Wrigley Field Restoration Update: Negotiations Break Down Between Cubs and Rooftops

The first part of the week has not gone the Cubs way. After the news surfaced the Cubs lost out on their off-season target to the Yankees, the Sun-Times reported the talks between the Cubs and the rooftop club owners broke off on Tuesday and the dispute will likely be settled in court.

The Cubs and the Wrigleyville Rooftop Association were thought to be nearing an agreement that would allow the Cubs to move forward with the Wrigley Field Restoration project. Tom and Laura Ricketts and Crane Kenney indicated during the Cubs Convention the two sides were close to a deal that would resolve the issues and keep the decision out of the courts hands.

The rooftop club owners were not happy with the remarks made by the Ricketts family and Crane Kenney which led to Tuesday’s meeting not going well for either side. According to the Sun-Times, after a “stormy negotiating session” on Tuesday the rooftop club owners “filed a defamation of character lawsuit against a stadium financing consult” and named the Cubs as “respondents in the discovery.”

According to the report, the Cubs viewed the legal action “as a shot across the bow that signals the rooftop owners’ intention to take further legal action to block two massive outfield signs needed to bankroll the project.”

The main holdup is two rooftop club owners on Sheffield Avenue whose “views will be impaired by the right field sign.” According to the report, the Cubs “explored the possibility of reducing the team’s 17 percent share of annual rooftop revenues or buying them out.”

One proposal that was made involved moving the see-through sign in right field on top of one of the rooftop buildings, but that was shot down because the Cubs would not be able to maximize the value of the advertising sign with it not being in Wrigley Field.

According to the report, “the rooftop owners demanded the massive video scoreboard planned for left field also be moved to the top of a rooftop building.”

Cubs’ spokesman, Julian Green, issued the following statement: “We have worked hard to reach a resolution with our rooftop partners which would have helped preserve their views, including reducing the number, size and location of signs. Unfortunately, they opted yesterday to reject the proposal and file this lawsuit. Since our approvals last year, we have been anxious to get the Wrigley Field renovation started. Yesterday’s action will certainly force additional delays to our project.”

Follow ChicagoCubsOnline on Twitter: @TheCCO and @TheCCO_Minors

Quote of the Day

"There are only two seasons ... winter and baseball." - Bill Veeck

Share on Fancred
  • CubbyDenCritic

    Tom Ricketts picked a bad week to give up on smoking.

  • BosephHeyden

    Just leave. Get out of Wrigley. The place isn’t worth pumping money into. The location isn’t all that great, you’re going to have to do more work in a few years anyways, and the neighbors are all clearly entitled d-bags. I know that Wrigley can bring in the rich yuppie crowd better than most stadiums hosting losing teams can, but if you’re really serious about a winner, “new stadium in the suburbs” is still the best route to go, and ultimately a giant, proverbial middle finger to every single one of those bar owners who would likely be bankrupt in a matter of months.

    • cubtex

      I agree.At first I was 100% against moving the Cubs out of Wrigley, but it is time to get in the Suburbs with a state of the art ballpark with ample parking. They will have to be like every team then and be forced to put a winner on the field to draw fans. As you say…they will miss out on the out of towners who want to visit the historic park and don’t care about the product on the field but who cares. If you put a good product on the field….people will come.

      • MikeT_2008

        I’m in the same boat as you. Was 100% against it but have done a 180% over the past years. If they lose out on people who just go to see Wrigley so be it.

      • Agustín

        They Will never leave wrigley field, The rooftop owners now that And that is why know they can press. Rickets payed 300mil for the stadium/land if I’m correct.
        If the cubs don’t play there then the land is not worth half of. They will not shoot themselves in the foot.

        • Dorasaga

          The property value of Wrigley is not solely on the Cubs. It’s in the busy area of Chicago, the neighborhood is more upnotch since the 70s, and one may argue that with a proper redevelopment, it will be good value despite the Cubs away to a greener prairie.

  • Ripsnorter1

    This is not surprising.

  • CubbyDenCritic

    Two ways this ends……pay the Lawyers and go to the mattress with these Roof Top owners or pay off the Roof Top owners to get out of the agreement…………either way, it will be more expensive then a Tanaka contract.

  • CubbyDenCritic

    Buster Only is saying that Cubs owners have money problems……never knew about all these expenses that came with ownership…………….and that Theo & Jed were lead to believe Ricketts had money to spend on free agents.

    • Ripsnorter1

      Please post that Buster Olney link where he says that Ricketts has money problems.
      We’d like to read about it.

  • The Dude Abides

    You would think the local business owners would step up and pressure the roof top owners before the business owners and roof top owners our surrounding and over looking empty spot where Wrigley used to be…

  • K_Gripp

    This is the time when Cubs fans get tired of the rebuild. We’ve had our worst three year stretch in the history of a team known for its futility. Our best off season pickup is a middle reliever and a bear who refuses to wear pants and cant hit. We missed out on the only FA that our FO through their hat in on. The stadium renovation that our timetable for winning is tied to is stalling out in political and legal battles. Our best player wants out because we arent competitive and other team’s best players don’t want to play here because we arent competitive. Now rumors are starting to surface that the owner doesn’t have the resources to put a contender on the field! All of our hope is resting on handful of 20 year olds up against high odds and high expectations to become superstars and organizational saviors. I might take up smoking. Won’t you join me in year three of my Wrigley Boycott?

    • Dorasaga

      I share your sentiment, but the worst stretch of losing for the Cubs was between 1948 and 1966. In fact, they never had a winning season during that looong and despicable Dark Age (was 0.500 in 1952, the only bright spot for those two decades).

      For 3 years: From 1960-’62, they lost 283 games, had a 3 year record of 0.389.

      The Cubs were 0.407 the last three years.

      • JasonOfTheBurbs

        not that those years don’t count, but I am over 40 yrs old, and the end of that stretch is still 6 yrs before I was born.

        So in a very real sense in my existence, this is as bad as it has been.

        I think the real issue is you always had some players to cheer for…good players on otherwise bad teams. Kingman, Buckner, etc etc

        Our “best” players right now are an almost-30 yr old pitcher that we hope finally puts it all together (Shark) and two “core” players that grossly underperformed last year in Castro and Rizzo.

        The only other interesting pieces on the team, to me, are Junior Lake and Travis Wood. And Wood is a good pitcher, but not electric or exciting to watch. Wood is the kind of guy you appreciate more when you have a good offense, as he will keep you in games.

        That is why I liked Soriano…at least when he was hot, he was very exciting to watch at the plate.

        • Ripsnorter1

          The last TWO years are the worst two year stretch in the Cubs’ history.

          • daverj

            Worse than ’81 and ’82?

          • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

            ’81 was a strike shortened season. The Cubs were 111-154 those two years.

            The last three seasons, the Cubs are 198-288 and are three wins short of four straight 90-loss seasons.

            The Cubs were 183-287 from 1960-1962. The only other comparable three-run stretch in team history. In the early 60s, teams played 154-game seasons and not 162.

          • Dorasaga

            Thanks, Neil. My math was off by four losses in my reply above. Both
            1960 and 61 played 154 games. They started playing 162 games since 1962.

            Therefore, the win percentage for that 3-year span was 0.386. That looks a little worse than my previous calculation. Both Billy Williams and Ron Santo weren’t “clicking” yet. It took them a few years to become the superstars we now remember.

        • Dorasaga

          That’s interesting. The Cubs might need more “name” players to keep us interested. But I think Tom U had some interesting points: how various signing of name players can block some great prospects from promoted. As an extended effect, the good prospects below the level of the great ones will be blocked as well. The priority concern for Hoyer & Co. should be streamlining more farmhands to fruit in Chicago, at least for now.

          • JasonOfTheBurbs

            Respectfully to you and Tom and anyone concerned about “blocking” the farm guys, I think it is a fallacy.

            Buckner was gone because we had Leon Durham, Palmeiro was gone because we had Mark Grace, Grace was gone because we had Hee Sop Choi. Lofton wasn’t retained because we had Corey Patterson. Even Brett Favre told see you later because of Aaron Rodgers. Bledsoe shown the door because of Tom Brady. Urlacher told to go retire…etc etc..

            I can think of countless times when clubs made the tough, and right, decisions to say goodbye to the big names to usher in the new (and usually cheaper) guys.

            If Baez or Bryant or Soler or Almora are ready, this FO can always trade or DFA anyone blocking their path. This is probably part of the reason they don’t give NTC to players…for the flexibility to always put the best players on the field from the system, and not be “stuck” with anyone.

            So they can go get a couple reasonably productive mlb players to make their mlb product sort of worth watching, and not block the future. You can have both.

          • Dorasaga

            R.Logic posted a projection closer to truth; above. His view is not contradicting what you say here; just the Cubs priority is different:

            http://chicagocubsonline.com/archives/2014/01/wrigley-field-restoration-update-negotiations-break-cubs-rooftops.php#comment-1212685848

      • JasonOfTheBurbs

        2006 was really really bad. All those injuries, so we played a ton of farm guys and no-names to replace the starters. The past 3 years have felt like 2006 over and over…like a Cubs Groundhog Day movie.

  • cubtex

    Scratch Scott Baker off the list. To me…..Who cares. Wasn’t a fan.

    A source familiar with the situation says the Cubs won’t be re-signing Scott Baker, who threw well for the Cubs the final month of the season after rehabbing from Tommy John surgery. He’s moving on. Former Cub Paul Maholm is available as is Jason Hammel, who pitched for the Baltimore Orioles last season. Both have been linked to Chicago.

    • CubbyDenCritic

      Clark will be throwing pitches off the Wrigley mound without wearing a pants before we see Maholm or Hammel in a Cubs uniform…….
      Theo will sign someone not mention, or go to S.T. on what we have.

  • paulcatanese

    The Cubs just keep losing out on all fronts. Tanaka, Baker, the Shark (who wants out) and now the rooftop owners filing suit that will put the rebuild on hold for how long?
    As I had mentioned earlier, move, use the saved money for a rainy day (or top free agent) and use it to move to the suburbs, what they have now is a no-win situation and will only get worse.
    On top of all of the above, the rumor (and I believe it’s a rumor) that Mr. Ricketts bankroll is drying up, put it all to rest and move, just move and start fresh.
    Many fans, myself included are really tired of all of this.
    The end of all is the idea of dropping WGN ending all
    of the fan base that watch them.
    The third down bell is starting to ring.

    • CubbyDenCritic

      No rumor about the Ricketts……as I reported last year, there is a serious money shortage according to the bankers on LaSalle St……T.R.is surprised of all the expenses that is happening with his team……and now lawsuits involving with the Roof Top owners…..those billboards need to go up so Ricketts can start generating revenue.

      • Rational Logic

        Can you expand on the ‘serious money shortage according to the bankers on LaSalle St’?

        Prior to my current job (I’ve since moved to Investments – much more exciting), I was an analyst in the analytics group for one of the banks who underwrote the syndication, and I was able to review the closing documents of the deal. I do not remember the exact liquidity figures, but I believe the owners put up approximately 50% cash for the Cubs (and Wrigley) and borrowed the rest.

        In reading the loan presentation, the Ricketts were pretty clear in wanting Wrigley Field as an asset. I highly doubt they would be willing to destroy/move/sell it.

        I just shot an email to the the loan closer on the deal asking for some details regarding the loan covenants as it relates to the collateral (Wrigley) to see if there are any “no-no’s” regarding the possible sale of Wrigley Field.

        The Cubs also operated the most profitable (in terms of net margin) franchise in baseball last year as well.

        • CubbyDenCritic

          According the banking industry, and now from other MLB owners, the Cubs ownership took the expenses of owning a MLB team too lightly…….Ricketts thought he could get out of that Roof Top deal and believed ad revenue would be pouring in money……..now with pending lawsuits and the tv contract issue, Ricketts now knows he has cash flow problem…….Theo was lied loo about getting money for free agents……..again, I want to know who from the Cubs told these local so called baseball experts that the Cubs was willing to spend $200 million on Tanaka……it might be new ownership, but it is the same B.S. we have heard from pass Cubs owners of how they will improve this team……………if the Cubs are profitable and are a big market team….The Cubs should act like one.

          • Rational Logic

            Well, I do not think Theo was lied to. That implies that Ricketts knew he would not get the advertising money, which means he knew the rooftops wouldn’t cooperate which is obviously not true.

            Also, it is illogical to construct the argument that since the Cubs are a major market team, they should spend like one if, as you have stated, there are cash flow problems.

            Spending $200M on one player may improve the team, but it does not necessarily improve the organization, both from a financial standpoint as well as from a development standpoint. The Cubs have dramatically improved the organization from the ground up- which means the top level (the major league team) will be last to show results, which we have seen.

            It is entirely too early to judge the Ricketts and FO as their focus has not been heavily on spending for the major league team, but through aggressively spending in the draft, international market, and reducing payroll to provide flexibility and create a leaner operating franchise to ensure system (minor league) stability and financial gains.

    • Dorasaga

      Don’t you think they can move to Indiana?

      • paulcatanese

        Sorry for not answering sooner. Have not even considered Indiana, I guess it’s possible as well as anyplace else.

        • Dorasaga

          It’s right beside Chicago, and who knows, without a MLB team, they might want a boost of publicity, luring the Cubs to move there by offering discount land or tax rebate.

          • paulcatanese

            Have to say I forgot about that area. Spent a number of summers at the “sand dunes” and a few lakes there. You are right, not that far and as good as any to move to.

          • Ripsnorter1

            Didn’t Gary IN used to be the Murder Capital of the USA?
            That area East of Chicago hasn’t always had the best reputation.

            “GO West, Old Man Ricketts! Go West!”

          • Tony_Hall

            NW Indiana is nice area, for argument sake more so south of 80. If the Cubs were to go there, it would likely be more to the Merrillville area.

          • Eugene Debs

            The Cubs are never moving to Indiana.

          • John_CC

            Unfortunately, I believe Chicago just took top honors.

  • daverj

    While we will never know for certain, I bet both the on-field product and the situation with the rooftop owners would have been a lot better if Cuban bought the Cubs instead of Ricketts.

    The more I read about the situation, it’s sounding like Ricketts didn’t fully understand what would be involved in both the on field and off field aspects of owning the team and turning it into a winner.

    • CubbyDenCritic

      Selig would never let Cuban own the Cubs.

      • daverj

        Agreed. But my point was just that the Cubs would have likely been better off.

        • cubtex

          No doubt. Cuban would not let this rebuild be like this. No way would he do a small market rebuild.

  • cubtex

    Shark(if not traded)
    Jake Arrieta until he proves that he is not a major league starter(June or July)
    Travis Wood
    Edwin Jackson
    Jason Hammel/Paul Maholm/Justin Grimm

    That is the rotation next year. Worse than the last 2 years.

    • CubbyDenCritic

      100 plus losses and another step backwards!….explain that at the next Cubs Convention.

      • JasonPen

        “If you’re not first, you’re last” – Ricky Bobby.

        I’d rather have 100 loses and a top 5 draft pick, then 80 loses and missing the playoffs with a 100 million dollar payroll…

        Eventually, our minor league guys will make it to the bigs and we will know better where to spend money on bigname free agents.

    • 07GreyDigger

      This is the same rotation from the last two years…

      • cubtex

        2 years ago. Dempster as a frontline starter. Last year Garza. It is not the same. It is worse

        • CubbyDenCritic

          And Maholm & Feldman are gone also…
          Have Faith…..Miracles can happen.

  • daverj

    I’ve been pretty supportive of Epstein’s rebuild and ultimately I think the Cubs will field a contender, but it’s going to take a few more years than most of us expected at the start of this rebuild in late 2011.

    While I’ve supported the most of the trades Epstein has made and his drafts, I’m going to be critical of Epstein in the following respect: He appears to have completely misjudged the free agent market. In hindsight, the correct moves were to get Cespedes and Darvish two years ago before the free agent market exploded (and teams started signing all their own good young players to extensions before free agency). I don’t claim to have know at the time that those were the right moves, but I’m not being paid $3 million a year to get this right … Epstein is. And he missed the boat on this one … the result of which is a few more years dedicated to rebuilding solely within the orgnanization.

    • cubtex

      More and More Natives Getting Restless by the Day. They better be competitive by 2015. I don’t think this can go on another year after this.

      • CubbyDenCritic

        2015..ha ha ha ha….now that is funny.
        Stay away from tall buildings and bridges until 2018.

        • cubtex

          What I am saying is that they cannot throw out the same garbage on the field for 2015. They cannot lose big to get draft picks. They cannot have a Valbuena/Murphy platoon at 3rd. An outfield of Sweeney/Ruggiano/Schierholtz.
          They need mlb players. They need to try and win and compete.

          • CubbyDenCritic

            Way I am looking at it….new ownership and front office by 2020 if things don’t improve………too many lies and money problems going on at Clark & Addison

          • cc002600

            I agree, but I think there really is something to the rumors about money issues for the Ricketts. I mean don’t you find it odd that Theo / Jed have spent almost NOTHING this off season ? Its mind boggling. and yes, I get all the talk about not spending big until you are ready to win. Yes, I get that, but they could at least spend some dough on the “B-class” FA’s, couldn’t they ? But haven’t even talked to talked to the D-Class FA’s, for cryin out loud. The only moves they make are signing fringe guys who were just cut by other teams. WTF Their payroll will be about 75-80M. I’m sorry, but that is embarassing

          • Dorasaga

            I disagree. The Pirates and Royals have been signing “B-class” veterans for years. How those turned out? Thirty years of losing, if we add up for both clubs. It’s not necessary to sign any expensive veterans, past their prime and into a decline phase, until the timing is right.

          • cc002600

            Yes, I understand, but there are other factors that have caused to be bad all these years. They are small market that can’t keep good players when they get expensive. Cubs don’t have that problem. So you just can’t hang your hat on that.

          • sshaun23

            What don’t you like about this lineup in 2015?

            1.) Alcantara 2b
            2.). Castro ss
            3.) Baez 3b
            4.) Rizzo 1b
            5.) Bryant Lf
            6.) Lake Cf
            7.) Soler Rf
            8.) Castillo C

            I think our lineup will look something like this, and this lineup looks great to me. And it’s payroll friendly so we can spend money on pitching. Which we obviously need.

            I don’t get why people are so negative. I like what our front office is doing.

          • JasonOfTheBurbs

            It sounds awesome. But Felix Pie, Tyler Colvin, and Corey Patterson were supposed to be awesome too. Not every prospect works out, I guess is the point. Maybe Karma owes the Cubs so much after 100 years that they get extra lucky with all the prospects.

            Either way, at least in my case, the issue is less with the 2015, 2016, or 2017 roster, and more with today’s team.

            I am trying hard to find a reason to watch this squad…last year was tough…not much has changed with the roster for this year. It is just a trying time to be a fan of the mlb club.

          • CubbyDenCritic

            Maybe entertainment by Clark will take the game off the mind of fans during the game.

          • CubbyDenCritic

            Missing Almora….remove Lake.
            Put Almora at the top of the batting order.

          • Bryan

            I think you’re dreaming that all this aligns like you state here.

          • cubtex

            4 rookies at once and 3 of them batting 1,3 and 5 in the lineup? Yes…not reality.

          • Ripsnorter1

            Soler hasn’t proved that he can hit AA pitching just yet. I hope he can, but he hasn’t
            proved anything much even in Class A ball so far. Oh, he has proved he can get injured,
            lose his temper and pout. He’s still raw, and may not be done by 2015.

            Alcantara: last year was a nice, but not great, breakout year for him in AA.
            Yes: Class AA ball. He hit .271. What was good about it was 15 HRs, slugging .451.
            You should note that he fanned 125 times in 2013. Prior to that he had a top k year of 76 k’s.
            So he’s swing for the fences now, and adding an extra 50 K’s to pay for it. His 31 SB was nice,
            and that was a first as well. I know nothing about this player, but if someone would just
            show me his stat line for his career with no name involved, I would think “PEDS.”
            If he could do this at the ML level, I’d love him. Let’s hope he can, but nothing is proven yet.

            SO there are two things that might not work out for 2015–at least.

  • cc002600

    Something I don’t understand about the so-called “money troubles” for Ricketts.
    Passan’s article said the Ricketts only plunked down $170M and financed the remainder. I believe it was done that to satisfy Zell’s desire to reduce his tax liability upfront. I was under the impression, Rickets would otherwise have put down way more and financed much less. Because when you think about it, $170M is really not that much money.

    So if that is true, wouldn’t that say they have cash burning a hole in their pockets by not having to plunk down as much as they had originally set out to do ? or maybe the answer is yes, and now they are spending it on rehab of Wrigley ? ugh. I don’t know.

    I just can’t believe they are having these issues with money, when their payroll is near the bottom of the league, and their ticket prices are near the top. Plus, they now have additional money coming from national TV and other sources. WTF. Now I’m starting to wish Cuban had the team. Unreal.

    • DWalker

      The problem is the financing, from my udnerstanding, they can’t pay down principle until after a certain date so the interest is where a big chunk of meny is going. There is a huge outlay of money right now that just goign into the interest, maintaince, defered expenses etc that we don’t see as payroll on the field. While they probably are overselling the expenses, I can understand where they would consider earleir payroll sunsustainable. The offer they made here is probably an indicator of were they stand, but we don’t know how much was front loaded or less likely, back loaded. Also, they don’t really have any new revenue coming in. The radio contract is not going to be team favorable for the next couple of years and the tv situation will eb intertestign to see what happens.

      • cc002600

        all good points, except that yes they do have new money coming in. Each team in MLB will get an extra $25M from national TV contract this year.

        and the main point that I was trying to make is that I would think that since they only had to plunk down 170M, which is nothing, I would have thought there is lots of cash lying around to pay off the nut, that originally was to be put down upfront for purchase, and less financed.

        • Dorasaga

          Which also means that the Cubs is not ahead of other clubs in MLB. In order to gain a financial edge, new revenue is necessary.

  • Plain English

    I have followed this site for several years and this is the first time I have posted anything. Having been a long-time Cubs fan (since 1971), I think I am as patient as anyone – waiting for a truly outstanding team and a series title. But this rooftop issue really irks me. As much as I love Wrigley Field, I believe it’s time to shut it down and move. None of us watch baseball in general or the Cubs in particular because of Wrigley. Celebrate the 100 years and let’s turn out the lights. Leave the rooftops behind and get going. Yes, I do realize it takes years to build a stadium – probably by the time it’s done, the rooftop contract will expire – whatever!

    • JasonOfTheBurbs

      Agreed.
      Lot of room in the West Suburbs…I vote Naperville!

  • 07GreyDigger

    I have a friend who owns a bar near Wrigley. I don’t think I ever want to go there again.

    • CubbyDenCritic

      Why?
      Water down drinks?
      or
      Ugly Chicks at the bar?
      Keep your friends close……
      But keep your enemies even closer.

  • CubbyDenCritic

    Neil….anyway you can have more information of why Theo failed to get Tanaka?……what were the issues by Agent Close of not getting his client to sign here…..and what was the final bid by Theo……..was the Yankees the only choice by Tanaka?

    • cubtex

      didn’t you see what Gammons said? Cubs didn’t have the $ to finish the deal. Never were seriously in it.

      • CubbyDenCritic

        but earlier, everyone (experts) said the Cubs were going to blow away the field……some said over $200 million………I was the one said the Cubs were not going to sign Tanaka…..I just want to know what was the final offer by Theo…..and was a non NTC issue part of the Cubs deal.

        • cubtex

          The only way he was going to sign with the Cubs is IF they blew the field away. Didn’t have the resources to accomplish that. He was always going to go to the Yankees. You know that and I know that.

    • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

      I do not know anything right now different from what has been reported.

  • Henry

    I am all for moving the out of Wrigley but I do not think that will happen in the near future. I believe ( i have no facts to back me up) that part of the plan was to build the Cubs from the ground up. This would involve an number of losing seasons. The second part of the plan is to bankrupt the rooftop owners. Bad season/bad product on the field leaves the rooftop owners with a bad product to sell. The Rickets have already purchased a couple of Rooftops. I read recently that one or two more rooftops have been put on the market. The others have to be close to being underwater. Another year or two and the rooftop owners will not be able to afford their Mortgages. I am seeing Groupons and Living social coupons for the rooftop experience. I believe the rooftop owners are getting desperate. Maybe I am giving the Ricketts too much credit but I believe that was part of the plan.

    • cc002600

      That is an interesting theory. I would not doubt it.

  • No Baseball In Indiana

    T.R. is trying to move the team to Miami.

  • cubtex

    Breaking News! Angels to sign Ian Stewart. Lol

    • cubtex

      Tough Day. No Tanaka. Rooftop issue. Scott Baker says he is moving on and now Ian Stewart is not coming back for his 3rd go around and signed with the Angels. Oh Vay! I am not Jewish so forgive me if this is misspelled

      • SuzyS

        Tough day only because of the stupid rooftop issue.
        While it might have been exciting to sign Tanaka…we might have dodged an albatross contract…Just noticed that Tanaka’s contract has a full No Trade clause as well as a 4 year opt out.
        For somewone that hasn’t thrown a competitive pitch in the US, let alone mlb…it’s a pretty nice deal.
        I initially was all for a Cubs Tanaka deal. But the deeper we got into it…the more skeptical I became…So let’s see how he does…on someone else’s dime.
        With, or without cash…It is at least one year too early to open the wallet for FA. Just means that next year they DO have to really start building.
        Ian Stewart??? Maybe they can trade him to India….or better yet, Iran.

        • cubtex

          Joking Suzy. I was 100% against signing Tanaka. He will never hold up for 7 years. He is a win now pitcher.

  • Eugene Debs

    To think, we began the off season thinking we had a shot at Girardi.

    • Ripsnorter1

      What you got this off season was a handful of PR moves.

    • cc002600

      boy, that seems like 100 years ago now, doesn’t it ? :-)

  • Pingback: Wrigley Field Restoration Update: Cubs Apply for Permit, Rooftops Tell Lawyers to Proceed Accordingly - Chicago Cubs Online()