Rambling About an Offensive Cubs Offense

Hello again everybody.  Can you hit a baseball?  Do you know how to swing a bat?  Can you bunt … go the other way (opposite field that is, not that there is anything wrong with that) … get it deep enough with a guy on third?

If you can do just ONE of those things two out of ten times then you may actually have a chance to play for the Chicago Cubs!!

It’s Friday, the Cubs have lost five out of six after a very promising week, and not even the silver linings seem that bright right about now … so let’s get to some rambling.

  • Another 8-inning masterpiece from Jeff Samardzija results in another Loss.  Good times, Shark … Very good, times.
  • Welcome back, Chin Salad!  Nice to have you in the rotato again.  Five innings, no runs, bullpen explosion.  Yep, sounds like an average Tuesday night in Cubdom.
  • It is May 24th and Cody Ransom is hitting .304 with 3 homers.  Wait, what?
  • Hey, Rizzo, this yo-yoing of your batting average is not so much fun to watch.  Probably less fun to experience, I get that, but come on, let’s stick around .290 for more than a week!!
  • David DeJesus is on pace to be the Cubs All-Star representative in July.  Think about it.   Go look at his numbers.  His slash line is .296/. 363/. 507 with 5 HR, 16 RBI and 3 steals.
  • Also, “Slash Line” sounds like something backstage at a GnR show in the 80’s.  And let’s not even get into … never mind.
  • He is the most complete player on the team right now.  And to think how many people were disgusted with his signing at two years for $10 million, with a club option for next year.
  • If you were upset about it, feel better.  You were totally wrong, but feel better.
  • Starlin needs to buck up and level out soon.  He has shown zero improvement, and yes, he should continue to improve.
  • I don’t know the kid, but it has always seemed like focus, or a lack of it, was his main issue.  Sveum basically said it is up to the kid to improve.  He has been a pro for three full years now.
  • Guess what?  The Cubs had the bases loaded with no outs on Wednesday night and didn’t score a run.  Not only did Ronnie roll over in his grave, he yelled at Pat as well.
  • Kevin Gregg:  12 G’s.  0.00 ERA.  6 for 6 Saves.  Yep, called it in March, right along with Louisville winning the tourney and Urlacher retiring.
  • And back into last place.  Just when the Cubs had me thinking they could be a third-and-a-half-place team, they went and brought me back to reality.  Good times.
  • My favorite stat:  Alfonso Soriano leads the Cubs with five stolen bases.  I think, in a way, that sums it up just perfectly.
  • It’s nice to see Almora back in action on the farm.   I just fear he may be one more play away from another injury.  I hope he holds up over time.  Then again, I remember hoping Bobby Brownlie would avoid injury as well.
  • If it were up to me, I would pick Appel if he is available.  Again, that is just me.  He is Major-League ready.
  • If the Cubs get an above-average prospect for Feldman, then McThoyer is owed an apology.  They take the brunt, but that would be a coup.
  • It will be interesting to see how the Brass plays their hand with Chin Salad.  If he is just lights out over the next two months, they could probably get a king’s ransom for him.  Or, they could go all in and sign him.  It will be fun to watch this play out over the next two months.
  • Brett Jackson is batting .254 with 35 strikeouts.  We always must temper our expectations with prospects.  A first-round draft pick is never the future, until the future arrives.  And even if he arrives, Marcus Giles runs into him and then he is hit with a line drive in the elbow.
  • And finally tonight, I am still wondering what would have happened if the Cubs held on to Sean Marshall. One World Series or two?

Happy Memorial Day to each and every one of you.  I hope you spend it with loved ones and always remember, cherish and appreciate the sacrifices brave men and women made for us.

And until next time …

Stay Classy Cubs Fans!!

Follow ChicagoCubsOnline on Twitter: @TheCCO and @TheCCO_Minors

Quote of the Day

"Most folks are about as happy as they make up their minds to be." - Abraham Lincoln

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  • triple

    Now that Kevin Gregg has sat around and only seen action in one game over the last week, I’m sure he’ll be the next to fall apart when the Cubs are just outs away from winning a game.

    • GaryLeeT

      On Tuesday, when the bases were loaded, and the game was on the line, the situation called for a right handed pitcher that could KO somebody with a fork ball. Instead of Camp, I would have brought in Gregg, and had Fujikawa close.

      • Shawon O’Meter

        I think that would’ve been very smart. I hadn’t thought of it but it makes a lot of sense. I think unless you have an absolutely dominant closer most managers get far too wed to closers having to pitch the ninth.

  • GaryLeeT

    Still not convinced we’ll ever see a productive hot streak from Soriano.

    • Ripsnorter1

      Patience, Gary. Patience.

      You have 1.75 years for him to generate a hot streak, since he is virtually untradeable.

      Have you seen his defensive play this year?

      4 errors already. On a pace for 16…..
      And if that scares you, just think how 29 other GMs feel about it.

    • 07GreyDigger

      We will. It’s not even June. Soriano is like the weather here, he doesn’t warm up until mid-june.

      • GaryLeeT

        That’s too long to wait. Who ever heard of letting a hitter bat cleanup for the first 1/3 of the season while he waits to get hot?

        • Tony_Hall

          Not a lot of good choices to bat 4th, but Soriano should move down to 5th or 6th where he is more suited to bat. Just wish it was because a real #4 hitter was making him move down.

          • Ray Ray

            And Rizzo should bat 5th or 6th and Castro should bat 6th and Castillo should bat 7th or 8th and Schierholz should bat 7th or 8th. That is what this team is.

          • Tony_Hall

            I believe that is what I said by not a lot of good choices to bat 4th.

            This lineup will look better once we have a 2B who can bat 2nd and move Castro to 5th and a 3B/RF who can bat 4th, moving Soriano to 6th.

          • 07GreyDigger

            Or if they just get rid of Soriano period.

  • Ripsnorter1

    DeJesus is a platoon player. He hit .149 vs LHP–with .149 slugging!–in 115 PA last year, and is not even playing vs. LHP this year.

    Do I feel bad about that? Yup

    Do I feel bad about saying he was a bad sign? Nope.

    • Tony_Hall

      You don’t have to feel bad, just should admit you were wrong.

    • Shawon O’Meter

      Rip that is obviously your prerogative but I know every objective sabermetric analysis is going to actually say it was a VERY good sign and I think come the trade deadlines you’ll see the majority of GMs think it was too.

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

        Rip I respect your knowledge of the game but you seriously undermine yourself by continuing to act like this wasn’t a good signing. He bats right-handed, which means he plays 80% of time. I’ve never understood why we call a right handed hitter a platoon player. Lefties are platoon-players, righties are on the field. This signing was an absolute home-run. This shows how biased you are against anything Theo does.

        • 07GreyDigger

          If Ryno got the gig and performed similarly to Sveum, would we all be bitching like this about his managerial moves? I hope so. It’s only fair.

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

            The naysayers would have Theo’s back I can tell you that much. As soon as he made that move many fans turned against him. When we win a world series that may change but maybe not.

          • Ripsnorter1

            I believe in fairness.

          • Brp921

            So do I. But then I was angry when Sandberg wasn’t hired so I’m just a negative Theo hating stereotype.

        • Tony_Hall

          I think you mixed up and meant to say faces RH, not bats RH.

          But your point is completely correct.

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

            You are right, thanks Tony.

        • Ripsnorter1

          Mr. Boardrider,

          You are a loyal fan, and a good fellow, and I love having you on the CCO. So this post isn’t any attempt to bash you.

          I am not kicking that Ryne Sandberg did not get hired as manager. At the time, the information I had was that he wasn’t ready. So any criticism of Theo, Jed, Team Theo, et al, has nothing to do with Ryne Sandberg.

          If DeJesus could play the way he is currently playing all year, against both LHP and RHP, then it would have been a good sign. He’s currently having a good year as a one way player. I do not believe he’ll continue to slug .500, as he has never, ever done it in his life. He’s a career .421 slugger, ie, something you’d expect from a decent Shortstop.

          As it is, he’s a one way player with a middling BA and almost no power and no speed.

          If you want to pay $5 million for a part time player with sub-standard power and no speed, that is fine by me. However, I do not think such signings will lead the Cubs to glory.

          And as proof, let me submit to you our record for the past two years as evidence.

          • Ray Ray

            How would Michael Bourn look in CF and batting leadoff?

          • Ripsnorter1

            This year: very nice.
            But the next three years on a 4 yr contract…..doubtful.

          • Ray Ray

            I don’t agree. He is only 30. He keeps himself in good shape. He will be fine till late 30’s just like Kenny Lofton and others.

          • Ripsnorter1

            I loved Lofton. Man alive, I hated it when the Cubs threw him away! DUMB MOVE! POOR ROSTER MANAGEMENT!

          • Ray Ray

            but my point was that Lofton relied on his legs and look how long he lasted. Bourn will be very effective throughout the length of this contract imo

          • Tony_Hall

            Different era and different drugs and pills allowed.

          • Ray RAy

            So a guy who is 34 will not be able to run like he did at 30 if he is not allowed pills or drugs?

          • Tony_Hall

            It is a downhill slide after 27, 28 which are the peak of a players physical condition.

            When you are talking about the best of the best and if you lose even just a little it can change a players game. But the biggest fear is injury. It only takes once and your legs are never back to that full peak speed you use to have.

            But yes the drugs of the 60’s, 70’s and 80’s helped those players keep going and steriods and other peds kept the players of the 90’s and 00’s going far into their late 30’s and early 40’s that made so many people think that was going to continue.

          • Ray Ray

            conditioning and technology in that area is far far superior. I wish they had some of that when I was a kid. I work out with guys that run track in age specific track meets around the country. One of my good friends runs the 400 M at age 43 at the same speed he did at 25. There are different ways to train to maintain speed well into your 30’s. This blanket statement that you will lose your legs at such a young age as 34 is simply not true.

          • Tony_Hall

            Agreed, but there is a difference between running a 400M and playing 162 games a year of baseball that grinds on your body year after year.

          • Tony_Hall

            Bourne is no Kenny Lofton.

            Lofton was a ballplayer!

          • Tony_Hall

            OLD and expensive with that 4 year contract….sorry could pass it up.

            This year, very good, but not for 4 years has been my point all along.

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

            I appreciate your reply Rip. And I understand your view. But I do think it was a good signing for the price and for what we will probably get for him at the deadline if he keeps a portion of this up.

          • Ripsnorter1

            We shall see what he brings…if anything…at the deadline.

            What did we get for Dempster?

            So far…..just a minor league player who is hitting .258 at AA Tennessee.

            Maholm? Only an injured pitcher who could bring it before the injury, but now…????

            We shall see.

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

            And Vizcaino. Who when healthy is a front of the line starter or an ace closer. He’s recovering from an injury that is no big deal today. There’s no reason to assume he won’t be as good or better than he was before.

          • Ray Ray

            So how many games did Vizcaino win as a front line starter in the majors before his injury? How many mlb saves does he have? He is a prospect

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

            True, but he’s a top prospect. When healthy he’s one of the top 10 in the game. You have to have prospects, some will work and some won’t. Can we not discuss a prospect until he gets to the bigs? I don’t understand where you are coming from.

            What’s with you today Ray? You seem to be disagreeing for the sake of disagreeing? We don’t always see eye to eye but I always respect your opinion.

          • Ray Ray

            No. I am just trying to figure out where you are coming from. No disrespect. We both want the same goal. I just am not as patient as you. I am just saying you cannot pencil in players based on what they have done in the minors or a few scouting reports. Vizcaino might make it but he might not. There is no guarantee that he will be a top of the rotation starter or closer…even if he never got hurt. I am disagreeing with the thinking that you and Tony saying that you cannot try to win and rebuild. I hope I didn’t offend you today. I am just trying to understand where you are coming from

          • 07GreyDigger

            Don’t forget Dempster had a no trade clause and held everything up. We could have had Randall Delgado instead. That would have been way better.

          • Tony_Hall

            I’ll take Vizcaino from the Braves for Maholm over Delgado for Demptser.

            Delgado 7.43 ERA 1.739 WHIP this year.

            Hendricks 2.44 ERA 1.065 WHIP and starting to become someone to watch at AA

            Villanueva 258/322/406 also at AA and is who I believe they think will be our 3B of the future.

  • Ripsnorter1

    I would put Castro in the #1 hole, and move…ahem…DeJesus vs. RHP to the #2 hole. Let Castro rake vs the fastball. DeJesus can take a pitch.
    And let McKay teach Castro to run. Then Soriano wouldn’t lead the Cubs with 5 steals of 3B.

    • Tony_Hall

      The 2 hole will get more fastballs than the leadoff or 5/6 spots with the 3 hole hitter behind him.

      Castro is a 6 hole hitter right now, that might develop into a 5 hole hitter, just not in this lineup.

      • coachdon

        The 2 hole gets more fastballs only if the leadoff man/baserunner is a threat to steal and DeJesus isn’t.

        • Ripsnorter1

          Coach,
          You know what you’re talking about!

        • Tony_Hall

          Yes that is another reason.

          But also they do when they pitcher doesn’t want to walk the 2 hole hitter to get to the 3 hole hitter with a man (men) on base.

        • Tony_Hall

          So with the Rizzo on deck and Castro batting with DeJesus on deck and a 3-1 count, you think the pitcher won’t throw a fastball because DeJesus isn’t a threat to steal, versus not wanting to face Rizzo with 2 men on base?

          Base stealing is just not that big a part of today’s game. Pitchers have better pick-off moves, catchers have cannons for arms and stats have shown that it isn’t worth it unless you can steal a very high percentage. The main reason the 2 hole hitter gets more fastballs is who bats behind him, not who is on base in front of him, as the 3 hole hitter always bats after the 2 hole, but the lead-off guy is on base around 40% of the time.

          • Ray Ray

            Tony, a threat to steal is huge! Middle infielders might cheat that extra step closer to the bag. The Cubs could have pulled out last nights game because of a stolen base by Borbon. You will never convince me that speed is not an asset. It is a huge weapon is utilized correctly.

          • Tony_Hall

            I didn’t say it wasn’t a huge threat, just that is not as big a part of the game. It is a lost art due to pitchers paying a lot more attention to it, slide steps, and catchers with better footwork and cannon for arms. It is not because players aren’t as fast, but it is just much harder to steal bases now. Unless you can be successful at least 75% of the time and actually more like 80% of the time, it is just not worth the risk.

          • Ray Ray

            Wait till the Reds call up Billy Hamilton.

          • Tony_Hall

            Now there is a difference maker who will exceed 80% and be fun to watch….too bad he plays for the Reds.

            He could bring back memories of Rickey Henderson and Tim Raines….now those were the days of base stealing.

  • Tony_Hall

    Great Rambling today Brian….one World Series or two…great line.

  • raymondrobertkoenig

    Castro has been a “pro” for more than 3 years.

    • Tony_Hall

      Debut May 7th, 2010…he said 3 full years, maybe he should have said 3 years and 17 days….

      • raymondrobertkoenig

        Castro has been getting paid to play (a “pro”) since 2007.

        • Tony_Hall

          Not the same thing…do you count 16 year old playing in the Dominican as pros? Sveum was talking pro as in majors.

          • raymondrobertkoenig

            If a person is getting paid to do what they’re doing, they’re a professional. There’s really no reason Castro should be making the same mistakes over and over, unless of course he’s reached his “ceiling”. Some comps I’ve seen see him having a career similar to Edgar Renteria. Time will tell.

          • Tony_Hall

            I have been paid to ump a 10 year old baseball game….I think I will add professional umpire to my resume……

          • raymondrobertkoenig

            You win. Keep on trollin’!

          • Tony_Hall

            Trollin – “Someone that makes you mad over the internet”

            Nothing to win, and not sure why I would make you mad over this, but big difference between minors and majors especially when talking about a 23 year old kid with 3 years and 17 days of experience….I almost said 3 years, but didn’t want to short change and make him seem less experienced that he is to date.

          • raymondrobertkoenig

            My definition of trolling is different, and unimportant. You certainly didn’t make me mad. In any case, Castro has been in professional baseball since 2007 and has been playing much longer. Even Sveum says inexperience is no excuse.

  • scooby

    I was thinking on your Brett Jackson comment that you wrote that accurately and that held with your theme. However, after the shoulder and foot injury he came off the DL in early May. May stats : 300/364 55PA 11 k’s
    19% K rate on those numbers and I do excited.

    • scooby

      btw- He started in CF the last two days as well!

  • Ray Ray

    Seeing what Cleveland is doing this year is more proof that you can go from bad to good in a short time. This is what I and many have been saying about the Cubs. Compete and Re-build. I am not crazy about Nick Swisher but the other moves are not putting handcuffs on this team moving forward. Let’s look at their record last year and some of their key moves.

    Indians 2012 68-94 Record Cubs 2012 61-101

    2013 27-19 1st place 2013 18-26

    Aquired

    Nick Swisher .274 Avg .384 OBP with 23 BB’s
    Michael Bourn .320 Avg .365 OBP with 7 SB

    Mark Reynolds .261 Avg 12 HR with 40 RBI
    Drew Stubbs .255 Avg 11 2B with 5 SB

    Terry Francona- New manager that changed the culture.

    They also aquired a former top pick in Trevor Bauer and took a chance on Scott Kazmir.

    • Tony_Hall

      Let’s see where they are in September.

      Do a look at Toronto, Angels, Dodgers and see how their right way of bringing in talent is doing?

      • Ray Ray

        I am not talking about signing the Josh Hamiltons etc. Take a look at the Red Sox this year too. And by the way….look at the Royals to see that you cannot build strictly by the draft. This is where the Royals drafted for 4 straight years. 2005 2nd Alex Gordon 2006 1st Luke Hochever 2007 Moustakis 2008 Hosmer. Hosmer, Moustakis have not been the players they thought they would become yet. Hochever was a bust and Alex Gordon has been great. The Cubs need to add players via free agency and trade this offseason.

        • Tony_Hall

          They have added players every off-season, this coming one will be no different. But I still wouldn’t want most of the FA’s available that require multi-year commitments as they will look bad before they are half way through, like most FA signings end up looking.

          To me FA is where you pick up true difference makers at extremely ridiculous prices, but that is the price for difference makers. You also pick up pieces and role players that you can do on 1,2 or max 3 year contracts. Any contract in the 3+ range on the FA market that is not for a difference maker usually doesn’t work out that well.

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

          The difference is we have money and the Royals don’t. We can eventually use prospects to trade for guys to supplement the big league roster, and still have young studs to step in the future.

          • Ray Ray

            The point is that not all these 1st 2nd 3rd picks in the draft will be Strassburg and Harper. The Nats were extremely lucky to have those 2 players at the time they were terrible. There are more Luke Hochevers,Tim Beckham types than Bryce Harper.

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

            Right, but if you don’t have the pick you don’t get the chance.

          • Ray Ray

            Look at where the Cards have drafted. It is about scouting and drafting the “right” players. Did they tank a season or 2 or 3 to draft lower. They drafted Michael Wacha from Texas A&M last season at 19 and he is on the fast track to join the starting rotation for them. Kolten Wong will be their starting 2nd baseman in all likelihood next season and he was drafted middle to end of 1st round.

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

            Sure, but you increase your odds with a higher draft choice. Why not stack the deck in your favor?

          • Ray Ray

            so again. you want them to lose and not even try to win right now.

          • Tony_Hall

            Of course you want to win, but when the time is right you have to make realistic decisions on the chances of winning each year, and if that chance is too small (it sure is right now) then the FO needs to make the best decisions and moves for the long term. I believe this team will go from bad to good in one season and I believe it will be in less than 3 years.

          • Ray Ray

            You have to give the team a chance to win in the offseason. This FO hasn’t done that for 2 straight years. And again to make myself clear….I am not saying Josh Hamilton. I put Cleveland up there as an example on how you can turn it around without breaking the bank.

          • Tony_Hall

            Like you said it is easy to go from bad to good (mediocre), but you can’t make a team great doing it like Cleveland did.

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

            Cleveland will not be in the postseason. We have different goals. They want to be over .500, we want to win a World Series.

          • Ray Ray

            Where did you see their goal is to be .500. There are 2 wild card teams. As I keep saying with your answers….you do not believe a team can win and rebuild. It is obvious that you think the Cubs need to lose to get to their goal and I do not believe you have to.

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

            Definitely want them to win. Just able to tolerate the losing with an eye on the big picture. I can’t root against the Cubs, I’m not capable of it. But I don’t want more being average, or postseason losses. It’s world series or bust for me. And sustained world series appearances.

          • Tony_Hall

            Do you actually think if the Cubs had gone out the last 2 off-season and signed/traded for players like the Angels, Dodgers and Blue Jays, they would be closer to winning a World Series? Because those 3 teams have done what I believe you would like to see and the results have not been good in the early years, just wait until those contracts look really bad.

          • Ray Ray

            Have I been a proponent of signing Josh Hamilton,Prince Fielder etc? You keep bringing up the Angels,Dodgers and Blue Jays.

          • Tony_Hall

            Can’t say I remember for sure if you were for going after those specific guys or not, but you did seem to want them to be buyers in FA, which is what those teams did and are failing miserably so far doing so.

    • GaryLeeT

      I lobbied hard for the Cubs to sign Bourn, and I think Reynolds was so unwanted he had to pay the Indians to play this year. That would have filled 2 spots of great need for the Cubs. Of course, I lobbied hard for the Jackson signing too.

      • Ray Ray

        I thought I was the only one who was lobbying for Bourn :) He would have given the Cubs a true leadoff hitter and great glove and his contract is very reasonable.I hope Theo doesn’t go out and sign Ellsbury now this offseason. His skills are diminishing and he doesn’t have a good OBP. Choo is the one outfielder who will be in high demand but he will get big bucks.

        • 07GreyDigger

          I hope they don’t sign Ellsbury. I really think that big year of his was a fluke and he’s been pretty bad so far this year. Not to mention, if you touch him he shatters to pieces.

          • Ray Ray

            agreed 100%. Did you hear the Red Sox will not even talk to him about a contract till after the season. They see this too.

          • Tony_Hall

            No thanks on Ellsbury, unless it is for very little money, even then I’m just not sure you want a guy who is showing to be this injury prone.

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

            Yep, no to Ellsbury. He may have another good year or two but he’s older than a guy I want in the plans. We need players in their mid-20’s.

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

      They’re not building for the long-haul. They’ll have a good (not postseason) year followed by a season in the cellar, then maybe be decent again the next year. The Cubs are building in the mode of the Braves, Cardinals, A’s and Rays. A team that is in the postseason hunt year in and year out and more often then not makes it. Cleveland won’t make the postseason, so who cares how many games they may win?

      • Ray Ray

        How are any of those contract not building for the long haul Boardrider? Who’s to say they won’t make the postseason? They are exciting and are currently in 1st place. There are 2 wildcards and we all know that never has a wild card won the world series.

        • Tony_Hall

          Enjoy their games, that is the fun part about baseball, but let’s see where they are in September before congratulating them on their off-season moves and how they built for the long haul, as if they are banking on those 4 to be their future, it won’t look pretty.

          • Ray Ray

            You can agree that Mark Reynolds in not in their long term plans. Is Michael Bourn an overpay? Nick Swisher is a local kid and is a decent player who again won’t handcuff them and Drew Stubbs was aquired via trade and isn’t expensive. Give credit for a team trying to win. They are a small market but they didn’t decide to tank this season after coming off 94 losses.

          • Tony_Hall

            They have a very nice first 2 months. Bourn is an overpay and we have already beat that horse too many times. It is not this season I was worried about with him. Swisher, Stubbs, and Reynolds I am just not impressed with any of them and am glad they are in Cleveland.

            Winning 84 or 81 games and missing the playoffs does no good for any team. Once again, we have beaten this one too many times already, but being an 80 range win team is something this FO has no intention of trying to do, hoping to win a few extra games every once in awhile.

          • Ray Ray

            4 years at 48 mil is an overpay? OK, I will use that as a comparison to see who Theo signs this offseason. What are we paying EJAX again? 4 years at ?

          • Tony_Hall

            EJAX was an overpay, I have said that since the beginning.

            Almost all true FA signings will be overpays. It is just not the best use of a teams assets to go to FA to stock their team. To supplement and/or get difference makers yes, but not to get your team. And most difference makers never see FA anymore.

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

            Agreed…obviously I would ;)

      • Ray Ray

        So let me ask you this. “IF” the Cubs signed Bourn,Mark Reynoldson a 1 year deal to play 3rd. Jason Grilli signed to close and was as effective as he has been in Pittsburgh and the Cubs were 27-19 in 1st place…..would they not be building for the long haul???? I am curious to hear your answer.

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

          Why sign them for one year unless we would flip them at the deadline? And anything longer than 1 year contracts may have caused problems and made them difficult to deal. Those guys wouldn’t have gotten us to the postseason. I don’t pine for mediocre, I want to win a world series. Any move not made toward that goal I don’t lose any sleep over. So no, I think those moves would have been to appease the fan base and not been toward building sustained success. We need to build the system and that means draft choices and flipping players for prospects.

          • Ray Ray

            So you want the Cubs to lose. Correct? You should cheer for them to lose every game…….until all the prospects are ready. 3 more years of losing and getting a top 5 pick. That is what you are saying correct? You do not believe they can compete and rebuild at the same time.

          • Tony_Hall

            They are competing now. They have been in most games, and series. It will not be 3 more years of losing.

          • Tony_Hall

            During games, no one that is a Cubs fan wants to see them lose.

          • Ray Ray

            This is where I am confused. You and Boardrider say you do not want to give a false sense of hope to possibly finish in the middle of the pack. In order to try and win you need to add better players. So if they added a Bourn,Grilli,Mark Reynolds…they could have a chance with the way the starting pitching has been. So you and Boardrider are sayinng that isn’t the goal. You don’t want to try and win until you can win for several several seasons in a row. In other words…..you want them to lose. You should cheer for them to get the 1st pick. This is what is crazy to me. There are 2 wild card spots for the playoffs. Anything can happen in the playoffs. You should try and win every year and if the team is out of it by the deadline….then you can be sellers.

          • Tony_Hall

            It has been obvious you don’t get and don’t buy into what is going on. But what I don’t get is you think the difference between this team being a World Series contender and where it is at is Bourne, Swisher, Grilli, and Reynolds…..sorry I just don’t think so.

          • Ray Ray

            There are surprises every year. Did SF fans thin the Giants were a WS winning team a couple of years ago? How about the Cards when they barely snuck in the playoffs? How about the O’s last year. They very easily could have gotten into the WS if a couple of balls bounced their way. So this year the Yanks and Red Sox are surprising teams. The Blue Jays were the “sexy” pick but not always does the best team on paper win.

          • Tony_Hall

            The Giants had elite pitching.

            The Cardinals are the model we are trying to duplicate.

            The Orioles played way above their heads (got lucky).

            The Yankees and Red Sox are never truly surprising teams, the Indians are a better example of a beginning of the season surprise.

          • Ray Ray

            The Giants won the 1st WS with Aubrey Huff,Edgar Renteria,Juan Uribe,Aaron Rowand and Pat Burrell. I don’t care how elite the pitching was…..that does not look like a WS winning team and it was a surprise.

          • Tony_Hall

            One guy named Buster Posey came up and carried that offense. Huff had a career year, Sanchez was at 2B 292/343 Uribe was the SS and added 24 HR’s Sandoval had a decent year and Andres Torres had a career year.

            But that rotation
            Cain 3.14 – 13-11
            Lincecum 3.43 – 16-10
            Bumgarner 3.00 – 7-6
            J Sanchez 3.07 – 13-9
            Zito 4.15 – 9-14

            And a good bullpen
            Closer Brian Wilson
            48 Saves
            Romo 2.18
            Casilla 1.95

            So, great pitching staff, a couple career years, and a MVP player added early in the year. Yes they surprised, but young players will do that to the masses.

          • Ray Ray

            You are stating my case. You need surprises and career years. Jonathan Sanchez had a career year. Huff,Uribe,etc. That is what it takes. It was surprise.

          • Tony_Hall

            If you go for it every year with that hope, you will end up like the Cubs did at the end of JH’s era. Ringless, jobless, empty farm system and an old overpaid roster.

            The Giants won 2 World Series because of YOUNG guys. This is a game that is more and more dominated by guys under 30 (and I am not saying you can’t give me examples of guys in their 30’s playing well).

          • Ray Ray

            I still haven’t gotten an answer to the question I keep asking you and Boardrider. Do you not think it is possible to compete and rebuild?

          • Tony_Hall

            It depends on the situation. No 2 situations are the same. In the Cubs case, I feel what they are doing is the best way to rebuild this team. Aaron and many others on here during the end of the JH era were calling for this style of rebuild as the minors were bare of talent. To make the major league team competitive for a World Series these last 2 years would have required some big signings that would not have been in the best interest of this franchise in the long term and would have kept them in a all in attitude each year, further depleting the system of ever being able to produce talent or to be able to pick up talent like they have.

            Sorry, it is just not a yes or no answer. If the minors were stacked and ready to bring up players every year for the pitching staff and the offense, then I would have been for going for it every year, but that is and was not the case when Theo took over.

          • 07GreyDigger

            I think what Tony is trying to get across to everyone is we want the Cubs to be consistent performers, sort like they were in 2008 and 2009, but others want seem to want the sexy names in hopes of competing.

            I want both, but I don’t think you get both without that strong foundation. I think with extensions being the way they are and killing the free agent market and big trades being more prevalent, having a good minor league system to build from and trade from is how this team is going to compete going forward.

            I don’t think that Theo and Co are banking on riding Soler and Baez to a world series, I think a lot of the minor league guys we discuss, we’ll play for other teams and the FO will hope to poach other team’s gems to improve our futures.

          • triple

            Those Giants hitters actually batted above .150 with RISP… they were very good for timely hitting, unlike this team.

    • 07GreyDigger

      I think the Cleveland route is where the Cubs will end up Ray. I don’t think they’re attempting a full tear down rebuild like the Royals, Pirates or Rays, but somewhere in the middle. However, we aren’t where they are and this was not something we could do this offseason.

      Cleveland had a lot more core pieces going into this season. Guys like Santana, Cabrera, Chisenhall, Kipnis, Masterson, Jimenez and Perez made them able to add Swisher and Bourn.

      Cubs just have Rizzo, Samardzija and Castro. They need a lot more than that before they can sign some guys and be competitive.

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

        Agreed

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

    I love the ramblings because it always sparks the best and most passionate discussions…

    • Tony_Hall

      I agree and it has been great discussion this morning and staying on topic of talking baseball.

      Even though there are 2 main thoughts on how to get the Cubs to be a great organization and to ultimately win a World Series, we are all Cub fans and want to see this team win. I have never watched a game and rooted for them to lose even when in the big picture it could help (like the end of last year).

    • Ray Ray

      Unfortunately I haven’t been able to get much work done today but I have enjoyed it.

  • John_CC

    Posted this link yesterday but I think it is pertinent to the comments today.

    “Are we expecting too much from Castro?”

    http://www.chicagonow.com/cubs-den/2013/05/starlin-castro-are-we-expecting-too-much/

  • paulcatanese

    After reading all the posts regarding how the Cubs should or should not do to build a winner, I have come to this conclusion.

    Any free agents they bring in should be young, very young.

    Think about a Fielder, Pujols or anyone in that age bracket.

    With the facilities at the ballpark, they have to wait in line to go to

    the bathroom, hike 1/2 mile to the field, bring their own

    weights, and watch one tv in the clubhouse and try to play a ballgame on top of that. The foodbar contains
    hamburgers with or without cheese.
    One cannot expect these guys to perform, they are overweight, tired from the trek from the clubhouse to the field, and just fall apart.
    And that’s why its hard for the Cubs to compete, too old.

    • Tony_Hall

      That is why they need to start the renovation project and the clubhouse and player amenities is the first on the list.

      • paulcatanese

        Absolutely!!!

        • 07GreyDigger

          I know you were being funny in this post, but all of these aspects affect them and add tons of day games in the intense heat in the summer has got to hurt more than it helps. Kudos to Ricketts to finally updating our lovable dump called Wrigley.

          • paulcatanese

            Yeah, funny to a degree, have always felt those improvements
            or lack of were some of the reasons some players did not want to come over to play. They need to be done.

  • Brp921

    Does anyone else have a problem with the right side of the comments being cut off or comments being blurry when using their phone ?

    • Ray Ray

      yes

    • Tony_Hall

      yes

    • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

      Disqus is having a rough week. Sorry. Their issues run downhill. It has been quite the challenge. They are expecting to be back to normal soon.

      • Brp921

        Thanks guys, for the last few days I’ve thought my phone was going haywire. I’ve been having CCO withdrawal lol.

        • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

          Sorry man.

      • Tony_Hall

        I have had this issue on my phone for awhile. I use a Nexus 7″ pad if I am not on my laptop and have no issues.

        • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

          They are working on a lot of changes and corrections. I am hoping the problems are corrected soon. I’m still trying to figure out why there is not a comment section on yesterday’s recap. I thought I did something at first but I cannot find any errors on my end. Sorry to ramble, it can get frustrating.

          • Tony_Hall

            No worries, you do a great job and I am sure we can only imagine what you go through to give us all this info and a forum to talk Cubs baseball everyday.

          • Brp921

            Ditto Neil, thanks for your dedication and hard work the CCO is the best forum there is for Cubfans.

          • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

            Thanks man

          • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

            Thanks Tony

          • 07GreyDigger

            No worries. I second the motion that this is the best forum for Cub fans on the internet. Way better than Bleed Cubbie Blue.

          • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

            Thank you very much