Rambling About the Cubs While Waiting on the Cubans

Hello again, everybody. It has been a few weeks, but it’s Friday, and I am back. So, let’s get together, and throw out some quick thoughts and observations about our favorite baseball team. There is a lot going on, and at any minute now the Chicago Cubans could really start taking shape.

(And Kudos to the person who used that in a comment. I got a good chuckle.)

Nonetheless, news could start breaking any minute so let’s get moving.

  • After trolling around the rumors and comments, it seemed there was some hesitation in a Byrd for Prado trade. Um. Am I missing something? Done, done, done, done, and done.
  • I cannot fathom the Braves executing this trade, but I would hop on it in a heartbeat.
  • I think the second-half of the 2011 season will most likely pigeonhole Barney as a career backup. It was just way too reminiscent of Theriot’s multiple August swoons.
  • So, the Cubs could really use a second baseman, like, well, Martin Prado.
  • Okay, I will leave it alone before he becomes Brian Roberts or Jake Peavy in my obsessive mind.
  • Calm and settle, Manny Corpas is not on the 40-man. It was a split contract. It is okay.
  • Also, the Cubs have not paid a reliever over $5 million per this offseason, which cannot be said for many teams cruising for a letdown in the next season or two.
  • I mean, how much longer can Johnny Paps keep it up?
  • I know this has been discussed at some length, but Cespedes’ performance is scary. And not scary good.
  • I know Theo says his crew has scouted him for quite some time, but as many have said, Soriano comparisons are immediate.
  • I am all good with Soler. Soler is great. The opportunity for nicknames with a guy like Soler is awesome. Soler powers the Cubs. Have Solar in your System totally completes it. Our Soler System does all nine jobs.
  • Sorry, I could go on and on. Let’s hear some of your ideas below. This should be fun.
  • However, to those who point out this is Thoyer’s last opportunity to spend on prospects due to the new CBA, you may be on to something. If one of the two pans out, then it was totally worth it.
  • However, Jorge Soler just rolls of the tongue a bit easier than Yoenis Cespedes, don’t you think?
  • Then again, it’s not my money, and if Tom is all good with it, then let’s do it. And it appears Tom is ready to spend. And he didn’t even raise ticket prices.
  • Let’s roll out the red carpet for Rodrigo Lopez! Welcome back, young, er, somewhat young, er, just welcome back, captain!
  • By not signing Prince Fielder, the Cubs have moved ahead in the infield defense rankings.
  • There is also a comment here about not signing Prince Fielder and disappointed Lakeview restaurants, but I am not going there. You can if you would like below. I am classy. We are all classy.
  • Three prospects in the top 100. Yea, McLeod has some work to do.
  • I am just glad that Jackson and Rizzo are in the top 40. That is a good thing. There are others that really like Rizzo. It is not just our new trifecta.
  • Speaking of trifecta, do we go McThoyer? Or McHoystein?
  • Or, why don’t you tell me below? Sound good? “Good, great, grand, wonderful. Everybody on the bus!”
  • And I will end on thought #23 in honor of Ryno. Let me hear your ideas below. We have a lot to discuss.

I hope your respective Fridays are absolutely fantastic. And until next time …

Stay Classy Cubs Fans!!

Quote of the Day

"What scares me is what scares you. We're all afraid of the same things." - John Carpenter

Share on Fancred
  • Aaron

    …..that Veronica Vaughn is one piece of ………………………

    excellent quote…and excellent movie reference Brian

    • Brian

      Thank you, kind sir.

  • Dorasaga

    Brian, I don’t think Soriano will be happy platooning with Prado. That’s where he’s good at, left field. Maybe John CC will check the stats for you. He got me on this one for his fantasy team, I suppose. j/k.

    And anything must go with -Thoyer.

  • cubsin

    No NL team in its right mind would give Pujols 10 years or Fielder 9 years. When Votto leaves Cincinnati, he’ll go to the AL as well. Even though I dislike the DH rule, I think it may be time to expand it to all 30 teams.

    • jiba11

      Yes, the NL is losing exceptional offensive powers because they would be too old at the end of their contracts. Not good for the N.L.

      I’m tired of seeing all the N.L. pitchers go up to the plate and look like little leaguers. I’d like to see professional hitters 1 – 9 in the batting order, not an SP.

      • roguesqr09

        Two enthusiastic thumbs way DOWN

    • Ripsnorter1

      YES! A Cubs’ fan that is really sane!  

      Give me the DH!

      • Anthony

        Using 2011 regular season stats, the AL had a batting average of .258 and average runs per team of 723.

        The NL had a batting average of .253 and average runs per team was 668.

        So an average, an AL club scored 1/3 of one run higher per game.

        I will agree it should be uniform, all DH or no DH.

        And it has nothing to do with the players union and one additional job per team, as 25 man is 25 man, whether an additional hitter or an additional relief pitcher on the roster.

        • Bredstik

          I do think it has SOMETHING to do with the players union.  Do you think Pujols & Fielder would have gotten the contracts that they did if there was no opportunity for them to DH at the end of them?  I don’t.

      • ChadAudio

        I think it’s bad for baseball that these teams couldn’t keep Pujols and Fielder, I think it’s also bad for baseball that they all shifted to the AL.  On top of that, I think it’s bad for the NL product and bad for the NL central.  It sucks… BUT, I would never want the DH in the NL.

        • roguesqr09

          Could not agree more, on all points

    • Bredstik

      Getting RID of the DH altogether would solve this problem as well.

      Sure, it wouldn’t allow ANY team to use them as DHs, but it would level the playing field for all teams.

  • Raymond Robert Koenig

    Agreed on Cespedes. Go after the young Cubans first.

  • Anthony

    Chicago Cubans

    Centipede

    and

    Cirque Du “Soler”

  • J Daniel

    Does anyone think a Byrd for Prado could be done as a straight up deal?  I don’t believe it could and would take a little more than Byrd.  I really like Prado and think he would be an excellent pick up.  I view him as a DeRosa type and those guys are extremely valuable over the course of the year due to injuries and necessary days off.

    • Zonk

      I don’t, and I bet the Braves don’t either.  Prado is owed $1.8 mil LESS than Byrd for starters, and has another year of club control.  He’s younger, plays several positions, and has a better offensive track record than Byrd.  About the only thing Byrd can do that Prado can’t is play CF. 

      Byrd is owed $6.5 mil this year.  Given his productivity and age, I think that amount is about even for him this year.  I think Byrd has very little positive value.  Not negative value, like Soriano, I just think his salary and productivity are roughly a match.

      Once Jackson is ready and past the May date where his arb eligibility rolls back a year, I think the Cubs would be glad to just save the money on Marlon.  And this might be the plan; wait until closer to the deadline, bring up Jackson, and see who has a need for Byrd, because he can help a contending club.

      As a side note, this is one Hendry contract that wasn’t that bad

    • WidespreadHisPanic

      There’s a minor leaguer the Cubs lost in the Rule 5 that, to me, could be the ‘mark derosa’ type player you are talking about.

      Ryan Flaherty

      • Anthony

        kid is a good hitter

    • daverj

      No chance the Braves would deal Prado for Byrd.  It would take a lot more than Byrd to land Prado.

      Prado has DeRosa’s versatility, but Prado is also a better hitter than DeRosa.

      Byrd has no trade value now other than a pure salary dump.

  • John G

    Soler power = home runs
    Soler flares = line drives in the alleys
    Soler wind = K’s
    Solera System = celebrating with a fine glass of sherry

    • brent carmona

      Two enthusiastic thumbs way up.

    • Cory

      Pretty sure its not pronounced that way

  • Ripsnorter1

    Trifecta?

    How about this:

    THE BEVERLY HILLBILLIES.

  • Anthony

    former Cuban Cub minor leaguer, recently released S. Borges suspended 50 games for refusal to take drug test.

  • Anthony

    Anyone consider the lag between Centipede playing time from the Cuban league to the winter leagues a “cycling off” period?

    • jiba11

      Could be, but if a club is going to pay him $30M+, I’m sure they administered their own drug tests.

  • Aaron

    I don’t believe the Cubs should sign Cespedes. If they’re willing to go big for him…they should’ve done so with Fielder who is about the same age. I believe Soler makes a hell of a lot more sense when considering the youth movement and lowered expectations this year, because they won’tbe ready to compete for at least 2 yrs….they might surprise like the D’backs recently but it’s doubtful.

    I still hope they make shrewd moves to unload Soriano, Soto, Baker, DeWitt, Marmol, Garza, and maybe even Dempster…because fact is, they don’t factor much into the future

    • Ripsnorter1

      I agree on Cespedes–he’s a minor leaguer in my mind.

    • Bredstik

      Agree on all counts…

  • Anthony

    off-topic, sort of, but it has to do with when is a player ready for MLB, why is a player ready, are minor league stats, under the correct sample size(1000 at bats maybe) indicative of major league results?

    I have mentioned that velocity is velocity, in A ball, AAA, and the majors, as is movement, and the main difference is command and control.

    The following stats for 3 players includes a star, a utility, and an average player. Their lines are MLB and career MilB for each. All 3 players have a usuable sample size.

    MLB-.312/.371/.563 with a K/AB of 19.5%
    Milb-.313/.375/.572 with a K/AB of 19.7%

    These are near identical against minor league and MLB pitchers. Remember, MLB pitchers were Milb also.

    Next Player:

    MLB-.283/.341/.413 with a K/AB of 19.5%
    Milb-.292/.381/.433 with a K/AB of 15.2%

    Good reason for the slight drop here——see below

    Next Player:

    MLB-.284/.356/.421 with a K/AB of 15.1%
    Milb-.301/.400/.464 with a K/AB of 13.4%

    slight drop here, some reasons—-see below

    Point I am making is that with enough minor league sample size, you get a general idea of what the player will probably do in MLB.

    The first Player is Ryan Braun.

    The 2nd Player is Reed Johnson, and one can argue that platooning has an affect on staying super-sharp.

    The 3rd Player is David deJesus, and one can argue a little park factor in Oakland as a contributor to a slight decline, but in general, not any great statistical outlier there.

    Now, find some players in the system with 800-1000 minor league at bats and you can get an idea ofhow they may do in MLB.

    By the time they get to that point in the system, most are entrenched in their ways, they are what they are on average.

    • Anthony

      Now, considering Theo is in town, complete with his hatchet, here are some familiar names, career statlines, and have at least tasted AA TENN and what age they will be mostly in the 2012 season.

      Adduci will turn 27 with .279/.352/.356 with K/AB 20.5%

      Fighting thru some injuries, not much power to make up for the K rate.

      Ty Wright will turn 27, better numbers profile-wise, solid contact, .296/.357/.432 with K/AB of 14.4%

      That is decent production and appears serviceable to a club.

      Marquez Smith,age 27 better fielding percentage at 2B versus 3B, and his numbers are bonus 2B .282/.355/.475 with K/AB at 21.5%

      Serviceable at the least

      Macias, age 26 has plate struggles .235/.305/.290 with a 15.9% K/AB

      Ridling, age 26, .289/.341/.471 with a K/AB of 18.8%, overall pretty decent, couldn’t he be a .275/20HR guy?

      Perez, age 24, .265/.308/.445 and a whopping 29% K/AB, and
      at that rate, approach issues, free swinger.

      Why JH Ha is interesting other than being young at AA at age 21, is how he performs in 2012, currently a tweener statwise with a line of .281/.308/.408 and a K/AB of 13.5%

      Will he trade some BA for power? For such an acceptable contact rate, the OBP doesn’t mesh. If Ha puts up a TENN line of .275/.350/.475 and maintains his contact rate in 2012, then that would bode well for him and the organization.

    • Dorasaga

      I was gonna say the 3rd player is the best. On-base is gooood. So is patience. Some players are overrated for where they played and how they played. Likewise, DeJesus was underrated.

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Bobby Scales back with organization. Signed a minor league deal with Cubs, includes a non-roster invite to big league camp

    • Ripsnorter1

      I like him. He’s better than most of the utility players the Cubs have on board.

  • paulcatanese

    New York, Boston East, and now Miami North, gonna be tough to give the Cubs a new name.
    Nothing from the West, guess the Cowboys and Indians are not very good ballplayers, but are good a scalping tickets.

    The geographical makeup of this team is amazing.

    • Ripsnorter1

      Paul,
      NY, Boston, and Miami all have this is common:they are home to some pretty tough gangs.  So let’s call it: The Chicago Gangsters.How do you like it?

      • John_CC

        Because the city of Chicago needs Miami, NY or any other outside influence to be called the city of Gangsters?  Yeah.

      • paulcatanese

        Not bad Rip, and I know you were happyto see Scales around again. Good guy.

  • John G
  • Tony_Hall

    Here is a breakdown of Garza’s arbitration case.  It shows how the Cubs will win, IF, they go to arbitration. 

    http://www.bleachernation.com/2012/01/25/analyzing-the-matt-garza-arbitration-case-does-matt-even-have-a-chance/ 

    I for one hope that they agree, near the mid-point, and then finish is off with a 4-5 year deal. Cost certainty will be good for the Cubs if they keep him, and make it easier to trade him, if they get an unbelievable offer.

  • Bredstik

    Might as well stick with the Chicago Cubans name. Their alternate jersey that Zambrano always preferred looks like it says “Cuba” in script across the front anyway!

  • Ripsnorter1

    Theriot a Giant now…

    • paulcatanese

      Familiar DP combo again with Fotenot.

      • Calicub

        Cajun connection back action again

        • paulcatanese

          Yeah, there gettin further and further from Louisiana, next stop, Japan.

          • Coolpdxcubsfan

            Yeah, take their WS rings and run.
            lol.

  • paulcatanese

    The Cuban players (Concepcion) agent’s are telling people that their are a few teams interested and could sign as soon as this weekend.
    Good news, let him sign, quick, before the Cubs can put a check
     out there. And Cespedes as well, go to Miami, please.
    Soler may be the only one to take a chance on.

  • Tony_Hall

    Here is another ranking list, for those that enjoy these lists.  

    For those that don’t, please ignore.

    http://projectprospect.com/article/2012/01/27/2012-top-100-prospect-list 

    Cubs had 5 of Top 100 on this list.

    #41 Brett Jackson
    #47 Anthony Rizzo
    #75 Ronald Torreyes
    #91 Wellington Castillo
    #93 Javier Baez

  • paulcatanese

    Selig and his one game playoff. I hope none of the players get payed by the game.

    That could amount to 14 extra games at the end of the year.
    1-5-7-7 They could be on the tube till Christmas.

    But it bodes well for teams with enclosed stadiums

    If I could add correctly that would be 20 more games not 14 total 180 games for the season, could happen.