June has arrived, and there will be no June Swoon for the Cubs, who got their swooning out of the way early this year.
- Nothing gets the Internetz into more of a tizzy than a rumor that the Cubs are shopping Starlin Castro (well, maybe a rumor that they’re calling up Anthony Rizzo), and so it was yesterday when Bob Nightengale suggested that the Cubs have informed teams Castro could be had for a couple “impact” prospects. A number of local and national folks offered their responses to the rumor, and Theo Epstein offered one of his patented “denials” (the gist: Castro is a core player we’re building around, we want more Castros, not fewer). Gordon Wittenmyer cited a number of sources who told him the Cubs aren’t moving Castro. Danny Knobler cited a team who recently spoke to the Cubs and was told Castro is at the top of the list of players they won’t trade. Jon Heyman cites a Cubs source who tells him that the Cubs have never mentioned Castro’s name in trade talks (think about how artfully worded that denial is). Dave Kaplan says the Cubs should be shopping Castro as part of a reworking of the entire roster. ESPN’s duo of Bruce Levine and Doug Padilla do perhaps the best job of sussing out the nuanced truth that the Cubs may not be “trying” to trade Castro, but might “consider” trading him.
- What can you glean from all of that, if you assume all reactions are true? Well, it’s exactly as I said yesterday: the Cubs aren’t affirmatively looking to move Castro. But they’ll listen, as any smart organization would. If some team wants to step up with an insane, can’t-turn-down offer? Well, the Cubs will stand ready to cross that bridge if they ever come to it.
- Paul Sullivan offers his thoughts on when you might still want to pay attention to the Cubs, even if you’ve accepted that they’re going to be terrible the rest of the way.
- Kerry Wood talks to Sarah Spain about his retirement.
- So, my understanding is that the Illinois General Assembly’s final day of the Spring Session is today, and, if they don’t approve a funding plan for Wrigley Field, the time line of construction (hoping to break ground as soon as the season ends) could be delayed. That could have been a negotiating tactic by the Cubs, or it could be a legit concern. In any event, it’s been extremely quiet for the last week.
- BN’er Myles dropped a great Baseball Prospectus article on us in the comments yesterday, and here it is, in case you missed it. It’s dense, but really impressive – the gist: if you’re going to take a high school player in the Draft, shoot for the younger ones.
- Reminder: you can win a sweet pair of Chicago Cubs headphones from BiGR Audio if you enter by 3pm today. Details here.
- BN’er SirCub drops some awesome on the Message Board about the luckiest fan to attend a game at Wrigley Field in recent memory. It’s a story in pictures.
- The MLBullets at BCB note Matt Kemp’s once-again-injured hamstring.