The Winter Meetings officially begin on Monday … but the GMs and all of the decision makers throughout the league are in Indianapolis. The next four to five days figure to be full of rumors … and hopefully moves for the Chicago Cubs.
Reportedly the Cubs remain focused on moving Milton Bradley during the meetings … and despite Internet rumors on Saturday night, Bradley is still on the Cubs roster.
Here are a few updates on the eve of the annual gathering in Major League Baseball.
Jon Heyman pretty much shot down the tweet from Will Carroll on Saturday night that indicated a trade that included Milton Bradley had been “imminent for about 72 hours.” Heyman reported the Cubs “are still not close to dealing” Bradley.
Heyman reported the Cubs are “offering to include only about $5 million to offset the $21 million left on Bradley’s deal.”
Heyman mentioned the rumored “three-way deal” that would include Pat Burrell and Luis Castillo … but including Castillo has not brought the sides any closer.
The other problem with Bradley according to Heyman, is Bradley did not hit last season.
The Rays remain the front-runner to be the destination for Milton Bradley according to multiple reports. The Rangers are still interested according to Ken Rosenthal but the Cubs are not willing to include enough money to trade him to Texas. Rosenthal mentioned the possibility of Kevin Millwood being the player that would come back to the Cubs for Bradley.
Rafael Soriano and Mike Gonzalez
According to a report from Jerry Crasnick on ESPN.com, the Cubs are one of several teams that “are believed to have interest” in Rafael Soriano and Mike Gonzalez. The Braves offered both relievers arbitration … and both are Type-A free agents.
The Cubs are rumored to have interest in adding a veteran reliever that can close games … just in case Carlos Marmol cannot get the job done next season.
Hot Stove Rumors and Notes
- Rick Ankiel is not high on the Cubs list according to Bruce Miles.
- With the Cubs looking for a right-handed platoon partner for Kosuke Fukudome, the lefty David DeJesus does not fit the Cubs needs according to Bruce Miles.
- Jim Hendry feels the team does not need to add a starter according to Bruce Miles … despite being without Ted Lilly to being the year.
- The Cubs could add a centerfielder via a trade … or signing Mike Cameron or Marlon Byrd.
- Speaking of Mike Cameron, the Tribune reported Cameron could be a leader in the clubhouse like Eric Karros in 2003 and Cliff Floyd was in 2007.
- The Cubs are looking for a left-handed second baseman to platoon with Jeff Baker according to a report in the Tribune. Isn’t that Mike Fontenot?
- In non-Cub news, the Pirates are concerned about Ronny Cedeno’s mental mistakes.
- Lou Piniella would “like to add a middle-of-the-rotation starter” according to a report from the Sun-Times … but that does not appear in the cards right now.
- Lou Piniella is expecting to meet with Mike Cameron’s agent during the meetings.
- Keith Law liked the Jake Fox trade for the Cubs.
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ChicagoCubsOnline will have full recaps and updates during the winter meetings. If the Cubs make a move, the CCO will post it. If the Cubs are rumored to be making a move, the CCO will post it … so check back early and often to discuss all of the moves at Baseball’s Winter Meetings here at the CCO.
Well, that’s the latest … and I’m sticking to it!