The first three days of Spring Training has been anything but quiet for the Chicago Cubs. The Cubs and WGN Radio announced that Keith Moreland will be in the radio booth for the next three seasons. Moreland is extremely excited about being the Cubs’ new color analyst and teaming up with Pat Hughes.
According to multiple reports, the cover of the Cubs’ 2011 Media Guide features a montage tribute to Ron Santo … another nice move by the Cubs to honor #10.
As for the on the field news, Q’s crew was rather quiet with a couple of exceptions. Mike Quade announced the team would likely break camp with a 12-man pitching staff … with Andrew Cashner either in the rotation or in the pen according to a report from Jon Paul Morosi.
Here’s the update a day before position players report to Fitch Park and two days before the first full squad workout of the spring …
Keith Moreland was on the Afternoon Saloon (ESPN 1000) Wednesday afternoon. Zonk is excited about his new job and cannot wait to get to Arizona. Moreland is supposed to make the trip to Mesa on February 25. His first broadcast with Pat Hughes will be the Cubs’ Cactus League opener on February 27 (against the A’s at HoHoKam Park).
Moreland had a chance to spend a lot of time with the Cubs and WGN during the process.
Zonk said he will be honest during the broadcasts and call the action on the field the way he see it. Moreland explained that he usually says what is on his mind.
Moreland feels it will be a privilege to go to work at Wrigley 81 times a year.
During multiple interviews on Wednesday, Moreland explained that he would be himself and not try to replace Ron Santo. He feels that he has an advantage in calling game with Pat Hughes and Pat will make things easier for him.
FOX Sports’ Jon Paul Morosi was in Mesa on Wednesday and penned a good report about a familiar name … Andrew Cashner.
Morosi spoke with Mark Riggins about Cashner and the Cubs’ new pitching coach sung his praises. Riggins believes Cashner’s future is in the rotation … and he could get the opportunity this season to prove it.
Riggins told Morosi that Cashner’s ability is among the top 10 pitchers that Riggins has ever seen. Riggins really liked what he saw from Cashner as a starter in the minors and he feels it will transfer to the big leagues.
Riggins said, “He has the ability. It’s a matter of harnessing that ability. You want to give him time to get the most out of himself. Hopefully, it’s this year. That’s what we’re hoping for. Obviously, what he did last year is still huge. We know he can do that. We want to try the other avenue and see what becomes of this.”
According to Morosi’s report, Cashner is a lock to make the roster out of camp … either as a starter or as a reliever.
According to a report from the Sun-Times, Welington Castillo finally reported to camp. From the Sun-Times: Catcher Welington Castillo arrived at camp after resolving visa issues — getting a playful smack on the back of the head from Tyler Colvin when they saw each other in the clubhouse for the first time since Castillo’s broken bat head impaled Colvin in Florida last September.
News, Notes and Tweets
- According to multiple reports, Marlon Byrd is not afraid of his association with Victor Conte.
- Angel Guzman is being limited to fastballs and changeups right now from a mound but was able to throw his cutter on flat ground. According to a report from Carrie Muskat, the Cubs are hoping to see Guzman face hitters in mid March.
- The newest Cub, Robert Coello, is expected in camp on Thursday.
- Mike Quade is hoping to find pitchers versatile enough to be stretched out during the spring to pitch in long relief if needed. Jeff Samardzija is among the candidates to fill that role.
- Non-roster invitees Chris Carpenter, Trey McNutt and Jay Jackson will receive a good look from the Major League coaches this spring. Quade said it will be more of an audition “for down the road” than an actual chance to make the team out of camp.
- Kerry Wood gave Andrew Cashner a few pointers according to a report from Boys Of Spring.
- Tim Sheridan posted several photos from Fitch Park on his blog, Boys Of Spring. Click here to check out photos of Fernando Perez, Brett Jackson, Jay Jackson, Kerry Wood, Andrew Cashner and Rudy Jaramillo.
Some pictures are worth more than a thousand words … or $300 million.
According to a report from Chicago Now, the Cubs have the resources and the need, and execs feel they will pursue either Prince Fielder or more likely Pujols. “They’ll give him the A-Rod deal,” one exec opined. “They’ll give him $33 million or $34 million for seven years,” guessed another exec.
Well, there’s the update … and I’m sticking to it.