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Happy Labor Day, friends, and I hope you’re relaxing or firing up the grill today. Enjoy it.

  • Dale Sveum suggested yesterday that Travis Wood is locked into a starting spot next year. “He’s positioned himself as one of our starters [for 2013],” Sveum said of the 25-year-old, per Carrie Muskat. “He’s made strides to learn how to pitch completely different than he ever has, and it’s made him able to survive and have some really good games …. He’s coming, and it’s been an adjustment, but I think he’s done a pretty good job, too.” I think it’s fine to believe that Wood projects to be one of the five starters next year, but I think it’s hard to say with certainty that he’s going to be one of the guys in the same way that you can say with certainty that Jeff Samardzija is going to be one of the guys. We can’t yet know what offseason moves will be made, nor can we know what strides other rotation competitors might make. I’m not saying Sveum is wrong – he can’t be, since it’s largely his decision, assuming Wood is still on the roster – I’m saying only that it’s September 3. A lot can change. As things are looking, though, behind Samardzija and Matt Garza, Wood is the likeliest currently-rostered pitcher to have a rotation spot next year. I doubt Sveum meant to say much more than that.
  • Cubs pitching coach Chris Bosio points out that, clearly, the sole reason for the Cubs’ disastrous season was none other than Koyie Hill. “That was crushing,” Bosio told the Tribune of the 12-game losing streak back in May when the Cubs had all of Geovany Soto, Welington Castillo, and Steve Clevenger on the DL. “Those who really know baseball know it’s hard to get the battery on the same page, and then you’re forced to bring in a guy [Koyie Hill] who hasn’t been with you all spring and doesn’t really know what we’re doing. That, to me, was the hardest point, the most challenging point of the season.” Boom. Koyie’d.
  • More don’t-rest-guys-against-contenders stuff from Sveum. “I’ll give them days off when I think it’s called for and we’re not playing contending teams,’’ Sveum said, per the Sun-Times. “A lot of times you can tell [when a day off is needed], but sometimes you have to keep them in the lineup. And you never think of taking two guys out on the same day.’’ Never! You NEVER(!) rest two starters on the same day! Heresy, I say! (I hate myself for saying it, but Dusty Baker used to rest four regulars on the same day. I kind of liked that approach – or maybe I’m just recreating my memory because I think it’s kind of lame to arbitrarily decide that you just CAN’T rest two starters on the same day … in September of a completely lost season.) (I still like Dale. Don’t write me angry letters.)
  • Alfonso Soriano is now the 10th player with at least four 25-home run seasons with the Cubs. The other nine include some names you may have heard of: Sammy Sosa, Billy Williams, Ernie Banks, Ron Santo, Aramis Ramirez, Ryne Sandberg, Hank Sauer, Bill Nicholson, and Hack Wilson.
  • As noted on Twitter (you followin’?), reliever Miguel Socolovich, claimed on waivers from the Orioles a couple weeks ago, is now up with the big team.
  • Alex Hinshaw, the lefty whom the Cubs claimed off of waivers from the Padres before he imploded against the Brewers, has been outrighted to AAA Iowa … whose season is over. He was DFA’d last week.
  • The MLBullets at BCB look at the Tigers’ sweep of the White Sox, which brought them into a tie atop the AL Central. Soxenfreude?
  • Jeff L

    LIsten guys it wont get any better unless

    1. People actually stop showing up to games… Like what the Yankee fans will do or the Redsox

    2. Got to find a way to get the message across to Ricketts that Cub fans can’t STAND 2 OR 3 MORE YEARS OF REBUILDING.

    3. Listen we should rebuild the way the RedSox will… Spend the money to put a decent team on the field. We have the 3rd HIGHEST TICKET PRICES in baseball… We need to start a campaign to get our voice heard. As of now I’m hearing we will have at the most a 70 mil dollar payroll next year. We deserve at the very least 100mil… Thats at the very least. Now I’m not saying throw money around. Spend it wisely like going after a Zach Greinky and build up that starting pitching staff.

    • RY34

      you are dead on, great points! wrigley needs to become a ghost town

      • Sircub

        Ya, right on dudes. That’s exactly what the cubs need: less revenue.

    • Josh

      You’re an idiot. Nothing further to say

    • Doug Dascenzo

      They tried that plan already under Jim Hendry and it didn’t work. If you want to go back to that cycle again be prepared for a team with no certain future because that plan isn’t sustainable unless you’re the Yankees.

      • Jeff L

        So, because they didn’t win the WS but made the playoffs more often than they ever had that way doesn’t work. If you don’t have any darts (playoffs) to throw at the dartboard you will never hit the bullseye (WS).

        • Flashfire

          They made the playoffs 3 years in Hendry’s 10? That works against your argument, not for it. When Hendry is wrong on a couple FAs — which he was, multiple times — the team is awful. If you build from the minors up, even if you’re only right 1 out of every 10 times, you still have a really, really good team. Ask the Rangers.

          • BD

            Hendry’s 3 out of 10 isn’t so bad when you compare to the 4 out of 55 or so that came before him. Not saying we should just go hog wild spending money, but just thought that part of the argument was actually true.

            They need to spend “some” money, but without committing to long contracts. I’m fine with most of our current line-up, the money needs to go to pitching.

      • Flashfire

        If you look closely at the Yankees, it really isn’t sustainable for them. The truly dominant team — 1996-2001 — was largely home-grown all around the field. When they added free agents, it was always a few at a time. And, since they’ve become largely mercenary, they’ve won a lot of games, but only one World Series win since 2000. And while they might sneak out a win this year, Texas still has to be the favorite going into the playoffs. We’d take it, sure, but certainly not what George was paying for.

        • DocPeterWimsey

          The truly dominant team — 1996-2001 — was largely home-grown all around the field.

          Actually, only Jeter, Williams and Posada were homegrown from the everyday players. Brosuis, Tino, O’Neil, Sierra & Knoblauch were all trade or FA acquisitions. Among the pitchers, Pettite was homegrown, as was Rivera. The other starters were trade or FA acquisitions, too. Rivera was homegrown, and probably some of the middle relief starters were, too.

          Now, 3 homegrown guys on a contending team – and especially 3 good hitters from “skill” positions (even if they were below average fielders – is not too shabby. However, it was still a minority of the team.

          • http://casualcubsfan.blogger.com hansman1982

            see my comment below…the Yankees are NOT a free-agent mecca (unless you are one of the best of the best of the best)

    • chirogerg

      Dude, you’re a tard.

      • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

        Easy on that stuff.

    • baldtaxguy

      I’d like to see them pursue Grieke this offseason. He would be an interesting addition in this rebuilding period.

      • baldtaxguy

        “Greinke”

      • RY34

        agreed, i would like to see them pursue 2 quality arms and 2 quality bats.

  • Mysterious4th

    Bosio finally said outloud what all of us cub fans have been saying about Koyie Hill……….

    He SUCKS! Glad he is the ranger’s problem now. How many teams has he played for (or attempted to play for but clearly isn’t good enough.)just this year? I want to say 5 but can only think of 4 (Cards, Reds, Cubs, now rangers)

    • Ben (BG2383)

      I believe he did a stint with the nationals also, but I could be wrong

      • Mysterious4th

        That was the team I was missing. I knew it was 5 but when somebody goes thru 5 teams in 3/4 of a season, it’s hard to keep up with it.

  • Rich

    I think there is a lot of truth in that. The Cubs are like a McDonalds. They are license to print money. The Cubs who will lose 100 games are averaging 12,000 more per game then the White Sox who have a very good team and been in first place most of the year.

    I simply do not understand why we cannot build and spend at the same time. I am guessing that in order to draft really well, that we must suck for years. But this off season should be interesting….

    and on a side note, I have voiced my continuous displeasure of listening to Len and is monotone calls of the game. Harry Carray was loved because he was a Cub fan and got excited as fans would.

    Listen to Chip’s call of Chipper’s walk off last night. Len would not have even come close to that excitement.

    I cannot be a Cub fan and talk about what might be in 2015 or 2016…unless we are talking about a new Wrigley Field…but there are no promises of players making the bigs..

    • Chris

      It’s great to say this, but what could they have done differently this season that they didn’t do? Sign Prince Fielder? That would have been a horrible decision. They bid on Darvish. They bid on Cespedes. They tried to spend money in a smart way this year. Other than signing DeJesus and Maholm, I’m not sure there were many other guys out there they could have signed to team friendly deals, thinking long-term. Should they have given Aramis Ramirez a ridiculous 3 year deal like the Brewers did? I keep seeing posts like this, so this is not directed just at you, but nobody has a realistic example of what could have been done this season. Teams need to rebuild. The Cubs should have done this 15 years ago. But they decided to spend unwisely, investing in aged veterans rather than the farm system. I’ve been a Cubs fan 30 years and I understand the feeling of not wanting to be patient. But they’ve tried to do things without rebuilding all this time. They lost their realistic window in 2009 when Derek Lee became less productive. 2010 should have been a rebuilding year. It didn’t happen. If you don’t want to go to the park, then don’t go. I don’t either. But that’s what’s all the more impressive to me. Even when we stop going to the park, I truly believe that Theo and Jed are going to continue on their path of rebuilding the organization. Year one, Rookie League and SS-A both make the playoffs. Year 2 should show a progression from that. And when there are enough younger guys up in the majors taking on every-day roles, they must sprinkle in smart veteran free agents, and trade some of the upcoming prospects for veterans that can help the ML team win. Look at the Free Agency list for this upcoming season. They could sign the top 5-7 guys and still not be a playoff contender. So why do it? I don’t care if they lose 100 games in a rebuilding year. Winning 80 and not making the playoffs is the same result at the end of the day, only they draft in a later spot.

      • Jeff L

        Chris, yes bidding the highest which they could have done for Darvish, Cespedes, and maybe even Fielder would have put the Cubs in position to win in a weak division. Guaranteed. If they didnt trade away their top pitchers this year with the way Dempster was pitching and Malcolm they stood a good chance of making the playoffs. Like I said before if you make the playoffs anything can happen!!!

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

          There was no way for them to know that they didn’t have the highest bid for Darvish or Cespedes. They, if I am not mistaken, were in the top two or three for both as far as bids went though. And as far as Fielder, why would they want to sign him. It would be Alfonso Soriano all over again in terms of contract, he would never live up to it.

          And who the hell is Malcolm?

          • Flashfire

            Second in both, I believe, but Texas was the only one who made a real play for Darvish. Theo was probably shocked to be second with his bid on Darvish.

            Cespedes I think they really wanted, but the A’s came in shockingly high. Props to the A’s there. We got Soler — and he’s showing signs of being great.

          • Doug Dascenzo

            And who the hell is Malcolm?

            Frankie Muniz must have had another career we didn’t know about.

            • Jeff L

              Paul Malhom is who i meant

        • Chris

          They’ve made the playoffs. Anything does not happen when it comes to the Cubs. THey need a true powerhouse to close the door on this damn 100+ year chapter. I think it’s silly to continue throwing good money after bad, bringing in over the hill veterans. That is how they kept people in the seats, stealing our money all these years. I don’t disagree that fans should respond and not go to games as this rebuilding effort starts. It will be a good reminder for the front office to know they have to spend the money and get the team good. I just think it’s short-sighted to watch the Cubs lock players into bad contracts jus for the sake of 20 more wins, and MAYBE a playoff spot. Teams have rebuilt like this and won. The Marlins being the best example. It’s not to say all the young players will come up and be stars. Cleary the odds of that are stacked against them. But trades can bring stars here too. The Cubs made their last playoff push by acquiring Ramirez and Lee via trades with “prospects”. But then they were all out of prospects and had to patch the rest of those teams together via free agency, coming up a little short. But if we have a system where “prospects are plentiful”, this team can be like the Yankees. And with the coverage that this big market team gets, our “prospects” can be overhyped like the Yankees’ prospects are, creating even more buzz and the ability to trade for superstars when they come available. That’s what I want to see. Also, in the case of Darvish and Cespedes, they were blind bids. By all accounts, the Cubs were at the top of the bidding in both cases. I can’t fault them for not getting those guys, if that’s the case. And they outbid everyone on Soler, who is clearly an impressive prospect. I’m so tired of people trying to call this a money grab. It isn’t. The Tribune Company was a money chasing ownership for 25 years, and were ripped for it deservingly. The Ricketts family is not doing the same thing. They ate Zambrano’s money. They ate Silva’s money. They ate Dempster’s money. They spent the max in the draft and internationally. They bid on the 2 top young international players that came available, only to come up short. But that wasn’t a Ricketts call, Theo and Jed bid on those players, using the budget allotted to them. If yiou believe they are stealing money, don’t go to games. I can’t stop the lemmings from going to the beer garden that is Wrigley Field, but I think it’s acceptable for the baseball fans to stop going. However, I hope the organization continues to stockpile young prospects for the rebuilding effort. And I hope that Theo and Jed also spend free agent money smartly, on either players at the beginning of their prime, 28 years old or younger, and short term team-friendly contracts on guys they want to take a chance on. DeJesus and Maholm being good examples of that.

        • chirogerg

          They offered Cespedes the same amount the A’s did, but he chose the A’s. Darvish would have been nice to have, but their bid came in second place. They won the Soler bidding, and were the highest bidder on Puig.

        • chirogerg

          And the NL Central is by no account a weak division. The Reds are one of the best teams in baseball, the Pirates have the best rotation in the NL, and you can NEVER count the Cardinals out

      • Can’t thik of a cool name

        First, I will say I have faith in the new Cub front office, however, everyone makes mistakes. I think they should have resigned Ramirez, 3 years 36 million for one of the best hitting 3B in the league? I think it would be a good move. Would have made the lineup better. But again we all make mistakes. I think the Colvin trade was a mistake but that’s in hindsight. It was hard to question the trade when it was made. That being said, I think building the minor leagues is the way to go. I think we’ll see some FA signings of the DeJesus and Malholm like. Give the front office credit for those signings, they were very good if not splashy.

        My 2 cents.

  • Jeff L

    Its hard being a fan of a team owned by a guy who told his dad that win or lose we will make money.

    An owner that says that has his own agenda. He didn’t buy the team with his money it was his dads… The man doesn’t want to spend. In this league you have to spend to win. The RedSox will spend and get young players to “rebuild” because their owner wants to win.

    Cub fans we got to start being more like Yankee and RedSox fans and demand a winning team, or not go to the games. Thats the only way to get Ricketts to listen. If we show we are ok BEING THE 2ND WORST TEAM IN BASEBALL WITH THE 3RD HIGHEST TICKET PRICES.. then we deserve to be. It’s up to us to show are displeasure and that we are not onboard with a 4-5 year rebuilding plan!!!

    • Professional_High_A

      Pretty sure the owners want to win, however they seemed more focused on winning a world series than winning 85 games every season. Not saying its right or wrong just what I see.

      • Chris

        It’s right. We’ve seen a few 85 win seasons. I’m no more satisfied to see that than I am with a 100 loss season and progress with the young players. I don’t need wild card berths, with no hope of advancing. I need a World Series.

        • Jeff L

          There have been teams that won more than 100 games and won the World Series hint the Seattle Mariners. And there have been teams that won less than 90 the (Cardinals)… It doesn’t matter how many games you win in the season all that matters is that you get hot when the playoffs start. You just got to get to the playoffs and anything can happen. Why are you Cub fans so brain washed with this rebuilding rhetoric. Please if you do believe in the “rebuilding rhetoric” give me a team where this actually worked in the last 15 years.

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

            When have the Mariners ever won the World Series?

          • chirogerg

            How about the 09-present Rangers, the Rays of 07-present, the Phillies of 08-present, the Cardinals of FOREVER, the 03 Marlins, the ’96-01 Yankees, the 04-08 Red Sox, the 10-present Tigers, this year’s Orioles, the Braves ALWAYS, and the BIGGEST example of all, THIS YEAR’S NATIONALS. Rebuilding and building through the farm system always works, always has worked, and always will work; it’s the nature of baseball.

            I don’t know where your head is, but this is clearly the right move for the Cubs. Drafting 2 overall and 19 overall are the same, because neither team gets to the playoffs.

            In 3 years, we’ll have Szczur in CF, Barney or Amaya at 2B, Castro at SS, Baez at 3B, Rizzo at 1B, Jackson in LF, and Soler in RF. That will be a formidable lineup, both defensively and offensively. With a good free-agent signing or two, it is a multiple-playoff caliber team, which is the best way to get to the world series

            • Featherstone

              “Drafting 2 overall and 19 overall are the same, because neither team gets to the playoffs.”

              This is something that cannot be stressed enough. If your going to miss the playoffs miss it bad.

        • gutshot5820

          What do you mean, you are not interested in a wild card birth and only a world series team? A wild card team is a contender and the only way you can win a World Series is if you make the playoffs where anything can happen.

    • Frank

      You cannot say he doesn’t want to spend when he’s eating $45,000,000 in contracts for players who are no longer here, expands the front office drastically, spends the max allowable in the draft and international free agency, comes near the top in bids for two of the best international free agents available, builds a new facility in the Dominican, and buys up land around the park for expansion. No–that money did not go into the big league payroll–but it did go into the organization. You may argue that he doesn’t spend wisely, but you simply cannot argue that he doesn’t spend.

  • Martin

    I know I posted this before, but I still feel like, if the Cubs can find a way to bring in 30 something guys on 3-4 year deals, this team can be both set for the future while simultaneously challenge for the Wild Card in the coming year.

    For example, if they can get some combination of, oh, let’s say Brandon McCarthy (4/$48), Shawn Marcum (3/36) and Kevin Youkilis (3/30), that’s an expenditure of $34 million for next year. That gives the Cubs a 2 and 3 starter, pushing Samardijza to the #4 and Wood to the #5. You could even throw Swisher in there for 3/36 or 4/45.

    In the minors, Vizcaino can have more time to get back healthy, and guys like Baez, Soler, and Almora won’t get rushed. Vitters becomes trade bait for a team who believes in toolsy guys, and Jackson either continues to progress as both a hitter and a center fielder (he’s made some strides over the last few weeks) or waits it out for another year in the minors/becomes trade bait also.

    You’re looking at a lineup of

    DeJesus CF (obviously the lineup would look different if Jackson was the CF)
    Castro SS
    Rizzo 1B
    Youkilis 3B
    Swisher RF
    Soriano LF
    Castillo C
    Barney 2B
    P

    and a starting 5 of:
    Garza
    Marcum
    McCarthy
    Samardzija
    Wood

    It’s an old, potentially bad lineup. But it also has potential to win 85 games in a weak NL, while not really retarding the growth of the farm system in any real way.

    Given the new CBA, we all know the farm system build up will take longer than expected. Because of that, it might be good to field a team that, at least in the short-term, can keep fans engaged and challenge for a Wild Card.

    • Martin

      btw-if you keep the deals at 3/4 years, you’re also putting the end of these FA’s contracts in line with when the Baez, Soler, Almora, et. al. will be ready to step into MLB, at least per the projections.

    • Chris

      How is this a World Series team? We as fans are selling ourselves short if this is what we have to look forward to. Listen, I agree, I want them to spend all the money to sign free agents and win it all. But this isn’t the way to do it, in my opinion. They needed to do what they’ve done. Strip it down to the studs and rebuild the damn thing, the right way. Giving a bunch of veterans 3-4 year deals, in their 30′s, is damning them to be mediocre. They’ve done that already. I want this team to spend like the Yankees and now the Dodgers. But when the time is right. And that will be when they have a core group of players at the major league level ready to compete. 85 wins is not the goal. 100 wins and multiple World Series appearances is. The team you’ve proposed maybe gets them to a wild card birth, where they are trounced in the first game. Then the following year they are bad, and locked into contracts for 2-3 more years on guys that are over the hill.

      • Martin

        Take a look at this year’s FAs and find a better team.

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

          So you just want to throw money at free agents who are not going to get the Cubs anywhere, just to throw money at them and hear the front office say “look, we tried.” Isn’t that the exact thing that Hendry, MacPhail, Green and quite a few GM’s have done over the years?

          Seems legit.

          • Martin

            Once again–It. Is. Not. Binary. It is not “build farm system or spend on major league team.” It is “the new CBA has all but guaranteed that the farm system will not be ready until 2015 at best, so put a team on the field with a chance to get a Wild Card birth in the meantime.”

            • @cubsfantroy

              So what you’re saying is, this team that you put up is a contender? In what universe?

              Nowhere have I ever said, and not once have I ever said not to get anyone in free agency. But, they need to be smart about it. They need to get pieces to fill the puzzle, not just get pieces. That team would be just as bad as this years. And there is a chance they wouldn’t stay healthy and an even bigger chance they wouldn’t sign with the Cubs. Your theory isn’t sound.

              • Martin

                If you honestly think that team would go 62-100 (which is what this team will probably do), you’re out of your mind.

                So who would you go after? Please be specific.

                There isn’t a single player under 30 that is going to be available via free agency, unless you’re willing to break the bank for Greinke. You’re not getting long-term pieces that will contribute to the 2015 and beyond team in Free Agency anymore. At this point, given the new CBA and the fact that young players are getting locked up early in their careers, the best you can hope for is stop-gaps until your own homegrown players are ready.

                • John

                  ok, i’ll play then. Youkilis will not be available, as the sox have an option that i would be shocked they didn’t pick up.

                  You’re not getting Swisher for 3/36 in any universe–much less this one, where he is 1) a yankee and 2) the best outfielder in a very weak class. He gets at least 5 years from someone.

                  Shark is better than both McCarthy and Marcum right now…if for no other reason than the fact that he can stay on the field.

                  So let’s see, two guys with 190 ip combined this year will lead us to the World Series? The problem is simple–there are not really very many good fa options this year. Now to be fair, I would love it if we could get McCarthy and/or Marcum on a short term “see if they’re healthy” kind of deal, but the rest of your plan is simple not feasible.

          • notcubbiewubbie

            totally agree stop living in the past to win a few games now.

          • notcubbiewubbie

            why can’t we be friends why can’t we be friends why can’t we be friends there is a song somewhere there. lol.

      • Martin

        It’s not binary. And their best minor leaguers are, at best, 3 years away. In the meantime, you build a bridge.

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

      Give me some of that good green you’ve been smoking.

      And seriously, Youkilis? The guy has a glass body and is going to be 34 at the start of spring training next year. You want to give that guy a 3 year contract? Shawn Marcum is going to get overpaid by someone, and I really hope it isn’t the Cubs. Unless it is a one year contract. He is 30 and has had shoulder troubles. Not the kind of guy you want to lock up for a few years at that age. McCarthy has two decent years and you’re ready to throw 4/48 at him? Swisher? HAHAHAHAHAHAHA

      Seriously, if you think that lineup even puts us into contention, pass the stuff you’ve been smoking because I need some of it too.

    • ryan

      Don’t want Youk and Swisher is seekin $100 million.

    • King Jeff

      Honestly Martin, I don’t see this as being too far off from what the Cubs might do this offseason. I really don’t like Youk at third, and can’t stand Swisher, but I believe you are on the right track. I think the FO might stick with Stewart/Valbuena/Vitters at third, and the OF may already be set unless they move Soriano, but it wouldn’t surprise me to see them add a few guys in the 10 million a season range on short term deals. Whether the Cubs could get Swisher, McCarthy, or Marcum on a deal of that sort is debatable, but I think the plan is solid.

      • Martin

        I’m certainly not advocating for Youkilis or Swisher per se–it’s just that they seem to be the best fit for what the Cubs should need (no more than 3/4 year deals). They’re not great players, and by the end of their deals they’ll be lucky to be mediocre.

        I just think that people need to be realistic about the rebuilding here. Between the Rizzo/Castro/Jackson group and the Soler/Baez/Almora group there is a MASSIVE gap–AAA and AA are barren. There’s no Rizzo next year for this team (Vizcaino is a maybe, although no one knows if he’s going to be a starter or closer at this point), and there may not be a Rizzo in the following year. The farm system will not be producing anything for the next year and a half.

        Furthermore, even if Soler/Baez/Almora move quickly through the system and get into Chicago by 2014, they’re not going to be championship-caliber players until at least 2016 or 2017.

        Be it Youkilis, Swisher, McCarthy, Marcum, or whomever, this team is absolutely going to need to fill some holes for the next 3/4 years. That’s just the reality of the situation.

    • Kevin

      I could be wrong but signing free agents, under the new CBA, will cost the team draft picks. If our focus is to rebuild our farm system, wouldn’t this be counter productive?

      • gutshot5820

        Why would you ever pass up on an impact free agent in the majors for a chance at a 16-17 yr old 3-4 yrs away, with a 15-20% chance of ever playing in the show?

        Theo was right, Cub fans are eternally optimistic. Boston fans would never accept what the Cubs are doing. I would be all for the tear down and rebuild, except for the new CBA. There is no way to outspend in the draft anymore. You guys do realize that every team in the majors has a farm system and scouting dept too? For every prospect we hype, most every team has one that can match them.. It is like Cubs fans are in a bubble, you think just because we stink and draft higher than other teams for the next few yrs, we will be GOOD after that? Hahahaha! The players on the major league roster are much more valuable that anyone in the minor leagues.

        It is absolutely silly and delusional for anyone to root for the Cubs to lose in order for them to draft higher. If the Cubs finish last for the next two years, what would that mean? That means, none of the young players on the MLB team are any good or advancing. For the team to be any good in the future, the young players on the Cubs need to advance and actually be good and that means winning. No draft pick is worth, the Cubs young players stinking. I’d much rather be picking in the middle and have Rizzo, Jackson, Castro, etc raking.

  • Jeff L

    Guys don’t get fooled with the ownership and especially Epsteins rhetoric. The ownerships main goal right now is to get “you the fans” on board with not spending and call it “rebuilding”. In the majors if you can make the playoffs you are a contender for the World Series. The Cardinals proved that last year. They came in with a pretty pathetic record and took the Championship. You just have to be there to try. It’s just like any game unless your in the game you dont have a chance to win.

    Right now the Cubs are the 2nd farther from being in the game. Winning 85 to 90 games in a season and making the playoffs puts them in the game. Gives them the best chance to win it all. Hendry put us in the game. We didn’t win it but it was exciting and the more swings we take in the playoffs the more of a chance we have. It’s the team who gets hot at the end of the year remember that guys. This so call perfect CHEAP team Epstein is trying to put together is a formula that NEVER WORKS… Even the Rays are now spending a little bit more because the realize that fact. The Royals and Pirates who have also used this formula can’t even make the playoffs. DON’T GET FOOLED BY EPSTEINS RHETORIC.

    • skidrow

      Jeff if the ownership is so bad why don’t you start rooting for a different team. Cause it seems to me that the cubs can’t do nothing right to please you. I’m a cub fan for 30 years, i guess i can wait a couple more years.

    • chirogerg

      When the Bucs win the world series this year, I will seriously take a dump on your face and call you the biggest retard on the face of the Earth. Please stop rooting for the Cubs and please, dear God, please do not come crawling back we Epstein and Co make 8 playoffs in a row plus a WS win. You should go die in a hole, Jeff L.

  • Spoda17

    I know this is the theme of this year, and will be over the winter, but I must say one more time that this is not a conspiracy to eff Cub fans and make money by the Rickets family.

    Jeff and Rich, it makes no sense for Rickets to hire Theo and Jed, and spend a ton of money in the front office and player development to not plan on putting a winning team on the field, a consistent winning team. I find it ironic (that’s funny in an odd kind of way) McDonalds was used as example. In today’s society, all we want is “fast-food.” I want it now, and I don’t give a shit how it tastes, just shove it in my mouth. I would understand if it was 2014 and this was the team, but we haven’t even gotten through one year of a new approach and the “boycott” approach is already been suggested.

    If you ever go to a steak house, and there are no prices listed on the menu, then you know you are getting a well-aged, well prepared, steak that took some time for it to be ready. Be patient, if we are at the end of 2013 and we have made no strides forward, then I will take a different approach, but until then… be patient and go out and have a nice steak…

    • Professional_High_A

      Nice catch on the fast food analogy.

  • Jeff L

    Spoda17,

    Please give me one example of a team in the modern MLB that is building the way the Ricketts, Hoyer, and Epstein are doing and won a championship. If you can I will happily get on board with Ricketts saving millions of dollars and us “building the right way”.

    The truth is their is a great RedSox article out that explains that there is no way their ownership will stand for that type of rebuilding and feel that they can build the farm system and be able to compete next year. Thats the way a big market team supposed to go about their business. Especially one expecting fans to pay for the 3rd highest ticket prices in baseball!!!

    • Flashfire

      1992 New York Yankees.

      • chirogerg

        and don’t forget the ’96, ’98, ’99, 2000 Yankees, the 04-07 Redsox, the 08-09 Phillies, the Rangers were one pitch away, the Nationals will probably win it all this year. The Cardinals do it every single year, and IMHO, they have had the most consistently good farm system in baseball from 1900 onward. How else can a team that loses the best hitter in the NL still be so damn good? They haven’t signed a BIG name free agent (Berkman doesn’t count) in forever. Homegrown superstars: Pujols, Molina, Wainwright, Freese. Other homegrown players that helped them win: Jay, Lynn, Schumaker, Garcia, Descalso, Motte. Small free-agent signings: Chris Carpenter, Lance Berkman. Traded for: Matt Holliday, Rafael Furcal. The Cardinals build consistent winners by having one of the best farm systems in baseball that allows them to fill holes left by departing players and trade for All-Stars like Matt Holliday. When they are ready to compete, they sign small-name, solid free-agents to fill the gaps. That is the best recipe for success, and the Cubs attempting to replicate it.

    • Flashfire

      Also worth noting that no other team has had to do it with the new incredibly restrictive CBA in place.

      • Kevin

        BINGO!

    • auggie1955

      While they haven’t won a championship I can give an example of a team that rebuilt from within and is winning. That is the current Pirates team.

      • Jeff L

        lol the Pirates auggie still haven’t even made the playoffs and that is your example. Well good then if you want to be like the Pirates we wont make the playoffs for the next 10 years or more.

        • Flashfire

          Again. The 1992 Yankees.

          • Jeff L

            Why do you keep mentioning the 1992 new york yankees.. They didn’t even make the playoffs. I’m asking for a team that built through the draft and didn’t spend big on free agents that won an MLB Championship!! lol why do you keep mentioning the 1992 new york yankees???

            • Flashfire

              Because the ’92 Yankees ditched all of their high priced free agents (a couple like Barfield and Mattingly were still waiting out their contracts) to build through the draft. 4 years later, good things happened.

              • Jeff L

                Do you have any idea what the question was???

                • Flashfire

                  “Please give me one example of a team in the modern MLB that is building the way the Ricketts, Hoyer, and Epstein are doing and won a championship.”

                  The Yankees did this — EXACTLY this — in 1992. They won a world championship 4 years later. By all means, keep up the personal insults, though.

              • Jeff L

                By the way fire the Yanks 4 years later after 1992 they had the highest payroll in baseball:)… Your logic makes no sense. Give me one example of a team building through the draft not spending on big free agents that won a WS.

                • Flashfire

                  Literally no one is saying don’t spend on free agency. That’s the part you’re inferring. The Cubs will spend when the base is in place or when a free agent they want is available. Much like the great Yankees teams did. They were NOT spending big on free agents in 1992. (Only Danny Tartabull was added to that team.)

                • http://casualcubsfan.blogger.com hansman1982

                  Nationals…

                  • @cubsfantroy

                    THEY HAVEN’T WON ANYTHING!!!! <<< I'm thinking that would be the response.

                    I agree, the Nationals are one of the best in baseball. They have done it through FA and the farm. But, more farm than FA. The Werth contract still has me scratching my head though lol

                    • http://casualcubsfan.blogger.com hansman1982

                      I would gladly trade 0-162 for the next two years to have the team they have (sans Werth) and guess how they did it….

                      BY SUCKING IT UP FOR A COUPLE OF YEARS TO BUILD A GREAT FARM SYSTEM!!!!!!

                • chirogerg

                  The 2011 Cardinals

  • Sparks

    Count me with the Trolls! I agree with Jeff andRich. There is no reason we cannot have a better team. I do not say we should have gone after the big name free agents, but I believe we could have found some pitchers better than we did. Count me among the Trolls, I guess.

  • paul

    the CUBS will win by 2014 and never look back this is a good FO and will win!

    • Jeff L

      Good Paul so your down with a horrible 2013 and a i pray and hope we will be decent in 2014 LOL… No wonder fans across the league call us fans as losers.

      • Flashfire

        Instead of insulting, answer this question: how do you build up a minor league system that started close to completely barren — last year was a good one — while winning 85 games under the new CBA. Give specifics as much as possible.

        • http://bleachernation loyal100more

          really no example is suitable here, because of the new CBA. as a fan i have to believe the reason ricketts brought in epstien was because he DOES want to win. thats the way i take it any way. the plaing field may be the same but the rules have changed. the whole notion of spending in FA to make your team better, well i have to believe that if your gonna have success using that formula you firstly need the FA class to HAVE some impact FA. the FA class of 13 is a bunch of non-impact types that are gonna get huge contracts because they are all thats availible. the farm looks MUCH better than it did a year ago, it looks so much better that its a great piece of evidence to support the “new plan” and its execution.lastly, if your a fan, or you call yourself a fan YOU DONT BOYCOTT YOUR TEAM!!!! show your displeasure but always have the teams back! i will never boycott this team, it hasnt won in over 100 years…FINE! if you cant have FAITH, and be willing to try ANYTHING, go root for the yankees. i mean shit were cub fans… our day will come it will be GLORIOUS and i really believe this FO will be the guys that deliver the goods. rebuilding is tough, having no plan is tougher, boycotting YOUR team is TREASON! so dont do it.

  • Stu

    OK, let’s take the new management by their word. Didn’t they say in the beginning of the year there would be a new “CUBS WAY” of playing the game? Fundamentals, defense, etc.

    What I saw yesterday was a team that is not disciplined. Rizzo throws a lollipop to Barney which takes him off the bag. The Giants score 2 runs after that. Clevenger was careless with an in the dirt ball with a guy on 3rd base and 2 out. The runner scores. BJax misses cutoff guys.

    What gives? Where is the manager outrage when this is a learning opportunity for the kids?
    You can forgive losses in which the other team is just better athletically. Not yesterday.

    It will probably take a couple more years of this before the lovefest with THEO/SVEUM is over.

    • http://bleachernation loyal100more

      the team has vastly improved defensively! these are friggin KIDS, and everyone has bad days! oh yea…your teams complexion doesnt go from ugly to beautiful in one year. you improve and your going in the right direction…we did that. look at the numbers.

      • Carew

        Amen

  • crazyhorse

    Chris Bosio that whole insert was funny and if its true Chris Bosio should be fired as was Hill.
    To be fair with Chris Bosio the talent the Cubs gave him this year was poor and some might want to give Bosio a Theo love hugging pass. Earlier in the year, many Cub fans thought the pitching corp that Cubs instilled on its baseball team would optimistically perform well and they have not. Who is to blame ?

    Do we blame the front office ? Do we blame the pitching Coach or do we simply blame the players?

    I blame the players, and to a degree the coaching staff. The Cubs did bring in pitchers that had a potential to succeed ( it would be stupid to sign someone that did not).

    If Hill had a hard time in preparing games with Cubs pitchers than Who was responsible to get those players ready.

  • notcubbiewubbie

    so sick of cub fans who want to go back to the jim hendry way of doing things.just be good enough to contend in a weak didvision. im 60 years old been waiting a long time for someone to have the balls to actually try to fix this thing the right way. free agency doesn’t get you shit. only if you r a world series contender you add the final pieces to get you over the hump MAYBE!!!!!!!!!! these spoiled cubfans who demand to win a few games instead of building it the right way. don’t know how many more seasons i have left but i’m willing to gamble a few to finally get the job done. look at the the yankees when they won multiple championships the core of that team was home grown adding a few trades and free agents. enough of this bullshit we can’t have a couple of rebuilding years because i want to go to the games and talk on my cellphone and be entertained. go theo jed and mr. ricketts please don’t give in to yuppy scumbag pressure. build a team for many years to come whether i’m here or my kids and grandkids get to watch. amen have a great labor day and oh yea go cubs go.

    • Flashfire

      “only if you r a world series contender you add the final pieces to get you over the hump MAYBE!!!!!!!!!!”

      This is exactly right. And how Theo will likely use FA. Probably for pitchers, given how barren we are there. But until we have more than Castro, Rizzo, and a bunch of other guys, it doesn’t make sense. When Baez and Soler are ready, then we’re in business.

      • Jeff L

        Flash your logic is still messed up… From 1992 to 1994 the Yankees still had the top 3 payrolls in the league!!! Please give me a real example lol. Even in 1992 they had the 6th highest payroll and shot up to 3 the next year. After that they were always top 2… The Cubs on the other hand are on the lower half. The Yanks did it with money like all teams. … Please Flash your so passionate about the Cubs doing it through the draft only give me an example!!!!

        • Flashfire

          you add the final pieces to get you over the hump

          your so passionate about the Cubs doing it through the draft only

          You are only hearing what you want to hear. This is literally pointless. I’m going to take Brett’s advice and give it a rest.

          • Jeff L

            Flash the thing is you dont strip your team down to 0 and start from scratch. The Yankees stripped down a little bit then added added added. Your so gun ho on building from within that you can’t give me any examples where this had worked. The thing is this is what Cubs fans should be talking about.

            • Flashfire

              Jeff: “Take that, strawman. And that. And that. And that. And that.”

            • chirogerg

              2011 Cardinals

            • http://casualcubsfan.blogger.com hansman1982

              Current Nationals team
              Rangers
              Giants a couple years back
              A’s this year
              Marlins did it twice

              Everyone loves to talk about the Yankees free agent spending yet, out of the top ten contracts (per Cots) they have 3 players acquired through free agency, 3 through their farm system and 4 through trades.

              Even the God-Almighty-May-They-Rest-In-Peace-Sweet-Baby-Jesus Yankees don’t build their team through free agency alone. Hell, even when you go down through their entire 40-man (or whatever Cots lists) it is shockingly even across the board.

              This farm system was gutted after a trade for a #2 pitcher – teams like the Yankees are gutted after they trade for Alex Rodriguez. This team desperatly NEEDS a strong farm system. The quickest, easiest way to get a strong farm system is to suck it up for a couple years. Sell off the guys you don’t think will amount to anything, extend those who do amount to something and then when someone like CC Sabathia comes along or if one of Baez, Almora, Soler becomes a beast you can afford to keep them.

              The one thing that everyone fails to see when they talk of rebuilding is that the teams who are in perennial rebuild mode can never afford to hang on to their talent. Well the Cubs can.

              Remember, every guy in the HoF was a prospect at some point.

  • Stu

    Yes, keep the revenue stream coming. We have another koolaid drinker. We have to be bad to be good. LOL,

    • Flashfire

      Same question as above; how do you build up a minor league system that started close to completely barren — last year was a good one — while winning 85 games under the new CBA. Give specifics as much as possible.

  • Stu

    By bringing in castoffs from other organizations, right? Oh, and if you do have a player who is starting to perform, trade him immediately for someone who has a “high ceiling”.

    • Flashfire

      Like we did with Rizzo, and Castro, and Shark, and Barney.

  • Stu

    And those “high ceiling” guys always work out.

  • Stu

    Yes, I realize that Rizzo, Castro and Barney are ready to be inducted in the HOF by the Koolaid drinkers.

    Shark was drafted by Hendry, right?

    • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

      Hyperbole, stereotypes about fandom, and unthinking labels. You would be better served offering actual thoughts.

      • http://bleachernation loyal100more

        heres a thought… you dont boycott your team!!! thats treason. id expect that from sox fans but not the cubbie faithful. let there be no more talk of it!

  • Rich

    I realize the Cubs are putting a lot of money in the draft and front office.
    But as u draft better and develop better, does that mean you cannot sign free agents for the big club?

    I’m fine with developing players of and drafting but baseball drafts seem to be a lot different than other sports when you pick early.

    If Soler and Almora and whomever are going to develop into good major leaguers then great.
    But I hope that “if” after next season we are seeing progress to the plan.

    This entire Jim Hendry era bashing is confusing. I think he gave the Cubs more of an opportunity to get to the playoffs then most teams prior to him.

    I am all for building an organization and foundation but many of you assume that it will happen just because that’s the plan

    Example : Pie Choi Patterson Cunningham Orie etc
    Bad examples maybe but how many core home grown talent do u need
    before you spend on the holes??

    • chirogerg

      They are signing free agents even now, but ideally, I’d like to have a 3SP, 6 position player, and entire bullpen homegrown. That leaves you able to sign or trade for a couple more high end starters and a position player or two. That is ideal.

    • John

      You do realize that improving our minor league program means more that just drafting, yes? And that the Cubs have gone cheap across the board developmentally until now? Epstein and co. are revamping the entire program, so that the players that we do draft/sign are also developed properly (see the red sox).

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

    I just want to add, I like Kool-Aid. Specifically lemon lime and grape.

    nbd, js

  • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

    By the way, if some of you keep blowing your wad on the offseason/2013/what’s the right direction discussion in September, you’re really going to want to rip your hair out come October and November.

    Give yourself permission to relax for a few weeks.

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

      Good thing I shave my head.

    • Jeff L

      Brett,

      Let me ask you do you think a formula of only working through the draft. Not spending on big free agents such as Zach Greinke is a formula for success. If you do agree please give me an example a precedent of a team where this actually worked. Now I’m not talking about a team that made the playoffs but actually won a WS. I believe that in this league if your not willing to be spend big money in free agency you will not give yourself an opportunity to win big in this league.

      • Chris

        My earlier argument is not that I don’t think they should spend big money, because I do. My argument is they aren’t ready to spend big money. Just like Soriano wasn’t the missing piece earlier, and thus wasn’t worth the wasted dollars spend on that contract, if they signed Greinke in the offseason, he wouldn’t be the missing piece that leads to a WS win. Now flash forward a few years. If there is a core in place, be it by trade or through the system, and Felix Hernandez is a pitcher that could be the missing piece, they better overpay to get him. One WS is worth a bad contract or 5. But giving out bad contracts now just to get to .500 is foolish.

      • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

        I think that, in this world, the extremes rarely work. So, I think the answer to your question is an obvious no, I don’t think tanking and drafting high is the “only” way to win. Anyone who tells you it is hasn’t been paying attention. Just as anyone who tells you that signing a bunch of big-name free agents is the “only” way to win is similarly misguided. I think if folks stop pissing back and forth at each other, they’d realize they all agree on these basic tenets.

        High draft picks help the process because they provide tradable assets, and inexpensive big league regulars – sometimes very good ones. Ditto prospects in trade. Even the highest spending teams need cost-controlled players to be competitive. The Cubs have very few right now, and it is therefore reasonable to suggest that it’s too early for them to go hog wild on the tip-toppiest of free agents (frankly, there aren’t a lot of good ones this Winter). There are free agents to be pursued this Winter, and they are guys like Paul Maholm – they provide value on the field in 2013, but they also provide potential trade value if, as expected, the Cubs need another year of development before they’re truly ready to be competitive.

  • Rich

    I’ve got plenty of hair and tons of energy on the Cubs
    I’ve waited this long
    I’m patient

  • Featherstone

    Couple things to say-

    First: Flashfire, I appreciate your comments and your insight. You have solidly constructed arguments with sound logic and evidence to back it up. Thank you for your effort spent here.

    Second: If we need to look at a team that tore it down to the studs and is now thriving look no further than this year’s Nationals. Having the number one overall draft pick in 2009/10 with top 10 picks in 08 and 11 allowed them to be where they are today. What did they do with those picks you might ask? Well they drafted a ToR starter in Strasberg, an extremely exciting centerfielder in Harper, and more importantly they stocked their farm system so they could then make a trade for Gio Gonzalez (3.10 ERA/1.147 WHIP/2.70 SO/BB ratio) who slotted perfectly as their number 2 starter behind Strasberg. They suffered 2 atrocious years to be where they are today where they are legitimate contenders to make deep playoff runs not only this year, but for at least 5 more years to come given the age of their core.

    The whole point of this exercise is that the Cubs need to stock their farm system by suffering a couple bad years to allow them to trade for pieces they cant fill in FA or from within. It has been done in the past and given the state of our team now, its the best way to win for the future.

  • Rich

    Re: the Nationals
    This is Bryce Harper’s first year and Starsburgh is prob a rare pick that was more advanced and ready to be a star.
    Can someone tell me who else on their roster is gone ground.
    Obviously the Gio trade was a solid move.
    Who else is home grown or used for trades.
    I see a lot of free agents too.

    • Featherstone

      Because David price of the rays was also a rare pick too? (Hint he was drafted 1st overall) You see a lot of free agents? Name them.

    • chirogerg

      Espinosa, Bernadina, Desmond, Lannan, Storen, Mattheus, Clippard, ZIMMERMAN, Morse.
      So, in conclusion, EVERYONE but Werth and LaRoche

      • chirogerg

        And SP Zimmermann and Henry Rodriguez

    • Featherstone

      Because our good friend Rich seems to be having a bit of trouble naming the multitude of FA’s that reside on the Nationals roster, I will help him out here a bit.

      Starting Lineup:
      Jayson Werth (FA 7years/ 126mil. I wont even comment on this albatross of a contract)
      Bryce Harper (Drafted 1st overall 2010 Draft. Age 19!)
      Ryan Zimmerman (Drafted 4th overall 2005 draft)
      Adam Laroche (FA 2years/ 15mil. Good value contract)
      Mike Morse (Acquired via trade from Mariners after initially clearing waivers)
      Ian Desmond (Drafted 3rd round of 2004 draft)
      Danny Espinosa (Drafted 3rd round of 2008 draft)
      Kurt Suzuki (Acquired via trade from Athletics for a minor league catcher)

      Pitching Rotation:
      Stephen Strasberg (Drafted 1st overall 2009 draft)
      Gio Gonzalez (Acquired via trade from Athletics for a large prospect package)
      Jordan Zimmerman (Drafted 2nd round 2007 draft)
      Ross Detwiler (Drafted 6th overall 2007 draft)
      Edwin Jackson(FA 1year/11mil)

      Closer:
      Tyler Clippard (Acquired via trade from Yankees)

      So in all we have a grand total of 3 FAs in the starting lineup, pitching rotation, and closer role. Wow, that sure is a team built on the backs of FAs /sarcasm.

      In finality, your arguments hold zero water Rich, Jeff L, and the rest of you misinformed fans, internet trolls, and just plain idiots. Go back from whence you came.

  • http://bleachernation loyal100more

    has everyone gone mad? we’re in year one and im hearing “boycott the team, this isnt working, lets sign youk and swisher( WHAT!).

    • Martin

      Those are separate points.

      Basically, this team is at least 2, and probably 3, years away from it’s next set of impact players coming from the farm system. After that, they’d still be 2-3 more years before they become (we hope) impact players. Essentially, you’re talking about 2017 at the earliest.

      There is little that can be done in the meantime, so the options are to sign admittedly average to slightly above average FAs and see if you can sneak into the postseason, or wait the 5-7 years and count on the additional money allotted in the FA pool and the slightly higher draft picks to offset the issue.

      The issues facing the Cubs are that: (1) the 2013 draft is seen by a number of people to be even weaker than the weak 2012 draft, (2) the Cubs will never receive $$ in the competitive balance lottery, and (3) impact FAs under 30 are going to be virtually nonexistent for the next 3-5 years, as teams are finding it cost beneficial to sign their young players to team-friendly deals prior to FA.

      So if the Cubs aren’t going to contend for the next 3-5 years with the talent they currently have on the team, my sense is that they either (a) remain one of the 2-3 worst teams in baseball for that entire time, or (b) sign mediocre Free Agents to deals that expire in coordination with the growth of the young players currently in the system.

      My suggestion had nothing to do with “boycotting the team,” or anything of that nature. It had to do with the reality of where they are in terms of organizational development and what the realistic options are from here.

      • John

        Martin– I don’t think you’re being grouped with the rest– your posts are thoughtful, and you seem to have a grasp for the state we’re in right now. I disagree with your fix, but I would not be surprised to see some of your ideas pushed by the front office (especially the pitching). Unlike some of the others, you are not being intentionally obtuse.

  • http://bleachernation loyal100more

    okay yea…lets sign youk, and swisher so everyone can complain about what a bad idea that was. i mean you can see thats bad from a mile away…hold on to the cash, lets have another smart off season… believe it or not cub fans, this season has bore much fruit. no relief for the big club, but hey fruit is fruit.

  • Rich

    Featherstone

    Your post was so good until u started the insults
    I was sincere in my question rearding the Nationals and free agents or drafts

    Good post initially

    But anytime u care to meet in person to discuss baseball
    Please let me know where

    • Featherstone

      No insults intended unless you count yourself to be an internet troll or an idiot. I do take offense to the posters, yourself included, that spout information without facts behind them. You said you saw a lot of FA’s on the Nationals Roster, I disagreed and posted facts contrary to your point. We can disagree with each other and that’s fine, but that doesn’t mean you’re not wrong on your last point.

      P.S. Im in the near west side of Chicago and if you ever want to debate the future of North side baseball we can meet up in the bleachers sometime over a few old styles.

  • Rich

    We all want the Cubs to win the world series and be champs.
    A different opinion does not equate trolling

  • http://bleachernation.com RicoSanto

    Volstad has pitched better than Wood the last 4 starts………. Travis Wood is a good hitter should have pinch hit for Vitters. Look for Vitterrs to be traded in the off-season

    • Flashfire

      Who would want him?

  • http://bleachernation loyal100more

    i see ALOT of half way decent, low cost FA. this is our kind of market… lots of good potential, guys that will sign team friendly deals, and one year deals. plenty of decent arms to stop gap our rotation and maybe get some trade value at the deadline. at a glance, there are not alot of big time guys. however there are quite a few good gamble patch work guys that could help our club improve.

  • http://bleachernation loyal100more

    cody ross, luke scott,russel martin…would all potentialy come cheap, and be great pick ups. plenty of rotation and bullpen parts to be had at a bargain.

    • DocPeterWimsey

      Ross is a 4th OFer. Scott has a 4th OFer’s bat without a 4th OFer’s glove. Martin has one good month a year. Bullpen guys pitch so few innings every year that a good 2012 does not make a good 2013 all that probable.

      In short, there really will not be much on the FA market that will help the Cubs next year.

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