Between Starts Prep, Cubs Roster Prep, New Beat Writer, and Other Bullets

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Between Starts Prep, Cubs Roster Prep, New Beat Writer, and Other Bullets

Chicago Cubs

I have had an extraordinarily wild 24 hours that featured The Wife out of town, three kiddos to manage and transport and feed and bathe and whatever, my back blowing up on me again, our ad providers letting some of those stupid mobile redirect ads slip through causing me to have to try to fix it, a basement flood averted at the last minute late on a Friday night when the sump pump died, and then a basement flood actualized on Saturday morning when the piping from the new sump pump busted. I am going to eat so much ice cream tonight …

  • I love these behind-the-scenes looks at the Cubs:

  • How about the comments there from Kyle Hendricks at the end (whose numbers back this up over the years): he wants to use the 200 innings of the regular season to make himself stronger, not break himself down. And if he uses those innings well, then he actually does feel stronger as the year goes on, rather than depleting himself. It’s easier said than done, but it’s probably something to keep in mind as you watch his seasons play out, where he now pretty consistently starts out seemingly a little slower, and then gets better and better as the season goes on. Maybe that’s just him playing a savvy long game and understanding his body.
  • Internal rosters must be set by Tuesday for the purposes of the Rule 5 Draft (i.e., if you want to protect an eligible prospect, he’s gotta go on the 40-man roster by Tuesday). looked at the Top 30 organizational prospects for each club who are eligible for the Rule 5 Draft this year. As you know, Justin Steele (ranked 8th right now) is the big name for the Cubs, but the others in’s Top 30 are Trevor Clifton (17), Earling Moreno (25), and Jason Vosler (28). Clifton and Vosler are “maybes” right now, thanks to their proximity to the big leagues and potential. Moreno is still probably too far from the big leagues to realistically be plucked. Were the rankings re-done after the Arizona Fall League, I think you’d see Erick Leal on there, and he’s another guy the Cubs will seriously have to consider protecting.
  • Arizona Phil has your full list of eligible Cubs prospects here, but I don’t see anyone else realistically under consideration for being plucked at this time. There are definitely some compelling prospects, but mostly in the lower levels, and making that leap to the big leagues – even on a rebuilding club – is frequently too much to ask.
  • Right now, the Cubs’ 40-man roster stands at 39, so the Cubs will have to do some cleanup before Tuesday if they want to add multiple prospects. Other clubs will be in the same boat around baseball, so you might see minor trades happening in the next few days.
  • Joe Maddon, doing good:

  • The Orioles have their new GM, Mike Elias, who comes from the Astros. He is also part of the Cardinals’ front office tree:

  • Construction at Wrigley Field continues with a country’s worth of scaffolding:

  • The Cubs have a new beat writer at, and although it was sad to see Carrie Muskat go, Jordan Bastian has long been one of my favorite non-Cubs beat writers. So this is great news:

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Author: Brett Taylor

Brett Taylor is the Editor and Lead Cubs Writer at Bleacher Nation, and you can find him on Twitter at @BleacherNation and @Brett_A_Taylor.