Chicago Cubs 2016 NL Central Championship Gear

I leave for Chicago later this morning, and I’ll be at the game tomorrow with some friends from the long-standing Cubs message board, Sons of Ivy. Posting should be normal, but my usual Chicago trip caveat applies: I might be in the comments less, and on Twitter/Facebook less, than usual.

  • On Tuesday, Ian Stewart had “successful” wrist surgery. The surgery was partly exploratory, so hopefully that means they actually found, and were able to correct, the problem. Obviously there’s no time table yet for a return, which Stewart hopes will be late this season. I’m sure the Cubs hope that, too, given that they’ll have a tender decision (like, tender-a-contract, not soft and sweet) to make on Stewart this Winter. He’s arbitration-eligible for the third time in 2013 (out of four times total), but the Cubs may not want to commit $2 to $2.5 million to Stewart if they haven’t seen him in game action looking healthy, and hopefully, improved.
  • Keith Law released his midseason top 50 prospect ranking, and the Cubs landed three on there – Javier Baez at 35, Albert Almora at 47, and Jorge Soler at 50. At first, you might see it as a negative that, in a league of 30 teams, the Cubs’ top prospect doesn’t show up until number 35, but there are two things to consider: (1) Anthony Rizzo easily would have been in the top 20 if he’d still been eligible (and, as a 22-year-old who just got called up, he’s a lot more like a prospect than an established player); and (2) don’t think of it as one in the top 35, think of it as three in the top 50. Do the math on that, and you see that teams are expected to have just 1.67 prospects in the top 50. The Cubs have almost twice that amount.

  • Patrick Mooney talks to Darwin Barney about his performance this year, about trade rumors, and about the team’s overall results. Barney is a good interview, that much is clear.
  • The Cubs are likely to be busy in the next few weeks, says Carrie Muskat, starting with the possible departure of Ryan Dempster, who starts at Wrigley Field tomorrow. Paul Sullivan similarly talks about the changes expected on the horizon. There hasn’t been a Cubs game in five days, so this is to be expected.
  • A write-up on former first round pick Hayden Simpson, which will probably bum you out as much as it makes you hopeful. I still wish this guy could find a way to succeed, not only for the Cubs, but for himself.

  • The Onion slays the Cubs once again …
  • The MLBullets at BCB look at Justin Upton’s response to trade rumors.

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