I was at a game at Wrigley a couple years ago when Kosuke Fukudome hit a pinch hit homer down the first baseline. I don’t recall the opponent or the score. I don’t even remember whether the home run factored into the result. But I remember the high fives, the screams, and the jumping around. It’ll probably be my first memory when I think back on Fukudome’s time with the Cubs. Unfortunately, the second will be his consistent post-May declines, and the third will be his helicopter swing.

  • Jim Hendry just can’t help it. In discussing Fukudome and the trade, he had to make sure and slip in a defense of himself at the end. “Obviously, he did do some good things here,” Hendry said. “But obviously there were some tough times, too, and some bad endings to the first couple of years…. In a perfect world, we thought the bat would have played at a little larger scale when we signed him, as everybody else did that pursued him.” Not everyone else was willing to give him four years and $48 million, Jim. And they were right.
  • Phil Rogers says the Cubs did well to acquire Abner Abreu in the Kosuke Fukudome deal. Yet somehow, he concludes with this: “As a hitter, he fits the mold of the free-swinging Cubs. He has had only 42 walks to go alongside 232 strikeouts in 2010-11, so the lack of plate discipline could make it a slow climb through the minors for him. But maybe the light switch has been flipped.” Yes. Maybe.
  • Speaking of Abreu and the other player the Cubs received, Carlton Smith, here’s some more information on the pair. There’s not a lot new in there. Abreu is a high upside free-swinger, and Smith is a possibly adequate middle reliever.
  • Other Cubs players have accepted that they might go in the wake of the Fukudome trade.
  • Paul Sullivan goes through the roster and analyzes the possibility of a trade for each player. If only someone had done that – more exhaustively – a month ago (oh, and I nailed Fukudome, for the record).
  • The Cubs hope Reed Johnson is back from his back problem today. I suspect that the hope is less about having Johnson available to play to win, and more about showing that Johnson is available and healthy for trade partners.
  • Rick Morrissey writes an unnecessarily obnoxious, unfunny, sarcastic piece about the trade of Fukudome signaling the end of the Cubs’ playoff hopes. Yawn.
  • BT

    Brett, he does have a point, to an extent. The Cubs were outbid for Fuk, but he decided to sign with them anyway. With the other free agent signings, you would be correct that Hendry was the only one willing to go as high as he did, but with Fuk, at the very least the White Sox offered more than 48/4.

    • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

      I could be wrong, because I’m shooting from the memory hip, but I believe Kenny Williams has strongly denied ever offering more than the Cubs for Fukudome (and that was before Fukudome was a clear bust (at that price level)).

      And, even if he is right (which I’m not conceding), why does he do this? When he dumped Bradley – a guy HE never should have signed in the first place – he defended himself while discussing the deal (“no one expected Bradley to hit poorly” – which was a totally fabricated reason to trade Bradley; the reason the Cubs HAD TO trade Bradley was the off-the-field stuff). It makes it feel like all he’s trying to do right now is save his job. And that’s not what the Cubs need their GM to be doing.

  • pfk

    For a major newspaper like the Sun-Times, a feature writer like Rick Morrissey should be an embarrassment for them. Just awful. He rarely writes a piece anymore that is insightful, funny or even relevant. Worse still, I would expect a feature writer to have eloquence so that there is at least joy in reading the use of the English language.

  • RY

    every picture of hendry looks the same, yes i know i am dumb, yes i have royally screwed this organization and the fans, but i am still trying to find that next jelly donut so i am really focused on that right now! once i get that jelly donut and a few good moves, we are right back in this thing!

  • Joe Cartwright

    So, I have a question. It’s a little off topic but what are the chances Soriano gets benched if he doesn’t get traded?

    • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

      Quade said he’s not planning on it.

      • Fishin Phil

        Now is not the time for bold changes.

  • Jeff

    “oh, and I nailed Fukudome, for the record”

    Did you at least give him a cigarette before he left town?

    • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

      I smoked both cigaretts. It’s a cultural thing.

  • http://chicagotribunelive.com Robert

    Actually brett, There has been talks about quade saying that he may bench soriano to give colvin,campanna and POSSIBLY if he gets called up even brett jackson. even if soriano isnt traded he will be gone in the offseason without a doubt. and i know the cubs are having trouble trading zambrano but heres a note, if the cubs dont trade big z i PROMISE he will be in next years starting rotation.

    • Joe Cartwright

      That’d be great. At this point, it needs to be done. I actually wanted to do it a while ago but it was still a little early when I started saying ‘bench Soriano’.