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My first fantasy football draft of the season is later today (which could, by the way, delay the EBS) and the pressure is on – I’ve won the league two years in a row, and it always starts with the draft.

  • Tyler Colvin is having a great year with the Rockies after being traded from the Cubs, and in discussing that success, he offered something telling about the previous regime in Chicago. “When I got here [to Colorado] there was good communication from the beginning,” Colvin said, according to Bruce Levine. “In the past, the program changed for me. Here I am not being pulled back and forth.” In case you need it made even more explicit than that, Colvin is saying the Rockies have done right by him, whereas the Cubs yanked him around. You’ll recall that, while in Chicago, Colvin seemed to be the rope in a tug-o-war between the front office, who seemed to think highly of him, and the manager (first Lou Piniella, then moreso Mike Quade), who did not. Thus, he frequently came up to the big club only to play inconsistently. His bat impalement injury didn’t help things, forcing him to rest, rather than work out, before the 2011 season. But the Cubs did him no favors – well, at least not until the new front office dealt him to the Rockies.
  • So, that crazy Red Sox/Dodgers deal is apparently done, and reports have the Dodgers taking on some 95% of the money owed to Adrian Gonzalez, Carl Crawford, and Josh Beckett, while simultaneously giving up Rubby De La Rosa and Allen Webster, a couple of top young arms. What can you say? Well, I suppose I said most of it last night, but if Gary Busey isn’t running the Dodgers, then I don’t know what’s what.
  • Brooks Raley is going to start today, but he actually isn’t currently on the 25-man roster after that doubleheader roster dance the Cubs did over the past two weeks. Best guess is that someone like Alberto Cabrera will head back to Iowa for the next week, and will be back when rosters expand in September. (UPDATE: Ok, so it’s going to be Chris Rusin going down for Raley, which, like, duh. I’d feel more dopey about it, but the 25-man roster currently lists no Chris Rusin on it (nor Brooks Raley), and I didn’t think the Cubs would be going with 13 pitchers. But they are. Which is dumb.)
  • Friend of the program Sahadev Sharma writes that Brett Jackson has a reason to smile after going deep yesterday, and that Jeff Samardzija pulled out a great start after a shaky beginning yesterday, and could become a Cubs building block.
  • Speaking of Samardzija, I still believe the Cubs will shut him down at some point before the end of the season, but Dale Sveum says, right now, that isn’t in the cards. “He’s fine,” Sveum said before Friday’s game. “We’ll make those decisions, but right now – like I said a week ago – all of his tests came back with flying colors. Right now, we’re on the thought of making it all the way through.” I want Samardzija to feel good and strong about his season, but I just don’t see much upside in letting him go 200 innings after throwing just 80-some last year. I see only downside. Scary, scary downside, which might not manifest itself until midseason 2013.
  • John at Cubs Den interviewed Jim Callis about the Cubs’ system, and there were some interesting nuggets, but the key takeaway is what we already believe to be true: the Cubs’ best/most impactful prospects are super young.
  • The Cubs’ uniforms were selected as the fourth best in sports (second best in baseball, behind the Cardinals; the Bears were second overall) by some ESPN panel or something, presumably taking a break from Tebow’s birthday celebration. I mean, obviously I like the Cubs’ unis, but are they really the fourth best in all of sports? Is that even a question really worth asking? Is this obviously a stupid gimmick designed to get folks debating things that are inherently unknowable?
  • Crockett

    ESPN hates us.

  • Mat B

    It’s to get people buying them.

  • http://deleted Mr. Gonzo

    I’ve also got my fantasy football draft today. What pick are you, Brett? Good luck!

    “May the Gonzo be with you.” – Hunter S. Kenobi

    Who do you think has the best unis in sports? I’ve always liked the Blue Jays, Cubs, Expos, Packers, Bears, Celtics and (now) Thunder.

  • Tim

    the blackhawks have to be number 1

    • JoeyCollins

      I’ve always thought the BHawks were far and away the best pro jersey, but that poll had them somewhere around 50. They ripped the red sweater for being too red? or something? After i saw that i knew this poll was a joke.

      • Bric

        Totally agree. The fact that the team’s jersey is the only one I can think of that features the image of a real war hero along with the fact that the team is named after a military unit which was named for that man should put them at the top out of sheer originality. Besides that, it’s a really cool image and jersey. What other team has stone tomahawk hockey sticks?

    • Brandon

      Without a doubt, there is not even a close second to the blackhawks jersey!!

      • Frank

        No–nothing even close.

    • Doug

      Agreed. I do think the Cubs, Bulls and Bears all deserve top 10 consideration though.

  • mark

    “I want Samardzija to feel good and strong about his season, but I just don’t see much upside in letting him go 200 innings after throwing just 80-some last year. I see only downside. Scary, scary downside, which might not manifest itself until midseason 2013.”

    And the problem with overuse injuries is you don’t know you have a problem until it’s too late. The Cubs have been pretty careful this year, looking after their players. It’d be shame if they try to force Samardzija’s future too soon.

  • LouCub

    Brett, granted he was probably already pulled back, do you think th Cubs were the team who put the claim in on Justin Upton?

    • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

      I doubt it, just based on probabilities, but it wouldn’t surprise me at all.

  • Christian

    Hey Brett, in other matters, the Cubs FO has been talking about changing the culture over all. I suggest they change some of the cubs logos. Specially the cub itself. Maybe something that looks a little agressive if you want to say, like the 1908 mascot. It doesn’t look as cute as the actual logo. Maybe a cub showing his paws like going after his pray, something like that. And I think they should bring back the mascot. It all would make things fun. What do you think?

    • Christian

      I tried to put a link of a picture of the 1908 cubs with the mascot. Dont know why it didnt appeard. Just look it up. It is worth it. Got it framed and hanging in my guestroom baseball gallery.

    • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

      I think if there was a mascot at Wrigley, the old-timers would revolt and eat him.

      • Christian

        lol!

    • Jim

      Nah, just bring back Marla Collins! :)

      • Tommy

        OHHH, good call Jim!

    • Ash

      If there was a time machine I think I would go back to the beginning of this year and change the logo to a bear cub sitting with a beehive stuck on his head.

      • Ogyu

        If only the cubs were owned by Disney, the logo could be Winnie the Pooh with his fat rear end stuck in a rabbit hole.

        • Crazyhorse

          Boy ! What a great laugh! Thankyou!

  • Christian

    [img]http://worldseriesdreaming.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/10/1908_cubs_foraslanandvolstate.jpg[/img]

    • http://www.obstructedview.net Aisle 424

      It looks like a giant rat.

      • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

        Whatever it is, it’s scary as hell.

        • Frank

          Don’t think the old-timers would eat that mascot!

      • Ogyu

        It could lead an uprising of the Wrigley rats!

    • Doug Dascenzo

      That is terrifying. It looks like something out of “The Shining”.

      • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

        That scene! When she runs up the stairs and looks in the room! You know what I’m talking about …

  • Frank

    Brett,
    Don’t you really think ESPN should cover Tebow and the Jets even more than they do now? I’m about to send ESPN an email asking them to remove their lips off Tebow and the Jets asses and cover something else. Espn doesn’t realize that nobody gives a flying monkey turd about New York other than people that live in New York or ESPN.

  • Cubs1967

    you think the cubs could not of been contenders this year and still rebuilt?
    look at this team and you decide.

    ss-castro
    rf-colvin
    1b-rizzo
    3b-ramirez
    cf-cespedes
    lf-soriano
    c-castillo
    2b-barney

    garza-demp-maholm-smardz-e jackson
    marmol-marshall-camp-russell-rest of junk pen-mix/match

    reed-baker-clevenger-valbuena

    dropping dejesus at 4.5M, stewart at 2.5M, wood at 500K saves 7M. we add 6M this year for aram-9M for cespedes-7M for jackson. payroll around 125M.
    aram is done in 3 yrs. baez could be ready then. we hope.
    cesepdes will be for 4 yrs-but good trade bait.

    in essences NO long term deals that are probihibitve. funny how the a’s and rays can contend. red sox can unload 200M plus contracts. BUT theo/jed can’t contend or unload Sori of only 40M.

    yeah…………2016………..WTF…….we are we waiting-tanking-again?

    • Flashfire

      It’s essentially the same lineup. Ramirez, as usual, was ice cold to start the year. So you’re saying that Cespedes bat, alone, would have made us a contender. (Yes, i know, you have Tyler Colvin in there. Look at his away-from-Coors numbers, because those are the ones we would have had.) You’re getting rid of one of the best players on the team (DeJesus) to do that, too. I know Cespedes is good and all, but I’m pretty sure he doesn’t come close to a 35 WAR.

      • DocPeterWimsey

        Cubs1967 lineup would probably have the Cubs around zero in net HR and net doubles+triples. So, that brings the Cubs close to 0.500 in two key performance areas. However, the Cubs have given up 120 more walks than they’ve drawn. This lineup does not fix that. So, although the Cubs would be in the running for 90 loses instead of being in the running for 80 loses.

      • Frank

        It’s also debatable whether Rizzo would have had the same success had he been brought up earlier than he was. As it is, the league is adjusting and we still have to see how well he adjusts to that. Yes, LaHair was good early (very early), but the point still stands–Rizzo may not have been ready and the team would’ve given up some future control.

    • Drew7

      Contenders for 4th-place in the division, and essentially spending $75 mil more to get a worse draft pick.

      • Tommy

        Drew7 nailed it. That’s exactly what that lineup would have brought us.

    • MikeL

      You bash the front office for not being able to trade Soriano….but then conveniently leave out the fact that they did indeed trade Soriano but Alfonso vetoed it–nice. You also leave out the fact that any player on the Red Sox who had a no-trade clause waived it to complete the trade to the Dodgers.

      • JoeX2288

        Love how Cheringon, with one swipe of the pen, undoing a vast amount of damage by the Great Theo Epstein, the Saber geek who wouldn’t know a baseball player if one bopped him on the head with a bat.

        The great Theo also had a 1st round hitting bust in 2006, and another soon-to-be bust from the 2010 1st round.

        He inherited a winning team when Boston hired him as the also-ran against Billy Beane, who knew better at the time to stay put in Oakland.

        Epstein has done nothing but throw money against the wall to se what sticks, and he also surrounds himself with great baseball people who have done miracles……..lol with San Diego………..???????

        Cherington was also keen enough to steal away two of the Cubs most electric arms for the silly compensation of a non-player suit from the Ivy League. In other words, you can head to the Ivy and choose one of several thousand computer GEEKS to run stats and make baseball decisions via a computer program, but you WON’T find ANY guys throwing 98-100 mph on those campuses.

        • Carew

          You do realize Carpenter went down for the entire year right? and who was the other pitcher? all i know of is an A pitcher…

          Are you Cubs1967 just with a different name?

        • DocPeterWimsey

          The great Theo also got more WAR from his draft picks than any other MLB GM over his tenure.

          As for the supposed “mess,” the Sox have been completely nuked with injuries all season. Yet they still field a team that plays 0.500 ball in the AL East. (Note that the two best teams in that division, NY & TB, also are run by stats geeks!) The Cubs that Hendry left would have needed everything to go right to have a 0.500 team this year.

          If that’s a mess, then I hope we get one like that here.

        • Tommy

          Say whatever you want about Theo Epstein, but the fact still remains – the Red Sox hadn’t won a World Series in 86 years and that streak finally ended while Theo was in charge.

          Give him credit for the bad if you will, but you can’t discard the good and say he had nothing to do with it at the same time.

          • DocPeterWimsey

            In many ways, it was Theo ending the 3 year losing streak that was more impressive! I mean, no Sox fan should have to go through college without a WS…… (Although that looks like it will happen this year!)

          • MikeL

            LMAO!!! These trolls are hilarious! They leave out several facts because they know if they were actually presented with the facts about Theo’s tenure in Boston, their argument would be exposed as the total piece of garbage that it is. I am not saying Theo should not be criticized for some moves in Boston, but most anti-Theo arguments are totally idiotic.

            • Cubs1967

              why don’t you explain the facts:
              lugo
              dice-K
              crawford
              lackey
              2 of the red sox biggest HR hitters were big time roiders: manny and d ortiz
              theo was given a 93 win team
              he had a 175M payroll
              there were vets in the clubhouse to control the mess theo had before he got there: varitek-damon-etc

              yeah-hiliarious……….facts: theo’as last 3 teams did not make the playoffs.
              the red sox just gutted a big bunch of theo’s mess
              theo has NEVER started from scratch
              theo’s last beantown team make baseball history of 125 yrs plus; the choked!

              what;s hilarious is cubs fans letting this team tank until 2016 when the “Kids” will be ready-baez-almora-soler-etc

              have some balls; cubs are not a expansion team. time for ricketts to grow some!

              • The Show

                Cubs1967 how does it feel that no matter how much you whine, bitch and moan about the Cubs rebuilding process and Theo’s decisions they aren’t going to change? You constantly complaining about basically everything that Theo does is not going to make a difference. It must suck knowing that no matter how much you complain, Theo isn’t going to get fired or the Cubs aren’t going to get the top tier FA’s and there is NOTHING you can do to change that.Your only option is to sit back and watch, just like the rest of us, because quite frankly, we are all tired of your complaints. If you are not willing to do so, there is a team on the South Side of Chicago that’s in first place that’s begging for fan support.

                • baldtaxguy

                  Yes, good question. What motivates you to point out only the negative outcomes of Theo’s decisions? If you don’t support the owner’s decision to hire Theo and fire Hendry, its probably best to find a team with an ownership and GM that you can identify with and support. Or could it be that you enjoy this?

              • Tommy

                Fair question – we’ll answer those as soon as you answer one for us: 2 World Series rings.

              • Flashfire

                The 2007 team was radically different — and largely Theo’s. Next batter.

              • MikeL

                HAHAHAHAHA! Cubs1967, that latest rant was pathetic. You mention four players…..just so you know there are 25 men on a roster, thought I might teach you a little something about ere.ball there. Manny is considered by many to be one of the greatest right handed hitters of all time, and Ortiz was picked up off of the scrap heap. How did that signing of Curt Schilling work out for the Red Sox? Mike Lowell?

                Jay Ellsbury–drafted by Theo—MVP calibar player. Dustin Pedroia–former MVP. Hanley Ramirez of the Dodgers? Drafted and developed by the Red Sox under Theo Epstien. Lowrie of the Astros who was having a great year on an awful team–drafted and developed by the Red Sox while Theo was still there.

                The Red Sox haven’t didn’t make the playoffs from 2009-2011? How many times did the Cubs make the playoffs during the same stretch? Can you tell me how many times the Red Sox missed the playoffs from 2003-2008? How many times did the Cubs make it? From 2003-2011 how many championships did the Red Sox have? How many did the Cubs have during that same stretch. Once again, you like to cherry pick facts.

                EVERY GM is going to miss on draft picks and free agent signings. Stop pointing out of all of Theo’s failures and ignoring his successes, because that is what you are doing.

              • notcubbiewubbie

                GO JIM HENDRY GO BROUGHT TO U BY CUBS 1967

              • https://twitter.com/cubsfantroy @cubsfantroy

                If the Cubs had not traded Sean Marshall for Travis Wood and Dave Sappelt, they would be the favorites to win the World Series this year. That one trade made the Cubs terrible this year.

                • Njriv

                  If someone actually said that and was serious about it, they deserve to be punched in the third eye.

        • Frank

          Yes, those two World Series rings show just how incompetent he is. The Cubs have had winning teams in the past as well, but haven’t been even able to get into the World Series for nearly 70 years. There is also evidence that Epstein did not want to make some of those signings but was overruled by Lucchino–something you conveniently ignore. Does Epstein always make the right decisions? Absolutely not–no one does. But to overlook what he did accomplish, saying “he wouldn’t know a baseball player if one bopped him on the head with a bat” is not only unfair, but doesn’t show a great deal of fairness, knowledge, analytic thought, or intelligence on your part.

          • DocPeterWimsey

            The other problem is that the “scrappy” crowd thinks that the Sox (supposedly) bad clubhouse chemistry is stopping them from winning. The reality, what problems there are (and it almost certainly is mostly fabricated from the Boston Sports Media) come from losing and Bobby V.

            • calicubsfan007

              @Doc: ESPN definetly doesn’t help with that common mistake. I see them all the time talking about the chemistry and how that is the main reason why the Sox suck this year. I wouldn’t blame Bobby V. for the “chemistry” belief as much though. This theory existed last year with Francona in charge. It really was started, and spread, by the media.

              • DocPeterWimsey

                Isn’t ESPN just an alliance between the NY & Boston sports medias?

                • calicubsfan007

                  @Doc: Heh, good point. (=

            • Frank

              If I remember correctly, the Oakland As, when they had those consecutive World Series victories, were also having clubhouse brawls relatively often–great chemistry there!

              • DocPeterWimsey

                Lou Piniella talked about how bad the chemistry was on the late 1970’s Yankee teams, yet they still won. Of course, the on-again, off-again manager (Billy Martin) was a clubhouse cancer himself who basically boasted of keeping the clubhouse divided so that it could not unite against him! And then there was George Steinbrenner: he was less a clubhouse cancer than some sort of clubhouse bubonic plague….

                The Big Red Machine did not have the best of clubhouse dynamics (Pete Rose was a difficult guy with whom to get along). The Ruth-Gehrig Yankees were split between Ruth’s team and Gehrig’s team (Ruth and Gehrig were not on speaking terms after Ruth complained about Gehrig’s mother: Gehrig even turned his back on Ruth when the Babe would cross the plate after HR). The 1980’s Mets and (to a lesser degree) the 1980’s Cardinals were renowned for clubhouse spats.

                Upshot? What happens in the clubhouse has little effect on what happens on the field.

          • Crazyhorse

            Curious, why would the media want to fabricate someones bad baseball descions? I think just writing about it- is what is happening. Theo Epstien is a baseball person . He makes mistakes . Its the fans that make him bigger. So when someone points out the faults he has made- some of you go nuts. But he does make some bad descions. Luckily for Boston it seems like they can move some of that junk. Esptein true ability is to see good mlb talent in young players Epstein is going to make mistakes – that is a given . Only time will tell

            • DocPeterWimsey

              The media is not fabricating bad decisions. What they are essentially fabricating is that the social dynamics in the Sox clubhouse are causing the team to lose. That’s a pure fairy tale.

              And that gets back to Theo’s decisions. One of the claims is that he got “bad chemistry” guys, who are preventing the Sox from winning. However, the Sox chemistry was pretty much the same (think “Animal House”) in good years and bad years. Moreover, their “bad years” were always pretty good: and when the players were upset, it was because they were losing. In other words, surly attitude was the cart and losing was the horse, not the other way around.

              Most of Theo’s moves made tactical sense at the time. A few of them did not work. Lackey, for example, simply did not pitch well for the Sox. Crawford was hurt. Cameron was acquired for great range to accompany 20 HR: but the first thing he did with his great range was collide with Elsbury and take both out for the entire season. (Seriously, it was on the first or second game, I think!)

              And this is why baseball is different from chess. The pieces have probabilistic traits rather than deterministic ones, and sometimes that rook or queen plays more like a pawn, or simply wanders off of the board.

  • Curt

    I really hope rebuilding is the right way to win bc it really sucks watching the dodgers just spend and spend, just bc they owners hve deep pockets, does make u wonder.

    • Sircub

      I do NOT envy Dodgers fans right now.

      • The Dude Abides

        Why?

        • Frank

          To me, much depends on two things: 1) whether the Dodgers are able to win right now, and 2) how long they are willing and able to spend at this rate. If they’re unable to win right now, they’ve just signed a lot of players whose skills will be eroding quickly, and taken on huge contracts to do it–very similar to what the Cubs did when Zell spent up a storm to build assets for the sake of a later sale. If they are willing to spend like this continually, as say, the Yankees do, then they might be able to buy themselves some titles. If they’re not willing to keep spending at this rate, then they’ll have taken a shot and missed, again, much like the Cubs did.

    • Frank

      Wasn’t that the strategy that got us the Soriano, Bradley, and Fukudome contracts . . .

  • August

    The 1908 Cub mascot is less “Cub” and more “I was a Teenage Werewolf.”. Someone refresh my memory; what was the reasoning in replacing DJ with Darwin Barney at 2nd and Colvin with LaHare in the outfield? I don’t think I would have pulled the trigger on that trade, regardless of what upside Stewart had. 3rd could still have been a platoon until Vitters was ready.

    • DocPeterWimsey

      Someone refresh my memory; what was the reasoning in replacing DJ with Darwin Barney at 2nd and Colvin with LaHare in the outfield?

      Colvin is incapable of getting on base (he’s Jeff Franceour from the left side), which is why the Cubs were not interested in retaining him. His 0.273/0.326/0.503 line with 6 HR since June game is pretty pedestrian. (A lot of his HR and extra base hits in the first half probably would have been outs in Wrigley, too.)

      DJ LeMahieu is viewed by most as a utility infielder. Even on a team as dreadful as the Rox (and they are truly bad this year), he’s had only 125 plate appearances. He did bat 0.300+ in the minors, but his OBP was unexceptional and his power exceptionally lacking: Barney has more power! So, that gives you less power, less fielding and perhaps slightly better contact skills than Barney.

      • DocPeterWimsey

        Oh, and lycanthropy was still a real problem in 1908, I’m sure……

    • Tommy

      I think trading an OF and a utility IF for a 3B and a pitching prospect had something to do with it, as well.

      I can only guess as to the reasoning used, but I imagine they didn’t see Colvin as a long term part of the future of the Cub’s OF and decided to take a chance on a 3rd baseman who hadn’t really lived up to his potential to date.

      Position players are typically harder to come by than good outfielders, and let’s be honest, as well as Colvin has played this year we’re still looking for better numbers when guys like Soler, Almora, Szczur, Jackson start getting acclimated to the MLB.

      I’ll give you this much though – at this point in time, it looks like it was a bad trade for the Cubs. But then, hindsight is 20/20. I still say in the long run, we didn’t really give up anything that was important to our long term plans. 10 years from now, nobody will remember who Tyler Colvin or DJ LeMahieu are (no offense to those guys, meant).

      • Frank

        I think much depends on what the FO decides to do with Ian Stewart–if he’s truly healthy, and they resign him, and he comes fairly close to his potential, it won’t be a bad deal for the Cubs. If they get rid of him, or if they resign him and he continues to produce as he did this year–well, that’s not good.

    • MikeL

      August,

      Colvin has trouble hitting outside of Coors (he is hitless in this series at Wrigley) and DJ simply cannot hit. He might get a hit here and there, but he is just as productive with the bat as Darwin is and DJ’s defense is not as a good as Darwin’s. Not even close.

  • cubzforlife

    Cubs1967 I agree 100%. There has to be a way to balance veteran free agents and the brett jacksons to win more games. I cannot remember a late august friday game in the last ten years with so many empty seats. They will be lucky to draw two million next year.

    • Njriv

      I believe they will add a couple FA next season, I think this season was more of gutting the team (Zambrano, Byrd, Soto, Baker) and seeing what you have, more of a evaluation season.

    • baldtaxguy

      Empty seats are not an indicator of paid attendance.

  • The Dude Abides

    Looks like the Dodgers philosophy is bird in hand (or this case three birds in hand) compared to two in the bush (minor league, unproven players). Should be a great experiment of two new owners over the next five years or so; Cubs conservative slow steady approach vs. the Dodgers in your face go for it now approach.

  • Tyron

    This hole rebuilding shit is way too far
    Away I’m so sick of this team losing an trying
    To find young talant ,we won’t be signing the
    Next big free agents for years to come,the new
    Owner has no clue what he’s doing what’s so
    Ever ugh

    • Tommy

      What moves would you have made at the beginning of this year if you were the GM?

    • Drew7

      Let this be a lesson, kids: Stay in School.

    • baldtaxguy

      Then your not a fan anymore? Another team needs you – try the Dodgers, they have a plan in place for you.

  • Njriv

    I’m pretty sure that a lot of people during the off-season that heard we were rebuilding, did not actually know what rebuilding was. They liked the idea of getting bad then getting good, but now that they are actually living through the process, they don’t want it.

    • Carew

      It sure seems like that.

      I personally can deal. At least we know that there is indeed a plan. Patience is a virtue :)

    • Frank

      Absolutely–many people on this site were clamoring for a rebuild, and now that it’s actually happening, they can’t deal with it. Personally, I never liked the idea of a down-to-the-ground rebuild, but now that it’s happening, you have to go with it. I always thought there was no sense in throwing out the good along with the bad, and organizational change can still be made in increments. But–that hasn’t worked–at least not when the Cubs have tried it. When a building burns to the ground, it takes awhile to build something in its place. We can only hope that the structure replacing the last one is better and stronger.

  • http://bleachernation.com someday…2015?

    Wow, im gone for a couple of days and I miss all this. Well the Red sox get an A++++++++ for the trade and ill give the Dodgers a solid D- Like you said Brett, the Dodgers have gone outside their minds on this one. The only reason I dont give the Dodgers an F is because they didn’t have to give up Zach Lee.

  • http://www.bleedcubbieblue.com Josh

    I don’t know how “great” a year Tyler Colvin is having. His season seems to be completely a creation of Coors Field. On the road he’s hitting .265/.291/.464, which is hardly anything to brag about. He does seem to be able to take advantage of Coors, although his .385 BAbip at home indicates there’s some luck there, although one would expect players would have a higher BAbip at Coors.

    Certainly he’s having a better season than Ian Stewart, and he is back to something close to what he was in 2010. Colvin’s decent, but he’s not exactly a building block for a future contender. More of a spare part.

    • DocPeterWimsey

      A .339/.379/.726 June (mostly at home, but some on the road) also has played a big role. That was less than 70 PAs, and you expect a guy with Colvin’s basic numbers to put up a string of 70 PAs like that once a year or so.

  • Featherstone

    Anyone think that Crawford’s contract will make Soriano’s contract look reasonable by comparison? At least Soriano had a few near contract value years in the beginning, but jeez has Crawford been snake-bitten.

    • http://bleachernation.com someday…2015?

      Snake bitten? More like Coiled, munched up and swallowed whole.

  • Jp

    Can someone explain to me how this trade is even possible???? I get Crawford, and Beckett clearing waivers but seriously nobody is willing to take on Gonzo’s contract? I thought everyone had to pass through the waivers process on a case by case basis? This trade blows my mind on how it passes the smell test. Thanks in advance and sorry if someone already answered this and I missed it.

    • hcs

      Technically, neither Beckett or AGon cleared waivers. The Dodgers claimed both of them, from what i am understanding. But monstrous contracts probably let them slide past all of the other teams.

      • DocPeterWimsey

        Yeah, the Dodgers are probably the worst team that could both use and afford these players.

        • Jp

          This is just a very odd deal that a PACKAGE of players could be traded in this manner late in the game. Brett please explain if you have the time between picks and don’t reach on Trent Richardson tonight, he’s a stud but injury prone

          • Crockett

            There is nothing odd about this. I think you need to ask more specific questions.

            Adrian Gonzalez was placed on waivers because the Red Sox and Dodgers had been talking. Beckett was also claimed by the Dodgers. Crawford likely went unclaimed by anyone, and it’s an easy asssumption that Punto cleared too.

            James Loney would’ve cleared easily…and the rest didn’t need to because of the player-to-be-named-later (PTBNL) rule.

            What else confuses you? I’m genuinely asking, not being a jerk.

  • Goldencub

    I was thinking the exact same thing since I heard about the trade JP.

  • Jp

    Baffling right? People were going crazy over Gonzo when he was made available by the padres and now nobody is willing to pick up his contract without having to give up a huge prospect and just provide the SAUX with some financial relief?

  • notcubbiewubbie

    tyler colvin another great example of the dynamic duo of jim (in over my head) hendry and mike ( they only let me out on weekends) quade. nough said.

    • DocPeterWimsey

      No, Colvin really is another example of a mediocre player that “old school” people think is good. He’s just another Jeff Franceour. (Of course, the “scrappy” crowd thinks that I’ve just praised Colvin!)

  • http://It'searly Mike F

    First, this 2015/2016 thing is coming from idiots who nothing about winning or establishing a winning tradition. It comes from people who think losing guarantees something other than losing. Enter all the great minds in sports who give that crap a resounding raspberry.

    Second, that doesn’t mean you have to run out spend 250M to win now in free agency. You don’t. You have to establish accountability. And we’ll see, there’s mixed reviews here, frankly I don’t see that Theo has emphasized winning or been any tougher than Hendry, and that’s not a compliment. I give them high marks for verbally trying to turn chicken sh t Soriano into a god, but it has back fired as he’s so comfortable sucking a Chicago tit he won’t accept a trade. At some point soon, in my view even to get LaHair on the grass, it makes sense to release him and move on. With all due respect if he’s the clubhouse leader, why the hell do you need a clubhouse.

    Finally, at some point Theo will confront the embarrassment of this season and its been that. They will make some adjustments and still believe this 2015/2016 thing is a idiotic figment of overactive imaginations. It may be a long time for this team to be a real contender, but Theo Epstein has far too big an ego to accept more than 1 more season of this, and I’m not certain he can accept another like this. And that, his ego, is a good thing. I think he’s made some mistakes and been far to lax, but I also think he’s dedicated to wining and excellence and this on field Major League experience has been horrific, no excuse. Triple digit losing is completely unacceptable.

    • MIkeL

      Mike F…..

      The reason why people are saying 2015/2016 is because it will take that long for players to graduate from the minors to the majors. Secondly, the free agent market will be pretty thin over the next couple of years. All we are saying is that it is very realistic to think that the cubs will be competitive before. The angels and marlins have shown us this year that spending does not fill all the holes and it doesn’t necessary make you competitive. The free agent market won’t have pujols or prince….so it will be worse than last year. It is very reasonable to say 2015 will be the first competitive year. I see the next few years playing out this way:

      2013: 90-95 losses.
      2014: .500 team
      2015: contender

      • Cubs1967

        but the yankees and dodgers are proving it does. you have to do it right when spending FA money. cubs won 2 straight divisions in 2007/2008. not a WS, but when’s the last time that was done? 70 yrs ago. and the pirates have rebuilt for almost 20 yrs so buidling from within does not mean it works either. if done wrong. at the end of the day, if 2016 is 1st year this team is good; and a maybe as that’s only 3 rys for baez-soler-almora-etc……….that would be year 7 of pussified Ricketts owning this team. is that OK? NO! and also last year of theo’s 5 yr deal. another NO!

        • King Jeff

          Most of the Dodgers core stars are guys that they drafted and developed. Only when they were ready to compete and their financial situation was right(this year) did they go out and spend big to add pieces. Ethier, Kemp and Kershaw are homegrown and the Dodgers have mostly avoided any big name free agents since Colleti has been GM. The Yankees also supplemented their teams by spending big, but they develop a lot of their own stars or the players to trade for those stars, regardless of the common opinion that they bought their way to titles.

          • DocPeterWimsey

            Actually, Ethier was drafted by the A’s. The Dodgers got him for Milton Bradley. That leaves Kemp and Kershaw: but, then, those three plus HRam really were the sum of their good players until this trade with the Sox! The Dodgers have been competing due to a lot of OK pitchers having good years and a lot of 4th OFers & utility IFers playing on the high end of their expectations. (Also, “mediocre MLB team” = “very good NL West team” these days!)

            The Yankees have developed only one good position player in the last decade, Cano. Jeter is the only other regular from their farm system, but he was drafted 20 years ago. They did acquire Granderson for farmhands (Austin Jackson being the biggest name) and ARod was acquired for Sori.

            Of their pitchers, only Hughes and (I think) Nova are farmhands: and Nova’s actually not any good!

            • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

              I think the Yanks could probably get credit for Robertson, too.

              • DocPeterWimsey

                Oh, yeah: I was limiting my thinking of starters, but Robertson has been huge for them. Of course, they still have Rivera, and he’s homegrown, too. I think the first Elisabeth was Queen when the Yanks signed him.

                Has Joba clinched a HoF plaque yet? ;-)

        • @cubsfantroy

          @Cubs1967

          Bringing up the Pirates as an example is dumb. They were calling it rebuilding, but they were doing it every three years. Every time someone was ready to make a big splash in arbitration or free agency they traded them away so they didn’t have to pay them a ridiculous contract. Now they are starting to spend the money on their home grown talent. McCutchen 5 years ago would not have gotten the contract he had gotten, he would have been traded.

          Regardless of how you feel, Theo is doing this the right way. He is shedding cap space and making sure we have the talent in the minors to build around. Free agency only gets you so far. Hell, in three years or so the Dodgers are going to be screwed. The Yankees are getting older and have around $200 million tied up per season for a long time with some contracts that they won’t be able to unload because of the high price for aging players.

          Nothing else has worked in the last 100 years, so why not give this a chance?

          It is only the first year, if you didn’t expect bumps in the road, then you’re an idiot.

  • McMurphy

    I’d rather follow Billy Beane’s model of getting cheap players that everyone undervalues and have a winning team every year than all this rebuilding crap. When did the rays or a’s rebuild?

    • Tommy

      Billy Beane of the Oakland A’s? Which Oakland team would you like the Cubs to emulate?

      The:
      2011 team: 74 wins
      2010 team: 81 wins
      2009 team: 75 wins
      2008 team: 75 wins
      2007 team: 76 wins

      I don’t think that’s a model we’re looking to imitate.

    • MIkeL

      How many championships do they A’s have with billy beane as gm? And what are you talking about when did the A’s or rays rebuild?!? The rays went through a major rebuilding process and the a’s are doing that right now….they just traded GUI Gonzalez for a bunch of minor leaguers….

    • DocPeterWimsey

      I’d rather follow Billy Beane’s model of getting cheap players that everyone undervalues

      That half of Moneyball is extinct, at least for hitters. When Beane did this, there were two key batting stats that generate a ton of runs but that people ignored: walks and doubles. In particular, what Beane noted is that good offenses had guys who got on base and got a lot of extra hits: good offenses were not driven by “clutch” hitting. (Obviously, homers are important: but it’s tough to hide that.)

      I think that the last of the “walks are not important” and/or “we’ll focus on situational hitting” GMs is gone by now.

      Now, for pitching, it still might be possible. However, I think that it’s become generally well-known that you want groundball pitchers over flyball pitchers even if groundball pitchers give up more hits and get fewer K’s than flyball pitchers do: those extra hits tend to be singles instead of grounders and homers.

      The part of Moneyball that is here to stay is using different stats than the ones on our old Topps baseball cards to evaluate players.

      • Njriv

        You mean there is more to Moneyball than having Scott Hatteberg playing first base?

        • DocPeterWimsey

          The funny thing is, I’m never entirely sure what people mean when they say “Moneyball”! When I use the word, I am referring to focusing on stats that actually predict how much a player will contribute to run differential. However, I realize that half of it was about doing this to maximize value, at least 10+ years ago. That half is (I think) gone.

          • Flashfire

            Beane really should have kept his mouth shut on his secrets until he retired.

            • DocPeterWimsey

              The secret never would have been kept that long. In a way, Beane was just regurgitating what the statheads had known for years: and by 10 years ago, the consistently winning teams were using “advanced” (circa 2000) stats already. All Beane really did was describe what the Yankees were actually doing rather than what people thought that the Yankees were doing.

  • ferrets_bueller

    First off, Cherrington is now a legend of the calibur of Alex Anthopouplis. This deal was massively bigger for the Sox than getting rid of Wells was for the Jays, even.

    However, people ripping this from the side of the Dodgers are a little off.
    If this gets them a World Series….which, to be honest….it looks like it might…then its worth it.
    A-Gonz is a beast having a bad year. Beckett, for all his flaws, shores up the bottom of that rotation nicely.
    These guys were the key players in Boston. They are not in LA. Kershaw and Kemp are. Suddenly, you have one hell of a second tier in Dodger-land. A-Gonz, Hanley, Beckett….they’ve always been the best hitter, or #1 or #2 pitcher wherever they’ve played.

  • die hard

    Pinella didn’t like him because he thought he wasnt tough enough…What Pinella failed to see was inner strength…Prediction-he will make more All-Star games than whoever we got for him…and thats a shame

    • King Jeff

      If you’re talking about Colvin, then Pinella gave him more playing time than anyone. Quade is the real culprit in not giving Colvin a fair shot when he was in Chicago.

  • fromthemitten

    RED WINGS ONLY 15th?

    BULLSHIIIIIIIIIT

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