLee money. The pitching is still decent, and there is Silva,Fuku,Grabow (30 Million) coming off the books after 2011. So I think we could see a big Dunn like signing. Especially since there are zero big bats on the horizon. I just can't imagine the Ricketts spending 800ish Million on this team. Only to pinch pennies 1 year later? It makes absolutely zero baseball or business sense to do so. Especially after they witness the empty seats this August and September.

"Especially since there are zero big bats on the horizon." Maybe you just don't like left-handed hitters, but there are three pretty big bats at Iowa, Snyder, LaHair and Hoffpauir, none of whom was drafted by Wilken, by the way. LaHair and Hoffpauir are first basemen. Putting Hoffpauir aside, since he had a shot already (although not much of one), LaHair's line at Iowa is .316/.384/.569/.953. Since June 1st he's .337/.410/.663/1.072. First base is not a hard position to fill, since there are few defensive requirements. Every team has AAA players more or less like Hoffpauir and LaHair, but few teams have an opening at first, like the Cubs do. When there's an opening, a player like Garrett Jones (who had underwhelming minor-league numbers) steps in, and what do you know, he can still swing the bat, just like last year and the year before.

So lets not get Dunn because we have Hoffpauir? Maybe we can get Scott McClain in here to compete with LaHair and Hoffpauir for the First base job? None of those guys are prospects. None of those guys should be counted on for anything more than helping Iowa win some games.

dunn most likely isn't gonna happen at 15m-ish a year for a 1st/DH. something tells me the SP/pen will see more of the limited money available.

There are three pretty big bats at Iowa, Snyder, LaHair and Hoffpauir Ha! Yup- those three are kinda' like Adam Dunn. You have to be kidding me...

If you could read better and/or control your sarcasm, I wouldn't have to phrase everything twice. Doc Aaron said there are "no impact bats in the system," not that there are no Adam Dunns in the system. I pointed out that there are three impact bats at Iowa. In the system means in the minors, where they are slugging as well as anybody else's prospects. Nothing against Dunn, although I do have something against four-year deals for high-mileage players.

I am going to go out on a limb and say that even with Snyder, LaHair and Hoffpauir, there are still no MLB impact bats in the system. My sarcastic point above is still the same. There are no real impact bats anywhere near Dunn's caliber in the Cubs system.

Funny how Snyder, LaHair and Hoffpauir have hit five home runs between them since your dismissive comments yesterday. They're having an impact on the Tacoma Rainiers; also on home attendance in Des Moines, where they drew just under 10,000 last night, 13,000 tonight.

i'm sure that it being friday night has someth...well...nevermind, i guess that's not important. we'll see snyder soon enough...hopefully he'll find a good amount of ABs...we'll probably see a lot of him in spring if they decide to leave 1st to a battle, too.

Pretty sure that having an impact is different in the minors than having an impact on a major league team.

Dunn is a terrible middle of the order hitter. Well okay, not Fukudome terrible, but if he's not hitting one of his 40 HR's (20 of which are probably going to be solo shots), he's walking or K'ing. That's not the guy you want in the middle of the order to drive in runs.

Agreed, This order needs more scrap,hustle and poor plate discipline. Take that 40 Homer shit to Yankee stadium!!! We don't need your kind over here!!!

FYI, basically half of everyone's home runs are solo shots. Look up anybody, Bonds (762-450), Pujols (393-210), Aramis Ramirez (280-142), Ted Willaims (521-271), etc. That's just the way it is. Dunn is 344-195, so he is right there with everyone else. So that point specifically is not a great criticism. But the problem is that he doesn't drive in any other runs. He has 344 HR and 848 RBI, which is a complete joke. To give you an idea, he is 82nd on the all-time HR list, to get to someone with fewer RBI than that, you have to go to - wait for it - Alfonso Soriano, who at 115th has 309 HR and 817 RBI. But this is not shocking since he was a leadoff hitter for a good part of his career. The next guy on the list with less than 848 is Gormon Thomas in 168th place with 268 HR and 782 RBI. The next guys are Bob Allison, Tony Armas, Tony Clark, Jose Valentin, and Mickey Tettleton, moving down to player with 100 fewer homeruns than Dunn. I think Dunn is a fine piece to a team, but he shouldn't be considered the focal slugger. And he shouldn't be paid $15 million a year. His comparables are guys like: Jay Buhner, Pat Burrell, Richie Sexson, Dean Palmer, Cecil Fielder, and Danny Tartabull. If you are expecting that and paying for that time of player, I think Dunn would be fine.

Dunn is leading his team in % of runners OB driven in this year at 15.7%, was third last year at 14.2% and was second on the Reds in '08 with 15.6%, not great numbers but not totally horrid. At the end of the day, he drives in 100 runs, scores 100 runs and makes the pitchers throw strikes to get him out. Is that worth $15 million? Probably not to the Cubs in '11, but it's a valuable set of skills he brings to the plate, and I imagine he'll become a pretty solid first basemen. If you can afford it, sometimes it's better to get a FA hitter a year too early than wind up looking for one a yer too late.

I think he is an absolute must at this point. Here is my thinking in why. 1. The Ricketts aren't and absolutely shouldn't go into a rebuild mode 2. There is already well over 100 Million committed to next years team. It would look like a HUGE failure to allow another 100+ payroll win 70-ish games in 2011 3. First base will be a huge hole that needs to be filled with the most capable bat possible. The lineup is underpowered without a major slugger added somewhere. 4. There is nobody anywhere on the horizon in the minors that would be blocked at first. 5. As bad as this season has been. Adding a first tier slugger at first could still make this roster a mid 80 win team.

Why are people so excited about Cashner? He throws in the upper 90s, but he only has 18 Ks in 28 innings. His fastball is Farnsworthian in its straightness, and his control is not very good. If Cashner had played wide receiver at Notre Dame, I believe the perception of him would be a lot different.

There are 6 rookies on the pitching staff. It is gonna suck. I suffered through Marmol as a starter. 2006 eventually ended, mercifully. Even though Castro fucked up going for an extra base, he tried to make something happen and tripped. But at the plate he is getting it. Diamond looked pretty good, but that flat fastball is gonna get punked. Berg looks terrible. Russel, ok. They all need experience and they are getting it "by fire" now. It doesn't make any difference in the 2010 scheme of things. The offensive offense is still anemic. Colvin needs to learn the strike zone and stop trying to pull everything. If all these guys are making the same mistakes next year, then we got some problems.

I think it was one year early to raid the farm system for bullpen pitchers. Schlitter, Atkins and Berg are not on a par with some of the pitchers who are scheduled for Iowa next year, like Archer, Shafer and Carpenter. Scott Maine is another one who has performed better than the call-ups; but Piniella tends to think of lefties as loogies, not guys who can give you a couple of innings. Then there's Samardzija, who has given up 40 hits in 64 innings. His 5.7 H/9 is the lowest in the organization after Marmol's 4.6. Samardzija has used up a lot of options, though, and they need him to stick the next time they call him up.

The Cubs have already used Samardzija's option this year... you don't use an option each time they move him.

It turns out MLB aren't found fully developed under a cabbage in the garden. Cahsner was very good in AA and AAA this season before his promotion. His control has been pretty bad, especially recently. They also made him scrap his change when he got called to the bigs, which besides being stupid, may have something to do with his issues.

They also made him scrap his change when he got called to the bigs Funny, as I was watching him last night I was thinking he really needs a third pitch

People are excited about Cashner because: He was dominant as a starter in the minors this year He was dominant as a reliever in college He was drafted just a few years back, is young and already in the majors Other than 2 or so bad outings (which I think can be forgiven as a rookie), he has been one of our best relievers. Comparing Cashner's performance to Smardizija's performance is actually a benefit to Cashner IMO. You appear to believe that if a player doesn't dominate in every single game from the time they are called up (whether because they have a 95 mph fastball or otherwise)they are terrible. This of course would have led you to trade Greg Maddux before he was 25, Ryne Sandberg after about 30 ABS and any other player who wasn't performing at their peak immediately after being called up from the minors.

Wait, now Cashner is Sandberg? I thought DeWitt was Sandberg?

Which guy is Larry Bowa?

i still don't understand how the cubs haven't had a delay of game from fans throwing stuff on the field. i've seen more trash for less steady suck. the f'n astros have a better

#7 pick!!!

the new TCR formatting rocks.

LOL, yeah what the hell is going on?

i blame obama