Resetting the Cubs Off-Season in the New Year

While Jeff Samardzija and Masahiro Tanaka garnered most of the attention throughout the holidays, the Cubs have a lot of work to do in the coming weeks leading up to pitchers and catchers reporting on Feb. 13.

The team has eight arbitration eligible players without a contract for next season.  Teams were showing interest in trading for Darwin Barney and Nate Schierholtz last month, are the Cubs still listening to offers for those two players? Could the Cubs still bring in a starter or two to add to their rotation? Plus, the television and radio contracts must still be hammered out, along with an agreement with the rooftop club owners so the team can finally begin restoring Wrigley Field.

During an interview prior to the holidays, Jed Hoyer indicated the front office was working on ways to improve the big league roster. While he did not mention any specific deals, Hoyer did say it could be an active January for the Chicago Cubs. And the way things are shaping up, it could indeed be a busy month for the Cubs.

Masahiro Tanaka

The Tanaka Sweepstakes figures to heat up next week when Masahiro Tanaka’s agent, Casey Close, returns from vacation. Teams that have committed to the $20 million release fee will begin negotiating with MasahiroTanaka and his agent. The Yankees, and several other teams, reportedly contacted Close about his client after Rakuten finally posted Tanaka.

The Cubs are expected to be in the middle of the process. Reports have suggested the Cubs will not be outbid for Tanaka and many think the Cubs and Yankees will be the most aggressive in the pursuit of Tanaka.

The Mariners, Blue Jays, Diamondbacks and Angels are expected to go all out for Masahiro Tanaka while the Dodgers and Rangers, early frontrunners for Tanaka, are believed to have cooled on Tanaka in recent weeks. The Red Sox figure to have their hands in the bidding before he signs a contract with a MLB team. Other teams thought to be interested include the Giants, Twins and Astros.

For those hoping for a quick resolution, that is simply not going to happen. Casey Close has until Jan. 24 at 4:00pm CST to find the best fit, and contract, for Masahiro Tanaka. And Tanaka acknowledged as much to the Japanese media on New Year’s Eve. Tanaka said where he will be pitching next season will probably take a while and not “determined so quickly.”

Salary Arbitration

The deadline for players to file for salary arbitration is Jan. 14 and salary arbitration figures must be exchanged by Jan. 17, the first day of the Cubs Convention. The Cubs had ten players that were arbitration eligible for the 2014 season before Donnie Murphy (one-year, $825,000 plus incentives) and George Kottaras (one-year, $1.075 million plus incentives) agreed to terms on one-year deals in December and avoided arbitration.

Of the remaining eight players, each figures to receive a nice bump in pay from what they made during the 2013 season.

If the Cubs are unable to sign Jeff Samardzija to an extension, Samardzija is in line for a $5-6 million salary for 2014 after being paid $2.64 million, plus the $125,000 he earned for pitching over 200 innings last year.

There were reports early in the off-season the Cubs could approach Travis Wood about a long term contract extension. Those rumors and rumblings went away as the team appeared to focus on Samardzija and Tanaka. The possibility of signing Wood long term remains. Wood is arbitration eligible for the first time and will receive a significant pay increase from the $527,000 he more than earned last year to somewhere in the $3.2-4 million range for 2014.

Darwin Barney should more than triple his 2013 salary of $562,000 in his first year of salary arbitration to between $1.8 and $2.2 million in 2014. Luis Valbuena ($930,000 in 2013 to $1.4-1.6 million in 2014), James Russell ($1.075 million in 2013 to $1.6-1.95 million in 2014), Justin Ruggiano ($494,500 in 2013, first year arbitration eligible in 2014 to $825,000-$950,000) and Pedro Strop ($503,000 in 2013 to $1-1.2 million in 2014) are all inline for salary increases. Nate Schierholtz is arbitration eligible for the last time. The Cubs paid Schierholtz $2.75 million ($2.25 million base, $500,000 bonus) last year and he is looking at just under a $5 million salary for 2014.

The Cubs are not expected to go to arbitration with any of the eight remaining players, but if they cannot avoid the process, the hearings take place between Feb. 1 and Feb. 21 this year.

Darwin Barney

The last rumor that surfaced concerning Darwin Barney was on Dec. 14 when Bruce Levine reported the Yankees were interested in acquiring Barney as a late inning defensive replacement. The Cubs and Yankees could revisit those discussions, but it is unclear at this point if the Cubs value what Barney brings to the table more than they could receive for him in a trade.

Nate Schierholtz

The Cubs were thought to be listening to offers for Nate Schierholtz during the Winter Meetings. Those rumors quieted after the meetings but a team like the Diamondbacks could still have interest in trading for Schierholtz.

Nate Schierholtz is coming off a career year and if he is not moved this winter, he will certainly be traded before the deadline in July. Schierholtz does not figure to be in the Cubs’ long term plans and the front office will look to turn a short-term asset into long-term assets.

Pitching, Pitching, More Pitching and Jesse Crain

The Cubs are exploring ways to add pitching to the organization outside of Masahiro Tanaka. Theo Epstein and Jed Hoyer are on record stating they would like to add at least one more starter to the mix before Spring Training begins.

Scott Baker remains a possibility for the Cubs and so does free agent Jason Hammel. The Cubs have scouted RHP Joel Pineiro and are reportedly interested in LHP Clayton Richard as a reliever.

The Cubs showed interest in RHP Jesse Crain and were reportedly checking his medicals. Crain is no longer available. The Astros announced on Tuesday they signed Crain to a one-year contract. When he is able to pitch, Crain is expected to help Houston close out games in 2014.

Wrigley Field

Tom Ricketts received the green light from the City to proceed with the project to Restore Wrigley Field. The City Council approved the changes to the Wrigley plan on Dec. 11 as expected. Mayor Rahm Emanuel and Ald. Tom Tunney demanded nearly three weeks ago the Cubs begin the project.

Ricketts has not received the assurances he needs from the Wrigleyville Rooftop Association they will not pursue legal action to protect their views. Mayor Emanuel has reportedly put pressure on the rooftop club owners to settle their dispute with the Cubs so the project can begin.

The team will announce plans for the season-long celebration of Wrigley Field turning 100 years old during the Cubs Convention. Will the Cubs be able to announce they have come to an agreement with the rooftops at the same time?

The Cubs have already lost one off-season and have pushed back the Wrigley renovation plans for another winter. The restoration needs to begin so the business side can start providing baseball operations with the payroll flexibility it needs to improve the product on Wrigley’s field.

TV and Radio Contracts

The Cubs’ television and radio contracts beyond the 2014 season are up in the air right now. The team exercised an option in their contract with WGN TV on Nov. 6. If the Cubs did not exercise the option when they did nearly two months ago, the team would have been locked into their contract with WGN TV through the 2022 season. The Cubs’ contract with Comcast SportsNet expires after the 2019 season and the thought at the time was that the team would work out a contract with WGN TV so both contracts would have the same expiration date.

When news surfaced the Cubs exercised the option, WGN TV had 30 days to agree to a new contract with the team or the Cubs would be able to negotiate with other outlets. Nearly two months has passed and a new deal with WGN TV has yet to be announced.

As for the team’s contract with 720 WGN, the radio station exercised an option to re-open their contract with the team on Oct. 17. 720 WGN pointed to lost revenue (bad ratings) due to the poor product as the reason for exercising the option. The status of the talks with 720 WGN has not been leaked or made public to this point. The team and their long-time broadcast partner did agree to who would replace Keith Moreland in the booth alongside Pat Hughes with the hiring of Ron Coomer last month.

The new television and radio contracts will be a huge source of income for the Chicago Cubs. How the team maximizes those revenue streams, along with the Restoration of Wrigley Field, will have a big impact on the organization moving forward.

And while the broadcast rights (television and radio) and the Restoration of Wrigley Field may be viewed as side stories as the 2014 season approaches, those deals are just as important to the future of the Cubs as any player they could sign, or trade for, right now.

News, Notes and Rumors

A report out of Baltimore last week indicated the Orioles were still interested in acquiring Jeff Samardzija, but the question at the time was could Dan Duquette offer the Cubs enough young pitching in return for Samardzija. A report from the Baltimore Sun on Dec. 30 indicated the Orioles might not be willing to trade any of their pitching prospects unless they “are overwhelmed by a deal.” Any trade involving Jeff Samardzija would have to include at least two top pitching prospects, and if the Orioles are not willing to part with those pitchers then a conversation with Theo Epstein and Jed Hoyer over Samardzija probably ended before it really got started.

Greg Maddux could be the first player ever unanimously elected to the Hall of Fame. Maddux has been on 100 percent of the ballots so far and if the voting holds up Tom Glavine, Frank Thomas and Craig Biggio will join Bobby Cox, Tony LaRussa and Joe Torre at Cooperstown in late July. The 2014 Hall of Fame Class will be announced on Jan. 8.

Buster Olney reported on the top 10 storylines to watch in 2014.

And for those wondering about the cost of pitching, according to a report from the Cleveland Plain Dealer, Ubaldo Jimenez was asking for a four-year contract worth $17-20 million per season … at least the last time Paul Hoynes heard what Jimenez was looking to sign for this winter.

Follow ChicagoCubsOnline on Twitter: @TheCCO and @TheCCO_Minors

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  • Tony_Hall

    Ubaldo Jimenez 4 years $68-$80M….that makes Tanaka look pretty good.

    • GaryLeeT

      and if that’s not the Indians paying it, add a 1st or 2nd round draft pick to the price tag. Yeeouch.

      • Tony_Hall

        It gives you all the reasons why Samardzija is willing to play out the next 2 seasons. Huge payday, especially if he can stay healthy.

        • J Daniel

          Also, everyone forgets that team Theo made him take a pay cut their first year … I am sure he still remembers that.

          • Tony_Hall

            He has no reason to give a discount, but the main reason for doing what they did was to eliminate his NTC.

          • J Daniel

            Good point, didn’t think about that. He is in for a monster windfall so no need to sign now. Don’t blame the guy.

          • Darrell Birkey

            He had made millions for years as a minor leaguer so He already had more than he earned.

          • J Daniel

            That is besides the point … it would be like if you had a new boss came in and he cut your pay. Not cool, you wouldn’t be happy regardless of your salary level.

          • Tony_Hall

            Actually he has put up a 3.1 WAR by BR and 6.1 by FG.

            That puts his earned money at between $16M and $32M

            He has been paid $17.58M to date.

            When you consider that the first $10M was to sign him away from football, he has been an extremely good value so far.

        • GaryLeeT

          Beyond staying healthy, don’t you think he needs improve on his record? I know the wins and losses don’t tell the whole story, but he lost, or didn’t win quite a few games, because of his melt downs. He has yet to prove that he has the mental fortitude to match his abilities, and at the age of 29, it’s now or never.

          • Tony_Hall

            Salaries keep going up. Look at what EJAX got last off-season and think more if Samardzija even stays about the same the next 2 years.

          • J Daniel

            I definitely would agree with you. Great stuff but has been inconsistent.

    • J Daniel

      No doubt, sickening!

    • cubtex

      To who?

      • Tony_Hall

        Everyone but you!

        • cubtex

          I assumed he signed with a team and was asking who he signed with.

          • Tony_Hall

            You really should read the article that Neil writes before jumping in.

            $68-$80M is the $17-$20m/year that Neil stated he is asking for at this time over 4 years.

          • GaryLeeT

            That’s funny you should mention that. I was trying to figure out the first time I posted on the CCO, and I was reading my old stuff. Quite a few times in the early days, I though i was bring up points nobody thought of, and Neil already had it written in his article right above my comment. Lessons learned. Oh, how long have you been commenting here? Did you used to go by anthony in the pre-disqus days?

          • Tony_Hall

            I think we have all had that happen before we learned the hard way.

            I used Tony H pre disqus. There was someone who went by Anthony, but that wasn’t me.

            Not sure how long on the comments, I would guess around 2008 is when I started posting. I read for a long time before ever posting.

          • GaryLeeT

            Tony H, of course I remember. I found my first comment at about the same time 04/04/08. I had been following since 07, but didn’t comment for a while.

          • Tony_Hall

            That had to take some time to find. I would assume you would get all wrapped up in bold predictions we all made, now having the answers and knowing who was right and who was wrong. I might need to do that someday.

          • GaryLeeT

            Since I linked Disqus with my old account when Neil brought it online, I just used the “Dashboard” search to find it in about 10 minutes..

          • Tony_Hall

            I believe I did that as well, but I just looked and I have over 11,000 comments, it might take a while to scroll back to the beginning.

          • GaryLeeT

            Holy crap, and congratulations on passing 11,000 comments. That has to be a CCO record, and I think some sort of recognition is in order.
            FYI, use the Dasboard search engine and type in things like 07, 08, Pinniella, or a buzz word of the time to get you there faster.

          • Dorasaga

            I still remember one of my first posts was in offseason 2006, and wanting Jim Hendry fired. Then he signed Fonzi, Lilly, Marquis, and the former football QB soon afterwards, make it an “all go.” I was satisfied. If you want to win it all, sign more!

            It didn’t work, with the farm depleted meanwhile bad draft choices. His mediocracy and misguided talent evaluation method (“smallest front office in baseball”) takes the blame.

      • J Daniel

        Come on Tex, 18 for Jimenez? He must be back in Colorado and smoking the Mary Jane now that it is legal there.

        • cubtex

          Who did he sign with?

          • J Daniel

            no, it is what he is asking. I know, or at least hope, he does not get that much.

          • cubtex

            Big deal. Asking and getting are 2 different things. Ervin Santana also is asking for 100 mil

          • J Daniel

            He must be in Colorado as well.

          • cubtex

            Big deal. Asking and getting are the same now? Santana is also asking for 100 mil.

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

            I wouldn’t pay him that but I’d sure like to have Ubaldo…

    • cubtex

      6 years at 140 will never look good for Tanaka

      • Tony_Hall

        Time will tell, no matter how many times you keep repeating this, you are doing the same thing all of us and all MLB teams are doing right now, trying to make an educated guess at his worth.

        • cubtex

          Why do you think this is such a slam dunk? It is a forced signing by Theo if he does it. He will have to overpay all the contending teams and have to go at least 6 years probably 7 for a pitcher from Japan who has not thrown 1 mlb pitch. He has a ton of wear and tear on his arm and a pitching coach from Japan who saw him quite a bit wouldn’t touch him with a ten foot pole on anything longer than a 2 maybe 3 year deal.

          • Tony_Hall

            Where have I said it is a slam dunk? And I disagree on having to overpay in dollars, as I have said and others have said before, structure and intangibles can do it as well.

            There were pitching coaches who said the same thing about Darvish.

          • cubtex

            Darvish has only pitched 2 years. I do not wish him any injury but lets not celebrate the long and illustrious career of Yu Darvish yet. Many were saying the same about Dice K after year 2.

          • Tony_Hall

            Unfortunately, since most of your predictions are doom and gloom, not sure I believe your sincerity on Darvish.

          • cubtex

            This will all be for naught anyway because Tanaka will sign with a contender. My gloom prediction for the Cubs :)

          • Dorasaga

            I never trusted the Persian to outperform his predecessors, though I’ve read something during his rookie year here (so, 2012), about how Trey Hillman and the whole Ham organization monitored his pitch count throughout the years, when Darvish was in Japan. I therefore found some differing opinions as to how the Persian will hold up to longer season and tougher plate discipline (hitters). He might not wear down in another year. I’m still crossing my fingers, though.

            What Cubtex has been saying is that Tanaka might be a T.o.r., but he only has at best three seasons ahead of him for any MLB team. Why throw in 140M and a no-trade clause (a definite must for the player’s side, methinks)? while the Cubs could not compete until 2015? It will be ugly very soon even if they win a World Series next year.

          • Tony_Hall

            You were against signing Darvish and monitoring pitch counts is not the same as being on a pitch count. Tanaka is a chance to bring in a 25 year old SP, who looks like a TOR guy, and should be at least a 2/3 at worst, for just money. No draft pick, no prospects to be traded, just cash. He is worth the risk. Consider the cost of David Price or even our own Jeff Samardzija, and yet both of them could break down in 3 years.

          • Dorasaga

            I wouldn’t place Shark the same level of Price. Both could break down in 3 years. The difference is between their level of maturity. Price has always been a proven ace since his debut (closing for the Rays). Shark has been inconsistent, still on a learning curve while his body is on the decline.

            In today’s baseball, all aging players past their age-26 “primetime” needs to reinvent themselves somehow, or they’ll become one-year wonder without much of a career (Prior as opposed to Moyer).

            I must add that Tanaka will not be asked to do so, just like DiceK was not. It didn’t fare well for DiceK, who even stretched too far and hid his pain, availed to multiple injuries and a career doom.

            It’s really important to give foreign players some time to learn and adjust. It’s not risk anymore. It’s cost. Part of the reason why Darvish and Kuroda adjusted quickly was because they were under American managers for multiple years.

            These foreign influence protected them by not abusing their pitch count, unlike Sadaharu Oh on Wada. These managers encouraged them to learn new fastballs and practice to master. Others like DiceK and Uehara learned the hard way. I’m still expecting Chen to recreate a Ted Lilly career by adjusting to pitch like a #3, giving 3-4 runs per game but holding together for 6 innings.

            Certainly, we are talking about a different kind of pitcher now. But the expectation (pressure) can be resoundingly similar.

          • Tony_Hall

            I wasn’t placing Shark at the same level as Price. I was saying what both of their teams are asking for them in trade is a cost, when added to what you will have to pay both of these guys, puts them both at a high value. Obviously Price is higher. But when comparing that cost to what Tanaka will cost and then factoring in age, makes Tanaka worth the risk.

          • Dorasaga

            I see it this way: it’s the timing yet. The Cubs is not building a World Series contender as the Yanks, Redsox, and Tigers have been doing the last decade or so, mortgaging future (trades) for now, and paying more on the free market (FA), knowing that they can overpay and get the job done. The Cubs will need to wait for at best, 2015 to see who’s staying and who’s not, if the new TV deal kicks in, the AA players show good sign to play solid MLB field, if and if and if–this is funny, how I used this in reverse to what anti-”if” fans want to see: Win now. But no.

            Look at the list for 2015 FA pitchers:
            http://www.mlbtraderumors.com/2013/02/2015-mlb-free-agents.html

            It’s a huge list of good to great pitchers hitting FA. The Cubs have more opportunities in the future than now, if they really can use those FAs to complement the fully matured farm talents. Again, nothing’s guaranteed, so I prefer them to pass on Tanaka and wait for 2015.

    • No Baseball In Indiana

      Ok.
      Whoever does that needs to be fired.

  • Tony_Hall

    A little football news. Lovie going to Tampa.

    • GaryLeeT

      That should surprise no one. Think they will like the Tampa 2 defense in Tampa?

      • Tony_Hall

        Over $5M/year. He will make them a respectable team, that is for sure, hopefully his OC Jed Tedford from Cal can do better than his past OC did in Chicago.

        • cubtex

          Lovie is a good man and a good coach. He never could hire an OC or get Angelo to give him quality on the offensive side of the ball.

          • Tony_Hall

            I agree. My coaching style is a lot more like Lovie then Da Coach, so I respect how he does things. But not sure I believe his style of defense and roster construction leads to an offense that will ever be able to be an offense that scores points like is needed in today’s NFL.

          • cubtex

            The Bears drove me nuts this year. The offense was exciting and fun to watch….but that Defense. That would have never happened if Lovie was still here.

          • Tony_Hall

            Neither would the offense have happened.

            Not sure how Lovie would have made the injuries have less effect.

          • cubtex

            Did you ever see running backs run like that ever against Lovie’s teams? Hindsight is 20/20 but they should have kept Lovie and brought Trestman on as O/C.

          • Tony_Hall

            And what makes you think Lovie would have accepted that?

          • cubtex

            kept Lovie as head coach. Why wouldn’t he. It is not a demotion. Trestman would have left Canada to be O/C I’m pretty sure.

          • Tony_Hall

            Most HC are not going to be comfortable hiring their future replacement as OC, unless it is someone they have worked with before. Plus,Trestman does not run anything close to the style of offense Lovie wants run. Never would have happened.

          • Ripsnorter1

            And the Bears GM cannot draft effectively.

            A long drought is coming in Chicago Bears land.

          • triple

            If Jerry Angelo was still the GM, this statement would be very true. Just in case you forgot, Phil Emery has only been here for 2 years, so his draft classes only have 1 and 2 years of experience. In last years draft he was able to stabilize the offensive line for the first time in over 5 years by drafting Kyle Long and Jordan Mills. And we will find out more about Marquess Wilson in the future, as he gets more opportunities behind Alshon Jeffrey whom Emory drafted the year before, which by the way will look like one of the best 2nd round steals in the draft for years! So there’s 3, and maybe 4 guys who will do alot for this team in the future. And Shea McClellin has shown improvement over his 2 years, and hopefully gets better.

            I see the opposite you see, the Bears will be much more competitive in the years to come due to the fact that they are building up their offense since they play in a completely offensive weighted league due to all the safety concerns for QB’s and WR’s.

          • SuzyS

            triple…Lance Briggs, in an interview yesterday, said the Bears had to “re-find their defensive identity.”
            I still subscribe to that…the Bears had the worst defense I’ve seen as an adult.
            They need to address it.

          • triple

            Yes you are right Suzy… My sentiments as well about the worst Bears defense I’ve seen in my life. I know the D was banged up all year and its a big transition when you go from Urlacher and Briggs to a bunch of rookies while everybody is injured (or retired), but I really was hoping to see some more improvement out of them by the end of the season. That simply did not happen. Hopefully the talent on the defensive side of the ball will be addressed this offseason.

            I look back at this season and there are a couple things that were really unsettling; 1) defense, 2) special teams. And this is what we’ve always leaned on with Lovie at the helm. And go figure there are 2 moments that stand out to me why we aren’t going to the playoffs. The Bears D not picking up the Rodgers fumble when no whistle was blown, and also the Gould missed FG in OT against the Vikings. Either of those and we are in the playoffs, but it probably didn’t matter as this team would probably be one and done.

          • Ripsnorter1

            I heard on 670 the Score that this was the worst Bears defensive in history.

            The times–they are a-changing in Chicago.
            Bears–worst defense ever.
            Cubs–historically worst two year period ever.
            Cubs & Sox–one of the worst combined W-L records in the same year in history.

            That’s enough of that!

          • Ripsnorter1

            2012 Draft Class–50% gone already.

            1) Shea McClellin, DE, Boise State
            2) Alshon Jeffery, WR, South Carolina
            3) Brandon Hardin, FS, Oregon State–already released–El Busto
            4) Evan Rodriguez, TE, Temple–caught 4 passes in 2012 and released.
            6) Isaiah Frey, CB, Nevada-Reno–waived but on practice squad.
            7) Greg McCoy, CB, Texas Christian–waived.

            Best player drafted: Alson Jeffery.
            McClellin had 4 total sacks in 2013–3 came in one single game, the other sack was actually two half sacks. He is too small to play DE in the NFL. He stinks vs. the run. (See Bears defensive stats vs. the run, and he is partly responsible).
            Verdict: B-U-S-T.

          • Tony_Hall

            Isaiah Frey played this year.

            http://espn.go.com/nfl/player/gamelog/_/id/15084/isaiah-frey

            Why not review the 2013 draft class? Because it was good.

            Just like in baseball, drafts are looked at by who makes it. Alshon Jeffery alone makes this a good draft.

          • GaryLeeT

            Not only did Jeffery have the Pro Bowl worthy stats, but he had to of lead the NFL in highlight reel catches.

          • Tony_Hall

            I bet he will be i nHawaii for the pro bowl. Someone will bow out and they will add him. (my guess is D Thomas when Denver makes the Super Bowl).

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

            Yeah, I don’t get where the Bears have drafted poorly under Emory. Kyle Long and Jeffrey alone should help fans feel good about his evaluation.

          • Tony_Hall

            You must have a thing against intelligent speaking GM’s.

          • SuzyS

            Cubtex, we all knew Lovie was gone when they hired Emery.
            Every GM wants his own guy…it was that simple.

          • Cubbiemacg

            Trestman had been turning down OC position since he left the NFL 6 years ago

          • Ripsnorter1

            Lovie proved what he could do:
            1. For the most part, he couldn’t get them to the playoffs.
            2. He couldn’t run an offense effectively.
            3. He couldn’t beat Green Bay.

            Not sad to see him go. No tears for Lovie from the Ripsnorter.

          • Tony_Hall

            You seem to off on the Bears info.

            Lovie could beat the Packers, he went 7-3 against them.to start his Bears career, then finished 1-8, in which he lost the last 6 games. Lovie should have been gone 3-4 years sooner, but found a way to hang around mediocrity and sneak in the playoffs to keep his job longer.

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

            Tedford should do a great job for him…

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

    Neil,

    Would you care to write up some sort of article on just exactly how much the Cubs have tied up on a yearly basis on projects such as Wrigley, Mesa, Caribbean, debt, etc? I know so many people complain that Ricketts doesn’t spend enough on the field but I believe that it’s virtually impossible with what he’s spending on infrastructure. There’s one fund of money so the bottom isn’t limitless.

    Would you mind researching that? You seem to understand that the Cubs are spending a small fortune and perhaps an article would help everyone to understand that Rickett’s isn’t a tightwad penny-pincher.

    Thanks in advance, either way…

    • Eugene Debs

      The Mesa project was paid for by the local government.

    • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

      I will do some digging and will post a report on what I find.

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

        Much appreciated…

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