A Happy Easter to those of you who do the church thing or the bunny thing (or both). In our Easter baskets today? Opening Night baseball – the Astros host the Rangers tonight in real, actual, meaningful baseball. The 2013 season has arrived. Finally.
- Darwin Barney on his knee cut yesterday, which generously allowed him to see the bone, per the Sun-Times: “It’s not fun. You just can’t believe something like that would happen, but that’s the game. You have to go after pop-ups. Unfortunately for me, there was for some reason a concrete slab right there at the edge of the field.”
- The Sun-Times terms Barney’s immediate future as a “likely” trip to the disabled list, though the doctors are evaluating today whether Barney can play adequately while the cut heals.
- The Cubs lost that game against the Astros, by the way, 6-3. The Astros went with an all prospect lineup, and the future would look bright if you could extrapolate one exhibition game. Cubs regulars played just a couple innings in this one, but none of the prospects who played had a particularly notable game, save for shortstop prospect Arismendy Alcantara, who had two hits. Travis Wood started the game and struck out 7 in 4.1, which is what you’d like to see against a youthful lineup. But what you don’t want to see is three walks and five hits. Carlos Marmol had a bad outing, yadda yadda yadda …
- In addition to releasing Hayden Simpson, Dontrelle Willis and Michael Brenly yesterday, the Cubs also released righty Brett Wallach (the “best prospect” the Cubs received in the ill-fated Ted Lilly/Ryan Theriot/Blake DeWitt trade), knuckleballer Joe Zeller, and lefty Casey Harman.
- The Padres have released outfielder Kyung-min Na, who is best remembered as “the other guy” the Cubs sent to the Padres in the Andrew Cashner/Anthony Rizzo trade. (h/t Alex.) That was a pretty brief evaluation period for the Padres, given that Na was there just one year and just turned 21 in December. That said, his year in the Padres’ system was awful, and they’re very deep. Wonder if he’ll find his way back to the Cubs – probably not, since the new guys are the ones who traded him away in the first place.
- Paul Sullivan asks nine questions for the upcoming season.
- We’re going to see some roster moves today or tomorrow morning, with the Cubs needing to roster Brent Lillibridge and, presumably, Hisanori Takahashi (and needing to call someone up if Darwin Barney is sent to the disabled list – potentially Alberto Gonzalez). The 40-man stands at 39, so one more move will be needed, though it’s likely to be something like Scott Baker to the 60-day DL. The Cubs will scour that waiver wire right up until the end, though.