At this point, you’d have to consider a non-sweep in St. Louis to be a success. How fast and how far the Cubs – and our expectations – have fallen.

  • Don’t expect the Cubs to land high school stud Bubba Starling in Monday’s first round of the MLB Draft. Multiple experts now think he’ll be off the board at nine. If he somehow slips, though, you can expect the Cubs to leap. High school pitcher Archie Bradley is the name you hear more and more.
  • Aramis Ramirez will probably sit again today with his busted lip. The Cubs hope he’ll be back in there on Sunday.
  • With Rodrigo Lopez making an appearance in relief last night, it seems increasingly likely that he’s the odd man out when Matt Garza returns from the disabled list, as he’s expected to do in Cincinnati on Monday. My bet is that Doug Davis remains in the rotation, starting Tuesday, Lopez heads to the bullpen, and Scott Maine is sent back to AAA Iowa.
  • Mike Quade, along with his boss Jim Hendry, is starting to feel the open criticism in the mainstream media (criticism he’s faced around other parts of the ‘net for months). He’s resolute, though. “That goes with the territory,” Quade said. “Whatever heat comes, bring it on. I meant what I said a while ago. It has been frustrating and all the rest of it. But you believe in yourself, you believe in your guys, you believe they’ll come out and give you a good effort every night. And that’s all you can do. People are going to criticize. That’s fine. I’m too concerned about the guys we have, to get healthy, to get ready to play tonight, than I am about anything else. All of us have had adversity in our lives, and anybody who thought it was going to be the yellow-brick road for Mike Quade or anybody else who does this job is nuts.” As long as he’s prepared himself for the very real possibility that he’ll have to say goodbye, yellow-brick road…
  • Despite their inclusion on a nine-team list related to non-compliance with MLB debt service rules, Commissioner Bud Selig doesn’t think the Cubs are in any financial trouble. “I have zero concern,” Selig said. “Everything we’ve ever asked of them, they’ve done it and then more. … I’m unhappy that a story [like this] reflects badly on the Chicago Cubs under Tom Ricketts. There is no reason anybody should have economic concerns. … It’s so unfair to Tom Ricketts and the family. I normally don’t talk about our business, but I can’t let this go on. This is just wrong.”
  • Whether the debt issue, now raised, flags us to the fact that the Cubs might not have as much to spend this offseason as we thought is another matter. Gordon Wittenmyer flags it here, and I’ll have a more complete writeup on it tomorrow or Monday.
  • Raymond Robert Koenig

    Read Wittenmyer’s article. Sounds like Ricketts is already making excuses for why the team won’t spend in the offseason. 2012 won’t be the year either.

  • Jeff

    It’s not going to be any time in the near future. I have seen this coming since Rickett’s was “awarded” the team by Selig and Reinsdorf. There should be red flags going up every where over the track record that they have for approving new owners. L.A., and New York, two of the biggest tv markets around, have had franchises run into the ground, and Ricketts isn’t far behind in putting the finishing touches on the Cubs if he sticks with the way he’s been doing things. I think it’s time that everyone looks long and hard at Bud Selig and the effect he and Reinsdorf have had on the league. They can’t keep screwing up franchises and buying teams from their buddy’s to cover their own mistakes.

    • Michigan Goat

      Jeff, I hope your wrong, but you’ve raised a question that must be asked. Selig has approved purchases of team that were financed using “creative” avenues and “future” gains. I could never buy a million dollar house using the means that Selig has approved. I hope that the Ricketts deal is not as shady as the Dodger and Met deal but I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t scared

      • Jeff

        I am absolutely concerned with that the Ricketts deal was all smoke and mirrors, but it wouldn’t surprise me. I think Ace has done more research into this, so I’m going to wait until his post about comes out, and hopefully he’s got a more cheerful outlook on things.

        I’m almost expecting Ricketts to work out an Alfonso Soriano buyout that would cripple the team Bobby Bonilla style for the next 25 years. I hate being negative and critical about this organization, but those are the only feelings I seem to get when I watch them play or listen to anyone in charge speak. You should only be able to get away with incompetence for so long.

        • Ace

          I do have some positive thoughts, though it’s more of a back-of-the-envelope math kind of situation. I probably won’t have it until tomorrow.

  • Serio

    Debt May Impact Cubs’ Free Agency Plans…….Is that true?

    • Ace

      The inclusion of the word “may” necessarily makes it true.

      But, in all sincerity, I’m working on a write-up of the situation. I am inclined to think (hope?) it’s not quite as dire as Wittenmyer’s article makes it out to be.

  • Roughriider

    Everything is fine with the economic status. The Cubs will be fine. Quade and Hendry are the guys to take the team to the next level.
    You thought it was a joke and so you laughed, you laughed when I had said
    that loosing would make me flip my lid.. RIGHT???
    I know you laughed, I heard you laugh, you laughed you laughed and
    laughed and then you left, but now you know I’m utterly mad… And..
    They’re coming to take me away, ha-haaa,
    They’re coming to take me away, ho-ho, hee-hee, ha-haaa.
    To the happy home. With trees and flowers and chirping birds and basket
    weavers who sit and smile and twiddle their thumbs and toes and they’re
    coming to take me away, ha-haaa!!!

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