Notre Dame is all about winning games by less than one score, and preferably on the last play at the goal line. I’m not sure what it says about me, but I think was pulling for them to win yesterday …

  • The Cubs have officially activated Matt Gara, Arodys Vizcaino, and Ian Stewart from the 60-day disabled list, as they were required to do. That puts the 40-man roster at 36. Presumably, the Cubs will make a move or two before they have to set their roster for purposes of the Rule 5 Draft (which deadline is later this month), but they’re going to need some room to add a player or two in order to protect them from the Rule 5. Since Ian Stewart is likely to be non-tendered, he’ll likely be de-rostered by then (which is not to say the Cubs might not try and re-sign him later in the offseason), which will bring the 40-man back down to 35.
  • Speaking of moves and deadlines and schedules, I don’t understand why this isn’t more widely reported, but General Manager Meetings will take place this week, starting on Tuesday in Palm Springs. The GM Meetings are best described as a mini-version of the Winter Meetings, where GMs will all come together (last year Theo went, too) to discuss various trade and signing opportunities with each other. If memory serves, there isn’t always a lot of action at the meetings, but the foundation for future moves is often laid down. These guys are always working the phones with each other, but to have all 30 teams represented in one place, all looking to discuss the moves they might want to make (without tipping their hands, obviously), means you’re going to have a lot of ideas generated – more than you’d see from a mere series of phone calls. I’d think we’d get some fresh rumors this week.
  • Tony Zych threw 0.2 innings in the Rising Stars AFL Game last night, and, if you look at his line, it was ugly – 0.2 innings, 3 hits, 1 ER, 1 K. But, the thing is, those three hits went as follows: a bunt single to Billy Hamilton (which the first baseman threw away), a ground ball up the middle on a drawn-in infield (by Hak-Ju Lee, who arguably could have been called out on strike three a couple pitches earlier), and a lazy fly ball that the right fielder couldn’t get to for some reason. He actually looked pretty good – mid-90s fastball, nice breaking curve, and a decent slider (which I saw only once). Everything was around the edges of the zone.
  • That extra TV money from the renegotiated national deals will not kick for teams until 2014 ($25 to $50 million extra per team, depending on the source), but it’s fair to wonder if teams will start spending more lavishly this year, rather than waiting for next year.
  • Speaking of that money, and the money some teams are getting from boosted local cable deals, is changing the financial landscape of the game, says Cubs GM Jed Hoyer. He says he has trouble projecting what things are going to look like in 2015, but obviously we’ve already seen teams locking up players long-term, when those players might otherwise have gone to free agency because a small market team couldn’t afford to keep them.
  • Just nine players received qualifying offers on Friday, which means the free agent market isn’t going to be nearly as disrupted by should-I-give-up-a-draft-pick type considerations as it had been in the era of offering arbitration. Not sure if any of these guys will be considered by the Cubs, but here is the list of free agents who would cost the Cubs their second round pick if they decided to sign them: Michael Bourn, Josh Hamilton, Hiroki Kuroda, Adam LaRoche, Kyle Lohse, David Ortiz (already re-signed) Rafael Soriano, Nick Swisher, and B.J. Upton.
  • Cubs1967

    maybe if jedai is in the same room an another GM he can make a trade and actually have it completed as opposed to “sort of”. maybe the cubs should ask the hotel if they could set-up a booth in the conference room so other GMs can meet with jedai one-on-one w/o the worries of phone or e-mail causing more embarassing moments.(which after 101 loss season, embarrasing is sort of debatable now anyway).

    • TonyP

      You are very negative, all the time dude.

      • MichiganGoat

        If the Cubs win the WS 1967 will be the first on here to complain about the win.

        • Dr. Percival Cox

          Took jedai six games to win the World Series. Brian Sabean and Walt Jocketty only needed four.

          • Kyle

            Why don’t we wait until Hoyer has actually GMed a playoff team before we start wondering what his WS might look like. Any year now…

    • Carew

      I’m gettin tired of your sh!+ man

    • hansman1982

      I was gonna just keep this over at the message board but it seems like you could really use it more than most of us:


    • EvenBetterNewsV2.0

      Never thought I would see the day…. But, my mother in law bitches less than Cubs1967.

    • DarthHater

      maybe if jedai is in the same room an another GM he can make a trade and actually have it completed as opposed to “sort of”. maybe the cubs should ask the hotel if they could set-up a booth in the conference room so other GMs can meet with jedai one-on-one w/o the worries of phone or e-mail causing more embarassing moments.

      Maybe if you took your head out of your ass, everything wouldn’t look like shit.

    • Frank

      Please, please, please, please, PLEEEEAAASSSSEEE–Shut up.

  • Jimmy james

    The media is where the embarrassment is….

    • Cubs1967

      the media caused the cubs to lose 101 games?

      the media called marmol and said you are traded so marmol tweeted he was?

      should not the cubs of said this is only a possibility; explained the advantages of going to the angels and said we’ll let you know, but after the dempster mess please don’t tweet or do dominican radio interviews?…… marmol did it anyway? come on, are you really that blind? somehwere jedai made it seem like a done deal. and it wasn’t. that’s theo problem; not the media.

      • Tommy

        So what is the big deal that a trade was announced and then didn’t happen? I guess I don’t see why this is the end of the world, cubs1967. Would you rather have them make a bad decision to avoid pulling out of a deal at the last minute?

        I swear – complaining about trades that happen because you don’t like the return you get is one thing, but now you’re complaining about a trade that didn’t happen. We’re no worse off than we were to begin with.

        • baldtaxguy

          Your question will remain unanswered, similar to all the others posed. Just a little person addicted to bitchin. This is not a person who cares passionately as a fan for his/her team. This is a person who is addicted to the simple act of bitching, and cannot get enough of it. Its no longer a voice that is the least bit relevant, even if something positive slips.

          Now its information control on potential trades, and trades that are not consummated, its been ticket prices relative to the 2012 season, its been Ricketts lining their pockets, its been Ricketts seeking taxpayer funding, its been Sam Zell structuring a tax advantaged sale transaction, its been the 2012 “tanking” when “every season counts,” its Ian Stewart, its Vineline losing subscribers….!

          Its everything…………………yet nothing……………….. but very entertaining.

          • Boogens

            BaldTaxGuy… you had me all the way… until you said “entertaining”. It’s tired and old and the “jedai” reference reminds me of the bitter and petty Steve Rosenbloom who calls Tom Ricketts “Fan boy owner” or something like that.

          • Cubs1967

            it’s hilarious how everyone gets so bent out of shape; you guys are easy and completely clueless regarding baseball. don’t like my posts don’t read them.
            the truth hurts. deal with it. the giants-cards-phils-red sox-yanks have won the majority of the last world series yet NONE of them try to build a dream team of prospects like theo thinks needs to be done. NO major market has ever lost on purpose to accumulate higher standing in the draft or more money for international FA. yet the team with NO championship since the model T Ford thinks it must.
            that cannot be defended. nor should fans deal with it…………unless you like losing which alot of you must.
            104 yrs and counting…………let the crybabies defend this BS some more.

            • MichiganGoat

              You got it IGNORE engaged…..

              • bbmoney

                Not sure why you lump the Giants in there. Let’s see….Cain….Lincecum…Bumgarner…Posey…Sandoval….lots of those guys were FA signings…. Oh crap that’s right, none of them were. Kind of the core of the team there which is I think what the Cubs are going for.

            • EvenBetterNewsV2.0

              I think its about time you change your tampon.

              • Brett

                There are better approaches than that.

            • The Show

              How does it feel no matter how you feel, no matter what you do the Cubs are not going to change their plans. It must kill you in the inside that no matter what you do the Cubs are going to rebuild and there is nothing you can do to change that. Why haven’t you been hired by a professional sports team? It seems like you know all about rebuilding an organization. The Ricketts must be so stupid to pick Theo and Jed to run the baseball side of the organization and not an old, cynical man with a stick up his ass to do it. The Cubs situation is different than any other team’s, they had a bunch of old, past their prime players, with heavy contracts on the books and pretty much no impact talent in the farm system. If we keep doing what Hendry was doing, nothing would change, I’m pretty sure the Cubs situation would be worse if he was still in charge. I know he made it to the playoffs, but that was only fine in 2007. In 2008 the bar was set much higher, to win the World Series, and he failed in 2008, 2009, 2010, and 2011. At some point there has to be a change. All in all, your opinion means nothing, literally nothing to the Cubs. They made a plan and they are sticking to it, they are not going to rush their plan and end up messing it all up to please people like you, then bam, we are back into the same position we were in, in the first place. No matter what happens the Cubs are rebuilding and there is nothing you can do to change that. Truth hurts, deal with it.

            • Luke

              “NO major market has ever lost on purpose to accumulate higher standing in the draft or more money for international FA”

              Where you not around for the White Flag trade?
              Or the Marlins fire sale v1.0?
              Or the past two years of the Houston Astros?
              Or the Dodgers before they were sold?

              Major market teams, like minor market teams, tank seasons on a regular basis and for a variety of reasons. The Cubs are in no way remarkable in this.

              Doesn’t mean it is the right approach, but it is by no means unusual.

              • Kyle

                There’s a big difference between tanking seasons during them and tanking them before the offseason has even started.

                Is Houston a major market team?

                • Luke

                  Houston is the fourth largest city in America. If they aren’t a major market, we might be defining the term just a little too narrowly.

                  • Kyle

                    City proper size is a pretty narrow definition of market.

                    If you go by city proper size, the Astros are 7th in baseball, and if you are cutting things into tiers, it’s pretty clear they are in the beginning of the next tier.

                    When you expand to include suburbs and outlying regions, depending on which method you prefer for defining that, Houston falls back into the middle of the pack.

                  • DoubleDown

                    Hold on Luke. Kyle has a legitimate point.

                    • Luke

                      The best fans don’t necessarily go with the largest market. Just because a market is not being fully tapped does not mean the market does not exist.


                      the Houston metro area checks in 5th in the US with a total population of about six million. We can draw the lines differently and push Houston as low as 9th (the lowest I found), but that requires some fairly wide drawing of lines (like sticking parts of West Virginia in the D.C-Baltimore metro area). The point remains that Houston should qualify as a major market.

                      Boston is often referred to as one of the most major markets of all major market teams, and they check in at number 10 with a population around 4.5 million.

                      That does not mean Houston is fulling tapping their market… far from it… but the failure of an organization to take advantage of its market does not negate the size of the market.

                      Unless we’re going to define “major market” as nothing but New York, LA, and Chicago, I think Houston has to be on the list. And I don’t agree that only those three are worth counting.

                  • DoubleDown

                    Well your going by population. Lets go by revenue to define the big market teams.


                    • Luke

                      Team revenue (and, by extension, market value) is dependent on the ability of a team to tap into the market it is in. A team that full takes advantage of a medium market will have more revenue than a team that alienates a large market. This is not a great indicator of market size.

                    • Internet Random

                      Well your going by population.

                      He’s going by market. Look the word up.

                      If you want to talk about “big revenue” teams, that’s all well and good, but let’s get our terms straight.

                  • DoubleDown

                    I’m sorry. Houston is not a “major” market team IMO. If the team does rank in the top 7, I discard them as a major market team. Why seven? Well, I really hold 5 as the cutoff, and then add 2 a curve. Yes, I know, I too generous.

                    • DoubleDown

                      *does not*

            • BT

              1967 you have almost no grasp whatsoever of what the Cubs are trying to accomplish. Yes the Cubs are trying to amass a stockpile of worthwhile prospects, but not at the expense of anything long term. They traded Dempster, who we can get back right now if we want, Marshall, who was a middle reliever, and Maholm, who they signed for a song. They aren’t intentionally losing, it’s a byproduct of getting rid of assets which are not going to help them long term. Grasping these simple concepts doesn’t make anyone a sycophant, or blind or a fanboy, just a realist. Complaining about a 101 loss season in an environment like this is so myopic, it’s astounding. Would a 95 loss season somehow make you feel better? A 90 loss season? How about if we came in 3rd, and only lost 87 games? Would that be “good”?

              The truth does hurt, which is why your posts are painless. They are, however, profoundly tiresome.

      • Dr. Percival Cox

        If this trade had gone through, next summer you would be coming on here; “stoopid jedai traded for a pitcher with a bad back.”

        The leaked deals were completely different. The Braves leaked the first one. So, really, you can only criticize the Cubs for the Marmol deal. In that case, the Braves did the same thing earlier in the year — so it does happen.

        • DocPeterWimsey

          It happens routinely these days. People talk just as much as they ever did, but what they say gets disseminated far, far more rapidly than it ever did. When trade talks involve a player with a NTC, then it’s going to be really easy for the news to be made public as the player has to be consulted. The FO can ask that player not to say anything: but the player is under no legal or ethical obligation to keep his mouth shut.

          • DoubleDown

            Absolutely correct. This is why I don’t understand eveyone jumping all over the FO. Makes no sense when, in fact, the Cubs did nothing wrong. Marmol can’t be blamed for anything. In his mind it was a done deal. If had kept his mouth shut, it would have not changed a thing. The deal was NOT happening.

      • Internet Random

        You guys need to learn to recognize trolling.

        • Internet Random

          ^^^ for reals, yo ^^^

      • Jimmy james

        Wasn’t talking about the team, just reporters confirming trades that are apparently not confirmed

  • LouCub

    Consider the social media as well, years ago it may have taken a few days for Marmols comments posted on twitter to reach any viable news outlet..This news spread like wildfire and the usual idiots like Jon Heyman jumped on it..remember he broke ther Dempster to the Braves trade as well

  • Kyle

    Point of order: I don’t think Stewart can be non-tendered until the Nov. 30 deadline, which would be too late for the Rule V deadline. Non-tendering isn’t an action a team takes, it’s just inaction. He can, however, be DFA’d by then.

    • Brett

      That is a perfect point of order. I will re-phrase.

  • BluBlud

    While I don’t know if it was a good trade or a bad one, I do know this front office has to do better with leaks. It’s happen twice in league in the last 3.5 months, and both times we were involved. This at least makes you wonder if Theo wasn’t the problem with leaks in Boston. Hope this doesn’t become a trend.

    Brett, if the Cubs sign both Lohse and Upton, what kind of picks would they be forced to give up, considering their first founder is protected. Those 2 would be my first priority.

    • DocPeterWimsey

      This at least makes you wonder if Theo wasn’t the problem with leaks in Boston.

      Boston probably had no more leaks than any other team. It was just that a lot more eyes are on Boston than on most teams, so the leaks got disseminated all the faster.

      At any rate, neither “leak” here had anything to do with the Cubs’ FO. In Dempster’s case, it was people in the Braves’ FO who announced that the deal was done. In Marmol’s case, the player leaked the deal. As this player had an NTC, they had to consult him, and he was under zero obligation to keep his mouth shut.

      We need to get used to this: the bad old days are gone.

    • Chris

      For signing Lohse and Upton, they’d have to give up 2nd and 3rd round picks. The top pick is spared because it’s in the top 10.

      • Kyle

        Completely worth it. Even if we’re going with the whole “prospects are everything” model, you could probably flip either in a year or two for something better than those draft picks.

        • Dr. Percival Cox

          You’re going to have to sign both to more than 2-year contracts with a pretty high base salary (substantially more than $13 million). Those tend to be much harder to flip the year of the deal. So we could flip them — in 3 or 4 years. At that point, those draft picks might look a lot better.

          • Kyle

            I’m not sure about the salary. Upton rumors have been in the $12 million/year range. Not sure on Lohse.

            But even 3 or 4 years down the road, I’ll take my chances on the MLB players giving me a better trade return than the prospects I get in the 2nd and 3rd rounds.

            Just as a quick exercise, 10 years later, 18 of the 31 2002 2nd-round draft picks have either never appeared in the majors or have put up a negative bWAR. 26 of the 30 3rd-round picks have done so. So that’s roughly a 75% chance that a random 2nd or 3rd round pick becomes completely worthless.

            The odds that Upton or Lohse becomes completely worthless in 3 or 4 years is a lot slimmer.

            • Brett

              It is simply crazy to worry about a second round pick when discussing a (good) free agent signing.

              With all due love and respect.

              • Dr. Percival Cox

                My point was that signing these guys to 4 year contracts to flip them for prospects was not as big a gimme as Kyle implied.

                • BluBlud

                  I’m not trying to flip these guys for prospects, I’m trying to win with them. I over the sign a guy and flip him for prospects idea. Makes the organization look sleazy.

                  • DocPeterWimsey

                    In that case, Upton is the guy that could help. (Again, this is assuming that his “swing away!” spiral does not continue.) Lohse is not young, and he’s basically a pitcher who probably will help a currently good rotation become a very good rotation for a couple of years. The Yanks, Sox, Dodgers, etc., all are apt to make him much better offers than will the Cubs. After all, in a lot of ways Lohse is more valuable to those teams than he is to the Cubs.

                    As for Upton, I’m really torn on him.

                • Brett

                  Oh, I know. I wanted to emphasize the related point, because I think it is under-discussed.

                • Kyle

                  It’s not a gimme. Nothing in baseball is ever a gimme. It’s simply a better bet than non-first-round picks.

                  • Dr. Percival Cox

                    And now we change the argument. Your first quote:

                    you could probably flip either in a year or two for something better than those draft picks.


                    But even 3 or 4 years down the road, I’ll take my chances on the MLB players giving me a better trade return than the prospects I get in the 2nd and 3rd rounds.

                    And now you’re hammering on “gimme.” Fine, I’ll rephrase: it would be difficult to impossible to flip either Upton or Lohse a year after signing them to a 4 or 5 year deal as you originally proposed.

                    • Kyle

                      It’s not changing the argument to respond to specific posts.

                      If I had to take a futures bet on which would give me better prospects: a 2nd and 3rd round pick or the combined trade value of a market-value-signed Upton and Lohse, I would take the latter and it wouldn’t even be remotely close.

                      You then said ” So we could flip them — in 3 or 4 years. At that point, those draft picks might look a lot better.”

                      I disagree that they couldn’t be flipped more quickly than that, but I also think that even if you were correct on that point, the larger point would remain, because I’ll take the 2015/16 value of those players over the 2015/16 value of the 2nd/3rd round picks. It’s a little closer than the first proposition, but still not all that close.

                      I didn’t change my argument, I just chose not to actively disagree with one of your assertions for the sake of focusing on the more important point.

                      So, in summary: even if we stipulate that the next few years at the MLB level are meaningless and we only care about prospects, then I’d rank the value of the following in this order:

                      1) 2013/14 Upton/Lohse trade value
                      2) 2015/16 Upton/Lohse trade value
                      3) 2013 2nd/3rd round draft picks.

                      Now as to whether the “gimme” thing is important, it is. I choose my words reasonably carefully. When I say that something is “probably” more valuable, I say that for a good reason. There’s a chance it won’t be more valuable. Nothing is a guarantee in baseball. We can only play the odds with what we know at the time. If I’m taking my retirement money and looking to invest it, a secured bond is a probably a better bet than a roulette wheel. But it’s not a “gimme,” because there’s a chance the former could become more valuable. It’s just a bad bet.

                      Avoiding MLB talent because you want to save your 2nd and 3rd round picks is bad value, although there’s always a chance it works out for the better.

                    • Dr. Percival Cox

                      No, no, no. You’re not changing your argument at all. It’s just that — with carefully chosen words — the nine paragraphs above are the same as:

                      Completely worth it. Even if we’re going with the whole “prospects are everything” model, you could probably flip either in a year or two for something better than those draft picks.

                      You don’t fight fair. I know you think you do, but you don’t.

      • DocPeterWimsey

        I doubt that the Cubs pursue Lohse heavily: next season is his age 34 one. The Yanks, Sox, Dodgers or some other team that is a decent starter away from winning in 2013 will snag him.

        Upton could be the biggest high risk, high reward FA out there. The trends in his stats are those of a man nearly a decade older than he is: in particular, his swing rate has gone way up and his swing zone has really expanded. He’s only in his late 20’s and only a few years removed from much better playing, but any team signing him has to know that this has a higher than usual potential to wind up looking like a Figgins deal in 3-4 years. (On the other hand, if it’s just a fluke, then somebody’s going to look really good!)

        Of course, BJ would be a huge improvement over what the Cubs otherwise would run out there.

        • Jimmy James

          no thanks on lohse….anybody that comes here from stl stinks up the joint, i think it is part of their contract when with the cards (if and when you become a free agent you are offered the most money by the cubs and decide to sign with them you must play like a mediocre player until they release/trade you or we will break your mom/dad/wife/childs knee caps)

          • TonyP

            Wasn’t Edmonds pretty damn good in his short time with the Cubs?

            • North Side Irish

              Technically she came over from the Padres…but Princess Edmonds did put up some good numbers for the Cubs. Even if I choose to block it out of my memory.

              • Jimmy james

                See b/c he didn’t come straight from the cards the contract provision did not apply

            • DoubleDown

              Yes he was. One of my favorite baseball players. Played the game like it should be played.

      • Lou

        You’re assuming that Upton will not accept the qualifying offer. Who knows, with his declining production, he might?

      • farmerjon

        I’m curious, if they lose picks for signing free agents, do they lose draft money as well, or just the picks?

        • Brett

          You lose the money associated with (slotted for) the lost pick.

        • Luke

          The money goes with the pick. If a team loses one, it loses both.*

          *With the exception of the handful of picks that can be traded. The original owner of that team can only send up to 50% of the cap room for that pick with the pick in a trade.

          • Brett

            FYI: Apparently that 50% thing was an early rumor and is not true, says Jim Callis. You get the full amount.

            • Luke

              Good to know. That part never made a lot of sense to me anyway.

  • nkniacc13

    you would have to guess that this leak came from the cubs but i still think the dempster leak came from atl

    • Chris

      The leak was clearly Marmol. I can’t blame the guy, but maybe he could have waited to go on record with a Dominican reporter until the Cubs put out a release, making it official.

      • DoubleDown

        I’m sorry. I think the media has to take the punch in the nose for the Marmol fiasco. They never should have “ran” with story based on what Marmol said. THEY should have cofirmed the deal was completed before reporting it as such. It’s just astonishing that nobody stopped to ask how would Marmol know about Haren’s medical evaluation.

        • Kyle

          The next time there’s an impending Cubs deal, do you promise not to click on any of the links or rumors until the deal has been officially confirmed by an MLB or Cubs press release, at which point the reporters can be sure?

          Because unless everyone agrees to do that, reporters can’t do their jobs by waiting to confirm.

          • DocPeterWimsey

            The other thing is that the idea on what should be reported has changed. The attitude seems to be that the “facts” are player was traded or not traded. We don’t want that anymore. We want “it looks like player X is (not) going to be traded.” Those are facts, too. The processes behind the trades are just as interesting as the trades themselves.

            Indeed, suppose that this had been blacked out. Some people here would have been saying that the Cubs should have tried to land Haren before he became a free agent. Jed & Theo were idiots for not trying. How do we know that they didn’t try? Well, it didn’t happen: and we all know that if you “try,” then things happen, right?

            Well, they tried. It didn’t happen. There are reasons for that: the “things in baseball don’t happen only because the Cubs current GM is lazy” model really does not work!

        • DocPeterWimsey

          I’m sorry. I think the media has to take the punch in the nose for the Marmol fiasco.

          And what if the deal had gone through? The deal clearly got to the stage where most deals make it. The media then would have been reporting yesterday’s news. “A day later but fewer mistakes” is a pretty awful advertising slogan when media is trying to get you to use their product and not Joe “Here’s the latest word” Blogger.

          On a separate issue, this is not a “fiasco.” It’s a trade that fell apart at the last minute. That happens. There is a decent probability that we’ll be glad that it fell apart.

          • DoubleDown

            “The deal clearly got to the stage where most deals make it.”

            I’m sorry, I can’t buy that arguement for reporting a deal as “done”. There were a handfull that reported it as such. In fairness to Brett, he got it right. He never said the deal had been completed which was the proper approach.

            Analogy. If a field goal kicker has made 100% of his kicks for the season, should one believe his next kick is automatic. Of course not. You can only say the kick is good when the ball splits the uprights. That wouldn’t be reporting old news. That would be reporting accurate news.

            Also, for the record, I am glad this deal never happened for various reasons.

            • DocPeterWimsey

              That wouldn’t be reporting old news. That would be reporting accurate news.

              It is if 1000 bloggers already reported it as having happened.

              Remember, the media has to compete with “what is happening NOW!” This completely changes the rules. Here’s a better analogy: the old rules for media against media were basically like rules for calvary on calvary. Bloggers are machine gun nests. If media sticks to the old rules, then they are like a calvary charging into machine gun fire: i.e., doomed for quick extinction. Media might be doomed to extinction, anyway: but they’ll survive longer if they replace the horses and mount their own machine guns.

              • bluekoolaidaholic

                Did you mean cavalry, not Calvary, Mr. great intellect??

                • DocPeterWimsey

                  lol…. damn autocorrect! Yes, cavalry it is.

                  (Gotcha! Same typo, same autocorrect, but this time I got it….)

                • Internet Random

                  Tee hee hee.

                  By the by, my autocorrection capitalizes Calvary… which, of course, one would expect. Otherwise, it should be called auto-error.

                  • DoubleDown

                    I didn’t want to go there, but you caught it also. I do have to admit, I don’t know how one gets cavalry and Calvary mixed when using an auto-correct function

    • DocPeterWimsey

      i still think the dempster leak came from atl

      Given that it was documented to have come from them at the time, that seems like a sound suspicion!

      • TonyP


  • cubsnivy56

    It’s possible that translation may have been an issue in what Marmol thought he heard. They may have told him maybe but he understood done deal?

    • DoubleDown

      Absolutely. I am convinced Marmol, for whatever reason, was convinced the deal was completed.

  • mysterious4th

    I can really only see the cubs trying to get BJ Upton. The rest do not fit with their plans

  • Spoda17

    I would not take Upton…

    the trade discussion… I think we have blown this way out of proportion… The trade didn’t happen, it would have come out anyway, and who really cares the way it did. Marmol did nothing wrong, the FO did nothing wrong, and dare I say neither did the media. It is the way of the world nowadays. Information is instant. We have spent way too much time arguing about who is at fault on this topic… it is what it is…

  • Kurt

    Notre Dame needed a hometown honey bunny (you call them officials) to call a bogus pass interference on the 2nd to last TD on 4th down to continue a stopped drive near the end of the 4th quarter. With the officials assistance the drive ended in a TD instead of a turnover on downs.

    “Congrats” to the Catholic faithful that cheered wildly for the non-existent P.I.

    This undefeated Irish team that will probably lose by 30+ against Alabama or Oregon and get crushed at USC.

    N.D. is a smoke and mirrors SMU or Boise State from years past.

    Reminds me a lot of the San Diego Chargers that made hay against the AFC Worst only to show their true colors in the playoffs.

    • King Jeff

      Blah, Blah, Blah.

  • cubfanincardinalland

    Saw you guys talking about Upton. What about trading for Ellsbury and signing him to a long term deal. Sox are said to be wanting to move him. His career is weird, but he has talent.

    • JR

      I am all for Ellsbury. But the Red Sox would probably want Baez and more. Also, I am sure it would take pretty crazy money to extend Ellsbury. But yeah he is much better than Upton, even though he seems to get hurt a lot.

      • Jeremy

        They won’t get Baez for one year of Ellsbury. Plus with his injury history, doubt it takes any of our big three to get him. Would love to trade for him though.

        • JR

          Well the Red Sox aren’t the most rational team to deal with. I would be shocked if they would deal him to the Cubs for anything less than one of the top 3 prospects.

  • die hard

    Would like to see Swisher in a cub uniform like his dad. Hes a winner

    • Dougy D

      …and a douchebag.

  • GoCubsGo

    I still think a Marmol for Delgado trade would be great. Isnt that a fair deal for both sides?

  • Kyle

    “I don’t know what pack you’re looking at, but Houston is the 5th largest metropolitan area in the US. There’s no way to spin that, other than to note that the top four areas are home to 7 MLB teams. How many “large” market teams are there?

    Market size extends beyond metropolitan boundaries, as well.

    But even if we go with that, I’ll list the metro areas in millions, rounded to the nearest. you tell me where the logical cut-off between “large” and “mid” market is:


  • Kyle

    “You don’t fight fair. I know you think you do, but you don’t.”

    Well, that’s true. Few people are as smart or have as much time to devote to following baseball as I do. It’s not really fair to them when they try to argue with me.

    • OCCubFan

      And you are more humble than most other people.

  • Kyle

    “Unless we’re going to define “major market” as nothing but New York, LA, and Chicago, I think Houston has to be on the list. And I don’t agree that only those three are worth counting.”

    Even looking at metro areas isn’t a true measure of market size, as your Boston example showed. You need to go to the next level up: Combined Statistical Area:

    Notice that while many of the areas gain a ton of population when moving from metro area to CSA, Houston stays almost exactly the same. Boston draws from Providence and a number of other small cities. Houston draws from Houston, and that’s it.

    15 teams make their homes in Combined Statistical Areas larger than Houston.

    I’d almost rather call Boston mid-market than Houston large-market. Houston just in no way fits in the same category as the Cubs.

    • Luke

      Combined Statistical Area chucks parts of West Virginia into the Baltimore area, stuffs an area about 200 miles long all under San Francisco – Oakland, lumps Daytona Beach in with the Orlando Area (but doesn’t include the Cocoa Beach area, which is actually closer to Orlando and has more Orlando commuters), and… I could keep going.

      Suffice to say I have issues with using CSA as a measure of baseball market size. The lines that drawn often have more to do with politics and bragging rights than anything remotely akin to logic. I greatly prefer Core Bases Statistical Areas for this type of thing. I think it paints a much more accurate picture than the CSA.

      If you’re going into insist on tossing Daytona into central Florida (but not Cocoa Beach) and including Harper’s Ferry in a Baltimore measurement, then we’re simply not going to ever agree.

      • Kyle

        That’s fine, but we still need something better than just metro area, because baseball is a sport that gets a ton of its money from regional cable deals.

        • Internet Random

          So look at Nielsen DMAs (Designated Market Areas).

        • Luke

          Regional networks through a huger wrench in the works, but without subscriber numbers I’m not sure how to handle them. Some combination of Core Based Statistical Area and media market rankings might cut it.

          Either way, Houston is a freakin’ huge city and that team should have no trouble ramping up their spending in the coming years.

  • Dan

    A media market is how a “major” market is defined. Based on Arbitron rankings for the fall 2012, Houston is considered the 6th largest media market in the United States. As a result, this makes Houston a “major” market.

    In order:
    New York
    San Fran
    Washington DC

    • DoubleDown

      Can you give me a link. Some sort of proof for your comment?

      • Internet Random
    • Internet Random

      Pretty much any list you look at will have Houston as a major market. I think that Houston’s Nielsen DMA ranking is not as high as that, but that takes into account TV penetration.

    • Luke

      Media markets are probably the best indicator, but including media can make things even murkier.

      Until 2007 Atlanta had some of their games on basic cable nationwide, thanks to TBS. Did that mean we had to count the entire cable-subscribing population of the continental United States as part of the Braves market? I tend to doubt it.

      • Kyle

        Rather than wrangling over which list to use, could you tell me who you consider to be a “big-market” team? And what teams are the biggest “mid-market” teams?

        • DoubleDown
          • Luke

            I’m unlikely to take Bleacher Report seriously as a source.

            It’s not quite the National Enquirer of sports blogs, but sometimes I think it’s close.

        • Chris

          I’ll take a stab
          NY – Both teams
          CHI – Both teams
          L.A. – Both teams
          Texas & Houston

          I don’t know exactly how you define mid-market, but here’s what I think:
          St. Louis
          San Francisco

        • Luke

          The multi-team margets are all major markets (New York, Chicago, LA-Anaheim, San Fran – Oakland). I’d also toss Dallas, Houston, and Philadelphia into that mix. I referenced Miami earlier, but that one probably fits better in the mid market.

          Atlanta, Washington, Miami, and Boston are where I start to run into trouble. Boston is the smallest by population of that set, but acts the most like a major market. Washington is the largest, but it has to share with Baltimore and I’m not sure that area is large enough to float both as true major-market teams. Miami isn’t far behind Washington by population, but clearly something isn’t working out there.

          I suppose I’d draw the major market line after Philadelphia. Washington would be on the list if they weren’t sharing with Baltimore… and maybe should be anyway. Boston and Atlanta are leading the next tier, with Miami doing it’s own thing.

          I’m going to tuck Toronto off to the side for now. It’s big, but it is also different by being under Canadian taxation, currency, media law, and so forth. I’m not sure how much that matters in real world terms, but until I do know, I’m just going to ignore them.

    • DoubleDown

      Whoa. The original question was “is the Houston Astro franchise considered a major baseball market”, and not wether it considered a major media market or a major metro population center.

      • Internet Random

        Please link to that, because what I see as the “original question” is “Is Houston a major market team?“… linkified for your convenience.

        • DoubleDown

          Yes. But we are talking baseball here. One would have intepret that as a major market baseball team, not as a collective sports/media/population market.

          • Internet Random

            Let’s leave the goalposts where they started.

            • DoubleDown

              I will. Somebody show me something that says the Astros are a large market team.

              • Internet Random

                I will.

                Sweet. Let me know when you get around to doing it.

                Somebody show me something that says the Astros are a large market team.

                Large does not equal major. If it did, you wouldn’t be trying to sneak your word into the place of major in the “original question”.

                • DoubleDown

                  Not sneaking anything. Large does mean major for all the posts. Large certainly doesn’t mean medium or small.

                  • Internet Random

                    Not sneaking anything.

                    No you’re not, but not for lack of effort on your part.

                    Here’s an example of what you’re doing: First you say,

                    But we are talking baseball here. One would have intepret that as a major market baseball team, not as a collective sports/media/population market.

                    Then you find your Baseball Almanac article based on data over 12 years old (you do know that we do a census every 10 years in this country, right?) that breaks out markets into groups based on “collective sports/media/population market”, and you cite that with a seemingly straight face.

                    If this discussion is to continue, you’re going to have to exhibit some intellectual honesty.

  • Anonnifan

    I think the Cubs #1 target this off-season should be Kuroda. Think about it, the Cubs won’t have to give up a first rounder because their draft pick is protected, Kuroda wants a one year deal so he is free to head back to Japan, and that makes him the ultimate sign-and-trade player. They have the cash, and no other way to spend it on prospects. Plus wouldn’t it feel good to outbid the Yankees?

    • King Jeff

      Kuroda might be a nice pick-up, but if last winter is any indication, he only has one or two teams he would even consider. Last year, I think it was LA, NY, or back to Japan, and I assume this year is the same.