Updates on the Chicago Cubs’ managerial search and offseason plans coming later this morning. Until then, bullets…
- Red Sox GM Ben Cherington conceded yesterday that it is possible a trade between the Cubs and Red Sox could include within it a resolution of the outstanding compensation for Theo Epstein issue. In other words, it’s possible that the Cubs could trade to the Red Sox Player X and the Red Sox would send back Player Y and a release of the “compensation debt,” for lack of a better term. I doubt it will come to that, considering all of the moving parts, but it’s interesting to think about the combinations.
- The compensation issue will not be resolved by way of the managerial search, Cherington added. Some had speculated that the Cubs would let the Red Sox have their first choice of manager as compensation for Theo, but Cherington says the issues will be kept separate. As I’ve said before: the Red Sox want something tangible to which they can point for losing Epstein. The two sides will continue to talk this week, but we’re fast approaching a time when Bud Selig will throw up his hands and say enough is enough.
- Theo and Jed are set to meet with Starlin Castro for the first time this weekend, but it doesn’t sound like the two sides are planning on discussing a big-money contract extension quite yet.
- A well-timed article from Tom Verducci on the success/failure of Japanese stars when transitioning to MLB. This will get its own write-up as the Cubs’ interest in Yu Darvish progresses (presumably), but I thought it worth getting in front of you now, in case you’d like to read the whole thing. Very interesting stuff.
- Ryne Sandberg may wind up back in AAA with the Phillies after failing to land a managerial job this Winter. MLB coaching positions do not appear to be opening up for Sandberg, for whatever reason.
- The Astros signed another Cubs’ minor league free agent, IF/OF Scott Moore. Together with Brad Snyder, the Astros have their middle of the lineup when they face the Cubs.
- CBA negotiations are on hold for the upcoming owners’ meeting (tomorrow), but sources say a deal is close, and could be finalized soon thereafter. As for the details, not all executives are on board with the proposed changes to the draft and free agent compensation (the rumored changes include a cap on spending in the draft and the elimination of draft pick compensation for departed free agents). The changes, one executive said, “are incredibly short-sighted and will hurt many clubs.” Another executive said teams should be able to decide if spending heavily on draft picks is their preferred vehicle to achieve competitiveness.
- Thanks to your input on an inaugural Bleacher Nation t-shirt, I’ve come up with a rough idea of what I’m going to go with. It’s going to be simple, include the site logo, and a short, relatable slogan. Makes sense for the first shirt – we can get a little more creative in the future with additional shirts, should it come to that. So, to that end, I’ve played around with the design, but I’m reaching the extent of my skillz, and could use some help from any photoshoppers/graphic designers out there. Details on the Message Board here.