For preventative/family history reasons, tomorrow morning I will experience the supreme pleasure of a colonoscopy (it’s really not that bad).
This impacts me in a number of uncomfortable ways (mostly today), but it impacts you in a few tangential ways as well: (1) After tomorrow morning’s Bullets (which will be on the early side), I’ll likely be totally unavailable for a few hours; (2) if big news breaks during that time, I trust that some of you can keep everyone else updated in the comments; (3) after I resume posting in the late morning/afternoon tomorrow, I could be loopy, so you may have to read about how the Cubs have signed Yoenis Soler but are trading him for Matt Garza as compensation to the Red Sox.
- New Cub Chris Volstad made SI’s list of the top pitchers age 25 and under who were traded this offseason. But, um, he was last. “Volstad has shown little improvement, but the good news is that he’s 6-foot-8 and still only 25 years old, so the Cubs do have hope that he blooms late, as sometimes happens with tall pitchers. ‘Worth a shot for the Cubs, but I don’t think he’s the kind of guy who comes back to haunt you after a trade,’ the evaluator said.” Now, before you get too bummed about Volstad being last on the list, know that the list was only five players, and the four in front of Volstad were Gio Gonzalez, Mat Latos, Michael Pineda, and Trevor Cahill.
- Tim Sheridan has another great entry over at Boys of Spring, noting that Matt Garza, David DeJesus and Dave Sappelt have arrived in Mesa at Cubs camp. As usual, Tim has some good pictures up, and relates an anecdote about DeJesus: “Late in the day after things were pretty much finished I noticed DeJesus out on one of the fields all by himself practicing base running drills and working on his bursts from base to base. This is part of why a guy like David was brought in, to show the young players what kind of dedication is needed to stay productive in the bigs, especially when you’re on the more mature side of 30.”
- FanGraphs takes a look at which organizations are “highly analytical” (aka “new school”), which are “old school,” and which are a mix of the two. The Cubs, unsurprisingly, fall into the first category now that Theo/Jed/Jason are running the show. It’s an interesting read, but it’s hard to imagine any organizations, in this day and age, not having a significant “analytical” contingent, even if they favor traditional scouting.
- Some Cubs have changed their uniform numbers, and some new Cubs have had their assigned. Missing from that list is Matt Garza, who is switching to number 22.
- Carrie Muskat says Geovany Soto is in great, trim shape, which has tended to be very important to his performance. Apparently he was showing folks his abs at CubsCon. That’s hot.
- Theo Epstein hasn’t been afraid of trading former first round draft picks soon after signing them, if he’s getting back the right pieces for his team. No real surprise there.
- I’m still waiting on Bud Selig to make his compensation decision … on what the Cardinals should get for letting Jeff Luhnow be given a promotion with the Astros (GM). Oh. That’s right. The Cardinals, for all of our rivalry, aren’t run by a greedy, spiteful crew.
- 2011 Cubs’ draftee, pitcher James Pugliese, is interviewed about a variety of things. The one that stood out? He’s currently reading ‘The Mental Game of Baseball’ by H.A. Dorfman and Karl Kuehl, two men who feature prominently in ‘Moneyball.’ I imagine the gents implementing the new approach to player development either had something to do with that book selection, or, if not, would be very pleased with that book selection. Well done, James.
- Do yourself a favor. Go to Baseball Reference, and type “Sausage” into the search box. A nice little Easter Egg for Cubs, Pirates, and probably Brewers fans, at least.
- The discussion in the comments has been pretty great for a while (this morning notwithstanding). I just wanted to acknowledge that, thank you for that, and encourage you to continue that.