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graph going upBloomberg has come out with an extensive evaluation/projection of MLB team values and revenues, similar to the annual effort by Forbes. In it, Bloomberg concludes that the Chicago Cubs are worth $1.32 billion – when factoring in some external holdings – and bring in annual revenues of $320 million (I believe that’s a 2013 estimate). That valuation places the Cubs as the fifth most valuable franchise, behind the Yankees ($3.28 billion), Dodgers ($2.1 billion), Red Sox ($2.06 billion), and Mets ($2.05 billion). Note the very, very steep drop-off from the Mets to the Cubs.

In the Forbes analysis, which was based on 2012 numbers, the Chicago Cubs franchise was valued at an even $1 billion. It turns out that Bloomberg and Forbes are valuing the Cubs at the same figure. How so? Bloomberg says the Cubs’ “team value” is $1 billion – same as Forbes – but it throws in the Cubs’ $110 million share of MLB Advanced Media (each team owns an equal portion), $181 million for the Cubs’ share in CSN Chicago, and $32 million for “related business,” aka “other stuff the Cubs own.”

So long as you remember, as with the Forbes report, these are estimates based on whatever information Bloomberg can scrounge up (and is likely to be disputed by the teams), there are some interesting things to see in Bloomberg’s piece. The Cubs’ $320 million in revenue places them fourth in baseball, behind the Dodgers ($325 million) and ahead of the Phillies ($315 million). Bloomberg places the Cubs’ media rights at $90 million annually, which is much higher than previous reports (which have generally had them in the $50 to $60 million range), and is 6th best in baseball. The Cubs fall dramatically short in “sponsorship,” which is no surprise, given the limited advertising presently at Wrigley Field. The Cubs are just 19th in baseball in that area, making just $18 million annually (that will go up dramatically post-renovation).

Something that Bloomberg notes, which I hadn’t seen calculated down to the dollar before, is the amount of money the Cubs give up in revenue sharing. It’s a hell of a lot more than I thought. Bloomberg puts it at $39 million in 2013, third most in baseball. Contrast that with the Cardinals, who give up just $6 million, the Brewers, who gain $19 million, the Reds, who gain $22 million, and the Pirates, who gain $35 million. When we talk about “missing” revenue that the Cubs are or are not spending in-house, don’t forget that $39 million.

It’s a great interactive piece Bloomberg has put together, so do check it out and play with the graph.

  • hansman

    Wow, that is a $74M swing from the Cubs to the Pirates. If true, good God Jim.

  • ETS

    How is the revenue sharing amount determined?

  • Rich

    Geez the Cubs make more on concessions than Tampa on gate receipts..
    BEER HERE!

  • Chuck

    “Cubs make more on concessions than Tampa on gate receipts..”

    And all Tampa concessions are Early Bird Specials.

    • Rich

      HA HA !

  • cavemencubbie

    I have mentioned this before, but the Cubs are a small market team playing in a large market city. This is due to the constraints of Wrigley Field, the neighborhood and Chicago politics. For all the sabermath, statistical guru’s, the one non variable in the past 100 years of futility is Wrigley Field. The Cards, Pirates, Reds, Mets and Yankees all play in modern stadiums. The Red Sox play in a stadium that has been renovated which is in a non-resedential neighborhood. It is time for a new ball park in a suburb that wants the Cubs not just as a cash cow to feed the political pigs.

    • ssckelley

      I agree, but ideally the best option is still to renovate Wrigley. But let’s make it happen already! I am tired of the cat and mouse game they are playing with the roof top owners. Either start on the renovations or start making the plans in a suburb. If the Cubs were to seriously start working with suburbs that would put an incredible amount of pressure on the roof top owners. Without the Cubs those businesses would cease to exist, unless they wanted to remain open as a small neighborhood bar.

    • Voice of Reason

      Cavemencubbie,

      I’m pretty sure the Ricketts did their due diligence on the Cubs AND Wrigley Field. They concluded that in order to buy the Cubs that Wrigley Field had to be part of the sale.

      That said, why do you think they have constraints that cannot be overcome by some renovations and modifications to Wrigley Field, which the Ricketts are ready to do?

      And, if the Ricketts were going to leave Wrigley Field, what in the world would they do with it? They would have a ballpark that doesn’t have a team playing in it? And, remember, they own it!

      • C. Steadman

        itd be cool to move Kane County there if the slim possiblity the Cubs ever move(Ive never been to the Cougars park so dont know how nice it is or the surrounding area)…i know the minor league team has its own owners but if they remain a Cub affiliate then i’m sure Rickets and the KC owners could work a deal

    • Funn Dave

      “I have mentioned this before, but the Cubs are a small market team playing in a large market city.”

      I mean, you’re not exactly breaking any new ground here considering that I’ve seen that exact same phrase posted here dozens of times this season. But how can you possibly say that after reading this article? They’re the fifth most valuable franchise. They have hella money. They have hella fans. They have hella history. How on earth are they small market?

  • FastBall

    Yep. There you have it. Want to play with the big boys you gotta make some changes. I have thought all along if you keep spending money on a dump pretty soon you are broke. Could have spent same money on something shiney and new and it would probably return even more than a jumbo tron everybody in the neighborhood is going raise hell over.

  • Jeff

    The fifth most valuable franchise and revenues of approx. $320M a year, yet there is no money flexibility for payroll at the major league level????

    What gives??? Ricketts needs to stop skimming profits to pay for buying the team and start letting Theo put it back into payroll.

    • hansman

      Something is fishy about that revenue total. They just don’t juve with what the team sold for in 2009, unless they were sold at an incredible discount due to the structure of the deal.

      • Cubbie Blues

        I hate it when things don’t juve well.

        • DarthHater

          Oh, sure, blame the juves for everything.

          • hansman

            Damn dirty apps!

            • Eternal pessemist

              Classic.

      • Scotti

        The Ricketts were not the highest bidder (Cuban offered $1 billion). The structure of the deal keeps taxes off the $830 million in profit that the Trib made (purchased for $20 million). And the validation for the Cubs has gone up (Mesa developments, Budweiser deal, DR facilities, etc.) as has the entire league (better ad revenue from MLB TV and Internet deals) which gets funneled to each team (which raises each team’s valuation). Also, the Trib still owns 5% (worth $65 million per Bloomberg).

        • Kyle

          Well, the structure of the deal *attempts* to keep taxes off the books. The IRS is still not too sure about that.

        • JoeyCollins

          Cuban never offered $1 Billion, he was never allowed to make much of a formal offer. He had mentioned that going into the process he wouldn’t have thought twice about spending that much on the Cubs, but when the recession hit, and the terms the Tribune was looking for came to light, he would not have went that high.

          • YourResidentJag

            So, why wasn’t he allowed to make much of an offer? I think in that answer lies some deeper questions.

            • Funn Dave

              Selig didn’t want a douchebag to own the Cubbies.

              • Brains

                sounds more like selig didn’t want a *winner to own the cubs, since they’re in his team’s division and have a lot more money. sabotaged by fingers and fate.

              • YourResidentJag

                Neither did Reinsdorf depending on who you read. And that being said I’m not sure Cuban would have done anything better over Ricketts without seeing it. The problem is I’ll never know.

            • jj

              If I recall correctly, at the time, Cuban cited his unwillingness to take on the debt that the Tribune required of any proposal. So, he was never going to make an offer that matched the required terms.

              • YourResidentJag

                Then, he’s sending mixed messages because that’s not what he indicated on ESPN more recently. Now, maybe he doesn’t have to be up front with that information but if he chooses not to be, I guess that would be a good enough reason for me not to want him as an owner.

      • Hebner The Gravedigger

        I can think of multiple reasons the team would have been purchased at a discount. The purchase was from an entity that filed bankruptcy and, I assume, needed the cash. The potential pool of purchasers was very limited due to financial resources and required baseball approvals. The transaction required the use of high leverage, which may have scared off some bidders. The players on the books had relatvely large contracts compared to production. The facilities were (are) lacking and required large commitments to improve.

      • Ken

        The team sold four years ago, not yesterday. Values increase. When the Dodgers sold that immediately increased the Cubs value too

        • hansman

          Oh, gee-golly-willikers, I never thought of that! Or maybe I was using the sale price then and the valuation method of MLB teams then. Also, I may have tried to figure out where and additional $150M in revenues has come from in the last 3 years.

          The only thing that really makes sense to me is that the Cubs only sold for 2.5-2.75 times revenue, which based on what I have seen in the past couple of days, would have been an incredible steal.

  • Andrew

    yet whenever anyone mentions buying a free agent, everybody is worried about handcuffing the future. The Cubs should not be building their team the same way the rest of our division is. they can pay big dollars on good players. Hopefully this is the way they do it. What has hurt the team in the past isn’t the big contracts, but rather the lack of good development and drafting.

  • Jono

    signing expensive free agents isn’t the problem. It’s knowing where the holes will be after prospects start coming up. The front office has said that they’ll be willing to spend money in free agency when they know where these holes will be. They want a core of young players with complimentary free agents, not the other way around.

    • Jeff

      I think that’s a load of crap. Good players are good players, go get them. Screw the “when they know where the holes will be” we already know where the holes are!!! Fill them.

      We need a center fielder that can lead off, Ellsbury.
      We need a second baseman that can hit??
      We need a left fielder that bats right handed and isn’t 38? i.e. (Soriano)
      We need another starter or two and somebody to close games.

      The ideology of “a core of young players with complimentary free agents is the biggest load of bullshit!!!”

      Is Boston or St. Louis built that way??? Hell no, go get good players if you haven’t drafted them or don’t have any ready in the pipeline in that position

      • Blackhawks1963

        Completely and totally disagree. The foundation to sustained winning is a strong and consistenly productive farm system. It’s how success is built for the Red Sox, Cardinals, Rangers and even the Yankees of recent vintage.

        Free agency needs to be the COMPLEMENTARY strategy to a farm system that is great. Not the addiction that it was under Genius Jim Hendry.

        The Cardinals? Carlos Beltran was a complementary free agent addition to a great emerging core. The Cardinals also have used home grown assets to trade for things like Matt Holliday and John Axford.

        • Funn Dave

          He never said that free agents shouldn’t be complementary to the farm. Just that you can’t ignore valuable free agents if they’re out there just because the farm isn’t where you want it yet.

          • Voice of Reason

            Choo and Ellsbury are some of the top free agents this year. There will be others just like them when we’re ready to compete and need to fill holes.

            Or, we can trade for Choo and/or Ellsbury to fill a hole when we’re ready to win a World Series.

      • Jono

        Yes, boston and the cards were built that way. And how do we know that they wont be looking for a center fielder after the WS is over? They signed a decently expensive starting pitcher last year, right?

    • Randy

      That may change with empty seats. You still don’t know where the holes will be when the kids come up because some aren’t going to make it at the big league level. My hope is IF they see a value in a high priced FA that wont be there the following year that they pick that piece up now.

    • Kyle

      The “We have to wait until we know where the holes will be” theory is just completely batpoop.

      They’re baseball players. Most of them can be shifted around to multiple positions and all of them can be traded. We’re not going to sign Ellsbury and then let Almora rot in AAA for three years because they both play CF.

      • Jono

        Its thea waIm just relaying what Epstein has said. And it’s the way the cards and red sox were built. Seems to work. Also, they di add pieces, anyways. They’re not avoiding free agents. They’re just avoiding the really long and expensive contracts

        • Jono

          Wow, the amount of typing errors in that comment is just ridiculous

        • Jono

          All they’re avoiding are expensive and long contracts. They don’t want to make that kind of commitment until they know which free agents they need. I understand that you can’t just flip a switch, and that it takes years to build. That’s why they signed Jackson last year after offering even more money to Sanchez. That’s why it would be a good idea to sign a Choo or Ellsbury to mind CF until Almora comes up. But maybe those players want more years than the cubs need, or their prices are bidder up too high like Sanchez.

          • Cubbie Blues

            Choo belongs nowhere near CF.

          • YourResidentJag

            I don’t want Choo or Ellsbury and I don’t think either do Theo or Jed.

            • Jono

              Believe me, I would not mind if they didn’t sign them, especially since they’ll probably get more than 3the years

          • Funn Dave

            You keep saying this, and it’s so backwards. When you’re in this stage of a rebuild, you WANT long contracts. That way you can get free agents now while they’re available, and retain them a couple years from now, when you’re competitive. Otherwise, you lose your top players right when the rebuild’s getting done.

            • Voice of Reason

              Funndave,

              You most certainly, 120%, never, never, never want to be straddled with LONG TERM contracts when you’re rebuilding.

              Where did you ever hear such a thing?

              • Funn Dave

                Common sense tells me such a thing.

            • Jono

              but those contracts are normally for players who will be declining for most of their contract. So you’re paying huge money for an old player who is not that productive. Not smart. It’s worth it when that guy is the thing to put you over the top and into championship contention. That’s when the risk is worth it. It’s about risk / reward.

              • Funn Dave

                For older players, that’s definitely the case. But if you get a chance to get a valuable player in his 20’s, you’ve gotta snatch him up while you can. IMO.

                • Jono

                  The game is evolving. Teams are extending those productive players in their 20s, ie, Castro and Rizzo.

                  Specifically which productive player in his 20s have the Cubs passed on? They tried signing Sanchez, but the tigers paid too much for him. So they got Jackson. Sounds like what you’re suggesting, right?

                  • Kyle

                    “too much”

                    • Jono

                      Yes, the tigers offered Sanchez too much for the Cubs to beat. The important point is that they made a legit attempt to sign an impact free agent with a large contract.

                    • Jono

                      then they went and got the next best guy. That’s exactly what people are suggesting the should do

                  • Funn Dave

                    They should pursue Tanaka. I realize teams are extending their players more often to keep them from free agency, but that isn’t always the case. The Cubs need to keep an eye out for players that do reach FA, and then pursue them if they’re valuable.

                    • Voice of Reason

                      Tanaka projects to make about $10 million dollars a year. That’s not bad. He projects to be a #3 or #4 so he could be a bargain?

                      We seem to have quite a few #3 or #4 starters, though!
                      Shark, Jackson and Wood! Might as well throw Tanaka in there!

                      Hell signing Tanaka would actually make Shark expendable. I wouldn’t give Shark an extension of we got Tanaka… and Shark would give us some valuable young talent in return!

                    • SH

                      But he will block CJ Edwards.

            • Eternal pessemist

              You don’t blow a huge chunk of the “real” budget on Choo or Ellsbury. IF the budget is 110 million you sure won’t get a number one pitcher with the leftover cash after spending on those guys and may just have to pray they don’t falter or completey fall off the tracks so you can eventually trade them away for less than you paid (after all they would have come here for more than anyone else was willing to pay at the time)

        • Kyle

          It’s not the way those teams were built, and it’s not what Epstein has said.

          I’m sure there are valid reasons for not signing the toppiest of the top free agents. But “waiting to see where the holes are” isn’t one of them.

          • Jono

            it’s exactly the way they’re built. The free agents they got were complimentary to the young core guys they already had

          • Voice of Reason

            Kyle,

            That most certainly is the way those teams were built. Without question.

          • Eternal pessemist

            I agree with you to the extent some of the pieces are very moveable and won’t NEED to be traded.

      • Cubbie Blues

        Nope, Ellsbury would be on the bench because his strongest asset, his speed, is gone.

        • YourResidentJag

          That’s why they should talk contract with Granderson because his LH power isn’t.

        • Patrick W.

          Well, he did steal 52 bases this season, most in baseball.

          • Cubbie Blues

            That’s why I said it was his biggest asset. It not only serves him on the bases, but also in the field. When his speed goes, his worth is also gone.

            • Patrick W.

              Sorry, I read that as you saying his speed is *currently* gone.

              • Cubbie Blues

                Oh, no, not at all. I can see how it could be read like that though. Chances are though, it will decline in the next couple of years and when it does, it will be a sharp decline.

          • YourResidentJag

            Yep. The infamous Carl Crawford factor rears its ugly head. Think yrs of contract, there, Patrick.

            • Patrick W.

              Oh yeah, I get it now… I just missed that CB was responding to the notion that we could sign Ellsbury to hold down Center Field until Almora is ready. I don’t disagree that by the time Almora is ready Ellsbury will have lost some or most of his best asset, his speed.

              I thought CB was was saying we shouldn’t sign Ellsbury now because his speed is gone. It ain’t gone yet, but in 4 years it very probably will be.

              • YourResidentJag

                For the record, I really like to have Ellsbury. He’s just not signing a 3 yr deal with us.

                • Patrick W.

                  We agree.

      • Norm

        Completely agree,
        The only question should be is if Player X is worth Y years at Z dollars.

        Ellsbury will get more than Pence just got, so no thanks.

      • Voice of Reason

        Kyle typed:

        “We’re not going to sign Ellsbury and then let Almora rot in AAA for three years because they both play CF.”

        You’re exactly right! They will not sign Ellsbury.

        If we were a lead off hitter away from winning it all then I would say sign Ellsbury. But, we’re not!

        We can sign Choo and Ellsbury and then we’d be a .500 ball club. Big deal. That and 49 cents will get you an ice cream cone at McDonald’s.

        • On The Farm

          If signing Choo and Ellsbury can get this club to a .500 team I don’t see why the Cubs wouldn’t do it. There are so many variables: Rizzo and Castro taking steps forward, maybe a bullpen emerges, starting rotation stays healthy and performs above league average. Couple that with a few teams running into injuries or some teams forgetting how to win (I am referring to the 2012 to 2013 Nationals) and you just never know if maybe with your .500 record, a couple lucky breaks your way and you go from 82 to high 80s low 90s in wins. Once you get to the playoffs it doesn’t matter because it just takes a couple hitters to get hot.

          What I am trying to say is we are more than a Choo and Ellsbury away from a playoff team right now. But, what if Bryant and Baez emerge next year setting us up to have a good 2015 team. Maybe then having a guy like Ellsbury or Choo signed this offseason will end up making us a .500 team in 2015 to a playoff team because we don’t have to go trade for Ellsbury/Choo. I think the FO should look into signing one of these two as long as the bidding doesn’t take off. It will be hard telling what the market will be like since they will have draft pick compensation tied to them, maybe it will keep their contract price down enough that the Cubs can stay in the auction.

          • Voice of Reason

            On The Farm,

            There are way too many “if’s” in your argument!

            I have a better chance of winning the lottery tonight than for all that stuff to come together.

            Forget it. There is a plan and it does not include signing Choo and Ellsbury! It involves another year of Schierholtz and other mediocre free agent stop gaps to wait until the kids are ready to come up or to integrate the kids into the starting line up next year!

            • On The Farm

              No, if signing two players would get us to .500 the FO would do it no question because lots of things could happen that could turn us into a playoff team. Couple breaks go your way (like a team that was lucky enough to face the 2013 Chicago Cub bullpen) and all of the sudden you win even more games then you were supposed to. I know signing Choo and Ellsbury won’t make us a .500 club, but if in your hypothetical post they would, no question we would sign them and take our chances.

              At some point you are going to have a team that falls in the middle of completely tanking for a pick, or competing for a playoff spot. If the plan is to build to the middle ground and build from there, and all you have to do is sign two guys, no question this FO would do it. There is no world were you are either a playoff team or your team is so bad or is so good you are a playoff team. Its not an or situation, there are teams in the middle the sooner we get there the better.

              • http://deepcenterfield.blogspot.com Jason Powers

                ^^This. Exactly.

                As I stated back in August, ” The Cubs and the LA Dodgers both had the exact record as of JUNE 2 (23-32)” http://www.baseball-reference.com/games/standings.cgi?date=2013-06-02

                So, what the F happened? LA had injuries galore, a manager ready for dismissal, and seemingly a very bad model – all old players – the wheels coming off the truck.

                But the Cubs didn’t bring up any difference making talent (Puig in LA registers a 5.0 WAR at only 22: http://www.baseball-reference.com/players/p/puigya01.shtml)
                and instead, went into sell off mode.

                We had a good pitching staff – Feldman and Garza and Samardzija all were performing, Wood above that – but couldn’t solve the BP. No plan for that falling apart. No bats either.

                But we don’t want to rush anyone to the bigs. Arbitration clocks. We aren’t good. No talent. Play for the protected pick.

                Good rationalizations…excuses if you played ever competitively.

                LA wins their division with 92 wins. The Cubs go to the playoffs instead of Cincinnati with 91 wins…

                And while LA didn’t win the NL, they were there to face those Cardinals. At least their fans had something to root for in July-October, other than where to pick in the 2014 draft. Or watch as others sign Cuban players that play 2B, at a reasonable rate.

                • X The Cubs Fan

                  The Dodgers also have a rotation of Greinke-Kershaw-Ryu-Capuno-Beckett before trading for Nolasco and let’s not even mention the lineup comparisons.

                  • X The Cubs Fan

                    The Dodgers have good players but all but Kershaw & Puig are expensive and aging and it’s not like they have a farm system to replace them with. The dodgers best prospect (Pederson) would be outside the big 4 or 5 (Baez, Bryant, Almora, Soler & maybe Edwards).

                    • http://deepcenterfield.blogspot.com Jason Powers

                      Kershaw is 25 (26 next March). If he’s old, it’s because he was REALLY good, REALLY early.

                      Puig is CHEAP for what he’s already done.
                      1 WAR=4.5M. 5.0 WAR in 2013 equals 22.5.
                      His contract is only 42M over 6 years???

                      Its Kemp, Crawford, and Ethier that are expensive en masse.

                      Pederson is statistically better than all (but Baez)of the BIG 4: http://www.baseball-reference.com/minors/leader.cgi?type=bat&id=83863286

                      Pederson finished the SOUTHERN league 7th in OBP; 8th in SLG and 2nd in SB.

                      Baez – strikeouts too much. More power than Pederson, but less patience than JOC.

                      Almora – you gotta play at AA before you can presume he’s close to better.

                      Soler – again, when has he played?

                      Bryant – NUMBERS at AA!

                      Edwards, I’d give you, for now. But he may only be a closer – not worth an everyday player….

                      SP Zach Lee – http://www.baseball-reference.com/minors/player.cgi?id=lee—001zac is another prospect they have worth mentioning.

                      AND the Dodgers have developed better talent than the Cubs…even with their chaotic last decade of ownership woes.

                      Kemp, Kershaw, Billingsley, AJ Ellis, James Loney, Broxton, Russell Martin, Edwin Jackson all since 2001.

                      Who’s better that the Cubs have drafted and developed? Castro, or Barney? Samardzija?

                  • http://deepcenterfield.blogspot.com Jason Powers

                    So they underachieved for 1/3 of the season.
                    1) Beckett didn’t throw f-ing pitch after May 13th.
                    2) Capuno – really? that guy was a meatball 5th starter.
                    3) Nolasco wasn’t acquired until July, and hardly, the difference maker. He went 5 innings most of his starts. Twice 8 innings; got rocked several times. But the Dodgers went run scoring happy.

                    Didn’t the 2013 Cubs underachieve?
                    And we had fireballers Samardzija, Jackson, and Garza.

                    Their lineup was a mishmash of Schumaker, Puig, Punto, Jerry Hairston, and AJ Ellis with Gonzo struggling in June…

                    Hanley Ramirez, once he got back, made the difference.
                    http://www.baseball-reference.com/teams/LAD/2013.shtml#team_batting::none

                    They fixed their BP. And upgraded slightly from Capuno to Nolasco. Ryu pitched better than expected. Amazing what happens when you spend a bit of cash on international free agents….

                    I WATCHED plenty of Dodger games – instead of the Cubs – because of Puig and his story.

                    Much more interesting to watch them. At least they had conflict, an emerging story, instead of the same old woe-is-us Cubs.

                    (I am taking the opposite of the argument today – tired of mollycoddling the Cubs masses sold on the plan to never acquire pricier talent.)

                    Especially since we had the 4th largest revenue streams….and a payroll sell off to match Tampa’s.

              • Funn Dave

                And even if that didn’t turn us to a playoff team, it would give the Cubs a helluva lot better foundation for the MLB team to build on once the farm players start graduating.

                • http://deepcenterfield.blogspot.com Jason Powers

                  ^^Very true.

                  Still can flip assets in the off season.

                  A question: Once teams know you are sellers, perennially, do they offer the best deals?

                  Did you land a date with a hot chick while being seen as a desperate for a date slug/loser?

            • http://deepcenterfield.blogspot.com Jason Powers

              How did we win the NL East in 1984?

              The ifs:
              1) Sandberg hits for power, average, played well above his projected ability as it stood at the end of 1983. No one was expecting him to be .500 plus slugger – and he did that again, only once in his career, 1990.
              2) Rick Sutcliffe pitched out of his mind – recording a 16-1 record; highest K rate he ever recorded, this after being in Cleveland and recording a negative WAR while there!!!
              3) Bob Dernier – never had a better full season than 1984
              4) Jody Davis – power, handled a pitching staff well, held up under 145 starts.
              5) Gary Matthews – career high .410 OBP at 33 years old
              6) Steve Trout – career year.

              And I could likely find other career bests and the like.
              Don’t argue or quibble over ifs and buts when such IFS and BUTS have happen more times in Baseball history than I can put into this post.

              The POINT: We can project things and do analysis and acquire scrap heap guys at 26-28 years old that are likely to athletically peak, BUT we just don’t F-ing know what can happen when you DO something to better a team.

              STASIS and WAITING is for LOSERS!
              Why the Cubs are so good at losing….waiting on the come.

              The Cardinals didn’t just have a magic formula and bring up all those minor players and WIN. They got a bit of luck to go with their talents. And signed players – TOOK ACTION!

              1) Matt Carpenter – 55 Doubles, 199 hits was that completely projectable for 2013, right??? (Show me that f-ing publication or link to it.)

              2) Matt Holliday – 33; Beltran- 36 Molina – 30 (and a catcher) all batting over 500+ times. Seems their vets do wonders there. They signed Holliday and Beltran as Free Agents. Molina will get 15M in 2014….at 31.

              So why can’t the Cubs be in the market for Ellsbury??? Or Choo? Or McCann? (Oh, they are all too old….Holliday and Beltran were 30 plus..seems the Cards got a magic formula.)

              3) Matt Adams, Vogelbach’s slightly taller clone, fills in nicely for Allen Craig.

              Does the phrase, “man plans, GOD laughs” mean anything to you?

              The Cubs – GOD – have not a positive thought in their minds. Can’t take a chance; never see the forest for the f-ing trees.
              And seem to think all the waiting and wanting is cured by hoping.
              DO SOMETHING! TAKE AN ACTION!

              The 1984 Cubs were built by ACTION taken by Dallas Green.

              That’s my rant. Flames begin.

              • Voice of Reason

                I’m all out of matches and lighter fluid.

                • http://deepcenterfield.blogspot.com Jason Powers

                  I guess the Cubs will be able to afford to buy flammable items as a winning strategy for 2014.

                  • SH

                    “I guess the Cubs will be able to afford to buy flammable items as a losing strategy for 2014.”

                    FTFY

                    • http://deepcenterfield.blogspot.com Jason Powers

                      Yeah!!!

        • BWA

          Also, we can move Choo or Ellsbury to Left. Would give us a might good defensive outfield if it is ellsbury.

          • Voice of Reason

            Wouldn’t one of them already have to be in left or would they both play center field at the same time?

            • BWA

              we wouldn’t actually get both

    • Voice of Reason

      Jeff,

      Boston and St. Louis do go get those players.

      You have to be patient for a couple of more years and then the Cubs will be in that position. Trading prospects to fill holes. Signing free agents where they have holes. That’s all part of a rolling stone.

      The Cubs have to wait for their rolling stone to start rolling. That will happen once our young players are up and playing in the bigs. Then, we’ll start wheeling and dealing prospects and signing free agents to big bucks.

      • Jeff

        I’ve been patient for 40 years, I heard that same crap 6 years ago….

        Just be patient for a couple of more years and then the Cubs will be in that position.

        Enough is enough!!! No more!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

        No other organization that is successful says, “Well, lets just sit on our hands and wait for the young guys to make it.

        That’s a recipe for disaster and apathy.

        You are constantly building and adding, look at the two teams in the World Series, Boston and St Louis bring young guys like Wacha and Bogaerts along when they are ready but they go about building a winning team, they don’t sit around and wait on their minors to all come to fruition until they add free agents.

        I’ve never seen so much passive aggressive, this slow development of the team is okay, the lousy manager is okay, the FO is just being prudent, the owner is doing all he can crap on this site.

        As a fan for over 30 years it’s getting really old, maybe some you are younger and this is all you know, the Loveable losers…right???

        Sometimes you have to make drastic steps to snap the droughts. I don’t see Ricketts stepping up like John Henry in Boston to bring a winner to the city of Chicago.

        I just don’t see it, Ricketts is about profits, team be damned.

        • Jono

          They are following the cards/red sox model. They will add impact free agents. The rebuild wont last forever

        • Voice of Reason

          Funny you mention Boston, the Red Sox are a perfect example!

          The Red Sox were patient and let their minor league develop. They’ve since added free agents where they had holes. Theo made great draft picks in Boston.

          You’re Boston reference is a perfect example of why we need to let the kids develop and then fill holes where they’re needed. And, now we have Theo making picks for us!

          • http://deepcenterfield.blogspot.com Jason Powers

            The 2004 Bo Sox were not exclusively “built” by Theo.
            Let’s see:
            1) Manny Ramirez, arguably the best hitter in AL at the time
            2) Johnny Damon
            3) Jason Varitek – one of top 5 catcher in all the MLB
            4) Pedro Martinez – arguably one of the best pitchers in MLB; certainly mediocre.
            5) Derek Lowe
            6) Tim Wakefield
            7) Nomar Garciaparra – ALL Star, top 10 MVP in 2003, soon a trade piece.

            So Theo took over a healthy lineup of stars; made good trades; and was good at finding talent in the draft, later. What a GM is suppose to do.

            Somehow, a bit of luck happen in landing on a team with AMPLE resources, an absolute WIN NOW! model, and players wanting it too.

            We should put context on the successes of our current GM. He knew a good place to work when he saw it.

            The Cubs haven’t quite been as quickly turned around, now, have they? (We didn’t have 3-4 ALL STAR/HOF players in our lineups…)

        • Jono

          theo’s only been the president for 2 years

        • Patrick W.

          If I were 30 years old, in my lifetime the Cubs have been in the playoffs in 1984, 1989, 1998, 2003, 2007, 2008. That’s also true for me, the 45 year old, and my mother in law, the 67 year old.

          • Steve

            Been a Cubs fan for sixty years. Team has had only 17 winning seasons in all those years. 28% isn’t too good.

        • Cubbie Blues

          So which is it, 30 or 40? Also, does the fact that you’re older than me (probably not by much) make you a better fan some how?

          • Patrick W.

            Exactly. The younger you are, the more winning you’ve seen the Cubs do.

          • Jeff

            Why do you imply that I imply that I’m a better fan than you???

            You do need to learn to read better but I never implied that I’m a better fan.

            What I DID SAY………is that as a fan and next year will be 40 years. I’m tired of hearing the same old rhetoric, wait til next year.

            Enough is enough. I want an ownership like Boston, L.A. can’t believe I’m saying this, George Steinbrenner, who are 100% committed to doing whatever it takes to get a winner.

            Our current owner is only 50% committed, I’m not buying in….at all.

            Five years from now, we will be a .500 team, the arguments will still be the same, yet Ricketts will still run millions of dollars through his coffers.

            The fans need to stop buying to send a message that apathy and mediocrity are not accepted.

            Unfortunately, the loveable losers is so firmly ingrained into the Cubs psyche that I don’t see that happening.

            • Patrick W.

              Your post implied that because you are older, you have a better frame of reference to draw upon to fuel your frustration, and that the better fans would be more frustrated. You suggested that the Loveable Losers tag would be more accepted by a younger fan.

              I disagree that a younger fan would be more used to losing. Only an 85 year old has seen a higher percentage of wins than a 30 year old.

              Here is the winning pct. in your lifetime based on age:

              1 0.407
              5 0.440
              10 0.477
              15 0.472
              20 0.474
              25 0.480
              30 0.482
              35 0.475
              40 0.474
              45 0.479
              50 0.478
              55 0.474
              60 0.470
              65 0.466
              70 0.469
              75 0.469
              80 0.477
              85 0.483
              90 0.485
              95 0.486

              • Jeff

                The fact that I’m older only means I’ve seen too many years of losing and I’m tired of it!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

                I’ve been listening to the same old arguments by Cubs fans for years. I remember back in 95-96 when netscape navigator allowed web sites with blogs hit the internet, the argument was the same back then.

                I’m confused by your stats you keep posting, winning seasons, losing seasons????????

                It’s 100 years + and still no World Series Championship, how many times has St. Louis been in the World Series in the last 10 years, way to many!!

                Like I said, enough is enough

                • Patrick W.

                  I can see by your eight question marks that you are very confused by my point. Let me try to clear that up:

                  You said: “…maybe some you are younger and this is all you know, the Loveable losers…right???”

                  I read that to believe that if you are younger, all you know is that the Cubs are Loveable losers.

                  My point is, if you are younger, you probably don’t think of the Cubs as Loveable Losers, and my reasoning behind that is that the age where a person has seen the very most winning by Cubs teams is 30. So you are less likely to think of the Cubs as Loveable Losers, and more likely to think of a team that has been to the playoffs every 5 years or so.

                  • DarthHater

                    “I can see by your eight question marks that you are very confused by my point. ”

                    I could tell you what his 14 exclamation points represent, but your app would block it. :-D

                  • Jeff

                    I think loveable losers and accepting a mediocre team with an ownership not truly committed to doing everything it takes is an unfortunate belief held whether consciously or unconsciously by all Cubs fans regardless of what age they are.

                    • Cubbie Blues

                      So, this is something you believe as well then? Or, are you not a Cubs fan? I must not be a Cubs fan because I don’t think that.

                • cms0101

                  It seems to me you have 2 options. Become a Cardinals fan or hope for the best with the team you are a fan of. If you’re a Cubs fan, it goes without saying you are long suffering, regardless of how old you are. In 2003 we all woke up from our lovable loser slumber and our expectations were significantly increased. 2008-2009, our expectations were still just as raised, only to be stomped on again. By 2010, the team that was built starting in 2003 was starting to get old. Hendry threw good money after bad, until he didn’t have any left to spend. He traded the best prospects in an already bad system to acquire Matt Garza. There is no amount of money that Theo and company could have spent the last two season that would have taken this team to the World Series. People may choose to debate that point, but that’s not my main focus here. Do I like everything this front office has done? No. Do I want to wait any more for a winning season? No. But if I were in charge, I can’t see a clear path to improving this team enough to get to the World Series quickly. But what I do see is a pool of talent collecting in the minors that may produce 1-2 guys for the starting lineup very soon, and an additional stockpile of talent that will allow for trades to acquire better talent as the team starts to shape. That’s all I can ask for out of a front office that has been on the job for 2 seasons. I hate the losing culture. I’m not buying into it. I’m glad they fired Sveum. They didn’t get that one right and they’re correcting it. Approaching .500, getting 1-2 guys into the majors from the minors, that’s what I need to see in 2014. I won’t go to games while there this bad unless there is talent on the field. That’s the strongest statement we as Cubs fans can make. And that should be the only motivation the front office and ownership needs to get this thing turned around. Outside of that, what do you expect can be done? You’re preaching to the choir with your frustration on the losing. But if you see a realistic, better path, I’m all ears.

                  • Jeff

                    Very well said!!! Nice post

                    • On The Farm

                      Unless I am wrong Jeff this post was directed at you? It looks to me like cms0101 is saying I am tired of winning, but unless you have a better of idea how to do it I am all ears. To which you followed his post up with well said.

                      So I am confused do you like how our ownership and FO is handling the rebuild or do you still wish we had someone like L.A. or Boston, or dare you say it Steinbrenner, who are 100% committed to winning whatever it takes. Unlike our ownership?

                    • On The Farm

                      * “I am tired of winning” should be tired of losing

                    • Jeff

                      I’m not totally frustrated with the FO, but how much is the rebuild hampered by the owners dictated budget.

                      There have been some major mis-steps by the F.O., Ian Stewart, Dale Sveum, Scott Baker. Who guarantees 5.5M to a guy who only pitches in 3 games, that should have been a low base, incentive laiden contract.

                      They aren’t the worst FO, but they have made plenty of mistakes for being the wonder twins.

                      I’ts kind of hard to go wrong when your picking in the top 10 spots in the draft. The key to how well they draft is the number of second, third and fourth rounders that make it.

                      The future pitching is still awful thin, we picked up some arms this summer but we didn’t get anyone’s premium arms.

                      If they made a trade for a Jacob Turner like Miami did or get a Tyler Skaggs like Arizona did, I’d be more optimistic in the future.

                      I still think pitching is the key and while I understand our offense is anemic, I think it’s easier to buy short term hitting like Boston did this offseason to fill holes than it is to acquire the pitching needed to win a championship.

                      Our current pitching might be decent enough to be .500 and win enough games to get us to 80+ wins but can you really say their is one dominant pitcher on our staff that comes anywhere close to being Elite???

                      Shark is the closest in terms of pure stuff, but even he can’t put it together over a full season and he’s one of my favorites on the team, same name and all.

                    • cms0101

                      At the end of the day, we can complain all we want. Here’s what’s going to happen. They’re not going to sign guys like Choo or Ellsbury. They may spend some money here or there in free agency, but no big name signings will happen. They’ll get to the deadline and start flipping veterans if they’re not in contention. One or two of the top minor leaguers will come up in July or August to play every day. By the end of the season we’ll have a better feel for where the team is, and hopefully a better outlook for the near future.

                    • Jeff

                      Unfortunate your right on that account, so good luck seeing me in Wrigley anytime soon. Not willing to pay my hard earned on that load of crap, others can.

                      I might make some trips to Daytona or Seiverville where actual decent baseball is played and fleecing is not the norm.

                      Good chat today guys, everyone was civil, even if we didn’t agree! :)-

                      Go Cubs!!!

                    • On The Farm

                      If their biggest failures are trying out a 3B in a year when we had no internal 3B options, hiring a first time manager when we clearly didn’t have a competing team, and signing Scott Baker for $5M I would say they are doing okay if that’s their only misses. Considering we missed on Sanchez and got Jackson, bringing in Feldman, Villanueva, and Baker on small deals is fine by me. Baker was the definition of a loto ticket. An incentive laden contract wouldn’t have landed him.

                      Stewart what can you do, but give it a shot when you have nothing else in the cupboard and Youk was the best (and more expensive) FA option. Same with Dale, he could have been a huge success and we were in a position to absorb a failure.

                      I disagree with its hard to miss at the top of the draft. Plenty of teams find ways to do it all the time. It looks like they correctly picked Bryant over Gray (for the time being) because scouts think Bryant could already be a top ten prospect, where as Gray isn’t that highly thought of. I don’t know a ton about Gray, but so far he has a FB and one off speed, not exactly an TOR arm yet. Bryant could be a MLB player, by the end of next summer.

                      I would say our scouting department is a definite strength, if you need examples I will provide two off the top of my head. CJ Edwards was a pretty good find in the Garza deal, a relative unknown prior to the trade. Or look at the Hariston trade with Washington. For what Scott Hariston provides getting someone that was considered the Nationals 20ish prospect was a steal.

                      As for future pitching in the last two seasons they added Johnson (mid rotation arm), Edwards (mid rotation arm, maybe even higher), Pineyro (back of rotation to bullpen), Black (high upside bullpen arm), Strop (dominate RP a year ago), Arrieta (MLB ready pitcher with good stuff just needs command work). I am not sure how much more pitching you can add in two years.

                      Sure we didn’t land a Skaggs or Corbin or Turner. But did we really trade anyone of that value that those prospects cost? Texas was about the only partner willing to meet our demands so we went with the best quality we could get and I think they did pretty darn good on that trade.

                      What am I trying to say with all of this. We do need to be a little more patient. We need to see if the Cubs will actually be in the bidding for a big FA this offseason, or if they actually mean they don’t have money to spend. Maybe its all a decoy to keep other teams off balance once the offseason comes (a la the mystery team route). I know you are impatient, but in today’s game with Free agents hitting the markets in their 30s their aren’t a ton of the ‘big contract’ guys that are worth it, and you have to gamble and pick and choose. Nobody wants Albert Pujols Angels production.

                  • Norm

                    Who is “elite” in Boston’s rotation?
                    How many elite arms did LAD and DET have and what did that do for them?

                    PITCHING doesn’t win. TEAMS win.

                    Bitch all you want about the Scott Baker’s of the moves, but they can’t ALL be great moves. How does the Feldman sign and dump look? How does the Scott Hairston sign and dump look? The Soriano trade? The Dempster trade? The Garza trade?

                    But oh no, they f’d up with Scott Baker and Ian Stewart.
                    Why oh why can’t they be perfect??!!?

                    • Norm

                      And Jacob Turner is your example? I’ll take CJ Edwards.

                • Stinky Pete

                  I think you can stomp your feet and yell, “I’m mad as hell and I’m not going to take it anymore!!” and you would have just as much chance as changing a plot line on General Hospital.

                  • DarthHater

                    [img]http://gifoftheday.files.wordpress.com/2012/06/networki39mmadashell_segment_01-cine.gif[/img]

            • Cubbie Blues

              This come to mind when you implied you are a better fan:

              “I’ve never seen so much passive aggressive, this slow development of the team is okay, the lousy manager is okay, the FO is just being prudent, the owner is doing all he can crap on this site.
              As a fan for over 30 years it’s getting really old, maybe some you are younger and this is all you know, the Loveable losers…right???”

            • Voice of Reason

              Jeff,

              The Cubs tried to buy a World Series a couple of years ago and it didn’t work!

              Different businesses all have different ways to become successful. The successful baseball teams, that are sustained, start with a minor league system that is successful.

              At the same time, I understand your point of appealing to the fans. IF the Cubbies don’t start turning this around in a couple of years then they will have to sign a big name free agent just to appease the fans and move the turnstiles.

              I’m a Cub fan, but I’m a realistic Cub fan. The reason they haven’t won in over a 100 years is because they haven’t had good enough teams. The Ricketts are trying to change the losing culture that has been in place for over a hundred years. They are doing that right now, though you probably won’t agree.

              You’re just going to have to give them time and be patient. We’ve waited this long. THIS TIME, we’re heading in the right direction! This is the blue print for the Red Sox, the Rays AND the Yankees! The Yanks had a great run because of home grown talent and then filling in with free agents and trades.

              • Jeff

                While I agree with you on most of arguments, I believe now is the time to be buying.

                Take a look at Cots Baseball contracts. Currently the team has $50M committed to Salary for 2014. We have very few arbitration eligible players that will dramatically increase that number, maybe 5 to 10M total.

                That puts us at 60M if no free agent is added. My question is where is the 46M differential from last years salaries going???????????

                After this next year, Soriano’s contract comes off the books. We are going young so these players coming up in the system are cheap and rent controlled for many years to come. Rizzo’s and Castro’s salaries are minimal compared to other winning teams. Jackson’s is the most expensive.

                Where is the money going????? Theo says at the end of the season that spending at the big league level will be limited.

                How?????????? where is that 46 Million going???????

                You cannot note those facts and say that this owner is 100% committed to fielding a winning ball club.

                • Voice of Reason

                  Jeff,

                  Here’s where I’ll disagree that the owners are not 100% committed to fielding a winning ball club.

                  The Ricketts have dumped a bunch of money into developing minor league talent. From upgrading facilities to spending more than they’re allotted for off shore talent.

                  Why have they committed all this to the minor league system? Because they know that is where winning championships starts!

                  They extended Rizzo and Castro with visions for the future and team control, etc.

                  The Cubs are taking all the right steps in developing a winner.

                  They will have the financial resources to pull the trigger on some big name free agents when the time comes just as the Red Sox and Yankees have done. Where they’ll be different than the Rays is that the Cubs will have money to keep their young talent around instead of having to constantly trade them away.

            • DarthHater

              I’ve been a Cubs fan for over 45 years and I’m as sick of losing as the next guy. But the fact that I am tired of losing does not constitute a factual basis for making silly assertions like:”Five years from now, we will be a .500 team, the arguments will still be the same, yet Ricketts will still run millions of dollars through his coffers.” That may or may not turn out to be true, but unless you are psychic, it’s just a tantrum posing as a fact.

              • Jeff

                The young guys from the farm are not enough to win a world series, plus it will take them several years to develop into elite players that could win a championship.

                The Boston Red Sox’s average age is 30, our young guys were born in 92 so they are just 21. It will take them another 6 years to hit their peak, so yes, in five years we will probably be a .500 club, the next three we will be lucky to maintain a .400 level.

                • JB88

                  This seems to be assuming linear growth and no outside improvements. I’m not sure I agree with that. I’m also not certain that all of the “young guys” will make it or that certain of those “young guys” won’t be dealt for other parts.

                • Cubbie Blues

                  We’ll be lucky to only lose 97 games a year?

                  • Jeff

                    If we can’t add offense and the only way I see that happening next year is by spending on free agents. The young guys aren’t ready yet, yes, it will be another long summer with lots of losses.

                    • Voice of Reason

                      Oh yes, we will lose a lot of games next year!

                      But, there are brighter days on the horizon!! lol

                    • Cubbie Blues

                      Jeff, you didn’t just say next year, you said for the next three years. Even then, I really don’t see us being at that level again.

                  • Jeff

                    Hey, I’m an hour away from the Tennessee Smokies, I can go enjoy winning baseball!!

        • mjhurdle

          “I just don’t see it, Ricketts is about profits, team be damned.”

          a successful Chicago Cubs team will make Ricketts more profit than an unsuccessful one. So there is that…

        • ssckelley

          Jeff,

          I have also been a fan for over 40 years but I can honestly say this is the best the Cubs organization has looked since 2002, and I believe this farm system is better. Go back to that period of time for a minute. That 2002 class was extremely top heavy while this one looks like it will be more sustainable with a bunch of exciting low level prospects coming up. After 2002 prospects like Zambrano, Patterson, Choi, Prior graduated they completely fell on their faces in that years draft, having 4 number 1 picks and all of them flamed out. But the strength of those prospects got the Cubs within a few outs of a World Series along with quite a few winning seasons. Shortly after that the Tribune started having financial problems and then they stopped spending money on prospects and tried to buy a World Series team so that they could cash out. The farm system clunked, Tribune sold out, and Rickets bought a team full of aging veterans, a shitty farm system, with a stadium crumbling apart.

          Fast forward to today, we are back in that same situation again. We have a top farm system that all of baseball envies about to produce some damn good ballplayers, an owner and a FO dedicated to building the organization from the ground up (which I feel they have), along with a plan to modernize Wrigley and drive additional revenues to the team. Now is not the time to cash out on free agents, this FA class is horrible and the top FA players are all on the wrong side of 30. I see a FO that was not afraid to pull the trigger on a failed manager hire and attempted to lure a manager from the Yankees with an obscene amount of money (for a manager). This does not look like an ownership or FO that does not care about winning.

          Buying championships does not work and both the Red Sox and Cardinals playing in the World Series while the Dodgers sit at home, who tried to buy a World Series, is living proof of that. The old wait’ll next year line was a joke, the Cubs were lovable losers with a party in the bleachers packing Wrigley even when they sucked. It was a false hope that we all bought into and then got into a frenzy after they went out and signed some hot Candy Maldonado, Jose Guzman, Kevin Tapani, or OH HENRY type free agents. I refuse to buy into the sign-all-the-free-agents hype after I have seen the Ellsbury’s types turn into Lance Johnsons once they become Cubs. The smart Cub fans can finally see the light at the end of the tunnel, wait’ll next year is no longer a joke.

          I know you are just venting but keep the faith, this is not the time to jump off the band wagon.

      • SH

        I’ve yet to see a good explanation why not to sign those players now anyway, other than “blocking” which is just asinine. *Too much talent* is not a problem this team has.

        • Voice of Reason

          Signing Choo and Ellsbury make us a .500 team. What’s the difference between being .500 and losing 90 games?

          The difference is we won’t get as good of a draft pick if we’re .500!!

          Screw signing Choo and Ellsbury. We can trade for one or both of them in two or three years if we need them to fill a hole to win a World Series.

          • SH

            But we’re going to be a .500 team at some point. That point can be now — and then that .500 team is improved by adding minor leaguers — or that point can be in a few years — when a minor league team is then improved by adding FAs. So, for the same goal, you’d rather wait a few extra years?

            And to your second point — seriously? Tank to get good draft picks and then turn around and trade the minor league system we spent years building…for players we could have got for only money. I actually have no idea what anyone thinks the “plan” is anymore beyond “justify being a terrible team.”

            • Voice of Reason

              I was saying the only difference between finishing .500 and losing 90+ games is what draft position you get.

              Nobody cares if a team finishes .500 or losing 90+games. I want to win a World Series!

              And, that higher draft pick from losing 90+ games might put us over the top instead of finishing .500 and drafting in the middle.

              • On The Farm

                The only problem is the chances of you going from 90+ losses to WS contender aren’t that high. Another point to make is even when we start winning, we will want to be able to keep drafting players in the first round, so we should want to sign the big ticket FAs when we have protected picks, not once we start winning and start losing those picks

                • SH

                  ^Thanks for making these nice points for me. I’ll also posit that if you project for .500, you could deviate to a playoff-caliber team within reason. If you project for 90 losses, you aren’t likely to do so.

              • Brains

                The only problem is that this is entirely inconceivable and impossible as a winning strategy. Do you really think Cano would have got as good as he did without Jeter, etc, as models for him to aim, or without protection in the lineup? Or an expectation that they should and will win? We are a disaster area, and apparently it’s coming from the top down. Stop harping on 19 year olds guys, you’re being creeps. Let them develop and then think about them when they hit the MLB.

              • YourResidentJag

                But here’s the problem with that theory, when is a moderating factor going to occur with this team? In other words, if the strategy of Theo works to some effect, you would expect a certain percentage of the young players to be high WAR value players and possibly right out of the gates. With no added high WAR value players coming from outside the organization(because we justified why the Cubs should pass on most of them regardless the reason) depending on the percentage of internal high WAR value players, that accounts for a .500 record? And that .500 record turn around begins in 2015? So bye-bye high draft pick? I think that’s what he’s saying.

                • Kyle

                  The theory is that when you are about to reach that .500 point internally, you slam on the gas and push all the way into playoff contention through outside acquisitions.

                  The practice is, of course, a bit trickier, but that’s the idea.

  • Mikelach13

    Based on the Bloomberg graph, I would say the Mets are a media company, not a baseball team.

  • Blackhawks1963

    The lack of a mega-TV deal and the extreme limitations imposed by the antiquated Wrigley Field mean the Cubs are not in the financial league of the Yankees, Red Sox, Dodgers, Angels. Hence why the Wrigley renovation project, which continues to be held hostage by those rat bastard greedy rooftop owners and a corrupt City Hall, is so bloody important. Hence also why I really wish the Ricketts would abandon Wrigley and build a state-of-the-art ballpark in the northern or northwest suburbs. Lets face it…Wrigley is a crumbling dump with a 100 year history of losing and the Luvable Loser culture defining.

    • Scotti

      Arlington Heights is calling…

      • YourResidentJag

        Exactly.

      • Kevin

        Amen!

    • cavemencubbie

      Great post! With all due respect to the posters who believe the Ricketts are all about profit, I submit they are a victim of nostalgia. I at one time lived in close proximity to Wrigley. I moved away some 40 years ago and for all my nostalgia about the good old days, one cannot go back in time. I visited my old haunts a few years back and couldn’t stand it! The old decay and must be replaced with the new. That applies to this old fart as well. Hey Tom, it’s time to move forward!

      • Jeff

        Have you noticed that over the last three years, they have only made modest changes to the ball park and those changes are to signage and seating which translate to added revenues.

        No major money has been spent on real renovations and maybe never will given the current negotiations.

        I’m not crying for Ricketts, his money flow is just fine.

        • Cubbie Blues

          They have also redone several of the restrooms. They spent real money on Scouts, Coaches, new *Mega Computer*, DR …

  • Reality Check

    show me the money!

    the more we see about this team; the more Ricketts looks like a con man. really tired of hearing about “renovations are needed to spend money” bullshit when all we ever get is the opposite from trusted sources like Forbes or Bloomberg. face it, Ricketts is controlled by his Daddy; who does not like baseball or the Cubs and is really the re-incarnation of PK Wrigley.
    just wait till the renovations start, if they ever do, tickets, concessions are all going up.
    cubs made the most in baseball in 2012 according to Forbes at 32M. in 2014 they get an add;l 25M from national tv deals. yet, payroll is expected around 90M.

    this is not funny math; it’s liar math.

    gotta wonder what the city of mesa is thinking now after spending 99M to keep the cubs; yet ricketts has not spend 1 dollar to build the entertainment center aound the park as he promised when the mesa deal was approved; thus all the tax dollars for bars, restaurants, hotels, will still get lost to tempe, scottsdale and old town.

    106 yrs and counting soon………….there is NO grace period.

    • Brains

      THIS.

      i’ve been saying it for several months but it never occurred to me to use that terms. ricketts is conning us. i’m not sure he’s a “con man” per say, since he obviously made money elsewhere. but none of this has ever added up. the problem is that he’s been dishonest the whole time and cried wolf that he’s too poor for the team. look at this. it’s pitiful. apologies to my optimistic friends here, but you’ve been eating shoveled sh**.

      • Stinky Pete

        When I think of someone getting “conned”, I think that person is losing something of value. I’m not sure what Ricketts is taking from you or the fans of value. And I don’t buy “Time and Money” as a valid answer. The time and money I give to the Chicago Cubs organization is of my own choosing and is not tied to a renovation or rebuilding plan. I would buy the merch and tickets regardless of who the owner is.

        • Brains

          yeah i agree, con is a strong word. but it gets at how cubs fans are feeling these days, perhaps more metaphorically than in reality.

  • Stinky Pete

    When I think of someone getting “conned”, I think that person is losing something of value. I’m not sure what Ricketts is taking from you or the fans of value. And I don’t buy “Time and Money” as a valid answer. The time and money I give to the Chicago Cubs organization is of my own choosing and is not tied to a renovation or rebuilding plan. I would buy the merch and tickets regardless of who the owner is.

  • http://mccarronlegal.com jmc

    I’ve been going to Wrigley since the early 1950s.I love going to Wrigley Field and watching the Cubs God forgive me. But I can’t go to watch them now in the state they are in. if the rest of Cub fans felt the same way the holes would be filled the money would be spent and we would some entertainment again. But as you all know that is not the nature of cubs fans. someone once said a sucker is born every minute.

    • Voice of Reason

      JMC,

      They are a bad ball club, but they have been this bad before since you started going to Wrigley!

      I’ll agree that if attendance continues to fall that they will need to sign a big name free agent to appease that certain group of “Cub fans” who just go to see Sammy hit a home run and it didn’t matter if they won or lost!

      The Cubs had the highest payroll in the National League a couple years ago and they sold tickets like crazy. They filled all the holes with high priced players. Did that get the Cubs a World Series?

      I want to win a World Series! The formula we are using will help us do just that! Look at the Red Sox, the Rays and the Yankees!

      • Jono

        exactly. I want a world series, not a bunch of declining big name players brought in to to put butts in the seats and eyeballs on ads. Do what’s proven to work in today’s modern game.

        • Kyle

          False choice.

          • Jono

            not really. Paying lots of money for unproductive players hurts a team’s chances for success. It hinders their ability to bring in, or keep, guys who are productive.

            • Kyle

              The only way to avoid the risk of paying lots of money to unproductive players is to never pay players lots of money. The prevention is worse than the disease.

              Zito sure did sink the Giants last year.

              • On The Farm

                Or look at Lackey’s contract, terrible 2011, injured 2012. Comes out and posts a 3.2 WAR season and is game 2 starter in the World Series. Sometimes you pay and it doesn’t all work out like you expect, but if you never spend the money you would never have either of the 3+ WAR seasons that Lackey gave you.

              • Jono

                reducing risk isn’t the same as elimating risk. And taking on more risk is more worth it when the reward is greater, like when signing the huge contract puts you into championship contention

                • Kyle

                  “Taking on the risk makes more sense later” is different from what you were saying two posts ago.

                  • Jono

                    No it doesnt

                    • Jono

                      Oops, I mean, “I no its not”

                      They’re different words. But its a different comment. Same idea. Each comment I write will have a different combination of words, but they express or back up a shared idea or belief. Unless someone just copies and pastes the same comment over and over, you can reply with, “that different from what you wrote before”

                    • Jono

                      …here’s how they come together. Right now, it’s not worth taking on really expensive and long contracts bc by the time they’re championship caliber, those players wont be worth their money and those contracts will hinder the team. But signing guys to those kinds of contracts later, when those players put them into championship caliber, it is worth the risk bc those players will be more.productive and worth their money when they’re competing for a championship. You’d rather have those long contract guyscloser to their primes when your competing for a championship than have them past their prime when competing for a championship

                    • Jono

                      “I no it’s not” supposed to be “no it’s not”

                      Im having trouble typing today

            • Jeff

              We payed Jackson 13M a year, iffy, Baker 5.5M, Fieldman 6M

              You win some you lose some, but you have no possibility of any positive outcome if you sit on your hands and don’t spend.

              Fieldman gained us Arrieta and Strop at least.

              Garza got us Olt, Grimm, Edwards and Ramierz

              • Cubbie Blues

                And nobody has said that they won’t go out there and sign those same types of players again this year. The plan isn’t to never sign a FA, it’s to sign FA wisely.

                • Jono

                  exactly

              • Jono

                Exactly, they didn’t just sit on their hands and not spend

        • Chad

          I want a WS championship. I don’t care how it gets done. If buying all the players would do it, then that’s what I want done, but do I believe that will work? No, partly because do you think the quality of players that are FAs would make this team into a winner? I doubt it, but I guess it could happen. I trust the FO to get this done and bring a WS championship to the cubs.

      • Jeff

        As to the Rays, they have had 90 wins seasons 5 out of the last 6 years. They haven’t had a top ten pick in 5 years, they still continue to crank out great talent that reaches the majors.

        Here’s a novel idea, you don’t have to lose 90 games a year to develop future talent.

        You can win at the major league level and still draft well and if your in the position to spend money (Yankees, Red Sox, L.A.),you never have to go through a losing stretch to infuse talent in your minors.

        • Cubbie Blues

          OK, so what is your plan? Who should we have gone after?

          • Jeff

            Who should we be going after is the question, the past is the past.

            Gambles: Josh Johnson

            More sure things: Ellsbury

            The outfield is still thin: need a right handed bat, not sure Lake is super solid, Olt is still a question mark.

            Someone to replace Gregg if he leaves or is allowed to leave, even if Strop takes the job.

            Trades are going to be too difficult because we can’t loose our top guys to say a Price or Scherzer.

            One trade I would like to see is for Dustin Ackley in Seattle, he needs a change of scenery.

            Botttom line is that we should be spending about 30 million in payroll this offseason, that ought to bring several players back with some value returned, whether they stick or are traded down the line.

            • Voice of Reason

              Ellsbury is a more sure thing?

              In his 6 full seasons in the majors he has played over 155 games once. He is injured a lot!

              We don’t need a closer. Close by committee with the bullpen we have and find a closer from those.

              I wouldn’t mind Ackley coming to the Cubs.

              They’re going to add payroll to the team just to fill roster spots. But, they will sign guys for two years or less and for not much money. They would like guys they can flip or maybe get a guy cheap that turns his career around and they can keep him.

              • Patrick W.

                I can’t imagine what Jack Z. would ask for to get Dustin Ackley but I’m guessing it would be somewhere between “too much” and “are you kidding me or kidding yourself? No wonder your organization is a laughing stock!”

                One of the reasons Eric Wedge quit is the organization’s insistence on making him play guys like Ackley and Montero when Wedge (rightly) wanted them sent down (for, you know, a change of scenery). Ackley is an OF now, but he’s not great at it. If you’re thinking of putting him at 2B, just move Valbuena there and you may get the same results.

              • CubsFaninMS

                I second the closer by committee idea. I don’t have tangible numbers/formulas to work with like our FO does, but it looks very apparent that handing large contracts to relievers is rarely a good idea. Relievers such as Mariano Rivero are extremely rare. Eric Gagne, Carlos Marmol, Bobby Thigpen, and those types are generally the norm. The Cardinals appear to have the formula down pat. Like most in here, although I despise the Cardinals, I believe their organizational philosophy appears to be paying major dividends in most of the key areas required to be successful.

            • Cubbie Blues

              Sure thing and Ellsbury do not belong in the same sentence together. His speed (which is his biggest asset) will be gone in 3-4 years and he won’t sign a contract that will be worth it in terms of years or money.

              I agree with Lake and Olt.

              The BP will be accrued internally and with some signings.

              Agreed on Price and Scherzer

              Ackley has only had one decent season and that wasn’t even a full one.

              I am not seeing where you differ that much from the same plan you are railing against.

            • cms0101

              This is what I don’t want to happen though. I don’t want them to sign guys now, whatever the salaries may be, and then not have money to sign better free agents in a better year for free agents. If they can find smart signings that don’t tie up future flexibility, I’d love to see a better product on the field in 2014. Looking at the free agency list for 2014, I don’t see a logical way to buy a World Series. I don’t like Ellsbury. I don’t like Choo. And I won’t sacrifice draft pick pool dollars lost to sign a guy with a qualifying offer if he’s not someone I like as a player for this team. Given that, I think they will have to find this years version of Schierholtz and Navarro and be happy.

              • SH

                I think as Cubs fans we’re snakebit from Soriano. It’s worth remembering that most teams’ FA contracts don’t tie up future flexibility substantially, and that Soriano’s deal was absolutely huge for its time. Signing even an above-average expense FA should not tie up future flexibility of a team in one of the biggest markets in baseball.

                (Fair point re: draft picks, but at some point we need to make good signings — may be wise to do it when it *doesn’t* cost us a first-rounder. Even when we’re finally not focusing exclusively on the minors, its important that we keep infusing new high-quality talent.)

              • Voice of Reason

                cms0101

                You’re exactly right and that is exactly what they will do this offseason!

            • ssckelley

              As others have said Ellsbury is no sure thing, if the Cubs could get him on a 3 or 4 year deal I’d say jump on it. But his demands are going to be very high and the Cubs cannot afford to tie up 100+ million over the next 5-6 years. They need to wait out the market, if come January Ellsbury is still unsigned then pick up the phone and see if they can get him at a reasonable price. Last year Michael Bourne started off with huge contract demands and ended up signing with Cleveland for 4/$48 million. This is the approach the FO has made the past 2 off seasons.

        • Chad

          The core of their team:
          David Price: First overall pick
          Evan Longoria: 3rd overall pick

          Also, last 5 years first round draft picks:
          2009: Levon Washington
          2010: Justin O’Connor and Josh Sale
          2011: Jake Hager and Mikie Mantook
          2012: Richie Shaffer
          2013: Ryan Stanek and Ciuffo

          No the rays haven’t drafted at the top in the last 5 years, but their 2 best players were top of the draft picks, so that sure is important when you are trying to build a team. Just look at the 2 best players on the Nationals as an example. The orioles are another great example.

        • Edwin

          The Rays built their farm system under different rules than the Cubs now play under. The Rays didn’t need to worry about draft spending restrictions, and the Rays also had more of an opportunity to aquire draft picks due to the old Type A/Type B FA compensation system.

          To your last point, the Cubs are not as close to being in the same position as the Red Sox, Yankees, either L.A. team, or even the Rangers. A new TV deal and renovated stadium, along with better signage and use of the surrounding Wrigley area to enhance revenue streams should help that though.

          • Kyle

            When the Rays built the successful portion of their farm system, they didn’t have a single first-round compensation pick. They didn’t get their first as a franchise until 2010.

            Were they big overslotters? I don’t recall.

            • Illini Iceman

              The Rays definitely were not aggressively over slotting.

            • Edwin

              Shoddy research by me, I guess. My bad. Still, I think it is slightly harder to build a farm system now than it was a few years ago.

              • Kyle

                It’s a zero-sum game.

  • Voice of Reason

    The Yankees prior to Posada, Jeter and Rivera had some rough seasons. Before the Red Sox started winning they had the longest drought in the American League without winning a World Series. And, when they started winning it was because of their successful young talent. If by L.A. you mean the Dodgers, they haven’t been that successful over the past 15 years.

    The three teams you mentioned WENT THROUGH LOSING STREAKS TO INFUSE MINOR LEAGUE TALENT!!!!!!!!!!!!

    • Kyle

      Breaking my rule about only responding to people worth responding to, I’m going to ask you when you think Boston’s losing streak was.

      • DarthHater

        “Breaking my rule about only responding to people worth responding to…”

        The Crushing Fist of Passive Aggression. Snap.

      • MightyBear

        Is that why you never respond to me? It’s all coming clear.

        • ssckelley

          Kyle responded to me once. I printed it out and had it framed.

          • DarthHater

            He has responded to me now and then. But I always got the impression he felt it was less something worth doing than an unpleasant necessity, like flossing or getting regular colonoscopies.

            • Fishin Phil

              It was a pity response.

          • Kyle

            I’ll sign it for you at the next Cubs’ playoff game

            • http://deepcenterfield.blogspot.com Jason Powers

              I agree with Kyle, for once.

              The Titanic must be about to rise!

              Lots of apologists for the losing ways. Starting to sound like Bud Selig has convince Cubs fans of, “a regularly recurring reasonable hope of reaching post-season play.”

              Once every 5-7 years. But will wait until 2016…

              Hillary will be President, Janet Yellen, the Fed Chair, and a new Marla Collins (without the 80s hairstyle) will be at Wrigley! We win 100 games! Book those playoff tickets NOW! ;)

              [img]http://wischlist.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/08/marla.jpg[/img]

              • Cubbie Blues

                She should really get that spot on her leg checked out.

      • MightyBear

        Based on the number of your posts and the number of people not worth responding to, I’d venture to guess that the rule is pretty flexible.

        • DarthHater

          Notice that he has not responded to either of us, MB. :-P

          • ssckelley

            [img]http://www.beergodblog.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/06/werenotworthy.png[/img]

            • YourResidentJag

              That’s great.

        • Jono

          He’s responded to me, so clearly his standards are pretty low

          • ssckelley

            Jono, you respond to yourself more than anybody. I’ve been waiting for you to start an argument with yourself.

          • Jono

            I disagree. You’re so clever and have interesting points of view that challenge preconceived notions

            • Jono

              No, he’s right. He’s an idiot. No one should respond to him

              • Jono

                Yea? Well you were born in st louis

                • Jono

                  F U

                  • DarthHater

                    [img]http://farm4.staticflickr.com/3789/10463969626_e46795d176_o.jpg[/img]

      • twinkletoez

        1960 to 1967 :)

    • SH

      A) They Yankees did not have a *nineteen-year* run of success because they were terrible in the late 1980s under an entirely different CBA

      B) Excluding last season’s fluke year, the Red Sox had exactly four sub-.500 seasons in the last twenty years (we’ve had that many in a row to date)

      C) The Dodgers have had three only sub-.500 seasons and five trips to the playoffs in the past fifteen years — incl. three trips to LCS in past five years and a likely immediate future of winning the division

  • http://mccarronlegal.com jmc

    Sammy Sosa.I’m a criminal defense attorney years ago I was driving to my home in the western suburbs when I got a call to turn around interview a prospective client on the westside of Chicago who was wanted for the shooting of a police officeer according to all news reports. I did and when I arrived at the location was met by the gang banger would called me as well as two shorties with automatic weapons. Shorty is slang for a child who is a wannabe gang member.I was assured that my new Cadillac would not be stolen. Nervously I left my car went through an abandoned building up the fire escape and another abandoned building into an apartment where several thugs had automatic rifles and a tableful of drugs as well as a TV set tune to the Cubs. Sammy Sosa came up to bat the crack pipes were put down the rifles were put down I stop giving legal advice and we all watch Sammy to see if he was going to hit a homerun.the Cubs have the power for all of us to forget our troubles if only for a moment. just not at present.
    Oh, when in trouble call Saul lol.

    • DarthHater

      I understand Al Capone was a baseball fan, too:
      [img]http://cdnl.complex.com/mp/620/400/90/0/bb/1/ffffff/3d8f4f8721bd37935aa614bf883e29b1/images_/assets/CHANNEL_IMAGES/POP_CULTURE/2013/05/the-25-greatest-movie-beatdowns-in-gifs/jnrqp_tu_570225.gif[/img]

      • http://deepcenterfield.blogspot.com Jason Powers

        We need him to FIX a few things…

    • Jeff

      JMC,

      Shorty or shawty is slang for a female!

  • http://mccarronlegal.com jmc

    lol darth hater nobody got killed after I got involved. All you youngsters out there don’t do drugs don’t use guns don’t grow up to be Cubs lovers. it all ends in bad things r.o.f.l

  • Die hard

    Wonder if the IRS read article ?

  • Aaron

    Let’s continue with Theo’s 5 year rebuilding plan of the Cubs. The savings in payroll over the next 2 seasons will go towards paying for the renovations for Wrigley Field. Going into the 5th year, we should have increased revenue streams, top minor league talent on the roster and perhaps a top tier free agent or two to help the Cubs be a contending team for at least 5 years or more. The value of the Cubs in 3-5 years will be closer to $2 billion.

    • http://deepcenterfield.blogspot.com Jason Powers

      Stalin had 5-year plans too. Mao Zedong had his Great Leap Forward.

      When someone tells you 5 years, you run the other direction.

      The President of the United States gets only 4 years. And half that time is running for next election. You telling me it takes 5 years before we can win more than lose in a season??? If we can arrest a Great Depression in 4 years, we should be able to build a f-ing baseball team to over .500, and compete.

      The last time the Cubs had more than 3 consecutive over .500 seasons was when Leo was around. And 2007-2009 we had exactly 3. Before that, you would have saw FDR as your President.

      So I give Theo/Jed until the end of 2014 season to show us what he’s doing to get us to a winning 2015 season.

      Else, I will be more Kylish than KYLE.

  • http://mccarronlegal.com jmc

    IRS are probably Yankee fans

  • http://mccarronlegal.com jmc

    yeah Jeff I know until children do something bad they won’t be a man in that upside down culture. my only point was that cubs have potential to unite all of us

  • YourResidentJag
  • The Dude

    Reading the comments all day at work on my phone and finally have the chance to comment (great discussions today). To me, the time is right to start signing some free agents to win with. With another high draft pick coming next summer, the minors have officially been restocked. We have a lot of money coming off the books, and I can’t see any scenario where the Cubs punt another year. If you concede that all FA contracts are “bad money” then this is the best time to spend it because it’s not being bet on an aging major league roster. Instead, it would be hedging a bet on our minor league players.

    To me, it’s not a matter of losing patience. I think the time is right to start building back up after the tear down… I think the FO saw this coming last offseason, and their plan to nab Anibal Sanchez would be looking prime, if it had worked out.

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