If you missed it, don’t forget to check out the latest episode of the BN Podcast. I was never a podcast person until I started recording one, and now I think I want to listen to many more. If anyone has any quality suggestions – of any kind, doesn’t have to be just sports – drop ’em in the comments.

  • Buster Olney shares some thoughts on what he’s hearing from teams around baseball about the Cubs: “Over the last week, have heard compliments from other teams about the way that the Cubs are methodically rebuilding, from the ground up.” He goes on to tease us all with, “One more thing about the Cubs: I don’t think Price will be traded until next winter, but by then, they could be well-positioned to land him.” Olney is just speculating, of course, but it underscores the fact that, with patience, the Cubs’ organization could be in a very, very good place one year from today.
  • Matt Garza threw again yesterday, and like his first day of throwing earlier this week, he says it went well. It also sounds like he’s itching to let it all out and face some batters.
  • It’s the All-Star break in the Winter Leagues, and Junior Lake was the Cubs’ sole All-Star representative between the Dominican All-Stars and the Venezuelan All-Stars. He went 1-3 with an RBI (scoring Hanley Ramirez) in the game.
  • Patrick Mooney tells the story of how the Cubs drafted San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick (then also a pitcher) in the 2009 MLB Draft, and tried to get him to sign on for a little trial baseball run, a la Matt Szczur. Folks at the time – including NFL scouts – didn’t think he could make it in the NFL, so the Cubs’ overtures must have been pretty tempting. Looks like Kaepernick made the right decision. (Then again, who knows what kind of pitcher he’d be right now?)
  • Paul Sullivan talks to new Kane County manager Mark Johnson, who believes the Low-A move from Peoria to Kane County will be good for the prospects playing there – knowing that the Cubs’ brass could always show up.
  • Let’s work a little exercise in clarifying anger – I couldn’t help but notice that a number of you were angry about the Cubs’ reported signing of Korean reliever Chang-Yong Lim to a split minor league/major league contract, and were similarly angry that the Cubs had claimed reliever Sandy Rosario off of waivers yesterday. I won’t try to convince any of you who are angry about these low-risk moves that every (good) team makes that the moves are low-risk, smart moves (I guess I just did). I will, however, try to help you clarify your anger so that you can express your disapproval in a more meaningful way: you aren’t angry that the Cubs are trying to pick up players on the cheap in order to find value and competitive advantage, as every team tries to do. You are angry that, each time the Cubs make one of these minor moves, they aren’t making a major move. Be honest with yourself about the source of your anger, and then we can all have a more meaningful conversation about the real issue – the Cubs’ plans for rebuilding and for 2013 – instead of mouth-pooping back and forth about low-risk, decent-upside, super small moves that every team in baseball makes and would be stupid not to make.
  • On Lim, specifically, let me add: if you expect the Cubs to be uncompetitive in 2013, before really trying to take a step forward in 2014, how could you not see Lim as a perfect signing on a two-year, major/minor split contract with almost no guaranteed money? He won’t contribute anything of value in 2013, but should be ready to go in 2014. If he’s not ready to go, the Cubs won’t owe him much of anything. To those who say the signing makes no sense, I say … that makes no sense.
  • JR

    The whole anger thing comes from the obvious fact the Cubs are going to be awful again this year. I like that they have a plan, but it doesn’t make stomaching the garbage on field play any easier for me. 2012 was harder than I thought it would ever be, and to be perfectly honest other than Vizcaino and out bidding everyone for Soler the pieces they added don’t excite me in the slightest. So that’s what i am angry about. But your right Brett, the broken old Korean RP and crap waiver pickups don’t really make me mad.

    • JoeyCollins

      Rizzo? Almora?

      • JR

        I was referring to their move of signing players to only trade them for prospects. But yeah obviously Rizzo was a good deal for the Cubs, but I am not high on Almora at all.

        • kranzman54

          I would also consider adding Christian Villanueva, plus they will probably get DeJesus dealt. Remember even if Villanueva doesn’t excite you, he has value as a prospect in trades (see Gregorious). This front office will clearly be patient, if these are the major headline moves next year for the Cubs, I admit I will be upset. For now, I’m still in.

    • Jack Weiland

      I can understand being mad that the Cubs are not currently a championship caliber team. But … the pieces they added didn’t excite you? You mentioned Vizcaino and Soler (which were both pretty big additions) … what about Almora? Rizzo? The emergence of Baez? All the arms they added in the draft (Pierce Johnson, Duane Underwood, etc)? They went from a bottom 10 farm to a top 10 farm in one season.

      Yes, the ML club sucked. And still sucks. But come on. They added more than any team other than maybe the Astros in the past year. It’s not translating onto the TV yet, but plenty of exciting things happened last year down the food chain.

      • JR

        I am not upset at all that the Cubs aren’t a championship level team. My only point is that the Cubs whole goal last year was to add minor league talent. They can say what they want, but that was the ONLY goal last year. I would think that they could have done better that what they did when they only had that as a goal. Yes, Rizzo is awesome. But Almora has played more baseball/trained than any baseball player his age EVER. I am concerned he may be closer to his ceiling than other high picks. And the pitchers taken in the draft are lottery tickets, hopefully one or 2 work out.

        • CityCub

          You must be high bro…..what’s there not to be excited about. With the list of young names already said? I it speaks for itself when one you go from a bottom tier farm system to a top rate system in a year. And then when other MLB clubs are speaking out; saying that they like what Theo and Jed are doing. The future looks bright for the NorthSide. Be patient and see what’s coming.

          • CityCub

            Think*. Damn lol no edits

          • JR

            Nah, not been high since college dude. Good times… I never said I didn’t like what Thed is doing. I guess I was hoping for better pitching depth in the minors from their flippable pieces. Young talented starting pitching is always going to be the problem holding this franchise back from competing. I am just bored with what the Cubs are doing right now.

            • Jack Weiland

              Let me ask you: what could the Cubs have done that would have pleased you? They ran into pretty bad luck on Dempster and Garza, otherwise I think they have a pretty superb season adding long-term assets. You sound an awful lot like a guy who has decided he won’t be satisified no matter what the input is.

  • JulioZuleta

    I love how on a regular basis you use words that I have to look up in a dictionary. I love even more how on a regular basis you drop something of the “mouth-pooping” variety.

    • Danny Ballgame

      Big fan of the mouth pooping comment myself

  • Tim

    Red Sox nearing deal with Ryan dempster

  • Jeff

    It’s tough can of worms trying to temper the anger of passionate cub fans. I know I want to be a rational fan and say its a long process, they are building thru the draft and farm system, and blah blah blah. But man, it’s tough reading this site with the current state of the major league team bc it’s a micro level view of the ball club. From 10,000 feet I admit, I like the view but tell me how to turn off my feelings for our 2013 cubs. Honestly, I’d like to know bc I don’t want to not read BN or unfollow my twitter related cub peeps.

    • cub2014

      its been 9 years since the cubs fielded a potential world series team and 19years before that
      so if you arent going to contend this year why not be the worst and get the 1st pick next year
      too their might be an ace to get for the next 10 yers. By 2014 they can do some major
      signings and some of their prospects and they would be instantly in contention. if in 2014 they dont do major signings then we should be upset.

  • emrac

    I agree with Brett keep up the good work we appreciate everything you do on this website you are the best Cubs reporter

  • Scott in NC

    I think it is too early to tell what is really going on. Arguments can be made about the free agents the last two years as why signing them was not a good idea. We will see once there is a great fit free agent if the Cubs open up the wallet or make excuses as for why they are not a great fit for the organization.

    My hope is that what the Cubs are doing right now is preparing for the future by not getting saddled with bad contracts or guys that do not fit. I just hope that the brain trust is not stuck in their foreign player and cheap upside guy philosophy to see the potential in other moves that could help. I hope they are not trying to prove they are smarter than everyone else and are willing to take any avenue to improve the team.

  • Adarecub

    2 points-1) theo and jed are not gonna come out and advertise their desire for a big name. They will wait until the new year for a panicked big name on a short term deal. So there’s no need for fans to panic. They surely see how we need upgrades on offense for the new season.

    2) the lim signing while good in theory is terrible in practice. In 2014 we get a reliever who is 37, coming off his 2nd tjs who has never pitched big leagues before. Makes no sense to me

    • Chase S.

      On your second point, keep in mind it’s a major league/minor league split at low cost. If he does nothing, there’s really not much invested in him anyway. All it does is add a little depth to the ‘pen on both levels. It’s not sexy by any means but at least it’s a body that could potentially eat some relief innings and take a little stress off of the better relievers.

  • http://www.hookersorcake.com hookersorcake

    I’m angry because I could do a better job. Everytime I play a baseball video game I have the Cubs winning a World Series by year two. Sure I have to cheat like hell but I get it done every damn time. Whoever this Thed Jeo is, he needs to sign some top dollar talent and stop wasting his money on farming. Why is he farming anyway? This is baseball, the Major Leagues, we are not going to win by growing carrots.

    • Adventurecizin’ Justin

      What top dollar talent would you waste YOUR money on? From my point of view, giving Grienke that kind of money is insane. When has he ever won a big game? He has missed an entire season due to anxiety issues. So, would you really invest $147MM of YOUR money on something like that?

      Seriously, if you’re really comparing a video game to real-life, that is hilarious!

      • King Jeff

        It’s even more hilarious that you think he’s being serious.

    • SalukiHawk

      This comment is so insanely awesome

  • JR

    Now that I think about it I am really pissed about our minor league pitching. It still sucks balls.. And how the hell did we have that bad of a AAA team last year. Usually when a mlb team is bad like the Cubs, they will have some decent talent at AAA. I am real pissed about that. Ok, I am done now..

    • King Jeff

      So, you’ve probably been pissed for a long time. There hasn’t been top level talent at AAA or a solid group of minor league pitchers since early in the Hendry regime.

      • JR

        You are correct King. After the Cubs last playoff run it was obvious that there was going to be a lot of bad contracts and no talent coming up in the minors. It has been a disappointing 5 yrs.

  • Morken

    If you aren’t upset with the state of the Cubs, then you need to get your pulse checked. Losing 100 games two seasons in a row is unacceptable; especially for a team with the resources the Cubs are endowed with.

    This whole idea that in 2014, year three of this project, that the Cubs will merely “take a step forward” is unacceptable as well. That’s code for “lucky to be near .500”.

    Truth be told, the Cuvs won’t be a legitimate contender until 2015, at the earliest. Why does that upset some Cubs fans? Oh, I don’t know-maybe because that’s ridiculous!

    Why are Cubs fans tired of certain signings; especially internationally ones made by this FO? We already have a baramoter gor this front office’s productivity in that area: Geraldo Conception!

    • Cubbie Blues

      Last time I checked we didn’t lose 100 games in 2011.

      We already have a baramoter gor this front office’s productivity in that area: Geraldo Conception!

      I didn’t know his conception was that well known.

      • Eric

        When was the last time you checked?

        • Cubbie Blues

          You may want to recheck your checking of my check. We lost 101 in 2012, but not in 2011.

      • Morken

        The obvious implication, for which you we unable to grasp, is that the Cubs will lose 100 games, or vey close to it, in 2013; just as they did in 2012.

        Hilarious! In trying to juggle a few things, I typed my post rather quickly and spelled ” Concepcion”‘, “Conception”.

        Anyway, the point remains: The Concepcion signing has resulted in a wasted roster spot, and a poor international scouting job.

        • Cubbie Blues

          I grasped it quite well. I just tend to believe we will be winning more games than that next year. We also wouldn’t have lost as many as we did last year if we didn’t sell off a lot of our short term assets. Besides when rebuilding the W-L record doesn’t count for much.

          • Morken

            But that’s just it. The Cubs will be selling off such assets, again. That’s the plan.

            • Cubbie Blues

              I think we are arguing now over exactly how bad they are going to be next year. Let’s leave it at: I like “the plan” and you don’t.

              • Morken

                That’s not true, either. If fans aren’t all-in on every aspect of the plan, the indignant aspect of the base gets upset.

                Look, I like the aspect of the plan where we avoid overpaying for free-agents as a means to win.

                I like that the Cubs are focusing on building up their farmsystem( although Theo and company are given too much credit for it’s turnaround. They threw money st Soler, Handed a high draft pick for them to get Almora and Baez was already in the system.)

                But they are lying to the fans by acting as if we will be a contender, in the near future. They are neglecting the presence of true, young difference makers.

  • Tim

    All our high upside arms are in the low minors. Hopefully we will see a little bit of an upgrade this year with vizcaino and if we trade him, whatever we get back for garza. No doubt they will be going after some pitching with him.

  • Matt

    I agree that the bickering is dumb. What Theo and Co. is doing is the right thing and the right move. The people who want to sign all the players for these long expensive contracts are the same people complaining the past couple years about not being able to trade Soriano because of his large contract or not having the flexibility to sign players because of contracts like Soriano’s. We should be able to trade him this year but we will have to eat $26mm (thats alot better than $50mm). Take a look at the Dodgers for instance….They are going to be in a very rough position in 2-3 years when they haven’t won anything and they have a bunch of 34-37 year old players still owed $100mm each. It makes them almost if not impossible to trade and no one wants them at that price with there dwindling talent. That will hamper them from making trades as well as signing players in the future.

    What Theo and Co. is doing is the right thing. Get some young talent brewing in the farm system and save some money now by signing some upside players for short term manageable contracts and then when the time comes use some of that talent in the farm system to obtain some talent like the Justin Uptons and the Mike Stantons or David Prices as well as have the payroll flexability to add $50mm – $80mm a year in contracts and go out and sign some big time free agents. Its about getting the right balance on the team and that is exactly what they are working towards. People will be happy eventually because they are putting us in a good position for the future.

    Also, when you sign people to short term contracts you can easily manage the team and make changes rather quickly because you are not worrying about where to put your aging veteran OF with bad knees who hits .211 but still has 4 years left on his contract and $90mm still owed to him or your 37 year old veteran pitcher who has arm issues and sports a 6.37 ERA but can’t be traded because he still has 3 years and $54mm owed to him. The short term contracts make it easy to go from having a player for 1-2 years to totally revamping the team in the matter of one year. Its VERY smart for what they are doing!!!

    • Morken

      It’s not about singing overpriced free-agents to gaudy, ridiculous contracts that has some Cubs fans worried. It’s that the Cubs haven’t traded for any young, building bock player; or at least be in the mix for them.

      For the Cubs to be good beyond 2013, they will have to acquire such players. These moves should already be taking place. Why haven’t they? Because the plan, as shrouded in diversion as it is, is for the Cubs to contend for the playoffs in 2015. The Cubs will use next off-season to acquire young difference makers, while they used the offseason after that to finish the job.

      We will lose close to 100 games, this coming season.
      We will be under .500, in 2014.
      Hopefully, a contender in 2015.

      That’s the plan.

      • Melrosepad

        But Morken, how are you going to get these young, building block players? Cashner was seen as a potential building block and we had to trade him to get Rizzo. You have to have something someone else wants or covets to get value back. Right now our major trade pieces are Soriano, who despite improvement in the field is still a 37 year old OF with 2 years left and Marmol who is still wild, even when he pitches well.

        Yes, we should be trying to get all the young, building block players we can, but it goes both ways.

        • Morken

          It’s not as if the Cubs are currently without assets. They has some minor league talent, along with a few major league players, with high value. Players who’s value will never be beyond it’s current point. We act as if everyone of these players is going to pan out. Fans thought the same about Pie, Vitters and Jackson, as they currently do about Almora, Baez and Soler.

          Furthermore, a player like Trevor Bauer was had for value that the a cubs could have provided.

          My point is, instead of using the last two offseasons to sign injured, tradable players; why not try and sprinkle in some more young, upside players?

          • Melrosepad

            Yes, but our minor league talent is all in our lower levels. Teams that would be interested in trading for that level of talent are normally at the same point as we are in rebuilding. So all we would be potentially doing is trading our talent for the same.

            Would Bauer look good in a Cubs uni, yes. Arizona wanted a ML ready shortstop with long-term control for him and got it in Gregorius. We didn’t have anything like that in our system. We have shortstops, but none that are close. If we had someone like a Choo to trade then yes, we need to be making those trades to get young, upside players. We just don’t have many trade pieces that contenders who are more apt to trade those want.

            • Morken

              A package including Junior Lake wouldn’t entice them?

              • AB

                Lake is no way a long-term SS. I’d rather hold onto Lake now that they’ve finally moved him to the OF.

              • fivetoolmike


                A package including Junior Lake wouldn’t entice them?


                Junior Lake is probably not a shortstop long-term, and not major league ready.

              • DocPeterWimsey

                ALso, Lake is not a guy who can play in MLB next year, and that’s what the DBacks wanted.

                Cubs fans are not alone in making “false analogies,” and it’s one of the most common sources of fan frustration. That is, fans false assume Barney = Gregorius (wrong: Gregorius is 5 years younger and offers 6 full years of team control) or Lake = Gregorius (wrong: Gregorius is MLB ready and an outstanding SS), and then become indignant when their FO failed to realize this. The problem, of course, is that none of the 30 FOs realize these things!

                Now, this does not change the fact that Towers is a buffoon for making this trade, and it really is a shame that the Cubs didn’t have someone like Gregorius in their system (i.e., slick-fielding toothpick-hitting disposable SS that you can dupe an old-schooler into comparing to Derek Jeter). However, the Cubs did not.

                (Even if they had, then this might never have arisen: the 3-way trade seems to have risen from the ashes of a 4-way trade in which Upton was the centerpiece! Towers might have committed to the rest of the trade on the Concorde Fallacy.)

                • Morken

                  Nobody is stating that Lake = Gregorius

                  The point is, Bauer was an available young pitcher, who was traded for a light hitting SS, who doesn’t have a major league ready bat.

                  Lake isn’t ready today; but he is close. He has a better bat than Gregorius. And Lake’s fielding continues to improve at SS.

                  • AB

                    Towers loved and coveted Gregorius. It doesn’t matter what Lake’s potential is. That is who Towers wanted.

                  • DocPeterWimsey

                    If you accept that Lake << Gregorius, then the idea that we could have gotten Bauer for Lake loses any basis. Towers wanted a great fielding SS: and "continues to improve" does not cut it.

                    Again, this was a really dumb trade by Towers, and he's rightfully catching a lot of flack for it. (His comparison of Gregorius to Jeter was either idiotic or ignorant, or both, and made things only worse.) However, at least he has a SS that he can run out there in April 2013. Lake would have been a guy that wouldn't be ready to run out until 2014 at the earliest, and probably not to SS.

                    • JR

                      Too bad we didn’t have Hak Ju Lee. We could have sent him over to AZ if they could care less about hitting. Towers is a moron.

          • http://www.viewfromthebleachers.com Norm

            How do you know what Josh Towers values in a return for Trevor Bauer?
            He wanted a big league ready shortstop. The Cubs do not have one of those available.

            • Morken

              None of us know. And Lake wouldn’t be the only piece involved.

              And, the Cubs could have worked some sort of 3 way trade to acquire the SS Towers would be happy with.

              The point is, Bauer was available, and traded away for a light hitting SS. By most accounts, Gregorious doesn’t have a MLB ready bat.

        • Lou

          You have to take risks and think with foresight. Baseball has become more of chess game than ever before. It’s not about saying anymore than Theo and Co have the advantage with Moneyball, as SO MANY fans are mistaken. Olney put out there the blurb on David Price. Yet, I don’t know if the Cubs have the farm to give up to get Price. How do they get those additional pieces? Probably sacrificing some of the team now and hoping a guy like Garza helps you to get some of those pieces. So, some of its luck with Garza’s health, but it’s also comes down to doing something that may not be so popular. Like, well, my suggestion the Cubs trade Shark to get additional young players. That’s met with a mix of derision and “We can’t trade him. At 28, look at what he could become.”

          So, I guess Cubs fans are left to mortagage a few years for what may come later on?

  • Mike

    As a Cubs/Niners(/Nets/Lightning) fan, I’m actually very happy that Kaepernick chose the football. His success there Is fun to see.

    That said, isn’t he closer to Jeff Samaradzija than Szczur? Kaepernick was a pitcher in high school, and if I’m not mistaken, he played RB or WR in HS in addition to QB.

  • Mick

    Hey Brett, the only other podcast I listen to is from TwinsDaily.com called Gleeman and the Geek. Gleeman is a 30-year old blogger who writes for NBC Sports and the Geek is John Bonnes who’s I think the administrator but definitely a writer for TwinsDaily.com. They’re on about their 70th episode and they have the same basic format as you and Sahadev but they usually broadcast from a bar which makes for funny breaks of them ordering drinks and apps from their waiters.

    In this week’s episode, the Geek was on vacation so, Gleeman had to manage the podcast all by himself. The trouble with that was Gleeman had never learned how to actually do anything on the tech side. So, this week’s episode is part tutorial on how to record and broadcast a podcast. http://twinsdaily.com/1253-gleeman-geek-how-podcast.html

    Let me know what you think!

  • Troy

    Brett I think it comes down to maturity. Same conversation I have with my son. ” be patient you can wait til after dinner for a treat” or he’s super excited about the new Black ops game ” be patient maybe you will get it for Christmas ” or us as adults want the new toy when we don’t have money so we go in debt. Society wants to microwave everything. We want it now! Problem is microwaving doesn’t ensure quality. Question would you rather have a microwave meal on thanksgiving or is it worth the wait for the real thing with all the fixings?

    • http://thecubcontrarian.blogspot.com/ Kyle

      That is insultingly patronizing.

      Sometimes, rejecting a “you get nothing now and more later” approach isn’t simple juvenile impatience. It’s sound judgment. The further into the future somebody promises you something, the less accountable they are for keeping it.

      • DarthHater

        Sounds like somebody needs a time out. 😉

      • Internet Random

        The further into the future somebody promises you something, the less accountable they are for keeping it.

        Right. This is why no one ever has to pay back a 30-year mortgage note.

        • http://thecubcontrarian.blogspot.com/ Kyle

          That’s why 15-year mortgage rates are lower than 30-year mortgage rates.

          • Internet Random

            The debt is secured by a mortgage on the property. The rate differential is to compensate the mortgagee for the opportunity cost of having its money committed for twice as long.

            • Kev

              What’s “Mortgages,” Precious?

              • Kev

                I really should’ve posted as “Gollum” right then. Dang.

      • Troy

        I guess when Brett says it’s like turning a ship on a dime that is insulting as well?

      • Troy

        Clarify getting nothing now?

    • Dave

      A lot of Cub fans patience has been used up by previous ownerships.
      If Cub fans are expected to deal with the losing while paying top price to watch a bad product than Ricketts and Theo are going to have to accept that Cub fans have already been patient for a very long time and fair or not the clock is already ticking to field a competitive team.

  • FFP

    I am still pretty high on 2013, though. Add a solid 3rd baseman and we have a great infield. Add a legit middle order bat to the outfield at the order looks very strong. Add a number one to the rotation and ours becomes formidable. Some of those pieces are scarce right now (for everyone else, too–Youk’s worth Millions for 80 games?)
    But, when the iron is hot this team will ready. Might not be ’til 2014, but stuff happens. It is a long season. I like the fact this team takes the long view.

    • Cubbie Blues

      Try 12 of those millions for the “trader”.

  • Timmy

    Brett, the Cubs should hire you as their PR guy — you’d do their horrible image wonders.

  • Internet Random

    Freakonomics, Straight Dope

  • Rizzonkulous

    I’m not one to blame everything on the Hendry era, but the reason that the AAA team and minor league pitching sucks is due to years of terrible drafting and development of players, something the new FO couldn’t possibly have fix in one year and the main reason why the FO is calling this a “build” instead of a “rebuild”. It sucks but that’s the hand that has been dealt to us as Cubs fans and the FO. If you look where the Cubs are after one year of Jed/Theo compared to last year it would be hard to argue they’re not better positioned now(in the minors anyway) than they have been in a long time

    • JR

      I’ll blame Hendry. He made a couple good trades, but his terrible drafting bent the Cubs over in so many ways that we’ll be paying for yrs because of it.

  • Melrosepad

    One thing to consider as well is when the Cubs hired our new FO, the current CBA wasn’t in effect. At that time it was thought we could do what they did in Boston and work the draft with more money than everyone else. Once the CBA came into play it imposed limits on what we could do, so they had to look at it a different way.

    I look at this current free agent class and Anibal Sanchez is brought up a bunch as a person we could buy now who would still be good when we are ready to compete. I know if you go buy WAR that he is a good pitcher, but I can’t help but see the 6 starts in ’07, 15 between rehab and majors in ’08, and 22 (rehab and majors) in ’09. He was hurt a bunch early and it has only really been the past three where he pitched decent. Yes, pitching for the Marlins will have hurt his W/L percentage, but I can’t help but have my eyes drawn to the under .500 win percentage (48/51). If we picked up Sanchez I would love it to be at a lower price than what he is asking for, but I know that isn’t plausible. Either way, I’ll still love the Cubs and watch as many games as I can.

  • Rizzonkulous

    The only reason I say I won’t entirely blame Hendry is because(minus his last year) I’m not sure how limited his budget was for the draft, that being said his hit rate was unfathomly bad.

  • http://thecubcontrarian.blogspot.com/ Kyle

    On Brett’s point about clarifying anger, he’s absolutely right.

    There is an opportunity cost to every player move. In ascending order of importance, they are:

    1) 40-man roster spot. This is getting to be an interesting crunch both this offseason and in upcoming years, and our front office had a reputation for pushing this to the limit/playing a little loose with it in Boston. But ultimately, the 40-man issues are very, very marginal. You might lose one slightly interesting prospect because you tried to keep another. It might be worth being a little skeptical or annoyed that they may have used one on a player like the Korean pitcher, but “anger” is going way too far over such a trivial resource.

    2) Money. This one is obvious. When you waste some, you have less to spend on other stuff.

    3) Playing time. This is actually the scarcest resource of all, and it frequently gets overlooked. A lot of times when people say “what’s the risk, it’s a small contract?!” they are overlooking the scarce, finite nature of playing time that confers upon it great value.

    • baseballet

      4) fans being able to enjoy watching the player play baseball while they wait three years for the Cubs’ best prospects to join the team.

    • Ben

      Agreed Kyle.

      Though, our 40 man issues are a little more pressing. If the Cubs.com 40 man is accurate, I don’t think Stewart or Schierholtz is on there. And, I don’t really see any easy way to cut position players to add them.

      • willis

        They are not because their deals are not “official” yet. But with them we are going to have to move some people off. Plenty of dead weight on there which, if we lose them, who cares really. Still, there’s so much added crap on there it’s tough to stomach.

  • Randy

    Lets see… Did I not hear Theo say that every season is sacred. So which is it we throw crap on the field or try to make a run at the playoffs. I totally get the rebuilding and I am jacked about the future. My problem lies in the fact that I do not want to see another 100 loss season if in fact it is sacred. I have said it 100 times, you can rebuild and still be competitive. If they were to sign a Bourn and lets they would have signed Youk to a 1 year deal and added a little better pitching, how does that effect the kids moving up the ladder. It doesnt as no one is ready at 3B and you do not have any pitching ready. You cant wait for 2 or 3 years for the kids ot come up. Make them work their way up. Again a catch 22 but I still say you can compete and for all I know maybe some deals are coming before February.

  • cubfanincardinalland

    Saw the movie “Moneyball” last night. Line in the movie made me think of the Cubs, and how we payed the salaries of guys after trading them.
    David Justice was sort of big timing when he was with the A’s and being a bit of an attitude problem. Billy Beane tells him, “The Yankees are paying you 3.5 million dollars this year to play against them.” Kind of got his attention.

  • Reno

    Patience is rare in today’s world, but necessary in this case. Why overspend millions of dollars on free agents continue to be mediocre for years and years? Let’s give Theo time to put his plan into place. In a year, he has assembled three-quarters of a very good infield, and some other pieces. And from my perspective, the Cubs played smarter fundamental baseball last year. They lost because they had less talent, not because they didn’t hustle or made bonehead mistakes. I see a few positive steps on the path that Theo and gang have laid out.
    And, by the way, I’ve been a Cub fan for over 50 years, so I have as much right to be frustrated as anyone.

    • Troy


    • brickhouse

      Theo added Rizzo to the infield – Barney & Castro were already there. As far as spending money it is to improve the team and not be mediocre.

  • Captainplanet54

    Comedy Podcast wise I love Comedy Bang Bang, it always makes me laugh.

  • Abe Froman

    I’ve been into podcasts for a couple years. Here is my list of favorites, not including that fantastic upstart ‘Bleacher Nation’ in ranked order starting with my favorite:

    – This American Life (1 hr) – The Godfather of podcasts. Had a run as a show on Showtime.
    – Comedy Bang Bang (1 hr) – Comedians chat with the host while usually one person is improving a character, i.e. Paul F. Tompkins as Werner Herzog, absolutely hilarious. The episode ‘Farts and Procreation’ is near and dear to me. Now a show on IFC.
    – RadioLab (1 hr) – Science and curiosity can be a fun pair.
    – The Ricky Gervais Podcast (various lengths) – Now a show on HBO, may be classified as an audiobook and cost money, worth every penny, especially if the show hasn’t ruined any punchlines.
    – WTF (1 hr) – Marc Maron interviewing famous people, usually comedians with an interesting perspective.
    – The Moth – (6 min – 20 min) There is a ‘Moth’ theatre in New York City where both amateurs and famous authors/comedians/actors tell personal stories that are consistently entertaining.
    – All Songs Considered (1 hour) – NPR music podcast, has the top 20 albums of the year as one of the latest, which is a must listen.
    – All Concerts Considered (varies) – Full length live concerts from a good mix of artists who tend to have more critical acclaim than popularity.

  • davmor

    Theo didn’t say every season is sacred, he said every chance to win is sacred. Meaning that if somehow the bargain acquistions made while doing the rebuild the right way did better than expected and we wound up in the hunt near the deadline, the Cubs would look to buy rather than sell to make a run. However, he went on to add that even in a scenario like that, long term health of the franchise would override short term success. Meaning he wouldn’t move a vital piece of the future to do a short term patch. Remember the goal of the rebuild is to put a consistent winner on the field and be in a position to make multiple October appearances, a totally different philosophy (and one I agree with) than previous regimes.

    • http://thecubcontrarian.blogspot.com/ Kyle

      He said every season is a chance to win, and every chance to win is sacred. By the transitive property, he took the position that every season is sacred.

      • Troy

        Nice spin

        • David

          How is that spin?

      • Internet Random

        … which would include the chance we have today to win the World Series in 2016 if we don’t squander our resources along the way.

        • Lou

          Or maybe by the end of the decade–but who’s counting right?

          • Internet Random

            They’re not mutually exclusive. I’ll take both.

    • mudge

      Right. I think they were trying to put a good team together last year, and if the bullpen hadn’t blown up for the first six weeks, they’d have had a better record than 2011. Getting to the deadline with no chance, they moved veterans for the future. So after July we had a AAA pitching staff and none of them stepped up and it was a drag. And that’s how they’ll play this year as well – if they aren’t in the running, they’ll move valuable veterans at the deadline. If you’ve got tickets after July and you’re pissed about it, it’s understandable. If you want to win a World Series down the line, it’s understandable as well. It doesn’t mean they went into last year, or next, with a cynical plan to lose a hundred games. I enjoyed the team last year, Rizzo, Barney’s defense, Soriano’s year, the results of better coaching and positioning, the way they were able to turn Marmol around. Soriano started laying off the low outside slider. Castro became more selective. We didn’t see this quality of coaching from Cubs teams past. It’s a rocky road, but it bodes well.

    • Randy

      He did say every season is sacred. Go back and check your facts. You dony have to give up vital players of the future. Just spend some money to get better. AND for the record for older folks every season is sacred.

  • baseballet

    I don’t see why ownership should be commended for remaining within the strict confines of a miserly actuarial table. Sure, I can marvel at the high IQ analysis and the discipline required to slowly create something out of nothing. If you squint enough to ignore two or three years of horrible baseball then it can seem like alchemy. But in the meantime Theo could throw a couple additional quality players into his magic cauldron without costing the king too much treasure.

    • mudge

      I believe that he will. The off-season is young.

  • Spencer

    I think part of the frustration is probably the Cubs aren’t signing big name people, and when big names or medium names come up in Cubs connected rumors, they get dumped on for not being a good fit for the Cubs in 2013, with the exception of Anibal Sanchez.

    • TWC

      they get dumped on for not being a good fit for the Cubs in 2013

      Dumped on by supporters (of “The Theo/Jed Plan”)? I’m fairly certain that no one in the Cubs FO has made any comments specifically about weather or not any particular player is a “good fit” in 2013.

      • Spencer

        I wasn’t talking about the front office at all. It just seems like at this point people’s reactions to certain signings should be expected and not out of left field: Small, low-risk moves are going to be criticized by those not supportive of current direction of the rebuild, and are going to be met with “meh” and understanding by those supportive of the current direction of the rebuild. This shouldn’t be something surprising anymore. Tedious, yes. But not surprising.

        That was a slight digression from my first point, though. What I attempting to say is that one can hardly complain about misplaced anger about signing low-risk players when 1) it should be expected by now as written above, and 2) when medium to big names come up in Cubs related rumors, they get cast as not a good fit for the organization right now.

        • TWC

          Oh, yeah, I know what you meant. And I agree. I think I obfuscated in my attempt to clarify.

          • Spencer