The Starting Pitcher Picture Remains Fuzzy for the Cubs

Several teams, including the Cubs, are looking to sign a starting pitcher or two before Spring Training begins. The Cubs could be waiting for the free agent market to play out a little to see who is left that would fit their needs. Jed Hoyer said they are looking for “innings” and the Cubs have been connected to Paul Maholm and Jason Hammel. But the Cubs might have internal options that would fit their needs.

A.J. Burnett, Ervin Santana and Ubaldo Jimenez figure to be the next starters in line for deals. Then the teams that missed out on those three could turn to the likes of Bronson Arroyo, Paul Maholm and Jason Hammel to give their managers an additional option in the rotation. For the Cubs, there are a couple of pitchers already on their 40-man roster that could compete with Jake Arrieta and Chris Rusin for the final two spots in the rotation.

The Cubs have asked Carlos Villanueva and Justin Grimm to report to Mesa prepared to start games. Villanueva is in the final season of the two-year contract he signed with the Cubs and would have more value as a starter than as a reliever in July. Grimm has a big arm; one that many feel projects better as a late-inning reliever. But Grimm has starting experience and the stuff to be successful in a starting role.

Non-roster invitee, Tsuyoshi Wada will also be in camp trying to earn a spot on the roster. Then there are the young arms in Kyle Hendricks, Dallas Beeler, Eric Jokisch and Neil Ramirez that could make their big league debuts at some point during the upcoming season.

So while the Cubs wait for the dominoes to fall in the free agent starter market, there are at least options that can be explored during Spring Training if the front office is unable to add “innings” to the roster.

Jeff Samardzija

Jeff Samardzija would like to stay with the Cubs and help them win baseball games. The front office would like to sign Samardzija to an extension. But the two sides remain far apart in the numbers department and Samardzija would like to have an idea of the Cubs’ timeline for competing again.

While Jeff Samardzija is preparing for Spring Training at the Cubs’ facility in Mesa, the front office continues to have dialogue with other teams about Samardzija.

The same two teams that were hot on Samardzija’s trail earlier in the winter appear to be interested again … the Blue Jays and Diamondbacks.

Alex Anthropolous told the Blue Jays’ beat reporters the price of free agent starters is coming down, which could help Toronto in their efforts to sign either Ervin Santana or Ubaldo Jimenez. Ken Rosenthal reported Toronto has done extensive background work on Ubaldo Jimenez and are still interested in Ervin Santana.

The Blue Jays or Diamondbacks could still turn to the Cubs for Jeff Samardzija before Spring Training begins. But both teams would have to meet the Cubs’ high asking price for Samardzija. The Mariners are looking to acquire another starter, even with Scott Baker on his way to big league camp on a non-roster invitation … but according to Ken Rosenthal, the Mariners “do not appear focused” on Jeff Samardzija.

Suk-Min Yoon

The Cubs were thought to be interested in signing RHP Suk-Min Yoon earlier in the off-season. Yoon would give the Cubs some much-needed depth in the pitching department, if he is healthy. Yoon did not sign with a team before the holidays but returned from South Korea after the first year as his agent, Scott Boras, worked on finding him a contract.

Four teams have reportedly offered Yoon a contract and he is believed to be negotiating with two of them. Yoon has been working out at Scott Boras’ facility, the Boras Training Institute, preparing for Spring Training.

According to Darren Wolfson, the Twins are interested in Yoon and “are monitoring his situation” but do not appear to be willing to meet Scott Boras’ asking price. The money needs to come down in order for the Twins to sign him. Wolfson heard the asking price for Yoon might be two years, $12 million. According to Paul Hoynes, the Indians were interested in Yoon until they found out Scott Boras’ asking price.

Scott Boras told Nick Cafardo late Wednesday night “the Red Sox are one on many teams interested in South Korean Suk-Min Yoon” and there should be clarity with Yoon in 10 days.

Scott Baker

The Cubs lost one possibility for their rotation Wednesday when the Mariners announced the signing of Scott Baker to a minor league contract. The Indians, Rangers and Royals also offered Baker a minor league contract but he decided Seattle was the best landing spot for him.

Baker will compete for a spot in the Mariners rotation this spring. If he makes the club, Baker will be paid $1 million in base salary for the season. The deal is believed to include an incentives package worth $3.25 million that would run the total for Baker to $4.25 million.

The Cubs rolled the dice and signed Baker last winter in the hopes he would return from Tommy John surgery in time to be traded in July. Baker suffered a setback during his only outing in Spring Training and spent a majority of the season working his way back to the big leagues. Baker made three starts for the Cubs in September.

Matt Garza

One final Cubs related note on the Brewers’ Matt Garza, at least until Spring Training or the regular season. The Cubs received a very good package of players from the Rangers for Garza, but could the package have been even better?

According to Peter Gammons, the original deal for Garza included second base prospect Rougned Odor. But when the Rangers reviewed Garza’s medicals, Odor was removed from the deal. Rumors last summer suggested Odor was in the talks but it was unclear at the time as to why he was not included. Keith Law ranked Rougned Odor, the offensively minded second baseman, no. 64 on his list of the Top 100 Prospects list that was released Wednesday … and Baseball America ranked Odor as the Rangers’ top prospect.

News and Notes

Early in the off-season the Cubs were connected to Bronson Arroyo due to his time in Boston with the Cubs’ current front office. Arroyo has not been mentioned as a possibility for the Cubs since, and that is likely due to his age and asking price, not to mention Arroyo might be looking for more than what the Cubs can offer him. Arroyo told Jayson Stark he has not received an offer this winter, not even one he could turn down. 12 teams contacted his agent this winter but not one of them made an offer. Stark reported Arroyo is looking for a three-year deal in the $30 million range. Arroyo could be looking at a two-year contract with an option and an AAV around $10 million.

During an interview on MLB Network Radio with Mike Ferrin and Jim Duquette, Brewers’ GM Doug Melvin mentioned a stat from last season that few might be aware of. According to Melvin, “Last year, 67 percent of all free agent signings ended up on the DL, and you always need to be aware of it, and cautious.”

The Minnesota Twins signed former Cubs’ reliever Matt Guerrier to a minor league contract. The deal was announced Wednesday and includes a non-roster invite to Spring Training.

The Padres decided to make a change in their radio booth and did not renew Andy Masur’s contract. Andy Masur is an excellent announcer and he did a very good job calling Cubs’ games with Pat Hughes and Ron Santo.

Former Cubs’ farmhand Garrett Schlecht, who asked for and was granted his release from the Cubs, signed a minor league contract with the Rockies and will enter Colorado’s system as a left-handed pitcher.

Former Cubs’ starter Randy Wells is feeling good and wants to pitch in the majors again.

Follow ChicagoCubsOnline on Twitter: @TheCCO and @TheCCO_Minors

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"Never discourage anyone who continually makes progress, no matter how slow." - Plato
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  • http://theboardridersuite.wordpress.com/ Theboardrider

    Glad Baker’s getting an opportunity to pitch and Seattle should be good for his ERA. But I just can’t help but think he owed the Cubs a bit more than that. At the same time, it’s his career and this could be the last contract he ever signs. Gotta do what he thinks is best for himself and his family. There is no loyalty in sports, it’s not as if the team would have loyalty toward him. Just doesn’t happen. The Lakers contract for Kobe earlier this year was a total aberration.

    • JasonOfTheBurbs

      Kobe has name value and sells tickets, and is still good. I know what you meant, but that wasnt loyalty as much as self-beneficial for the lakers.

    • paulcatanese

      Interesting, you are correct with “no loyalty in sports” yet people are expected to have loyalty
      to team Theo, in fact “blind loyalty” and are down arrowed if they show any different opinions. Not saying you, just a general observation.

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

        I don’t think it’s down arrows for different opinion. Sometimes I will see something so blindly negative I want to down arrow it but I rarely do. And if I do I use Ray’s tactic and explain why. Personally I think all the angst about arrows is weird. They are what they are. A quick way to either voice disagreement or like-mindedness on a topic. When I post on this site I am opening myself up to critiscm, either overtly or just an arrow. Yes, it puts a smile on my face when I get a bunch of up arrows, which is almost never But I don’t take it personally when I don’t. It’s just a quick way to say nothing nore tgan “agreed,”

        • paulcatanese

          Never crossed my mind that you would give a down arrow, ever, you’re loyalty is of a different nature, and you support that.

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

          And as my late father would always say when we had differing opinions. “That’s what makes the world go ’round Matt.”

        • texcubnut

          Wish I could give you a hundred up arrows for this post. Well said, boardrider.

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

            As I said fellas, a bunch of up arrows to put a smile on my face. It’s been a disheartening day at work so this was flattering…

      • triple

        I find it insulting that you insinuate that there are people here that have this “blind loyalty” for Theo that you are talking about. Who here expects that anyone should have blind loyalty for anyone or anything? Not me! I don’t expect anyone here to follow blindly into what Theo and the FO is doing. You know what “blind loyalty” is? A cult. If that is your view on society and your Cubs fan brethren, what does that say about yourself?

        • cubtex

          Relax with your insults tonight!

        • paulcatanese

          You’re on a roll, how do you really feel?

  • 07GreyDigger

    I wonder if the Cubs are waiting for the price to come down on the second/third tier of starters.

  • Zonk

    This question on the rotation is an interesting one. What are we trying to accomplish by signing a FA starter?

    I don’t think the purpose is to win more games; I think the FO is looking, for the third year in a row, to do a “Sign and Flip” with a short-term FA. It worked well with Maholm and Feldman, where we got good pitching, and long-term talent, for little risk.

    Think we can go 3 for 3?

    • calicub

      Don’t forget they also traded one of their top teir starters in those two years (Dempster and Garza). Does 3 for 3 mean Shark is a gonner too? lol

      • Zonk

        True that……though I think those were slightly different. I think Maholm and Feldman were signed with the specific intention of trading for long term value. Scott Baker too, so I guess you can say we are 2 for 3.

    • J Daniel

      Zonk is BACK!

  • cubtex

    I was curious to see how the roster has evolved since the FO took over. You can make your own opinions if they have done a good job. I only took the players off the 2011 roster that have been traded or let go via fa.

    2011 roster
    P-Cashner(Rizzo),Dempster-(Hendricks and Villanueva),Zambrano-(Chris Volstad),Garza-(big haul),Marmol-(Guerrier,)
    Sean Marshall-(Travis Wood and Sappelt)
    C- Geo Soto-(Loux) and Clevenger
    IF Jeff Baker,LeMahieu,Carlos Pena and Aramis Ramirez.

    OF- Byrd,Colvin, Reed Johnson and Soriano-(Black).

    Out of all those players the Cubs net gain to help mlb roster- Rizzo, Travis Wood, and possibility for 2014 is Grimm,Olt,Hendricks and possibly Vizcaino

    2012 roster
    Off season addition by Theo
    OF David DeJesus-traded for cash

    OF Dave Sappelt-released
    P- Maholm-traded for (Vizcaino), Michael Bowden-released,Chris Volstad-let go,Travis Wood, Lendy Castillo(Rule 5)
    IF Ian Stewart-released, Luis Valbuena

    2013 roster
    OF- Nate Schierholtz,Scott Hairston-(traded),Ryan Sweeney
    P Edwin Jackson, Carlos Villanueva, Feldman-traded for (Arrieta and Strop), Fujikawa-injured, Scott Baker, Hector Rondon(Rule 5)

    C- Dioneer Navarro-FA

    2014 roster so far
    P Wesley Wright, Jose Veras,Jake Arrieta,Pedro Strop
    C George Kottaras
    IF Donnie Murphy, Tat Man
    OF Ruggiano and Chris Coghlan

    I might have missed something. Not positive or negative. Just pointing out how the roster has turned over. Are you happy with this?

    • CubbyDenCritic

      Don’t forget Dale and several coaches !
      and two wasted years.
      The Rizzo / Cashner trade looms big now……can Rizzo be our first baseman?…and are we going to see Cashner be a big time pitcher?

      • cubtex

        My opinion is that this FO has gotten zero return for position players. They have flipped some pitchers for decent returns but have done nothing with the position players. DeJesus-Cash, Soriano- 18 mil of his salary for a mid level prospect, LeMahieu for nothing. Not trading Barney. Not trading Schierholtz.

        • Zonk

          Have we had a position player with any real value though to trade? That’s the real problem.

          • cubtex

            True but couldn’t they have upgraded the outfield with players who would have brought back value? Recall when they signed DeJesus? Carlos Beltran was on the market as was Coco Crisp. Beltran signed a 2 year 26 mil with the Cards and Crisp eventually re-signed with the A’s. Beltran could have been flipped for a really good haul and Crisp has and had more value than DeJesus.

          • Zonk

            Hard to say if that was an option. Maybe both those guys wanted to play for contenders. We don’t know.

            RE: Sign and trade, We were able to offer Feldman and Maholm a starting slot; that’s why they signed with us. Feldman parlayed his starting opportunity into a good contract this offseason; he got exactly what he wanted.

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

            Seems that their strategy is sign pitchers and use them to get prospects in trades. They like their odds better than with hitters. A serviceable Feldman or Maholm brings back good players. Unless Beltran plays like an all-star he wouldn’t have brought much, and I don’t think most people thought he’d be as good the past 2 years as he’s been.

          • Eugene Debs

            Possibly Olt?

            Plus, they’ve drafted good position players…I have no issue with the team trading for pitching.

        • CubbyDenCritic

          We were lucky we got someone to take Soriano, and give us a pitcher back…….
          Dejesus, could had a nice mid level prospect in return, but Ricketts needed the money….and the Nationals got their prospect for Dejesus….
          LeMahieu, FO said that Barney was their starter….and now Barney is blocking Alcantara….
          Barney, no trade value….
          Schierholtz, I think FO missed the trade value on him last season….will be similar as to Dejesus…

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

          Pinyiero for Hairston jumps to mind. He’s a good looking young pitcher. I also think Adams looks promising. Both of the guys we gave up were trades that basically were the only option, so to actually get project-able prospects in those situations took some doing.

        • Ripsnorter1

          Theo and Jed have done a great job! We are set to run for the WS for decades to come.
          Vizcaino will probably win 20 games for the next 6-8 years in a row. Arrieta will probably nail down
          15-20 wins for us this year. And that’s before we flip him at the trade deadline for 8 or 9 prospects.
          EJackson is a cinch to win 20 for the next three years running. I see Kotteras nailing 25 HRs in a part time role. Barney will hit .300 and win another Gold Glove. Castro will be back better than before. He’s got a .335 BA year coming with 30 HRs and 100 RBI batting leadoff. Rizzo will prove to be the steal of two centuries. Mark my words: 45 HR and 150 RBIs in 2014.

          Unfortunately, none of this will be enough. I still see us losing 100 games in 2014.

          • triple

            You know what blows my mind about this comment? And I know it is in jest, but seriously, what blows my mind is when I look at who the two posters are who have “up arrowed” this statement. Paul Catanese and Rayray/Cubtex (the guy who made two accounts to help support his insane arguments and give himeself more “up arrows” as if there are others in support of his “facts”).

            It’s just quite funny to me that the two posters here who always are wondering who gives them down arrows are the two who will give the “up arrow” to the guy who can make the most negative statement. In a way, it’s like you’re the two guys who give the bully the high five after watching him pick on the small defenseless kid….really sad.

            :(

          • cubtex

            What are you talking about dude? You are getting upset about who up arrows a post that I felt was funny? Here you go Triple. I will up arrow your post. Take 2 aspirin and get a good night sleep

          • paulcatanese

            Yeah, Rip the bully:)

    • Zonk

      Minor note: I think you can also include Pierce Johnson and Paul Blackburn, comp picks for allowing A-Ram and Carlos Pena to walk.

      Nobody should be thrilled with our current ML talent, but I am happy with the return on what assets we had in 2011. Our roster was a mess; literally the only player I would want back is Cashner, and I would probably still take Rizzo over him instead.

      The real problem is that our farm system has not produced much ML-ready talent from 2011 to 2013. Barney, Lake, Castillo and Russell is about it. That’s not good, and the real reason we are treading water. Compare that “haul” to any other team in the NL Central. That’s not on this FO, it’s on the last one.

      • JasonOfTheBurbs

        Good call on the Pierce comp pick…didn’t realize that came from ARam. A bit surprised we got a comp pick for Pena!

      • triple

        This may be the most rational post I’ve ever read on the CCO…thanks for proving that one can actually point out some glaring problems with this entire organization and not just make it a negative Theo-hating post.

    • Zonk

      BTW, check out the Cards 2011 roster. They won the WS, and they have turned nearly all of it over; Molina and Holliday are only remaining starters. Pitching staff is totally changed.

      Of course, unlike the Cubs, they have had ML-ready talent to take those slots

      • cubtex

        Look at the offseason moves from 2012 till now. You have to admit it is pretty disgusting. Look what the Twins have done, The White Sox, the Astros. The teams that finished behind the Cubs. EJax was the only player added making more than 7 mil per year. No significant trades made in 2 years either and before you say Feldman(not significant imo)

        • 07GreyDigger

          The difference between the Cubs and other situations is how dire straits this team was in when Theo took over. They had little of value on the roster and pretty much nothing in the farm system. The man rebuilt the farm system in just two years and finally when we do our sign and trades, will have much better talent to bring up and plug in. Will the talent work out? Time will tell. But if they don’t, you can bet that’ll be the end of the FO.

          • cubtex

            Digger. He started with Baez and Vogelbach already in system. Traded every major league player on the team for prospects and got 2 top picks because he put together 2 last place teams. Do you really think building up the farm system in “only” 2 years was extraordinary the way it was done?

          • Ripsnorter1

            Don’t forget that we also had Jr. Lake and DJ LaMahieu as well.

      • mutantbeast

        Cards had a minor league system. Cubsd didnt. Talk to Mr Hendry as to why. You dont turn toxic waste into gold overnight.

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

      MLB roster blows. I think the FO is measuring themselves on the minors though.

      But yes, I’m getting to where I’m sick of the losing. It was such a remote possibility anyway, but for some reason I was really disappointed in Tanaka sweepstakes. In the end we didn’t even offer the most money. It may turn out to be a good decision, but we need some excitement.

      I still believe in the FO and will support the team fully, but I will go on record that if we aren’t markedly better after next off-season I will be ready to jump on the bandwagon that runs over Theo. I want improvement in the guys we have and some of the youngsters up by the end of the season. Even if it’s just Baez and Alcantra. And I want to sign the a couple of the best available free agents next off-season. Next year will be the time to put up or shut up. Time to make a splash and in 2015 we should be a competitive team. Probably not a postseason winner but well over .500 with some young all-stars.

      • JasonOfTheBurbs

        Oh boy…sh!t just got real if theBoardrider admits it is competitive-in-2015 or bust. I may have to bookmark this post! :)

        agree with all you said above…except I don’t expect anything from Schierholtz.

      • Eugene Debs

        You know, I hope I’m not the only one that will be disappointed if this team craps all over your optimism! One thing I can count on is that you will be a supporter of the direction of the team. You balance the cynics.

        But, I hear ya man, I hear ya.

    • JasonOfTheBurbs

      In retrospect, Sean Marshall for Wood was at least a break-even, so that is good, as Wood is cheaper.

      Dempster trade relies on Hendricks at this point…wait and see.

      Z and Marmol given away for nothing apparently.

      Corey Black might be something…wait and see.

      Should have traded Aramis earlier…would have gotten something at the deadline for a slugger.

      I don’t mind the Rizzo trade…solid defensive 1B with pop…I think his avg will get better.

      The Maholm and Feldman trades were potentially really solid as both are mediocre. The Garza haul will be huge if Olt pans out.

      Some I already call bust/pointless…but still a lot that is wait-and-see.

      • 07GreyDigger

        Z and Marmol are nothing, so getting nothing for them makes sense.

        As for Aram, he had a no trade clause and when Hendry tried to dump him, he wouldn’t let them.

        • mutantbeast

          Indeed-Aram turned down trades to the Stankees and Angels both iafter the 2010 season.

  • steve

    We have heard for the past year or more that Samardzija wants to stay with the Cubs and the Cubs want Jeff. If both sides want the same thing and they’ve been trading numbers, what’s the hold up? It’s like watching Ross and Rachel from Friends.

    • cubtex

      A huge difference in $,wanting to win sooner rather than later and the desire for a no-trade contract. Other than that…they are on the same page :)

    • CubbyDenCritic

      Heard same thing from Garza and few other players……it is all PR stuff.

    • Eugene Debs

      I’m sure we’ll “trade him for inventory” and “roll forward the savings.”

    • JasonOfTheBurbs

      Speak for yourself…I only watched for Monica.

  • CubbyDenCritic

    Starting Pitching looks Fuzzy?………I can also name a few other positions that look more fuzzy.
    Is Clark a Fuzzy guy?
    We have plenty #5 pitchers…….no need to sign a guy for a few million……..and maybe Clark can throw a few innings!
    I like to know what went on between Theo & Scott Baker !……
    Asking price for Shark will be higher in July then during Spring Training…….
    Lets suppose Theo & Jed fails to deliver us a winner……who should be our next GM / President?…….would it be better to hire a guy who might be an ex-player who can relate to players better?

    • Eugene Debs

      Fuzzy = the outfield, second base, third base, starting pitching.

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

        I see Homer Bailey in a Cubs uniform in 2015.

        • cubtex

          I think Masterson might be a possibility. I don’t think Cleveland will sign him.

          • Ripsnorter1

            I don’t think the Cubs will sign either one.

          • cubtex

            They better do something big next offseason or it will get berry berry ugly in Chicago!

          • CubbyDenCritic

            you telling me that Cubs fans will revolt?……they might tar & feather Clark?……and only show up for one Cubs home game instead of three!……just wait until local daily sports radio people start talking…….will take more then Baez & Bryant to save Theo by 2016.

          • CubbyDenCritic

            if they are connected with draft picks…..Theo will not sign them……….besides, these guys will want to be on winning clubs….not with a last place team.

          • texcubnut

            Bailey, Masterson, James Shields and other solid starting pitchers should be available in 2015. I have not checked on who might be available in 2016 but the Cubs need to be in on some of this pitching to coincide with the arrival of prospect position players and I’m certain they will be.

          • cubtex

            The real question is will those guys be interested in the Cubs? Cubs could be worst team in baseball in 2014.

        • triple

          I want both Bailey and Masterson pitching for the Cubs in 2015!

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

            I could absolutely see that happening. In fact I’d put the odds at 50% or better. If not both of them than one of them and someone else. We have young hitters coming up so we should be melding into a potent lineup. We will need pitching.

            I see Theo signing the top 2 free agent pitchers on the market next year. Whoever they are, there is always a surprise person. Maybe someone that is poised to break out this year. But Masterson and Bailey make a ton of sense.

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

            And I know someone will make the valid point that we still have to convince them to come to Chicago. But with potent young hitters it will help. And I believe next year is when we will be willing to overpay if necessary.

            Also, don’t discount the clout Theo has in this league. Players know what he has accomplished and will trust him to give them a shot at a ring. I know many of us don’t like the direction of things now but almost unanimously among baseball people, there is a feeling the Cubs are setting up for a special run.

  • John G

    Lance Berkman retiring. He was a Cub Killer but a class act. We wish him well. Does he belong in the HOF alongside Biggio and Bagwell?

    • CubbyDenCritic

      No

    • CubbyDenCritic

      Bagwell & Biggo is not in the HOF…Biggo in 2015…Bagwell, never.

  • CubbyDenCritic

    Chicago has several stigmas ……one is that Owners do not take care of their players……we heard that with the Bulls and the Hawks……and still hearing it with the Bulls……which is all non sense…..BJ Armstrong was part of that talk with Jordan, Pippin and the #1 pick who banged up with his cycle………..and when the Blackhawks had bad times, it took some winning to get Bobby Hull and Tony Espisito to return……With the Bears, Urlacher has become a problem child at the end….he felt the Bears were not loyal to him… ……..with the Cubs, where do we begun?….Milton Bradley, Jacque Jones, Troy Hawkins, Sosa, Ryan Theroit, Todd Hundley, Carlos Zambrano, Aramis Ramirez….the list goes on…..Neither the Owner or the Player don’t have to show any loyalty when the contract expires……that is part of the game today….the game is a business……many years ago, ball players had second jobs in the off season…….Rich Hebner nickname was the “Grave Digger”….these guys made $20,000 back in the 60′s…….Mark Fidych, made $19,000 in his rookie season, and he sold out stadiums for his owner and other owners…..after his career was done, he was hauling manure around in a pick up that later fell on him. Players today want millions, and not hauling manure for a living later in life.

  • Rick Barkan

    Can anyone explain why Theo paid Scott Baker 5 mil and he did nothing. Why pay a guy who can’t pitch 5 mil i don’t get it.

    • Zonk

      Baker was originally projected to be healthy in May, but suffered a setback. Baker was pretty good before the injury, had he returned to anywhere near that form, $5.5 mil would be a bargain. It was a risk, sometimes it doesn’t work.

      In hindsight, it was a waste of money, but all baseball deals carry elements of risk; $5.5 wasn’t a huge amount to wager. Just didn’t work out.

      • cubtex

        lol. when was Vizcaino “projected” to be healthy?

    • cubtex

      just one of the many “I don’t get moves” From the EJax signing to bringing back Ian Stewart. That is not the only head scratcher.

      • Rick Barkan

        Edwin Jackson probably laughs everyday for the contract he received. Great pay to lose games.

        • cubtex

          What do you think EJax would get in the FA market this year? 4 year 40? Maybe?

          • Zonk

            Would he get 3 for $30mil, which is what is left on his contract? Probably not, IMO, but probably not a ton less than that either. It wasn’t the worst signing, and it will look better if E-Jax’s results more closely match his xFIP and other stats from last year

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

            It’s quite possible EJax has a good season in 2014. Not guaranteed but he has great stuff. I’m hoping for a good year from him.

          • Eugene Debs

            He’ll be better.

      • GaryLeeT

        I am sure you have heard of the phrase “rearranging deck chairs on the Titanic” and I see the moves as that. Even though they are trying to tank the team for high draft picks, it can’t be too obvious, so you get token bouts of “see, we’re trying”.

        • cubtex

          Unfortunately it is very obvious. Lol

  • Tom U

    Eddie Orozco ‏posted this a little while ago on Twitter:

    I appreciate the opportunity I was given with cubs but more importantly the relationships and people I have met. My boys for life.

    This usually means a player was released. I am trying to get confirmation.