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Those of you who were around for the 24-hour Trade Deadline Blogathon (for those of you who weren’t, yes, I really did that), you know that I have a particular affinity for Chick-Fil-A. Well, my affection has doubled this month. Anyone else had that insanely delicious peppermint chocolate chip milkshake? It is, of course, horrible for you, but I find myself making weekly excuses to go get myself one (“I had a light lunch today,” “I rode the exercise bike for 25 minutes today,” “the shake is only around for the holidays, damn it!”). It may be the best tasting thing I’ve ever had. Refined, my palate is not.

  • New Cub Ian Stewart is saying the things you’d expect a guy in his position to say. First, on replacing Aramis Ramirez: “I’ve replaced some guys who have had good careers at that position. It’s not something that I’m going to be thinking about – ‘Hey, I’m replacing this guy and I have to do as well as him or better.’ I realize what [Ramirez] did for that organization there and I’m sure you guys and the fans appreciated it. I just hope I come in and do well and get the same support he got over there.”
  • On his prospect for success in Chicago, Stewart is optimistic, primarily because he expects to get consistent starts. “It just doesn’t seem like all the time I was given the best opportunity to play,” Stewart said of his time in Colorado. “With the situation now, with Aramis Ramirez gone and one of the guys maybe that had a chance to play third [DJ LeMahieu] going to Colorado, that spot is kind of open. I think this gives me a great opportunity to be that everyday third baseman and get the at-bats I need to be successful. Change of scenery? I don’t know, but in the long run, being in a spot where I’m going to be able to play every day is going to be the best thing for me.”
  • On his abysmal 2011 season, Stewart doesn’t want to blame injuries, but … he says it was the injuries. “There was a lot of adversity that went on with me last year,” Stewart said. “I’m not a guy who has always been hampered by injuries in my career. Lingering injury issues have never been my problem. And for whatever reason this year it was. I’m not trying to make excuses for the poor season I had but injuries do play a part in a guy’s season and how the season turns out …. At the major league level I had been struggling with the wrist injury. In my opinion, the [problem] was bringing me up and back between the major and minor leagues and never getting settled. I know it’s not the same as the major leagues, but I had success down at Triple-A. The issue wasn’t the wrist because after I hurt it in July it just became a lost season.”
  • Stewart is expected to speak to hitting coach Rudy Jaramillo soon, and may begin work with him before position players report to Spring Training. That would be swell.
  • Tony Campana won the Tony Conigliaro Award, presented to a ballplayer who has overcome adversity (Campana beat cancer as a kid). I still think he needs to learn how to bunt and to take a few pitches, but there’s no way not to cheer about something like this. Well-deserved, Tony.
  • The Cubs were among the Winter Meetings’ winners, but only by virtue of the rest of the NL Central getting weaker.
  • Yesterday the A’s traded young starter Trevor Cahill and reliever Craig Breslow to the Arizona Diamondbacks for pitching prospects Jarrod Parker and Ryan Cook, as well as outfield prospect Collin Cowgill. The return for the A’s is quite good (Cahill is young and has had one great year, but he’s also had two merely average years), and, in that sense, could help the Cubs in their efforts to maximize a return for Matt Garza should they elect to move him. On the other hand, the move takes one more team off the market for a top-line pitcher, and leaves Gio Gonzalez hanging out there for the Cubs to compete with (or to try and acquire, if they decide to go in a completely different direction – though I remain suspect of the Cubs’ ability to put together a package sufficient to net Gonzalez).
  • Fishin Phil

    I’m not sold on Stewart, but I hope the FO is right and he blossoms given this golden opportunity.  For a guy looking to rebound, he couldn’t ask for a better situation.

    • kubphan82

      While his career numbers have his home/away splits almost identical, slightly better HR away, we can feel good that he didn’t “take advantage” or “inflate” his totals with Colorado numbers. He could ask for a better situation: One where the wind isn’t blowing in to begin his season…

  • Tyler31

    Who were the other players that were nominated for the Tony Conigliaro Award

    • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

      I’m not sure if that’s public, but it could be as many as one from each team.

  • Rooster

    Stewart…good trade Theo. 2012 will be the Stewie to LaHair show in the infield. I’m still curious how he’s going to fix the pitching. If he plans on trading half the staff midseason he’ll need something stashed away. Jeffery and Marshall belong in the starting rotation at some point.

    • Tyler31

      If you put Marshall in the rotation then it takes away a lot of his value to the Cubs because then he pitches once every five days instead of having him pitch 3 times a week in the most crucial spots.

      • hogie

        A good starter is more valuable than a good reliever anyday. That said, I agree with you for different reasons. As a starter, Marshall was never all that good, and as a reliever he has been great. The guy has done everything the team asked of him, and is now successful and comfortable in this role. I would rather have him as a great reliever than a meh starter.

        • Tyler31

          I agree with you 100%

           

        • Levi

          Couldn’t agree with you more! LOVE Marshall in the pen That is, without question where he belongs

    • Richdanna

      Marshall is the best LH reliever in baseball. Why would you even consider moving him from that role?

  • http://www.michigangoat.blogspot.com MichiganGoat

    So next step for Tony is the MVP award?

  • ottoCub

    I like the Cubs moves (and non-moves) so far this off-season.

    The free-agent market this year seems weak-ish once you get past the big-name, big-money players like Pujols, Fielder, Wilson, Reyes, and Buehrle. So far, the Cubs are letting other teams drop the big bucks on these players, saving money while they focus more on research and carefully choosing less expensive players to target, who either have high unrealized potential (Stewart) or are consistent good defense, solid on-base type players (DeJesus). They’ve also added a couple of high upside minor leaguers to the club, who may or may not ever make the major league team, but at the very least they will be available for a future trade for the right high-impact player.

    Based on the limited activity at the Winter meetings, it also seems as if teams are still trying to sort through the new CBA and how it will effect their long-term strategies. It’s possible this is why there haven’t been many trades yet. And frankly, the Cubs don’t have a lot of prospects to use in trades for big-impact players anyway, so it’s not surprising they haven’t made any blockbuster moves. I’d expect a few more middle-of-the-road trades of the Colvin/Stewart variety; filling some holes on the Cubs major-league roster and minor-league system, while moving players who don’t have a lot of opportunity with the Cubs.

    The strategy seems to be to develop the club slowly, throughout all levels. And I hope this continues for the next few years.

    • ottoCub

      But who knows… the Cubs could also announce in the next couple days that they’ve signed Fielder for 5 years $130million, and traded Garza and a couple prospects for a left-handed starter and prospects that are a better match for Cubs needs. And that would make me happy too! :)

  • Miller

    If the Cubs sign Fielder and Edwin Jackson, keep Garza, Soto, and Marmol I think they can make a run at the Central. Worst case, if they fall out of contention they’d have a ton of attractive pieces at the trade deadline to spin off (Garza, Marshal, Marmol, Soto, Byrd, Dempster?, Zambrano?, etc…) that could jump start the re-building process. Thoughts?

    • Bren

      I fall in the camp that believes closers, or the notion of them, are completely overrated. So if you can spin off Marmol now, amidst all the clamor for Bell, Bailey etc, do it

  • Jim

    What about a deal centered around garza and kinsler? Then the cubs could go get darvish and sign fielder.

    • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

      The Rangers aren’t interested in moving Kinsler. They’re actually trying to extend him.

      • Jim

        I wish they were. Kinsler and Castro would be a pretty solid combo.

    • MightyBear

      Rangers aren’t going to trade Kinsler unless the pitchers name is Koufax or Gibson.

      • jandersonjr81

        I was thinking more like if Nolan Ryan could trade for himself. If we has Ryan to trade to Ryan, he would definitely let Kinsler go.

  • FINNER

    Saint Nick (my mother-n-law) gave me a BN sweatshirt this year!!!!!!! Odd to get a Saint Nick gift at the age of 33 but couldn’t think of a better gift to receive.
    Thanks for all the work you do Brett. Have you very considered doing a pod cast?

    • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

      Nice! Thanks.

      And, yes, I have considered a podcast. I wouldn’t call it “in the works,” but it’s something that could happen next year.

  • CubSouth

    With this team, minus Garza and big Z in trades, I can’t see us winning 45 games and that’s if we are lucky! I’ve always been optimistic about the Cubs chances ever since I started watching baseball, but come on, please someone tell me I’m wrong and that Theo/Jed will pull sunshine out their butt and we will have something to keep us excited for the 2012 season? I feel like I’m at the hospital and the doctor is smiling saying “don’t worry by cutting ur arm off, we will save ur life and keep the infection from spreading”

    • Richdanna

      If the long-term prognosis in cutting off your arm was to save your life, than the doctors would be making the right move.

      That said, Epstein is making the right move by not going after overpriced free agents that would tak them from a 70 to a 75 win team, and in the process handcuff their financial flexibility.

      Do yourself a favor: Write off the 2012 season. Stop looking for a silver lining. There won’t be one. The rebuild process is going to be long and tedious. If they wanted quick fixes, they would have stayed with Hendry and just rebuilt via long-term, overvaluated free agent deals with NTC’s….

  • Shawn

    George King III of the NY Times said an NL Executive told him the Rangers were considering making a run at Fielder and then trading Mitch Moreland in a deal to the Rays for Wade Davis. According to him, they also have interest in Casey McGehee to play first base allowing them to make the same trade. That could take out one more ptotential suitor for Garza.

  • die hard

    How can someone advocate trading Garza but draw the line at Castro? Either you have to advocate both go and Cubs rebuild until the cows come home or both stay and Cubs make a failed run for it in 2012. I have advocated trading Castro for months now as I believe he has peaked as an infielder and also as a hitter if he remains an infielder. If Cubs would move him to RF so as to fully unleash his potential then I would say keep him. Garza is and should be the centerpiece of Cubs rotation unless they can add Cain or Lincecum which would make Garza a good #2. But to argue for trading Garza for prospects while keeping Castro at SS is insane.

    • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

      Matt Garza is 28, under contract for two years, and will cost $8.5M and $11M during those two years.

      Starlin Castro is 21, under contract for five more years, and won’t even be eligible for arbitration until after this year.

      That’s how. It isn’t difficult.

      • BetterNews

        Garza isn’t going anywhere. Trust me.

      • JR

        Exactly Brett, and Diehard how can you say Castro has peaked?? He is 21 and has unlimited potential. If he can improve his Dfence some, and the Cubs get the type of production he is capable of at Shortstop that is a HUGE asset.

        • die hard

          Castros a luxury that the Cubs can ill afford if trying to build a new team. I am sure that there are teams needing salary room that are deep in large contract good players who would jump at packaging 3 starting players for Castro.

          • Nomar’s Left Glove

            You’ve got us once again, Die Hard! The Cubs can ill-afford young, cheap, super-high upside shortstops that are under team control for years. You’re right we should trade him immediately for old expensive players with bad contracts. You must have been a Hendry fan.

      • die hard

        If Garza is not worth his salary then why would any team trade what hes worth for him unless the Cubs pick up some of the salary.? If Castro is worth more than his salary then why wouldnt any team trade what hes worth for him? If the Cubs could get 3 everyday above average ballplayers for Castro, wouldnt the Cubs be wise to make the trade no matter what their salaries? Such a move would greatly improve the club.

        • Nomar’s Left Glove

          What do you do for a living? You probably work in government, don’t you?

    • Rob

      Castro offers more of a wow factor than Garza; the kind that sells tickets. Yes, he’s been rough in he field thus far, but to say a 21-year-old has peaked in his development is premature, to say the least. If he were 25 or 26 and still playing the same way at short, I’d be more willing to agree with you. As things stand, I’m of the opinion (and I’m sure the front office is, too) that he’s only going to improve all aspects of his game, THEN the prime years will kick in. That’s excitement that Garza simply doesn’t provide, which makes him more expendable.

      • JR

        Good points Rob. IMO there are very few, if any young players I would rather have than Castro. He is still really raw, and already an all star who led the league in hits. His defence can be frustrating, but the tools are there.

    • dob2812

      die hard, what on earth would you be moving castro to right for? That makes less sense than saying he’s peaked, when all he’s done is get better and better so far.

      • Tyler31

        Who on earth would ever consider trading Castro, he is right now 21 years old and is a top 3 SS in baseball.  He also has not even began to reach his top potential which is scary because as a 20 year old rookie he hit .300 and as a 21 year old in his second year in the majors he hit .307 and had the most hits in the National League.  Like I said who on earth would ever consider trading Castro.

        • BetterNews

          Everybody on the “block” according to Theom and comp.

          • Tyler31

            But that does not mean that they would ever consider trading Castro they are just saying everybody but really they mean everyone except Castro is on the block.

            • BetterNews

              Hah. Then they are lying?

              • Tyler31

                yes

                 

                • BetterNews

                  Rest my case, and hopefully many others!

            • JR

              I think there is a price for everyone. If the Marlins offered a package built around Stanton for Castro the Cubs would have to listen. Obviously chances are no team would be willing to give what it would take to obtain Castro, but there is a price.

    • Live soft

      I agree with die hard, why would we want to keep one of the youngest cheapest players with great upside under team control for lots of years??
      I also agree athletic ability, and soft hands with a good throwing arm are wasted in a place like shortsop, Everyone knows Sorryanus could probably play good enough defense at short

    • Nomar’s Left Glove

      Die Hard,
      I am literally baffled by how bad of an idea you have here. How on Earth can you say that a 21 year old has peaked as a player? Most MLB players don’t even make it to the bigs by 21 years old. I’m not sure, but I think both Lincecum and Cain are over 21, so I’m sure they’ve peaked too! Seriously, Castro is the type of player that you build around, not trade. I’m sure the fo would listen to offers for Castro, but the trade would have to include Jesus Christ and 3 apostles to get him.

  • Shane

    A little off subject but i really want the cubs to go after Mark Trumbo that would give us a young infield a team to really build on over the years.

    • R.I.P. Santo

      I agree Shane I like him he filled in for Morales great and is now expendable

  • Kansas Cubs Fan

    I still think the majority of you people don’t realize Theo and Jed aren’t going for it next year.

    They have said multiple times that there going to build the team for long term success.

    All the move there making now are for the future or to hold the team over until the prospects are ready!

    So calm down and get ready for the same type of season we had last year.

    • Fishin Phil

      Yes and no.  It will take time to build the perennial powerhouse that is the ultimate goal.  Although the team may not improve vastly over last year’s performance, I do expect them to play better.  I expect Sveum to actually stress fundamentals rather than just give lip service to it.  I expect to see the pitching staff handled in a sane manner.  I believe that no matter what the lineup looks like come Opening Day, we will see better baseball in 2012.

      • Kansas Cubs Fan

        I said that because we just lost 50+ HR and 150+ RBI from Ramirez and Pena.

        I’m not sure if LaHair and Stewart are going to be able to replace their offense, by the way I’m not complaining that their gone I just don’t think their going to put up those numbers.

        • Fishin Phil

          They probably won’t put up those kind of numbers by themselves, but I don’t think they have to.  I look for others to help pick up the load. I think we’ll see Castro’s numbers continue to climb.  I expect some kind of move at 2nd base that also helps contribute offensively.

          I’m not saying I expect a playoff run, I just think they will be better than that abomination that took the field last year.

          • BetterNews

            I would agree, but by the “nature” of my user name, I would damn you to “hell”. Too many exclamation points.

          • Lou

            Actually, I don’t agree with LaHair annd Stewart/Soriano as the Cubs #4 and #5 hitters, we stand to lose more games this year. While it may be true that the fans can/should write off 2012, my concern lies with 2013 and beyond. I don’t see Fielder as a quick fix or free-wheelin’ spending of the Hendry days. He’s younger than when Soriano signed with the Cubs, LH power (which is something the Cubs have historically lacked), and it’s not like the Cubs would be signing multiple FAs (like Hendry ala 2007) because Wilson and Buerhle (the top two pitching FAs) have already signed. Who would replace Fielder offensive abilities in the Cubs didn’t sign him? Yes, Theo could always find a diamond in the rough in the draft, but seeing the top draft picks on MLB.com, I’m led to conclude that Theo and Jed will go the SP route. Totally fine with that, but it doesn’t get the team the offense it needs. Votto, the next big offense star, will be 30 when reaches FA and probably command and get a similar type contract in terms of $$$ and years. As for Garza, like to see him traded to Detroit. Looking at the top prospects, Tigers have Turner and tons of good SP, plus a RF stud in Garcia. Turner could make the rotation this year, even if it means taking his lumps. Garza could be kept on a crappy team this year and a .500 next year, but why? And then he hits FA, where the Cubs can be assured he’ll resign with the team anyway? Makes more sense, IMO, to replace Garza with multiple pieces. Think about in terms of the Tigers perspective. Their rotation would then include Verlander, Garza, Porcello, Scherzer, and Fister. Solid and dominant and necessary when your playoff bound and facing the likes of Puljos, the Red Sox, Rangers, and Yankees. So, IMO, that deal makes sense if the Cubs can pull it off.

        • CubFan Paul

          ..so what if Theo&Co. sign Fielder for 1B?

    • CubSouth

      Not to be rude but like “duh”, Kansas Cubs Fan. Im not sure anyone on here was expecting the Cubs to go for it next year. Theo would have made himself out to be a liar if that were the case. What I and some of the others were trying to convey is that we want to see something that resembles a competitive team next year and not a bunch of has beens or retreads just to feel out a lineup card. Balancing between future sustainable success and all the while making a competitive team for next year is tricky but I believe it can be done. If we were a bottom feeder market like the A’s or Pirates then there’s no way I could see that happening. If a FA doesn’t fit into ur plans, fine, but u can’t expect to go hard after a “potential” FA next season because their contract is up. They can be traded or re-signed by then. I still trust in the FO but its growing fainter by the week.

      • Kansas Cubs Fan

        I honestly don’t know how competitive of a team they can put together, because most of the free agents are to expensive or to old to do us any good.

        The team doesn’t have many assets to trade for anyone to make us competitive with out completely gutting the farm system. The front office is kinda stuck between a rock and a hard place.

        I’m just saying I don’t think there is much for them to do besides go after low key guys and players coming off of injuries with out hurting the organization even further.

        • CubSouth

          Well put KCF, well put…. I still believe we should go after Fielder and maybe a reclamation project in a SP or two. I just don’t think u can expect fans to come out and support a team my softball team and I can beat. Right now I wouldn’t pay to go see them in Atlanta but I will try to see them in Miami though it will be hard at the beginning of the season.

  • Shane

    Thats why i wanna go for Mark Trumbo he is 25 belted 29 homeruns a little over average batting average but he is someone to build off

    • hansman1982

      PRoblem is the Angels will NOT be willing to part with Trumbo.  More likely to get Morales.

      • Lou

        Actually, I don’t see them parting with Morales either, primarily as an offensive safeguard if someone on the team gets injured or to be used as a DH. The Angels have shifted focus and power to AL West. I think they’ll hold on to all their players just to keep ahead of the Rangers. I still in the camp that the Cubs should trade Garza.

  • Travis

    If we go to the playoffs this year, they’re going to make moneyball 2 ha. Who would play theo? Maybe Ben Afleck haha

    • Kansas Cubs Fan

      I think If Theo were in a movie he would be played by Jake Gyllenhaal.

      • Bluekoolaidaholic

        We could call the movie “Comeback Mountain”

        • Kansas Cubs Fan

          I knew something like that was going to come up.

          • Bren

            thats what she said

      • MightyBear

        I think he would be played by Wilfred Bremley.

        • Ron

          We won’t get any older and we’ll never die.

  • Frat Rat

    Stewart = Placeholder

  • Matt Murton

    White girls LOVE Ian Stewart.

  • Jim

    What kind of package do you think it would take to get Daniel Murphy?

  • Kansas Cubs Fan

    Just read that the Angels plan to tender contract to Kendry Morales. Looks like if Jed and Theo want him they will have to trade for him.

  • Jeff

    Everyone talks about Fielder and now Morales, who hasn’t played in two years after a horrible leg injury. Come on, is that the kind of player we want to build around. I’m not sure Morales will ever be a decent fielder again. Love Fielder, but he’s way too expensive and this rebuilding will take time because of the pitching development needed.

    Two better choices in my opinion would be either Anthony Rizzo or Lars Anderson. Jed and Theo are pretty familiar with these two. I understand Rizzo would probably be hard to get and Anderson is more available with Gonzalez blocking his path.

    These kind of trades make more sense going into the start of this season, than going for someone like Morales. We need to trade for someone whose blocked “and” under-developed. We don’t need to give up a bunch of talent to a team for a good player who is to far into his prime and just blocked.

  • die hard

    Seattle’s Carp, Ackley and Pineda to Cubs for Castro….anybody say no to this deal?

    • Jeff

      No, No, No, No, No……you are an idiot!

      Carp is blaw, Ackley might end up a poor mans Utley, Pineda, might end up the next Carlos Silva.

      What don’t you like about Castro?

      • die hard

        Hes not the player to build a team around and just to keep him cause hes cheap is short sighted. In fact, use his low salary to attract teams to shed contracts of better than average players now. Getting 3 ready to start players for him now could be type of rebuilding that would give Cubs a shot in 2012.

        • Jeff

          That’s your problem, your hoping this team will compete in 2012 and your willing to make short sighted decisions to make that happen.

          If you think you need one player to build around that will win you championships and Castro’s not the “ONE”, you are delusional!

          You keep him because he is good, not because he’s cheap. His stats are great for his age compared to his peers. Show me another 21 yr old who hit .306 in 650 at bats. Plus he plays a premium position. He should still be in AA practicing defense, but the bat is that good.

          He is the next Miguel Tejada, in his prime Tejada…. you don’t trade him for 3 prospects, two of whom might never pan out.

          Trade him when he’s 29, that’s 8, I repeat 8 years from now when he’s old and fat and has slowed down some.

          If you traded him now, You would need 5 or 6 prospects and few teams have that kind of talent. Texas is one but they have a great shortstop.

          Start the season, pray your veterans play well and put up good numbers, then trade them for future talent at the trade deadline.

          Until then, that’s the best we can hope for.

          • die hard

            As I said twice already, trade him for 3 starting players, not prospects. 3 players who are above average and who start now but whose team can no longer afford.

            • Jeff

              Grasp some reality.

              Name one team that has 3 under 25 yr old major league players who have posted quality numbers, that they can no longer afford considering that those players haven’t even reached arbitration yet.

              Quit bullshitting and name one team.

              • die hard

                quit thinking through your pie hole and you will see the senselessness of your reply……under 25 is not the criteria….3 above avg players with large contracts from a team deep in players is the criteria…players can be any age…as long as productive and will be starters is the criteria…I already gave you 3 from Seattle…how about Johnson, Encanarcion and Rauch from Toronto for Castro?….many teams have 3 that could meet criteria…… do your research and then dont come back to say that the dog ate your homework…peace

                • Jeff

                  Your an idiot! What’s your problem with Castro, did he bitch slap you?

                  Johnson Encarnacion and Rauch???? Ok, Let’s start with Rauch, he was a free agent and just signed with the Mets.
                  Encarnacion is a lousy player and Kelly Johnson has only had one good year ever.

                  Carp has yet to put up any decent numbers and probably will never be more than below average.
                  Ackley will probably be good in a few years but he’s not better than Castro and no team, especially one thin on starting pitching like the Mariners are going to give up their best pitching prospects(Pineda).

                  Had you suggested that we trade for Felix Hernandez that would be a decent thought to consider, however they would want all of our decent players in the farm system for him so highly unlikely.

                  No, your the one that keeps pulling shit out of your ass as far as suggestions for trading Castro for a bunch of crappy players.

                  Your suggestions would be laughed out of every GM’s office in baseball.

                  I’m beginning to think your just a poser, a white sux fan who is trying to get a rise out of people.

                  Someone ought to Lee Harvey Oswald your ass! If you were the Cubs GM, we would be sinking like the Titanic with your stupidity!

                  • die hard

                    As usual you are missing the point of this exercise…Castro is the best trade bait the Cubs have..He has shown enough to entice other teams and he will come cheap…Now will be the best time to leverage this into a good move for the Cubs so as to cement 3 positions for next 3-5 years as opposed to having Castro playing out of position until he becomes too expensive to move easily. Who the 3 players are doesnt matter as long as will cement 3 positions for the Cubs…your criticism as to who I suggested may be warranted, but you have not put up any decent argument against why such a move would be good for the Cubs save Castro is young and hits .300…Is he going to get cubs to WS all by himself?..NO…but if Cubs make such a move, the liklihood of getting to WS increases significantly…Get over your crush on Castro and you will think clearer…and for whats its worth, I have been a die hard Cubs fan since 1955…

                    • Towes

                      You’re listening to die hard? He wanted a Soto, Reed Johnson corner infield!

                    • Jeff

                      I still do not understand your logic. I have no crush on Castro, he still has plenty to work on. I am optimistic that he will turn into a gem and am willing to give him two more years to show that progress before I would consider trading him.

                      You argument is to trade a potential super star for the sake of filling multiple positions with what?

                      Three all-stars that are at the top of their game? No team would trade three all star caliber players for Castro. We might get three mediocre players though.

                      Dear Phillies, please give us Howard, Utley and Lee for Castro, cause you don’t want to pay their contracts no more or have a chance at going to the world series.

                      Dear Dodgers, we would like Kemp, Kershaw and Either for Castro.

                      To Mr. Yankee, please trade us Cano, Teixeira and Sabathia for Castro.

                      Are you kidding me?

                      The only thing you have suggested is a bunch of crap for a player that could be the next Jeter.

                      Where would the Yankees be today if they traded Jeter away in 1995 for Jose Valentin, Darryl Hamilton and Greg Vaughn?

                      You think one of those players would have gone on to be Mr. 3,000 as a Yankee?

                    • matt3

                      reed johnson would rake if he started.. i’d be all for it.

                    • matt3

                      My “realistic” dream top of the lineup would be:

                      1 RF DeJesus
                      2 CF Johnson
                      3 SS Castro

                      I would rather have Reed Johnson in center field than Byrd, but that’s probably not going to happen.

                    • Brian

                      The problem is, Castro isn’t worth 3 quality players. At his best, Castro may be a 20hr, 20+ SB guy with a plus 300 average. But Castro has a couple of down sides.

                      1.) He will someday be a very good SS or 3B player, but currently he’s a defensive liability.

                      2.) He was brought up REALLY YOUNG. That’s a plus, but it also means there will be a bidding war to re-sign him even before he reaches his prime. In other words, he’s a guy you would have to give up 3 players for in order to develop him… and then you might not get him at his best.

                      I’m a Cubs fan of 29 years and Castro is currently my favorite Cub, but even I wouldn’t give up 3 quality guys for him. Let’s put it a different way: (for example) Would you give up 3 guys that hit .275, 15HR’s and 10 SB’s for one guy that hits .310 w/ 18Hr’s and 20 SB’s? That’s a LOT of productivity to replace on your club.

                      Your original statement had this as a salary dump, but that’s something the Cubs don’t need to take on right now… and frankly, those over priced guys are being dumped for a reason. It wouldn’t do the Cubs any good in the long term. The Cubs would most likely get would be a mediocre major league player and a couple of AA guys with good upsides…. and that’s not worth trading one of the few stars casual Cubs fans will buy merchandise for.

  • Cliffy

    RT @PioDeportes1: Breaking: #Rangers make huge offer to Prince Fielder

    This guy was seemingly the first to report Pujols deal with Angels was done the night before story broke so take it for what its worth.

  • Cliffy

    QT @PioDeportes1: #Rangers offer to Prince likely in the 160-180M range

  • mb1.0.2

    Brett,

    Right there with ya about the peppermint shakes from Chick-Fil-A. Had one myself tonight. They’re one of the best things EVER, and I would consider my palette more or less “refined.” Nothing wrong with loving a good milkshake now and again (or once in a week)!

    Oh, and go, Cubs!

    • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

      It was BRUTALLY hard not to get myself (another) one tonight after writing this post.

      ‘F it. Maybe tomorrow.

      • Dave

        Addict

        • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

          I’m freaking itching.

          • Dave

            You’re like the blogging Amy Winehouse.

            • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

              They tried to make me to go Steak ‘n Shake, I said no, no, no.

              • Mike

                I love Chick-Fil-A too but they don’t have one in my city (Peoria, IL) but they are beginning to build one and it is expected to open in the spring! The wife and I always stop at one when we travel though. I will have to try the peppermint shake. Where are you based Brett? I just started following BN and am thoroughly enjoying the info. This will be the most I follow the Cubs offseason ever!

  • Bren
  • MC2

    50 game suspension without the Prince there… …Cinci fans just started licking their lips! CUBS 2012 Wildcard!!!

  • Sweetjamesjones

    That news really made my day. Ha!

  • Katie

    MVP on ‘roids. Classic.

  • Johnr42

    Looks like the Angels will tender Morales a contract (substantiated via mlbtr).

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