Baseball for the Thinking Fan

Login | Register | Feedback

btf_logo

News

All News | Prime News

Old-School Newsstand


Contributors

Jim Furtado
Founder & Publisher
Repoz
Editor - Baseball Primer

Syndicate

Cubs Newsbeat

Tuesday, January 09, 2018

Life of a scouting report: How the Cubs have streamlined an age-old process – The Athletic

A lot of good stuff at The Athletic recently. If you can get access at a discount, you should.

“Our scouts don’t travel to the draft,” Dorey said. “So it’s my job to really challenge analytic information we have if it doesn’t align with what our scouts are saying, and try to find the sweet spot there. I’m constantly trying to make sure that the voice of the scout doesn’t get lost in the entire profile of the player. And I think we’ve done a really good job of that, but it’s something we could continue to improve on. We’re still talking about 17-, 18-, 19-, and 20-year-old human beings, and the human nature is so tough to evaluate and project on.”

In recent years, the Cubs haven’t weighed hitches in a pitcher’s mechanics as heavily as they have in the past — burned, too often, by pitchers they passed on finding success with other teams. And they’ve learned that certain players, often upper-middle-class travel-team types, can be taught the right things to say at meetings with scouts, even when those things aren’t necessarily reflective of the player’s actual personality or skills.

Weighed heavily, by contrast, are scouts’ evaluations of a player’s overall athleticism (a term the Cubs operationalize as carefully as they do secretly), that player’s hatred of losing (which the Cubs care about far more than a player’s desire to win), and of course the R&D reports that the nerd squad at the Cubs’ offices in Lakeview dig up. Even so, it’s still tough to get it all right.

The long timelines that baseball imposes on front offices make the job difficult, too. Unlike in basketball or football, where a draft’s success or failure can be measured within 12-24 months, the Cubs’ front office is only now starting to understand how and why their 2012 draft worked or didn’t, and only now able to fully integrate the lessons of that year into their planning for the next one. It’ll be another half-decade before they know if they got that one right, either.

And so today, right now, the Cubs are hard at work, ferociously collecting all the data they can about the past, making with it the best possible decisions they can about the fleeting present, and constantly revising their expectations of what those choices might mean for their future.

Jim Furtado Posted: January 09, 2018 at 10:23 AM | 7 comment(s)
  Beats: cubs, pay site, scouting

Wednesday, December 20, 2017

Cubs slugger Kyle Schwarber has lost 20 pounds in mission to transform his body and game

Want to know why the Cubs aren’t trading Schwarber?

Jim Furtado Posted: December 20, 2017 at 08:23 AM | 101 comment(s)
  Beats: cubs, kyle schwarber

Saturday, December 16, 2017

Chatwood Initial Deal with Cubs Violated Rules – Inside the Seams

Former Rockies right-hander Tyler Chatwood agreed to a three-year, $38 million free-agent contract with the Cubs. Nothing wrong with that. The deal, however, included a clause that if he received one Cy Young vote — even for fifth place — his 2019 salary would be increased $2 million, and if he received one vote in 2018 and one vote in 2019 he would receive a $4 million raise in his salary for 2019. One problem — that clause was illegal, and if anybody should have known the Cubs should have. The initial ban on such clauses was put in place when the Red Sox included a clause in Curt Schilling’s 2008 contract providing a $1 million bonus if he received a Cy Young vote. Theo Epstein and Jed Hoyer, the top two men on the baseball side of the Cubs, were the top men in the Red Sox front office in 2008.

Jim Furtado Posted: December 16, 2017 at 01:04 PM | 22 comment(s)
  Beats: cubs, tyler chatwood

Wednesday, December 13, 2017


TELANDER: Conflict-of-interest issue in contract was award-winning | Chicago Sun-Times

Voters should take voting seriously. At some point, though, they can take themselves a little too seriously.

And Gordon Wittenmyer, our longtime Cubs beat writer, likes the voting but hates it when “the industry itself attaches itself to it.’’ Remember that, Theo. “Our integrity and our credibility are our brand. The appearance of conflict of interest is conflict of interest.’’

Case closed.

Jim Furtado Posted: December 13, 2017 at 06:38 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: cubs, tyler chatwood

Tuesday, December 12, 2017


Wednesday, December 06, 2017

Yankees would be wise to acquire Kyle Schwarber to fill DH role - NY Daily News

Wishcasting.

So how about Dellin Betances and Chance Adams for Schwarber?

Jim Furtado Posted: December 06, 2017 at 08:24 AM | 44 comment(s)
  Beats: cubs, yankees

Friday, December 01, 2017

Bryce Harper is hanging with Kris Bryant at a Vegas Golden Knights game, so feel free to speculate wildly

Harper, scheduled for free agency after the upcoming 2018 season, is batting 1.000 when it comes to getting fans to read into each and every move he makes, hoping that everything he does has some sort of hidden clue about where he wants to sign his next gargantuan contract.

And of course Cubs fans are hoping it all means he’s coming to the North Side.

His most recent activity? Hanging with Cubs third baseman Kris Bryant at Tuesday night’s Vegas Golden Knights game.

I’m starting to think the Cubs have a chance of signing him. If they’re interested, of course.

Greg Pope Posted: December 01, 2017 at 10:35 AM | 38 comment(s)
  Beats: bryce harper, cubs, hockey, kris bryant

Monday, November 13, 2017

Fanrag: Alex Cobb Destinations

Gotsulias can tie him to three clubs.

Plenty of teams need a solid starter but won’t break the bank — Cobb fits the bill. He’s also younger than some of the other more expensive free agents such as Yu Darvish and Jake Arietta, which makes him an attractive target. MLB Trade Rumors sees Cobb getting a four-year deal worth $48M.

fra paolo Posted: November 13, 2017 at 11:42 AM | 31 comment(s)
  Beats: cubs, hot stove, rangers, rays, twins

Wednesday, November 08, 2017

Offseason Outlook: Chicago Cubs - MLB Trade Rumors

I can’t see Otani fitting into a NL club. If his goal is to remain a two-way player, it will be much easier for an AL team to get him ABs.

The ideal candidate for the Cubs’ rotation, of course, is 23-year-old righty Shohei Otani.  If MLB, the players’ union, Nippon Professional Baseball, and the Nippon Ham Fighters are able to reach an agreement, Otani may make the leap to MLB despite being subject to international bonus pool restrictions.  While Cubs fans are surely dreaming of Otani pitching every fifth day and patrolling the Wrigley outfield on some of his off days, the Cubs are one of a dozen teams capped at $300K in the potential bidding.  Many other teams are able to bid more than ten times as much (the theoretical maximum is about $10MM), although Otani would be leaving hundreds of millions of dollars on the table either way.  Like every team, the Cubs will have to do a hell of a marketing job to win Otani’s heart if he’s posted, and they can’t build their offseason around him to any degree.

Jim Furtado Posted: November 08, 2017 at 08:28 AM | 9 comment(s)
  Beats: cubs

Saturday, November 04, 2017

New York mayor calls Cubs owner ‘a coward’ over closing news site DNAinfo, but Emanuel won’t go there

The owner of the Cubs shut down two of his news outlets because his employees unionized. Makes me wonder what he thinks of his players.

Joyful Calculus Instructor Posted: November 04, 2017 at 01:03 AM | 31 comment(s)
  Beats: cubs

Sunday, October 29, 2017

WaPo: Dave Martinez to Manage Nationals

The Washington Nationals have agreed to a deal with former Cubs bench coach Davey Martinez to become their next manager, and are finalizing the details of what will be a three-year deal with an option for a fourth, according to a person familiar with the situation….

Martinez gives the Nationals a different look — a fresher face than Baker or Davey Johnson, but a more relaxed leader than Williams. He is fluent in Spanish, well-versed in advanced analytics and multiple Nationals players have spoken highly of him.

fra paolo Posted: October 29, 2017 at 11:57 AM | 23 comment(s)
  Beats: cubs, managers, nationals, rays

Wednesday, October 25, 2017

Cubs need to get their pitching in order or else this entire foundation could crumble | NBC Sports Chicago

“You don’t want to make a living or make a habit out of trying to solve your problems with high-priced pitching free agents,” Epstein said, “because over the long run, there’s just so much risk involved. It can really hamstring your organization.

“But we have a lot of players who have reasonable salaries who contribute an awful lot that might put us in a position to consider it going forward in the future.

“So I wouldn’t rule it out completely, and I wouldn’t rule it in. I would just say it’s not our preferred method. We prefer to make a small deal and find Jake Arrieta, but you can’t do that every year, either. That’s tough.”

Jim Furtado Posted: October 25, 2017 at 08:30 AM | 6 comment(s)
  Beats: cubs

Saturday, October 21, 2017

Cubs Fire Bosio

@BNightengale


The #Cubs have fired respected pitching coach Chris Bosio, and now could reach out to Jim Hickey,who’s a top candidate for #STLCards opening

I don’t know if firing a pitching coach is worth a posting here, but Bosio seems to get credit for Arrieta and Hendricks. Those are some pretty big feathers in his cap.

 

Greg Pope Posted: October 21, 2017 at 01:22 PM | 32 comment(s)
  Beats: chris bosio, cubs, joe maddon

Friday, October 20, 2017

Theo Epstein: Joe Maddon has taken enough heat, don’t blame NLCS on Cubs manager | NBC Sports Chicago

“It’s not manager against manager,” Epstein said. “That stuff just gets under the microscope so much this time of year. It’s players performing. And when you get a lead in the series – and when you’ve got a bunch of relievers throwing well – you can make tactically aggressive decisions. Your strategies tend to work.

“When you’re in a tough spot late in the game – and you’re searching for consistency in the ‘pen – it just puts all managers in tough spots.”

Jim Furtado Posted: October 20, 2017 at 02:46 PM | 31 comment(s)
  Beats: cubs

Dusty Baker Will Not Be Back as Manager

The Nationals on Friday announced that Dusty Baker would not return as the team’s manager in 2018. Baker this past season led the Nationals to 97 wins a second-straight NL East title. However, the team once again failed to advance past the division series in the playoffs. In two seasons on the job in Washington, the Nationals on Baker’s watch posted a winning percentage of .593.
Baker’s now managed for 22 seasons, and over that span his teams have gone 1,863-1,636. Those 1,863 wins rank 14th all-time, and Baker’s also led four different teams to the playoffs. As well, he’s been named NL Manager of the Year three times. It’s possible, though, that his never winning a World Series will keep him out of the Hall of Fame. At age 68, Baker may also have managed his last big-league game.

Not fired, just simply let him go at the end of his contract. That seems really rare to me, but it’s the third time out of his four stints where the team has simply let him go at the end of his contract.

Greg Pope Posted: October 20, 2017 at 01:59 PM | 88 comment(s)
  Beats: cubs, dusty baker, giants, nationals, reds

Must C: Hernandez’s trio of HRs | MLB.com

Jim Furtado Posted: October 20, 2017 at 09:47 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: cubs, dodgers, kiki hernandez, playoffs

Dodgers crush Cubs in Game 5 to advance to the World Series for first time since 1988 | LA Times

On a night when a 28-season drought ended, Kershaw reaped the benefits of an offensive bounty. Enrique Hernandez supplied a trio of home runs, including a grand slam in the third inning that transformed Wrigley Field into a tomb and a two-run blast in the ninth that turned the Dodgers dugout into a mosh pit. The Dodgers led by seven runs after three innings and by nine midway through four. Kershaw responded to the largess with six innings of one-run baseball. He will be ready to start Game 1 of the World Series on Tuesday at Dodger Stadium.

LA Podcasting Hombre of Anaheim Posted: October 20, 2017 at 01:07 AM | 51 comment(s)
  Beats: cubs, dodgers, world series

Thursday, October 19, 2017

Cubs hold off Dodgers in Game 4 of NLCS | MLB.com

These 9 PM East Coast starts are a killer. I fell asleep around the third inning. It looks like I missed a good game.

Jim Furtado Posted: October 19, 2017 at 06:59 AM | 35 comment(s)
  Beats: cubs, dodgers, playoffs

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

How the mob, politics, a burlesque dancer and The Babe shaped the ‘32 World Series

There’s a story here. This building used to be the Sheffield House Hotel, and before that it was the Hotel Carlos, as the baroque carvings on the entryway still announce. All of that, though, was before a reported 53 code violations ended the building’s days as a single-room occupancy hotel. It’s now luxury condos.
Back in the 1930s, the Hotel Carlos was a popular choice for Cubs players seeking a place to live during the season. Shortstop Billy Jurges, who toiled for the Cubs from 1931 through 1938 before being traded to the Giants, was one of those players. He lived in room 509. Jurges’ girlfriend, Violet Popovich, also lived in the Hotel Carlos. On July 6, 1932, not long after Jurges broke things off, she wrote the following note:

A fun read from Dayn.

Meatwad Posted: October 18, 2017 at 06:59 PM | 5 comment(s)
  Beats: babe ruth, corruption, cubs, wrigley field, yankees

Do the Cubs realize how badly the Dodgers insulted them on national TV? - Chicago Tribune

It’s not the end of Snarktober, but you can see it from here:

Do the Cubs know enough to be insulted by what the Dodgers pulled in Game 3 of the National League Championship Series?

Do the Cubs know they got pantsed on their home field on national TV?

Do the Cubs realize the Dodgers have so little respect for their offense that starting pitcher Yu Darvish batted with the bases loaded in the sixth inning of a two-run game?

The Cubs certainly didn’t respond as if they knew they were insulted. They didn’t respond, really, after the first inning. They didn’t respond the way the Dodgers did.

Jim Furtado Posted: October 18, 2017 at 11:48 AM | 37 comment(s)
  Beats: cubs, dodgers

Dodgers Dugout: Andre Ethier is there when the Dodgers need him - LA Times

He does?

—TBS analyst Ron Darling seems to have an intense dislike of the Dodgers. I wonder why? Maybe someone still remembers Game 7 of the 1988 NLCS? The mighty New York Mets were favored to slaughter the Dodgers. But what happened in Game 7. Oh, yeah, the Dodgers won. Who was the losing pitcher…. Let me check ….. Oh yeah, it was Ron Darling.

Jim Furtado Posted: October 18, 2017 at 11:46 AM | 3 comment(s)
  Beats: cubs, dodgers


Tuesday, October 17, 2017

The Cubs could really use 2016 Javier Baez right about now - Chicago Cubs Blog- ESPN

Will Almora’s play push Kyle Schwarber out of Chicago? Schwarber really should be a part-time catcher/full-time DH.

“You’re not going to be perfect,” teammate Albert Almora Jr. said. “You’re going to have your week or two that you’re not feeling at your best. I know I went through it. The way he’s handling it, he’s not bringing anybody down. On the contrary, I actually saw—one of the first guys I saw when I looked into the dugout when I hit the home run [in Game 1] was him cheering.”

Jim Furtado Posted: October 17, 2017 at 08:47 AM | 42 comment(s)
  Beats: cubs, dodgers, playoffs

Monday, October 16, 2017

Joe Maddon calls John Lackey, not Wade Davis | MLB.com

He’ll be well rested for game 3.

“I really just needed him for the save tonight,” Maddon said. “He had limited pitches. It was one inning only, and in these circumstances, you don’t get him up and then don’t get him in. So if we had caught the lead, he would have pitched. That’s it.”

Jim Furtado Posted: October 16, 2017 at 10:46 AM | 64 comment(s)
  Beats: cubs, joe maddon

Page {e2c518d61874f2d4a14bbfb9087a7c2dcurrent_page} of {e2c518d61874f2d4a14bbfb9087a7c2dtotal_pages} pages {e2c518d61874f2d4a14bbfb9087a7c2dpagination_links} | Site Archive

 

 

News

All News | Prime News

Old-School Newsstand


BBTF Partner

Support BBTF

donate

Thanks to
robneyer
for his generous support.

Bookmarks

You must be logged in to view your Bookmarks.

Hot Topics

NewsblogHere's why baseball's economic system might be broken
(7 - 8:27pm, Jan 16)
Last: Walt Davis

NewsblogOT - 2017 NFL thread
(1301 - 8:22pm, Jan 16)
Last: ERROR---Jolly Old St. Nick

NewsblogRyan Thibs has his HOF Ballot Tracker Up and Running!
(1429 - 8:21pm, Jan 16)
Last: The Yankee Clapper

NewsblogOTP 15 January 2018:Mississippi's anti-gay marriage law is hurting two college baseball teams
(474 - 8:11pm, Jan 16)
Last: David Nieporent (now, with children)

NewsblogOT - NBA 2017-2018 Tip-off Thread
(2642 - 8:09pm, Jan 16)
Last: JJ1986

NewsblogAre Teams “Buying the Dip” in the Relief Market? | FanGraphs Baseball
(1 - 8:08pm, Jan 16)
Last: Walt Davis

NewsblogAndruw of Center Field
(120 - 8:04pm, Jan 16)
Last: QLE

NewsblogMolina plans to retire at the end of his three-year extension | Cardinal Beat | stltoday.com
(40 - 8:01pm, Jan 16)
Last: cardsfanboy

NewsblogHeyman | Yankees Having Trouble Finding Taker For Ellsbury
(131 - 6:52pm, Jan 16)
Last: Lassus

NewsblogPirates, Giants agree to McCutchen trade
(87 - 6:51pm, Jan 16)
Last: the Hugh Jorgan returns

NewsblogHall of Fame umpire Doug Harvey dies at 87
(1 - 6:47pm, Jan 16)
Last: Steve Balboni's Personal Trainer

NewsblogPrimer Dugout (and link of the day) 1-16-2018
(6 - 6:39pm, Jan 16)
Last: Batman

Newsblog2018 Top 10 Right-handed pitching prospects
(6 - 5:12pm, Jan 16)
Last: bfan

Hall of MeritRoy Halladay
(6 - 5:09pm, Jan 16)
Last: cookiedabookie

Hall of MeritRoy Oswalt
(6 - 5:02pm, Jan 16)
Last: cookiedabookie

Page rendered in 1.8148 seconds
167 querie(s) executed