The Arizona Fall League wrapped up this week, which means the season is over for the Cubs’ prospects playing there. The final stats:

Matt Szczur – .264/.368/.363 with 9 SB

Javier Baez – .211/.250/.456 with 4 homers and the second most RBI on the team (despite playing only half a season)

Rubi Silva – .206/.260/.265 with a couple triples

Logan Watkins – .219/.375/.344 with 8 BB in just 9 games

Dae-Eun Rhee – 6.27 ERA in 18.2 innings with 12 K and 8 BB

Nick Struck – 5.51 ERA in 16.1 innings with 11 K and 12 BB

Tony Zych – 3.86 ERA in 14 innings with 4 K and 2 BB

Kevin Rhoderick – 4.82 ERA in 9.1 innings with 14 K and 2 BB

  • Among the reactions, acknowledging that it’s a super small sample size and the numbers are less important than the instruction: You’d like to see more K’s from Zych. That IsoD from Watkins is insane. Rubi Silva might be on the way to bust town after signing for $1 million a couple years ago. Matt Szczur is going to need just a hair more power to be more than a 4th outfielder in the bigs. Kevin Rhoderick’s slider really must be that good.
  • Keeping the lights on: I’m not going to recommend picking the Cubs in 2013, for example, if you’re into online betting.
  • Though the AFL season is over the Winter Leagues are going strong, and Carrie Muskat has an update on some of the notable recent performances. Junior Lake is still killing it in the Dominican Republic, Luis Valbuena is playing well in Venezuela, and Christian Villanueva is doing just so-so in Mexico.
  • TCR’s Arizona Phil has a more detailed/anecdotal look at the Cubs in the AFL, as well as a couple updates on Winter Leaguers.
  • A profile on Dan Vogelbach, who is apparently a chatty Cathy around the diamond, and who plans to keep working on his conditioning in the offseason. He sounds like a hard-working kid. (A fun anecdote from the article? Apparently after the instruction league this Fall, the players had a little home run derby, and when Vogelbach faced Jorge Soler, the latter won.)
  • One of the Dodgers’ new owners, Peter Gruber, explains why the Cubs need to renovate Wrigley Fieldas soon as possible: “You can continue to win on the field, but everything is a part of the process now. [The venue is] an important factor. Clubs that don’t have good training facilities, good medical facilities, good clubhouses, as well as good bathrooms for women – a very important issue – different kinds of food, they compete less favorably …. There’s different models that have worked different ways. You have to look at your marketplace and decide what you can do.┬áThe Cubs are a tradition. Going to that park has become part of the culture, it’s been venerated. And that’s what the Red Sox also did. Is Dodger Stadium that way? Maybe. Maybe not. It’s a different kind of fanbase. I think the truth is, at the end of the day, we compete against home entertainment. And as a location-based entertainment venue, you better be up to snuff, cause over time, it’ll eat your lunch if you’re not.”
  • gutshot5820

    As I was saying yesterday, why the heck are people so infatuated with the current Wrigley Field? The only thing positive you can say about it is, we are the only team left in baseball with an antiquated ballpark. Can someone please explain to me why being a relic and so decrepit that it is now declared a historic a good thing? It’s great for a tour but to enjoy the game as a fan or a player, the place is junk.

    • Brett

      To me, that reads like an explanation of why the renovations are so badly needed, not an explanation of why the Cubs shouldn’t be at Wrigley Field.

      • gutshot5820

        Understood, and it would be great if they can remodel Wrigley into a modern ballpark, while maintaining some of the charm that makes it special i.e. ivy and bleachers. I’m also not against moving the Cubs if the city keeps putting up roadblocks to the Cubs accessing more streams of income through their park and hopefully using the profits to put a better product on the field.

      • Eric

        Exactly, as I just responded in the other thread. I really can’t see the advantage of building a new stadium in the suburbs vs. renovating Wrigley. I’d love to be enlightened.

    • Byron Browne

      Why do some people still like to stay at the Palmer House instead of a cookie-cutter room at the Marriott? Why do people like to live in an old victorian house or octagon instead of a brand new KB home? Tradition and a sense of history maybe?

      • Internet Random

        I heart the Palmer House.

      • DarthHater

        Granted, to replace Wrigley with a “cookie-cutter” ballpark would be an abomination. But to replace it with a modern, state-of-the-art, Camden-Yards-like ballpark at the same location would be an infinite improvement. There’s no particular history worth preserving in a bunch of steel girders, falling chunks of concrete, and view-obstructing pillars.

      • Byron Browne

        Al of the cities that have state of the art stadia (San Diego, San Francisco, Miami, Milwaukee, and yes Camden Yards in Baltimore) are cities with a large enough tax base to afford a private/municipal parnership. Which suburban Chicago town can afford a “palace” stadium for the Cubs to play in? Waukegan? Elmhurst? Morton Grove?

        • Scotti


          • TSB

            The cost to build a Camden Yards style ballpark would be about $280 million dollars. That is over three times the total budget for the village of Schaumburg That ‘s a lot of debt for the taxpayers to agree to.

          • Internet Random

            Maybe they could play in Medieval Times.

  • Jim

    I think that an important factor is the clubhouses. If you want to be able to lure quality free agents, the player facilities could be a big deciding factor. If you have been a visiting ballplayer to Wrigley, you may have a very negative vibe in that area.

  • Crazyhorse

    Renovations are needed on the roster. it seems like the President of Baseball Operations and the Mayor of Chicago intend to use the Cheapest means possible in a rebuild.. The fans deserve better, but if the Cubs cant or wont put a better team on the field how can the Cubs ask the Ciity for money.

  • CM

    I wholeheartedly disagree with his assessment, as it’s missing some pretty serious gaps between the two teams and venues. I live in LA and have attended many Dodger games, including every game they play the Cubs. Comparing the two cities: you can’t really do it. They are so vastly different it’s amazing. First off, LA sports fans are without question, the most fickle group you will ever meet. I can’t begin to tell you the number of people I know who grew up in some area of LA as die hard Dodger fans, only to move 30 miles to Orange County, live there for five years, and become Angels fans. I always enjoy when they try to logically justify this to me. My response: I moved 2000 miles, have been here for 7 years and not once, in my wildest dreams would I contemplate rooting for anyone other than the Cubs. Are the home entertainment options a challenge? Sure there are, especially for a fan base that at any given hour of the day can live 2 1/2 hours from the ballpark depending on traffic. And one that would just as soon go to the beach, have a BBQ, sit on their ass on the couch etc, etc. Wrigley Field is a destination. Dodger Stadium, not so much. Wrigley is easily accessible via public transportation, bicycling, walking, you name it. Dodgers Stadium is surrounded by well, nothing. You have a pretty hefty drive to access a nice bar, restaurant or any entertainment, and that’s after you wait 45 minutes to an hour to get out of the parking lot. Wrigley has a myriad of dining options, bars, and shopping. Essentially anything you want at Wrigley is steps out of the gates before or after the game. Does Wrigley need some renovations? Certainly it does. I’d contend player related improvements are much more important, but I’m sure the women’s bathrooms could use some upgrades. To imply however that people will eventually stop going to Wrigely because they don’t have Panda Express and CPK however? Ridiculous.

    • cub4life

      well put. I couldn’t agree with you more. Where is the trangle building they have been looking at for years? Are they still trying to aquire other properties around Wrigley to make it a better experiance (I know this is difficult since no one wants to sell)?

      Go Cubs Go

  • Andy

    I think they need to adjust Wrigley to address the temp/wind aspects that the stadium presents. The early part of the season is a manufactured runs stadium and the end part of the season, the same thing. The middle of the year tends to be a homer stadium (less so in recent years). I find Cub fans tend to focus too much on home runs, but they do become important in the middle of the year.

    I think the stadium is such a factor and how it changes during the season, it contributes to the 100+ years. Adjusting the stadium to not be such a factor should be part of the redesign. Closable roof should be considered more, but I fear it will not.

    I think in modern day baseball where players do focus on their numbers, so that they can get more money, wrigley might be a tough sell. I do agree with an earlier poster that the stadium may be contributing to some player making a decision to go with another team.

  • Barry

    With the current reduction in payroll, the Cubs should be able to thoroughly renovate the women’s bathrooms and sign some players that will help us become a b

  • Barry

    With the current reduction in payroll, the Cubs should be able to thoroughly renovate the women’s bathrooms and sign some players that will help us become a better ball club. Keeping the fan base enthused and creating a culture of winning should be Jedstein’s number one priority.

  • Abram_the3rd

    As much as I love Wrigley, I love the Cubs more. If they moved, it wouldn’t break my heart.

  • Jeff1969

    I understand that Cubs fans all think everyone loves the Cubs, but with an economic climate & outlook like he one we currently have, asking taxpayers to foot the bill is political suicide for whomever does it this time. It is also wrong. Baseball teams are investments not public entities, they’re bought & flipped for profit, their stadiums should be their responsibility or they should start revenue sharing with the city. All this stuff about Wrigley bringing so much commerce to the neighborhood, well if the fans didn’t participate, they wouldn’t be making the millions. It’s a two way steet. It doesn’t become a one way when the business side doesn’t want to spend the money on their own business. The idea that the public should be thankful for the Cubs locating their business is crap. They’re lucky the city didn’t boot them years ago for being such as godawful crappy organization & team. If they leave, let them go, the neighboood could use a lowering of the number of cookie cutter bars anyway.

    • Internet Random


      • DarthHater

        My attorneys will be contacting you about unauthorized use of my photographic likeness.

      • Jeff1969

        I’m assming you’re refering to me being a troll internet random? Or is that you just being random? I can disagree with anyone I want to. As for the taxpayers, we also pay for the streets, the police, everything a city has to supply for a business like the Cubs do make their money. I’d gladly bulldoze that rotten pile of of bricks. Chicago will survive the loss of the Cubs.

      • ColoCubFan

        What is that thing??

        • DocPeterWimsey

          IR brought a Cave Troll.

          Hey, who here is totally geeked for The Hobbit?

          • King Jeff

            I couldn’t stand the LOTR book when I was a kid, but I loved The Hobbit. I appreciate both now, but I’m looking forward to The Hobbit more than I did any of the others.

    • ssckelley

      You are right, the Cubs is an investment and it would be an investment for the City to keep the Cubs in Wrigley. The City would lose millions if the Cubs built a stadium out in the burbs and pulled out of Wrigley.

    • Luke

      The Cubs do have revenue sharing with the city of Chicago. It’s called taxes. And the Cubs pay some of the highest tax amounts in all of baseball.

  • Andrew

    Are we just going to ignore that Peter Gruber has been in the women’s bathrooms at Wrigley? What a creeper!

    • Tommy

      LOL! And this is why I read the messages.

  • ColoCubFan

    I wonder what the cost would be of fixing Wrigley Field up to where everything that is needed is done, vs. donating the “historic landmark” to the city of Chicago and starting over somewhere else. Just curious. I wonder how much the tax write-off would be for donating Wrigley Field?

  • Elephant hole

    The best thing about Wrigley Field as far as a historic ballpark goes is the ivy covered walls and scoreboard. Keep the ivy, bleachers, and scoreboard and rebuild the rest.

    • Byron Browne

      Makes too much sense…

  • Believe in 2015

    Jorge Soler is going to be a beast. I hope he can work his way up to the Cubs in the next two or three years

  • DarthHater


    One of your lovely advertisers is generating very annoying pop-up windows.

    • Brett

      Any details? I’m not seeing them, so if you can help me with any info you’ve got, I can try to get rid of them. (Details like: does it load at the beginning or end, load upon a click, or does it pop up underneath this window? What’s the ad for? Is it a true pop up (i.e., a separate window) or is it an “on-screen” pop-up?)

      • DarthHater

        I have only seen it once. It was an onscreen pop-up and it jumped around the screen. It did not fully load before I closed it, so I did not see what it was for. That’s all I can remember, but I mentioned it partly because I saw another comment about a pop-up from another person here this morning.

        • Brett

          Thanks, DH. I’ll keep my eye on it (and if you see it again, if you have a chance to see what it’s for, let me know). I didn’t approve any pop-ups, but sometimes they make their way into the ad rotation anyway. Sorry about that.

          • calicubsfan007

            @Brett: I got one last week that was AT&T and it literally took up the entire page when I went on here. Just fyi.

            • calicubsfan007

              And I just got that pop up that DH was talking about.

              • Brett

                If you could offer some of those details I mentioned, that would be helpful.

                • calicubsfan007

                  @Brett: The pop up that was similar to DH’s slid across my screen (on same page as BN, not new window), stopped in the center, then disappeared before it could load so I have no idea what company was advertising. But it did kind of look like one of those surveys that randomly pop up on the internet. The AT&T screen just randomly showed up while I was on the page. I mean I was already on the page for 5 min and looking stuff up on here, then bam! The AT&T screen took over. It wasn’t a new window, it just took over the one that had BN on it. I was able to exit out of it though, but it was inconvenient. Hope that helps.

                  • Brett

                    Very helpful. Thanks – and sorry. I’ll look into it.

  • daveyrosello

    None of the Jim Hendry-era Cuban signees has really been a worth a damn, have they? Or was Gioskar Amaya one of those? If so, he’d seem to be the only one that has shown signs of panning out. Silva stinks.