Any other Michigan fans out there? Today marks the Wolverines’ best chance to finally win “The Game” in half a dozen years. Go Blue.
- Japanese ace Yu Darvish was expected to be posted (or to be confirmed as not posting (i.e., made available to MLB teams)) within the last week or so. That has not happened, leaving teams interested in pursuing him – like the Cubs – in the lurch. New York Baseball Digest reported on Wednesday that Darvish “likely” will not be posted this Winter because his divorce proceedings are being delayed, and Darvish and his agent do not want to post until Darvish is unmarried (it sounds like Kanye West song).
- But, about that last bullet: I’ve not been able to find a mainstream media source reporting the issue (the closest is Rotoworld, whose report traces back to the NY Baseball Digest piece). That’s not to say blog reports like this are necessarily bogus (um, hello); I’m only saying that it seems strange to me that this report would come out back on Wednesday, and no major source has yet picked it up and dug a little deeper. And, perhaps it’s the former lawyer in me, but this operative sentence, “his soon to be ex-wife’s lawyer … has already filed two depositions delaying their court appearance,” doesn’t make any legal sense (Japanese law could obviously be significantly different from here in the States, but you don’t “file” a deposition – you “notice” and “take” a deposition (with some exceptions not relevant here). And doing so doesn’t really “delay their court appearance,” depositions are typically built into the case schedule – what would “delay their court appearance” (whatever “court appearance” that is) would be some kind of request for an extension, or for a new case schedule. Again, things could be different in Japan, but it seems like whoever was conveying this information to NYBD may not have, like, known what they were talking about.)
- Also, about that thing two bullets ago: both Jon Heyman and Jon Paul Morosi say Darvish is still more likely than not to be posted. Interesting side discussion going on on Twitter last night: if Darvish isn’t posted, doesn’t the trade market for Matt Garza develop even more strongly? The answer is certainly yes … but, of course, the Cubs won’t have a crack at Darvish this Winter (you may think me nuts, but I don’t see a fundamental conflict between (a) wanting to trade Matt Garza for multiple ML-ready pieces and (b) wanting to sign Yu Darvish with an eye toward competing in 2012 and beyond). Also, the increase in Garza’s market would only be by a factor of one pitcher.
- Morosi reiterates the standing belief that all Cubs – he highlights Matt Garza, Sean Marshall, and Marlon Byrd – are available in “the right deal.”
- Speaking of Garza, a Toronto Blue Jays writer calls him a “reasonable mid-rotation option.” Garza was the 13th best pitcher in baseball (by WAR) last year (and 8th best by FIP). When potential trade partners say things like “reasonable mid-rotation option” and “Garza” in the same sentence, let’s be sure to remind them of this fact. Over and over. And over.
- A nice column on Josh Vitters and his development. As I always say: there are plenty of reasons to remain optimistic about the just-turned-22-a-couple-months-ago prospect.
- Paul Sullivan wonders what cultural changes might come to the Cubs – jumbotron, no more “Cubbies” or “Go Cubs Go,” etc. It’s the kind of article you’d expect to see in the days after Thanksgiving. That doesn’t make it bad, mind you – just extra fluffy.
- The Cubs have re-signed minor league free agent pitchers Justin Berg and Marco Carillo. The former has had a couple unsuccessful cups of tea, while the latter was just on the verge of it last year. The Cubs’ notable remaining free agent minor leaguers include Angel Guzman, Jeff Stevens, and Robert Coello, among others.
- The Blue Jays asked the Red Sox for Clay Buchholz as compensation for manager John Farrell earlier this offseason. *Titters.*