bradsbeard 3 days 23 hours ago (view)
My read on his throws is they have too much tail from 3B so they get off line by the time they get there. I also got the sense that he tended to rush a longer throw rather than setting his feet and making an accurate throw. When he plays 2B it's a much shorter throw and he seems to be able to take a second to gather himself and then fire it over accurately, but I also think there is less time for the throw to tail coming from 2B. His throws from the OF aren't terribly accurate either from what I can recall. I think it's mostly an arm path issue (which might be exacerbated by bouncing back and forth between OF and IF). I would say keep him on the right side of the IF at 1B or at 2B whenever you can force Nico or Dansby to take a day off.
Arizona Phil 4 days 2 hours ago (view)
Back when Jimmy Piersall was the Cubs Minor League Outfield Coordinator in the 1990's I had a chance to sit with him at an AZ Instructs game at Fitch Park and he told me that when he first came up with the Red Sox they played him at both SS and OF, and he said the biggest adjustment he had to make with his throws when playing shortstop was that he had to aim his throws at the first-baseman's glove (like playing darts), whereas from the outfield he would just throw to the base without hesitation, and not think about hitting the fielder's glove.
The difference in aiming for a fielder's glove rather than throwing to a base would sometimes cause him to think too much and grip the ball too tightly, and so he would make a bad throw. But he almost never made an errant throw from the outfield.
This reminds me of the situation with Christopher Morel. When he doesn't have to be super precise with a throw, his accuracy improves. Which is why most scouts I know project Morel as an outfielder (or because he has fly ball and line drive tracking issues in the outfield, more specifically a left-fielder, where he can play deep and come in rather than go back on balls).
No question Morel has a plus-plus arm (one of the strongest arms in baseball), and so playing him at 1st base or using him as the DH is a waste of one his two plus tools (arm), but the throwing tool only seems to he game-usable if he plays in the outfield (LF), and Ian Happ is firmly ensconced there through 2026.
However, if he can learn to make consistently accurate throws from 3rd base to 1st base, Morel can make use of his plus-arm in games without necessarily having to play in the outfield (LF).
One thing that hurt Morel's development is that he went directly from AA to MLB in 2022 and never really had a chance to master his throwing accuracy prior to getting called up, and then he spent only a month in AAA in 2023 before getting called up in May. He is an example of player who was rushed to the major leagues because of one stand out MLB-ready tool (HR power), with the other tool not yet MLB-ready (or at least game-usable).
So perhaps playing a lot of 3rd base in Winter ball this year will provide Morel the game reps necessary to help him realize his potential as a third-baseman (or at least determine once and for all whether or not he can play the position at the big league level). It sure won't happen if he plays 1st base.
crunch 4 days 19 hours ago (view)
morel still hasn't played any 1st.
20 innings at 3rd (0 errors/8 chances), 14 at SS (2 errors/6 chances), 1 in LF.
all i got is raw stats, no idea how he's looking at 3rd or SS beyond the numbers.
Arizona Phil 5 days 1 hour ago (view)
The Cubs were trying to outright Ryan Jensen to AAA in August when he was claimed off waivers by the Mariners, so it's not like they were trying to jettison him from the organization. Ergo, I think it's quite possible that if Jensen goes back onto Outright Assignment Waivers rather than being traded, that the Cubs very well might put in a claim, and then if they win the claim, keep him on the 40 until whenever his roster slot is needed for a FA, trade acquisition, or waiver claim.
Three attractive things about Ryan Jensen are that (unlike a number of players presently on the Cubs MLB 40-man roster) there are no off-season restrictions on outrighting him to the minors, he cannot elect free agency if he is outighted, and he will not be a minor league 6YFA until post-2025).
As a prospect, Jensen is somewhat comparable to pitchers like Cam Sanders and Riley Thompson, except Jensen (if he is outrighted to AAA) would remain under club control through 2025, whereas C. Sanders and R. Thompson can be minor league free-agents after next season. So Jensen actually has more long-term development value than either Sanders or Thompson.
Given that the Cubs invested $2M in Jensen when they drafted him, and given that there are no restrictions on outrighting him during the off-season, and that given that if he is outrighted he cannot elect free-agency, and given that if he is outrighted he cannot be a minor league FA until post-2025, and given that he is healthy and has a "live" arm, and given that the Cubs presently have three 40-man roster slots open (that is a LOT of givens!), I really can't see any reason for the Cubs not to put in a waiver claim (again, presuming the Mariners don't trade him), and then if they win the claim, wait the required seven days (or longer if they don't need his slot immediately) and then put him back onto waivers again (a player claimed off waivers during the off season cannot be placed back onto waivers again for at least seven days), and if he isn't claimed, outright him to AAA and keep him in the Iowa "inventory" through 2025, and hope that maybe he can harness his control in the meantime. And if he can't, so be it.
crunch 5 days 13 hours ago (view)
mlb revenue estimates are sketchy at best, though a good amount is known. teams don't publicly disclose all their revenue streams and not every outlet that aggregates sources of revenue catch them all.
excluding that, the ricketts family owns a ton of stuff that creates revenue and value surrounding the park, building on the reputation and existence of the team, that has nothing to do with the finances of the team. that said, i'm not sure COVID was fun times for any of that investment.
still, this team is worth about 2-3 billion more than what they paid not even 15 years ago. all that land around the park they bought, similar value realized boat. "value" doesn't pay the bills, but i doubt the ricketts family would need to have outside financing to boost any payroll or luxury tax overrun.
i'm not expecting the cubs to spend like LA or NYC teams. the cubs are in the 3rd largest media market, but the distance between 2 and 3 isn't exactly small. the multi-year punts and cautious re-entry slowness is something i don't like, though.
Bill 5 days 15 hours ago (view)
In 2022, the Yankees had 206 million more dollars of revenue than the Cubs. That means that after all expenses are covered, they could spend an additional 205 million dollars on salaries and still make more profit than the Cubs.
In 2022, the Dodgers had 130 million more dollars of revenue than the Cubs. That means that after all expenses are covered, they could spend an additional 129 million dollars on salaries and still make more profit than the Cubs.
In 2022 the Boston Red Sox had 61 million more dollars of revenue than the Cubs. That means that after allexpenses are covered, they could spend an additional 60 million dollars on salareies and still make more profit than the Cubs. The Cubs have won as many world series as Boston, but it was the Cubs that did it with less resources.
crunch 5 days 18 hours ago (view)
willie hernandez died a couple days ago...a few days after his 69th birthday.
rule 5 pick from philly, turned into a reliever, some good cubs years.
he won CY and MVP in 1984 for DET in the emerging peak era of people realizing bullpen arms can be stars. rollie fingers (1981), willie hernandez (1984), and dennis eckersley (1992) won CY+MVP. jim konstanty was the last reliever before them to win a MVP (1950, no CY award in 1950).
Dolorous Jon Lester 5 days 19 hours ago (view)
What a rough first year to be in charge of the draft. I’d give anyone a pass for that draft tbh. Appreciate the reminder he wasn’t in charge in 2019, I couldn’t recall.
bradsbeard 5 days 21 hours ago (view)
2019 was the last draft before DK. 2020 was the first with DK, and while it’s not going to look pretty when you look at the first three picks, he’s already gotten two guys from that draft to the majors (Mervis and Luke Little) while there have been none from 2019. Decent chance that DJ Herz and Porter Hodge make it eventually though.
Dolorous Jon Lester 5 days 21 hours ago (view)
Was that Kan Dantrovitz’s first Cubs draft? Or the next one?
Still some varying levels of hope for Strumpf, Schlaffer, Clarke, or Hill to carve out a role. Porter Hodge just got added to the 40 man so he might see some MLB time as soon as this year.
But you’re right; trending towards total miss.