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Mark DeRosa CubsMany years ago – well, two, I guess – when I was but a humble poster on Chicago Cubs message boards, I was absolutely incensed at one of Jim Hendry’s signings.

The Cubs were looking for a second baseman to replace Todd Walker/Tony Womack/Neifi Perez/Horror. Walker had played relatively well in his time with the Cubs, before being traded to the Padres in August of 2006 for pitching prospect Jose Ceda (a young fireballer who was traded a few weeks ago for Kevin Gregg).

Second base was a pile of crap for the rest of the year, and so expectations were high in the offseason for a solid starter. There were a few solid options that year, including Ray Durham, Julio Lugo or Akinori Iwamura.

But Hendry jumped the market, and snapped up a career utility player/backup second baseman, coming off an inexplicable career year at the age of 31. He gave that guy a multi-year deal, too. Cubs fans were not happy.

Sound familiar?

More after the jump.

Mark DeRosa hadn’t so much as solidified himself as a quality, everyday major leaguer when Jim Hendry gave him a three-year, $13 million contract to become the Cubs’ second baseman. Before his 2006 season in the Arlington smallpark, DeRosa’s career highs in the major rate categories mostly came from his 2002 campaign with the Braves where he put up a respectable .297/.339/.429 line. But he did it in just 212 at bats. In fact, before 2006, DeRosa never topped 350 at bats in a season, and only topped 300 once.

But in 2006, DeRosa became more of a full-timer, and broke out with 55 extra base hits, 78 runs and 74 RBI to go along with a career best .296/.357/.456 line. Some attributed the breakout to his new, full-time role. Others said it was a new approach at the plate that he had developed. But cynical Cubs fans, such as myself, thought: self, guys don’t just “figure it out” at 31. It must have been the ballpark at Arlington. It must have been a fluke. It must have been… something.

We were wrong. DeRosa easily matched his 2006 performance in 2007, and then exceeded it in 2008. Cubs fans rejoiced. Jim Hendry is a genius.

But then Jim did something we didn’t expect – at least not without Jake Peavy coming back our way. He traded Mark DeRosa. Jim Hendry is an idiot!

Or so the cries from the message boards went.

And then, to add insult to injury, Jim did the unthinkable – he signed Aaron Miles, a former Cardinal no less, to replace Mark DeRosa. Now, to be clear: I don’t actually believe Jim signed Miles to replace DeRosa – or at least, I don’t believe it’s that simple. I believe Miles was signed to replace the utility aspect of Mark DeRosa, and a Mike Fontenot/Aaron Miles platoon will replace the second base starter aspect of Mark DeRosa.

But two years and $5 million for a guy whose career numbers look terrifyingly Neifi-tastic? What was Jim Hendry thinking? Before last year, Miles’ best year was back in 2004: .293/.329/.368. And he did it IN COLORADO!

Guys like me returned to the message boards to decry another blunder by the Cubs’ front office. Suckered in by a .317/.355/.398 career year that Miles had put up in 2008 at the age of 31, for crying out loud. That’s what had happened.

For a day or two, the irony had been lost on me.

Maybe there’s a lesson here. Perhaps the lesson of Mark DeRosa is patience. Temperance. Maybe the lesson is that guys can “figure it out” at age 31. Nobody likes to see Mark DeRosa go, and nobody thinks that Aaron Miles can truly “replace” him. Even at his best, Miles does not approach the hitter DeRosa has been the last few years. Then again he costs less than half of DeRosa, of course.

But maybe the Chicago Cubs got themselves a guy who really can hit .300 and get on base at a .350 clip. Maybe he really can be a top notch day-t0-day replacement player at a whole host of positions. Maybe.

Like most, the signing really angered me when I first heard about it. But I’m willing to believe that it’s possible that Miles can duplicate his 2008 performance. If you’d asked me two years ago in a similar situation, there’s no way I could have ever believed it.

And that’s when the man that Aaron Miles is replacing proved me wrong.

  • savant

    Nice entry Ace. I think the biggest factor that is getting lost in all of this is Mike Fontenot. More than clearing salary, it seems to me that Lou wants Fontenot in the lineup on a more consistent basis.

  • Jeff

    The Russian spammers have attacked the Aaron Miles thread again!!!! Is there nothing sacred left????

    • Ace

      They aren’t spammers – Russians love gritty, talentless middle infielders. I can barely post about Theriot without the server exploding.

  • http://twitter.com/thomaswconroy TWC

    Of all the posts, it’s the Aaron Miles one that gets spam-hammered. Love it. Don’t get it, but love it anyway.

    • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

      The thing I don’t love? It was my first long-ish form piece, so it could be a lot better. And, I ended up being dead-ass wrong. Glad it keeps getting bumped…

  • Fishin Phil

    Finally went back and read the article. I feel your pain Brett.

  • http://calebshreves.blogspot.com Caleb

    Glam Twinks?

    I was a big DeRosa supporter. I think he would have continued to do well for the Cubs. And really, he didn’t have that bad of a year in 2009. Kind of like Aaron Miles, but not.

    If you would have started the anti-Hendryness in full force back when Derosa was traded, I might have jumped on board.

    PS Glam twinks bareback

    • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

      Ha. Now you look crazy because I finally deleted all the spam comments.

  • BT

    Aaron Miles was batting THIRD for the Dodgers last weekend. True story.

    • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

      Hell is other teams’ players.

  • ColumbianDrunk

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    • Toosh

      You need to keep stuff like this off this ‘site.

      • http://www.michigangoat.blogspot.com MichiganGoat

        Told ya Cardinal fans are communist

  • T C

    I’m so glad the spammers keep finding their way here. I hope it never stops

  • Brisyseergo

    It’s often been entertaining to check out Sacha Baron Cohen vanish into an overly eccentric character and also the encompassing “real” planet try to adapt to his presence. Within the Dictator, the strategy differs greatly from the two Borat and Bruno in that Aladeen is displayed being a hokey mockery – and an equally farcical host of caricatures encircles him. The whole affair is presented as being a parody instead of actuality, and even worse nonetheless Aladeen feels completely fictitious. Now not does a documentarian follow around an uncontrollable social misfit who could possibly just be true – now a filmmaker blandly captures a comedian portraying a movie character.

    At any time due to the fact inheriting the dictatorship on the North African nation of Wadiya, egomaniacal self-proclaimed Admiral Normal Aladeen (Sacha Baron Cohen) has ruled with the iron fist in addition to a full disregard to the requires of his people today. When his corrupted Uncle Tamir (Ben Kingsley) makes an attempt to own him executed so as to dump the rights to Wadiya’s oil supply, Aladeen escapes only to search out himself exiled and within the streets of new York Metropolis. Heading to operate for Zoey (Anna Faris), the owner of an pure grocery sector, the disgraced dictator hatches a strategy along with his previous nuclear physicist Nadal (Jason Mantzoukas) to regain his throne (and that is about to get democratically constitutionalized). But in the event the supreme ruler unexpectedly falls in love, the fate of Wadiya and its notorious commander hangs within the balance.

    The Dictator employs a screenplay so flummoxing it really is challenging to place derision into words. Lower than 3 mildly smart (still normally offensive) political railleries sneak their way right into a script (a single currently being the gatherings of Munich became a first-person-shooter Wii activity) so filled with verbal violation it rarely offers audiences an opportunity to be shocked for the very poor taste. None of it is the smarter satire, spoofing of related current activities, or commentary on political and cultural arenas that regular Cohen’s other works, or maybe the pure outrageousness of foreign miscommunications and rampant nudity. That is no Borat. In its place, we are given both the particularly detestable jokes on terrorism, 9/11, bin Laden, abduction, rape, and torture, or visible yucks from childbirth, masturbating, and also other bodily excretions. It can be seldom as a lot of an exhibition since it is plainly preposterous.

    Most likely the greatest fault along with the presentation would be the final decision to eradicate the pseudo-documentary model of Cohen’s prior efforts in favor of a classic narrative. The Dictator provides a story. And it really is a weak, silly, nonsensical, and pointless one. If your filmmakers experienced continued together with the “reality TV” method through which cameramen adhere to around Aladeen as he misconducts himself in all sorts of awkward, experienced eventualities (like the to begin with ten minutes do to introduce the role), this complete ordeal might have experienced some real laughs. Casting well-known actors and like a appreciate concept do minor more than make Aladeen’s tale entirely unbelievable and unconvincing. It truly is abrasive and unmemorable – a sad transform through the caustic ridicule he so brilliantly devised with Borat (and also Bruno).

    Post Resource: movie

  • cEdyromia

    International spam to the max.

    • DarthHater

      Danish spam.

  • GymnLiaimiVam

    В целом, прежний март самым холодным в России с начала века, а в Москве – самым холодным с 1969 г., рекорды минимальной температуры устанавливались через Воркуты перед Ставрополя. Для севере морозы доходили предварительно -45°С, в Центральной России – предварительно -25°С и ниже, сообщили в Гидрометцентре.

    По данным метеорологов, март в центре Европейской России оказался холоднее февраля, это произошло впервые с 1957 года. Среднемесячные температуры в Тверской, Ярославской, Ивановской, Костромской, Московской областях были для четыре – шесть градусов ниже климатической нормы. Якобы отметили специалисты, ради Центральной России морозный март не редкость. Они напомнили, что в 2005 г. было опять холоднее.

    На севере европейской территории страны март стал самым холодным следовать последние 50 лет. Так, в в Архангельской области и Республике Коми средняя температура была на восемь – десять ниже нормы. Противоположная ситуация складывалась для юге страны. Что в Краснодарском и Ставропольском краях температура спорадически понижалась перед -5 … -8°С, в целом март был для три градуса теплее обычного. Это повторяется уже в пятый раз ради последние 13 лет.

    Холоднее, чем обычно, было для Урале и в большей части Сибири. Только для юге Сибири и на севере Дальнего Востока было аномально тепло. “Усердный воздух из Средней Азии привел к экстремально высоким температурам воздуха на юге Сибири в Омской, Новосибирской, Кемеровской областях и Алтайском крае. Здесь, в среднем, следовать луна атмосфера прогрелся на два – пять градусов выше нормы. Тепло было и для северо-востоке России, преимущественно в первую декаду месяца, когда для Чукотке температура превышала норму на восемь – десять градусов”, – отметили специалисты.

    Прошедший март в столице стал самым холодным с 1969 г., и впервые затем 1957 г. он оказался холоднее февраля. В Москве средняя температура воздуха за месяц составляла -6,6°С.

    Кроме того, месячные нормы осадков в марте были превышены в два раза и более в Центральном, Приволжском, Уральском, для большей части Сибирского и Дальневосточного, а также в некоторых краях и республиках Южного и Северо-Кавказского федеральных округов. В Москве за луна выпало 77 мм осадков, что составляет 226% от нормы – это был третий очень “потный” март в истории столицы впоследствии 1937-го и 1966 года.

    Погодные аномалии не один отсрочили прибытие весны, только и отразились для покупательской активности людей. Британские аналитики установили, сколько барыш продаж в передовой весенний луна составил только 1,9% сообразно сравнению с прошлогодними показателями, сообщает Heavens News.

    Примечательно, сколько наибольшим спросом пользовались продукты быстрого приготовления и спиртные напитки. А численность тех, кто покупает одежду и обувь, извращенно, сократилось. Сообразно словам главы торговой группы KPMG Дэвида Маккоргуэла, больше всего от холодной погоды пострадал крупнейший ритейлер Великобритании Marks & Spencer.

    • hansman1982

      Russian spam in Russian?!

      ZOMG THE GREATEST THING EVER!

      • hansman1982

        Google Translate, it’s a damn weather report.

        In general, the previous coldest March in Russia since the beginning of the century, and in Moscow – the coldest since 1969, the minimum temperature records were set in Vorkuta to Stavropol. To the north frost reached pre -45 ° C, in Central Russia – Pre -25 ° C and below, reported in the weather center.

        According to meteorologists, March at the center of European Russia was cold in February, it was the first time since 1957. The average monthly temperature in Tver, Yaroslavl, Ivanovo, Kostroma, Moscow region were for four – six degrees below normal. Ostensibly the specialists, for central Russia frosty March is not uncommon. They recalled that in 2005, it was colder again.

        In the north of the European part of the country in March was the coldest follow the last 50 years. Thus, in the Arkhangelsk region and Komi average temperature was eight – ten below normal. The opposite situation was to the south. What in the Krasnodar and Stavropol regions sporadically temperature decreased to -5 … -8 ° C, in general, for March was three degrees warmer than usual. This is repeated for the fifth time for the last 13 years.

        Colder than usual, it was for the Urals and in most of Siberia. Only the south of Siberia and the Far East in the north was abnormally warm. “Hard working air from Central Asia has led to extremely high air temperatures in the south of Siberia, Omsk, Novosibirsk, Kemerovo and Altai regions. Here, on average, follow the moon atmosphere warmed by two – five degrees above normal. It was warm and the north-eastern Russia, primarily in the first ten days of the month, when the temperature is above normal Chukotka for eight – ten degrees, “- the experts.

        Last March in the capital was the coldest since 1969, and for the first time and then in 1957 he was colder February. In Moscow, the average temperature for the month was -6,6 ° C.

        In addition, monthly rainfall in March was exceeded in two or more times in the Central, Volga, Urals, for the greater part of the Siberian and Far East, as well as in some regions and republics of the South and the North Caucasus Federal District. In Moscow moon dropped 77 mm of precipitation, which is 226% of normal – it was the third very “sweaty” in March in the history of the capital after 1937 and 1966.

        Weather anomalies than one delayed arrival of spring, and that’s reflected in buying activity for people. British analysts have determined how much profit sales in the advanced spring moon was only 1.9% according to compared to last year, according to Heavens News.

        Notably, the greatest demand much fast food and alcoholic drinks. A number of those who buy clothes and shoes, perversely, declined. According to the head of the trade group KPMG David Makkorguela, most from the cold weather hit the UK’s largest retailer Marks & Spencer.”

        Although there is a line of the century buried in there:

        “…it was the third very “sweaty” in March in the history of the capital after 1937 and 1966.”

      • http://www.shadowsofwrigley.com TC

        This is the thread that keeps on giving

  • PFK

    You are new here? That means you haven’t gone through initiation yet. We will think of something to initiate you.

  • Ace

    Sorry, I deleted the spammer comment – now everyone thinks you’re crazy.

  • Jeff

    There is no such thing as crazy when it comes to the Aaron Miles thread.

  • jeff

    Someone needs to translate this, I’m dying to know what this guy thinks of the whole Aaron Miles/Mark DeRosa dynamic that the Cubs have going on this year. Google translator is no help. I’m sure it’s an analysis on the value of WAR and OPS+ in Russian fantasy baseball leagues, and who gets to pick Aaron Miles first overall.

  • Ace

    Could be bitching about Zambrano giving up an 0-2 slap single to Miles the other day…

  • Ron

    My Russian is a bit rusty, didn’t know they liked baseball.

  • Fishin Phil

    Well, sure that’s great for right now… but what about next year???

  • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

    Sorry, FP. Now no one gets your joke, because I had to “spam” that comment away.

  • Fishin Phil

    Nyet!

  • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

    Once again, your joke will fall on deaf ears. My bust, FP.

  • Fishin Phil

    That’s ok, I was just pointing him out. Well that, and I do enjoy talking to myself. ;)

  • Internet Random

    Totally.

  • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

    You look silly now.

  • Fishin Phil

    Easy for you to say.

  • DocPeterWimsey

    I already have all the cameras I need, thanks.

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