So, let’s see. Today is November 2. Pitchers and catchers will report to Spring Training for the Cubs right around mid-February. That’s three and a half months to kill before there’s something approximating Cubs baseball back in our lives.
We can do it, friends.
Thankfully, the offseason is always fun – and free agency just opened up to kick things off.
- Speaking of which, Yu Darvish looked just awful again last night, spinning his breaking pitches up there like looping batting practice fastballs. And his fastball didn’t quite go where he wanted. He looked off, mechanically, without the ability to stay on top of his pitches. Fatigue, perhaps? Whatever it was, he got blown up badly for the second straight World Series start, and it is now impossible to believe his free agency won’t be impacted, especially when you consider that giving up bombs was one of his big problems this season. Or maybe it was just the slick World Series balls. Darvish, after all, was very good with the Dodgers before the World Series.
- I don’t think the 31-year-old Darvish is going to have to settle for a three-year deal or anything like that – the market is just too needy – but I do think, when you consider the whole of his season, that seven-year contract just might not be there for him. A couple recent Giants signings might provide some guidance. He’ll do better than Jeff Samardzija’s five-year, $90 million contract, but I wonder if he’ll wind up in the range of Johnny Cueto’s six-year, $130 million contract, minus the opt out after two years (which has proved to be a disastrous inclusion for the Giants). There will be teams eagerly waiting out the 2018 free agent class, so it’s at least conceivable that the market for Darvish will be limited. My guess is he gets something very similar to Cueto’s deal, minus the opt out (perhaps the opt out comes later in Darvish’s deal), unless there are strong signals that getting Darvish WILL give you a leg up on getting Shohei Otani, then all bets are off.
- The Cubs will be involved on Darvish, I have no doubt. But it might be more along the lines of “see if the market is REALLY weak for him” than “go all out to get him”. I will be really, really interested to see his market develop over the coming weeks. Recall, he cannot be made a qualifying offer since he was traded midseason, so at least there’s no draft pick compensation at stake.
- As boos rained down, Yuli Gurriel tipped his helmet to Yu Darvish in his first plate appearance, acknowledging publicly his big mistake from Game Three:
Yuli Gurriel tips his helmet towards Yu Darvish before his at-bat. pic.twitter.com/IotpfddcrY
— Joon Lee (@iamjoonlee) November 2, 2017
- Gurriel then went on to force Darvish to throw 13 pitches, only further cementing that he did not have it last night.
- This will soon change:
RT while you can pic.twitter.com/WGLZWbn0NB
— Wrigley Field (@WrigleyBlog) November 2, 2017
- Carlos Correa had a better day than most, winning the World Series and then getting engaged on the field during the celebration.
- Speaking of the win, the Astros rebuilt deeply and won, which will get a lot of talk this offseason (just as it did for the Cubs last year).
- The MLB Shop just got in a whole bunch of new Disney/Cubs crossover shirts, so if you know some Cubs-Disney fans, you can get started on your holiday gift shopping right here.
- If anyone tries to fly a drone at Wrigley Field, they can expect the same treatment, except with beer cups instead of TP, and much less incredible accuracy:
That's a hero move right there. pic.twitter.com/Q6JHGuakrg
— Brett Taylor (@Brett_A_Taylor) November 2, 2017
- A new ‘Star Wars’ trailer dropped during Game Seven last night:
— Star Wars (@starwars) November 2, 2017
- Over in the Bears’ world (no baseball, but you can still follow football!), head coach John Fox still believes the Bears can win the NFC North. Optimism reigns.
- Deals of the Day at Amazon include coffee and an upright, cordless vacuum. Meanwhile, they’ve got a 61% off lightning deal on a compact, heavy-duty travel umbrella that looks like a nice sale. It ends in the early afternoon today, by the way.