Marlins Park, here I come. I can’t wait to see the digs – including the most gloriously insane ballpark decoration in the world – but mostly, I can’t wait to see real Cubs baseball. This team looks so good on paper, and it’s just going to be fun to follow them this year. I know it.
As for the game and the series, well, the Marlins project to be quite terrible. Truly awful by design. But, even the worst of teams wins almost 40% of the time, so you can’t guarantee a win in this series, much less any particular given day. That said, with apologies in advance, if the Cubs don’t take three of four in this series, it’s going to be a big bummer to start the season. Four great pitchers going against a terrible team, all totally fresh, and the lineup looking really great by the end of Spring Training.
- Bleed Cubbie Blue’s Al Yellon was at the back fields yesterday watching Tyler Chatwood’s tuneup when he could help but notice that a No. 8 sure looked a heck of a lot like former Cub Chris Coghlan, who wore that number. The outfielder is a free agent, and obviously had tremendous success with the Cubs, so him coming on a minor league deal would make plenty of sense. I looked at the pictures and video – from a distance, given the field they were on – and the batting stance, mannerisms, and everything really does look like Coghlan. I think the Cubs may have signed him to a minor league deal.
- More from minor league camp, Arizona Phil reports that the following minor leaguers have been released: RHP David Berg, LHP Marc Huberman, RHP Mark Malave, RHP Steve Perakslis, LHP Carson Sands, LHP Tommy Thorpe, C-1B Cael Brockmeyer, 1B-3B Kevin Cornelius, 1B-3B Adonis Paula, and OF Robert Garcia. Sand is no doubt the biggest name that sands out to you, he being the first of three big-time high school arms selected and signed by the Cubs with their savings from drafting Kyle Schwarber fourth overall in 2014 (the others being Dylan Cease (since traded to the White Sox) and Justin Steele (currently recovering from Tommy John surgery). Injuries and ineffectiveness beset Sands immediately, and the lefty never really got his footing with the Cubs.
- Old friend Starlin Castro will be at second base for the Marlins today, and although most of us feel bad that he just missed out on what the Cubs did in 2016, he has no bad feelings (NBC): “I watched the whole World Series and I cheered for them. Some people can say, ‘nah,’ but I feel good for all my teammates and the city of Chicago. They deserved that championship.” Castro deserved a ring. Hopefully he kicks ass, and then is traded to a contender in July.
- This is nuts:
— Joe Frisaro (@JoeFrisaro) March 29, 2018
- Soak it in, guys. Don’t worry about the outcome of the game. Just enjoy the experience …
- Early leaders for expansion?
Rob Manfred described Montreal and San Antonio as “big-league cities” in an interview today on @MLBNetworkRadio. He said @MLB would like to get to 32 teams, but Rays and A’s stadiums must be resolved first. @MLBNetwork
— Jon Morosi (@jonmorosi) March 29, 2018
- So, the Brewers’ initial roster sure is interesting:
— Milwaukee Brewers (@Brewers) March 29, 2018
- Seven relievers, three and a half (Braun) first basemen, and three and a half outfielders. Weird. And apparently it won’t last:
Brewers won’t need a fully-stocked bullpen because everyone is fresh, so it was an opportunity to carry an extra bat for the opening series. The likelihood of another outside ‘pen addition like Torres in ‘16 and Hughes in ‘17 is high. It just didn’t get done by Opening Day.
— Adam McCalvy (@AdamMcCalvy) March 29, 2018
Sources: #Brewers in agreement with left-handed reliever Dan Jennings, pending physical. #Rays released Jennings after he failed to make club. @Haudricourt had mentioned MIL was close to adding reliever.
— Ken Rosenthal (@Ken_Rosenthal) March 29, 2018
- Big news on the media side of things:
— Cubs Talk (@NBCSCubs) March 28, 2018
- Glanville was always great in his time at ESPN – thoughtful and candid from a former player perspective – so this is a great addition for NBC.
- Levi’s jeans, belts, wallets, and more are the Deal of the Day at Amazon today.