Rambling While the Cubs are Improving?

Hello again, everybody. It has been another week, and the Cubs are yet again 5-5 in the last ten. This could change before I finish writing this as they are currently leading the Nats 3-1. However, 5-5 is better than 2-8 and that is an improvement. It is happening slowly, but this team is maturing. And that is a good thing. A very … good … thing.

And with that, let’s get to some ramblings.

  • Before I get any further, let me say this: Bringing up Kris Bryant this season makes zero business sense. None whatsoever. And it will not happen. This conversation is a waste of time. Not happening.
  • If we can exclude Veras, the Cubs bullpen has been rock solid this season. 2.88 ERA, 1.16 WHIP, both rank in the top-5.
  • The bullpen is primarily made up of young, controllable players with other good options, like Vizcaino, Rivero and Rosscup in the pipeline.
  • And while on this topic, James Russell has 18 straight appearances without giving up an earned run. And I expect him to be traded. He is hot right now and only under team control for one more year.
  • Remember what I said about Bryant … yea, same goes for Baez. It makes zero business sense. Baseball teams are a business first. The bottom line matters most.
  • I talked about this recently, but I think I am most excited about Jake Arrieta. He is under team control until 2017 and has been sensational lately.
  • But yea, trading Feldman was such a horrible decision. Man, if we only had Feldman and Marshall, this team would have two World Series titles in the past four years.
  • It’s 5-3 in the 8th now … that is meaningless to you because it will be Friday when you read this. Still makes me laugh.
  • I read a very interesting breakdown in SI about college baseball’s move to small ball, due to the change in aluminum bats, and how pro scouts are having a very difficult time gauging power numbers for college players.
  • The Cubs were discussed and the article explained Schwarber’s selection because his power stuck out so clearly based on the rapid decline in home runs. The SI is a week old, so it should be available online if you are interested. It’s a good, quick read.
  • Castro and Rizzo are both back to the .290 area with solid power numbers. I expect both to have the best power years of their respective careers. Actually, I believe Castro has already done that.
  • I ask this question, if Rizzo ends the season at .290 with 35 and 90, what word or phrase do you use to describe his season? I am not saying he is the best or anything like that, but that is a very, very good year for a 2014 MLB First Baseman.
  • Let’s hope Junior Lake is okay. He has the potential. I threw out a comment last week that I knew would drive conversation, and it did. Do I think Lake will ever hit 35 homers in the majors … well, I don’t know.
  • What I was saying is that he has raw skill and talent. And if harnessed and developed properly, he could pleasantly surprise all of us. To say it will never happen, well that is your prerogative, but I would also like to see your bank account.
  • I mean, if you can predict the future, you would be a millionaire 200 times over, right? I mean, Biff Tannen was.
  • I think it is time for Mike Olt to learn more about the great state of Iowa. And learn it very, very soon. Every day at-bats are too important right now.
  • So much for pulling in a decent prospect for Nate Schierholtz. I guess the saying “career year” exists for a reason.
  • This team really needs someone who can steal a lot of bases. Speed is becoming increasingly important (not that it wasn’t before), and Bonifacio cannot do it alone. Especially from the disabled list.
  • I will leave you with this. I was at a lengthy company meeting this week. In a breakout session, we were all asked that familiar question, ‘If you could have dinner with one person, dead or alive, who would it be?”
  • Is it wrong that Harry Caray went through my head, and I actually thought about him for multiple seconds?

And the Cubs win! The weekend is upon us, the Bulls drafted Dougie McBuckets, and it’s the summer. Happy weekend to you and yours! Be safe and enjoy it, my faithful CCO friends.

And until next time …

Stay Classy Cubs Fans!!

Follow ChicagoCubsOnline on Twitter: @TheCCO and @TheCCO_Minors

Quote of the Day

"It's not that some people have willpower and some don't. It's that some people are ready to change and others are not." - James Gordon
Share on Fancred
  • Pingback: Rambling While the Cubs are Improving? - Cubs Chronicles

  • John_CC

    -its still Thursday in my chair…and Cubs win!
    -I’ll take .290 30 85 and call Rizzo’s season on helluva step forward. We know RBI is a team dependent stat so even if its 80 how can you hold it against him?
    -Business or not, there is no good reason to bring Bryant up…he’ll be mashing behind Rizzo soon enough. He’s as close to a sure thing that Cubs fans have seen in a long time. And he seems like a perfect match to learn from the old veteran Rizzo. I can’t wait for a couple .400 OBP .500 SLG hitters back to back…and then another .500 slugger when Baez arrives. The Cubs will have a 3,4,5 a true heart of the order soon enough…even if Manny has to hold down the fort for a few months! ;)

    • Jeffrey Rogers

      I can’t wait to see Bryant, Castro and Baez hitting behind Rizzo’s .400 OBP / .900 OPS.

      We need a couple of .350+ OBP guys in front of him though.

      I would like to see Logan Watkins up soon and hitting in the 2 spot in front of Rizzo.

      • BillyFinT

        I’ve been curious how Castro approaches his game as a “protection” behind Rizzo, who’s been reinventing himself, and performed.

  • Ripsnorter1

    I wouldn’t use my bank account to bet the farm on Jake Arrieta. Sure, those 10 starts look very, very nice, but remember: he has made 82 of them in the ML. Here’s his ML ERAs for his career:

    4.66
    5.05
    6.20
    4.78–2013 7.23 with Baltimore, 3.66 with Cubs
    2.10 thus far in 2014

    What’s to say this isn’t his “career year?” It makes sense that it is, since he’s 28 years old.

    Travis Wood in 2014 isn’t as good as Travis Wood of 2013.
    3.11 in 2013; 4.55 in 2014.

    I don’t think the second half will be as kind to Jake as the first half. He has great stuff, but so does Edwin Jackson and Scott Maine. Control is their only issue. Hope he can keep it up, but I’d hedge that bet.

    • Tony_H

      What’s to say his time with Bosio hasn’t helped him unleash his potential and figure things out? A little optimism wouldn’t hurt you!

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

        Agreed. Optimism is good for the soul! Bosio does incredible work with pitchers. That’s what makes me think it may be for real. And that Arietta has real stuff that Wood doesn’t.

        • DWalker

          yeah, he’s not as good as last year, but Wood also got really roughed up on a couple of outings that really did a number on his ERA.

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

            Very true. He had 2 really poor games that are dragging that ERA down. He started the season with 5 or 6 quality starts and has had a few since then.

            Wood may not be quite the pitcher he was last year, but on a team with a better offense he would easily win 15 games a season.

      • Swish23

        Jake Lahair. your plane will be leaving soon. hope you enjoyed ur stay in too good to be true land. next stop; Ricardo Montablan and Fantasyland.

        • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

          Nicknames are not allowed on this site due to past abuses. Please read and follow the site’s commenting policy.

          Thank you

        • Tony_H

          So any player who turns their career around you will never like as it may not last forever? Sad way to follow your favorite team.

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

      Arietta seems to follow in the path of Shark and Scherzer. Guys that didn’t figure it out until late 20′s.

      With the “stuff,” Arietta has it’s easy to think the best is still yet to come. But I’ll give Rip credit that he could regress as well. I don’t think he will but he could. The guy was the home opening starter for the Orioles and people around baseball have always thought he was capable of being a TOR. Bosio really seems to work wonders with underachieving pitchers. That’s one thing good that came from the Sveum era. The hiring of Bosio.

      • BigJonLilJon

        Thought I read some where that Bosio added a cutter to Jakes arsenal and that as been a big reason for the resurgence.

        • gary3411

          That cutter, although it’s more of a combination slutter, is dirty and he has great command of it for sure.

          This guy is going to be good, I just wouldn’t sign him to an extension yet or maybe ever as control issues tend to pop back up randomly on guys like this.

          Wood however, I’d give him 7-55 right now.

          • cubtex

            7 years? Why would you want to give 7 years to Travis Wood?

          • BigJonLilJon

            your right… it is more of a combo slutter. Seems to work well is all that matters. I would not go 7-55 for Wood yet. I always felt last year was a lucky year and this year he hasn’t proven much to change my mind yet. Arrieta has always had the “stuff” to be a true ace, just lacked control/consistency. He seems to have found something and I would rather lock him up now. Wood can have a 3 or yr deal at 7-8 Mil I guess.

          • cubtex

            RHB are hitting .289 with a .374 OBP this year vs Travis Wood. His stuff is not going to get any better as he ages. He is a decent back end guy and there is no need to tie those guys up for 7 years.

          • BigJonLilJon

            A 4/5 I think if cheap and healthy.

          • Tony_H

            Where do you hear talk of 7 year contracts for Wood?

          • cubtex

            just responding to one of the posters above.

          • Tony_H

            I see it 7-55. No chance I give him more than 3 years and since he has 2 years left I wouldn’t do anything.

          • cubtex

            agreed. there’s no point.

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

            “Slutter!” Yes

      • cubtex

        You always use that argument that he started opening day for the O’s one year. Dempster started multiple opening days for our Cubs and who did the Cubs trade Dempster for?
        One other point- Isn’t EJax an underachieving pitcher? What happened to him?

        • Tony_H

          No one is perfect, not even you.

          • cubtex

            Really?

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

          I really don’t have the energy to debate with you today Tex. But I wish you a great weekend…

          • cubtex

            It’s all in fun Rider. Have a good weekend as well. Are you happy with the OKC draft?

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

            Right you are my friend :))))$

            We’ll, believe it or not I was puzzled. But I trust in Sam Presti and for him the benefit of the doubt because he has drafted so well. I like McGary a lot and think he can replace Collison. But with Napier sitting there I don’t know why we didn’t grab heir apparent to Derek Fisher and get McGary at 29. But who knows? GM’s know stuffi don’t and maybe there was a team tht liked McGary in that area. There was talk here all week about how much the Thunder liked McGary.

            Huestis is similar to Andre Roberson who they drafted last year and one if them will replace Sefolosha. Huestia has a crazy lon wingspan and betrer from 3 so I think Roberson will be gone.

            Overall I approve just because of Presti’s record. But they have to make a move for an Ariza or similar player. If they make that move then the offseason is a success. Have to wait and see but I trust my GM.

    • cubtex

      I put those stats up the other day. Hopefully he has turned the corner but he had flashes with the O’s like this too. Time will tell.

      On another note- I like the Bulls draft and what they are trying to do. Hopefully they can get Melo and finally have some scoring options. If they can hold onto Taj and have a frontline of Noah,Anthony and Taj to pair with D Rose……pretty darn good!

    • mutantbeast

      Sandy Koufax stunk his first 5 major league seasons also, then Norm Sherry taught him to throw a curve and a change up and he went on to a hall-of fame career. Red Ruffing had a losing record his first 5 seasons with Boston, went to the Stankees , and ended up in the HOF. Who knows maybe Bosio is the C ure Arrieta needed

  • triple

    There are definitely alot of questions surrounding Junior Lake and what his future can be. At the least he is a good 4th OF with some power, but it would behoove Ricky Renteria and the Cubs organization to let him play every day and see what he can develop into. After all, he’s 24 with 6 years of team control and his 1st arbitration year isn’t until 2017. All they need is for him to trend upward and then have a break-out (possibly career) year with close to 30 dingers and then if needed, they can trade him to fill whatever needs they have at the time. Not saying this will happen in 2015, or even ’16, but it’s a possibility that in a couple more years guys like Bryant, ,Alcantara, Almora, Soler, and/or Schwarber will be ready to fill OF positions, making him expendable.

    But two things we know for sure about Junior Lake…
    1. He hustles
    2. He’s a tough kid

    No reason not to let a kid like that play every day, especially while waiting for other prospects to come up and fill in those holes in the OF.

    • Steve Baier

      Agree totally! The Cubs’ outfield situation is pretty pathetic at the moment, and Lake being the one OF with real potential (and some speed & power), he really needs to be out there every day.

  • triple

    Also, I just wanted to point out that the Cubs beat a 1st place team with a good pitcher in Doug Fister on the mound. Not too shabby for a team that played to a record of 13-27 from opening day to May 16th, and 20-17 since then.

    I believe the Cubs are still playing really good baseball for about 6 weeks and there’s no reason for it not to continue even though they’ve got a long road trip and some stiff competition up to the All-Star break. I think that will be a good time to evaluate where this team is 2.5 years into the rebuild, especially with lots of reinforcements making their way through the farm system and guys like Alcantara knocking on the door. They’ve faltered recently against 2 division opponents that just happen to own them. They are a combined 7-14 against the Pirates and Reds while they are 8-10 against the Cardinals and Brewers. I think this team is gelling quite nicely despite a less than spectacular looking roster, and it doesn’t hurt at all when guys like Castro and Rizzo are both on pace to knock in about 90 runs a piece by the end of the season.

    • Sonate

      I also was contemplating the point in your first paragraph. The team’s recent performance has been encouraging. But the 2nd half will likely be worse, partly by design. Hammel will be traded for sure, and I doubt his replacement will perform as well in the 2nd half as Hammel did in the 1st half. Also, Shark will likely be traded — another blow to the pitching staff’s 2nd half performance. Finally, I don’t see both Castro and Rizzo quite duplicating their 1st half numbers. And it appears that the only way the Cubs win is if both of these guys hit, because no one else is really capable of sustained solid offensive performance. However, next year potential looks bright. This year, I will probably lose my $1K bet (in March) that the Cubs would finish with over 70 wins in 2014.

      • DWalker

        First, let me say I don’t expect a good second half. I just don’t. However, to play devils advocate. We haven’t won with shark and Hammel on the mound. Shark especially despite good performances, we haven’t won. So, saying we will automatically be worse without them, really isn’t fair because we haven’t won when they did pitch. So batting wise we are going to lose some real stars right? Seriously though, who are we looking to give up? Is anyone at all on the list making a day in day out impact? Valbuana is probably the closest thing. So, we gotta be worse trading all these guys right? Well, chances are they will bring up alcantara and a couple of other young bats not named bryant or baez. if even one or two of them have a hot start aren’t we likely to be better?

        • triple

          Funny, I was saying that same thing about the prospect of losing Hammel and Samardzija a week ago. We do have a nice W/L record in Hammel’s starts, but terrible in Shark’s, so while guys like Wada, Jokisch, Hendricks, and Beeler get a shot, if even one of them shines a little bit, I don’t see why we would just drop off the table. And yes you are correct, it’s not like we will lose any impact bats, with Valbuena being the closest thing.

      • JasonOfTheBurbs

        I don’t see as much a dropoff with trades this year.
        How many of Samardzija’s game have we won? Same with Hammel. Not a reflection on their efforts…just sayin.

        Some of the AAA options should be plug and play, and give us, hopefully #3-4 starter quality outings, which will be fine.

        The concern for me would be if they bring in old has-been SPs to fill the gaps after trades. No point for me, as a fan, to watch aging/bad SP that aren’t part of the future as temp stopgaps.

        I don’t think they will go that route this year though…seems like they will go with Dallas, Wada, Kyle, Rusin, and those types.

  • GaryLeeT

    “Man, if we only had Feldman and Marshall, this team would have two World Series titles in the past four years.”

    The Cubs could have lost 90+ games with or without Feldman and Marshall. I think it would be more fair to assess trades after the games start to mean something.

    • Tony_H

      I think that was his point, they would have lost a lot of games anyway, but they turned those short term guys (and others) into players who are performing well so far and will be around for awhile.

      • GaryLeeT

        As I stated MANY times before. Let me know when that translates into winning seasons. Until then, individuals performing well, mostly in the minors, means absolutely nothing. I know it’s all we can do, but I long for the days when we rooted for the Cubs, and the team had an identity to connect with. Now we have to sit here year after year after year, and bide our time by pathetically rooting for individual performances on a TEAM sport. I am absolutely sick of it.

        • cubtex

          Yep. Sad days indeed. How many wins does this fun group of Cubs players have this year again?

        • Tony_H

          I still root for the Cubs and at the same time, I am enjoying watching Starlin Castro and Anthony Rizzo looking really good this year. And outside of Jose Veras, Edwin Jackson and Carlos Villanueva, I enjoy watching this pitching staff. They are 20-17 since May 17th and have been fun to watch.

          • cubtex

            you put 20-17 in there like that is great. They have 33 wins and only the lowly Rays have less and they are tied with the DBacks

          • Tony_H

            It has been good since then. The Cubs are turning the corner, don’t miss it.

          • cubtex

            I better not blink. :)))

          • Tony_H

            You would have to open your eyes to blink :)

          • BigJonLilJon

            to late

          • cubtex

            really? they are out of last place and have put themselves in the race? I must have dozed off for a couple of years :)))

          • BigJonLilJon

            I agree in that I always root for the Cubbies. But the way this line up as been, it all hinges on the success of Rizzo and Castro. If they aren’t hitting…. we cant score. yes they are 20-17 since May 17, but we consistently trot out a line up of which over half the hitters are batting 204 or less. Starting pitching has been good, bull pen as well. Good news….. the schedule after the break is much easier. The bad news…. we will have traded off 40% of that starting staff.

          • JasonOfTheBurbs

            should have read your comment first before I replied to Tony. Agreed agreed agreed.

          • JasonOfTheBurbs

            “fun” is a bit of a stretch. They are partially fun. The part of the lineup that is filled with Baker/Coghlan/Sweeney/Schierholtz/Barney/Ruggiano (as starters not bench guys) is consistently depressing to watch.

            The young bullpen, Rizzo, Castro, sometimes-Boni, sometimes-Luis, sometimes-Castillo, most of the SP, and sometimes-Lake/Olt are the positives and “fun” part for me as a fan.

          • Tony_H

            Re-read my post, you just stated what I stated in a different way.

          • JasonOfTheBurbs

            yeah…looks like it. that makes you a genius too!

        • triple

          bunch of band wagon fans up in here I guess?

  • Tony_H

    You bring up young controllable players and I had just been looking at that very thing as well. (Edit: bullpen arms)

    Pitchers (FA year)
    Hector Rondon 2019
    Justin Grimm 2020
    Neil Ramirez 2021
    Pedro Strop 2018
    Arodys Vizcaino 2019

    Add in all the arms that are about to come up from the minors Rivero, Hatley and Rosscup and it looks like the bullpen should have a steady supply of power arms. Plus the SP’s that get converted to the pen.

    I would bet they take a chance on one or two of these guys and try to convert them to starters at some point.

  • Steve Baier

    I would like to see Olt come down to Des Moines too. Logan Watkins has been playing some 1B for the I-Cubs; maybe he could go up & be the backup 1B? Chris Valaika plays a lot of 1B too, but I think they’d have to DFA someone & add him to the 40-man.

    • Denver Mike

      Yeah, I don’t see Olt’s future at 3B anyways. If he were at AAA he could rotate between 1B, OF, DH, and occaisionally 3B if Bryant has an off day or they decide to test him in the OF towards the end of the year. While I was for giving Olt a shot at the beginning of the year, he should have been sent down after back-to-back months (Apr/May) batting in the .100s. Now I’ve barely seen him in June when he could be getting everyday ABs. Isn’t AAAA Chris Valaika playing 1B most days in AAA? Why can’t Olt take his spot?

      • Steve Baier

        Valaika does play 1B a lot. Vitters has played there some too (and, Vitters has quietly put together a pretty solid June at the plate).

  • Tony_H

    In case you missed it, Manny Ramirez took the spot of 29 year old Casper Wells on the Iowa roster.

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

    Alot of positive enthusiasm on the board today in response to the Ramblings. Love it

  • BigJonLilJon

    While I can agree regarding not bringing Bryant up…. I have to disagree on the “makes zero business sense” comment. How about if he were brought up, it may/will sell more tickets, seeing as though Wrigley has looked pretty empty pretty often. So call it …. makes little business sense!! My humble opinion.

    • Guest

      Starting Bryant’s clock now as opposed to next year makes no baseball business sense. If you play him this year (in a lost season), Cubs would have control of him through 2020. If you wait until about April 25 next year, the Cubs would have control of him through the 2021 season. Bryant could be a $15-20 million per year player. The extra season of team control has a ton of value not just in the salary but in the overall prospects of the team. I think it is unlikely that the incremental ticket sales in 2014 would be anywhere close to the value of the extra year of control.

      • Denver Mike

        Precisely

      • cc002600

        I hear that all the time, but let me ask this. What does it matter when his clock starts if you end up signing him to a deal like they signed with Castro & Rizzo ?

        I get the whole point about delaying the FA clock, but it amazes me that we sit here concerned about saving money on the payroll 6 / 7 years from now !! Is that what this has come to ? holy cow…. wow

        • triple

          Scott Boras… that’s what it matters.

        • Jeffrey Rogers

          You ever think that maybe his defense is not MLB worthy at this time? There is no net gain by bringing him up at this time.

          Yes you get some excitement for a few weeks if he adjust to the pitching but the fact is he can’t play MLB caliber third base at this time.

          If you feel he MUST be up this season you play him in the OF for a few weeks at AAA and play him in rf or lf.

          Just my opinion.

  • paulcatanese

    Let’s talk about the wall, been there for a number of years. And for a number of years, players have been getting hurt running into it,,,,why?
    How come there has been 0 effort to make it safer, it’s like an intersection that has a bad record for injury, but nothing is done about it until someone is killed.
    Ricketts has the money to make it better, but for one reason or another has not.
    Could it be that the “wall” cannot be touched or changed? Or is it that Ricketts has made the choice to ignore something that will not produce revenue?
    He has spent millions on things for the future, but ignores the past (wall) that
    if ignored, someone will eventually be hurt seriously if not a fatality.
    Then again it would mean the end of the Ivy, a strong point for tourists and
    TV ads that appear with it.
    Maybe the players union should think about stepping forward and protest about the safety of players, as if they don’t, they are just as guilty as the owner of the park.
    Maybe those large screens that are about to go up should show the images from over the years of players crashing into the wall would have an impact,
    it not then it should.
    At the least, put padding over the doors, but do something Mr. Ricketts.

    • Denver Mike

      The bricks and ivy are protected by the City Landmark status, something the Cubs unsuccessfully tried to fight when it was proposed. If the city is worried about the removal of a few bricks to make the doors wider when they put the bullpens back there, then there is no way they are going to let the Cubs cover the bricks or remove them completely. I know Lake hit the door, and not the bricks, but there really isn’t anything the team can do about it. I will be the first to say that Ricketts deserves the blame for the product on the ML team, but you can’t go blaming the bricks on him too.

    • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

      Paul, this is going to come off like I’m defending the Ricketts family, that is not the case.

      The team and the family cannot touch those walls, any part, without Landmarks approval. And that includes the doors. They are considered part of the bricks and ivy. The team has to have approval to put the logos on the doors and are not allowed to paint the logos on the doors. They have to use pressure sensitive vinyl letters and decals.

      Hoyer talked about adding padding to the doors this morning and sarcastically said it would take three years to get that approved.

      The deals the team signed and made 10 years ago to expand the bleachers are really hurting the club today.

      • JasonOfTheBurbs

        even more reason to move. Wrigley locks them in to so many negatives.

  • cc002600

    “Bringing up Kris Bryant this season makes zero business sense. None
    whatsoever. And it will not happen. This conversation is a waste of
    time. Not happening”

    Question: are we shareholders or fans ? I get the whole point, but to be honest, I am a fan and I want the team win. Whether or not they make money is not really my problem or concern. And yes, before I a ton of responses back about how if they make money they can invest in a better team, blah, blah, blah……yea, I get that, but still I think we’re going way over board here in worrying about the bottom line more than wins and losses.

    When you finish in last place year after year after year after year, playing meaningless games, its gets old. Real old.

    • Denver Mike

      I’m not a cattle rancher or a butcher, but I still care about what goes into the food I eat, and I try to be knowledgeable about how it is prepared. In that same vein, I might only be a fan with no financial interest in whether or not the team makes money, but I still recognize that it is a business and understand how a business operates.

      • cc002600

        Yes, I understand its a business too, but whether or not they make money is really not my problem, as a fan.

        When you buy a car, are you more concerned with getting the best price or the profit of the dealership ? Sorry to sound callous but whether or not the dealership makes money is not my problem.

        • Denver Mike

          I understand where you’re coming from, but it completely disregards the fundamentals of how a business is run. I understand that you don’t care if the team or car dealership makes money, but that doesn’t mean the other side of the equation doesn’t exist. It’s like saying I hate rain, it needs to go away. I don’t care if plants need it to grow, and I need plants to breathe, that’s not my problem. I just need the rain to go away.

          You don’t care if car dealerships make a profit, but can you manufacture your own automobile? Can you rebuild the engine or re-engineer the CPU when it shorts out? If not then I hope the dealerships are making money off if someone, or else they won’t be there when you need them.

          Ask fans of the Seattle Supersonics, Hartford Whalers, and Cleveland Browns what happens when their owners can make more money somewhere else.

          • cubtex

            You should go on a world tour to council top business owners what they should do instead of what they are doing since you act like you know better.

          • cubtex

            You should go on a world tour to council top business owners what they should do instead of what they are doing since you act like you know better.

          • Denver Mike

            You should call someone who respects your opinion enough to care.

          • Denver Mike

            It’s Friday afternoon, don’t you and your other super smart, ultra-rich, fat cat friends have a circle-jerk to engage in? Or are they tired of you too?

          • cubtex

            I was just giving a kid in their 30′s a little career advice. You seem so interested in what businesses should do and how it should be done….go for it.

          • Denver Mike

            It’s really weird, because I visit the CCO to talk about baseball, yet I feel like I’m on some low-rent version of CareerBuilder all of a sudden.

            You are correct that relatively speaking I am a kid compared to you, which is what makes me even more proud about what I’ve accomplished in life, and in my career. What I tried to emphasize time and time again, is that for most people success in life makes them humble. In your case it seems to have done the exact opposite, and the fact you think that I would be looking for career advice from someone like you even reinforces it further.

          • cubtex

            Thanks again for pointing out again how people should act feel and do. You are wise beyond your years.

          • Denver Mike

            Agreed

          • Jeffrey Rogers

            You mean the way you try to tell people with WS rings how to run a baseball team.

          • JasonOfTheBurbs

            this isn’t a car dealership. these are billionaire sports owners. If they strictly wanted to make money, there are other ways to do it (like the ways they became billionaires in the first place).

            So expecting them to behave irrationally and emotionally is not so far-fetched. They bought a sports team for the perks and for their ego.

            I think not bringing up Bryant is less about money, and more about bringing him up starting next year when we are ready to be more competitive. If we only have him for so many years (as no guarantee he will sign an extension ala Samardzija) then I want his productivity over the best possible stretch of time.

            Having said that, the reason it would wait until next year is because the team sucks so bad this year due to not spending money on better FA options for OF and elsewhere.

            Owners suck. Fans rule. That’s life.

          • Denver Mike

            I agree with you completely. I wasn’t the one to compare them to a car dealership, I’ve worked at one and that comparison is disrespectful to all other businesses out there. I thought the comparison was a little but of a stretch to begin with, but I play along.

  • BillyFinT

    Soccer Distraction: Losing sucks. This coming Tuesday, USA representation in Brazil will need to perform. After their heartbreaking loss to Germany, the team will show Belgium how it has improved, and is the team to beat.

    I’m also rooting for Costa Rica, who played three inspiring football matches against historically strong franchises. This is coming from a traveler who just returned from Europe but never been to Central America. Viva World Cup!

  • JasonOfTheBurbs

    If Rizzo finishes with those numbers, he is very much a lefty DLee, and I think that is a solid compliment, as Lee was solid defensively with good avg and power. I think Rizzo has oppty to do all that, but with less K’s, higher OBP, and hopefully less DP groundball outs than DLee too.

    As for Harry Caray dinner…I think only caveat is you need to throw out a year: 1970′s Harry, 1984 Harry, late 90s Harry? I would take 1984 or 1985 Harry.

  • Swish23

    so baseball, as is any sport is about winning. most importantly winning a championship. the business side exists as we cannot expect a business to go broke. call it 1a and 1b for winning and making dough.
    so, if bryant, baez, and alcantara join castro, lake, castillo and rizzo in september, do the cubs draw 10K more fans per game? absolutely.
    10K more fans at $40 per tix equates to 5.6M more in income. have them play in april and may with the same attendance increase, and there is 17M more in income.
    if we are gonna worry about the team with the highest income in baseball in 2012, that has 3rd highest tix price, 5th in revenues, and has shaved almost 60M off the payroll from the Trib high, plus has higher tix prices than when Trib was in charge plus 35M more in ESPN money and the Budweiser deal; why not leave all the kids in iowa till 2016. why even bring them up next year. the team is gonna suck again, with travis wood as the ace (or non-ace).
    once the kids are ready, the kids need to play. there is a learning curve to become MLB confident; look at Rizzo last year. the sooner the kids play; sooner the learning curve is over.
    there is zero sense in this team, making a ton of dough, telling its fans we are gonna lose on purpose for 5 years at least, 2 more go to, and then hold back the kids when they are ready.
    does ricketts hate the fans? everything he has done is non fan friendly. hold the kids back and you may see the 1970s attendance of 1.5M appear. at least then when no one can watch the team on the sub-broadcasts stations that 2/3 of the chicago population won’t get anyway come 2015; i’ll only be pissed 1/2 the time at this joker of an owner.

    • Tony_H

      You don’t just get it and never will.