Starlin Castro has reached base in 30 consecutive games. The last Cubs shortstop to do that? Ernie Banks.

  • Ryan Dempster says he still hasn’t given much thought to picking up his $14 million option. “I never even thought about that,” Dempster said Saturday about the possibility that Sunday is his final home game at Wrigley Field. “I’m just trying to go out there and win a game tomorrow and let all those things handle themselves …. As a player, you just want to see where everything’s going and what direction they want to go and things like that more than anything. You know how much I love playing here. Hopefully, it’s not just about staying here for next year but staying past next year. I’ll worry about what’s on the field first.”
  • Mike Quade being Mike Quade: “Carlos [Pena] has put together a two-week period as good as he has all year. And [he’s] driving toward 30 home runs. He’s been a huge part of this ballclub, both on the field and off the field. We need him in the lineup, and obviously [Aramis Ramirez] as well. Those guys, they’ve anchored this club, and where we would be without them I have no idea.”
  • ESPNChicago’s Sahadev Sharma – quickly becoming one of my local favorites – has a nice writeup on the Chicago Cubs’ relief corps. When asked about Cubs prospects, I frequently say that the Cubs are loaded with quality relief prospects (which says a lot about every other position), and Sharma’s article notes many of the top names. If the Cubs sign a free agent reliever in the offseason, I will immediately hate the new GM. Sharm says something I – and many others – have been saying for years: “Unless acquiring a dominant closer, it’s unwise to give high-paying long-term deals to a reliever; they rarely seem to work out.”
  • Tony LaRussa laughed at the idea that he could manage the Cubs next year.
  • Albert Pujols’ and Prince Fielder’s agents are already hard at work battling each other to get top dollar for their client.
  • Ryne Sandberg had another good minor league managerial season. If he’s going to replace Charlie Manuel in Philadelphia, though, he’ll have to wait another two seasons, because Charlie apparently isn’t keen on retiring just yet. That said, Sandberg is expected to be invited to join the Phillies’ Major League coaching staff next year. He has already joined the staff for the rest of this season.
  • There are a number of articles surfacing about why Jeff Samardzija makes sense for the 2012 rotation, but Sean Marshall doesn’t. We’ve been having that conversation on the Message Board for days. Just sayin’.
  • BFM

    I hope Dempster stays. I don’t think he is the answer to digging the Cubs out of this horrible condition, but he is a good team leader and great with the younger guys in the lockerroom. There is a lot to be said about that. Even though this is his worst season as a Cub, doesn’t mean he won’t bounce back. And the Cubs have enough on their plate trying to find at least 2 more starters, possibly a reliever or two, keeping Pena and Ramirez (or not), trading Soriano or Byrd (preferably Soriano) and fine tuning some of the younger players……not to mention hiring a new GM and manager.

    Having Dempster return would help the Cubs more than hurt.

  • LouCub

    I’ve got nothing against Dempster, he’s a great 4th or 5th starter to be sure and has done a lot for the Cubs and the community..However he shouldn’t be getting paid like a #1 or #2 no freaking way, that 14 million could be better spent somewhere else.

    • Jeff

      14 million is chump change for a #1 or #2 starter on a major market playoff contender.   I don’t really see much else available for that 14 million.  I have a hard time seeing any combination of free agents to sign for 14 million that’s going to replace Dempster’s spot and production in the rotation.

      I don’t see this as him wanting to leave, it sounds more like a call for a multi-year extension.  Besides, Dempster is a type A free agent if I’m not mistaken, I’d take the draft picks if I could get them.

      • Brett

        Chump change for a 1 or 2, I agree.

        But what about for a 3 or 4?

        • Jeff

          For a 3, 14 million wouldn’t be out of the question.  I don’t think he’s looking to get paid anyway.  I fully believe he wants a multi-year extension with the Cubs.  If he hits the open market, it’s possible he could get 14 million, but I doubt he would.  If Dempster was looking for the highest paying situation, exercising the option is his best choice.  If he’s looking for a 2 or 3 year contract for around 10 million a year from someone, I think he’d get it.  The starting pitching market is thin, and could be extremely thin depending on who re-signs after the year.

  • Mike Foster

    I see Holliday is on the DL for an inflamed tendon of his middle finger. Did he get it from flashing it to Quade? Will Holliday miss his beaning next week? Inquiring minds and all…

    • Dan0mite

      Holliday will never get beaned for that slide. If it hasn’t happened yet, then it never will.

      • cubs4life

        holiday should have been beaned on the very next at bat.. that just goes to show how much of a “team” we have this year.. no bad deed should go unpunished…

        • Toosh


  • Toosh

    Teams don’t have to place players on the Disabled List in September because of the increased roster size. Injured players are just out.

  • Deez

    IMO, Samardzija and Marshall deserve a look as Starters. 1st attempt should always be to look w/in the organization for a solution. Cashner probably will be back in the pen. I can not believe the opportunities they gave Russell, Lopez, & Davis. I’d rather pull guys for AAA than come w/ those guys!
    Also, if we can get the young Arms Colorado got Jimenez, You gotta trade Garza!

  • ry

    Dumptruck isnt worth more than 11 mil per, let him walk. we won’t be very good in ’12 anyway

  • curtis damme

    on mike quade who keeps playing the veterans and saying where would be without them yeah mike where would we be 30 games under instead of 18 oh much better i originally thought it was a decent idea 2 give quade a chance but he makes no sense in his logic these veterans who may r may not be back next year shouldnt be playing for stats come on who do u work for quade the cubs or those players and their agents , are u not supposed2 be looking out for the cubs and their future well the cubs future is not ramirez and pena i do love pena and how hard he tries and does things the right way but hes most likely not going 2 be here gve lahair a full shot at 1st i really wish ricketts would have taken control of this and got rid of quade with hendry

  • Steve

    Trade Garza? *chuckle* So…the Cubs get one year out of a guy they traded, what, FIVE guys for? Then…RESTART the process of HOPING they get decent development out of the YOUNG PROSPECTS they acquire from, yet another trade, down the road…a couple more years later??? Good idea. SO THEN…there’s YET ANOTHER ROTATION SPOT IN QUESTION, going into an off season that already ponders next season’s 1st baseman, 2-3 other rotation spots, possibly the loss of your 3rd baseman, maybe a search for two starting outfielders, a new GM, and…a new manager??? Oh yeah, do it. That makes unbelieveable sense.

    • Deez

      So? You think w/ Garza, Owing Zambrano & Soriano $36M, we going to be better than we were this year?
      There is no immediate fix for ’12. Even if we resign Dempster (2yr or3yr extension), Ramirez (2yr or3yr extension), & Pena (1yr extension), do you really think we’ll be better for the immediate or long term future of the franchise?
      At some point, you have to hit the RESET button & commit to development. If you think signing Wilson & Pujols (or Fielder) to albatross type contracts & watching them decline before we get better, do that then…
      See where we are financially & competitively in 3 years!
      Cubs ain’t the Yankees or the Red Sox!

  • die hard

    over hyped #3 or 4 who wouldn’t make staff of any team to be in playoffs this year…. Any salary they can dump would be money saved for use elsewhere

  • Steve

    Garza is a steal at his current salary. He is one of the VERY FEW current players the Cubs are actually getting VALUE for their money spent. Dump high contracts? Yes. Dump am affordable, productive, young pitcher…who is under team control, long before he becomes pricey, and thus, low value? That is just stupid. Keep guys who are EARNING their paychecks. Dump under-productive, aging, former stars. Zambrano, Soriano…and perhaps, ARam. Let go un underachievers. KEEP current talent. It’s not rocket science.

    • Brett

      While I’m not necessarily advocating it, trading Garza would be anything but a “dump.” It would be about getting a cache of prospects and ML-ready players.

      • Deez

        Thank you, Brett.
        Also, it’s no way you can “DUMP” Soriano or Zambrano.
        They will be Cubs in 2012, whether they are on the time or not. No one’s taking them if we’re not paying 75%+ of their salaries.

  • Fishin Phil

    Mike Quade: ” Those guys, they’ve anchored this club, and where we would be without them I have no idea.”

    Anchor = a device used to hold a ship fast to the bottom.

    Sounds about right.

    • Ian Afterbirth

      I winced at that line as well – it was like Quade was intentionally delivering a straight line which you, Phil, hit out of the park.

  • Curt

    Good call fishin Phil except this us the titanic and we not only hit the iceberg once we back up and hit it again to make sure we sink