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The Cubs are now 10-16 on the Spring, which, in isolation, means very little. A number of the core players – Zambrano, Dempster, Wells, Castro, Byrd, among others – have been lights out, and a number of the fringe roster types have struggled. How much does a 10-16 record, therefore, truly reflect the competency of the team? As I said, very little. Still, it’s frustrating…

  • Your losing pitcher today, and bullpen “lock,” was Jeff Samardzija. After a decent 9th inning, he crapped the bed in the 10th for a total line of an earned run (which would have been at least two if it hadn’t ended the game), three hits and two walks in 1.2 innings. At least he looks like a pirate.
  • Fellow bullpen lock John Grabow threw a scoreless frame, giving up a hit. If he somehow manages to be slightly better than league average this year, the Cubs’ pen looks all the more impressive. Of course, Sean Marshall has been terrible this Spring, so I guess we read into the Spring bullpen at our own peril.
  • Jeff Baker (at third) and Blake DeWitt (at second) each went 1-4, with a homer and a triple, respectively. Darwin Barney (at shortstop) also went 1-4. I suspect that the positional alignment is more meaningful than the at bats – it suggests the Cubs want as many looks at DeWitt at second base as possible before making a decision about his immediate future. He does have an option left.
  • Reed Johnson and Fernando Perez each came in late in a corner outfield spot and went 0-1. Most assume Johnson has the fifth outfielder spot sewn up on the strength of his .200/.265/.320 Spring. Yes – that does actually crush Perez’s Spring line.
  • Jeff C

    So what exactly makes a player have an option left? Thats always confused me…

    • Raymond Robert Koenig

      If I’m not mistaken, players have “options” left until they’ve spent parts of more than 3 seasons in the majors. If a player does have “options” left in a season he can be sent back and forth between the minors and majors as many times as the organization wants.

      • Ace

        You are correct on the second part, but the gist is, once a player is added to the 40-man roster, he has three option years – years in which the team can shuttle him back and forth between the majors and the minors as many times as they please. So a guy can still have an option year left in his 4th year in the bigs, for example, if he wasn’t sent to the minors during one of the first three years.

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