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ian stewart cubsYesterday, The Wife and I were returning from the second stage of our mini-vacation (the picking-up-the-kids-from-the-grandparents stage) when the Cubs DFA’d Carlos Marmol. Thankfully, although I was driving, I frequently ask The Wife to “check in” for me on various items across the ‘net. She saw the DFA news, tweeted it for me, and we quickly pulled off the highway at the next exit to frantically find some WI-FI. A nearby McDonald’s had it (even out in their parking lot), and The Wife surreptitiously snapped this picture as I typed from behind the driver’s seat. Even more thankfully, neither of the small children exploded in fits of fury with the car stopped.

  • In part because of that harried set of circumstances, in part because of its relative position to the Marmol news, and in part because it’s about a AAA player whose time with the Cubs was clearly at a close, the Ian Stewart release didn’t get a whole lot of treatment yesterday (here or elsewhere). In that way, Stewart – who’d become the least popular Cub, behind even Marmol – probably avoided some ugly media attention. Was that by design? The timing of the two decisions could have been coincidental – the Cubs had to make the Marmol roster move yesterday, and Stewart’s suspension had just ended and the appeal had been decided. But the announcements coming at the exact same time was necessarily intentional. I doubt the Cubs were looking to protect Stewart by burying his release under the Marmol DFA, which everyone would have known would get more attention. And I don’t think they Cubs were trying to avoid any embarrassment. But you can’t deny that the whole Stewart saga is something of a black eye for the front office (you could argue that it is, to date, the only really clear mistake they’ve made), and it now will be discussed a great deal less than it would have been otherwise. Shrug.
  • Kerry Wood found a body in Belmont Harbor yesterday in Chicago, which is newsworthy, but not jokeworthy. I know everyone wants to make the Andre Dawson joke, but let’s not. A 40-year-old man was reported missing from a nursing home, and then was found dead. That’s a sad story, not a funny one. I doubt Kerry Wood finds the episode all that funny either.
  • Dale Sveum says that the celebration in the streets of Wrigleyville would be 10 times what it was for the Blackhawks if the Cubs ever won it all. I’m not going to argue with him. Mostly because I don’t want to feel the heart pangs associated with starting to let myself think about the Cubs winning it all …
  • More on AA pitching prospect Kyle Hendricks, whose manager (at least) thinks he’s going to have a great deal of success in the future, and is underrated because he doesn’t light up the radar gun.
  • Speaking of Tennessee Smokies starting pitchers, Alberto Cabrera is turning it on, and is getting some praise over at Baseball America. His second chance at starting has been going well so far – 3.53 ERA over 91.2 innings, striking out 9.2 per 9 and walking 3.3 per 9 – but, at 24 and having spent a lot of time at AA, the Cubs probably are eager to see Cabrera back up at AAA soon. He’s also already on the 40-man roster, so the Cubs need to know what they’ve got in Cabrera – i.e., can he be a plausible rotation competitor for the big club in Spring Training 2014?
  • The Cubs have a couple Cuban defectors playing for the Boise Hawks, and their story is worth a read.
  • Dan

    More importantly, did the Mrs. get you a McFlurry as well or did you get shafted?

    • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

      Thankfully, she thought of me. I didn’t get to eat it until it was liquid with M&Ms in it, though.

  • Kyle

    I don’t even feel like celebrating Ian Stewart’s release. I did that when he was non-tendered and he came back like a horror show villain.

  • JM 23

    I preferred the “Was it Carlos Marmol?” joke over the Andre Dawson one.

    • BluBlud

      Still not funny

  • BluBlud

    Albrto Cabrera is playing very well, and will definitely get a shot at the rotation in ST. I would not be suprised if he even got a September start.

    Hendricks is a very good pitcher, but i refuse to jump on his bandwagon. I was on the Barrett Loux bandwagon and that hasn’t gone so well. I think he can be a productive major leaguer, but I’ll hold off until he gets to the league.

  • Serious Cubs Fan

    I Chicago the Stewart and Marmol News got almost completely overshadowed because of the Blackhawks winning the Stanley Cup. I think I heard the the Stewart thing mention once briefly on sportstalk radio yesterday. Very convenient time to release DFA Marmol and release stewart. Nice jon Theo/Jed

  • Dustin S

    I was glad to see that there wasn’t a huge outcry about Theo making a mistake on him. It was a mistake, they’re moving on. At this point the good FO moves have outweighed the bad (even with Jackson’s woes) overall, and it’s nice to see the BN’ers recognizing that.

  • Justin

    Obviously the Stewart trade was a mistake in hindsight. But if the front office hit it out of the park with all their trades what other teams would trade with them? It’s probably good to miss from time to time. At least we only lose out on a couple of bench players. Although, bringing Stewart back this yr was just stupid.

  • oswego chris

    I am sorry, but in regards to pitching prospects…I don’t want the phrase “doesn’t light up the radar gun” anywhere to be found…getting minor leaguers out on location, guile, and secondary pitches is one thing…I would much rather have the “sits at 95, touches 98″ comments to accompany my future hurlers…

  • Rich H

    As someone that has happened across a body before (for me it was actually pieces of said body) let me say that it is not joke worth. I can understand that it is news worthy but a person is no longer with us.
    Kerry Wood is probably sick with all the imagery that being involved with such things brings. Hopefully he can move on and it not be something that causes him to dwell in the places that it puts your mind.

    • Cheryl

      Right on!!! Something like that is not joke worthy. Its sad.

  • forlines

    Glad that Stewart is gone, and also glad that I don’t have to deal with the associated near heart attack every time Marmol stepped on the mound, but I’ll miss Marmol, even if it’s just a very small bit.

    That really sucks for Kerry Wood and the guy who ended up drowning though. Doesn’t really seem like something to joke about, so thank you for asking people to remain respectful Brett, even though some people obviously won’t.

  • Mr. Gonzo

    I’ll steal a mare and ride it to Wrigleyville all the way from Texas when the Cubs finally win… I shall name her Camilla and feed her nothing but flaming hot funyuns and dead cardinals.

  • RoughRiider

    “Kerry Wood found a body in Belmont Harbor yesterday in Chicago, which is newsworthy, but not jokeworthy. I know everyone wants to make the Andre Dawson joke, but let’s not.”

    NOT EVERYONE. Instead of jokes it should be prayers for the poor mans soul and for the comfort of his family.

  • fromthemitten

    meanwhile DJ Lemehieu has been tearing it up for the Rockies this year

  • Mike

    I think Marmol’s DFA should have been made simultaneously with Sveum getting the boot. Sveum couldn’t handle a pitching staff if he had an all-star team full of great arms. Instead, Sveum used Marmol because Marmol had experience (awful loss to Mets on June 16th). Sveum just doesn’t have what it takes. He can’t learn from his mistakes with Marmol until it is way to late. I don’t see Sveum getting any better once the Cubs have a much better team. I’d rather see Alfonso Soriano manage the rest of the year…couldn’t be any worse.

    • #1lahairfan

      This comment doesn’t make any sense, and he was probably nudged into using Marmol as a closer at the start of the year by the FO. As for the Jume 16 debacle, I hate to say this but it was perfectly defendable to use him in that spot.

  • #1lahairfan

    In the case of Cabrera, would you take a #3/4 starter or a lights out reliever that has closer potential?

    • Kyle

      I’ll take any value he can give us. He’s 24 and in his fourth stint in AA. I’m not exactly penciling him in, despite the great season so far.

      • willis

        Yep, anything we can get is a bonus. I’d say he’s a reliever eventually. He needs to get a shot in AAA soon to see if he’s really gotten that much better. His first go around there was a disaster.

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