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Stephen Bruno (Scott McDaniel/Boise Hawks)

The Wife and I are headed on a mini-vacation to Nashville today/this weekend, so I’ll likely be in and out. You should see normal posting, though.

  • As expected, Bob Brenly is headed to the Diamondbacks’ booth, where he’s been before, and where he was the team’s manager when they won the World Series in 2001. Who knows the precise reason for the move, but hopefully Bob is happy, and has a good experience in Phoenix. He’ll once again have a heck of a play-by-play man by his side, with ESPN’s Steve Berthiaume heading to the booth.
  • A great piece on Cubs prospect Stephen Bruno, who won the Northwest League’s batting title (he crushed the field) in his professional debut after a successful career at Virginia. The focus is on his versatility, which now includes some time behind the plate (in practice). He is among the most intriguing prospects going into 2013, not necessarily because he is one of the organization’s top prospects, but because it’s difficult to know just how high his ceiling might be. Although he was a college draftee taken in the latter half of the top 10 rounds, the Cubs paid him above slot to get him to sign. His numbers in college were huge, but his stature is not. College hitters, in particular, tend to do well in short season ball right out of school, but Bruno absolutely killed it (of qualifiers, he led the league in average, OBP, and OPS … by more than 50 points!). Bruno played all over defensively, which is both good and bad (versatility is good, but it suggests that he isn’t a quality defender at any one position). He turns 22 next month, so you can expect that he’ll start 2012 at least in High-A Daytona. It’s possible the Cubs could even challenge him all the way up at AA. Like I said – just an intriguing kid to watch in 2013.
  • Paul Sullivan continues the positional review with a look at the Cubs’ bench. It’s not the most important area on the roster, but, man, it looks grisly.
  • Doug Padilla looks at center field, and notes that he’s not expecting the position to be addressed this offseason, given the presence of David DeJesus and Tony Campana, with Brett Jackson in the waiting. I mean, I guess he’s assuming right field is going to be the spot explored for upgrade, but, whether it’s DeJesus in center and an addition in right, or vice versa, something needs to change.
  • And then there were none: the Tribune is the last major Chicago publication to go behind some kind of paywall, which will happen on November 1. They hinted at it when they started requiring folks to sign up for a free account to read certain articles a few months ago. The system is similar to others – a handful of free views per month, after which you have to pay ($15 per month, or free if you get a dead tree subscription) – though some of their content will remain free. It’s kind of hard to tell what exactly remains free and what becomes premium, but I guess we’ll see in a couple weeks. I’m sure I’ll still read, but I’d be lying if I said that the paywalls at the Sun-Times and Daily Herald didn’t negatively impact the amount of time I spent on those sites. That said, I’ll never complain about companies charging for their product – it costs money to investigate and report the news, and I promise you, we don’t want these enterprises going totally out of business. They are important.
  • The MLBullets at BCB try very hard not to revel in the Yankees’ sweep (but are openly bummed about the Cardinals’ 3-1 NLCS lead).
  • Sweetjamesjones

    Brett,

    Dude, have fun in Nashville. Anywhere in particular that you are going to sightsee?

    • ron

      If is not Savannah Tea Company I will be disappointed!

  • Stinky Pete

    Stephen Bruno sounds a lot like Corey Wimberly. Not saying Bruno can’t achieve more success, just noting the similarity.

  • Stinky Pete

    Oh, yeah, and Bruno kind of reminds me of “Squints” in that picture…

    • http://www.bleachernation.com ichabod

      nice reference stinky

  • Darren

    I’ve been in Nashville for 17 years now. It’s a great city with lots of things to see and do!

  • Njriv

    Wow, Bob Brenly and Steve Berthiaume, sounds like one hell of a duo.

    • Ryan

      Yeah, pretty jealous honestly haha

  • Richard Nose

    Wow, what a duo, Berthiaume and Brenly.

  • http://www.justinjabs.com/blog/ justinjabs

    Yeah, newspaper are important. Paywalls suck though. The college paper I work at is trying to come up with different ways to stay afloat.

    • http://www.justinjabs.com/blog/ justinjabs

      newspapers*

      • hansman1982

        English class are important two!

  • http://www.bleachernation.com Luke

    I’m not so sure the Cubs will jump Bruno straight to Daytona just because of his age. He could easily spend 100+ ABs in Kane County first, and then move up when he’s shown he can handle the Midwest League. There is no reason to rush a guy just because of his age, anymore than there is to hold a guy back just because of his age.

    I would like to see the Cubs turn him into a catcher. The system is crowded with second basemen (Bruno’s current most likely home), but is a little thin on good hitting catchers.

    • ssckelley

      A 5’9 165 lb catcher? I remember thinking how small Chadd Krist looked when I seen him in action but Bruno would be even smaller than him.

      • http://www.bleachernation.com Luke

        If he can hit .290/.375/.440 in the majors, I’d take him as a catcher. Conventional wisdom makes catcher more of a sluggers position, but OPS is OPS. I’ll take it where I can get it.

        • http://www.viewfromthebleachers.com Norm

          If he can hit 290/375/440 in the majors, I’ll take him anywhere.
          That’s a bit optimistic, don’t you think?

          • http://www.bleachernation.com Luke

            Oh, it’s more than a bit optimistic. I’d say that’s just about the best case scenario with Bruno.

  • mudge

    Bruno is to the Cubs as the Sistine chapel was to Michelangelo – a high ceiling prospect.

    • http://www.bleachernation.com Luke

      Actually, I’m not sure Bruno has that high of a ceiling. His basement, on the other hand, looks like it is quite high, at least right now.

  • True(ly) Blue

    It seems strange to me that a Cub fan wouldn’t want the Cardinals (or any other team in our division) to win the World series if the Cubs can’t do it. I root for the Cubs, da Bears, the Bulls and Illinois (getting harder) first and then division teams and finally league teams against other division and league teams. My friends don’t all agree with me but several, over the years have come to agree with my thinking.

    • EvenBetterNewsV2.0

      I disagree with you. I hope the Cardinal lose 10-0 in four straight games.

    • TWC

      Well, kiddo, for what it’s worth, the other teams in the division are usually the LAST teams I’ll root for if my team gets eliminated. Why on earth do you want your arch foes to succeed? I’d rather Busch Stadium drop into the fiery pits of hell.

      • wilbur

        Why are you being so evasive, what do you really think about the Cardinals?

        • TWC

          Heh.

      • Brian

        Hades would fall in love with the Golden Horseshoe they seem to have and send them right back up to torment all of us some more.

    • hardtop

      oh my god! my second favorite team is whoever is playing the cardinals, the packers, or the red wings. rivalries are developed over a long period of time my friend, and to ignore them is to ignore your own teams history. you cant tell me you actually route for the packers? Aaron Rodgers and the “state farm strap-on”? really? its the biggest rivalry in football man! you cannot love the bears and route for the packers, under any circumstances…ever. period.
      when i grew up, i thought Bob Gibson’s first name was “f#*kin'”. Really, I never heard his name uttered with out the “f-word” preceding it.
      next thing you know you’ll be telling us you route for the white sox because they play in Chicago!?!?!?

    • Frank

      It’s not strange if you hate them.

  • Sweetjamesjones

    Its very strange that you would want to root for the Cardinals. Listen, I dont mind the Pirates or Houston, but the Reds (ugh), Brewers (herpes ugh), and then the Cardinals (fucking ugh) can go to hell.

    • TWC

      This NLCS is painful, painful for me. The local team (who I loathe) is playing the Cards… do I put up with all the gleeful neighbors (well, not so gleeful today), or another Cards win?

      Meh. Go Tigers.

  • TWC

    The Wife and I are headed on a mini-vacation to Nashville today/this weekend…

    I highly recommend a stop at the Savannah Tea Company, owned and run by BN-er Ron & wife.

    • ron

      Ha, that is awesome, thanks TWC, I should have read the comments first.

      • TWC

        Heck yeah, Ronaldo! The pics/blog from @SavanahTeaCo are consistently, supremely awesome. I can’t wait for your second location — in HMB, CA — to open.

        • Ron

          Thanks, I will pass the compliment along. We are not sure how much traffic that generates but the wife loves it and Melissa, who runs the blog, is rediculously talented.

  • Fastball

    go to the Trailer Park Bar downtown in the main strip of bars and clubs. It’s a fun place. Great bands play there nightly. It is very interesting.

  • Fastball

    There is a great Fustion Sushi Place right downtown also. The Saki Bombs are a lot of fun. They have a tradition on how they do them and the whole place starts chanting Saki Bomb. You have to be there I suppose. Great Fun. NashVegas is a blast.

  • Fastball

    If I was Theo I would sign Garza to an extension for at least 2 years minimum. His trade leverage will get worse once the season starts as Garza will become a rental like Dumpster. Even with the ability to offer him a deal by an acquiring team for a 1st round pick he becomes less desirable and the prospects coming back will be less to our liking.
    If we extend him he becomes more desirable under contract in my opinion. The risk is his arm is AFU’d and he needs surgery. I am skeptical about his arm and that he hasn’t picked up a ball. If there is damage to his elbow all the rest in the world won’t fix it. The issue will resurface sooner than later. Then we are stuck and screwed at the same time.

  • oso

    I had the opportunity to see a bit of Boise baseball this summer. (fun team) Bruno is a heads up player and is serviceable at shortstop so i can see him progressing as a utility guy. In my opinion he was the better of the two shortstops.

    Shoulders fits the mold of a true outcome hitter. He is popular with teammates and fans, but has a very long swing. It would be cool to see him progress but the hole in his swing is huge.

    btw Amaya is for realsies! By far the best player on the team IMO.

  • kb

    Ace!
    You’re in Nashville? I wish I was playing this weekend. Anyway, if you and your wife need any help, guidance, a place to stay, whatever, please PM me, or call if you have my number.

    • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

      Kabes! We’re staying with friends, but I’ll let you know if/when we’re going out tonight or tomorrow (I know nothing of the plans).

    • Rocky Top Cub

      I wouldnt mind getting together with Cubs fans to watch games. Do you know of anywhere in nashville to do that?

  • Rocky Top Cub

    Brett, or anyone on the board that visits Nashville:

    Nashville has been my home since 1989. Feel free to email me if you need some places to go. Bluebird Cafe in green hills is a cool place to go for seeing up and coming country music writers and singers. several great restaurants on westend ave..(Bricktops, Whiskey kitchen, Wildhourse saloon, Demos)

  • nkniacc13

    Giants to put Lincecum on the trade block. Who is more likely traded Justin Upton or Lincecum?

    • calicubsfan007

      @nkiacc13: Hmmmm….. I could see Lincecum being traded because it seems like the Giants are moving on from him. I could see Upton traded also. Both see highly unlikely to be traded, due to the ridiculous asking prices. Something tells me it will be Upton. Just a gut feeling.

      • calicubsfan007

        Sorry. I meant nkniacc13.

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