The good news if you’re a schadenfreuder is that the Diamondbacks beat the Brewers yesterday to force a Game Five in their NLDS series. The bad news is that the Cardinals did the same to the Phillies.
- Carlos Zambrano says he does talk to new Marlins manager Ozzie Guillen almost every day, but (I think) denies that the talks are about brining Zambrano to Miami (the article is in Spanish, so if anyone wants to help out my translation, drop a comment). Because Zambrano remains under contract with the Cubs, Guillen is prohibited by MLB’s tampering rules from discussing Zambrano joining the Marlins.
- Bob Brenly is clearly on a post-season candidness tour. Latest stop? Destroy Aramis Ramirez Station. Back on Waddle and Silvy, Brenly lit into the possibly-departing Cubs third baseman. “He’s a numbers gatherer,” Brenly said. “He gets his stats at the end of the year every year, but, defensively, he’s just fallen off the face of the earth. As a baserunner he kills you. He’s a log jammer on the bases, and I’m not buying any of this leadership for Starlin Castro stuff at all …. It’s hard to think back recently, especially last year, and remember any big RBIs that he had or any period of time where they won a lot of games because of the way Aramis was swinging the bat …. A lot of pitchers would never go public with this information … double-play balls that aren’t turned because Aramis takes so long to get rid of the ball to get it to second base. He’s gotten a number of second baseman just clobbered out there on double-play attempts. In the grand scheme of things, it may seem like a small thing. But, over 162 games, the double plays that you don’t turn that lead to more pitches for your pitcher, that lead to more opportunities for the opposition.
- Brett Jackson came in at number four on Baseball America’s list of top Southern League prospects (AA, where Jackson spent the first half of his year), behind only playoff superstars, Matt Moore and Paul Goldschmidt, and Diamondbacks’ stud, Tyler Skaggs.
- Jackson also shows up as one of Fangraphs’ guesses for 2012 Rookie of the Year.
- Greg Maddux isn’t thinking much about his future with the Cubs’ organization right now. Instead, he’s dealing with his daughter’s serious health issues. Thoughts go out to the Maddux family.
- Phil Rogers makes the case that keeping Albert Pujols might wind up being the worst thing, long-term, for the Cardinals.
- Justin Berg and Brian Schlitter, who were designated for assignment last week, have been outrighted to AAA Iowa.
- Steve Jobs passed away yesterday. That might seem apropos of nothing on a Chicago Cubs site, but, setting aside the man’s genius and lifelong dedication to the perfection of consumer-facing products, his impact is felt every day in my coverage of the Cubs. I’m typing this on my Mac, and checking Theo Epstein rumors on my iPhone. I doubt I’m alone as a sports fan whose experience has been improved thanks to the hard work of Steve Jobs.
Role for Higgins, No Competitive Balance Pick for the Cardinals, Projections on the Reds and Pirates, and Other Cubs Bullets
Lukewarm Stove: Red Sox Still Have a Shot at Bogaerts, Guardians Want Murphy, Relief Market About to Open, More
Fields “Looks Like Himself” in Return, Rodgers Plan, Nagy’s Other Legacy, Beware of Slay’s Kindness, and Other Bears Bullets