The Front Office, Fielder, Marshall, Compensation … and Other Cubs News, Notes and Rumors

The player moves the Cubs are rumored to be working on continued making noise on Tuesday. According to a report late Tuesday night from Ken Rosenthal, the Cubs and Reds are discussing a deal that could send Sean Marshall to Cincinnati for Travis Wood. It is unknown if there are other players involved in the talks. Marshall is under contract through the 2012 season and is one of the Cubs most valuable trading chips.

Theo Epstein has hired two more front office personnel and another could be added soon. The hiring of Matt Dorey as national cross-checker of amateur talent was reported late Monday night. According to a report from WEEI, the Cubs have also hired Kyle Evans, a former pro scout for the Red Sox. The hiring of Evans does not violate the agreement made between the Sox and Cubs that Epstein would not be able to hire anyone else from Boston’s front office for three years … Evans had already left the Red Sox’s organization.

The Cubs are also close to adding Craig Shipley, the former Red Sox VP of international scouting and player personnel. Shipley was one of the first hires Epstein made when he took over in Boston in 2002.

The Cubs also made a change at the minor league level. According to Cubs.com, Brandon Hyde is listed as the Cubs minor league field coordinator replacing Dave Bialas.

The front office additions have not been made official.

As for the compensation package for Theo Epstein that remains unresolved. According to reports from the Chicago media and the Boston media, that issue has been pushed to the backburner and the Cubs are not expected to give up any of their top prospects as compensation for Epstein… and will likely be lower-level prospects. According to ESPN Boston, it would come as a surprise if the Red Sox receive more than a run-of-the-mill prospect or two from the Cubs for Epstein. And the same is expected to be sent to San Diego for Jed Hoyer and Jason McLeod.

On the Prince Fielder front, the reports varied once again from the Cubs having no interest to the Cubs remain the most logical destination for Fielder. But, could the Cubs be interested in a Padres’ first baseman instead of Fielder? And one other than Anthony Rizzo?

Here’s the update …

Prince Fielder
According to a report from Jon Heyman, the Mariners made an offer or at least told Prince Fielder what they would be willing to pay him. Seattle really likes Fielder … likely stemming from their general manager, Jack Zduriencik. Zduriencik drafted Fielder while he was in the Brewers’ organization.

Depending on the time of day, the Cubs are interested in signing Fielder … no the Cubs are not interested in Fielder, there is not enough money. With Darvish off the market and Yoenis Cespedes not yet available, the mainstream media has focused on where Prince Fielder will sign.

Buster Olney reported the Cubs have done some background work on Fielder and they would like to sign him, but only on their terms and not close to the 10-year deal Scott Boras is reportedly seeking for Fielder.

The Cubs remain the most logical destination for Fielder according to Jon Paul Morosi … but there is no indication the Cubs would pay what Boras is asking for. Fielder wants to play first base and not be a DH. Fielder might have to choose between a lesser contract with the Cubs and more money from teams (like the Mariners and Orioles) lower on his wish list according to Morosi.

Speculation is the Prince Fielder sweepstakes will not be settled until after the first of the year.

The Orioles, Rangers, Mariners, Blue Jays, Nationals and Cubs appear to be the teams interested in Fielder … that is before the ‘Mystery Team‘ makes an appearance.

Chattin’ with Bruce Levine
Mr. Talkin’ Baseball held his weekly chat on ESPNChicago.com, here are the highlights:

  • One rumor Bruce Levine has heard: Brett Jackson for Anthony Rizzo. Levine doubts the Cubs would make that deal because they need more outfield help than help at first base.
  • Whether or not the Cubs sign Paul Maholm depends on the direction they decided to take. Levine said the direction seems to change on a weekly basis … trading Garza, keeping Garza, getting Darvish, not getting Darvish. “Part of the topsy turvy world Epstein and Hoyer live in right now.”
  • Levine cautioned not to be so sure that Yonder Alonso is not the player that the Padres would trade and keep Anthony Rizzo.
  • The Padres are not interested in Matt Garza and any deal with the Padres would likely not involve Garza. San Diego is not looking for someone making $10 million.
  • Levine still thinks that Cubs have a great shot at signing Prince Fielder … but at their terms and not his. A four-five year deal for Fielder would make sense for a lot of teams, including the Cubs. The Cubs do not view Fielder as an eight-ten year player.
  • If the Cubs could receive young, high quality pitching back for Sean Marshall he thinks the Cubs should move him.
  • The Cubs game plan was changed significantly by the new CBA. The plan was to strip it down and throw a ton of money at the amateur draft and international players. The game plan is difficult to fathom at this point.
  • The Cubs front office does not know much about Tony Campana right now … other than he is very fast.
  • The Cubs are interested in Yoenis Cespedes and Jorge Soler … and might be more interested in the 19-year old Soler than the 26-year old Cespedes. Soler could have the bigger upside.
  • Alfonso Soriano’s contract looks to be impossible to move. A team like Seattle might be interested for a low amount of money.
  • A lot of teams would like to have Marlon Byrd.
  • In order for the Cubs to sign Coco Crisp, they would have to move Soriano and Byrd at some point. Brett Jackson also needs a spot.
  • It could take sending Andrew Cashner or Trey McNutt to San Diego for Anthony Rizzo … or Junior Lake and a pitcher.
  • Levine thinks the Cubs’ interest in Anthony Rizzo is real. He just doesn’t know if the Cubs have the prospects to make a deal.
  • Jeff Samardzija has been told he will be given a shot to earn a spot in the rotation this spring.
  • Paul Maholm probably fits the Cubs needs more than Tim Wakefield. Levine thinks the Cubs will sign him at some point. Maybe their next move?
  • Theo Epstein and Jed Hoyer were impressed with the Cubs’ draft last June.
  • The Ricketts family purchased the McDonald’s property as a private holding company that’s not associated with the Cubs. The family used separate money and set it up as a LLC (Limited Liability Company).
  • Levine does not see a suitor for Geovany Soto at this point.
  • It is possible the Cubs could re-sign Carlos Pena. Levine indicated Epstein and Hoyer have already talked to Pena. Levine thinks a two-year contract for Pena would not be bad if they cannot trade for Anthony Rizzo or Yonder Alonso.
  • Levine thinks there is a chance Carlos Zambrano could be traded to Miami … and he thinks the Cubs will have more teams, other than just the Marlins, interested in Zambrano.

News, Notes and Rumors

The Cubs are one of the teams that remains interested in Coco Crisp according to Ken Rosenthal.

According to Jim Bowden, the Padres and Rays are not matching up well in a potential trade for Anthony Rizzo. San Diego has been flooded with interest about Rizzo.

Well, there’s the update … and I’m sticking to it.

Follow ChicagoCubsOnline on Twitter: @TheCCO

Quote of the Day

"As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words, but to live by them." - John F. Kennedy

Share on Fancred
  • Ripken Boy

    Don’t bring back Pena, that is a step backwards. Let LaHair play or go get Rizzo.

    Trading Marshall for Travis Wood is also not a great move.

    Not sure which direction this team is going. Trading Marshall tells me they are going young, but trying to keep Pena goes against that.

    Not sure what direction Jed and Theo are going with this team.

    • Joey U

      Lets see what additional prospects are included in the deal.

  • CCUBS29

    MLB trade rumors has the marshall wood trade listed as “close” to a done deal with the Cubs getting wood and two minor leaguers  

  • Kojak Osborne Jr.

    Travis Wood are you kidding me he had one good year and then he got shelled. Marshall was one of our strongest options in the bullpen and I believe that our bullpen is our strength why trade away our strengths. To make things worst they want to trade him inside our division and make a rival better. This tell me if this trade goes down Marmol , Garza , Soto, could be gone soon to.

    • Ripsnorter1

      Did you see that Cashner for Rizzo trade rumor?

      Nuts!

      That means it is likely to happen’

      • Kojak Osborne Jr.

        Yes I do not like trading Cashner but he kind of remind me of Kerry Wood  he look like he will be injury prone so it might not be a bad trade

      • Gary J

        Why is that nuts?
        Granted I like Cashner too, but he had a total of 12 appearances last year – he’s an injury concern.

        For a 22 year old kid that hit .330 with 26 dingers and 100 RBI in AAA last year (and 25 dingers/100 RBI over A+ and AA combined the year before) that was a key part of the A. Gon trade just a year ago?

        That’s something… and you don’t get something for nothing.  

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    The latest on Sean Marshall from last night, early this morning

    http://chicagocubsonline.com/archives/2011/12/cubsrumors12201.php

    I also encourage everyone to watch the twitter feed on the right side of the CCO for updates during the day. If the trade becomes official, I will post it.

  • Tony_Hall

    Once again, when people allow the dust to settle, on actual transactions, the rumors are just that rumors.  Many are made up, by people, speculating.  Some have just a little bit of info and then try to make up the rest.  We all do it, it’s entertaining.

    Just look at the Ricketts buying the McDonalds.  Some people came out and said, there goes our money for Fielder this year, since they paid $20M.  But now that the dust has settled, the Ricketts bought it outside of the Cubs organization.  They didn’t use any of the Cubs revenues to buy it.  They wrote a check, personally and set it up as an LLC.  Now if they were the people who were trying to not spend money, they would have used the Cubs baseball revenue to buy the property, which would have taken away money from Theo’s budget.

    Ricketts has hired Theo to build a winning team for the long haul.  He didn’t do what most owners do, and say win now, here’s the money to go and buy free agents.  He said I want to build a first class organization, that can have sustained success, year after year.  Theo and Jed have told us this as well, but that their job is to be doing that, and field a competitive team at the major league level.  Well the major league team has not been good.  They are old and needing of an overhaul and trying to find a way for this team to be competitive, without adding on long term contracts to 30 somethings, and trading away prospects that are in the plans in the next few years, is difficult.

    He told us this would be a difficult road…”Epstein acknowledged it will take a lot of work. There is a gap between where they are and where the Cubs want to be ”  

    And today will be better than yesterday.

    • Schwimmer

      Amen.  I agree and want to just add to your sentiments.  Because I think many of my fellow CUB fans (on this blog) seem to be looking for THEO to take actions and make trades that are not consistent with what he said he wants to do:  Build a ball club with a great foundation; and, young prospects that can develop the way the organization wants.

      We can all agree that the 2012 CUBS stunk.  Even CASTRO, while a great hitter…needs a lot of help developing into a great “defensive” shortstop. 

      The CUBS need a total “house-cleaning.”  I have never seen a ball club with so many “mediocre” players who have only 1-tool.  You don’t win Pennants (let alone a World Series) by fielding that type of team.  Enough already.

      It appears that THEO & Company are taking more of a “Billy Beane” approach of bringing in young prospects and players who have had down years — and, have great upside potential.  That includes trading players with a “high trade value.”

      And, they seems to want to trade any player that can bring them some great young prospects — like MARSHALL.

      I think that’s a great idea to trade MARSHALL who will be quite costly after this year.  And, who cares if it is to a team “within the division!”

      You do a trade because it benefits YOU.  You don’t “pass on the trade” because it might benefit the other team.  The litmus test on that trade is:  Do the CUBS benefit from it?

      Lastly, they are smart enough (esp. having wasted money on the likes of CRAWFORD and LACKEY) to realize that 7+ year contracts, generally, don’t work out.  

      That’s why I am so happy that they’ve drawn a line in the sand re:  Mr. FIELDER.  Let’s see if he prefers playing in a shorter contract with the CUBS than a long-term contract in Baltimore or Seattle, etc?

      Remember:  The CUBS have tried the other approach over the past years of spending lots of money on a bunch of expensive F.A.    It didn’t work.

      I am totally open and excited by the new approach that THEO & Company wants to take with the CUBS.

      • Steve_RocVegas

        Amen to both Tony and Schwimmer.  Even thought I also am getting impatient wanting to see something “HUGE” happen, Theo and Co are absolutely taking the sure and steady approach, which is what we NEED finally.  I for one loved when JH made a big splash signing, and we now know how quickly that excitement wears off in failure. I’m finally willing to wait and be patient for someone who has proven they know what theyre doing and are planning for sustained success where year in year out we get excited about the upcoming season.  As it stood the last two years, my excitement for the new season was gone by the end of April and it was summers without MLB baseball.  Thank you TR and fam for being smarter then the next guy, or last guys :), and Thank you Theo and Co. for coming and saving us from JH HELL. 
         

      • RynoTiger

        Actually I disagree with you on this comment:
        “You don’t pass on the trade because it might benefit the other team.”  Sometimes you might, especially if it’s a team within your own division.  You might look for something outside of your division that will work just as good so you’re not helping a team you have to beat out.

        • John_CC

          I agree, Ryno, the concept is sound. You wouldn’t want to trade a young difference-maker within your division, a player that would punish your team for years to come. Sean Marshall is not a difference maker. He is a solid middle reliever, which is a crucial piece to a winning team, but not a difference maker.

      • cubtex

        Theo signed Crawford less than a year ago to that ridiculous contract. Did he take an internet course in “how not to sign players to dumb contracts” within the last year that I didn’t hear about?

        • Tony_Hall

          He was in a different situation, looking to add the final pieces to a team versus having almost no pieces to start.  He also wasn’t in charge completely, and could have been against the signing and overruled by Henry or Lucchino.

    • Coachdon

      The problem is that when the dust does settle, the actual trade ends up even worse than the rumor…

      • Tony_Hall

        Not all trades work out for both sides and they take years to know who really won the trade.  But then again, it is more fun to proclaim a winner of a trade as soon as the trade happens, forget that they actually need to perform in the future to make the trade good for either side.

  • cubs1967

    wood for marshall is crap.
    wood is not “considered” quality, young pitching as levine mentioned from neil’s notes.
    if the goal is to completely blow up this team……….good luck on drawing any fans.  no guarantee it works.  any guesses in 4 yrs if no playoffs (and blowing up the team will do that), cubs attendance–say 2M.  not to mention ricketts and theo will be hated.

    103 yrs boys………….think about that before you trade the best LH RP for wood…..er balsa wood at that.

    do the reds have any prospects??……..

  • cubs1967

    Devin Mesoraco, c2.Billy Hamilton, ss3.Yonder Alonso, 1b/of4.Yasmani Grandal, c5.Zack Cozart, ss6.Daniel Corcino, rhp7.Robert Stephenson, rhp8.DiDi Gregorius, ss9.Todd Frazier, 3b/1b/of10.Brad Boxberger, rhpBESTTOOLSBest Hitter for AverageYonder AlonsoBest Power HitterNeftali SotoBest Strike-Zone DisciplineYonder AlonsoFastest BaserunnerBilly HamiltonBest AthleteBilly HamiltonBest FastballDaniel CorcinoBest CurveballJ.C. SulbaranBest SliderTim CrabbeBest ChangeupDaniel RenkenBest ControlJustice FrenchBest Defensive CatcherTucker BarnhartBest Defensive InfielderDidi GregoriusBest Infield ArmDidi GregoriusBest Defensive OutfielderRyan LaMarreBest Outfield ArmYorman RodriguezPROJECTED 2015 LINEUPCatcherDevin MesoracoFirst BaseJoey VottoSecond BaseBilly HamiltonThird BaseTodd FrazierShortstopZack CozartLeft FieldYonder AlonsoCenter FieldDrew StubbsRight FieldJay BruceNo. 1 StarterJohnny CuetoNo. 2 StarterAroldis ChapmanNo. 3 StarterHomer BaileyNo. 4 StarterDaniel CorcinoNo. 5 StarterMike LeakeCloserBrad BoxbergerTOP PROSPECTSOF THE DECADEYearPlayer, Position2011 Org.2002Austin Kearns, ofIndians2003Chris Gruler, rhpOut of baseball2004Ryan Wagner, rhpOut of baseball2005Homer Bailey, rhpReds2006Homer Bailey, rhpReds 2007Homer Bailey, rhpReds2008Jay Bruce, ofReds2009Yonder Alonso, 1bReds2010Todd Frazier, 3b/ofReds2011Aroldis Chapman, lhpRedsTOP DRAFT PICKSOF THE DECADEYearPlayer, Position2011 Org.2002Chris Gruler, rhpOut of baseball2003Ryan Wagner, rhpOut of baseball2004Homer Bailey, rhpReds2005Jay Bruce, ofReds2006Drew Stubbs, ofReds2007Devin Mesoraco, cReds2008Yonder Alonso, 1bReds2009Mike Leake, rhpReds2010Yasmani Grandal, cReds2011Robert Stephenson, rhpRedsLARGEST BONUSESIN CLUB HISTORYAroldis Chapman, 2010$16,250,000Chris Gruler, 2002$2,500,000Yorman Rodriguez, 2008$2,500,000Homer Bailey, 2004$2,300,000Mike Leake, 2009$2,270,000REDSLINKSReds Team PageReds Top 10 Scouting Reports  Last Year’s Reds Top 10 Prospects2011 Draft: Reds (Basic Database)2011 Draft: Reds  (Advanced Database)2011 Draft Report Cards: Cincinnati Reds  Complete Index of Top 10 ProspectsPre-Order the 2012 Prospect Handbook

    In 2010, the Reds took advantage of one of the weakest divisions in baseball to earn their first playoff appearance in 15 years. But after an offseason in which it stood pat and their two top competitors improved, Cincinnati found itself back in a familiar

    here’s the reds prospects from BA.

    sorry the paste is long.

    Mesorarco won’t get traded.
    Alonso, Grandal, Box have already gone to SD.

    Frazier sucks, we’ve seen him.

    Why would we need Hamilton or Cozart or Grtegorius.

    SO really, Corcino, P, Stephenson only 2 pitchers on list.

    Any ideas anyone??

    • Tony_Hall

      Talk about a needle in the haystack…

      I’m sure glad we have a bunch of suits, to review other teams farm systems, so that we don’t have to pick out the prospects.  

      IF a trade is made, then I’ll look at who we get back, otherwise, I have a hard enough time keeping up with who we have at AA and AAA and keeping an eye on A and our recent draft picks.

      • Texcubnut

        Tony, that’s why Tom U. and his reports are so valuable. I can’ t keep up with all of it.

    • daverj

      If I can get Wood, Corcino and either Frazier, Francisco or Stephenson for Marshall, I make that deal every day of the week.

      Frazier sucks? If he were a Cub, Cub fans would be touting him as some core piece of the future that could only be traded for an ace pitcher or middle of the order bat.

  • Tony_Hall

    Soriano is still a Cub, and it is not because anyone would have to break the bank to trade for him, it’s because everyone has other options still available.  

    Take for example Rodrigo Lopez.  No one wants to see him in our rotation, but as rotational depth (hopefully 8, 9, 10 or lower) he is a guy teams would like to have at AAA.  I have no doubt the Cubs offered him a minor league contract and probably did, at the beginning of free agency.  So why has he not signed the minor league contract…what is taking so long…he is trying to get a major league contract.  Once he has exhausted all of his options to get one, maybe even Japan, he will then sort through his minor league contract offers and which one gives him the best chance to make it to the majors.

    Many teams know what the trade parameters will be for Soriano.  Cubs are willing to pay $45M of the $54M owed to him.  They know about what type of throw in prospects to give back.  They just don’t want to commit, $9M over 3 years, if they can do it for 1 year and around the same, per year.

    This is what keeps the logjam going and why so many deals end up getting done in January or even early February.  It’s not that they haven’t discussed trade, FA, etc, with the agents and other teams, it’s that teams try to exhaust their options, before taking on the aging vets, the Cubs are peddling.

    • Patrick_Schaefer

      Great insight tony well put.

    • Schwimmer

      Another point to be made about SORIANO is:  If the CUBS cannot get any return for him…should he be kept as a pinch-hitter?

      ERIC HINSKE gets $1.35m from ATLANTA, et.al.

      A good pinch-hitter is worth close to $2.0m

      What do you all think about that idea?

      Also…I have a question:

      When ATLANTA made a bad contract with ANDREW JONES…didn’t they work out a deal where they were able to “re-structure” his contract financially…in return for sending to a team where he could play regularly????

      Does anyone remember the details of how that deal worked?

      And, is it possible that the CUBS could do something similar with SORIANO.  Because if the CUBS told him…”Hey, Dude, you are going to be riding the bench” — I really think he would be very open to re-structuring his contract in a way like ANDREW JONES did.  (And, in a way that would not be a problem for the Baseball Union).

      What say you all about this idea???

      • Schwimmer

        I had the wrong team for ANDRUW JONES.  It was the DODGERS that had that awful contract with him.

        And, since he was doing so badly….and, he was unhappy, too — they got very creative in re-structuring his contract…so that it was “win-win” for both of them.

        Couldn’t be done with SORIANO, too???

      • Tony_Hall

        Sorry, hate the idea of Soriano as a pinch hitter.

        He gets the majority of his stats off of the back of the rotation type pitchers and middle relief.  He is not good against the upper echelon right handed pitchers, and as a pinch hitter, that is all he would face.

        Now as an extra OF that plays against lefties, maybe, but not many teams can afford a roster spot for that type of player, unless he is a late inning glove and/or pinch hitting candidate.

        Any trade should include a restructuring of his payments.

        • Anthony

          can he be sold to Nippon?

  • Lilang123

    You have to trade soriano, because I kno for sure I don’t want him as castros mentor

  • Tony_Hall

    Levine does not see a suitor for Geovany Soto at this point.
    Hard to believe a stud catcher like this, wouldn’t  have teams lined up for him.  Some on here have tried to say he is a middle of the order bat, if this was true, the teams would be all over the Cubs to try and trade for Soto.

    This is just another example of the state of the Cubs.  We have players who are not worth much in trade.  We missed their window; Soto should have been traded when he didn’t cost $4M+, then we would have received a good return.  

    Sell High, Buy Low is hard to do, because fans won’t agree with the moves.  

    Fans want the big free agent signings, and trading the no names, or fall out of favor trades for top names already in the game.

    Unfortunately, 5 years from now, the top names in the game, many aren’t even on major league teams, and many are not even drafted yet.  The teams that can find the best talent and develop the talent the best, will be the teams that succeed with the new CBA.  

    • Anthony

      good post Tony,

      building an organization from the ground up from a business standpoint simply means making it more valuable, increase assets.

      in a baseball sense, prospect development can provide player pipeline to the big club, or as tradeable commodities to another club to fill positions of need.

      that is why all minor league players in affiliated baseball are constantly auditioning for all 30 teams, hoping to either be a fit for their original signing org or a club needing them.

      the higher up a player is in the system that is producing at a reasonable level while also possessing additional room for improvement, the more value

      older players stuck at AA/AAA are mostly “are what they are” players, entrenched in their ways, basically at their ceilings

      notice how the Iowa roster, from a positional standpoint, went through some normal attrition recently, and if Theo does what he stated, look for more changes

      when Theo is finished with the Hot Stove period, which will probably include MLB trades, minor league trades, releases, and signings, add players 26-40 from the 40 man to Iowa and then you get a better picture of State of worth at that level.

      The younger guys are going to start pushing themselves upwards, as they do every year in hopes of achieving AA status. This push will force many older players to AA status by age/experience, and not necessarily upside. This where it is possible Theo may cut bait, or at least make profound changes.

      Theo states he doesn’t believe in the AAAA player. What that means is that he has goal of making AAA of the quality that has MLB fill-ins, tradeable assets, and next-in-waiting guys, and that takes time.

      • Tony_Hall

        JH used AAA as a place to stash failed players at the major league level, and older prospects, who have had a cup of coffee.  

        I belive Theo and Jed will stretch the system out more and use AAA for more of their top prospects.  It will still be the place you put the Rodrigo Lopez’s of the world to stash them for an emergency on an emergency fill in player.

  • Spoda17

    Hello all.

    Tony, Anthony, awesome incite as always.  I can only add my additions to your thoughts,

    As we all sit here and comment and get caught up with the flavor of the day… Darvish, Fielder, Soriano, Marshal, why haven’t we signed Wood yet..? and so on… as well as reporters commenting on how the Cubs keep changing their plans… and no one knows what direction we are going… to be competitive, or rebuild, or both, or neither…

    Yada, yada, yada…

    What people are missing is that in reality, Theo and company have not changed their direction at all.  The bloggers, and the sports media, keep changing the direction of the Cubs… Theo and company have not changed their direction one bit… we have no idea what the specifics of their plan is; but yet a lot of people get mad because they keep “changing” their minds.

    They haven’t changed their plans at all.  I am positive they have mapped out exactly what they are trying to do.  Yes, I’m sure they have to adjust as players move and sign with other clubs… but the overall plan I’m am confident is on track.  We know they are building a foundation, they have said that all along.

    So, as many of us always seem to add to all of our posts, and I love the banter and ranting and raving, so I am not suggesting to change that at all… but I must say patience… patience… patience…

    I strongly feel we will put a team on the field next year that is better than this past year; just having Svuem is going to give us a better team.

    So keep up the banter, and keep sharing opinions, but also keep in the back of your minds… Everything is going to be okay…

    • Anthony

      spoda, I am more interested in how the Farm shakes out versus what the 2012 product is in a transitional season

      the Farm stalled prior to 2011, from AAA on downward

      the great 2011 draft, and the new regime, and these players ready for their first full season will be a great follow

  • notcubbiewubbie

    please please please dont bring back pena;big time step in the wrong direction.  go out and get fielder rizzo or alonso; get rid of all jim hendry’s losers.

  • Tony_Hall

    Decided to look up some Reds blogs and amazingly their fans are complaining about Reds trade rumors.

    They can’t believe they would have to give up Travis Wood and any prospects of any value to get 1 year of Sean Marshall, let alone give up a higher level prospect.

    Kind of explains why trades are so hard, the other side looks at it from their perspective.

    • daverj

      I usually think if both team’s fans are upset about a deal, then it was probably a fair deal.  If a team’s fans are happy about a deal, then it was probably a steal.

      The proposed deals Cub fans think are fair are probably the starting point for negotiations from the Cubs side and vice versa for the other team. The fair deal is somewhere in the middle.

    • Coolpdxcubsfan

      The problem with that theory is that Wood sucks and Marshall is awesome. I would make this trade with the provision that the Reds have to give us some more prospects but the main part of the trade is that they have to keep Dusty.

  • Tony_Hall

    Also the headline on the Reds blog was 

    “Reds close to saving Sean Marshall”

    Ouch!!  This is the Reds franchise, not the Cardinals, not the Yankees, or Red Sox, the Reds.

  • Tony_Hall

    Here is an excerpt from a Reds Blog

    “That also leads into the couple of negatives about such a deal. Marshall’s aforementioned $3.1m contract takes him only through 2012 and he would be a free agent for the 2013 season. The way this deal makes the most sense is if the Reds are confident in a trade-and-sign proposition and they can get Marshall locked up for 2 to 3 years. Most relievers have a notoriously short shelf life, so signing him longer than that would be somewhat risky, but if you don’t get a least two years of service for giving up a starting pitcher and some prospects, you lose a lot of the value in what you hoped to obtain.
    Even a starting pitcher as unproven as Travis Wood, who has looked phenomenal in some starts and mediocre in others, is a hard thing to give up for a reliever, certainly from just a player-worth standpoint.”

  • cubtex

    RIP

    This is to follow up on your post from yesterday. No….you don’t quit before the season starts and if you have heard what I have said for months…this is the NL Central where you can go from worst to first.

    But…..Actions speak louder than words.

    LOOK..at what Theo has done and is doing this offseason.

    Do you think they are going for it? David DeJesus to start in RF? Ian Stewart to start at 3B?

    If this rumor trade goes thru….they are trading a very good relief pitcher to a contending team in their own division for a pitcher who couldn’t even make their rotation…but will pitch in ours.
    Be realistic. Do you think the Cubs would deal a pitcher to the Reds this year if Theo thought they could win the division this year?

    I am with you….I think they should go for it EVERY year! You can do this and still build for the future…but again, Theo is speaking loud and clear. They are rebuilding……… but have not gone public and saying they are.

    • Coolpdxcubsfan

      Agree totally. This is a Major Market team! There is no reason why we couldn’t at least be competitive, even without the Greedy Prince and other high priced FA.

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    According to Rosenthal, the Cubs have re-signed Reed Johnson to 1 year deal. Will post update soon.

  • Aaron

    Wow….trying to figure out what the “Cubs Way” is….it certainly doesn’t appear to be anything remotely like what they had in Boston that made them successful.

    We heard that they like guys that work the counts….so, they go ahead and trade for Stewart, a guy that K’s a lot, and are now rumored to have signed Reed Johnson to a 1 year deal…a guy that is coming off one of the most ridiculous seasons I’ve ever seen for a hitter (NOT in a good way), where he had just 5 walks and 63 K’s in 266 plate appearances…..now, think about that for a minute…………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………..If spread out over the course of full-time duty, it would roughly amount to 15 walks, 189 K’s………………

    Yup, they sure defined the “Cubs Way”….which apparently is “THE SAME WAY” it’s always been

    • Kojak Osborne Jr.

      lol it is the Cubs being the Cubs so much for a new change.

    • Anthony

      Theo inherited an established winner in BOS, so yes, this is different to him

  • Kojak Osborne Jr.

    Cubs has signed Reed Johnson to a 1 year deal pending a physical.

    • cc002600

      good move

  • cubtex

    “The Cubs front office does not know much about Tony Campana right now other than he is very fast.” hahahahaha. Has he been playing in Siberia for the last several years????

    • cubtex

      Maybe Theo needs to hire another National Cross Checker to monitor the other Cross Checker  :)

      • Aaron

        Agreed….you can never have too big of a front office….Remember, games are won in the front office…not on the field….LMAO

    • Aaron

      so much for improved scouting department….

      These front office guys are like the free agents that come with good track records, reach free agency, get their big payday, and then completely forget how to play the game…………

      THERE IS NO DAMN GRACE PERIOD!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

      If you want to define a “Cubs Way”, and it involves signing/resigning guys that are so completely opposite of what made you successful (ie.-hackers like Soriano, Byrd, Johnson, Baker, Stewart, etc.) in Boston, then why the hell did we hire you?!?!?!?!?!? Jim Hendry did an EXCELLENT job of finding worthless players like that.

      • John_CC

        Never thought I’d see the day…Aaron and Cubtex are supporting each others arguments.  Something is definitely wrong! :)

        • cubtex

          hahaha

  • Aaron

    Here is the team as constructed right now:
    Garza
    Dempster
    Zambrano
    Wells
    Samardzija (they just said he’s going to be given a shot to make the rotation)

    Marmol
    Marshall
    Wood (we’ve been hearing his signing is inevitable)
    Cashner
    Dolis/Carpenter
    Russell
    L. Castillo

    *if Marshall is traded as rumored, Maine likely gets first crack at his spot, and if he doesn’t fare well, then Beliveau gets it.

    With Dolis, Carpenter, L. Castillo, among others (including Samarzija if Cubs land Travis Wood) all vying for 1-2 spots in the pen, you can see why trading Marmol is a necessity at this point given the power arms (and sadly, likely more effective arms at this point…remember Marmol’s 10 blown saves?)

    C-Soto, Castillo/Clevenger
    1B-LaHair
    2B-Barney, Bianchi
    SS-Castro
    3B-Stewart, Baker
    LF-Soriano, DeWitt
    CF-Byrd, Johnson
    RF-DeJesus
     

    Now….you tell me if a roster that includes Bianchi, Baker, DeWitt, and Johnson on the bench can win more than 70 games….remember, they WILL be used in starter’s roles, given likely lingering injury issues (if last year is any indication) to DeJesus, Stewart, and Soriano.

    Gag me!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Are you kidding me?!?

    Here is your likely lineup Cubs fans:

    DeJesus (remember, they said he’d be used in leadoff)
    Barney
    Castro
    LaHair
    Soriano
    Stewart
    Byrd
    Soto

    Can you say 90+ loss season?!?!?!?

    • cubtex

      The thing is that I am sure there will be more changes to the everyday lineup. I hope they pick up a 1st baseman, trade Byrd and Soriano……

      BUT……Look at that Bench!!! The bench is huge over a course of 162.

      So they just resigned Reed as a #4. Can you now keep Campana as a #5? All they know about him anyway is that he is fast :)

      They have Baker,DeWitt and maybe Bianchi as infield depth. Where is the pop? DeWitt is your primary LH pinch hitter??

      You know things are bad when RIP is being more optimistic than I have been!

    • cubtex

      RIP blasted me for saying the Cubs have no shot to compete next year. Look at that roster you put up there.

      Now….let’s say they add a Prince Fielder, Travis Wood and Edwin Jackson. Does that suddenly make them competitive for next year? Assume they keep Garza(if they do his value will be less next year because he will be one year closer to free agency) You have a rotation of

      Garza
      Demp
      Z
      Edwin Jackson
      Travis Wood

      That is not an awful rotation…but is it good enough to win the division? I don’t think so and if they are not going to lock up Garza….it is not wise to keep him.

      For the lineup…You still have zero team speed and no one to protect Fielder. Castro will get better defensively but Fielder will be a step down defensively from Pena. DeJesus is a step down from Fuko but Stewart should be an upgrade over ARam defensively. Unless some major changes happen…it will be a long year!

  • John_CC

    I am going to compare two well regarded, left handed starting pitchers – both make their MLB debut’s at the young age of 23, these are their respective stat lines at the same age, and the same point in their careers, i.e. first season in the league. It is a simple as looking at a B-R. com, if you care to do a little research for your own argument of why this trade would be ridiculously bad or fair or somewhere in between.

    A: GS- 24, IP- 125, ERA- 5.59, WHIP- 1.50, K/9- 5.5, BB/9- 4.2
    B: GS- 17, IP- 103, ERA- 3.51, WHIP- 1.08, K/9- 7.5, BB/9- 3.4

    And to not be “cherry picking” on good season vs. one bad season, each pitchers respective lines over their first two full seasons combined, both at age 23 and 24.

    A: GS- 43, IP- 229, ERA- 4.83, WHIP-1.45, K/9- 5.7, BB/9- 3.7 HR/9- 1.3
    B: GS- 35, IP- 208, ERA- 4.18, WHIP-1.28, K/9- 7, BB/9 – 2.8, HR/9- 0.8

    Which player is a better pitcher at the exact same point his career?  Which would say has more upside at the age of 25?

  • Aaron

    Wait…Cubtex, I think I figured things out if their recent moves are any indication of the talent they look for in trades and free agency:

    Cubs will trade…

    Garza to the Rangers for Scott Feldman straight up

    Zambrano to the Marlins for access to Ozzie Guillen’s son’s Twitter account

    Marshall to the Reds for Travis Wood (and that’s all)

    Soto to the Yankees for Pedro Feliciano…but in order to “get the lefty they really want to replace Marshall” they need to kick-in Brett Jackson

    Castro to the Giants for Mike Fontenot (to replace IF depth they lost) and Chris Stewart (to replace Soto)

    Marmol to the Red Sox as compensation for Epstein

    PTBNL (which ends up being Javier Baez) to the Padres as compensation for Hoyer

    Then….in order to replace some of the talent they lost, the Cubs will…

    sign Manny Ramirez after his 50-game suspension

    coax Bill Mueller, Pedro Martinez, Kevin Millar, and Neifi Perez out of retirement

    • cubtex

      :)

  • Anthony

    This stuff is funny. Folks want the old baggage shipped out, yet at the same time want NAME players.

    THERE ARE NONE

    Unless you want Beltran, Oswalt, Crisp, JD Drew

    The frustration is the mere fact that the big league club lacks the NAMES that were inherited by Epstein, and Epstein’s Mother, complete with an excuse note.

    People wanted Pena out, can’t hit in the clutch, yada yada, and Ramirez out because of age and defensive butchery, and no player will satisfy some folks as replacements unless they are named Fielder and any stud starting 3B player that is “not for sale”.

    Everyone wants Rizzo, but even SD leapfrogged him with Alonso, who has his own set of warts. He(Rizzo) is not MLB ready according to their own front office.

    In other words, if the Cubs do not acquire all-star players off other peoples rosters for the 2012 season using players like Byrd, Soriano, Marmol, Soto, Marshall, etc etc as trade bait, then the entire process is a failure.

    It is obvious, using the Rule 5 as one gauge, that the concensus is that no upper-level Cub minor leaguers are MLB caliber, at least from an offensive standpoint.

    The Fault lies where? Between the big club and AAA, a great purging needs to occur

    Get rid of the cloggers, guys stuck at one level not progressing/improving and accelerate the new guys and “let them play up” in the system.

    Challenge them. Yeah, Theo loves the 2011 Cubs draft crop, so lets see all of them on the fast track, from round 1 to the very last selection signed.

    You can bet Ricketts has a staff of internet trolls, and he probably reads this stuff, from all the websites because peedoff fans mean a revenue reduction.

    It may come to the point where he tells Theo, “sign that fat guy already to make my sheep happy”

    Will that signing stop the piisssin and moanin?

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    From Jim Bowden: Cubs source: prospects will be key to Marshall/Wood swap if it gets done

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    ESPN’s Jeremy Schaap reports that Bill Buckner will be a Class A hitting coach for Cubs.

    • cubtex

      OK. I like 1 move! Nice to have Bill Buckner back in the Cubs organization(even though he has Red Sox ties too)

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil
  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Cubs announce Minor League Managers & Staff.

    Dave Bialas will manage Triple-A Iowa, Buddy Bailey Double-A Tennessee, Brian Harper High-A Daytona,Casey Kopitzke Low-A Peoria, Mark Johnson Short-Season Boise. Bill Dancy moves from Triple-A Iowa manager to organization’s infield coordinator. Cubs keep coaching staff assistant Dave Keller in the organization as hitting coach for Triple-A Iowa.

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Waiting on details and confirmation … Trade appears to be done

    From Bruce Levine: Cubs and Reds agree in principle to trade sending Sean Marshall to cinci for lefty Travis Wood and 2 minor leaguers. Cubs and Reds players must pass medicals 1st.