Rambling on a Whim and a Choi

It’s Friday, we’re eight days from the greatness of Spring Training, the Cubs have three players in another guy’s top 100 prospects, we haven’t signed Cespedes and it looks like Soriano is wearing the blue pinstripes this season at 1060 W. Addison.

So, with that said, and with many more things unfurl, let’s get rambling.

  • Is it just me, or do you ever sit back and think out loud, “I wonder what Hee-Seop Choi is up to these days?”
  • So, Cespedes definitely didn’t want to play for Miami, now he decided to visit with only Miami. Gotta love the hot stove.
  • I am not watching the NASCAR season preview on Comcast Sportsnet Chicago as I type this.
  • It is really hard to put much stock into Minor League Rankings by so many sources, but I was taken aback that Keith Law had Brett Jackson ranked so much lower in his top 100 than other publications.
  • I am sorry, but how does a guy considered to be a huge trade commodity warrant an 11-15 record and 4.01 ERA in the National League Central by PECOTA.
  • That is the one stat I am going to remember at the end of the season. If they are accurate, the Cubs are not getting much back on or just before July 31st.
  • By making Wells and Shark the odd men out, our starting rotation is projected to have 64 losses. That strikes me as one heck of a lot.
  • One final note on the PECOTA numbers, if Soto hits .260 with a .345 OBP and 19 homers, I will be absolutely ecstatic.
  • Josh Vitters needs a huge showing in Spring Training. If these “experts” have any clue, Vitters cannot be happy tumbling down the team’s rankings every few months. He doesn’t have much time left to prove it.
  • I would love to see Rob Whitenack come back strong from TJ surgery. He had such a huge start to the 2011 campaign. I just really want to see what that guy can do at all levels and hopefully the majors.
  • EIGHT DAYS!!
  • Seriously, what do you think Hee-Seop Choi is doing these days?
  • Yes, I know what he is up to, but I honestly had that thought Wednesday night so I found out he is in the South Korean League.
  • I need help, but think we already knew that.
  • I really cannot wait for Spring Training to start. I cannot take another friggin, top-whatever-this and top-whatever-that list.
  • Is it me or are there just more and more and more lists every year? The proliferation of top-lists is really misleading for some. Unfair expectations can be leveled against certain players while others are written off too quickly.
  • Final thought, as I have said before, Javier Baez is getting a ton of love for having shown very little outside of the high-school level. Again, as you can tell, not a big fan of these.
  • SOAPBOX is over.
  • I predict that Garza’s numbers will be SIGNIFICANTLY better than his PECOTA projections.
  • I see Cespedes playing in Miami. I think he would prefer a familiar climate to the one he knows. And I think the Bulls would have a shot at Dwight Howard if he didn’t feel the same way.
  • And I am just fine with Cespedes playing in Miami. I would prefer it that way.

I hope this gets the conversation going. Eight more days, and our conversation can turn to actual, you know, baseball players playing baseball on a field. I think we all look forward to that.

And until next time …

Stay Classy Cubs Fans!!

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
  • Josh Man

    So I just got home from the midnight showing of Star Wars Episode One in 3D, and was reminded of when I saw it way back in 99 in theaters the first time. My hopes were ridiculously high, and needless to say, my expectations for the film were not met.

    Sometimes having high hopes or expectations only lead to greater disappointment.

    It is when you go in with lowered expectations that you can often find yourself wowed.

    It is with that thought that I consol myself as we get ready for a baseball season where our expectations are certainly quite low.

    I can practically guarantee that we won’t make the playoffs this year, but we might just have some instances where we are wowed.

    And I for one am ready.

    Let’s play ball and let’s go Cubs!

    • Last_ginger

      Even though Episode 1 was terrible I was still thrilled to see it in 3D. Worth 13 bucks to me.

      • Dantehicks16

        Spoken like a true Cubs fan…the product sucks, but the ballpark and the beer and the chicks…perfect.

        I’ll take wins over crappy Star Wars films, Keith Law, and a fat/ewok looking Soto.

      • paulcatanese

        Yeah, I still remember the Southtown theater on 63rd st south at $.25 cents for a movie, and White Castle, Wimpy’s just down the street, those were the days and a dollar would be enough tor the whole trip. 1939 for the year, and the Cubs were great. How times have changed.

  • Tony_Hall

    On all the Top this list and Top that list, projections for stats, etc.  

    This is for everyone.

    If you don’t like them don’t read them.

    If you are so much smarter than the people who put out these lists and stats, lets see your list and stats projections…seriously, let’s see you post your list and stats and see if ALL of us agree with your list.  I can guarantee you, that you will have someone disagree with you and call you Qlueless…

    • Anthony

      Every season has a Class that hasn’t experienced a ST and a full season, so a List that includes any of those names is one based on mere speculation and is biased toward draft position.

      These lists also exclude successful minor league players who have performed well, but either due to age and/or a not so dazzling original draft slot, get dismissed.

      These lists are simply regurgitated internet compilations that relate more to draft bonus/club investment than they do actual baseball ability.

      So, if you pretend that a certain 2007 1st rounder put up the past 4 years of his minor league numbers in NCAA D1 baseball, adjusted for metal bats, the results would be a 40th round senior sign with below-average defensive skills, for example, if even drafted at all, but with a 1st round tag, remains a top prospect?

      The only lists that matter are the transaction lists, promotions.

      • daverj

        Are you saying that that draft bonus and club investment are not related to baseball ability?  That would mean that the people making draft bonus and player investment decisions for teams are no better at player skill assessment than the folks you say are making charts of player rankings from “momma’s basement”.

        • Anthony

          draft bonus’ for high school players are also partially based on signability. Every kid has their price

          draft bonus’ for college pitchers are usually spot on, and for college hitters, a crapshoot

          do some research on it

          the new CBA and the awarding of bonus’ will kind of paint the picture I describe

          you don’t know if a drafted college player 3-4 years earlier in high school set a price that couldn’t be met by MLB clubs, but obviously that amount of players is high evidenced each year by many/most choosing college first 

          think about that!

      • Tony_Hall

        I am glad to hear you finally admit, that the amount of money that a player receives is based on their situation.

        Let’s see your list…

        • Anthony

          I admitted nothing, back off kid, getting tired of it

          • Tony_Hall

            Getting tired of what, people calling you on things.  

            You stated “”draft bonus’ for high school players are also partially based on signability. Every kid has their price”  

            That goes with all players.  Concepcion received his contract based on the fact he was a free agent and wasn’t subject to the draft.  No different then a player that can go to college or stay in college has that leverage to get more money, versus a player that wants to play in the minors and not go to college.

            I appreciate the kid remark, been a long time since someone has called me that. 

          • gary3411

             LOL

          • gary3411

             “draft bonus’ for high school players are also partially based on signability”

            I think that’s what Tony’s referring to.

            Just like high school kids might receive more money because they have the option to go elsewhere (a college), it is similar to the reason Soler and Cespedas will get large contracts because they have the option to go elsewhere (other MLB teams).

            Then again, maybe he was referring to something else I am not aware of.

    • Anthony

      well, I made a post and it somehow got deleted? Wonder why?

      • Tony_Hall

        What are you trying to say?  Because Neil doesn’t censor posts.

    • Gramps

      Good assessment Tony! The reason I don’t pay any attention to those lists is that they can’t measure the heart of a ballplayer. There are so many intangibles to this game that it is almost impossible to say who will succeed and who won’t. Over the years I have seen so many players who were projected to be super stars and they turned into duds. And on the other side, there have probably been guys who never made a list who turned out to be very good major league players. Maybe I am old fashioned…..no, not really maybe…..I am old fashioned in the way that I wait to see what they will do when they get to the major league level before I try to assess their worth. All I can say is that you will never see a “Gramps List of Prospects” lol Please, please start this season already!!! GO CUBS!

      • Anthony

        Gramps, you are not old-fashioned, you are just plain old RIGHT!

        Some fodder for 2011 drafted players. Maybe I will post some on the 2009 and 2010 players later.

        The 2011 College guys:
         
        Since I am not a List type person regarding prospects, I decided to comment instead with some basic information. With the college players, now entering their 1st Spring Training and 1st full season, and with the dynamic of a brand new set of evaluators under the Theo Epstein regime, it will interesting to see how it all plays out.
         
        With college guys, you have at least, a book of statistics and better information versus high school players, even the early round ones that have some National Showcasing under their belts, i.e Aflac and other events where the competition is better than their local high school opponents, as 99% of these opponents end their careers in baseball upon graduation. They better have dominated it!.
         
        Zeke deVoss, number one tool is speed, good contact in college, transitioned to BBCOR bats very well in 2011, and carried these abilities into his half-season Pro debut. I saw DeVoss play in college, and I like his game. His body type limits his field position to either CF or 2B. His college line in limited duty of  555 plate appearances is .296/.425/.453, but in 2011 with BBCOR, .340/.491/.456. DeVoss profiles as a leadoff type on the high-end, or a 9th batter as a floor/Utility. DeVoss needs to find a defensive home and develop defensively. He is a base stealing threat, solid eye at the plate, and a solid approach. OBP is his game, and the lack of power is not an issue.
         
        Tony Zych, out of U of Louisville can bring some heat, and I saw him in college and summerball. There is effort in the delivery, the fastball is plus, but the secondary stuff needs polish to keep better hitters honest. If he shows that in 2012, he could fast-track thru the system. The ability and tools are there and some refining is needed. His college ERA was 4.03 with a WHIP of 1.29, but it was 1.43 with BBCOR in 2011 due to an increase in walks, command issues.
         
        Rafael Lopez is an offensive-type catcher out of Florida State and has the shorter body type(PudgeRod) at 5’9” and 200 pounds that helps his durability. His college line hitting was .299/.399/.445 and he also improved in 2011 with BBCOR at .325/.437/.520 and makes solid contact with minimal strikeouts well under 20% of at bats, and a KPA of 15% in college ball. Basically, he is a good hitter, uses the entire field, and patient, and had a good pro start in Boise. I like this player, and feel he may rise fast in the system.
         
        John Andreoli, out of UCONN is a CF only profile due to a lack of power. His college line overall is .341/.402/.404 but in 2011 with BBCOR, the line dropped to .319/.375/.350. He can steal bases, which was his role in college, but he now competing with the likes of DeVoss, Chen, and all the younger kids in the system. The jury is out.
         
        James Pugliese is young, a one-year JUCO kid, and I have no book and reserve comment due to a lack of information, like the high school kids.
         
        Paul Hoilman is Power. This athlete, built like a TE in football has set records for ETSU as well as in the ASUN conference with video game stats like .369/.478/.738 with 73 Home Runs. His 2011 BBCOR line fell to .313/.440/.724 indicating the change to BBCOR bats affected his average and OBP, but not his true power, and his short stint in Boise reflected similar results with wood. The Power remained with wood, but the rest of his slash took a hit, especially contact rate/high strikeouts.
         
        In college, Hoilman had a K/AB of 25%, and in 2011 with BBCOR, increased to 33.6%, so you can see how that carried into Pro ball with Boise. Hoilman is solid defender at 1B, and very athletic for a big guy. I saw him play in college and in summer wood bat. You can’t teach raw power, and if he trades a little of it in exchange for better approach, he becomes very interesting.
         
        Ben Klafczynski has intrigue. I have previously mentioned he was highly ranked Nationally in high school with his name appearing on basically every LIST from BA to honors from the coaching community, and chose college at Kent State. His college career also set team records as well as MAC conference records with a line of .350/.429/.584, and his 2011 BBCOR line improved to .368/.448/.591 which shows that the bat change made little difference and he adjusts well. I saw him in college, the Cape, and in the NECBL where he won the HR Derby pretty easily. Very athletic, plus/plus RF arm, and a good lean body type at 6’3”. One scout showed me a video of his leaping ability on a basketball court. Wow! Pretty LH swing, and will be interesting to follow. Struggled out of the gate with Boise/Peoria, but seemed to put it together hitting .321 in the month of August. By far the best player at the 2011 Austin regional which I attended. I like him.
         
        Taiwan Easterling is another plus athlete out of Florida State, and like Szczur, a football player with a small college baseball sample of only 146 plate appearances due to being multi-sport. I saw him in Peoria, and as raw as he his, enough intrigue to follow him for this additional reason. In 2007, he also appeared on the ABCA coaches list as a top nationally ranked baseball player. His passion for football led him to that path first, so the short 2011 introduction into pro baseball has opened a new door for him, and I expect he will open some eyes, as he did before attending FSU. From observation, he just needs more reps, and on defense, the instruction to improve his reads and routes using the same skills that made him a solid skill-position footballer. Thinking LF will be his position due to the CF depth in the system and not enough arm for RF. Another interesting follow, and another player in this List who arrived under their own unique path. I like him.
         
        A short comment on the 2011 high school kids. Baez has all the upside tools in the world, but he is young, there is no rush, and he needs to experience the Grind, then we can see what results come from playing under those conditions.
         
        Yes, the Vogelbach power is nice, but I have seen several 500 foot metal bat bombs in college games, not BP, in game situations. There is just no hype given to that, but some made for TV power showcase is once again, all marketing, and kids get on the map, and get paid. That said, by just reviewing his swing on internet video, it is a good swing and 2012 will show us what that swing can produce, but I can’t get past the body type which effectively pigeon-holes his place on a baseball diamond, which limits opportunities.

        • Texcubnut

          Great information, Anthony. Good analysis and evaluations of players. Well done and a good read. Thanks for your time and effort.

          • Anthony

            thanks Tex, may do more on some players in the system a couple seasons already

        • John_CC

           Thanks for the insight into these players. Very interesting. Good list :)

          Now I have to research BBCOR bats vs. the former model.

          • Anthony

            huge difference in sweetspot and flyball distance

            NCAA D1 Home runs were cut in galf in 2011 versus 2010

            If you hit good with BBCOR, then you are a hitter

          • John_CC

             I hate metal bats.

        • gary3411

           A little elaboration on Zych. I’ve actually had the opportunity to have probably around 50 AB’s against him growing up from ages 10-17. Our travel teams were based out of towns next to each other so we had quite a rivalry and played each other 3-5 times a year. His delivery is very deceptive and the ball is not easy to pick up (from youtube videos I see his delivery has not changed at all). His fastball has life and seems to almost rise at the end (I’ve swung under it many a times). His slider was also tough to pick up. Both pitches he has always struggled to control. Don;t ever remember a changeup.

          I fear that with his unique delivery he may never be able to develop good command, almost like Marmol. Because he has had that delivery for sooo long, I’m doubting he can ever alter it very significantly, as I’m sure he has at least tried because he has played for phenominal coaches his entire life.

          I’ve also noticed he has gotten bigger at Luoisville, which would explain the mph he has put on his fastball since HS. I am convinced he has hit a ceiling wit his velocity though. 94-96 touching 97 or 98 here and there. Reports of 99 I am sure were once in a great while and probably with a hot gun. 

          No doubt he is a reliever and will stay in that role.

          One last note, he is a great athlete. Zych played a very good shortstop with great baseball instincts and could absolutely rake.

          I’m not so high on him personally as I think he has already about reached his ceiling, unless he can really find that groove to repeat the delivery and locate that slider and fastball, but we shall find out.

      • paulcatanese

        Agree with you all the way. Lists are prospects only and should be at the major league level before evaluated.

        • Anthony

          More information from the other Prospects from college 2010 and before that never had to make the transition to BBCOR from the more lively BESR metal bats:
           
          Starting with Richard Jones, the slugger from the Citadel. Enough sample to compare past college players and their hitting tendencies from metal to wood. Jones raked in Peoria and possibly opened a few eyes, but now he gets to do it again for the new set of eyes, starting with Theo & Co.
           
          In college, Jones had a career line of .333/.400/.606 and had a K/AB rate of 25.3%. His current Milb line is .284/.328/.473 and a K/AB rate of 27.7%. Jones numbers are a solid indicator of using the same approach since college applying it to pro pitching and wood bats. Although 2011 was an overall improvement, the slashing from the heels approach may only repeat the performance versus improve it, and could cause a stall.

          Drafted as a catcher, he is limited to 1B and does OK there defensively. In 2011, his EBH% was a strong 41%. Its not an all-or-nothing approach, just an aggressive one. He is very strong, and if he can at least repeat in Daytona his 2011 season, and improve a tad on approach, he becomes mores interesting.
           
          Greg Rohan came from Kent State, and since his arrival, has been utilized defensively at the corner positions. In college, his career line was .321/.408/.605, and after his first short-season in 2009, has been one of the better productive hitters in the organization. I have seen him play both college and in pro baseball, and what stands out is that he is a baseball player first.

          His current career pro line is .290/.347/.421, and finished 2011 very strong at Daytona. He makes good contact, doesn’t strike out much, and will turn 26 midseason. He needs to get to AA and keep hitting and has value being able to cover 1B, 3B, and LF. He has been in Mesa all Fall and Winter working training. He becomes more interesting if he gets to TENN and slashes .300/.360/.500 with good defense.
           
          Justin Bour is a big, strong kid out of George Mason. His college line was .347/.418/.621 which is pretty impressive. He has methodically moved up a level each Pro season, and starts 2012 with a pro line of .279/.351/.443 and his 2011 A+ numbers at Daytona held book closely while he hit 30 doubles and 23 HR’s. Those are nice totals, and he only strikes out 20% of his at bats.

          Bour is one of the many solid 1B prospects and boasts a .987 fielding percentage. If book holds true, he gets to do it in TENN AA in 2012, and looking closely at translating college metal bat performance to wood bat performance, good hitters will still maintain contact and average, the power always decreases until the player masters the art of imparting backspin.
           
          Pierre LePage had an injury filled 2011, but the former UCONN standout and former 2009 CCBL Champion (along with Klafczynski) just plain doesn’t strike out very often wherever he plays. In college, his line was .336/.389/.432 and his K/AB was a mere 5%, that is crazy low.

          A solid defensive MIF, his pro line in 557 plate appearances is .303/.350/.414 indicating his methods and approach don’t change(which is good) when he went from metal to wood and his K/AB still at 9%. I like this kid as he can steal bases and play decent defense, and is a smart base runner. I saw him in college, the Cape, and in Peoria. I expect similar numbers and probable improvement from this scrappy player and hope he stays healthy. He can be a catalyst type table-setter.

      • Tony_Hall

        I agree Gramps.  I read the Top whatever lists for entertainment value only.

    • BootsDay

      Is there any way Neil can set up a filtering process where every comment goes through you before it is published? Over the past few months you’ve gone from a guy who cautioned people to stay classy, to someone that snipes at people for an opinion. It’s an opinion, he’s not misstating a fact that needs correcting. Lighten up Francis.

      • Tony_Hall

        Sorry if I offended you.  My point was, it gets old listening to people breakdown these lists, like they are the end all.  They are for entertainment purposes only.  

        And there is only 1 person I snip at…

        • Anthony

          How many ways can you repackage the same dang names, then sell them?

          I prefer basic information on all players so when they do something to climb the ranks, it comes as no surprise.

          Don’t you find it odd that every time the experts mention Jackson as a top prospect, its followed by “no standout tools”, “strikes out to much”

          There are hundreds of professional players that the same can be said for, except they weren’t original 1st rounders, so they are labeled non-prospects by the same experts.

          So, which is it?

          I would put some merit into these jounalists if they were capable of writing reports, based on inquiries with organizational brass for ALL players within a system, but they won’t for one reason. It doesn’t sell papers!

          • Tony_Hall

            Now you don’t think Brett Jackson is going to be playing at the major league level?  

            What they say is he is above average across the board with nothing that he excels at, what’s wrong with that?

            There are not a lot of prospects that you can say that about.

            As far as selling papers, I haven’t bought one, it’s clicks on the website, of which, they would get the same number of clicks regardless of how they hype a player versus another, as Cub fans will look at every list they can find on the Cubs.  There is merit to these list, but overall it is just for entertainment.

            As far as writing reports based on inquiries within the organization…name one organization that would even consider letting writers get their internal information, so they could print it for all to see.  They write their opinions, based on what information they have access to, no different than you.

          • Anthony

            Tony, the reporters said NO standout tools, that means NOT above average or plus, they wrote that

          • Tony_Hall

            Here is the CCO’s report and compares him to Jim Edmonds.  Not a Hall of Famer, but he was absolutely an above average player. No skills above average would be Marlon Byrd.

            #1 – Brett Jackson, OF
            Brett Jackson is likely the next prospect in line to make his big league debut. Jackson is coming off a very good year in only his second full season of pro ball.The former first round pick of the Cubs in 2009 (31st overall pick) will not turn 24 until August (August 2, 1988) … and while player comps are typically dangerous, the comparison, both offensively and defensively, to Jim Edmonds is intriguing.Brett Jackson would have made his big league debut last season if not for an injury that put him on the DL at the same time Marlon Byrd was on the shelf. Jackson hurt his pinkie sliding back into second base in May and ended up on the disabled list. Once Jackson returned, the Cubs decided to leave him in the minors to finish the year instead of adding him to the 40-man roster … and it was the right move.Jackson was slated to play in the Arizona Fall League but opted to represent his country in the Pan Am Games.After putting together a good first full year of pro ball in 2010, Jackson excelled last season and put together a 20-20 season between the time spent in Double-A and Triple-A. Jackson was good with the Smokies but appeared to take his game to the next level with the I-Cubs.Jackson posted a .256/.373/.443/.816 line in 67 games with the Smokies and hit 10 doubles, three triples and 10 home runs. In 48 games with the I-Cubs, Jackson put together a .297/.388/.551/.939 line with 13 doubles, two triples and 10 home runs.Brett Jackson will be in his third straight big league camp and will likely begin the season as the starting centerfielder for the Iowa Cubs. Jackson has grown up in a short amount of time and his talents should be on display at Wrigley in the very near future.

          • http://gladiatorblog.blogspot.com/ SirGladiator

            There’s no doubt that Brett will be debuting soon, I wouldn’t be surprised if he opened the season with the Cubs, might actually be more surprised if he doesn’t.

          • gary3411

             standout: “something or someone as a person or performance remarkably superior to others” from dictionary.com

            “remarkably superior”

            Let’s say a player has power of 50 on a 20-80 grading scale which is just “above average”, maybe say 15-20 HR’s. By what you just wrote you are saying this player has standout power? Of course not, standout would be 70-80 based on the defnitition of the word standout, and I assume that writer used the word “standout” in a correct fashion when writing that about Jackson.

            Standout does not = above average.

            I like Tony’s question and am curious if there are people you say have had similar minor league careers to Jackson but aren’t at the top of a prospect list that you think are going to have as good of major league careers as Jackson??? Or are you inferring Jackson won’t have a major league career???

            If you take away his injury plagued beginning to the 2011 season, Jackson has absolutely torn it up his entire career. Who cares about strikeouts, it counts the same as a weak grounder or a popup. An out is an out. Not to mention he strikes out so much most likely because he takes a ton of pitches because he tries to draw walks, this puts him in counts with 2 strikes often which will result in a high strikeout rate. I don’t believe it is because he swings and misses so often.

  • Tony_Hall

    Now you got me curious…how is Hee-Seop Choi doing?  

  • Redlarczykg

    The Cubs are now going for defense, because they were one of the worst defensive teams in 2011.  They had Jeff Bianchi, known for his glove.  If they were going to cut (Maddox boy) Dewitt, why didn’t make that move which would have kept Bianchi?  I know Bianchi has not played AAA yet, but all Adrian has done at AAA is prove he’s not glove man you are looking for?

    • Zonk

      Because Bianchi is 25 years old and posted a .654 OPS in AA last year.  He must be a good glove man, because he would make Koyie Hill look good.  Seriously, Hill was a better hitter than that in the minors.

      But I understand the question; the reality is that we are shopping in the bargain-bin right now

      • Redlarczykg

        Zonk,

        Without being too negative, the Cubs (Theo) is siffting through the leftovers at Big-Lots, hoping to find something good.  I know we need to be patient. After all, it’s only been 105 years.

        I’m wondering, which mediore pitcher he’s picked up might be a find?

        • Ripsnorter1

          Which pitcher?

          None of them….

        • gary3411

           Wood

  • paulcatanese

    A whim and a choi? who played in that Dennis Morgan? Don Ameche?
    Brian, you are watching the classic movie channel again. Clever title.

  • John_CC

    Supposedly the Pirates and Yankees are talking about Burnett.  But the Bucs balked at having to pay him $11M for 2 years. 

    I do not like Burnett, at all.  But for $5.5M a year, come on Pirates!

    So here is a question, a hypothetical that I’d like to hear some opinions from you guys that are more dialed in on values than I am.  If the Yanks are willing to eat $22M to be done with Burnett, and want a DH in return…what would they want along with Soriano if the Cubs took Burnett and his entire $33M contract? 

    They’d be rid of a crappy contract on a player that really doesn’t have a spot and be taking on a crappier contract with one more year than the crappy contract but getting a decent DH.

  • Tony_Hall

    Interesting view from Ozzie and the Marlins on Cespedes.

    http://espn.go.com/mlb/story/_/id/7563173/gambling-sign-yoenis-cespedes 

  • Tony_Hall

    Good article on aging veterans and is this a perform “or else” year.

    http://insider.espn.go.com/mlb/blog/_/name/olney_buster/id/7561343/vernon-wells-adam-dunn-others-jobs-line 

    It’s an ESPN Insider article, so here is the only Cub listed…

    Alfonso Soriano, Chicago Cubs: He’ll make $54 million over the next three seasons, and the Cubs aren’t yet ready to dump him. But it’s a new regime, a new time, and if Soriano doesn’t produce and the Cubs decide to devote Soriano’s playing time to a younger player, they could unload the contract. If he struggles this year, it’d be a shock if Soriano is a Cub next winter.

  • Tony_Hall

    An overview of the Cubs by Tyler Lockman who covers Arizona for Fox Sports and is doing a Cactus League Countdown of each team.

    http://www.foxsportsarizona.com/02/10/12/Cactus-League-countdown-Chicago-Cubs/landing_dbacks.html?blockID=663764&feedID=3702 

    • Tom U

      This guy really did his homework. An impressive piece of writing!

  • GaryLeeT

    Hey Brian. The last I heard, Choi is back working his parents farm in S.K.

  • paulcatanese

    Cardenas, and now maybe Renteria? Speechless.

    • Tony_Hall

      Paul – Jon Heyman is the same reporter who linked the Cubs to ever big name free agent this offseason, by saying the player was a good fit for the Cubs, or that the Cubs were pursuing the player heavily….take it for what it’s worth…not much, until you see Renteria signs with xyz.