Archive - Mar 11, 2008

Gameday Open Thread/ A's @ Cubs

The Cubs , trimming the roster by seven. Pitchers Jeff Samardzija, Ed Campusano, Juan Mateo were sent to the minors and Shingo Takatsu was released. Jake Fox, Luis Figueroa and JD Closser were the position players sent to minor league camp. 

Spring Training Battles: Starting Pitching

The Cubs are a little over two weeks into spring training with about three weeks before Opening Day. It's time to check in on the yearly ritual of spring training battles. What's the fun of spring training without a little competition? The Cubs have a few spots up for grabs and today I'll look at the starting rotation battle between , , and . I won't pretend that has a legitimate chance, although I guess I am pretending that Sean Marshall does.

Unable or unwilling to trade for some of the top notch talent that was moved over the offseason, such as , or ; the Cubs head into 2008 with much of the same talent that was good for the second best ERA among NL starting staffs last year. , and
will anchor the staff, and if Marquis and Marshall win the jobs, you'll have the same starting five that took the mound for the bulk of last season.

That though, appears to be the least likely scenario, as Ryan Dempster is getting his wish to compete for a starting spot and the Cubs signed Lieber on a one year deal. It appears to be a bit of a logjam at the moment, but the bullpen or the trade market can alleviate that "problem" at the end of spring training.

Let's take a look at the strengths and weaknesses of each candidate after the jump...