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Although it has been an informal policy of the Chicago Cubs not to take players to arbitration – something they haven’t done in 17 years – every day it seems more likely that the team will finally have to go through the process, this time with shortstop Ryan Theriot. And general manager Jim Hendry recently confirmed that he’s just fine with it.

The Cubs don’t expect a last-minute settlement with Ryan Theriot before his arbitration hearing and are ready to go to battle with their starting shortstop.

Theriot asked for $3.4 million and the Cubs filed at $2.6 million. Hearings are scheduled for the next two weeks in St. Petersburg, Fla., and there has been no recent negotiating between the two sides.

“I haven’t spoken to his people for a while,” general manager Jim Hendry said Tuesday at Wrigley Field. “There’s always a chance (for a settlement) until it’s final. But I can’t say I’m optimistic, either. We’re already settled with the other seven (arbitration-eligible players). So if the situation ends up going to a hearing, then that’s OK, too.

“Everbody has a right to (a hearing). It won’t affect, obviously, the way we feel about him or the way he plays.”

The hearing date has not been announced. Hendry will argue the case for the Cubs if it goes to a hearing. Chicago Breaking Sports.

That the Cubs are this dug in, and refuse so adamantly to budge off their offer to Theriot tells us all that one of two things is true. Either the Chicago Cubs truly believe Ryan Theriot is worth no more than $2.6 million this year, or the team is truly so budget-crunched that a mere few hundred thousand dollars is more than they can spare.

The hearing could take place at any time in the next week and a half.

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