The past two Sundays have been big days for Jim Hendry….two weeks ago Hendry resigned Aramis Ramirez and Kerry Wood, last Sunday he made the biggest off-season splash in recent history with the signing of Alfonso Soriano. Does Hendry have anything up his sleeve for today? The Cubs continue to force moves by other teams to get better within the National League Central. The Astros made noise on Friday with the signings of Carlos Lee and Woody Williams….the Brewers struck on Saturday with a little noise of their own when they completed a 6-player deal with the Arizona Diamondbacks.
Here is the rest from around the league and a check-in with the CCO’s favorite off-season grader…. Not much is coming out of the Northside as far as actual news. There were two moves on the 40-man roster, although there has not been an official release from the Cubs, Ryan O’Malley and Miguel Negron were removed from the 40-man roster earlier in the week and the CCO will post the release once the official announcement is made.
Dave Roberts…. According to a report in the San Francisco Chronicle, the Giants are close to signing Dave Roberts to a 3-year contract valued between $5 – $6 million dollars a year. The Giants are also close to signing Rich Aurilia and are talking with Mark Loretta and former Cub, David Weathers. If the Giants do land Roberts the signing would reunite him with new Giants manager Bruce Bochy. The signing would have an effect on the Cubs who have reportedly been looking at Roberts to fill their need for a centerfielder. Several reports have indicated the Cubs lack of interest in Roberts is due to the length of the contract he is looking to sign.
Dayn Perry…. The CCO’s favorite off-season grader has written his recipe for the Cardinals repeating in 2007. But the most interesting part of his article is he feels Gil Meche and Ted Lilly may be on the verge of breakout seasons. According to Perry, Meche has tremendous stuff and Lilly is a less durable and less expensive version of Barry Zito….Perry also mentions Vicente Padilla as a possibility to help the Cardinals staff. While Perry is obviously anti-Cubs, he knows baseball (in this writers humble opinion) and his acknowledgement of Meche and Lilly as being on the rise, if you will, was refreshing to see with both of those pitchers being on the Cubs’ radar. Read into it what you want….
The NL Central…. The Brewers traded Doug Davis, Dana Eveland and Dave Krynzel to the Arizona Diamondbacks for Johnny Estrada, Greg Aquino and Claudio Vargas. Obviously the big names in the deal were Estrada and Davis but now the Brewers have an offensive catcher that can put up numbers similar to that of Michael Barrett.
J.D. Drew…. According to a report in the Boston Herald, the Red Sox continue to be the front-runner to land the services of Mr. Drew but the Orioles are also in the mix.
Well, that’s the latest from around the league….have a great Sunday and get ready for the Winter Meetings that are just over a week away.