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New Reliever Robert Coello Happy to Be a Cub

A little less than a week ago, the Chicago Cubs traded second base prospect Tony Thomas to the Red Sox for reliever/prospect Robert Coello, whom the Red Sox had to dump to clear up space on their 40-man roster. It was a surprising move, given the Cubs’ depth in the bullpen this year, but Coello […]

The Cubs Aren’t Just Playing Around with James Russell as a Starter

Folks: teach your children to throw with their left hand. James Russell was a moderately successful minor league starter for a few years before breaking through last Spring Training as a reliever. In that role, he also found moderate success. But he throws left-handed, and, because the Chicago Cubs don’t have another lefty option for […]

Carlos Zambrano: Softball Player

Many professional sports contracts preclude players from participating in non-sanctioned extracurricular athletic activities like pick-up basketball games or extreme baking. After learning that Carlos Zambrano recently played some softball, I am wondering whether Chicago Cubs player contracts have the same kind of language. According to a Sports Illustrated reader, who provided the picture at right: “Last night […]

Obsessive Albert Pujols Watch: Aramis Ramirez Wants Pujols, Likes Carlos Pena

From the moment Albert Pujols declined to sign an extension with the Cardinals by his self-imposed deadline, thus (theoretically) ensuring his ascendency into free agency after the season, we all knew an Obsessive Watch was coming. So here we are. That said, Pujols feels like he deserves something special, on the order of OMG Brian […]

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Grumble: Aramis Ramirez and Starlin Castro Still Not in Camp

Although yesterday was the official Spring Training report date for positional players, all but a handful of Chicago Cubs were already in camp long before Friday. Included in that handful were annual laggards Alfonso Soriano and Aramis Ramirez, and second year shortstop Starlin Castro. Soriano missed Friday’s workout, but arrived last evening. Unfortunately Ramirez and […]

Marlon Byrd is Beefy, But It’s All Supplements and Exercise

Chicago Cubs center fielder Marlon Byrd is a thick, hulking dude. And if he had the power numbers of an Albert Pujols or Alex Rodriguez, or say, Jose Bautista, people would probably speculate about the source of Byrd’s prodigious biceps. As it is, no one is particularly concerned with PEDs when it comes to Marlon […]

Mike Quade is Ready for Scrutiny, Speaking in Third Person

When Jim Hendry announced that interim manager Mike Quade, a career minor league manager and big league bench coach, would be taking over as the next manager of the Chicago Cubs, the reaction was best described as measured optimism. The players seemed to be pleased with the selection, but fans, who’d just seen Quade lead […]

Did the Rangers and Cubs Discuss a Michael Young Trade?

This week, the Texas Rangers went from we-aren’t-trading-Michael-Young to we-have-to-trade-Michael-Young back to we-aren’t-trading-Michael-Young, all in the span of a few days. It is safe to assume that the book-ends of that back-and-forth are mere posturing, and, as an expensive, disgruntled, superfluous player, Young’s days in Arlington are numbered. The Chicago Cubs have never been a […]

The Chicago Cubs Had a Good Offseason

If the offseason were the season, the Chicago Cubs might have made the playoffs. That’s because, according to ESPN’s Jayson Stark, the Cubs had the second best offseason in the NL Central (behind, obviously, the Brewers). Well, the Cubs got better. We’ll give them that. But how much better? That depends. Depends on whether Garza can […]

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Dusty Baker Is Afraid of the Chicago Cubs

It’s ok to admit it. Dusty Baker’s success with the Cincinnati Reds last year kind of roiled you. Sure, the success wasn’t much different than he saw with the Cubs, but he did it with a whole lot less payroll, and it looked like a lot more fun. It bugged me. I’m a small man. […]

New Pitching Coach Mark Riggins Hates the Towel Drill As Much As You Do

An often unfactored loss this offseason, when contemplating the Chicago Cubs’ expected 2011 performance, is the loss of pitching coach Larry Rothschild, who headed off to join the Yankees after 10 years with the Cubs. Say what you will about the team’s performance in the last decade, but one thing has been consistent: the Cubs […]

Cubs Are Close to Long-Term Deal with Carlos Marmol

The Chicago Cubs and closer Carlos Marmol have been working on a long-term deal for a few weeks now. The two sides would like to reach an agreement in lieu of arbitration, for which Marmol is eligible the second time. Marmol requested $5.65 million for 2011 and the Cubs offered $4.1 million. According to the Chicago […]

Is Sean Marshall an Option for the Rotation?

After dealing Tom Gorzelanny, the Chicago Cubs are faced with the prospect of having an all right-handed rotation. Some would contend that having a lefty among your five starters (rather than just starting your five best) is a luxury, not a necessity – and a team would be foolish to start a lefty just for […]

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More Scouting Info on the Cubs’ Two Recent Cuban Signees

Baseball America has a bit more information on the two newest members of the Chicago Cubs’ farm system (pending visa issues), Ruby Silva and Yaniel Cabeza. Silva, a 21-year-old lefthanded hitter, signed for a $1 million bonus. At around 5-foot-11, 180 pounds, Silva is a good athlete who has played both center and right field […]

Cubs Sign Two Cuban Prospects

New Chicago Cubs’ owner Tom Ricketts appears to be making good on his promise to spend, in other areas, what he doesn’t spend on the Major League roster. To wit, today the Cubs signed two relatively big-time Cuban players – outfielder Ruby Silva and catcher Yaniel Cabeza – to add to their system depth. Cabeza […]

Ryne Sandberg is Happy to Be in the Phillies’ Organization

When Ryne Sandberg was passed over for the Chicago Cubs’ open managerial job in favor of the more tenured – but less famous and less adored by Cubs fans – Mike Quade, the writing was on the wall: he wasn’t going back to manage AAA Iowa. So when he left to do the same job […]

Brett Jackson is – Still – a Top Prospect

Another day, another rankings accolade for the Chicago Cubs’ top prospect, outfielder Brett Jackson. He’s been ranked among the top 50 prospects in baseball. Jackson’s ability was recognized on MLB.com’s 2011 Top 50 Prospects list, announced on Tuesday night, at No. 46. Jackson checked in one spot ahead of pitcher Chris Archer, who was sent […]

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Jeff Samardzija Sounds Dangerously Close to How He Sounded Last Year

At the time of the 2010 Chicago Cubs Spring Training, there were no fewer than four guys competing for two back-end rotation spots: Tom Gorzelanny, Carlos Silva, Sean Marshall and Jeff Samardzija. Marshall pitched the best out of the group, but ended up in the bullpen. Silva and Gorzelanny won the rotation spots. Samardzija pitched […]

Competition Brewing Between Aramis Ramirez and Carlos Pena?

Chicago Cubs third baseman Aramis Ramirez is coming off his worst season with the team. New Cubs first baseman Carlos Pena is coming off his worst season in recent memory. Both are hoping for a bounce back in 2011, but one doesn’t really have anything to do with the other, right? Each hopes for success […]

Chicago Cubs and Carlos Marmol Continue to Discuss Long-Term Deal

Closer Carlos Marmol is the last remaining arbitration-eligible player on the roster, and the Cubs aren’t looking to take chances – they want to lock the pitcher up for not only 2011, but beyond. In the case of Carlos Marmol, you have a closer who has been as close to being an everyday player as […]

Brett Jackson is a Top Prospect

It’s no surprise that, now that Chris Archer’s mailing address reads “some Tampa Bay minor league team,” Brett Jackson is roundly considered the Chicago Cubs’ top prospect. And, given his excellent swing, speed and defense, perhaps it’s equally unsurprising that he’s getting consideration as one of the best prospects in baseball. Jackson was recently ranked […]

Happy and Sad Personal News for Chicago Cubs

You take the good with the bad, I suppose, and yesterday, the Chicago Cubs family got a bit of each. On the sad end, Alfonso Soriano’s mother passed away suddenly of an apparent heart attack. ESPNdeportes.com reported the news of Andrea Soriano’s death after hearing from the player. According to that report, a funeral service […]

Cubs Sign Lost Friend, Luis Montanez

In 2000, the Chicago cubs drafted high upside youngster Luis Montanez third overall. That was the pinnacle of Montanez’s career. He bounced around the minors for a number of years with marginal success, before being sent packing to where all Cubs prospects go to fade away – Baltimore. There, he actually saw some time in […]

The Cubs Just Secured a Top Prospect: Matt Szczur

The Chicago Cubs’ thinning prospect corps just received a shot in the arm when Villanova wide receiver Matt Szczur, drafted by the Cubs in the 5th round last year, but thought to prefer a future in the NFL, agreed to stick with baseball for good. The $1.5 million to which the Cubs upped their signing […]