It was a very busy first day of baseball’s off-season. There were 139 players that were declared free agents throughout the league. That list will change as options are declined and players officially retire. And the rumors picked up considerably, but more on that later Tuesday.
The Cubs’ 40-man roster was reduced to 29 players. RHP Trevor Cahill, RHP Tommy Hunter, RHP Jason Motte, RHP Fernando Rodney, OF Dexter Fowler, OF Chris Denorfia, OF Austin Jackson, INF Jonathan Herrera and OF Quintin Berry became free agents. C Taylor Teagarden was outrighted to Iowa and RHP Dan Haren retired.
Bovada released very early odds for the 2016 World Series and the Cubs opened as an 11/1 favorite to win the Fall Classic next year.
The Mets, Nationals, Royals, Dodgers, Cardinals and Blue Jays are 12/1 followed by the Pirates, Astros and Rangers at 14/1. The Giants should be the team Vegas picked to win the Series, it’s an even year and everyone knows San Francisco is the last team standing in even years. The Giants opened at 20/1 odds.
The odds will change as the off-season progresses and teams make moves to shape their rosters this winter.
A month after U.S. District Judge Virginia Kendall dismissed all nine counts within the suit filed in January by Skybox on Sheffield and Lakeview Baseball Club, the two Wrigleyville Rooftops would like the decision to be reconsidered.
According to a report from the Tribune, Skybox on Sheffield and Lakeview Baseball Club “filed court papers asking U.S. District Court Judge Virginia Kendall to reconsider her decision to dismiss their lawsuit against the team and asked permission to file an amended complaint.”
Both rooftop businesses are owned by Edward McCarthy and the request was made “to allow them to amend claims related to antitrust violations by the team in its pursuit of acquiring rooftop businesses.” McCarthy filed for new counsel and hopes to argue that the ruling Kendall made in September “would not apply because the six rooftop businesses acquired by the Ricketts family this year aren’t directly owned by the Cubs.”
The report explained “they want to clarify the nature of the antitrust theory and the relevant market, as well as to include in the record the correct corporate identity of the party who has been seeking to monopolize that market.”
The Ricketts family purchased six rooftop properties this year “to gain further control of the neighborhood streets surrounding” Wrigley Field.
According to the report, a “Ricketts controlled entity has also filed a lawsuit against a rooftop business in which it is an investor in order to gain full ownership.” And McCarthy would like to “add as a defendant” to the filing “Northside Entertainment Holdings, an entity in which the Ricketts family are indirect investors and which indirectly owns the rooftops acquired by the family.”
Last week’s filings “are not seeking to address breach of contract” between the Cubs and the rooftop businesses which was dismissed in September.
Wrigley Field Marquee
The Cubs removed the Wrigley Field marquee Monday as part of Phase Two of the 1060 Project. The historic and landmarked marquee was taken down in pieces and will be reinstalled, unaltered, before Opening Day 2016.
The marquee will receive maintenance and stored off site.
The Nationals named Dusty Baker the team’s manager early Tuesday. Baker becomes the sixth field manager in Nationals history according to the release from the team. Baker has agreed to a multi-year contract with GM Mike Rizzo.
Negotiations reportedly broke down between the Nationals and Bud Black beyond the point of repair. Reports indicated Monday night that Black was offended with the offer he received and the Nationals moved on to Dusty Baker.
- 6 – Deadline for clubs to make qualifying offers to eligible former players that became free agents (4:00pm CST)
- 7 – First day free agents may sign contracts with a team other than their former club – First Day of Free Agency begins 11:01pm CST Friday, Nov. 6
- 9 – Players Choice Awards (MLB Network, 7:00pm CST)
- 9-12 – General Managers Meetings (Boca Raton, FL)
- 10 – BBWAA Awards Finalists Announced (MLB Network, 5:00pm CST)
- 10 – Rawlings Gold Glove Award winners announced (ESPN, 6:00pm CST)
- 11 – Wilson Defensive Player of the Year Awards (MLB Network, 5:00pm CST)
- 12 – Louisville Silver Slugger Awards (MLB Network, 5:00pm CST)
- 13 – Deadline for free agents to accept qualifying offer from former team (4:00pm CST)
- 16 – BBWAA – National League and American League Rookie of the Year awards (MLB Network, 5:00pm CST)
- 17 – BBWAA – National League and American League Manager of the Year awards (MLB Network, 5:00pm CST)
- 18 – BBWAA – National League and American League Cy Young awards (MLB Network, 6:00pm CST)
- 19 – BBWAA – National League and American League Most Valuable Player awards (MLB Network, 6:00pm CST)
- 20 – Reserve Lists Filed for Major and all Minor League levels (40-man roster)
- 20 – Esurance MLB Awards (MLB Network, 7:00pm CST)
- 2 – Non-Tender Deadline (Last Day for Clubs to Offer 2016 Contracts to Unsigned Players)
- 7-10 – Winter Meetings
- 10 – Rule 5 Draft
- 12 – Salary Arbitration Filing
- 15 – Salary Arbitration Figures Exchanged
- 15-17 – Cubs Convention
- 1-21 – Salary Arbitration Hearings
- 18 – Voluntary Reporting Date for Pitchers and Catchers
- 23 – Voluntary Reporting Date for Position Players
- 3 – Opening Day vs. Angels at Angel Stadium (Tentative)
- 11 – Cubs Home Opener vs. Reds at Wrigley Field
News and Notes
• According to a report from Sports Hochi, LHP Tsuyoshi Wada has decided to continue his career back in Japan. The report indicated Wada has an agreement in place for a multi-year contract that should be finalized soon.
• Major League Baseball released the list of 139 players that became free agents.
• The Brewers made it official and announced Derek Johnson is the team’s new pitching coach.
• The Phillies added one-time Cubs’ second baseman Mickey Morandini to the big league coaching staff. Morandini will be Pete Mackanin’s first base and baserunning coach. Larry Bowa stayed with the Phillies as Mackanin’s bench coach.
• The Blue Jays promoted Tony LaCava to interim general manager in the wake of Alex Anthopoulos turning down a contract extension last week and walking away. LaCava had been the team’s AGM since 2007.
• Rosters for the Arizona Fall League Fall Stars Game were released Monday. Willson Contreras and Corey Black were named to the East squad. The AFL Fall Stars rosters are packed with the game’s best prospects. And there is a possibility another one of the Cubs’ top prospects could participate in the game. 3B Jeimer Candelario deserves to play in the game and can be voted on to the roster by clicking here.
• The Fall Stars Game takes place Saturday, Nov. 7 and will be televised on the MLB Network (7:08pm CST) and MLB.com. Mike Ferrin will have the call on MLB Network Radio.
• According to a report from Baseball America, Willson Contreras wants to follow the path of other Venezuelans to the majors and he’s catching on with detailed approach.
• Ryan Dempster closed the Dempster Family Foundation.
• ESPN posted a look back to what the world was like in sports and pop culture in 1985, the first time the Royals were World Series Champs.
• And speaking of the Royals, the Giants front office sent pizzas to the Royals front office Monday.
This Day In Cubstory
2014 – Cubs introduced Joe Maddon as the 54th manager in franchise history
2012 – Cubs granted free agency to Jim Adduci, Adrian Cardenas, Brian Esposito, Jeff Frazier, Diory Hernandez, Rodrigo Lopez, Seth McClung, Blake Parker, Horacio Ramirez, Ryan Rowland-Smith, Miguel Socolovich, Matt Tolbert, Jairo Asencio and Justin Berg
2008 – Cubs signed amateur free agent Arismendy Alcantara
2008 – Cubs acquired Ryan Bucher from the Nationals for Matt Avery
2008 – Cubs granted free agency to Andres Blanco, Hector Carrasco, Robinson Chirinos, Jason Dubois, Luis Figueroa, Josh Kroeger, Billy Petrick, Carmen Pignatiello, Bobby Scales, Jason Stanford, Andres Torres and Mike Burns
1998 – Cubs sent Scott Downs to the Twins as the PTBNL to complete the Mike Morgan trade
1995 – Cubs granted free agency to Mark Grace, Randy Myers and Howard Johnson
1984 – Jonathan Herrera, born
1982 – Cubs traded Mike King to the Royals for Jim Wright
1973 – Cubs traded Bob Locker to Oakland for Horacio Pina
1945 – Ken Holtzman, born