Happy Halloween, kiddies. Remember: let an adult check your candy first. And if they take a little for themselves, well, that’s just the cost of doing business. Best Halloween candy? For me, it’s too close to call between the Take Five bar and the Nutrageous.

  • Justin Germano has refused his assignment to AAA Iowa, and is now a free agent. I mentioned last week when the Cubs outrighted a number of players off the 40-man roster that some of the more veteran types (who’ve accumulated a certain amount of service time, or who have been outrighted once before in their career) might elect to refuse the assignment, as Manny Corpas did. Germano, 30, had a weak stretch to close the year in the Cubs rotation after a decent start. In all, he made 12 starts with the Cubs, putting up a 6.75 ERA and a 1.563 WHIP (2.37 K/BB) over his time with the Cubs. He’ll look for a minor league deal with another team this offseason (or possibly return to the Cubs) where he feels he’ll have a shot to break back through to the bigs next year.
  • Darwin Barney was ever humble when interviewed about his first Gold Glove last night, while still offering genuine excitement. “You don’t expect to pass a guy like Brandon Phillips,” Barney said. “He’s exceptional at what he does. He was the best in the game for a long time, and I can’t sit here and say I’m better than him or anything like that. I had a good season and I think either of us could’ve won it. Fortunately for me, I did. He very easily could have won just as easily as I could.”
  • Barney’s win is likely to continue to inspire Starlin Castro to become a better defender.
  • Although the Cubs have added Derek Johnson as the new minor league pitching coordinator, they’re still looking for a hitting counterpart. That role used to be filled by James Rowson, who is now the Cubs’ hitting coach. Tom Beyers filled in for Rowson, but he’ll be a minor league hitting coach next year.
  • The Cubs just lost (or let go?) one of their top international scouts. Tim Kissner has departed as a crosschecker with the Cubs in favor of the Director of International Operations job with the Mariners. Given all the turnover of late, it’s fair to guess that this departure was mutual, though it’s obviously a promotion. Kissner was involved in the Cubs’ efforts in the Pacific Rim.
  • Doug Padilla says all indications are that Javier Baez will open the 2013 season in Daytona, which is what I’ve been expecting as well. He’ll have the opportunity to make the jump to AA early if he shows that he’s ready.
  • The MLBullets at BCB dig into the Gold Gloves, and a ridiculous article about the Giants’ success being built solely on the back of scouting.
  • Fishin Phil

    Do you think he otter be sticking his paw in there like that?

    • WGNstatic

      Otter than the risk that he might burn himself on the candle, what is the problem?

    • Ogyu

      Otter futility.

      • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

        I can’t think of any otter reason.

        • bluekoolaidaholic

          Well, his paw would get cold otterwise, but wait, what about his otter paw?

      • Richard Nose

        I’m shocked people as old as you guys know how to use the internet so well!!!

        • Ogyu

          Why, I otter . . .

          • Richard Nose

            hahahaha, lame old people jokes!!! jkjkjk, just bustin your junk.

            • Ogyu

              Thanks, Dicknose.

  • cubzforlife

    So Tim Kissner lost his Pacific Rim job?

    • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

      I don’t know if he “lost” it or if he left on his own – we just know that he’s moved on to a job with the Mariners.

    • hardtop

      rim job?

    • Katie

      Pacific rim job made me laugh out loud in a decidedly unladylike manner. Good hustle.

      • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

        Wow. I totally missed that one. Nicely played.

      • Richard Nose

        That sounds like exotic erotica.

      • Cubbie Blues

        It does roughly overlap the Ring of Fire.

      • Ben (BG2383)

        I am glad to know I wasn’t the only one that thought about that

  • terencem

    I’m going as Paul Maholm which is to say I’ll be wearing a Braves jersey 😉

  • wilbur

    When I read the headline about filthy animals I thought Brett had lost his patience with us …

  • North Side Irish

    Off topic and not exactly done deal, but interesting…

    @MattSpiegel670: Steve Stone just suggested, strongly, that it will be Eric Karros in the Cubs booth with @LenKasper next season.

    • Cubbie Blues

      If Stone wants him, we should run. Run far far away.

  • Kubphan82

    I’ll get my last few games with Javier at Daytona this coming year! Better believe I’m making several drives from Orlando early so as not to miss him… Should be a good Daytona team!

  • Dan

    Take 5???

    Come on man. I have to go with the Twix or Kit Kat (King-Sized of course).

    • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

      I do like those ones as well. The white chocolate Kit Kats (preferably orange for Halloween) are excellent.

    • MXB

      Take 5 all the way. The Take 5 white chocolate version (available back in the mid 2000’s) was like the most awesome addiction you can ever have!