Weekend Update … Cubs Off-Season Is Not Over

Jed Hoyer said Thursday that the Cubs off-season is not over yet and while the Cubs’ GM did not drop any hints as to what they are working on, it could be a very interesting couple of weeks leading up to the Cubs Convention. Theo Epstein and Jed Hoyer have to make at least one roster move in the near future in order to officially add Carlos Villanuevathe Cubs’ roster currently stands at 40 players. They are believed to be looking for an outfielder, a utility infielder and could still add a piece to the bullpen … and if the reports are correct, the Cubs are still listening on offers for Alfonso Soriano.

Hoyer recently said that “nothing is close” but they are looking for ways to improve the offense after spending the winter focused on adding pitching.

Dontrelle Willis

The Cubs signed Dontrelle Willis to a minor league contract that does not include a non-roster invite to Spring Training. If Willis performs well early on in camp, he could end up in big league camp before the end of the Cactus League schedule. This is a no-risk contract for the Cubs and if not for the fact it is Dontrelle Willis, it would not be news. Teams sign players to this type of contract all of the time that does not make headlines.

Willis has been working hard to get back into the game after announcing his retirement last July. Willis confirmed the signing on his Twitter account and thanked the Cubs for giving him another opportunity.

Non-Roster Invites to Spring Training

The Cubs list of non-roster invites to big league camp increased this past week. The Cubs re-signed right-handed pitchers Jaye Chapman and Zach Putnam. Chapman’s deal includes a NRI and Putnam’s should as well.

So far the list of players that will be in camp on non-roster invitations includes: Jaye Chapman, Zach Putnam, Jensen Lewis, Cory Wade, Hisanori Takahashi, Brad Nelson, Andrew Carpenter, Blake Parker, J.C. Boscan, Brian Bogusevic, Alberto Gonzalez, Johermyn Chavez and Edwin Maysonet.

The full list of non-roster invitees to Spring Training should be released soon.

Chattin’ with Bruce Levine

Mr. Talkin’ Baseball held his weekly chat last Thursday afternoon on ESPN Chicago. Here are a few of the highlights:

  • Bruce Levine pointed out that Edwin Jackson is good for the Cubs right now and is a movable commodity in the future. Jackson is the only legitimate 200-inning starter in the Cubs’ rotation and he could be around for a couple of years.
  • Levine called the Alfonso Soriano to the Phillies trade rumors “a tremendously old rumor” and nothing came from the discussions between the two teams six weeks ago.
  • If the Cubs can find viable suitors for Carlos Marmol and Alfonso Soriano, Levine thinks they could be traded before the start of the season.
  • From what Levine can gather, Welington Castillo and Dioner Navarro will be the Cubs catching tandem when the season starts (Note: Castillo is out of minor league options, Clevenger has three remaining. If Castillo is healthy, he will begin the year with the Cubs with Clevenger getting his reps with the I-Cubs.)
  • A couple of scouts that Levine is very friendly with told him that Jeff Samardzija was the most improved pitcher they saw from April to September last year. Samardzija has been in Arizona preparing for Spring Training since November.
  • Carlos Marmol and prospects to the Tigers for Rick Porcello makes sense to Bruce Levine.
  • The Cubs possibly trading for Justin Upton is just a rumor at this point. The Cubs do not have the inventory of young players to trade for an Upton or Giancarlo Stanton. According to Levine, trading Starlin Castro or Javier Baez would set the Cubs plans back for competing in 2014 and 2015.

  • The Cubs are open to any deal that would make them better. If they could add a guy like Mike Olt and a young pitcher or two, they certainly would entertain a trade with the Rangers for Matt Garza. Texas has been trying to trade for Garza for the past couple of years.
  • If Brett Jackson is successful with his new swing over the first few months of the season in Iowa, Levine thinks the Cubs will call him up and put him in either right field or centerfield. Right now the Cubs outfield is “very much a stopgap situation.”
  • Levine has not heard the rumor that the Cubs would send Alfonso Soriano and Brett Jackson to the Red Sox for Jacoby Ellsbury.
  • Levine has heard that the Cubs plan on Javier Baez playing the upcoming season at shortstop.

News, Notes and Rumors

The Dodgers’ spending spree continued Friday night when they agreed to terms on a one-year deal with lefty reliever J.P. Howell for $2.85 million. Howell’s deal reportedly includes a incentives package. The Cubs were rumored to be interested in signing Howell.

According to a report from Comcast SportsNet, the Cubs are not viewed as having a match with the Tigers for Rick Porcello.

FanGraphs took a look at the Edwin Jackson signing.

Alfredo Amezaga signed a minor league contract with the Dodgers that included an invite to big league camp. Amezaga spent last season with the Iowa Cubs.

According to a report from Ken Rosenthal, the Rangers signed Lance Berkman to a one-year contract. While the Cubs have not been connected to Berkman this off-season, if Texas closes the deal with the former Astro, Yankee and Cardinal, it could take away a possible landing spot for Alfonso Soriano … and the Diamondbacks asked the Orioles for young pitchers in return for Jason Kubel according to Jon Heyman but Baltimore is disinclined to do that.

The ‘Frustrated Four’, as Ken Rosenthal labeled them, are having a hard time finding jobs this winter. Teams have not signed Kyle Lohse, Michael Bourn, Adam LaRoche or Rafael Soriano after they decided to pass on the qualifying offers they received from their previous teams. Kyle Lohse said he’s had a pretty quiet off-season and he thinks it is because “teams value that draft pick and the money that comes along with it.” Jim Bowden reported during his show on Thursday that he is hearing no deals are imminent for Michael Bourn, Rafael Soriano or Kyle Lohse.

According to Ken Rosenthal, the Padres and D-Backs discussed a Justin Upton for Chase Headley swap since July … but those talks did not progress. Arizona continues to talk to the Rangers and Mariners about Upton.

Former Cub farmhand, Luke Sommer, signed a minor league deal with the Tigers. The Cubs selected the southpaw in the 30th round in the 2007 draft.

Pitchers and catchers report to Fitch Park in 35 days

Follow ChicagoCubsOnline on Twitter: @TheCCO and @TheCCO_Minors

  • Ripsnorter1

    Rick Porcello…4 yrs in the show already at age 24….has a big WHIP of 1.417. Last year set all-time career high of 1.531…his WHIP has gone up every single year of his career….he’s getting worse, not better…they are mashing him…691 career IP…800 career hits allowed….pitches to contact….has only 384 K’s in 691 IP….made 31 starts in 2012, but only 13 were quality starts. He pitched 176 innings in 31 starts…that’s just 5.2 IP per start….gave up–you’d better sit down for this–226 hits. Why yes, Luther: he led the league in hits allowed.

    SO let’s see: Levine wants to throw Marmol at them with prospects to boot? He must be drinking again. WITH THE CUBS’ ANEMIC OFFENSE???? The Tigers have mashers in their lineup (Fielder .313 BA, Cabrera .330 BA, Dirks .322 BA, Austin Jackson .300 BA). Starlin Castro led the Cubs in BA with a .283 (Rizzo .285 but not enough ABs). We were 28th in MLB in runs scored. He wouldn’t win 3 games for us!

    FORGETABOUTIT!

    He’s in the Volstad and Feldman category. What on earth are you thinking????

    • Tony_Hall

      I know he should be kicked out of baseball, because you have deemed him to be bad….but, he is groundball pitcher, with a bad defensive infield.

      Not a good match.

      I am not saying I am sold on Porcello, but put him in the right situation, with an above average infield and a grounds crew who mows the grass the day after he pitches and his numbers will improve.

      • Ripsnorter1

        Read it again, Tony.

        I never said “kick him out of baseball.” I said, “He doesn’t fit in Wrigley, with no offense and not much bullpen (after you deal Marmol away, along with Solar, et al)–to get this guy.

        • Tony_Hall

          I know you didn’t, it is just the way you beat up players and make them sound like they should be playing in an independant league because they are so bad.

          • Ripsnorter1

            Yeah.

            He might not be in ML baseball much longer. Another season like last, and he might be done.

        • Tony_Hall

          You are also missing the point, that if you still had Rizzo, Barney, Castro and Stewart, he would have a very good infield defense in which to throw lots of ground balls. His numbers would improve.

      • Dorasaga

        But Porcello is not worth of Marmol plus ANY prospect, let alone prospect-s, unless the latter be low level throw-ins, and Dombrowski is willing to part with a LHP as a bonus on top of Ricky boy. Ripsy is selling his points tonight. :-))

        • Tony_Hall

          I agree. Not sure I would even want Porcello, as he doesn’t K enough batters for me. But I also don’t think he is worthless and has a pretty bad infield defense behind him. Either way, I won’t be adding him to my fantasy team, that is for sure.

  • Tony_Hall

    Our stop gap outfield….pretty much sums it up right there.

    Potentially traded
    Soriano we want to trade, and hopefully get something of value for him in return, if not he could be with us all the way to the end of 2014….not likely, but it could happen.

    DeJesus we could keep through this year then let him walk, or bring back on the CO. I am not sure that is a sure thing, most likely would depend on if BJAX is going to be able to fill an OF spot or not and if Schierholtz is able to be a good 3/4 OF. If BJAX can make contact, DeJesus will be traded July or August.

    Young guys with ????

    Schierholtz – He needs a good spring (non-guaranteed contract), but he should be around all year and with 2 more years of control (arbitration), he could be around for a few years.

    Sappelt – I could see him being around for awhile, as the 4th/5th OF, spot starter, etc. He hits lefties well and if he can improve against RH’s he could fill one of the 5 OF spots for many years, as he has 6 more years of control.

    Campana -Good chance he is in Iowa working on getting on base. Out of Schierholtz and Sappelt, he has the only plus skill, that if he can get on base enough, he could be a starter with that one plus skill.

    B Jackson – Let’s hope he has the Rizzo turnaround, though I don’t expect it to be as good. BJAX needs to make more contact as he does everything else well enough to be an everyday CF and has enough power to be moved to a corner spot if Szczur, Almora, etc make it to the show.

    After BJAX there is just not much talent that is close to be a starting major league caliber OF. Our potential starters, Soler, Almora, Szczur are still a few years at least away, and others like Vitters, Lake, etc will take a little time to adjust if they are moved off of their positions.

    That is why we have a stop gap OF. Now, it would not surprise me at all if the FO pulled off a trade to bring in an Upton.,…no, not an Upton, but more like Domonic Brown or similar type player. Upton would take an awful lot of our top prospects and/or Garza. I would much prefer to get SP for Garza. Bringing in a young player who has already has major league experience that has upside is a good risk, especially if we can do it without losing any long term asset type players and use short term assets to get that player.

    Now it would be nice if Schierholtz and Sappelt could form a productive platoon and BJAX could make enough contact and Soriano would duplicate last year or be traded for someone like Brown who, with a change of scenary and good health could become the player the Phillies have always thought he would become. We couuld have a productive, stop gap OF with some possible long term pieces.

    Only 3 cups of Cubbie kool-aide was used for the last paragraph…

    • Ripsnorter1

      Most “Kool-Aid-aholics” need an increasing amount to get drunk. You seem to need less and less….LOL.

      Look at Stanton. He could be our RF for 10 years. He’s only 23 years old. That means “he’s a young guy, with a lot of upside.” Neither you nor I know for sure what it would take to acquire him. But I think the Cubs’ FO ought to look seriously into it. Some say, “it’s too early to get a guy like that.” Why? Does that mean we ought to get rid of Castro and Rizzo because “it’s too early?” Of course not. Stanton should be around for ten years. 37 HRs last year and .290 BA ought to be more fun to watch than Luis Valbuena.

      Vitters: I have no hope that he’ll amount to anything. Can’t field. Not enough power. And apparently, can’t hit ML pitching.

      Jackson, if he could hit .210, will play some in the ML.

      I have no faith that Soriano will get traded away at any time or for anything at all. Oh, we might get a Zambrano trade….a pitcher working on a history making losing streak; or a hitter who fans like ….Brett Jackson. So I’d plan on him sticking around. He could be worth his keep if he continues like last year. He could still switch to a lighter bat and keep that bat speed up enough to survive.

      Sappelt: yeah, he can hit LHP, but he’s strictly platoon at the ML level. He managed only .266 in AAA Iowa–that’s in the PCL where offensive stats are inflated, too. Nah. Not a whole lot there. Sam Fuld is better….

      Schierholtz? He’s not the answer. If he has a good year, he might be as “good” as DeJesus–who isn’t the answer either. Stop gap material.

      Jed ought to get Stanton and have at least one piece going forward.

      • Tony_Hall

        I would love to have Stanton in RF. But I don’t think we are in the position to OUTBID other teams. That is what people mean by “it’s too early to get a guy like that”

        Teams like the Rangers (just an example) who are set almost every position for years, can trade away Olt, Profar, etc and it really wouldn’t hurt them. Or the could trade Olt and Andrus and once again it wouldn’t hurt them. The Cubs are just not able to offer as much.

        You are drinking another version of Cubbie Kool-Aide where you think we are able to make deals like this and not have teams who are much more set at the major league level and have minor league, major league ready talent to trade outbid us.

  • cubs1967

    why is Baez going to play SS at high A? Castro has that position covered. Not understanding.
    why would we want Mike Olt; Baez should be the 3B for the future.(we need pitching for Garza)
    Dejesus had a 1.7 WAR last year, he’s a 4th OF at best.(under 60 ribbies, below .500 SB/CS %, lousy slg % of .403.(RF is a power spot)
    Schierholtz had a 0.5 WAR. Bill James has him at 7 HR.29 RBI. for 2013. (only 285 at-bats so lets double it-still equals 2 starting OF that won’t drive in 60 runs)/
    Stewart sucks. No reason to have any hope. Best bet is Junior Lake tears up ST and he and Valbuena start the year at 3B.
    Barney is really a old-school defensive player.
    This offense is gonna make all the SP .500 at best; most below .500.
    Trading Sori could leave this line-up to break records in lowest runs scored and most shut-outs in Cubs history.
    Rizzo-Castro are gonna start having bad habits it this continues.

    • Tony_Hall

      Baez will maintain the most value playing SS. You don’t move guys with his bat off of SS until they can no longer play there. You don’t change guys in A Ball based on what the major league team has already. Have you seen Texas move Profar? He is at AAA. Have they moved Olt? Both are blocked by guys who could be there for many years. We also don’t know if Castro won’t have to move in 2, 3, 5 years, etc.

      DeJesus had a 1.7 WAR…market value $8M…sounds like a brilliant move when you consider they have $10M committed total to him. Another year like last year and he will have given us enough value to bring him back next year for free.

      Your continued negativity is so much fun to follow…

      • Tom U

        Tony, see my post below.

        While Baez is an offensive talent, I don’t believe he should receive preferential treatment over others, especially when he may not play the position better. What about all of his teammates and pitchers who may suffer from his play at short? The nature of the minors is to try players out to see what you have

        • Tony_Hall

          Did all the teammates of Castro suffer while he was playing SS and making lots of errors learning the position?

          You can call it preferential treatment if you like, but I call it knowing which players have the talent to play MLB already and having them on a plan to develop.

          I expect Baez and Saunders to both play SS at Daytona, until Baez moves up to AA and Alcantara moves up to Iowa.

          • Tom U

            Call this some inside information, but I know that there were some players who were quite upset with a player playing out of position and committed over 20 errors in the minors last season.

          • Tony_Hall

            Players get upset, especially with a guy as polarizing as Baez. But to me this is a big difference in minor league philosophy. If you want to win more minor league games, than do what is best for that team. If you want to develop major league players, you have to identify the talent and play them accordingly.

            Let’s say the Cubs are set on Castro at SS (they are) and that they feel that Baez won’t be a 3B and won’t play the OF good enough, then isn’t the best way to maximize his value is to be able to call him a SS that has an amazing bat?

          • Tom U

            I did not say the player was Baez, it was someone else.

          • Tony_Hall

            The only players to make over 20 erros at one position on any one team.

            3B – Vitters 21
            SS – Lake 24
            SS – Alcantara 30
            2B – Devoss 28

            And you have Alcantara as better than Baez, so I would assume he is not out of position, and Vitters may not stick at 3B, but he is not out of position.

            So that leaves Lake or Devoss…

          • Tony_Hall

            I am going with Devoss since he was in Peoria, where you were around the most.

          • cubs1967

            does Lake have any shot of starting out of spring training at 3b? especially if Stewart doesn’t/won’t hit? Lake tore up winter ball.

          • http://www.facebook.com/rich.hood.144 Rich Hood

            I personally think he has a shot at being our back up infielder and playing all over. Kind of a super sub role. He played all over the OF in winter ball and has the speed to handle center. IF he shows a consistent approach AB to AB he might open enough eyes to get on the roster like Barney did 2 years ago.

          • Tony_Hall

            Not sure if this was meant for Tom or me.

            ZERO chance.

            He will be at Iowa this year, as he hasn’t played any games at AAA and I would bet he would spend a good part of the year there and be a August/September call-up.

          • SuzyS

            Tony, You gave me the Zero chance statement a month ago…What if Stewart flames out and Lake is still raking in ST?

            I understand that Theo and company really want their prospects to get a full season at each level before bringing them up…But it is not all that unusual for a prospect to get a look-see out of AA ball.

            Odds are against it…but there is a chance.

          • Tony_Hall

            I believe they would go with Valbuena or a FA before rushing Lake to the majors.

            I will give you it is not ZERO, but I don’t see this regime, at this point in time, rushing the prospects that have a chance at being around and sticking in the majors.

          • cubs1967

            point well taken. that would make sense.
            (and create a typical “cubbie moment” if that happens in that castro and rizzo appear to be set for 10 yrs and the best bats in the minors play the same position in vogelbach and baez………..ouch!
            (i realize you trade them……..but no guarantee you get a 3b and OF or whatever that is as good).

          • Tony_Hall

            Not sure, but did I change your mind on something? It happens to all of us on here from time to time.

            I think Baez and Vogelbach bat’s will be tough to trade away, but they may do that down the road, as the return could be huge if they both keep hitting.

          • cubs1967

            as I live 30 minutes from Geneva; very excited about the Cubs being there in 2013.
            what is the projected starting line-up?
            voglebach-1b
            devoss=2b?(seems torreyes and villeneuva are creating a logjam).
            hernandez-ss
            canderleria-3b
            almora-OF
            who else in OF and C?
            thanks

          • Tom U

            As of right now, expect the majority of the positions to be taken by former Boise Hawks. That would mean

            1B – Vogelbach, Shoulders
            2B – Amaya
            SS – Hernandez
            3B – Candelario
            C- Contreras
            CF – Almora
            RF – Soler

            Left field is the big question mark. Candidates include Easterling, Dunston Jr., Rademacher, Chen, Zapata, and probably a few others.

          • Tony_Hall

            That is going to be fun to watch, but with low A ball, some of these guys won’t be around long.

          • cubs1967

            Soler hit well at low A; he”ll be gone in 2 months if he hits? I thought they would keep him with Baez.

          • SuzyS

            cubs1967…I’m envious that you’re only 30 minutes from Geneva…It will actually take me more time to get to Geneva than Wrigley…but like you…I’m excited to be able to see OUR guys locally.
            It will be interesting to get your take on our prospects first hand.

          • Tony_Hall

            cubs1967 – To show that after all is said and done we are all just Cub fans, I want to go to some games this year to watch that amazing lineup coming up from Boise, and would love to meet up with you at a game and I will buy the first beer!

          • cubs1967

            I hear ya. Yes, your point on Baez at SS makes sense.

      • cubs1967

        Dejesus ranked 13th in RF production in the NL 2012. Your contiuned smoking of the “blue hype” is equally fun.

        • Tony_Hall

          Not so much blue hype as different paths. You would have preferred the Dodgers path and I believe that the path the Cubs are on is a better way to build an organization.

        • Tony_Hall

          Also, he is a CF bat, that is better defensively in RF. Either way 1.7 WAR for $5/year is good value on the free agent market.

      • cubs1967

        maintain his value?
        that has zero to do with the goal of making him a MLB player. If Castro is already in place at SS and an all-star; it won’t do any good to have Baez play SS all the way up to the majors and then make him play 3rd?
        the minors is for groooming players; groom him at 3b. he’s still growing and fill-ing out; he’s going to be bigger physically than Castro and the Cubs need a 3b.

        • Tony_Hall

          So does that mean we should move Alcantara, Saunders, Baez, Hernandez, etc all from SS. If the minors are for grooming these guys into major league players we should move them as well, because they are all blocked by Castro. These are decisions for farther down the road.

          I am not saying he needs to play every game at SS, but maintaining his value is a something that is looked at, and is important. He needs to play at SS, 3B, and both corner OF spots. Even 2B, even though that negates his strong arm.

    • Tom U

      cubs1967, that is the million dollar question that I hope fans pepper management with at the Cubs Convention…Why is Javier Baez still lining up at shortstop?

      With Castro on a seven year deal, Arismendy Alcantara and Tim Saunders (both better defenders) ahead of him, and Marco Hernandez and Carlos Penalver (again, both better defenders) behind him, why not look at other positions he could help the club at?

      It is also good to note that they have a lot of hot-shots at shortstop in Frandy De La Rosa, Luis Acosta, Jhon Ortega, Jenner Emeterio, and Bryant Flete down in the DSL and VSL.

      • Tony_Hall

        Tom – How would you line up the SS at each level?

        • Tony_Hall

          I ask because natural SS are hard to come by, and we seem to have quite a few. But natural SS’s who can hit are even harder to find, and more valuable. Moving a good hitting SS off of SS and moving him to 3B or a corner OF spot changes the expectations on offense and now a player who may have had plus value, doesn’t have as much value in the new position.

          • Tom U

            Just because it is the position a player prefers or has always played doesn’t make him a “natural”.

            Although I’ve seen only him a limited amount of time at short, I feel that scouts have been drinking a lot of Kool-Aid about his abilities there.

          • Tony_Hall

            Fair enough, but I wouldn’t move him off of SS until he is much higher up in the system, or on the 25 man roster. Of course, he needs to play multiple positions I would like to see him at 3B, and corner OF.

          • daverj

            Perhaps another reason to keep Baez at SS is that it might increase his trade value. A SS with a bat bat is hard to find. At some point, the FO will use the farm system to deal for major leaguers.

          • SuzyS

            daverj

            I think that is what Tony’s been saying.

          • Meoli

            This is just for discussion, but what if Baez doesn’t or can’t get any better playing at short? Wouldn’t playing him there hurt his value?

          • Tony_Hall

            He got pretty good reviews in the AFL, which is usually full of guys near ready for the majors in the next year or two. He like Castro, Alcantara and most any SS in the minors make errors. If he shows he can’t play there, then they move him. But the longer he can stay there the better.

        • Tom U

          If it were up to me, the loser of the Edwin Maysonet-Alberto Gonzalez duel would wind up at Iowa.

          I would open Tennessee with Arismendy Alcantara, and Daytona with Tim Saunders. Marco Hernandez would be the opening day SS at Kane Co., and Carlos Penalver would do the same for Boise.

          Javier Baez would play a little short at Daytona, but would also see time at third, second, and outfield. I feel he has hit his ceiling at short, and would like to see what else he can do.

          • Tony_Hall

            Where do you see Lake lining up in Iowa?

          • Tom U

            I would not be surprised if he opens in left field. However, I do feel he will get some reps at short.

          • Tony_Hall

            Lake’s ticket to the majors is as a super sub. If he hits enough, than they can try to narrow down a position, but until then he needs to bring a bag full of gloves to the park.

      • cubs1967

        I was hoping you had an answer for Baez; my fear is they have already labeled him a SS? That just can’t be……….
        My only thought is he did struggle at high A and appears to have some bad habits as he has always crushed pitching on talent alone so maybe they want him to have a good year at high A(which is the great equalizer to projected future upside) and don’t want to mess with him and let him learn 3B at AA after a successful high A?

      • http://twitter.com/RichardAldeman Richard Jose Aldeman

        i think Theo is thinking about moving Castro 3B or 2B once Baez is ready for MLB. J.Lake is almost ready for MLB ,but theres not space for him, yess , hes playing LF in DWL , very well, I dont see Josh Vitters playing on MLB anymore AT HIGH LEVEL, i suggest to trade him in any deal, the kid lost compossure and would not be a star or better.MIKE OLT WILL BE A STAR , HES A PURE TALENT , IS HARD TO FIND a 4 TOOL 3B WITH POWER+EYE CONTACT + DEFENSIVE + ARM.THAT KID IS READY FOR MLB.

        the only minor leaguers i would trade : J.Vitters, Voggelbach, Villanueva

        • Brp921

          I wouldn’t jump to trade Voglebach he’s going to be a monster. In fact He would be the guy I wouldn’t trade.

        • Tony_Hall

          I don’t think Theo is worried about moving Castro when Baez is ready, until it is a lot closer to actually happening.

          Lake is almost ready, if you consider needing to get through AAA almost. Remember Rizzo dominated AAA his 1st time through and Vitters did as well. Yet both were well over matched the 1st in the majors.

          Mike Olt may or may not make it in major league baseball but to say he will be a star is a little bit premature.

          You would keep all the minor league players except Villanueva, who we just traded for, Vogelbach, who hits the cover off the ball and whose value won’t be at it’s highest until he keeps hitting up to the higher levels, and Vitters whose value is about as low as it has ever been. None of these 3 make any sense, to be the only ones you will trade.

  • SuzyS

    Neil and calicub,
    Thanks for the Frank Chance link yesterday. I read my brother that story, ( he lost his sight 3 years ago from diabetes), and he loved it.
    Thanks again.

    • calicub

      No problem @0965d68ca8619cc132f9d89cb333c1e7:disqus Hope your Brother enjoyed it. It was a very moving piece

    • Dorasaga

      Thank you, Suzy, for asking, or else I would never have crossed my time to such a wonderful history. Stay warm and safe with your family, with a good story and two pints. B-)

  • Ripken Boy

    An outfield of Soriano, DeJesus and Scherholz is not only terrible but not rebuilding. I would of given Campana 500 at bats before I signed Scherholz. I would rather see young outfielders play than mid level free agents.

    • Tony_Hall

      Actually it is rebuilding.

      Rebuilding isn’t using players who are in over their head, like Campana. He needs to prove he can get on base more often, before he can be an effective major league player. You can’t steal 1st.

      Rebuilding is using stopgap type players to fill roster and starting spots, versus signing a long term contract to a 30 something player who will be past his prime in a few years and not block legitamate prospects when they are ready to come up.

      Soriano would need to be gone if we actually had players ready to go, but all we have is BJAX and he needs another 2-3 months at AAA.

      DeJesus’s contract is up at the end of the year, and if needed we control if he comes back for next year.

      Schierholtz is another example of rebuilding. No commitment as his contract isn’t even guaranteed for this year. But if he makes the team, we have a player who is controlled for 2 more years.

      Both DeJesus and Schierholtz are tradeable if needed.

      Sappelt is another example of rebuilding. He is controlled for 6 more years.

      So, with all evidence to the contrary, this is what rebuilding looks like with the OF situation that was inherited.