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Month: February 2011

Spring Training Bullets: February 20, 2011

The first Chicago Cubs Spring Training game is just one week away. Swoon. Oh, but not the June kind. Aramis Ramirez, who arrived in camp yesterday (a day after the official reporting date), says he’s healthy and stronger this year, having added about seven pounds of muscle. It’s a virtual contract year for Ramirez (the […]

Tom Ricketts is Open-Minded About Offering a “Mega-Deal”

Chicago Cubs Chairman/Owner Tom Ricketts addressed his team and the media Saturday, and offered more than a few interesting thoughts on the upcoming season and the future of the Cubs’ payroll. “Really, the theme for the team this year is for the last six weeks of 2010, we were one of the best teams in […]

All Players Have Reported to Camp

According to Carrie Muskat, all Chicago Cubs players are now present and accounted for at Spring Camp, which means that the two laggards – Aramis Ramirez and Starlin Castro – have arrived. The first full-squad workout is underway. Welcome to the 2011 Chicago Cubs season. Boom goes the dynamite. Er. Well, sparkle goes the sparkler.

Grumble: Aramis Ramirez and Starlin Castro Still Not in Camp

Although yesterday was the official Spring Training report date for positional players, all but a handful of Chicago Cubs were already in camp long before Friday. Included in that handful were annual laggards Alfonso Soriano and Aramis Ramirez, and second year shortstop Starlin Castro. Soriano missed Friday’s workout, but arrived last evening. Unfortunately Ramirez and […]

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Positional Players Report, And Other Spring Training Bullets

This is starting to feel like a regular feature… Pitchers and catchers reported to Spring Training earlier this week, and today is the reporting date for everyone else – though most Cubs are already in camp. Indeed, the only players yet to report are Kosuke Fukudome, Aramis Ramirez, Alfonso Soriano, Starlin Castro and Max Ramirez. […]

Allow Your Albert Pujols Fantasies to Run Wild for a Day or Two

Now that Albert Pujols will officially (more like theoretically) become a free agent at season’s end, you can go ahead and do it. You know you want to. Indulge yourself. You’re allowed to picture him in Cubbie Blue for just a little while. Three competing executives say they expect the rival Cubs to make a big […]

Marlon Byrd is Beefy, But It’s All Supplements and Exercise

Chicago Cubs center fielder Marlon Byrd is a thick, hulking dude. And if he had the power numbers of an Albert Pujols or Alex Rodriguez, or say, Jose Bautista, people would probably speculate about the source of Byrd’s prodigious biceps. As it is, no one is particularly concerned with PEDs when it comes to Marlon […]

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Keith Moreland to Join Pat Hughes in the WGN Radio Booth

Today, WGN Radio and the Chicago Cubs announced that former Cub Keith Moreland will take Ron Santo’s spot as Pat Hughes’ partner broadcasting Cubs games on WGN Radio. The announcement comes after a long search process, and Moreland was selected over the other presumptive finalist, Dave Otto. Moreland has served as the back-up color man […]

Sources: Albert Pujols Deadline Expected to Pass with No Deal

Albert Pujols’ totally arbitrary extension deadline – a hypothetical extension on a deal not set to expire for another 8 months – is one hour away. Feel those goosebumps? Well, massage them down, because word is already leaking from multiple sources that the Cardinals and Pujols will NOT reach an extension by noon. Pujols will […]

More Spring Training Bullets

I know, I know – you’re being inundated with bullet posts. If you hate them, let me know. But for now, they seem to be the most efficient and thoughtful way of keeping you updated on the points of interest coming out of Mesa. Carlos Silva is sticking to his there-is-only-one-rotation-spot-open-because-I’m-the-fourth-starter theory. “For them, it’s open and for […]

Randy Wells Is Not the Partier You Might Think Him to Be

Randy Wells, who should be guaranteed a rotation spot but is not, says he was treated unfairly by the media last year, who painted him as a bit of a partier. Wells, you may recall, was far less effective during day games (4.95 ERA) than night games last year, and folks hinted that the reason could […]

The Albert Pujols Deadline is Today at Noon – And Related Notes

Your daily Albert Pujols digest: Pujols’ self-imposed deadline first was yesterday before being extended by agreement with the Cardinals (which remains profoundly bizarre – what, if Pujols wants to discuss a new deal on Friday, the Cardinals are going to say “sorry, we agreed to a Wednesday deadline”?), and now runs until noon EST today. […]

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Cubs Trade Prospect Tony Thomas to Red Sox for Reliever Robert Coello

Today the Chicago Cubs made a minor move, dealing second base prospect Tony Thomas to the Boston Red Sox for relief prospect Robert Coello, who was recently designated for assignment. Coello will be added to the Cubs’ 40-man roster, and will compete for a spot in the bullpen this year. The move is a bit […]

Leading Off: Kosuke Fukudome?

In recent years, Chicago Cubs fans have come to dwell on “the lineup” much more than most. Geovany Soto is hitting WHERE? Aramis Ramirez is still batting WHERE?! It is entirely possible that this kind of hate-hate relationship begins at the top. The subject of the Cubs’ leadoff hitter has been a particularly sore one for […]

Spring Training Tidbits Aplenty – And an Albert Pujols Note

Spring Training is but a day old – pitchers and catchers reported yesterday; the positional reporting date is February 18, though many are already in camp – but there are already a number of tidbits worth sharing (in bullet form – which is code for: these are interesting/important enough to share, but not interesting/important enough […]

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Cubs and Carlos Marmol Agree to Three Year Extension

As expected, the Chicago Cubs and Carlos Marmol today agreed to a three-year extension, which buys out his final two years of arbitration and first year of free agency. We’re still waiting on the official announcement, but the deal is expected to be in the $20 to 23 million range, and Bruce Levine hears the […]

Mike Quade is Ready for Scrutiny, Speaking in Third Person

When Jim Hendry announced that interim manager Mike Quade, a career minor league manager and big league bench coach, would be taking over as the next manager of the Chicago Cubs, the reaction was best described as measured optimism. The players seemed to be pleased with the selection, but fans, who’d just seen Quade lead […]

Report: Albert Pujols to Announce Tuesday that Contract Discussions Are Over

Albert Pujols’ pre-free agency version of The Decision is set to conclude on Tuesday, according to Bob Nightengale. Pujols has rejected a contract extension from the Cardinals, a source close to Pujols says, and will announce Tuesday (a day before his February 16th deadline) that contract discussions are over until after the season. Pujols is roundly […]

Pitchers and Catchers: REPORT

For whatever reason, hearing that pitchers and catchers are reporting to Spring Training, in addition to getting me irrationally excited, also makes me think of “Wonder Twin powers: activate!” Pitchers and catchers: report! See? Yeah, I’m cool. Nevertheless, today is indeed the day that pitchers and catchers are due to report to Chicago Cubs Spring […]

Did the Rangers and Cubs Discuss a Michael Young Trade?

This week, the Texas Rangers went from we-aren’t-trading-Michael-Young to we-have-to-trade-Michael-Young back to we-aren’t-trading-Michael-Young, all in the span of a few days. It is safe to assume that the book-ends of that back-and-forth are mere posturing, and, as an expensive, disgruntled, superfluous player, Young’s days in Arlington are numbered. The Chicago Cubs have never been a […]

Carlos Marmol Has Taken His Pre-Extension Physical

Very little content to offer right now, but because he’s an important player – and the last remaining arbitration-eligible Cub – it’s still worth sharing: today, Carlos Marmol took his pre-extension physical in Mesa, according to Carrie Muskat. Recall, the Cubs are intent on signing Marmol, who’s eligible for arbitration for the second time (hearing […]

The White Sox Are the Only Relevant Baseball Team in Chicago

Few articles require no introduction, and indeed – where ridiculous enough – no fisking. To wit: Beginning next week and playing out all summer long, the only relevant baseball team in New Gotham is at 35th and Shields. Yes, for the first time in decades, this town belongs to the White Sox. Stop right here […]