Jim Hendry made another minor move on Saturday when he traded Angel Pagan to the New York Mets for two minor league prospects, pitcher Ryan Meyers and outfielder Corey Coles. The trade opened up another roster spot as the Cubs 40-man roster currently stands at 38. Was the Pagan trade a prelude to a bigger deal? Only time will tell.
For the second week in a row, Bruce Levine mentioned the Cubs possible interest in Jon Lieber during his Saturday show with Chet Coppock on ESPN 1000. Last week Levine said the Cubs were going to add a starting pitcher via the free agent market before Spring Training started and he reiterated those words on Saturday. Levine also said that any deal with the Orioles for Brian Roberts would include Ronny Cedeno….and if Cedeno is dealt the Cubs could add Alex Cintron as a back-up middle infielder.
Here is the rest from the mill and the latest from around the league…. Bruce Levine, for the first time, mentioned the Cubs possibly interest in Alex Cintron on Saturday. Levine said the Cubs would turn to the former southsider as an option to replace Ronny Cedeno, if he is dealt to Baltimore in a trade for Brian Roberts, as a backup middle infielder off of Lou Piniella’s bench. Cintron hit .243 with a .281 OBP for the White Sox last year. Before joining the Sox in 2006, Cintron was with the Diamondbacks. His career line…. .277/.315/.401 with his best year being 2003.
Levine did not elaborate any further on the Cubs’ interest in Jon Lieber.
Levine did say the Cubs are looking to add a right handed hitting outfielder than can play all three positions and perhaps be a platoon partner for Felix Pie in centerfield. Levine did not mention any names.
A blurb in Dave van Dyck’s report in the Tribune about the Pagan trade was very interesting….”With Matt Murton still on the roster, Felix Pie and Sam Fuld possibly ready for a major league spot and Mark DeRosa able to fill in at all outfield spots, Pagan was expendable.” DeRosa in left and center?
Speaking of the “interesting”, Phil Rogers released one of his all-time strangest reports….you have to read to believe. Rogers graded the off-season so far, on the amount of players each team has lost and replaced.
The Knoxville News Sentinel introduced Buddy Bailey, the Tennessee Smokies new manager to the local fan base in East Tennessee. Bailey was the manager of the I-Cubs last season, but Pat Listach was appointed to Bailey’s previous position and Bailey in turn replaced Listach in Double-A. Bailey will likely start the season with a roster that includes Tyler Colvin, Jeff Samardzija and Donnie Veal….among others.
The Cubs interest in Joe Blanton is still unknown, but for what Billy Beane is receiving in return for his players, Blanton might be out of the Cubs price range. According to a report in the New York Daily News the Mets are still interested in the right-hander. The Daily News speculated the A’s would be looking for three prospects for Blanton.
A report on Japan Times.com talked about Fukudome wearing the number “one” for the Cubs and talks about when the Cubs did not allow players to wear that number….it was reserved for the manager.
The report also talked about Fukudome’s success in day games….a lifetime .335 hitter during the day, .299 in night games.
The Cubs will be seen quite frequently in Fukudome’s homeland in the upcoming season and in years to come.
From Around the League
The Pirates signed former Cub, Jose Macias to a minor league contract. Macias was a favorite of Dusty Baker during his tenure with the Cubs.