Chicago Cubs 2016 NL Central Championship Gear

theo epstein press conferenceA little housekeeping: the Taylor Family is going to Disney World. From Saturday to Thursday, we’re gonna be high-fivin’ Mickey, dancing with a storm trooper, and taking tea with Belle. Although there will still be coverage here at BN during that time, you will undoubtedly notice it is reduced. If there are breaking news/rumor bits, we may be a little later to get to them during those days than usual. This is my one vacation for the year, so you’ll just have to indulge me.

  • Cubs President of Baseball Operations Theo Epstein discussed a variety of topics, and you can see a healthy rundown here at One item that really caught my eye was his suggestion that some agents are looking to move a little more quickly and some teams are more prepared on trades than they have been at this point in years past. In other words, it’s conceivable that we could see more action here in the first few weeks of November than we typically do (usually, you see one or two big signings in baseball in November, and perhaps one or two significant trades – otherwise, it’s mostly a whole lot of build-up to an explosion of activity in late November and into December). We have already seen two notable trades, and now a rumor about Andrelton Simmons, so that could be the start of things moving forward in a bit of a cascade. Tomorrow is the deadline for players to accept or decline qualifying offers, so that should also move some things forward.
  • Epstein added here at ESPN (among many other things) that although the Cubs are interested in “investing in a solid reliever” this offseason, but they have to balance that desire against other needs – and they’re not going to pay big for a reliever if it impedes their ability to add the starting pitcher(s) they need. I certainly respect that, and it’s the right approach to prioritize the starter … but it would be awfully disappointing if the Cubs cannot do what they want/need to do in the bullpen this offseason.

  • Former Cubs manager, and current White Sox bench coach, Rick Renteria finally addressed his dismissal from the Cubs last year, and, as you’d expect, he was all class (ESPN). It sounds like he understands it was just a bad situation, and was just business, even if it was obviously disappointing. It should continue to be remembered that Renteria did a very good job with what he was charged to do in 2014. Without his efforts that season, I suspect the Cubs aren’t as successful in 2015 as they were.
  • More from Cubs Business President Crane Kenney on the possible Cubs TV Network here, and you can listen to the whole interview here.
  • MLB is looking at a rules change on slides into second base.
  • The Pirates and Marlins made a swap last month that looked like a bizarre steal for the Pirates, but it actually was tied to executive compensation. In short: the Pirates lost a couple top execs to the Marlins, who then had to give up a good prospect to get the deals done.
  • Gold Gloves are getting statistically closer to being “accurate.”
  • Per BN’er Dennis: “Kris Bryant led all rookies in RBIs (99), doubles (31) and runs (87), and was second in walks (77) while batting .275. (Bryant also had 26 home runs). The only player in Major League history to reach 26 homers, 99 RBIs, 31 doubles, 87 runs and 77 walks in his rookie season was Boston’s Ted Williams, in 1939.”

  • The Indians were very uncool on Twitter yesterday, and the Cubs gave them an appropriate GIF response.
  • Cubs on Amazon: I have had the same floor mats – Simpsons – in all of my cars since I started driving 18 years ago. But if I weren’t married to having those same mats for the entirety of my driving life (they don’t seem to fit every car all that well, but whatever), I might look into Cubs floor mats. Seriously. They exist!

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