So, guess who’s not in last place anymore? Thanks to a prolonged losing streak by the Astros (during which the Cubs assisted), the Cubs are now in sole possession of fifth place in the NL Central. The Cubs are tied with the Rockies with the second worst record in baseball.

  • As you may have seen on Twitter last night, Ryan Dempster will return from the disabled list tomorrow and close out the first half against the Mets. He was previously not expected to return until after the All-Star break, but a couple of pain-free bullpen sessions, and a competitive desire have him coming back earlier. He’ll be on a pitch count of around 80 pitches, though, and you can be sure that a number of teams will be watching his outing very closely. Chris Volstad, who most recently unsuccessfully filled in for Dempster, will probably head back to AAA Iowa.
  • On the decision, Dale Sveum says Ryan Dempster’s unique abilities made it possible. “He says he feels as good as he has all year,” Sveum said. “His bullpens are as sharp as anybody’s are going to be. It’s just a matter of some durability issues maybe. The guy keeps himself in phenomenal shape. That’s one part of the decision. If it was somebody other than Ryan Dempster, you probably wouldn’t be thinking about this.”
  • Speaking of injured pitchers, Kerry Wood told Dave Kaplan that the final pitch of his famous 20 strikeout game was the first time in his career that he felt a little something in his elbow. Wood would go on to have Tommy John surgery the following year, but it’s probably unfair to conclude that the 20K game was, alone, the culprit. Besides, Wood told Kaplan, “It was worth it.”
  • Dale Sveum on Starlin Castro’s day off yesterday (which actually ended when Castro came into the game late): “I wanted to give him a day off before the [All-Star] break, one way or another. I just want him to kick back one day and just observe before the break because he’s not going to get much of a break. I want him to kick back and talk to him about scenarios on the bench.” Not a terrible idea.
  • Don’t look now, but marginal trade pieces Jeff Baker and Reed Johnson are suddenly hitting well against lefties, and are hitting .263/.306/.434 and .299/.353/.451 overall, respectively.
  • The Onion jokes about the Cubs’ organist. It it humorous.
  • BN’er (and Tribune Reporter) Josh Noel recently got a chance to do some exploring at Wrigley Field with Atlanta Braves pitching coach, and former big league pitcher, Roger McDowell. The result was an interesting and different take on the classic ballpark. Nicely done, Josh.
  • Today is the 25th anniversary of Eric Show’s beanball to the head of Andre Dawson, which ignited a dugout clearing brawl.
  • Serious Cubs Fan

    Do you think the Tigers would actually consider giving up Nick Castellanos being the center piece of a Matt Garza trade? Then throwing in a couple high upside arm prospects? Or is Nick Castellanos just untouchable? Because I’ve heard he’s untouchable and that they’d be willing to trade him. I know they probably wouldn’t be able to get Turner and Castellanos, but if we through in Vitters and maybe Barney would they think about dealing both?

    • DocPeterWimsey

      I’m neither of them, but the Tigers have stated a couple of times that Castellanos is not available.

      The Tigers would be interested in Barney: he’d be a huge fielding upgrade and actually an offensive upgrade at 2nd for them.  However, do not expect Castellanos in return.

    • Brett

      I don’t think he’s absolutely untouchable. I do think, however, that they are extremely reluctant to trade him – so much so that I don’t really have any particular hopes that the Cubs could get him.

      • Cub Style

        We could kick in an Anthony Rizzo rookie card.

      • Serious Cubs Fan

        I think if I were the cubs, I’d go for an elite prospect bat like Castellanos rather then get an “elite” prospect pitcher. I don’t think the cubs are going to get anyone who is going to be considered a true elite pitching prospect. I consider an elite pitching prospect to be considered, Trevor Bauer, Julio Teheran, Dylan Bundy, Jameson Taillon, Garret Cole, Danny Hultzen, Taijuan Walker, Archie Bradley, Skaggs, maybe shelby Miller? but I don’t consider elite Jacob turner, Manny Banuelos, if the cubs were to get one of those type of level pitchers i would want a heck of a lot more in return. So I would rather have a top hitting prospect compared to a pitcher of the level of Banuelos and Turner. Its fact that top hitting prospects pan out more often then do top pitching prospects.

    • Poopypants McGee

      What is the rush to bring in a 3b prospect? Vitters, if he continues this successful streak, needs to be given a chance. I would rather see the Cubs use Garza and Dempster to bring in some pitching. The Cubs have the bats coming through the system, and with our protected first round pick next season, the cubs can go out and sign the best SP available.

      • Serious Cubs Fan

        Vitters will never be a star thats just fact. He could be a decent MLB player maybe but thats his ceiling. And his defense will most likely be a good, he will probably always be a poor defender at the hot corner, maybe average at best. Yes I think the cubs shuld giving him a shot. I think the cubs should have him be the third baseman for the next couple to keep the spot warm for Baez till hes ready if he pans out.

        • djriz

          “Vitters will never be a star thats just fact.”

          How do we know this? Crystal Ball or Ouija Board?

          • Serious Cubs Fan

            djriz: Its called jim callis, Kevin Goldstein, keith law. I trust their talent evaluation more then yours. They say he won’t be a star. Some don’t even think he’ll be a mlb regular

            • Kyle

              I don’t trust those guys at all. They just parrot months old consensus to casual fans. The minors are too big for anyone to be an expert on all 30 organizations. Many people here know the Cubs better than they do.

              • djriz

                Thank You Kyle.

                Serious Cubs Fan…I respect your opinion that Vitters wont amount to much. Just don’t think we can say FOR SURE what he will be. That was my point.

                A few points:
                – Law, Callis and Goldstein are wrong on about 2/3 of their projections. Not a critizism, just the nature of the beast.
                -If we just looked at the numbers (without his name attached) over his career, we’d notice a positive progression.
                -If he was drafted as a college junior, he’d be a 22 year old in his 2nd year of pro ball putting up his numbers. Do you think that would influence those scouts opinions of him?

                I am NOT a scout, have never seen him play, was pissed when he was drafted because I wanted Weiters, he will probably not be what we would want from a 3rd overall. But it is possible he’ll have some value.

                • Cubs Dude

                  You might as well give it a rest djriz. Some Cubs fans love to talk trash on their own prospects and can’t be stopped. After spending a couple days reading the comments on here you’ll start thinking Brett Jackson is worse than Michael Jordan at baseball, and Vitters we’ll be lucky to take a walk in his major league career. I actually agree with what you’re saying, but some people don’t want to hear it.

                  • djriz

                    Thanks Cubs Dude.

                    Just like to make people think.

                    • Serious Cubs Fan

                      I think Vitters can amount to something but I don’t think he will be a star. Kevin Goldstein lives in the Chicagoland area and actually seen Vitters quite a bit. I think he can be decent player I just think his defense is trash which it is and at best has a chance to be mediocre to average. I retract my statement that he will FOR SURE not be a star but he has maybe a 5% chance at being a star. I’m just saying people need to stop sipping on the Kool aid about this guy. I am quite positive about a lot of kid in our farm system. I just think people need to take off our homer caps and look and see prospects for what they are. Yes Vitters could turn out to be a pretty decent major leaguer which but to say this guy will be a star is a little much. Yes there is a chance but very unlikely. I will be optimistic but I’m not going to be unrealistic and say he will

            • Jimmy james

              And everyone is so good at calling who will and who won’t turn into seomething..sheesh

              • djriz

                You speak the truth.

                We don’t know.

                The BEST scouts in the world don’t KNOW.

                If I was always right, we’d be celebrating the Hall of Fame induction of Earl Cunnignham (or Ty Griffith).

                • DocPeterWimsey

                  I think that the problem is that you are looking at this as if it has to be either deterministic or random.  It’s not: it’s probabilistic, which is all the space in between.  The guys who are highly touted now have a much higher probability of being big successes down the road than the ones who are not highly touted now.  The exceptions do not disprove this: if you say that something happens only 10% of the time, then the 1 in 10 example does not falsify the generalization.

                • Pat

                  Of course they don’t know with 100% certainty. But they do know the common attributes of players who are more likely to succeed.

                  If I get 2, 3 offsuit in the hole in holdem I don’t KNOW that it wouldn’t win that particular hand. What I do know it that the odds of it winning are pretty bad, and therefore I’m not going to invest much in it.

                • fearbobafett

                  Did you really need to bring up Griffith. Let’s turn back the clock on him, had a better olympics than the guy the Cubs had on thier radar all along and this chap didn’t need to change positions because some HOFer way already manning his position. I tink everyone in Chicago knows him, some guy named Robin Ventura.

                  And as far as vitters goes, he could be productive has hell at the MLB level but unless his career ends up topping that of Wieters i will still be pissed off we didn’t take him over money, when at that time we had a hole in the organization at that position.

            • art

              with all do respect, what makes Jim Callis, Kevin Goldstein, and Keith law experts? did they ever play ML ball? were they ever ML scouts? i believe most of us know talent as well as those guys.

              personally i like the eye test, that works for me. i thought Patterson would be good, i was wrong. i never thought Pie would be anything, i was right. even ML scouts are known to be wrong now and then. we as well as those 3 so called experts get our info from the ML scouts, present management, etc.

              my final judgement comes from the eye test not Jim Callis, Kevin Goldstein, and Keith Law.

        • Serious Cubs Fan

          I just think people need to realize that Vitters is playing in PCL league. It is extremely hitter friendly. The ball flies in those parks. Yes he is improving and improving defensively but he still sucks defensively even though hes improved. And .300 batting average isn’t that impressive in the PCL league. Its not bad but not great. Don’t get me wrong I hope he continues to improve but all top talent evaluators say his ceiling “mlb regular” at the very best. A lot of those top guys don’t think he will be even a decent mlb player. Thats just the way it is. He could prove them otherwise but the guy doesn’t walk ever, 23 on year is his career best and I know he just tied it but thats still piss poor and that doesn’t fit the Theo/Jed player model. I’m sure he’ll get a shot here in the next year or two but I’m not getting my hopes up because he hasn’t been overly impressive to this point.

          • Poopypants McGee

            I remember reading a few articles on Vitters and his minor league struggles. One of the consistant arguements was that Vitters had trouble because the pitching was so erratic. It didn’t allow him to get comfortable at the plate and establish his own strike zone. Hopefully the Cubs give Vitters a chance in September, and use Garza, Dempster, and whoever else they are considering trading to bring in pitching.

          • ThereWillBeCubs

            Vitters is still only 22. While he may never develop into a gold glove third baseman, it’s probably a little early for the gloom and doom forecast.

          • djriz

            My point…we don’t know what Vitters will be…could be Kevin Orie….could be Kevin Youkolis…don’t know.

            About the PCL….how about some fun facts.
            -of the 34 players hitting .300 or better only 2 are under 23. Rizzo and Vitters.
            -of the 34 players hitting .300 or better, only 6 are 24 or younger.
            -of those 6, 5 are repeating AAA. Vitters is the only 1st timer.
            -of the 15 players with HR =to or> Vitters, only 2 < 23 years old. Him and Rizzo.
            -of those 15, 13 are repeating AAA.

            To say that PCL stats would equate to MLB stats is wrong, but comparitve to other players in AAA, Vitters would have to be considered a top prospect, wouldn't he?

            • DocPeterWimsey

              Both Orie and Youk had great batting eyes in the minors; Vitters hasn’t had that.  So, he won’t be like them.  What we have to hope for is something from the Castro school of lots of hard contact and a BA that almost passes for a decent OBA.

              • djriz

                with the same fielding percentage (without castro’s range)
                with more hr’s and a significantly higher slugging percentage

                could buy that.

              • Kyle

                I would project Vitters for more power and a better batting eye than Castro, which he’ll need because he doesn’t have Castro’s elite hit tool.

                People seem to be willfully blind to improvements in Vitters’ discipline. It still isn’t a plus, but this isn’t the kid with the 3% BB rate either.

              • Luke D

                One thing you’re all forgetting here is that Vitters has already played in more games in AA and AAA than Kevin Orie ever did.

                A lesson in player development.

                • DocPeterWimsey

                  It was more a lesson in appreciating skills and sample sizes than about rushing players.  Orie’s ability to get on base was not appreciated by the Cubs FO, which appreciated only BA.  He did not do well in a short period of time, so they gave up on him.  Orie was very much a casualty of the Cubs’ old-school philosophies.

            • art

              did they send Rizzo back down? kidding.

  • DocPeterWimsey

    Ah, I remember that game well.  The Cubs had lit up Show (like they almost always did).  It was not the usual baseball brawl that looks more like the last dance at a prom: I remember Sutcliffe landing some doozies on Show.  The “best” part was when Dawson finally got up and then went after Show.  He literally was tossing aside Cubs and Padres.  Show ran!

    • art

      lol, now i remember.

  • North Side Irish

    I remember loving that Dawson’s teammates had his back like that. Show would’ve have been in real trouble if Sutcliffe had gotten to him.

    I also remember that it ended up on the cover of Sports Illustrated with a photo by Marcia Rules, who I worked with at the Courier News in Elgin. There were framed copies of that cover shot in our office.

    • TWC

      Damn that cover makes me angry. Almost as much as it did back in ’87.

  • Idaho Razorback

    Ahh, the Eric Show game. I will never forget it. I still have the Sports Illustrated. Later on Show announced he was gay, he has since passed.

    • DocPeterWimsey

      A gay John Birch Society member?  Well, that’s kind of unique….  (I suspect that the latter and not the former was why the Pads did not have Show’s back: he was not popular with most of his teammates.)

  • Cubsin

    The consensus seems to be that Vitters will be a solid MLB-average 3B. Baez and Candelario are expected to be even better. So I don’t see Castellanos as an exciting upgrade. Even a quick glance at the current MLB roster and our farm system should be enough to show that the Cubs primary needs are pitching, pitching and more pitching.

    Fortunately, Theo and Jed appear to see that too,

  • Jonski

    Do the Cubs have what it would take to get a kid like J. Upton from Diamondbacks or would is not worth the time???Seems to me if you put something together he becomes the right handed bat to split Rizzo,LaHair up that is if they are able to trade Soriono.

    • Carew

      Think they could start off the deal with Brett Jackson being the centerpiece and work from there?

  • Jeff1969

    I’m gonna start saying a rosary every night for Josh Vitters to come up & be a slightly better than average major league 3B so all the haters can just shut the heck up. For the clueless, go back & look into the past Baseball America Prospect guides. Just go back a year or two. Looking at those lists, it would be impossible to call any scout, or talent prognosticaters EXPERTS. They’re less accurate than weathermen. Get a clue. Prospects are just that, prospects. Possibilities. A guy like Castellanos has a 50/50 shot at best, and smart people wouldn’t put money on it. If the Tigers want to keep him so bad, then let them. Even if we kept everyone including Dempster & Soto, at least we’d know we had guys capable of making it in the majors.

    • DocPeterWimsey

      You are looking at it backwards.  Do a high proportion of highly touted prospects fail?  Absolutely.  Are most successful big leaguers former highly touted prospects?  Again, absolutely.  It’s not a coin flip, it’s a sieve: and while the prognosticators might not be great at identifying who will be an All Star in a few year’s time, they are quite good at identifying who will not be an All Star in a few year’s time.

      • djriz

        ‘It’s not a coin flip, it’s a sieve: and while the prognosticators might not be great at identifying who will be an All Star in a few year’s time, they are quite good at identifying who will not be an All Star in a few year’s time.”

        Explain please.

        I Think EVERY player currently in Single A (all teams) ball won’t make it. Bet I’ll be at least 80% correct.

        • DocPeterWimsey

          What is there to explain?  Most of the top prospects of today will not be tomorrow’s superstars.  Most of tomorrow’s superstars are top prospects today.  It’s a simple as that.

        • Patrick W.

          Think of it this way: Of the dozens of Men and Women who have run for President (including primaries) in the past 40 years, only 8 have become President. All 8 have run for President. (Gerald Ford fits both categories, he just did it backwards)

          You don’t have to become an All Star if you are a top prospect. If you become an All Star, chances are you were once a top prospect (notable exceptions being notable because they are so rare)

      • gutshot5820

        Doc, that is so simplistic, I can probably guess 95% of the time, who will not make it to the majors without ever seeing them play. I can also probably guess just by looking at stats and general information available, who will make it to the majors with some degree of accuracy. The difference of accuracy between my guesses and a professional scout’s opinion is probably a small percentage. They would ultimately be less wrong than me. But if you think that Major Leagues scouts are so smart and have a crystal ball, all you have to do is look at the Cubs, they spend millions upon millions in scouting and information and they couldn’t get it right for a decade. So anyone that thinks they have a definitive opinion that Vitter’s will not be a star has a right to their own opinion but that’s all it is. The numbers say he has a chance to progress, he is only 22 yrs old and improving everyday.

        • DocPeterWimsey

          It is simple, not simplistic.  What it comes down to is that people think that the statement “Nearly all star players were highly regarded prospects” is equivalent to “Nearly all highly regarded prospects become stars.”  This is a logical fallacy: future stars are a subset of current highly touted prospects; after all, there are many more highly touted prospects at any one time than there are going to be good players in 5 years time.

          Moreover, it appears very early.  Of drafted All Stars last decade, the plurality of them were drafted in the first round.  The majority were drafted in the first two rounds.  Now, most 1st and 2nd round picks do not play in the All Star game: but most of the All Stars were 1st or 2nd round picks.

          The Cubs failures are a separate issue.  Quite simply, the Cubs scouting has been very old school.  The valued “skills” that are not really skills (“clutch hitting”) and assumed that players would learn skills (e.g., batting eye, control) that turn out to be fundamental tools.  The reason why the Sox had so much better a farm system is that they valued true tools and were able to accurately identify them.  With the Sox brass now running the Cubs, we can expect to see a farm system more like what Boston had (has).

          • djriz

            ” Of drafted All Stars last decade, the plurality of them were drafted in the first round. The majority were drafted in the first two rounds. Now, most 1st and 2nd round picks do not play in the All Star game: but most of the All Stars were 1st or 2nd round picks.”

            Is this a guess, or do you have data to back it up?

            • DocPeterWimsey

              No, it was published on ESPN a couple of years back.  Stark or Law (or possibly Rob Neyer) put it together around draft time under the “why you should care given that you won’t see most of these guys for years if ever.”  It might also have been to emphasize why the Pujols and Piazzas of the world really are unusual.

          • Turn Two

            Which scouts said that they were searching for the “clutch hitting” tool? I think it is obvious the Cubs were looking for guys with high upside in power and did not pay much attention to obp, strike-out rates, etc. However, you are oversimplifying the matter. I don’t think the Cubs scouts can all be seen as “old-school” looking for “clutch hitting” your just trying to make a very complicated situation look black and white, by using generalizations. Which Cubs prospects were labeled “clutch-hitters” coming through the system, where did you get that information?

            • DoTheLindy

              Doc has a tendency to make things up to protect his argument. Then uses a circular argument to confuse the issue. My favorite is the use of small sample size when stats don’t agree with his argument, but uses the same stats when they do confirm his argument. You’ll get use to it.

              • DocPeterWimsey

                The next time I do anything like that will be the first.   My arguments rely purely on stats and logic.

              • Drew7

                Your lack of understanding may cause the appearance of make-believe, but I’ve never seen an example of your accusation. Do us a favor and cite an example next time you question a guys’ integrity.

              • Njriv

                This wreaks of BetterNews

                • TWC


            • DocPeterWimsey

              The players were not labelled “clutch” in the minor leagues: how guys performed in the “clutch” in HS or college was a criterion that the Cubs organization stressed at draft time. They viewed it as an aspect of character, and they would always empahsize it when putting out the little PR bits.

              This was another of Hendry’s big failings.  In his heart of hearts, he truly believed that it was BAwRiSP that controlled how many rans a team scored, not the number of PAswRiSP.  However, how a guy does one year predicts how well he’ll do the next just as well as a coin-flip does.

              • Turn Two

                I understand what your argument is, I was wondering what examples your basing it on?

        • Pat

          Small percentages make a huge difference over large samples. Lets say we have one guy with a five percent chance of making the majors, and another with an eight percent chance of making it. You could say, no big deal, they’re both over ninety percent to fail. But the truth is one of those guys is sixty percent more likely to make it than the other, which is a huge difference.

          For every Adam Dunn who can succeed at the big league level with an atrocious strikeout rate there are hundreds of players every year who fail for a similar reason.

          Being bad at certain areas of the game is not a guarantee a player won’t make it, but it can lower the probability of success to a huge degree.

          • DocPeterWimsey

            And that is where the Cubs “future all star team” of 10 years ago went.  With the exception of Choi, the position players had poor pitch recognition.  Hendry’s belief was that players learned this over time; however, history says otherwise, and this flaw caused the prospects to flounder in AAA or MLB.  SImilarly, the pitchers typically had live arms but lousy control.  Hendry’s belief was that this would improve markedly over time.  Either it didn’t, or the pitchers ran up such huge pitch counts that they flamed out young.  Either way, being bad at particular aspects of the game wound up hurting them.

            (In short, Hendry and his scouts simply could not see “walks” as a fundamental tool issue for either batters or pitchers.)

  • Njriv

    At the rate Rizzo is going we can probably trade him and get some legit prospects, and then trade those guys for MORE prospects and so on and so on, It would be like prospect trafficking.

    • Carew

      so we should become the A’s?

      • Njriv

        Haha clearly im joking

    • Josh

      Ok Billy Beane. Eventually you need to compete. And that’s clearly not working in Oakland. Rizzo has the potential to be a cornerstone piece for this franchise and short of a couple top 3 prospects in the Orioles system or Jays (Which would never happen) he should be untouchable

      • Njriv

        No one is untouchable! Sorry I was joking I’m just doing my David Kaplan impression.

    • Serious Cubs Fan

      Njriv: Thats possibly the stupidest thing you could have said. You should be cardinals GM.

      • Njriv

        Easy man I was just messing.

        • Serious Cubs Fan

          Ya my bad man, bad joke.

  • auggie1955

    Yeah, at the time Eric Show was my most hated MLB player. He paid the price though having OD’d on drugs a few years after he retired at the age of 37.

    Another Padre I hated was Alan Wiggins from the 84 team. He also died young at the age of 32 from AIDS in 1991. It is believed that he became infected with AIDS through his drug usage.

  • Cub Gone Wild

    I LMAO when read that people trust these so called talent evaluators like Law etc. They all git jobs working in baseball and every GM in the game calls them
    Fir advice. Ya right… if you believe anything that comes oyt of their biaszd mouths then you are just flipping srupid. Thet make a livi.g off of srupid people who follow them. Sorry i have no patience for people who fall the bullshit reporting these guys put out.

    • @cubsfantroy

      Sorry, I laughed at this.

    • Pat

      I enjoy reading them. But then, I’m always open to opinions that may differ from my own. Or maybe it’s their ability to make less than fifteen spelling/grammatical errors per paragraph.

      Of course, it’s possible I’m just srupid.

  • True(ly) Blue

    I loved the comment about trading Rizzo for prospects. This echos what I said a couple of weeks ago. The vast majority of SUPER prospects don’t make to the bigs and if they do most aren’t super stars. Right now The Riz looks like he could be a super star but I hate to commit too early (as per Lahair). Anyway I’m glad that the poster added to his comment that he was kidding. Had he not I would have had to find a super bug to send to his computer and put him out of his misery.
    I my humble opinion one (that’s 1) very good player is worth 2 or 3 prospects. I can understand trading Dempster, DeJesus and Johnson ( all of whom who I like very much for both performance and professional attributes), Soto, Baker, Mather, LaHair, et al but trading young, productive players for prospects is like looking for fool’s gold. Keep the gold (silver?) that you have, please!

    • DocPeterWimsey

      “The vast majority of SUPER prospects don’t make to the bigs and if they do most aren’t super stars.” That’s actually not true.  A third of the first round picks make MLB and half of the 2nd round picks make MLB.  It drops to one third for guys drafted 3-5 and is down to one fifth in subsequent rounds.

      So, inexact though it is, clearly the scouts and FOs are doing a good job of sorting the prospects out initially, and the highly ranked ones are the ones reaching MLB.  (You can get more exact data at FanGraphs, BleacherReport, etc.)

      Now, I realize that Cubs fans tend to think that it’s random because so many high round Cub draft picks never amount to anything.  However, the Cubs obviously have been a very poorly run organization in this regard, given the dearth of Cub farm hands in MLB.

  • DoTheLindy

    Drew7-as per your request.

    Would anyone like to factcheck @DocPeterWimsey on this? Someone with no bias.

    Go to and lets say pick any three drafts, count the number of picks in the first round, let’s say supplemental 1 is first round and then count the players who have been major leaguers. Over those three drafts, what percentage of first rounders make it? To be fair, pick drafts from 2005/6 and earlier.

    Repeat for second rounders.

    Compare to the 1/3 first rounders and 1/2 seconders make it hypothesis.


    • MichiganGoat

      Um this is what YOU should do, and then report back to us.

      • Drew7

        Didnt take him very long to come slithering back, did it?

        • MichiganGoat

          Not ready to go there yet, it takes a couple days of this before I’m certain if IT has returned.

          • Brett

            I’m pretty sure it is not.

      • DoTheLindy


        2004 Draft
        41 1st round picks
        15 MLB players
        37% success rate
        30 2nd round picks
        5 MLB players
        17% success rate

        2005 draft
        48 1st rounders
        19 MLBers
        40% success rate
        30 2nd rounders
        8 MLBers
        27% rate

        2006 Draft
        44 1st round picks
        18 MLBers
        41% success
        30 2nd round picks
        4 MLBers
        14% success rate

        In total:
        133 1st round picks, 52 MLBers @ 39% success.
        90 2nd round picks, 18MLBers @ 20% success.

        Now it seems there was some confusion, DocPeterWimsey says he had a typo, I know I had a typo, so if I misinterpreted what he meant, I’m sorry. If he meant 2/3 of 1st rounders make it, and 1/2 of 2nd rounders make it, then these 3 drafts seem to refute those facts. You can be the judges.

        By the way….it IS back.

        • DocPeterWimsey

          If you go to Baseball Reference (e.g.,, you can quickly tally the first round picks who made MLB. Basically, if the name is a link, then they made it. (The link is to MLB stats).

          Going through a few years in the ’90’s, it seems like 2/3rds is about correct. Interestingly, it’s closer to 75% for the “true” first round: the supplementals seem to have fared less well….

        • DocPeterWimsey

          Your numbers are way off according to
          2004: 33 of 44 have played in MLB
          2005: 36 of 48
          2006: 29 of 44.

          So, the 2/3rds seems to be an underestimate for those years.

          • MichiganGoat

            IT always has a problem with math and facts, Doc save yourself and ignore BetterJoeFinchLindy.

        • Pat

          I think you are looking at guys who are still in the league, rather than those who made it at all.

          Here are two statements that may seem incongruous, but they are not. (made up numbers to illustrate a point)

          The expectations for a team who finishes a season with 100 more runs scored than allowed is 12 games over 500.

          The odds of a team who finishes the season with 100 more runs scored than allowed ending up exactly 12 games over 500 are less than 5%.

          The reality is that smaller samples will always have larger fluctuations. So looking at a couple of specific years isn’t necessarily representative.

          • DocPeterWimsey

            Right, in this case, the height of the probability curve for expected wins peaks at 0.05 at 87 wins; however, the hump will encompass several games, and the tails will show that we expect (very infrequently) a team with a RD of 100 to win 100 games.

            In this case, we are looking at a likelihood curve: that is, how probable are the data given hypotheses of X% successes. Given Bleacher Report, those should peak at 67% for the first round. However, perusing Baseball Reference, it looks like it should be closer to 70+%.

            • Pat

              Is it really 87-75? Not to toot my own horn, but if that’s the case that was some pretty good half in the bag, back of the napkin math.

        • MichiganGoat

          And IT will be gone again soon. Please everyone ignore IT.

    • DocPeterWimsey

      It’s 2/3rds of the first round makes MLB, not 1/3rd. (A typo on my part.) Here’s a rounded off summary:

    • Scotti

      The OP referenced “SUPER prospects” whereas doc referenced first round, etc. picks. Doc did say that 2/3 of first rounders do NOT make the majors and he is correct. As the OP suggest, however, most of that is just a guy getting his feet wet. Very few first round picks ever make an overall positive contribution to MLB and FAR fewer become stars.

      FWIW, I have seen no indication that the Cubs are outside the norm interms of seeing their first round picks develop into “superstars”… Joe Carter, Pameiro, Wood, Prior… That’s off the top of my head but seems about representative. Very few first rounders become stars. Oh, I forgot Tyler Colvin! 😉

      • DocPeterWimsey

        Actually, I mistyped: either I meant to write “1/3rd do not make it” or I forgot to put in a 2. And you are correct that most of them do not amount to much. However, a large proportion of the guys who do amount to much are first round picks. Of course, that makes sense even if “stars” are uniformly drawn from the guys who make MLB, then given Bleacher Report’s basic numbers, you’d expect about 25% of players to be first rounders. (Their basic numbers suggest about a 25% decrease in probability of making MLB per round.) So, about 25% of the stars would be first rounders, at least among drafted players. However, my memory is that a greater proportion of the All-Stars are first round picks, or were in the aughts.

        I would add that I do not remember how they calculated this; for example, ARod and Jeter both were in every All-Star Game in the aughts. So, is that 2 of the X players who were first round picks, or 20 of the 300 players who were first round picks?

      • Kyle

        We had a really bad run from 1999 through 2005, where we made nine first-round picks and got only a few years of Mark Prior out of them.

        • Scotti

          Poor draft success but, in terms of returning star power from the first round, one in nine is well ahead of the curve. It sure would have been nice to get more out of the Brownlie draft, though…

          • Bric

            A quick look at two of the Cubs’ rivals’ drafting in the same ten year span has produced this:
            Brewers- Ben Sheets, Prince Fielder, Rickie Weeks, Ryan Bruan, Matt LaPorta, Brett Lawrie.
            Reds- Homer Bailey, Jay Bruce, Drew Stubbs, Yonder Alonso, Mike Leake, Yasmani Grandal.

            One no-brainer of a pick at number two overall, along with “big names” Ben Christiansen, Bobby Brownlie, Mark Pawalek, Haydon Simpson, Ryan Harvey, and Josh Vitters isn’t much to be proud of. Colvin and Cashner are on the plus side but no longer with the team. Biaz and Almora too soon to tell

            In any case I wouldn’t exactly call that “ahead of the curve”.

  • ottoCub

    Not sure if this has been posted? Just left the the I-Cubs game, and Chris Rusin was a very late scratch to start the game. Any news (rumors) about why?

  • MichCubFan

    As a 22 year old having success in triple-A, Vitters is a pretty good prospect. I like how well he seems to have adapted to a better hitting approach.

    The old FO let guys swing away and get themelves out too much, but now we are finally teaching guys the right things.

    Don’t forget about the development part of scouting and development.

  • EvenBetterNewsV2.0

    My god, looking through the posts someone needs to tell these owners to fire all of the GMs. Clearly we have better people here at Bleachernation. The GMs are all idiots. I am glad to be able to join in the presence of such brilliant men. Hell, if only the Tribune hired someone here we wouldn’t have to worry about a World Series draught. We would be working on our 8th WS in a row. Damn. Another reason for me to be down on the Cubs… I will write Tom Rickett at once and let him know we need to fire Hoyer/Epstein and bring in someone from here. This man will be able to turn around the team as of 7/9, and we will win the WS this year. We have no need to rebuild. Soriano will win the Triple Crown under the tutelage of whomever gets hired. Volstad will win the Cy Young. Campana will bring back 4 top 100 players in a trade. Man… I can’t wait!!! Ah, that was fun.

    • someday…2015?

      Haha I almost peed my pants when I read Volstad will win the CY young.

      • EvenBetterNewsV2.0

        It was down to that and their first 40th round pick. I went with the longshot in Volstad.