Only 2 days after the World Series and the changes are already starting. Let the FREENZY BEGIN! The Cubs announced on Friday the 2006 Options on infielder Todd Walker and pitcher Scott Williamson have been picked up. Jeromy Burnitz’s option for 2006 was bought out and Burnitz filed for free agency.
Walker’s option was for $2.5 million for 2006. Walker should help the Cubs off the bench and this move makes me wonder about Ronny Cedeno. Will Dusty platoon Walker and Cedeno? Are the Cubs still interested in Rafael Furcal? I think they should pass…. Scott Williamson will be back as well and his option will pay him $2 million in 2006. Williamson is coming off of Tommy John surgery and had a promising end of the season.The Cubs are hoping for the same result they got from Ryan Dempster.
Jeromy Burnitz’s option was bought out for $500,000, instead of the $7 million the Cubs would owe him if they picked up the option. Burnitz did a fine job in the transition from Sosa and I wish him the best.
Also, outfielder David Kelton was granted free agency. Kelton hit .283 with 11 homeruns and 67 RBI’s for the Iowa Cubs. Kelton had a strong spring but did not make the big league club. He switched to the OF from 3B during the 2003 season. Kelton was the Cubs top prospect at 3B.
Also in the rumor mill…the Cubs are close to a 2 year, $6 million deal with Glendon Rusch. I have mixed feelings about Rusch. He has been a valuable fill in for the past 2 seasons for Kerry Wood, but Rusch has said he wants to be a starter. If he signs, does he become number 5 or his he packaged and traded?
Also, Johnny Damon filed for free agency on Friday…keep an eye on this one.
This off season is going to be very interesting…stay tuned to Chicago Cubs Online!!