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stoveThe latest from around the rumor mill …

  • The Cubs’ ears have to be perking up when they hear things like this: the New York Post is confirming that that Scott Hairston’s relatively modest request to the Mets was two years at $4 million per year. The Mets countered at one year and $2 million(!!!). I know that money isn’t everything, but the Cubs can and should beat that kind of weak offer if they have interest in Hairston in the first place. Even at, say, two years and $3 million per year, Hairston offers value. To my eye, he offers quite a bit of value at that level.
  • The Hairston decision is expected this week, by the way, according to Jim Bowden.
  • Bruce Levine reports that the Cubs and Jeff Samardzija are just going to work on a one-year deal for 2013, rather than trying to put together an extension at this time. Given that Samardzija has had just the one year of converted success in the rotation, and given that he’s already made over $10 million in his career (so there’s no rush to get paid on his end), the waiting doesn’t really surprise me. If he repeats his 2012 success, however, you can expect that an extension next offseason will be a priority. Still, he’s under control through 2015.
  • Jon Morosi thinks that the structure of David Price’s 2013 deal with the Rays – $5 million bonus, $1 million in 2013, and $4 million deferred to 2014 – suggests the Rays may shop him next offseason in the hopes that the trading team can help them out on some of that latter $4 million. I suppose, but deferring money, from a financial perspective, is something teams always want to do. If they’re going to shop a player of Price’s caliber, it’ll be because of the money they’ll owe him long-term if they tried to keep him, not because of a few million bucks they can save. You can bet, however, that teams like the Cubs are already counting their prospect bullets in the chamber to determine whether making a huge offer for Price next year is realistic.
  • Dave Cameron at FanGraphs chatted about a variety of things, and said “might happen” when asked about the Cubs trying to pick up Michael Bourn and Kyle Lohse on two-year deals with an eye toward flipping them midseason (recall, we’ve discussed here the possibility that the Cubs could try and pick up multiple free agents tied to compensation because the “cost” of doing so drops with each successive free agent signed (i.e., Bourn would cost a second round, but Lohse would then cost only a third rounder)). It’s an extreme unlikelihood for a ton of reasons, as I said before – and, if Bourn and Lohse were going to sign somewhere to get flipped, they’d want it to be on one-year deals, so they could hit free agency again immediately without being tied to draft pick compensation – but it’s fun to talk about.
  • Speaking of chats, Bruce Levine did his weekly thing yesterday, and … (1) the Cubs would trade Alfonso Soriano “in a minute” if they got the right player back, even if it meant eating salary; (2) the Cubs would love to pick up a young third baseman like Mike Olt or Lonnie Chisenhall before the season starts, but have so far been thwarted in those efforts; (3) if/when the Cubs shop Matt Garza, third base might be the spot they try to fill; (4) speaking of which, Bruce doesn’t have a sense from the Cubs on whether they’d prefer to trade Garza or extend him, given the elbow issues (this was discussed at length on this week’s episode of the podcast); (5) the Cubs have talked to the Diamondbacks about Justin Upton, but an Arizona source tells Bruce that it would take Starlin Castro, which just isn’t happening (Bruce also mentions that the Cubs “are not in a position” to trade someone like Javier Baez, either); (6) the Cubs would consider signing someone like Brian Wilson if they got a good deal, but they are focused on dealing Carlos Marmol right now (wouldn’t those two moves work in tandem?); (7) Jorge Soler could climb the system very fast according to folks who Bruce has talked to, but he still needs another year and a half in the minors; (8) the only realistic surprises for Convention week are a Soriano trade or a Marmol trade; and (9) the Cubs could use a quality right-handed option in the outfield (which screams Hairston, though Bruce did not mention him by name).
  • Melrosepad

    Hairston makes sense as a replacement for Campana on the 40 man. Not too expensive and has some pop that could help if/when Soriano leaves.

  • Marcel91

    IMO Hairston provides OK defense and some RH pop but aside from that he’s not that good a player…OBP was bad in his “breakout” year last year which resulted in a 2 WAR player but he was just above replacement level the years prior. I could see why the Mets balked at 2yr/8mil. Too much for a role player.

    Rather take my chances with Sappelt who should give you just above replacement level value playing for the ML minimum.

  • Rizzo 44

    I love the moves the Cubs have made so far this offseason. Only wish they could add a little O to go along with the Pitching. I still feel the Cubs could send Garza to the Rangers if healthy or maybe even do a trade with the Indians or the D Backs. I would love to see Upton in RF, but don’t think that will happen. I would really like to see the Tigers and Cubs do a deal with Marmol Barney for Porcello and maybe a top 20 guy in the Tiger system. I’m going to go out and call it now Cubs make the Postseason as the last Wildcard team and win the game to get to the next round of the Playoffs without Garza. I say we win 89 games. Rizzo will have a monster year and Soriano if he is still a Cub will rake with the smaller bat early in the season. Castro will see his numbers go up and we will have a someone break out as a rookie by mid July to help with the Playoff push.

    • Marcel91

      In the weaker NL it’s possible if the Reds and Cards somehow underachieve and the Pirates don’t defy logic by being good again.

    • EQ76

      For this team to win 89 games next year, Rizzo and Castro need to have huge, all-star type seasons, Soriano needs to have a repeat year of last year, Stewart needs to hit 20+ HRS, Barney needs to be a .280+ hitter, Castillo needs to have a big break out year, we need another good hitting OF and all the pitchers we took chances on (Baker, Feldman, Villenueva – need to all have really good years) plus Shark needs to win 17 games and we need to hold on to Garza and have him remain healthy…

      and all that my friend, probably isn’t happening.

      • SirCub

        That’s one way the Cubs could win 89 games. There are lots of ther ways they could achieve it, too though (although your scenario might be the most likely). So I wouldn’t say that all of that needs to happen for them to win 90 games.

        • EQ76

          true.. maybe give or take a few of my scenarios.. but still, lots of guys need to have big years for this current roster to be a contender.. I don’t think those scenarios are impossible… that’s kind of what happened in Baltimore last season. it is possible, but not likely.

        • http://Isa Voice of reason

          I don’t know if you’re joking or serious because this team will lose at least 90 games and if they trade soriano they could lose 100 plus again.

          They had no offense at all last year and the only addition they made over last year offensively was signing schierholtz and he cant hit his way out of a wet paper sack. And he is your starting right fielder!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

          The only offense is soriano and Castillo and rizzo!! That’s it, period!! And, what if one of those three doesn’t do what they did last year? They could lose more games this year than last.

          The front office expects to lose 90 games so why would ANYONE think otherwise?

          • LubDub

            and castro

          • Brian

            Because we have brains that work and can form our own opinions!

      • Marcel91

        Unlike previous years, most of those things you mentioned are not beyond reason. That is progress. I’ll be fine with .500 as long as we show vast improvement throughout the organization. 2014 is the year when everything should begin to fall into place.

        • EQ76

          True.. the mental side of this team could improve as well as the fundamentals. Honestly, though this team doesn’t look any better than the 2012 team did to start the year, I do expect improvement.

    • Brian

      If this team wins 89, they will win the division!

  • North Side Irish

    Waaaaay off topic, but I can’t decide if this Manti Teo story is crazy or awesome. Did he really make up the dead girlfriend story?

    • Twiz

      Long story short. His grandmother died, less than 24 hours later his ex-girfriend, who he was still good friends with passed away as well. They were not dating at the time, but were still good friends

      • DarthHater

        Deadspin has a long article claiming that the girlfriend/ex-girlfriend never existed and is a hoax. I have no idea what the truth is, but if Deadspin is wrong, I imagine they may get sued.

      • North Side Irish

        Except now they’re saying she never existed and he made the whole story up. There is no record of anyone with that name who died on that day according the SSA…no one by that name ever went to Stanford…the pictures of her were stolen from someone’s Facebook page.

        It’s a Deadspin report, so you always have to wait and see, but this is going to be huge if it is true.

        • North Side Irish

          Now Notre Dame is claiming that he was the victim of a hoax and never knew. Call in the Catfish guys…

          • http://www.michigangoat.blogspot.com MichiganGoat

            And it looks like it was more con to extract money, I guess they were hoping that he’d pay a memorial fund or pay to keep it quiet. Either way I’m surprised it was shut down quicker seems like an easy con to shut down.

    • Jacob

      Just read it. Tha’t freaking crazy! The writer did their research too.. I’m very interested to see where this goes!

    • DarthHater

      Okay, I apologize in advance for offending anyone, but this is definitely the funniest tweet I have seen regarding the Manti Te’o situation:

      “This is what happens when you name schools after ladies who tell people they got pregnant without having sex.”

  • Jason

    Personally, the Cubs could contend this year. The Central isn’t that strong, the Reds the weakest contender, but they are still good. A lot depends on how Garza comes back, but this team is already deeper than last years by a mile One trade for Giancarlo Stanton would give the cubs enough bats to contend, even with a hole at 3B. Before one argues prospects, Stanton will be an elite player (as long as healthy) for the next decade. Not all prospects would go, and Solar and Almora are the two I would want to keep above all others. If Brett Jackson, Trey McNutt, Josh Vitters, Jay Jackson and Matt Sczuzr(sp?) went as the package, the Cubs would be getting a great player who might be the next Barry Bonds or Griffey, Jr. type. We know the Marlins, and they might get 2-3 of them turned into solid players, and if the Cubs need one of them back 2-4 years from now, we make a trade. The minors are deep enough to handle this trade when you can see 30 guys who could break into the bigs at some point. The Mets and Yankees have less than 5 each like that. If I am Theo and Jed, I make this trade. You have RF for the next 10 years or longer and plenty of time to develop more minor league talent.

    • Edwin

      If I am Theo and Jed, I trade Jay Jackson for Justin Verlander. I’d do that deal in a heartbeat. And then if Jay Jackson turns into a great pitcher, I trade for him too.

      • DarthHater

        Verlander is too old. For Jay Jackson, the Cubs should get back Clayton Kershaw!

        • Tremendous Slouch

          Hahahahahahaha… Wow, I’ve been smoking the wrong shit, apparently… This guy needs to share… puff, puff, pass dude!

          • DarthHater

            ;-)

            [img]http://www.sigbjorn.org/funstuff/images/doobie.jpg[/img]

            • http://www.michigangoat.blogspot.com MichiganGoat

              Thanks for airbrushing the goat out that- ah college

              • DarthHater

                Nah, the goat is inside the doobie. Cheaper than buying that horny weed crap.

                • http://www.michigangoat.blogspot.com MichiganGoat

                  Where did you think the Vitiamin Shoppe got the idea?

            • Tremendous Slouch

              Quality Bud! Hey man… Like lets trade Campana for Trout… Wait, wait… hear me out…

              • http://www.michigangoat.blogspot.com MichiganGoat

                If we packaged Vitters, Jackson, and 5 bench players at Daytona – then sure Trout is doable ;)

                • DarthHater

                  Steve Trout, right?

                  • http://cdn.bleacherreport.net/images_root/slides/photos/001/350/425/caddyshack1_display_image.jpg?1318268362 Tremendous Slouch

                    Is there another one? :)

                • Edwin

                  I forgot Jackson was even still on the Cubs. Is he still on the Cubs?

              • Marcel91

                While we’re at it…. calling it now Ian Stewart for Ryan Zimmerman + Prospects. Nationals have Rendon in the wings so they feel Stewart can breakout and they can trade him for prospects when Rendon is ready Zimmerman fits the short and long term plan for us.

                IT MAKES PERFECT SENSE GUISE! watch Theo/Jed make it happen!

                lol LMAO you knew a day couldn’t pass here without ridiculous fantasy trade scenarios. But at least you guys turned it into something actually humorous…..

            • JBarnes

              Wtf? They said they would wait for me to lite that thing up…

    • http://www.michigangoat.blogspot.com MichiganGoat

      That makes me smile, I love it when Cub fans think we can get Stanton for a group of B/C prospects. If we have a shot at Stanton (which I don’t think we do) it would take ALL THE PROSPECTS (which I would support for Stanton) but to think Soler & Almora could be kept is funny. Thanks for the smile needed that on a dreary Michigan evening.

    • http://Isa Voice of reason

      Once you get Stanton for those players then would you trade Barney for Zimmerman with the nationals? I don’t know if I would. I might want another player with Zimmerman?

      This is easy to rebuild the cubs! Theo doesn’t know what he is doing.

      Jason is right with these trades.

      How about dejesus for mike trout? The angels would get a veteran outfielder for trout who might not develop after his rookie year. Why wouldn’t the angels do that?

      Then you go and get price for 6 players to be named later.

      We would win the world series!!!!!!!!! Go cubbies!!!!!!!!!!!

  • http://www.michigangoat.blogspot.com MichiganGoat

    Prospect bullets, 1000 missiles- you starting to concern me Brett. Those EBS really need to come back so you don’t go creative crazy. ;)

  • Tremendous Slouch

    Stupid ? – How do I add a picture to my posting profile… Not embeded in the post, but a monacher so to speak…

    • DarthHater

      Go to gravatar.com and follow the instructions.

      • Tremendous Slouch

        Very Cool… Gracias!

        • DarthHater

          Also, be aware that after you upload your pic at gravatar, it takes a half hour or so before it will show up here. So be patient.

        • Tremendous Slouch

          Gothca.. again thanks!

  • Terry

    any trade is possible. but i don’t see this FO trading for Stanton or Price. given their stance that they are building the farm system up. just hope for them, that some of these prospects work out. however i think they are counting to much on that, but we’ll see. just my opinion(putting that here, cause i know those people who throw the word troll, anytime anyone isn’t 100% on board with Theo)

    • BWA

      Stanton, no. Price, maybe next offseason depending on the development of the young farm system.

  • Rcleven

    12m Brandon McCarthy Brandon McCarthy ‏@BMcCarthy32

    *Manti Te’o watches Clint Eastwood speaking to an empty chair* *nods approvingly*

  • Die hard

    Only reason to keep Soriano is to hopefully avg 18000 per game which is break even

  • Rmoody100

    Morse to the Mariners.

  • Xavier

    Porn site popped up on Android

    • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

      Thanks, and sorry. It’s currently being investigated, and I hope to have a resolution soon. Unfortunately it’s out of my control (and, sadly, it’s an intermittent problem on a number of sites over the past few months – the people behind it have been exceedingly good at concealing just how they’re doing it, because people still don’t know if it’s an advertisement problem, an app on your phone problem, a router problem, or some combination of all of those things triggering the bad redirect when the conditions are just right). I’m keeping on it, though.

      • Xavier

        Its okay. Just thought you should be aware thanks.

      • Richard Nose

        I don’t see it as a problem.

  • JBarnes

    Upton just doesn’t make sense to me. I get the whole idea of getting major league talent when it’s available but if the FO believes Soler is the real deal then why trade anything of value for Upton? They seem to be very similar players.

  • taits06

    Of course the cubs FO would TRY to trade for either Stanton or Price, but the problem with that is… this FO is only going to offer what those players are worth. Everyone on here knows that its going to take a massive over-pay to get either of these players, and that’s not how this team is going to be run. It’s a pipe dream if you ask me. I’m all for trading prospects for proven talent, but I just don’t think we have the arms to get it done, even if the FO thought it was worth a try.

    • CubFan Paul

      The farm system will be in a totally different state come this time next year, as in, it’ll be much much better than it is now (promotions & deadline trades)

      Trading for Stanton/Price is a pipe dream now but everyone with sense knows it won’t be next winter.

  • LWeb23

    Stanton, Price, Upton: None of those kind of acquisitions are going to happen anytime soon with this front office. The only way you get those guys is if you completely overpay, which Theo and Jed are too smart to do at this point. The only way you make that trade is if you think you that you are only one piece away from a championship team. Next offseason or trade deadline 2014? Yeah, maybe we can afford to make that kind of deal. Next offseason may even be pushing it.

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