Cubs Walk-Off with 7-6 Decision at Fitch

After Neftali Rosario was walked intentionally to load the bases and set-up a potential game-ending double play, Taylor Davis drilled a one-out two-run game-winning walk-off single on a 2-2 pitch past a a diving 3rd baseman into LF to score Marco Hernandez from 3rd base with the tying run and Gioskar Amaya from 2nd base with the winning run, as the AZL Cubs rallied for two runs in the bottom of the 9th to edge the AZL Rangers 7-6 in Arizona League action at Fitch Park Field #3 in Mesa this morning.  

box score

The Cubs led 5-1 through three innings, plating two runs in the bottom of the 2nd on a Marco Hernandez two-run triple into the RF corner following back-to-back two-out singles by Trey Martin and Kyung-Min Na, and then three more in the bottom of the 3rd on a Taylor Davis RBI GO, a Ryan Cuneo RBI double, and a Kyung-Min Na RBI single.   

Two rehabbin' Iowa Cubs were in the AZL Cubs lineup today, as Marquez Smith (on the I-Cubs 7-day DL since 6/26 with a hand injury) played 2B and hit 3rd, and Welington Castillo (on the Iowa DL since 7/28 with a hamstring injury) was the catcher and hit clean-up. Both of the I-Cubs played seven innings, with mixed resuits.

W. Castillo doubled twice (one a near-HR slammed off the right-centerfield fence, and the other a near-HR crushed off the top of the LF fence), and looked fully mobile behind the plate. (And none of the Ranger baserunners dared to run against him, either). This will be Castillo's only rehab game action, as he will be rejoining the Iowa Cubs in Tacoma on Friday. 

Marquez Smith looked fine right up until the very end (hitting the ball hard twice), before tweaking a groin or a quad while running out a pop-fly in the bottom of the 7th in what was supposed to be his final AB. Since he is at Fitch Park rehabbing a hand injury, and since a quad or groin strain is a completely different problem, Smith could very possibly be spending considerable more time on the DL while dealing with this new medical issue.    

LHP Hunter Ackerman (Cubs 2010 4th round draft pick out of Louisburg JC) got the start for the AZL Cubs today, and threw four innings (61 pitches - 38 strikes), allowing two runs (both earned) on four hits, while walking two, and striking out two. The lefty got a ton of ground balls (10/0 GO/FO including two 6-4-3 DP) with his high-80's two-seamer, and a few swings & misses with his plus-curve, although he also bounced several in front of the plate.   

Down 5-1, the Rangers rallied for five runs in the top of the 7th off Cubs RHP Felix Pena, who had breezed through his first two innings of relief (six-up & six-down on only 17 pitches). But Pena could only get one out in the 7th, allowing a two-run HR to Rangers DH Clark Murphy, and then three more runs on three hits and a HBP after that (with LHRP Andrew McKirahan allowing two inherited runners to score on a WP and an RBI single). 

Up 6-5, the Rangers were in a good position to add some insurance in the top of the 9th, as Cubs reliever Santo Rodriguez surrendered a bunt single and a double with no outs. But (with the Cubs playing a drawn-in infield to cut down a potential score), Rodriguez induced a weak grounder to 1st (3-U) for the first out (with both runners holding their respective base), and then struck out the last two hitters of the inning (one looking and one swinging) to end the threat.

The Cubs could not have asked for a better set-up coming into the bottom of the 9th, trailing by only one run with hot-hitting Marco Hernandez and Gioskar Amaya due up 1-2. And the two young infielders did not disappoint, either, as Hernandez came back from 0-2 to work a ten-pitch walk, before Amaya (with the Ranger infield expecting a bunt) drilled a single through the 5.5 hole into LF to advance Hernandez to 2nd. Gregori Gonzalez then beat the wheel-play and laid down a picture-perfect sacrifice bunt to advance the runners to 2nd and 3rd with one out. 

Neftali Rosario was walked intentionally to load the bases and set-up a potential game-ending DP, but Taylor Davis (possibly the slowest runner in professional baseball) upset the Ranger plan, working the count to 2-2 before hammering the game-winning hit to the left of the third-baseman and into LF. Hernandez scored the tying run easily from 3rd, and with AZL Cub manager Juan Cabreja enthusiastically waiving him around third, Amaya scored the winning run from 2nd, sliding home just ahead of the left-fielder's throw in a cloud of dust as Hernandez directed Amaya (with hand signals) to slide to the outside of the plate and touch the plate with his left hand.  

With a single and a two-run triple today, Hernandez extended his hitting streak to 16 games, and improved his "slash line" to 358/397/509. And with two walks and a single, Amaya improved his "slash line" to 366/408/483. Hernandez is now 10th in the AZL in BA, second in RBI, tied for 3rd in doubles, and tied for 6th in triples, and Amaya is 4th in the AZL in BA and is tied for 3rd in triples.  

By rallying to edge the AZL West-leading Rangers, the AZL Cubs remain five games behind the AZL Giants in the AZL East, but two games ahead of the AZL Reds for the AZL Wild Card lead, with 15 games left to play. The three division winners and a Wild Card team (the second-place AZL team with best record) will qualify for the AZL playoffs.

And if you think winning doesn't matter in the minor leagues, you didn't see the AZL Cubs mob Taylor Davis after his game-winning hit.


from Callis #Cubs sign 5th-rder Tayler Scott for $279,950. Slot = $157.5k. Arizona HS RHP throws 90-93, flashes good breaker. #Arizona commit. #mlbdraft

Tayler Scott is the South African kid whose family moved to the U. S. so Tayler could work with pitching guru Tom House. BTW, Tayler is also an outstanding soccer player, and was set to play both baseball and soccer at the University of Arizona.

BTW, Tayler is also an outstanding soccer player, and was set to play both baseball and soccer at the University of Arizona. --- The Cubs could loan him out to the Chicago Fire, they've had a lack of talent the last few years as well. Speaking of which, who was the last two sport player in any major U.S. sports? We had a few of them going for a while 15-20 years ago, but that seems to have died off. Deion Sanders, Brian Jordan, of course Bo Jackson, etc.

baseball payrolls are so extreme...and the disaster of putting up with deion sanders for a playoff team in the early 90s...teams now tends to "buy off" any potential 2-sport stars so they just play one game. understandable, but it was kinda cool...kinda.

regards to Dunston Jr... Good luck with your decision, @s_dunstonjr. Looks like win-win, either get paid nicely to play for #Cubs or get to attend #Vanderbilt. followed by... @jimcallisBA yes it is and we will see what happens over the next few days #Vandy #Cubs that was prefaced by callis changing his opinion on Dunston Jr. signing from a yes to a maybe seems Jacquez has picked Texas...

"I don't mind going to school" certainly doesn't sound like someone who wants to go to college.

heh, he deleted at least 2 of his tweets, one read "Texas Bound!" and was labeled "2 hours earlier" from when I posted that comment.

it's still there....twitter is just dumb. if you linger on there for a few minutes all of a sudden they appear as "new" tweets even though they posted hours ago. i still don't get how they feed their info...checking some sportswriters twitter sites you can get disappearing/reappearing tweets just by refreshing. ==== jacquez_ricky Ricky Jacquez @NicoMoran not yet still weighing options but schools sounding pretty legit right now 3 hours ago jacquez_ricky Ricky Jacquez @BleacherNation i would love more than anything to start my career and become a cub but its a tough decision. 6 hours ago jacquez_ricky Ricky Jacquez Texas bound! 6 hours ago

okay, thanks for catching that

twitter's recent updates to how they direct news/updates to profiles and how inept it is reminds me of the wonderful job facebook did destroying facebook "chat" with their latest update.

Great for organizing riots though. orsotheysay

Or telling your neighbors that rioters are on their way

Way too complicated for me. I'll just go back to letting Rob G disseminate it for me.

my name is bryce harper...i'm really good at baseball for my future goals involve MVP awards and racking up fines in MLB.

Looks like it caught the front corner of the plate to me, but it's hard to tell from that angle. Either way it was a really good pitch.

Let me be the first to call it on TCR: Harper is on PED's and has a major rage issue.

Justin Sellers being called up by Dodgers, he was a Cub for a spring training in the Wuertz trade and then moved to Dodgers.

Thanks for winning games, douchebags. Next year lets do this while the team is still relevant.

So you're on board with the "let's bring this team back and try harder next" year plan? Hendry Fo-evah!

Groan... a lot of things could be said about Hendry... the simple fact is the Cubs currently have one of the top payrolls in MLB, one of the worst rosters in MLB, and an organization in shambles. The only thing this franchise has in abundance is excuses.

Many teams in the Cubs situation would have a difficult time getting hot at this point in the season, largely because they realize it is a season with no playoff possibilities so they (1) play youngsters to get them some experience and (2) trade veterans for prospects to build for the future. Hendry is a renegade and fights this trend, making sure the Cubs will not get a better draft pick or other teams prospects.

I don't know which is worse. What you are saying, or the realization that if they played kids and the kids did well they'd come up with excuses to not play them next year.

you'd really hate how oakland handled this trade deadline. it was weird how a lot of people thought guys would fly off teams and they're still sitting around waiting to hit waivers and see how that works out. even guys who should be "cheap" relative to talent given up have stayed in place. cubs didn't have a whole lot to shift once aram decided he didn't want to go anywhere and whatever is up with the k.wood situation. still a little surprised no one wanted r.johnson...

I haven't checked the rankigns, but maybe unlike the Cubs, Oakland has guys they can offer arbitration to and get draft picks in return.

more folks seemed befuddled bout the Royals then A's from what I read, I think Willingham and maybe Crisp were the only ones anyone thought would get moved. I guess maybe DeJesus, but him and Matsui were too busy being awful before the deadline.

Jackson is the poster boy for the article, though not ranked #1, obviously. From an aforementioned Who-the-F&ck author.

Some scouting on Jackson & Flaherty. Another W-T-F author?

I enjoyed that, I guess because he told me what I wanted to hear about Jackson and Flaherty. A scouting report on Marlon Byrd, the current occupant of center field with the Cubs, would talk about how, over his career, he has shortened his swing by 40-50 percent in order to catch up with fastballs, and added 40-50 percent to his bicep measurement so that with his truncated swing, he can hit a ball to the warning track and occasionally get one over the fence. Did Gary Hughes scout him, too?

Good stuff.

In all seriousness, when you read stuff like that, am I the only one who thinks: "I am not a professional scout, but I play one on the Internet."? The bit about Jackson being a high school pitcher was particuarly funny to me. I would guess about 75% of AAA players were high school pitchers.

I think scout school is a 10-day program, not really hard stuff if you care to get paid little and travel a lot. Nonetheless, I found the article informative. Your results may vary... interesting story about Marlon Byrd I found from their site.

holy what a road he went down to end up where he did. no wonder he's so damn cheerful.

there's a quote by some manager recently..can't remember who.. they were talking pitching by non-pitchers and brought up about how a hitter offered to pitch because he once threw a no-hitter in highschool...the manager's response was "who didn't throw a no-hitter in highschool?" or something similar.

ends up #8 for those w/o a subscription wtf author seems reasonable in his assessment though... Brett Jackson (Cubs) Solicited Response: Appeared on every list TCF: Jackson lacks the ceiling of every other player on this list, yet his name appeared on all solicited responses. He’s Mr. Solid-Average; he is a good but not great defensive center fielder, but he will be able to play the position in the majors because he has enough speed and quickness for range, his routes are improving, and his arm is at least average. At the plate, Jackson is a good but not great hitter, with some pop but some miss in the swing, though his approach isn’t wild and he’ll be able to reach base. Again, Jackson lacks the tools to be a star, but he’ll be Mr. Solid-Average at the major-league level, and that’s an extremely valuable commodity to have under team control for six seasons.

It be an excellent commodity if a competent GM was going to negotiate those 6 seasons.

is Hendry now overpaying arb-eligible guys? besides Marmol, he almost has never given a guy a multi-year deal which seems to be what you prefer.

Jeff Samjay seems to be doing pretty good in his club controlled years. Wood and Prior made out pretty well. Marmol got an inexplicable contract. Z got a 40% over market extension in his last club controlled year. Who else has come up through the system that's been worth anything?

Marshall? Soto? Arguably, I guess, Theriot and even Wuertz.

Seamless management!

I wasn't disagreeing with you at all--I actually don't know the numbers on any of those guys or how they compare to what similar players have received. I was just trying to think of other players the Cubs have brought up that might have been worth a little bit of money.

Marmol got an inexplicable contract. only you believe this Z got a 40% over market extension in his last club controlled year. love to see the math on that no idea what the Samardzija and Prior deals have to do with anything, unless Jackson signed a major league contract that no one knows about.

per Muskat... Cubs lineup vs Nationals: SS Castro, RF Johnson, 3B Ramy, 1B Pena, CF Byrd, LF Soriano, 2B Barney, C Hill, P Dempster the last days of KHill?

Did Colvin get sent down?

Yes, by all means, let's play our washed up backup catcher and spare part utility OFer over the players we should be taking this time to evaluate! Great plan!

day game after a night game dude and W. Castillo is in Arizona as you can tell from the article. the sitting T. Colvin thing is becoming infuriating though

I know Castillo is in AZ. That does not mean that there aren't several others just as good as Hill is down there. Clevenger seems like a backup candidate...

employing a pitcher-friendly backup catcher isn't unique to the Cubs and once they decided to keep Hill in spring training, not gonna reverse course mid-season. Especially when you have a manager afraid to upset his veterans that seem to like him. When Soto is hurt and Hill is getting the bulk of the playing time, that's pretty upsetting, but these instances don't bother me much. Anyway, clearly by playing Reed Johnson, Q-Ball is trying to win as many games as he can to keep his job or look good for another job down the road rather than do anything for the good of the franchise.

After convincing our dullard owner that the only problem with the Cubs earlier were injuries, Q-Ball must believe he has to try to win games now to keep his job. At least that's what Hendry told him...

"Pitcher Friendly" is code for "can't hit", isn't it? I wonder what the TCR community would think of a all hit, no defense backup. Making outs, and double plays, and allowing stolen bases are so readily tangible I guess it's hard balance that properly against his calling and receiving skills. He does have a lower CERA than Soto and a better win/loss record than the team when he starts (I wouldn't be surprised if the CERA is totally explained by the fact that he plays against his counterpart, shitty backup catchers usually).

I wonder what the TCR community would think of a all hit, no defense backup. they would build him a statue.

We're not mid-season any more. This season is OVER. Time to figure out what we have for NEXT season. Whether the Cubs see it or not, Hill has no future. Try out someone who might!

I doubt anyone disagrees with you except for the ones actually making the decisions.

The minute the manager puts what's good for him in front of what's good for the team, he should be FIRED. They are squandering a 45-day period to evaluate some of their youth. Ugh! I hate going through this...

why burn up arb. eligable time on guys who probably won't be 2012 opening day ready even on the best of projections. it'd be nice if wellington and carpenter were healthy...wellington should be very soon. we should be seeing what jay jackson can do, but he's in year 2 of taking a step backwards...this one more serious than the last. j.gaub is healthy + close to ready...should see him soon enough, but he's just a middle relief prospect. i know some people like m.smith, but aram is playing 3rd and benching him for no reason isn't going to happen on anyone's team...besides, he's not much of a prospect though he's not trash. i like b.jackson, but i don't think he needs to be rushed to the bigs to solve a problem that doesn't exist in CF.

As a rule, I love prospects and hate seeing old retreads taking up roster space. Colvin vs. Johnson could make me reconsider my rule, however. What objection do people have to Colvin--or anyone else--earning his starts? (Reed Johnson certainly has to earn his.) In this latest go-round, Colvin has 4 hits in 20 at bats, or 1 every 5, which makes it problematic whether he'll get enough at-bats to get a hit today if you play him. It's true that 2 of his hits are homers, which gives him a homer every ten at-bats. If a manager really thought Colvin was going to get a home run every 10 or 15 at bats, he would play him. Maybe that's how Colvin will eventually earn his starts, by hitting enough bombs to allow everyone to ignore all the poor at-bats. It works for Soriano. But I don't think Colvin is there yet.

What makes you think this is the last of Hill?

I hope he is planning an assassination attempt. No offense to Koyie Hill and those who love him, but besides death, what other way is there to remove him from the roster?

I hope he is planning an assassination attempt. ---- Pigeons and Cockroaches, tough to kill given all the tourists but it can be done.

I wonder if Koyie Hill called that pitch to Zimmermann. -edit- look at the replay and Hill was set-up low and outside, the pitch ended up middle in.

Which is my point regarding pitch calling and setting up. If you throw good pitches where any catcher tells you to, you're going to do alright. If you throw pitches that don't look like they're going to be strikes and grove fastballs, you're going to get lit up.

video of it smooth by the announcer to catch his hit streak mistake

from gammons NL official:"people keep waiting for(C)Pena, (H)bell, Kubel and Wandy to go on waivers."

wonder if there will be a ceremony when Jayson Werth takes over for Soriano as the worst contract out there?

A lot of people expected Werth's return to earth.

and Soriano's

carl crawford already did that.

Why is Crawford's contract worse?

$20m a year for the next 7 years was bad before the ink dried, imo...his 2011 so far hasn't done much to make it better.

jayson werth's was worse, but much of crawford's value is his defense which no one will ever appreciate at those dollars and he's 2 years younger. Anything can happen and all, but at the end I'll be thoroughly surprised if Crawford doesn't easily outperform Werth on both sides of the diamond.

no one will appreciate anyone's LF defense in BOS...very short and the biggest skill is "reading the wall."

true, luckily the Red Sox play 81+ games a year somewhere else. fact is, they had the money and they're winning and nobody on the Red Sox seems eager to replace him.

yeah, it just blew my mind how much he cost and for how many years. guy stuggles for a .800 OPS and a large chunk of that slugging "power" comes from hitting triples...which wouldn't be an issue if his contract wasn't 7yrs and him being 29. i don't think he's trash, but he got a prime slugger's contract.

I agree and was just as puzzled when he got the deal. Crawford's appeal is his speed. It influences his ability as a hitter and on defense. Speed players rarely keep top flight speed into their 30's. If Crawford can compensate for his inevitable decline in speed by turning on the ball more and hitting a few more hr's, it's not so awful, but now we're arguing that he needs to adapt as he gets older for it to not be a bad contract. Also, and I said this when he signed, a speed type player going to a climate that is cold and rainy for the first month plus and final month of the season doesn't bode well for pulled hamstrings. Just for that case, it would have made more sense for Crawford to sign with the Angels or another warm weather team. I think the Red Sox completely overpaid for him, and I don't know what other team they were trying to outbid, if any, it seems more like they had decided XYZ was the contract they were going to offer, regardless of competition. If Reyes, who is similar to Crawford but has a history of leg injuries, gets a deal like that, it will be another mistake.

once again, don't think anyone was really arguing that he got overpaid. Just hard time seeing how you could think Werth's deal isn't worse. Werth was a prime candidate for not giving a shit the second he got his deal. fwiw, Angels allegedly offered 6/108 with a 7th year option, so the Red Sox only went a little crazy, but it's not like other teams really know what's being offered. Just for that case, it would have made more sense for Crawford to sign with the Angels or another warm weather team. actually it would make more sense for Crawford to sign for the most money cause he gets paid regardless if he's injured and I'm sure you never plan on yourself getting injured.

That's why I wonder why Crunch continues to say Crawford's is worse.

how about "time will tell" never hit 20hr...plays LF in BOS...ob% lingering around the .350 mark...29 years old and got 7 years, 20m. that's a top slugger contract.

No one is saying it's a good contract. We're saying it's not as bad as Werth's.

i realize this.

Problem with Crawford is that so much of his value is tied to his legs. legs tend to not age well. (see: Soriano, Fonzie)

It's been my observation that the guys that age the best replace abilities with brains later in their careers.

What age was Soriano when he signed his deal? What age was Crawford? See: Analagoy, Crap.

Soriano signed in Nov 2006, and was not quite 31. Crawford signed in Dec of 2010, at age 29. It's not that far off. Crawford and Soriano, what they really have in common is that neither one gets on base as well as you'd like.

Soriano also had a consistent 30-40 Homer bat to go with consistent 30-40 steal speed. Crawford has 10-15 Homer power. At the time most people figured the last couple years of Soriano's deal would be onerous. Nobody could have known he'd hurt his hamstrings the first month of year one and lose most of his best tool.

A couple issues with this. Would you rather have a guy who hits 40 home runs with no stolen bases, or 0 HR's with 40 stolen bases? So, speed wasn't his best tool. The other issue, is that we're talking about Soriano being under contract, for essentially three older years. The two years older that he started, and the additional year on the deal. The Cubs are going to owe Soriano $54 million for his 36 to 38 years. The Red Sox are going to owe Crawford $0. How much more would you have liked the Soriano deal if he were a FA this off-season?

God....Soriano at age 36-38.... I suddenly feel like punching someone..

Talking 20 months difference. Talking an extra contract year for Soriano, and more annually per year for Crawford. Pretty damn close comps in a sane persons eyes. Speed was Soriano's best tool because he could use it in more than one area. Power was also a very nice plus tool in his arsenal. Crawford's best tool is also his speed. His bat tool is much weaker than Soriano's was in his prime. At peak Soriano was a better player. Unfortunately for us he got hurt 11 games into his Cubs tenure. He's never been the same player since. If the same injury happens to Crawford. He will be even more of an albatross than Soriano currently is. That in and of itself makes his contract a bad one.

Let's see. There's me and Theo Epstein on one side of the debate. On the other side we have you and Jim Hendry... and I am in the insane one? Using the same "logic" you applied here, you would never give a pitcher a multi-year deal, because one injury to their arm will ruin the contract. Just to correct you though: "At peak Soriano was a better player." By Fangraphs, Crawford's best pre-FA season was about 1.8 wins more than Soriano's. At BP it was 1.1 more wins.

I'm not a fan of long term deals to Pitchers. How many long term high $ Pitching contracts have turned out well for the teams?

How many long term high $ pitching contracts have turned out well for the teams? How many long term any contracts work out well? If you want to win with any sort of consistentcy, you have to give them out.

Obviously I'd like to see that deal go away. I thought the deal was excessive at the time. Seemed like we were bidding against ourselves the whole time (A common Hendry theme). However I do understand the thinking of doing it at the time. 2006 was a complete disaster. New ownership wanted to make a splash. McFail had already been canned. Hendry,McDonough and Co. were in "Hide Saving Mode". Just point out it wouldn't have been quite so bad if Soriano didn't blow out his legs 11 games into his contract. Could be worse though. We could have 6.5 years and 130 more dollars of Carl Crawford and his .687 OPS out in LF.

Crawford's defense in LF in Wrigley would be nice, at least. I still don't understand why Crawford can't play CF, either. The Crawford, Soriano, and Werth contracts were all excessively terrible. Personally, I think the Werth contract is the most terrible if only because of its potential to financially handcuff the club that signed it. Crawford alone can't destroy the Boston roster, and Hendry needed to make a number of other bad (if not quite as atrocious) signings to do the damage the North side is currently enduring.

Agreed, Though the Washington guy seems to be in the same "splash making" mode that Hendry was in at the time.

he probably can and would if needed, just comfortable there and Ellsbury is no slouch. Nationals have plenty of cash, they've been trying to spend it over the last 3 years, no one wants it. They'll be big players in the Fielder/Pujols sweepstakes. Werth one is atrocious to me, cause he doesn't give a shit and it's from his age 32-38 seasons. Maybe if Strasburg and Harper and Co. make them relevant again, he'll become interested, but him, much like Soriano, were just happy to get the money. Soriano was age 31-38 Crawford age 29-35

Splitting hairs. Difference between a Soriano turning 31 before opening day and Crawford turning 30 in the middle of year 1. 20 months difference when they signed the contract. Either way both contracts suck. Soriano was the better player in his prime though.

20 months is a lot closer to 24 months which is 2 full years. Baseball age seasons is pretty well defined, not sure why you're trying to change it to suit your argument. Soriano was the better hitter in his prime though Fixed.

Not all defense is created equal. Positions like 1st,LF and to lesser extents RF and 3rd are spots where bats need to carry the day. The most ninja Left Fielder or First Baseman in history isn't going to make up for a .687 OPS.

undoubtedly the first 4.5 months of a 42+ month deal is the real Carl Crawford.

Did I miss the years on his BR page when he was a perennial 30 HR 100 RBI 1000 OPS contributor?

you missed this previous 5 years to their deals going backwards. Soriano: 5.3, 2.3, 2.1, 5.0, 5.7 Crawford: 7.5, 5.8, 2.8, 3.3, 4.8

Those numbers are terribly skewed by Soriano being a bad 2nd baseman and Crawford being a good fielding left fielder.

Soriano was a LF'er the last season and using your criteria where the first month or season completely validates or invalidates a decision, the contract was great. shame he was 31 when he first started playing on it.

Yea - damn those numbers that "skew" things by taking the whole game into consideration rather than just half of the game!

Fielding isn't half the game for a left fielder.

Sure, which is why WAR has a positional adjustment.

Not as much as it should be. Also WAR's are different depending on what source its coming from.

Not as much as it should be. I'd love to see your analysis on that. Also WAR's are different depending on what source its coming from. Sure... and I'm pretty sure that they all said that Crawford was better than Soriano.

I see. My perception of the Nats was that they were cash-strapped, but that was just an assumption based on their generally shitty performance I guess, and (last I was aware of it at least) poor turnout at the ballpark.

Wait...Why doesn't Werth give a shit Rob? I'm not being sarcastic, I just didn't realize he had a bad attitude.

always been a guy that I heard had a bad attitude and kind of a dick. more rumors and innuendo to be honest, but where there's smoke, there's usually fire and there's been a lot of smoke around Werth for a long time. here's one such example, I've read plenty more. The first sign of trouble was when Charlie Manuel mentioned that there were some players in the locker room concerned about money (Werth is the most notable soon to be free agent). Then Manuel took it a step further and opined that it was affecting Werth at the plate- Werth denied it. Then he cursed at a fan. And gave a half-assed apology. reported a rumor about him and Chase Utley's wife (likely not true, but the timing couldn't have been worse). -edit- not that he's particularly unique or anything in the game of baseball, just not a guy at age 32 that should get a 7-year deal that sets him for life.

What happened to "dead ass team" Bob the Cub critic? Brenly has really turned into a cheerleader lately. It's almost like someone sat him down and told him to stop scaring fans away. Anyone agree with Bob that "there's a lot of parity" in the National League, everyone has good starting pitching staffs and anybody can beat anybody now? That was the lede prior to today's game.

Well, they have won 8 of 10, right? Should he be extra-critical when they're winning? Just wondering what your protocol is on that.

You actually believe the Cubs are on a par right now with the rest of the NL? Everyone has a good pitching staff and anybody can beat anybody? Am I talking to Tom Ricketts?

Did I say they were on a par with anyone? I also did not say anything about Ricketts, but of course you did. What I attempted to say was that it's a lot easier to be highly critical when a team is sucking vs. while they're playing better en route to an 8-2 record. Did you ever think that maybe Bob doesn't see a dead-ass team when they're winning? Try to put your stupid Ricketts vendetta aside for once.

No, that's what Brenly said. And that's what I was talking about. You're one sick dude Tito. My bad for even responding to you.

Back at ya, Vendetta Boy. Do you even understand how it's possible Brenly doesn't view the team the same way when they're doing better than they were when he made that comment? I'm glad you're not going to respond to the question.

Yeah, Tito, you sick freak. How dare you suggest that Brenly noticed the starting pitchers pitching well and the hitters actually hitting.

from gammons, alt title, "The Secret To Jim Hendry's Success" A very wise GM says "the key to success isn't managing who's below you, but managing who's above you." And how does Selig manage the owners?

Hendry is a master at this. What a salesman! The whole refrigerators to Eskimos thing...

the logistics of it aside, I can't tell you how happy I am that Cubs ended up with Byrd instead of Granderson

Was this sarcasm Rob? My filters are blocked...

of course... I wanted Peavy too and glad that didn't work out, but while everyone was mentioning that Granderson can't hit lefties I was happy to try and get an under 30 that can legitimately play CF and has the approach I like. But tale as old as time, Yanks and Red Sox and seemingly now the Phillies seem to always know when to pull the trigger and get the elite talent, while the Cubs seem to settle for the good talent or misidentify the elite talent (Soriano). Obviously Hendry has had some hits along the way, but a little too few and far between lately. -edit- I never care to be one of those guys that is just "I just told you so", cause I've had plenty of misses in my illustrious internet career (marcus giles comes to mind), but when there is a guy that you like and it ends up working out for another team, it's natural to be annoyed I think. just venting after Granderson hits another one...

I love the fact that Granderson was a UIC product, and a TF South grad...but the Cubs didn't think he was good enough to draft in the first couple rounds in 2002. No, the Cubs drafted: Bobby Brownlie Luke Hagerty Chadd Blasko Matt Clanton Brian Dopirak Justin Jones Ugh...

Baseball America is still cleaning up the jizz spot on their pants after that draft.

It's safe to say that draft was not fruitful.

Not only did that haul suck. It also marked the end of Hendry/McFail and co. from playing the arbitration-comp picks game. Double fail.

I especially like that Clanton pitched in exactly 2 games over 2 seasons before "retiring" Doing their homework..The Chicago Cubs

I am just surprised we ended up with Garza instead of Jackson. I am sure Hendry will snatch up E Jackson for four solid prospects this off-season. That must be why he keeps getting traded for so much, people know you can get half of the Cubs system for him.

Edwin Jackson is a free agent this offseason.

Well, I've got my "15 Cubs" for the Free Agent Frenzy contest this November figured out. How come Cole Hamels isn't a FA?

because he has a year of club control left. the FA pitching market is m.buerlerelerlurle and cj wilson. this is part of why the cubs targeted a pitcher with club control when making a trade this offseason.

Has there been any trade speculation about Aram now that his family has up and left back to the DR? I feel like that was what was keeping him primarily from approving a trade...

8 out of 10 is probably keeping him from approving a trade now.

Soriano with a triple? outfielders must have collided.

heh, close. Werth with a half-ass dive and misses it and it rolls a bit to right center before Ankiel gets there. Campana would have rounded the bases twice. :)

Veteran RHP Dave Bush opts out of his Class AAA Iowa contract. #Cubs


The last six half innings of the game have ended with a strikeout... sort of like Leslie Nielsen is the ump.

pretty sure Trevor Gretzky is a Cub

Our long national nightmare is over.

$375K according to Callis $100K more than the 5th rounder...

Good god, that must have been the greatest BP session of all time.

Bizarre...glad we signed him, hope we didn't drain budget from signing Baez, V-Bomb, Maples, Dunston and/or Jacquez.

40 BB's in 64 IP for Shark Face entering today.

At least he's missing some bats this year. I had begun to think he was another Berg. He's fifth on the team in innings pitched.

4 minor leaguers suspended by MLB, including #Twins 1B Kennys Vargas (E-town), #Astros' Euris Quezada, #Cubs Double-A C Luis Flores ...

shame...flores is a decent D catcher who's bat showed a little life this year...good enough replacement for wellington in AAA once he moves up.

struck out 8 straight

Marmol implosion warning... BB and a single to start off the 9th

and another BB

and then a K and an infield single... 4-3 Cubs

and another K this would be fascinating and fun if anyone cared.

and Ankiel flies out to end it, impressive.

How deep was Ankiel's flyout?

we'll have plenty of chances to see him fly out next season as the cubs RF'r. =p

just saw replay...caught about 10ft-ish from the wall in CF.

9 of 11. Time for Bob to rip 'em a new one?

Name the two MLB teams with three 20 plus HR hitters and what do they have in common?

O's was a tough one, but fwiw, a bunch of teams have players that are one or two HR's shy from matching that criteria that it's a bit arbitrary.

They both suck!

Jackson, their first-round pick in 2009, must be added to the 40-man roster and protected from the Rule 5 draft if the Cubs promote him when rosters expand in September. He requires no such protection through the winter if they don’t bring him up. --- Me no like this article by Wittenmeyer... --- “Everybody woke up and started hitting the ball better and realized how good we are,’’ Soriano said. “It’s getting too late, but it’s good we realize how good we are .  .  . because [it gives] more confidence for next year.’’

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  • Arizona Phil 4 hours 3 min ago (view)

    jdrnym: That's correct.

    Under the new rules, the 38-man AAA reserve list is now only used beginning on the date reserve lists are filed in November and extending up through the conclusion of the Rule 5 Draft. Then after the conclusion of the Rule 5 Draft, everybody goes back into the off-season 190-man Domestic Reserve List hopper. 


  • jdrnym 7 hours 11 min ago (view)

    Phil, can you settle a Twitter discussion? A team can only select players in the minor league phase of the Rule 5 Draft until its 38-man Triple-A reserve list is full, correct? Don't believe this changed with the latest Major League Rules that introduced the Domestic Reserve List and eliminated individual level reserve lists during the offseason.


  • crunch 11 hours 23 min ago (view)

    "Mark Berman of FOX 26 in Houston reports that Carlos Correa's agent has been contacted by the Astros, Yankees, Red Sox, Dodgers, Cubs and Braves.

    It's not clear when the contact took place or what level of interest each club has."

    ...with the yanks and dodgers both with piles of cash and a bit of need, i wouldn't get too stoked...but at least there seems to be some interest in what his market is.


  • Arizona Phil 15 hours 43 min ago (view)

    Stroman's salary escalators apply to 2024, so if Stroman reaches 160 IP in either 2022 or 2023 (but not both) it adds $2M to his 2024 salary, and if he reaches 160 IP in both 2022 and 2023 it would add $4M to his to 2024 salary.

    So he gets $25M in both 2022 and 2023 (that's locked-in), and then either $21M, $23M , or $25M in 2024, depending upon whether he reaches his salary escalators in 2022 and/or 2023. 


  • Arizona Phil 15 hours 49 min ago (view)

    W-RAT: I should also mention that the Cubs cannot outright David Bote while he is injured or rehabbing from an injury, except during a window starting on the day after the conclusion of the MLB regular season up until the day that off-season reserve lists must be filed (normaly 11/20, but it was 11/19 in 2021 because 11/20 fell on a Saturday, and it will be 11/18 in 2022 because 11/20 will fall on a Sunday). 


  • Arizona Phil 16 hours 4 min ago (view)

    W-RAT: The Cubs can outright David Bote (if he is not claimed off waivers) once the transaction freeze is lifted. That's not a problem. 

    If he is outrighted and then elects free-agency, he would forfeit what remains of his contract - AS LONG AS - the contract is not fully guaranteed. 

    If the contract is fully guaranteed he would likely elect free-agency and the Cubs would be on the hook for what remains of his salary, offset by the MLB minimum salary if he were to sign an MLB deal with another club.


  • crunch 20 hours 21 min ago (view)

    kristin call has been named GM of the Myrtle Beach Pelicans.  she's been the assistant/associate GM for a few years and was formally a marketing director for the team.

    she's been involved in baseball for a living for 16+ years.


  • Wrigley Rat 1 day 2 hours ago (view)

    Hey Phil - Could David Bote be outrighted at any point before the start of the season (obviously not now while players are being locked out). I wonder because if someone claimed him, oh well. If he elected free agency, wouldn't that void his contract? These are the thoughts going through my head as I look to open up another 40-man spot, and Bote will be out until at least May.

    I've read your 40-man tag for him, but I'm not quite smart enough to figure this out! :) Thanks!


  • crunch 1 day 7 hours ago (view)

    Jeff Passan @JeffPassan
    Marcus Stroman signed a three-year, $71 million contract with the Chicago Cubs that includes an opt out after the second season, sources tell ESPN. He’ll make $25 million in 2022, $25 million in 2023 and $21 million in 2024. It includes $2M escalators for 160 IP in ‘22 and ‘23.


  • Arizona Phil 1 day 11 hours ago (view)

    The Cubs have re-signed RHRP Jonathan Holder and C-INF P.J. Higgins to 2022 minor league contracts, presumably with an NRI to MLB Spring Training. 

    They will be Rule 5 Draft-eligible, if and when there is a Rule 5 Draft. 


  • Dolorous Jon Lester 1 day 19 hours ago (view)

    Owners' stooge Bobby Manfred coming out swinging at the players with his statement about the owners instituting a lockout.


  • Arizona Phil 2 days 1 hour ago (view)

    The Cubs re-signed OF Michael Hermosillo to a 2022 Major League contract just prior to the midnight Wednesday MLB transaction freeze. 

    Hermosillo was non-tendered on Tuesday because he was a Rule 5 Draft-Excluded Player, and if he had remained on the 40 the Cubs would not have been able to outright him to the minors any earlier than 20 days prior to MLB opening Day. 


  • crunch 2 days 6 hours ago (view)

    we shouldn't, especially with how much payroll room for 2024+ this top-costing-for-fans team with a heavily monitized ballpark in a major media market has.

    backloaded contracts aren't exactly groundbreaking new things...neither are cheap-ass owners.  i don't expect them to compete every year, but i expect them to try after a punt season where they traded away the core.  NYY, NYM, LAD, LAA, BOS, etc. don't seem to have trouble doing this even if it means throwing a bit of money around...


  • Sonicwind75 2 days 6 hours ago (view)

    Stroman, a pleasant surprise.  Good to know we aren't completely punting until 2025.



  • Arizona Phil 2 days 6 hours ago (view)

    CRUNCH: Clint Frazier's 2022 base salary is only $1.5M and he has a minor league option available, so I think it's more likely than not that he opens 2022 at AAA. 

    On the other hand, Harold Ramirez is out of minor league options, and it is unknown at this point what he will get in 2022 as a "super two." 


  • crunch 2 days 7 hours ago (view)

    until clint fraizer came on board i wouldn't have counted bryant out.

    OF is kinda crowded right now, though there's no stars in the mix.  fraizer - happ - ortega - heyward - h.ramirez leading the group...  even if he split time between OF/3rd with wisdom that just makes it more crowded, plus the team allegedly wants hoerner to prepare to be used as a super-utility guy.