Cubs News and Rumors after the Holiday Weekend

When will Jim Hendry start making changes to his roster? Hendry is with the team on their final trip of the first half and was on hand at Chase Field with Greg Maddux Monday afternoon.

Lou’s crew put together a solid effort against a struggling Diamondbacks’ team but his roster has shown no signs of being able to win on a consistent basis. After the Cubs latest June swoon they are just 12-21 in their last 33 games … and will enter play Tuesday night 11 games under .500.

With the July 31st trading deadline just 25 days away, here’s and update on Carlos Zambrano and the latest from the mill as it starts to heat up …

Carlos Zambrano

According to a report from ESPN Chicago, Carlos Zambrano “is expected to resume working sometime this week” despite the fact the Cubs are not sure when he will rejoin the team.

Piniella hinted last week that Zambrano would have to go on a rehab assignment before he’s able to return. Once Zambrano is finished with his treatment program it figures to be somewhere around three weeks since he last pitched in a game.

The Cubs are not sure where Zambrano will pitch but they are going to put together a program to get him ready to return.

Mike Fontenot and Ryan Theriot

Buried in a report from Jon Paul Morosi Monday was a tidbit that Mike Fontenot and Ryan Theriot could be possibilities to fill the Tigers need for middle infield depth. Bruce Levine mentioned Theriot, Fontenot and Jeff Baker as possible trade candidates last week. Levine stated the Phillies, Red Sox and Tigers have been scouting the Cubs in recent days.

Morosi said it is “unclear if the Tigers are involved in active discussions” with the Cubs about Theriot or Fontenot.

There has been speculation that Theriot ($2.6 million in 2010) and Fontenot ($1 million in 2010) could be non-tender candidates in the off-season. Both players are in their first year of arbitration eligibility.

Ted Lilly

Most feel the Cubs most valuable trading chip this summer is Ted Lilly … despite his recent outing against the Reds. Lilly is on the final year of the four-year contract he signed with the Cubs in the winter of 2006 … and the Cubs have already paid half of his $12 million salary for this season.

Peter Gammons tweeted the possibility of the Cubs trading Lilly before the deadline then re-signing him over the winter … not the first time that scenario has been mentioned.

The Mets are one of the teams rumored to be interested in acquiring Ted Lilly.

Stay Tuned …

Quote of the Day

"Build up your weaknesses until they become your strong points." – Knute Rockne