It’s sad to think that Mr. Cub missed out on the tremendous 2015 season, and won’t be around to see this current crew compete year in and year out, with perhaps the best chance in a long time to finally win it all.
- Apropos of nothing: as I think about the Cubs not having a draft pick until the second round in this year’s draft (or third round if Dexter Fowler doesn’t sign soon!), I usually think about their aggressive splurge in the international market being what covers them up for not having a first rounder and not having a large bonus pool in the draft. But you know what else is heartening? Look at how many legitimately interesting prospects the Cubs got out of the last couple drafts in the later rounds who *weren’t* over-slot signings, and instead were just purely impressive scouting jobs: Ryan Williams, Chesny Young, Jeremy Null, Jason Vosler, Brad Markey, P.J. Higgins, Kyle Twomey, Preston Morrison, etc. There are very interesting players to be had after the first few rounds that the Cubs will be able to select and sign without having a huge bonus pool or a high draft pick. Of course it’s always better to have high picks and a huge bonus pool (clearly, the Cubs do very well with those, too), but since that won’t be happening this year, at least we know this group is also very good at the rest of the drafting game.
- The Padres have designated former top prospect Rymer Liriano for assignment to make room on the 40-man roster for Alexei Ramirez. It was a surprising move to say the least, given that Liriano is just 24, plays good defense all over the outfield, runs well, and has hit very well in the upper minors the last few years. He’s got contact problems, to be sure, and that’s what sinks so many guys who look great across the board at AAA and then can’t quite make the leap to the bigs. Maybe that’ll always be Liriano, too. But boy wouldn’t he be a nice guy for a team like the Cubs to have at AAA as both depth and a development play (he’s out of options, so to keep him, he’d first have to clear waivers at the end of Spring Training). In the end, I’m sure there will be a dozen teams interested in giving him some time, including rebuilding clubs that’ll have more leeway than the Cubs.
- There are plenty of connections between this front office and Liriano’s time in the San Diego system, for whatever that’s worth, though, as all of Jed Hoyer, Jason McLeod, and Jaron Madison would have had some time overlapping with Liriano.
- The Pirates have lost a few key members of their organization this offseason, and one more is heading out: director of player personnel Tyrone Brooks is taking a job with MLB.
- Myrtle Beach Pelicans broadcaster Scott Kornberg interviewed me at CubsCon.
- Snowed in and dreaming of summer? Get yourself some Cubs Crocs as a sign of confidence – confidence that warm weather will come soon, and also confidence that you can pull off Crocs.
- Speaking of the blizzard, Carlos Correa had apparently never seen snow falling before, and he did what any sensible person would do if they found themselves stuck in a snow-bound New York in that situation: he played snow baseball.
- Wow – not only is this chart beautiful on its own merits, just look at the range of that Pirates outfield:
— Daren Willman (@darenw) January 23, 2016
- Among the reasons for considering the DH in the NL
— Jared Diamond (@jareddiamond) January 23, 2016