Walking in a Winter Wonderland

Updated 9:34am C.T. with Info on a Possible 3-Team Deal

Day one at the Winter Meetings in Orlando was rather slow until late in the day when free agents started coming off of the board. A report on CBS SportsLine indicated early on Monday the Cubs had agreed to a deal with Ted Lilly, the report turned out to be false and of this writing nothing official had been announced. A report later in the evening from CBS SportsLine did provide a little more information, including confirmation from Jim Hendry, for the first time, the Cubs have offered a contract to Ted Lilly.

According to a report by Phil Rogers, Ryne Sandberg will be named coach of the Peoria Chiefs (A) on Tuesday. This is great news for an entire generation of the Cubs Faithful and he should work his way through the system as a manager the same way he did as a player.

Here is the rest from day one at Disneyland….

Jacque Jones…. According to several reports, including one by Paul Sullivan in the Chicago Tribune, the Cubs attempt to trade Jones may be in part to the treatment he received by the fans at Wrigley last year, his first of three with the Cubs. The Giants and Orioles have inquired about Jones.

Eric Patterson and Felix Pie…. Both Patterson and Pie could compete for the starting spot in centerfield if the Cubs cannot land a proven centerfielder according to Paul Sullivan.

Ted Lilly…. The Cubs are pursuing the lefty there is not a doubt after Monday. According to a report on CBS SportsLine from Scott Miller there was a strong rumor that Lilly had agreed to a 4-year, $40 million dollar deal on Monday, as mentioned, those reports were not true….but this time Hendry did not deny the report of the offer.

[CBS SportsLine] “I made an offer, but we’re still waiting,” Jim Hendry said.

Toronto thinks they can still resign Lilly before he leaves for the free agent payday, something Lilly’s agent, Larry O’Brien, seems to be gearing up for. A report by Paul Sullivan on Monday night indicated the Cubs are one of three finalists to give Lilly a 4-year, $40 million dollar contract. O’Brien is scheduled to meet with Jim Hendry on Tuesday and the Giants and Yankees on Tuesday as well.

[Chicago Tribune] Hendry said on Monday, “It’s imperative we get one [starter] at least. In a perfect world I can paint a scenario where it would be very good to get two if it was from a group that we would prefer….We wouldn’t rule out the possibility of Neal starting.”

Gil Meche…. Meche is still on the Cubs’ radar and according to Paul Sullivan they are on the top of his list. A reunion with Lou Piniella must be intriguing to Meche. According to a report on Yahoo Sports, the Blue Jays, Mariners, Orioles and Giants are also interested in Meche.

Jason Jennings…. Is still on the Cubs radar and they are continuing to talk to the Rockies about trading for him.

Jason Schmidt…. According to a report by Dick van Dyck in the Tribune, the scouts like Schmidt over Barry Zito. CBS SportsLine mentioned, “the Cubs are deep into discussion with several free agent pitchers, including Ted Lilly and Jason Schmidt.”

Set Rate?…. The Rangers agreed to terms with their own free agent on Monday, Vicente Padilla. Padilla signed a 3-year, $34 million dollar deal. Some feel that between Padilla’s contract and the contract Adam Eaton signed last week (3 years, $24.5 million) that the per year dollar amounts for pitchers viewed as 2nd tier pitchers has been set. According to a report by Jason Stark, Ted Lilly and Gil Meche are both looking for a $10 million dollar a year contract and at least 4 years.

Winter Meeting Rumblings…. According to the report on CBS SportsLine, the Reds and Padres discussed a deal that would send Adam Dunn to the Padres. The Reds have apparently asked about Scott Linebrink and the Padres are interested in Ryan Freel.

Greg Maddux…. According to a report from Ken Rosenthal, the Padres are close to signing Maddux, a report that was echoed on CBS SportsLine.

Julio Lugo…. Lugo appears to still be in the mix but many have begun to think he will end up in Boston.

Winter Meeting Signings….

The Cardinals extended the contract of Chris Carpenter on Monday. Carpenter received a 5-year, $65 million dollar extension.

The Giants signed Bengie Molina to a 3-year deal on Monday depending the results of a physical.

Other News from Day One….

The St. Louis Cardinals and Cleveland Indians will play an exhibition game in Memphis, Tennessee on March 31st in tribute to the civil rights movement.

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Well, that’s the news and I’m sticking to it!!!!

Update – According to reports on Rotoworld.com and from the Denver Post, the Rockies, Cubs and Pirates are working on a deal that would land Jason Jennings in Chicago. The Rotoworld report came in early on Tuesday morning and mentions their source as being Steve Phillips from ESPN. The trade would send Jacque Jones (who has requested a trade after Dusty Baker was not retained as manager) and Carlos Marmol (the Denver Post mentions Angel Guzman) to the Rockies, the Rockies would send Jennings to the Cubs and Brad Hawpe to the Pirates and the Pirates would send Paul Maholm to the Rockies.

Will update if any additional information becomes available….

Quote of the Day

"From what we get, we can make a living; what we give, however, makes a life." – Arthur Ashe