Rambling from … DON’T CALL IT A COMEBACK!!

No, seriously, don’t. While 14 out of 19 has been a blast to watch, when the Cubs brass does the right thing, the two best pitchers will be gone while pitchers like Casey Coleman and Chris Volstad could be pitching every fifth day. And when that happens, ain’t no comeback coming.

With that out of the way, lets lay it down, pick it up, and have some fun.

  • Thank you, Ronnie. Thank you for everything. It is a fricking downright shame you are not here to see your greatness be enshrined. Everyone in baseball should be unbelievably ashamed of themselves for this. He should have been in years ago.
  • With that said, I cannot wait to watch the ceremony on Sunday. Thankfully it is supposed to be hot on Sunday, which will be a good excuse for all of the “eye sweat” I produce while watching.
  • Paul Maholm has been a pretty good signing. Not too much to complain about with his performance this season.
  • Castro needs multiple days off. As Brenly said the other night, he has never really struggled in his Major League career. And that means he is probably pressing, and bad habits arise from pressing.
  • The ‘Riz is batting .338 and the Cubs have won 13 of the 18 games in which he has played. Not … too … shabby.
  • Bryan LaHair is doing his best impression of Kosuke Fukudome.
  • And before anyone freaks, LaHair’s first season with the Cubs is eerily similar to Fuk’s first season. Fantastic April, solid May, big slide, make the All-Star team, and now, according to the pundits, no one is interested in trading for him.
  • I think it is time to say that the Geovany Soto experience at Wrigley is done. I know Welington struggled, but this team is obviously playing for the future. So, either he or Clevenger. Let’s get that moving.
  • There is something simply awesome about watching important golf at 5:30 in the morning.
  • Also, it is a great excuse to crack a beer at 10 am on a Sunday. If you are so inclined, that is.
  • The commercial where Woody pulls The Hawk out of the ivy is extremely entertaining.
  • Will Ferrell and Zach Galifianakis were kind of funny. Decent, at best, but it was clearly WAY TOO ad-libbed.
  • Maybe they were upset they didn’t get to sing the stretch, but at Wrigley, Andre Dawson trumps almost anyone.
  • And as I am writing this, my MLB Trade Rumors App just popped up saying that the Royals and Pirates are interested in Maholm. At some point, Theo has to think, we do need to put a competitive team on the field.
  • Think about it … The Cubs trade Garza, Dempster and Maholm … they are left with Samardzija and Travis Wood, and fill in the blanks. This is why we won’t call it a comeback.
  • DeJesus may only be hitting .264, but he is getting on base more than 35 percent of the time, and that is something that is hard to complain about.
  • Speaking of the Cubs CF … Hey, Kim. How are you doing? Hope we can catch up soon. Tell Heidi DeRosa to come along.
  • “Dreams are what make life tolerable.”
  • The above quote is from what of the greatest sports movies of all time. NAME IT!
  • As the Cubs approach the deadline, and hopefully, and most likely, get rid of some key players, the future is what should be discussed. We all knew this was a rebuilding year, and next year is as well, but there are other, and hopefully, better things to come!

I will leave you all with that. Congrats to Sori for playing well and more than just respectably.

Here’s hoping the Cubs can ruin some fun for the Cardinals in St. Louis this weekend!

And until next time …

Congrats to Ronnie on the ultimate accomplishment!

Quote of the Day

"A mind troubled by doubt cannot focus on the course of victory." - Arthur Golden
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  • Tony_Hall

    Great Rambling!

    I don’t see Maholm being traded, he is extremely affordable for a SP and those soft tossing lefties seem to always be in demand.

    Dempster is gone, that is for sure, but Garza is still going to take a team giving up more than they should give up, or will want to, which makes me wonder if it will happen.

    Rudy…not talking about Jaramillo though.

    Rizzo, DeJesus, T Wood, Maholm, Camp, Corpas, Valbuena have all been positive moves. I will let others list the ones that have been bad, but this year wasn’t about the failures, but the moves that improve the team, while giving up very little of value in comparison.

    • Ripsnorter1

      Well, of the positive moves you listed, only Rizzo and Travis Wood might be considered good moves next year. Or in other words, “the future of the franchise.”

      And I wonder how much value Dempster really will bring in return. Look at it this way: if I were a GM, I’d think to myself, “How many starts does Dempster have left in him this year?” The answer would be, since there are 70 games left, he has a maximum of 14 starts left. In reality, it is 13 or less, since the deal has yet to be made.

      If he has 12 starts in him, how many of those starts will he win? Any 5th starter should be a .500 pitcher on a good team (6-6 record). Will Dempster go 10-2, ie, 4 extra wins? Or 8-4, ie, two extra wins?

      I’d think, “Is this guy going to go on the DL for a 3rd time this year? He’s already broken down twice, and he’s 35 years old. Maybe he will only start 8 games.” So that lowers value, too.

      And I’d think, “He’s a pure rental. And he’s been on a hot streak, and that means he’ll stop the hot streak once I acquire him.”

      SO-O-O-O-O-O-O-O…..
      I would be reluctant to give up my top prospect. I wouldn’t give up my stud 3rd base if I were the Tigers for perhaps 12 starts. I’d look to a pitcher I could keep.

      • Tony_Hall

        No team is going to give up their top studs for a rental…the rules have changed and the return on these guys will be lower.

        As far as the moves, they are positive asset moves, and you need to make lots of little ones, all the time, yet most people only look at the big splashes.

        • Ripsnorter1

          Do you want a positive comment from me?

          Corpas and Camp have pitch so much better than expected.

          • J Daniel

            Not sure what their record was at this point last year and don’t need to look it up – it was bad and they were not fun to watch! In fact I couldn’t and therefore didn’t watch. I just read Neil’s summarys. Even though the results might be the same at this point it feels different. They are better prepared. There are glimpses of the future. They are slowly starting all over (not fast enough for most of us I know).

            Let’s see what the next 11 days brings.

          • Tony_Hall

            39-59 last year 398

            this year 38-53 – 418…hard to believe this team that is rebuilding is ahead of JH’s last attempt to win…

          • J Daniel

            EXACTLY my point. I didn’t mention Soler signing above as it ie early but they have already improved the system.

          • http://twitter.com/sairdem Sair

            RUDY!!!

          • paulcatanese

            I agree Tony that they are ahead, would like it to continue that way. But am worried that it may turn to dust if certain players are indeed traded.
            Mostly Dempster and Garza,but then I guess thats the point, trade to upgrade, unfortunatly that will mean the end of the season.

          • J Daniel

            Probably will but everyone wants to trade these guys for prospects.

          • Tony_Hall

            I think I am entitled to a positive comment…

          • Ripsnorter1

            That “entitlement mentality” is ruining America.

            LOL

          • Tony_Hall

            Sorry, it was more a reference to a Few Good Men…you were suppose to say “I can’t handle a positive comment”

          • Ripsnorter1

            Oh. I don’t watch movies. Only the Cubs.

            Sorry to be so dull….

          • Tony_Hall

            That explains a lot…LOL.

            You would like the last seen scene and the back and forth on the witness stand between Tom Cruise and Jack Nicholson.

            http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5j2F4VcBmeo

  • Tony_Hall

    Soto…now that is a guy that his sell high moments have been missed…

    • J Daniel

      Should have been moved last year.

      • paulcatanese

        Agree, if not before, when he had value.

    • paulcatanese

      Agree, he as well as LaHair are now dust, and will bring nothing in return.
      On the other hand, I iust saw where Jason Kendall was resigned to a minor league contract. How old is that guy, and it would indicate catchers are still in demand, no matter how old.

      • Tony_Hall

        Soto will still bring a back a prospect, or he will help sweeten a deal. Lahair has not had any trade value above prospect, and at 29 would was only filler in any trades. If he hits again for a stretch and ends up with decent numbers for the season, he will have some value in the off-season.

  • Ripsnorter1

    I tell you that Team Theo is working on ruining Castro. I mentioned this before, and now there is plenty of evidence.

    They fired Rudy on June 12. The new coach is
    James Rowson. Rowson never made the bigs. He only played in A ball, and he hit a pathetic .204 for his career. He hit .189, .221 and .152 in 3 class A ball seasons. They always say, “if you can’t do, then teach.” He, along with Mario Mendoza, who also became a hitting coach after his playing days were done, are classic examples of the rule.

    Mr. Rowson has taught Castro how to hit .189. That’s what Starlin is hitting for July. Since taking over with his new philosophy, Castro is hitting .241, and rapidly declining in every offensive category.

    Let’s see how his OBP has been helped…2011…..341 OBP…..432 slugging…..307 BA What’s wrong with that?

    June 12-date…..8 BB and 20 K… OBP has declined to .288.
    How about slugging? Is he hitting with more power?Answer: of course not. .302 for July.

    Stolen Bases? Has the new approach cleared his mind to be a better thief? No, he’s 1 for his last 5 attempts since Rowson took over. [And yes I know that Rowson is a batting coach and not a base coach....I'm just showing you the decline].

    Between Sveum’s approach and Rowson’s advice, the Cubs are working at wrecking a future star player.

    • Tony_Hall

      Ever heard of a young player going through a bad stretch…it doesn’t always have to be the team’s fault.

    • http://theboardridersuite.wordpress.com/ Theboardrider

      You figured out their master plan! Ruin our best players.
      You are completely blinded by your distaste for these guys. I think you should sit down and make a gratitude list of the things they’ve done that you do like, then focus on that. Theo will be around for a long time and probably bring a large flag-laden trophy to the northside. I suggest you focus on the positive or switch to the Sox.

      • paulcatanese

        Not really fair to Rip, he is just voiceing his opinion.
        I just feel it dosent mean one is not a Cub fan if they dis-agree with what Theo does or does not do. I have had a lot of dis-agreement with some moves and agreement with some of the moves, dosent mean I am not a Cub fan.
        One cannot blame a long time fan(myself as well) to have doubts about the new regime and just trust them without question, it takes a while to get “in the mood” of new things that have been tried over the years and has not worked, we all will come around, but as everyone says give Theo some time, I feel the same way about the fans who are not 100% in agreement with Theo.

        • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

          From Jon Heyman: Nationals said trying hard on Dempster. Braves in, & Tigers may be, too. 1 gm still thinks Dodgers still favorite tho

    • cc002600

      Rip……you make some good points, but let’s give it time. I think he is going through transition process of trying to be more selective…. you can’t him expect to hit the ground running with that.

      Also, his fielding is much, much better, which is HUGE.

      All the people that wanted him to be moved to another position can now zip it. To me, that was ridiculous, and now we see why. He should be their SS for the next 10-15 years.

    • J Daniel

      Rip – who should they have hired, really?

      • Ripsnorter1

        I’m not sure. I am sure that Team Theo, specifically Sveum and Theo himself, are pressuring Castro to take more pitches, work the count, garner more walks. Sveum has publicly called Castro out a couple of times about his fielding, seemingly threatening to send him down or bench him if he didn’t improve. Too much mental pressure can destroy a young player.

        Let me give you a case in point….the Cubs had a young pitcher who could really bring it. His name was Bill Caudill. But the Cubs decided he needed to be a curveball specialist. So the pitching coach was going to change him and his approach. They got him so goofed up that he could no longer bring the fastball. So he lost his plus-plus major league fastball, his plus curve ball, and he became very hittable. His era climbed from 2.19 to 5.81. So they dealt him away to the Yanks for nothing (Pat Tabler, whom they also threw away for nothing). Caudill goes 12-9 with a 2.35 ERA and 26 saves for Seattle.

        So too much pressure from the coaching staff/GM office can ruin a young player.

    • triple

      I can see your point, but it’s like you’re attacking and using 1 month of evidence that coincides literally with the first slump of a 22 yr old players’s young career. That’s a very small sample size. Yet, many others on the team have made great improvements on the offensive side of the ball over the last month and you ignore that fact completely. Starlin hasn’t had to make much adjustments before. And now they are trying to get him to change his approach a little bit. He’s 22 years old and facing big league pitching. He doesn’t get to work on this in the minors like a guy like Anthony Rizzo had the opportunity for 2.5 months. Castro has already proven that he is a quality big-league hitter. Be patient, it may take a little time, and hopefully he gets through it. But I do know what you are saying – He’s a free swinger and kind of a bad ball hitter (just like Vladamir Guerrero), so they should have just left him alone.

  • J Daniel

    Most of their moves, IMO, have been a win. Let’s remember how BAD they were last year.
    1. Draft pick for Aram = win (want him back? he is avail).
    2. Draft pick for Pena = win.
    3. Big Z for a bag f balls = win by subtraction (not like Z is lighting it up which was most of our fear).
    4. DeJesus is a decent signing due to cheap stop gap with no no trade = slight win.
    5. Maholm is a very good signing (even if he ends up a sell high short term) = win.
    6. Marshall trade still to early but IMO it is a win as they sold before he left and Russell has filled in nicely.
    7. Even Camp has been a solid cheap signing = win.
    8. Stewart trade is the only loss I can see and I don’t think what they gave up, in the long run, is going to bite them in the buttocks.
    9. Oh, Rizzo will end up being a HUGE Sandburg type win.

    Maybe Gonzalez and Flaherty will be questioned, we will see. The roster management was a bit strange but with fringe players does it really matter. I sort of looked at it a different way – they are willing to make quick changes if they think they were wrong or if they think they found better. Most will not do that .

    There are moves, one could argue, that would have made them more competitive this year, maybe. But let me ask you this – are they in better shape now than they were 1 year ago?

    • cubs1967

      not sure how draft picks can be a win; if they don;t make the majors then it;s a wash. didn’t want those guys back and did not get anything back.
      neither dejesus nor maholm are future assets. neither will bring much in a trade. if it doesn;t help long term; it’s a temp fill-in; i.e. a wash.
      stewat was a waste and colvin looks pretty good-bad.
      camp-no trade value; no future asset.
      marshall has another year of ERA below 3. saffelt is junk. torreyes is still in high A ball; yrs away from knowing of any value. t wood has had 6 weeks of good starts; far from a sure thing. for major league help; marshall has proven to be more for the reds to date.
      rizzo is a win-but it cost them cashner.
      the real future assets will be what they get for dempster and/if garza gets traded.

      • EqDoc

        And the glass is half-empty…

      • triple

        Let me paraphrase one of your last statements: “Rizzo is a win, but it costs them a talented prospect who’s spent more time on the DL over the last 2.5 years than actual playing time.” Lets see, last year, 1 start and put on DL. This year, after 2 months as a RP, got 1 start and back to the DL. It’s a good thing Rothchild isn’t his pitching coach or he’d be leading the league in towel throw drills.

        • triple

          I got a question. How many of you guys got jobs in the MLB? Because you all rip apart prospects and farm systems (not just ours, but other teams too) like you watch all these guys play everyday and work with them and give them tips, but they are buffoons or something, as you hate most of them. STOP acting like the professional opinion on 18-25 year old kids who have a way more fun life than you got.

          Seriously, some of you think we are no better off this year, compared to the last how many years of poor hustle, poor defense, poor on-field decisions, lousy pitching, and bad hitting. Compare the team we field to what he have in the past! Not the names on the jersey, or the kids in the system, but how they are playing on the field! When I compare the play on the field I see a night and day difference from years past, and it’s refreshing. I see hustle, great defense, and great pitching. Yes, we still need to hit better w/ RISP, but that’s improved a lot lately. It’s unfortunate we will see the pitching go, but I think it’s obvious that other players will only be put on the 25 man roster because they are deserving to play for a ML team. No, the results haven’t always been the best, but they are fielding a team that is still learning some things, but they play with heart. It’s obvious to me that Theo & Co. will provide Sveum with players to put on the field that are improving the team. Why do some of you refuse to see that.

          Who cares if Marshall is gone and being paid even more money by the Reds for the next 3 years? We are paying 3 relief pitchers less money to hold down the 7th and 8th innings better than the Cubs bullpen did last year. And if one of the guys we receive in the trade helps fill another position (Wood), then it looks like a win to me. And if one of those prospects is playing and contributing for the team in another year or 2, while Marshall is overpaid as he declines from heavy workloads over the last couple years, then it’s a big win for the Cubs.

          • http://theboardridersuite.wordpress.com/ Theboardrider

            Well said…

          • paulcatanese

            You’re first paragraph deserves an answer, what you may know or not know is that a lot of the posters on this site have pretty good credentials and know what they are talking about.
            Just because they are not on a major league payroll does not mean that they are knowlegable about the game.

          • cubtex

            Yep. And that is what a blog site like this is for. To critique and discuss options for our favorite team!

        • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

          From Jon Paul Morosi: Cubs dialogue on Ryan Dempster remains heaviest with Dodger. But there’s time for another team to put together an overwhelming offer.

        • cubtex

          So his career is written in stone at 25? Go play the lottery this weekend since you can predict the future.

          • http://www.facebook.com/mike.simala Mike Simala

            What did he predict, he stated that the guy has been on the DL a bit, which is fact. Ur the one playing Whizzo predicting the future of the new Dominican signee before we even see anything from him.

          • http://theboardridersuite.wordpress.com/ Theboardrider

            Touche…

          • cubtex

            you want to touch him? hahahaha

          • cubtex

            I said that he has falsified 2 documents and his velocity dropped so I would not have touched him with a ten foot pole. And he got more money. You need to re-read the post!

          • http://www.facebook.com/mike.simala Mike Simala

            you also predicted ped use in his past ”
            I would bet took some ILLEGAL enhancers.” Direct quote from you. And you are assuming that since he had wrong name and age in the past that this is the case now. I read them all fine the first time.

          • cubtex

            Mike. If a guy is willing to cheat and lie…..chances are he is willing to take peds. Would you not agree? His velocity rose before being signed by Yanks and it has dropped since. It is obviously something that should be questioned with his sketchy background.

          • http://www.facebook.com/mike.simala Mike Simala

            maybe he wasnt hitting his marks throwin 98 and realized hes a better pitcher throwin it 93-95. The point is we dont know. He lied about his age and name, that doesnt make him a cheater. A lie about ones age and taking peds are 2 very different things, I would not agree that just cause you do one that youd be willing to do the other.

          • cubtex

            Well we disagree.

          • triple

            Haha, thanks Mike. Yeah tex, please show me where I made a prediction on any matter here. I don’t play the lottery. I’d rather give my $1 to a homeless guy. What I see is that Theo and Jed took a gamble trading away an injury prone talented prospect for a guy who had a terrible call up last year. Before Rizzo was brought up the Cubs were playing around a .333 winning %. With Rizzo, they are winning at .750%. Is it even possible for Cashner to help the Cubs win at that clip? In Cashner I see a RP who’s ERA has trended upwards since the beginning of the season and is a guy who is meant to be a starter, but isn’t durable enough. In total this year he is 3-3 w/ 6 holds (no saves) and 4 blown saves. The Cubs have 3 middle relievers who are having a better season than that. Rizzo already has something like 5 game winning RBI’s. I’ll make a prediction for ya buddy. I love Kerry Wood, but Cashner won’t even have as good a career as him, and I think Cashner will be lucky if he even has as good of a career as Mark Prior if they keep using him as a starter.

            Its funny to me how the haters will respond to my posts but always avoid answering my questions. You make these absurd statements that have no foundation and never do anything to back it up. And once again, very poor reading comprehension tex (i.e. inferring that I’ve predicted the future in any previous post). Please tell me what school system you’ve grown up in so I can be sure to never raise children there.

          • cubtex

            He’s 25 freakin years old with a 100 mile arm. As I have said…..I love Rizzo and would do the trade again….but that doesn’t mean Cashner will not be a very very good pitcher. He hasn’t had surgery. Obviously, you have never played the game…like many of you fantasy geeks….but most pitchers will have some issues at some point. Roy Halladay had similar issues at same age. And step up. Give a $5 bill at least to a honeless guy. With your fine education you should be making at least a couple hundred thousand a year. My poor education only lets me be responsible for 25 families. I don’t want anyone questioning my business decisions. I am like the Theo of Austin! Hahaha

          • http://www.facebook.com/mike.simala Mike Simala

            He never said Cashner wouldnt amount to anything, you made that assumption. He said as it stands right now the Rizzo trade is a win for us. You still fail to read it properly.

          • triple

            Geeezz… my damn internet sucks and just had a long reply that didn’t get through.

            Anyway, short story now- played ball through my freshman year in highschool. Played 3rd base and pitched. Never could throw above mid 70′s, but had good control (never pitched on the high school team though). I was always a good contact hitter, but something happened my freshman year and I couldn’t hang any more. I slumped at the beginning and struck out a bunch. My first hit in high school was a grand slam though (it hit the top of the fence and bounced over, and the only HR I ever hit). I mainly fought through 10 pitch at bats fouling off all the pitches I couldn’t handle, just to get a walk. I got frustrated and quit after the season. My junior year I had my eyes tested for the first time and needed glasses badly, so that probably was part of it. And I only did fantasy league baseball for 2 years recently (won both leagues), but some of the people were just way too competitive and it wasn’t fun. So I quit. Not gonna go into detail the 2nd time around on typing this. Anyway, I see you got a sense of humor, at least.

            Cashner has shown he belongs in the big leagues and has a lot of upside, but he’s also showing alot of durability issues which is a big warning sign that his career may not be long. He’s a prospect, which has a small probability of great success (kinda like the $1 lottery ticket, apparently you buy the $5 lottery tickets)! Halladay is a good example of a pitcher who has thrived after arm problems, but that is really the rare exception. He’s one pitcher out of 12 times 30 different teams over the last 15 years who has moved past arm troubles at a young age and has been a star in the major leagues. Are there many more you know of? And how many of these guys are there that don’t make it in the big leagues? I know there are many more of them.

          • J Daniel

            I will respond and will answer your questions :)!

      • J Daniel

        They did at least get draft picks which is better than letting them wak with no return. Yes, they should have been traded last year but Theo and boys were not here then. Also the return would have been low level prospects worse than the picks. Also, I don’t see how you say Maholm isn’t an asset, he is pitching pretty well and winning games which is the reason you have him. You want more Coleman?

        • http://theboardridersuite.wordpress.com/ Theboardrider

          Agreed on Maholm. He’s a quality 4th or 5th starter and cheap! Good signing. Overall Theo has done more good than bad for sure.

    • paulcatanese

      Are they in better shape than last year. Well on paper and the record they are not, almost identical wins and loss’es.
      But the players they have, and you mentioned them, have a better upside than last year.
      So I would have to say yes, they are in better shape this year.
      But, the jury is out on the record for the year until the trades are complete.

  • Tony_Hall

    2B Ronald Torreyes is putting together a good pair of months. Two more hits raised his average in July to .322 after he hit .330 in June.

    • http://www.facebook.com/mike.simala Mike Simala

      He sure is, just needed a little adjustment period. Him and Travis make that Marshall trade look better and better as the year goes on.

      • J Daniel

        Agree but everyone was crying at the time.

        • http://www.facebook.com/mike.simala Mike Simala

          I wasnt, i was on here posting under Hoosierboy3423 saying how good Torreyes looked as a prospect at a postion of need for us. And backing up Travis wood, who had like 3 or 4 bad outtings last year that skewed his numbers quite a bit. I really liked the deal in a rebuild year where having a top setup guy wasnt something crucial for us to have this year. We got top value from him in what could be our future 2b, note i said could be. And a #3 starter in Travis wood. Sappelt could be a solid bench player as he has a good track record of knowing how to hit and can play all OF positions. We got very good value for Marshall and I thought so at the time and still feel as though we came out ahead in that one. Relief pitchers come along all the time as we see guys like Frank Batista developing in the minors and could slide into the spot that Marshall occupied later this year, or even into the closers role.

          • cubtex

            Jays just made a 10 player trade with the Astros. Scratch them off the Matt Garza watch.

          • http://www.facebook.com/mike.simala Mike Simala

            that may not be all for the Jays, they didnt give up much in that deal, and didnt get a sp whos controlable past this year back with Happ. Plus they do appear to need more than just one starting pitcher to round things off. This could just be the tip of the iceberg for Toronto.

          • http://www.facebook.com/mike.simala Mike Simala

            im sorry Happ is arb eligible for the next 2 seasons, so he is somewhat controllable past this year.

          • John_CC

            JA Happ is not a difference maker in the rotation. And who knew Brandon Lyon was still playing? Though a lot of players are moving, this isn’t really a significant trade. The Blue Jays didn’t really get better.

          • daverj

            Maybe, but I’m not sure acquiring a back end rotation guy like Happ means the Jays are no longer interested in adding a #2 starter.

      • John_CC

        Wood has already proven he can be an effective #4 starter, maybe a 3 when he matures. He is 25 years old (I think, he’ no older) and with the team for a few more years. I don’t think there is any (reasonable) argument to be made that the deal wasn’t a good move.

    • J Daniel

      Maybe the Marshall trade will end up a good one.

  • http://www.facebook.com/mike.simala Mike Simala

    on another note, two pitchers who have been disappointments this year have swapped places, Jonathan Sanchez takes his talents to the Mile high city and Jeremy Guthrie goes to KC, I think KC gets the better end of this deal here.

    • daverj

      Guthrie is more likely to have value, but Sanchez has more upside if he can ever put it all togteher.

      • http://www.facebook.com/mike.simala Mike Simala

        oh yeah for sure. KC had nothing to lose in this move already having DFAd Sanchez. Guthrie wasnt workin out in Colorado but had a decent year last year in Baltimore. Solid move with no risk involved.

  • Aaron

    The Jays-Astros trade wasn’t a big deal, unless the PTBNL is one of Marisnick, D’Arnaud (unlikely since another catcher was included), Syndergaard, Aaron Sanchez, Nicolino, etc. It was mostly a swap of average players.

    I will say this, however….the Cubs absolutely have to start pulling the trigger on deals, or teams will move on

    • Tony_Hall

      Buster Olney is also talking about the pitching market.

      http://insider.espn.go.com/mlb/blog/_/name/olney_buster/id/8183488/paul-maholm-ryan-dempster-pitching-trade-targets-mlb

      Paul Maholm was drafted nine years ago and has pitched in more than 200 games in the big leagues, so the book on him is well-established. Left-hander with a below-average fastball who has to mix his pitches to win.But before the trade deadline every year, teams will still send scouts to watch pitchers like Maholm because they’re looking for a hot hand. A hitter in the midst of an offensive burst. A pitcher who has made an adjustment that’s fueling a hot streak, or has started throwing a pitch that’s working for him.

      Like an NFL team looking for a kicker who is on a roll, MLB teams seek a quick fix, and one great start — or a very short series of strong outings — can make a difference to clubs this time of year.Maholm has a career ERA well over 4.00, but he is pitching well right now. At 30 years old, he is making his mistakes down in the strike zone, an evaluator says, rather than up. For a soft thrower like Maholm, that can make an enormous difference.Maholm is making $4.75 million this year, has a $6.5 million option for next season and has thrown well for most of this season. In fact, since his first two starts of the season, in which he allowed 12 earned runs in eight innings, he has an ERA of 3.32, with only eight homers surrendered in 97.2 innings. He’s allowed only three earned runs in his last 30.1 innings, with four walks and 20 strikeouts.He doesn’t have the stuff of a Cole Hamels, of course, or the AL East pedigree of Matt Garza, or the ceiling of a Zack Greinke. But at this time of year, teams are looking for help, and Maholm looks like he could help.

      Meanwhile: the Dodgers remain in the mix for Ryan Dempster.But sources say that as of Friday morning, the Dodgers and Cubs haven’t found common ground. Los Angeles is trying to keep a high number of its top prospects off limits, and the Cubs are having talks with other, more aggressive teams.The Cubs might be scrambling to fill their rotation in the last two months because Dempstermight be traded today, to the Dodgers; Garza could follow in the next 11 days, with Boston being a major player in the trade talks; and Maholm could draw interest from teams that see substance in his turnaround.The funny thing is that the Cubs are red hot these days, with 14 victories in their last 19 games.A rival executive about the Cubs: “They’re going to trade anyone who has value.”

      • http://www.facebook.com/mike.simala Mike Simala

        Maybe since talks with the Dodgers have died down for Dempster, Maholm will go there. Id do the Gould, Withrow deal for him. Maholm would seem to have that added value of a very manageable team option for next season. Maybe this would be the Dodgers fall back option? Aside form the 2 bad starts to open the year Paul has been good and could bring that type of a return back for us. That type of return is much more reasonable for a guy like Maholm vs a guy like Dempster.

      • paulcatanese

        Unfortunatly that seems to be the truth.

  • Tony_Hall

    Jayson Stark in Rumblings & Grumblings talking about the trade market for pitchers.

    http://espn.go.com/mlb/story/_/page/rumblings120720/examining-potential-trade-market-starting-pitchers

    Our guys.

    3) Matt Garza

    Greinke isn’t the only starter out there with issues. Garza can be a mystery himself. (“He’s got top-of-the-rotation stuff,” said an official of one team. “But he’s not a real top-of-the-rotation pitcher.”)What Garza offers, though, is two very attractive qualities in this market: (A) controllability (can’t be a free agent until after next year) and (B) the stuff to shut down anybody’s lineup (23-15 lifetime, with a 3.39 ERA, against the American League East). So he figures to be a hot commodity, especially if Hamels comes off the board.Chances he gets traded: 85 percent.

    5) Ryan Dempster

    Ryan Dempster#46 Starting Pitcher
    Chicago Cubs2012 STATSGM14W5L3BB25K75ERA1.86
    It isn’t every trading deadline that you can deal for a starter who hasn’t given up a run since May. But that’s why Dempster is such a hot ticket these days, after five consecutive starts — and 33 consecutive innings — of doughnuts. Nobody on this list is pitching better than he is. So no wonder the Cubs are pushing to move him this week and asking for a high-ceiling pitching prospect if you want him.”Here’s the problem,” said an executive of one team that has scouted Dempster heavily. “He’s leading the league in ERA, so they want par value back. But in reality, he’s a middle-to-end-of-the-rotation pitcher, and you’ve only got him for a couple of months. So is it worth what you’re being asked to give up?” The Dodgers, Tigers, Braves and Nationals all appear to be debating that as we speak.Chances he gets traded: 99 percent.
    Maholm is mentioned as “in the showroom”.

    • John_CC

      Do you think Garza is the kind of competitor that rises to the competition and performs better when it is needed? I mean, the AL East stats are really impressive. That is when he was on a winning team, playing in important games and generally in a “winning environment”. Which is the exact opposite of his entire short tenure with the Cubs. His competitive nature and talent are not in question, I guess I am saying that he is better when he surrounded by a winning team, when he is the honest #2-3 starter in a rotation, pitching behind a true ace, and doesn’t put all the pressure on himself to be the ace.

      I think he’s poised for a really good run to the end of the season, particularly on a contending team.

      • Tony_Hall

        I would have to agree with that. But if you look at his career number, his best year was last year, and this year is really his more his baseline. He has been a hot and cold pitcher most years.

        • cubtex

          This year he has a career best 1.172 Whip as of today.

          • Tony_Hall

            Yes he does, but he also has a career high in ERA, which means he must not be getting the outs when men are on base like he has in the past.

            He also has a career high in Errors throwing to 1st :)

          • cubtex

            you are a saber guy. Top 20 pitcher in Whip. Top 20 pitcher in K/9. He has been unlucky with BAIP. That should even itself out and his ERA will lower.

          • Tony_Hall

            WAR – YTD
            Fangraphs 1.2
            Baseball reference 0.4

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    From Ken Rosenthal – Source: Dempster talks could “drag on a few more days.” Scheduled to pitch for Cubs tonight in St. Louis.

    • John_CC

      I’d rather have him start for the Cubs vs. the Cards tonight than get swapped across to the other clubhouse and come out with a Red Bird on his jersey. And what if he pitched against the Cubs in the series? I hate the thought…

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    From Bruce Levine: Dodgers continue hot pursuit of Dempster. Offer still on table. Hoping to get deal done ASAP.

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    From Jon Paul Morosi – Source: Tigers remain interested in Cubs righty Ryan Dempster – who, by the way, is still scheduled to pitch tonight.

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    From Jon Paul Morosi – Source with knowledge of Dodgers – Cubs dialogue says “50/50” chance teams get deal done for Ryan Dempster. Still discussing prospects.

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    From Jon Paul Morosi: If Cubs trade trade Ryan Dempster to Dodgers they are likely to get one or two young arms in return. Chicago focus is pitching.

    Tonight’s starting lineup was released … and Dempster is in
    it

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    From Buster Olney: A handful of teams dabbling in Ryan Dempster trade talks,and some
    proposals have been exchanged. Talk will continue after he starts
    tonight.

    • http://www.facebook.com/mike.simala Mike Simala

      Well it gives Demp the opportunity to own the Scoreless innings mark as a Cub all by himself.

  • cubs1967

    why start dempster? skip him till sunday. what if a fluke happens tonite and he gets hurt; bunts a ball into his face, gets run over at 1st covering the bag, his spikes catch on the mound?………….if team theo thinks by sunday he’s gone; it’s FREAKIN’ stupid to start him tonite.

    • Tony_Hall

      Do you think or do you know?

      It they knew, for sure, it would probably mean the deal is done.

      • cubs1967

        the point is why start him?…….just sayin’……….cubbie occurences ………

        • Tony_Hall

          Because it’s his turn, and it’s what he does. Of course there is risk, that is the leverage that the other teams have on the Cubs, is they have the deadline of July 31st, and the Cubs have an internal deadline of his next start.

          No more Cubbie occurences…Lou’s gone…

        • triple

          Further proof that the team is trying to win. Demp gives them the best chance to win tonight’s game, especially against K. Lohse, who by the way was drafted on the Cubs and has 4 or 5 good seasons to show over the last 10 years or so.

  • paulcatanese

    Meant to tell you earlier Brian, good post,you always manage
    to stir up the troops, like that.

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    From Buster Olney: In the ever-changing trade landscape: Dodgers and Cubs haven’t found common ground in Dempster talks Other teams being aggressive

  • J Daniel

    They don’t like the Dodger prospects either.