Baseball for the Thinking Fan

Login | Register | Feedback

btf_logo
You are here > Home > Baseball Newsstand > Baseball Primer Newsblog > Discussion
Baseball Primer Newsblog
— The Best News Links from the Baseball Newsstand

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Jazayerli: Hitting Wins Championships: Why the Chicago Cubs’ Inverted Rebuilding Strategy Is Starting to Look Brilliant (Grantland)

I don’t simply mean that the Cubs are rebuilding with complete conviction; under the terms of MLB’s collective bargaining agreement, that’s really the only way to go.1 Nor do I mean that the Cubs are nearly the extremists that the Houston Astros are. I’m referring instead to the core principle with which the Cubs have been trying to build a championship roster since team president Theo Epstein and general manager Jed Hoyer were hired after the 2011 season, a principle that distinguishes this rebuilding project from almost every other one in baseball history: They’re building an offense from within and a pitching staff from spare parts.

This flies in the face of more than a century of conventional baseball wisdom, which states that (1) pitching wins championships, and (2) a team can never have too much pitching. The Cubs’ approach is completely counterintuitive. It’s also completely right.

Dock Ellis on Acid Posted: August 12, 2014 at 07:48 PM | 75 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: cubs, grantland, rany jazayerli, theo epstein

Reader Comments and Retorts

Go to end of page

Statements posted here are those of our readers and do not represent the BaseballThinkFactory. Names are provided by the poster and are not verified. We ask that posters follow our submission policy. Please report any inappropriate comments.

   1. Cargo Cultist Posted: August 12, 2014 at 11:24 PM (#4769919)
The Cubs will be in the playoffs soon. They might even break the curse!
   2. Walks Clog Up the Bases Posted: August 12, 2014 at 11:38 PM (#4769924)
Look, there's a long way to go and still plenty that could go wrong. Still, it's exciting that we're finally seeing some payoffs from the nearly three years of wretched baseball on the North Side. Right now, it's looking like it's not unreasonable to think they're very close to having an offensive core capable of stacking up against most playoff-caliber teams.
   3. Robert in Manhattan Beach Posted: August 12, 2014 at 11:45 PM (#4769926)
a principle that distinguishes this rebuilding project from almost every other one in baseball history: They’re building an offense from within and a pitching staff from spare parts.

Or what the Indians did when they spit out Belle, Ramirez, Thome, Baerga etc., made a pitching staff out of Chuck Nagy and duct tape and killed everybody. It's really not at all unconventional. I guess Rany thought he needed a hook.
   4. RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: August 13, 2014 at 12:09 AM (#4769932)
These young hitters might even be as good as Wil Myers, Mike Moustakas, Eric Hosmer, and Christian Colon!
   5. billyshears Posted: August 13, 2014 at 12:10 AM (#4769933)
So, in summary: The Cubs rebuilding philosophy is brilliant because, by utilizing DIPS theory, the Cubs have been able to identify pitchers who happen to end up pitching better than DIPS theory would predict.
   6. Crispix reaches boiling point with lackluster play Posted: August 13, 2014 at 12:27 AM (#4769936)
By utilizing necromancy, the Cubs have been able to identify pitchers who will pitch great for the Cubs and then crumble to dust as soon as the Cubs trade them for prospects.
   7. PreservedFish Posted: August 13, 2014 at 12:32 AM (#4769938)
The DIPS part of the argument is a little weak, but I would like to know if Epstein did in fact make a conscious decision to pretty much only care about hitters.

In 2014, 2013 and 2012, their #2 pick was a pitcher. In 2012 Almora was followed by 7 pitchers in a row. In 2013 it was hitter-pitcher-hitter-pitcher-pitcher-pitcher-pitcher-pitcher.

Usually I think that GMs just try to make good moves and that we fail in our attempts to divine a consistent philosophy guiding those moves.
   8. Walt Davis Posted: August 13, 2014 at 01:10 AM (#4769943)
In related news, Baez is up to 37 PA without a walk.

Great offense, patched together rotation, killer bullpen was also a very winning formula for the Big Red Machine.
   9. Select Storage Device Posted: August 13, 2014 at 01:15 AM (#4769944)
One of the things that makes it such a joy to watch the Chicago Cubs’ rebuilding plan unfold is that the team’s approach is completely transparent.


I'd ask actual Cub's fans how joyful it has been.

There’s no trickery here, no deceit, no super-secret process that’s inscrutable to everyone outside of the front office.


Except for the owner's financial situation.

I don’t simply mean that the Cubs are rebuilding with complete conviction; under the terms of MLB’s collective bargaining agreement, that’s really the only way to go. (1) Nor do I mean that the Cubs are nearly the extremists that the Houston Astros are.


The Cubs publicly took every advantage they could before the new CBA took effect, as well they should have. They have made nice trades. They haven't found any secret formula under the new rules.

They’re building an offense from within and a pitching staff from spare parts.


They are min/max'ing. WoW guilds are golf clapping.

This flies in the face of more than a century of conventional baseball wisdom, which states that (1) pitching wins championships, and (2) a team can never have too much pitching.


Except in the very recent years when this wasn't the case.

What the hell happened to Rany?

The Cubs’ approach is completely counterintuitive.


No.

It’s also completely right.


It's fine.

The core of this mess is that somehow it's unheard of to treat your offense like before all else and not win with it. This... can't be at all unconventional.
   10. Cabbage Posted: August 13, 2014 at 01:23 AM (#4769945)
Years ago -- 2004 or something. I remember Tango posting after someone asked him what he'd do if he was named GM of [whatever team was terrible that year]. His response was basically, premium hitters over pitchers; arms in bulk. And draft HS for three years then college for two years. At the end of the day you'll have the 1980 Edmonton Oilers.

Tango, on the off chance he shows up here and hasn't already finished his second manhattan, can clarify.
   11. Select Storage Device Posted: August 13, 2014 at 01:41 AM (#4769948)
It may be true that it’s difficult to reach the playoffs without an elite pitching staff. (It’s equally hard to reach the playoffs without an elite offense, but never mind.)


So... I don't really need to be here, right now, do I?

It may even be true that good pitching beats good hitting in the playoffs, although the evidence to support that is surprisingly sketchy. But the sport’s pitching obsession has one fatal flaw: Pitchers aren’t reliable.


Hello darkness my old friend...

In 2013, when the Cubs had the no. 2 overall pick, the industry consensus was that the two best players available were Mark Appel and Jonathan Gray, both college pitchers. It’s hard to believe now, but the Cubs’ decision to pick Bryant raised some eyebrows at the time.


SUPER CRAZY TO BELIEVE! Fine. But this is still horsey-poo narrative.

The Cubs wagered on the side of history, which has shown that truly elite collegiate hitters — the kind you see once a year in the draft, if that — almost always turn into at least average major league players, usually becoming stars. And sure enough, Bryant has put up video-game numbers all season...


I've come to talk to you again...

In the 2014 draft, the Cubs picked fourth, and the first three picks were all pitchers. So the Cubs once again


Zigged! They definitely zigged.

zagged


Foiled!

   12. Walt Davis Posted: August 13, 2014 at 03:19 AM (#4769955)
At the end of the day you'll have the 1980 Edmonton Oilers.

Fewer HRs than even the Royals!!

But at their peak around 83-86, they were scoring up to 5.5 goals a game. In 80 games that year, they've outscored 4 ML teams in about 115+ games this year.

On the other hand, I believe a small portion of their success is that Canuckian for Trout is Gretzky.
   13. Walt Davis Posted: August 13, 2014 at 03:42 AM (#4769957)
which has shown that truly elite collegiate hitters — the kind you see once a year in the draft, if that — almost always turn into at least average major league players

Is this true? (serious question) How do we recognize/define the "truly elite" ones before they've become at least average ML players?

First college hitter drafted:

2014: Schwarber, Cubs: Tore up A- and A, struggling a bit at A+ (244/393/378 ... all those walks at A+ is a bit odd)
2013: Bryant, Cubs: no complaints
2012: Zunino, Ms: Already in the majors (23 is reasonably young for a C too), putting up a 99 OPS+ this year
2011: Rendon, Nats: All the way down at #6, so far so good
2010: Christian Colon, Royals: Not so good. Already 25, just had a cup of coffee. Was top 100 pre-2011, not since.
2009: Ackley, Ms: OK, more roller-coaster-y than you'd like.
2008: Alvarez, Pitt: Took him a while but solid the last 3 seasons
2007: Wieters, Os: Rewrote all the record books, has announced plans to rewrite them all again, this time in Esperanto!
2006: Longoria, TB: Shoulda taken a finance class or two while he was there
2005: AG#1F#1F: Took a while but ...

More than sufficient truthiness that I'll give Rany a tickmark. Somebody else can check to see how this compares to "top C pitcher", "top HS pitcher" and "top HS hitter" (will want an older timeframe to adjust for age differences on the last two.)

Interestingly though, Longoria is the closest to a great hitter in that bunch (132 career OPS+). The value of the top guys is maybe as much defensive ability as offensive, even if that defensive ability is simply to be competent at 2B, 3B, C. (And some are well more than competent)
   14. Walt Davis Posted: August 13, 2014 at 04:02 AM (#4769958)
Oh, some time to kill so I'll do the easy bit. 1st C pitch, 1st HS hit, 1st HS pitch, fill in your own comments and somebody go back earlier for more HSers:

2005: Romero, J Upton, Volstad (it was a monumentally bad 1st round for pitchers, only 5 of first 16 picks, Romero not until #6)
2006: Hochevar, Rowell, Kershaw (don't blame the Royals, none of the pitchers immediately after Hochevar have done much either and 5 pitchers drafted before Kershaw)
2007: Price, Moose Tacos, Jarrod Parker (Bumgarner right after Parker)
2008: Matusz, T Beckham, Ethan Martin
2009: Strasburg, D Tate, Hobgood (Wheeler right after Hobgood)
2010: Pomeranz, Harper/Machado, K Whitson
2011: Cole, Starling, Bundy
2012: Gasman, Correa, Fried
2013: Appel, Frazier, Stewart
2014: Rodon, Gordon, Aiken

Price, Strasburg, Cole plus whatever any of the others turn into is pretty good return for 1st college pitcher but not as good as 1st college hitter it doesn't seem. Oh yeah, I forget that Ricky Romero was quite good for a while -- 12 WAR doesn't suck as a return.

Upton and Harper (or Machado if you want to be technical) suggest 1st HS hitter will return good value in the end and may be better at producing a big hitter. High school pitcher, either pick the next Kershaw or take the second one.
   15. Dr. Vaux Posted: August 13, 2014 at 04:18 AM (#4769959)
Hmmm . . . if your team could draft Price, Strasburg, and Cole in three consecutive drafts or Longoria and any two of the other guys in #13, which would you choose? The college position players turned up fewer busts (relatively speaking) than the college pitchers, but the college pitchers developed into stars more frequently, it seems.
   16. McCoy Posted: August 13, 2014 at 07:36 AM (#4769967)
Oddly enough rany fails to even mention Hendricks who just turned in another fine performance last night.

The cubs might very well be a fun team to watch next year. Either that or a complete disaster.
   17. Harveys Wallbangers Posted: August 13, 2014 at 08:07 AM (#4769972)
do the cubs have the right manager fostering the right atmosphere for young players?

I do not know hence the question
   18. bobm Posted: August 13, 2014 at 08:10 AM (#4769973)
On the other hand, I believe a small portion of their success is that Canuckian for Trout is Gretzky.

Actually, Canuckian for Trout is "Troot" :)
   19. zonk Posted: August 13, 2014 at 08:48 AM (#4769986)
Of course, the FIPs theory takes a hit when you realize that all those bats have some significant defensive shortcomings... Baez is learning 2B, Alcantara looks like he's going to at least be moved to CF until/if Almora pans out, Bryant continues to get positive press at 3B, but was always thought to be ticketed for LF - the same place that Schwarber sounds most likely to end up. If you're expecting pitching reclamations to rise to their FIPs, I'm not so sure the defensive alignment lends itself to that.

Still, I do agree that the offense-first farm strategy has been a good one. The closest to a washout - and he's not really anywhere near that - is Almora in that the power hasn't really come and he's looking increasingly like his future as a big league regular will be predicated on his glove.

It's been a fun month or two - Soler is at least temporarily healthy and mashing at the top minor league level, Bryant looks like a beast, Baez has his holes but looks likely to something like a more power/less speed Soriano, and I like Alcantara's game a lot. It's quickly gotten to the point where the lineup is just flat-out fun to watch and should only get better. By September, it's possible that only C, LF, and 3B will be 'meh' spots in the lineup - and 3B/LF ought to be filled with something exciting soon enough.

The concern is that most of these guys tend to K a lot and few of them seem all that interested in taking walks.
   20. Spahn Insane Posted: August 13, 2014 at 08:50 AM (#4769987)
I would like to know if Epstein did in fact make a conscious decision to pretty much only care about hitters.

In 2014, 2013 and 2012, their #2 pick was a pitcher. In 2012 Almora was followed by 7 pitchers in a row. In 2013 it was hitter-pitcher-hitter-pitcher-pitcher-pitcher-pitcher-pitcher.


I can't know what's in Theo's head, but I don't think there's any inconsistency between that draft record and what Jazayerli's describing. It's true that they're drafting a LOT of pitchers in terms of sheer numbers, but they're drafting FRONTLINE hitters--opting to build a base of pitching talent through quantity rather than top-shelf quality, and hope enough of that pool pans out to create a pitching staff (in combination, of course with the reclamation projects). Their focus on frontline talent remains mostly hitting-based.

EDIT: Coke to Cabbage for #10.
   21. Spahn Insane Posted: August 13, 2014 at 08:51 AM (#4769988)
I'd ask actual Cub's fans how joyful it has been.

It's been a long walk in the desert, but now that the green shoots are starting to sprout, with the promise of more to come? Yeah, it's pretty exciting. That's not to say watching them lose almost 200 games in 2 years was much fun.
   22. Yeaarrgghhhh Posted: August 13, 2014 at 08:52 AM (#4769989)
In a recent discussion on an Orioles forum, some guy was arguing that it was nice that the orioles were winning, but it seemed like they didn't have a clear plan last offseason and don’t have a clear plan for the next few years. He thinks they're just kind of winging it and have gotten lucky, and almost seemed annoyed by the results. Someone else pointed out that the plan every year is to win as many games as possible within the budget set by the owner, and that there are a number of ways to get there. Insisting on a specific plan for the team ("we are going to sign Garza and trade for a LF") could lead to a lot of bad decisions if you’re not open to new opportunities or problems that you didn’t anticipate. (And, yes, the Orioles have gotten a bit lucky, but I think Duquette deserves a lot of credit for building a deep roster filled with useful players.)

Having a plan is nice, but flexibility is key. What's the line about war? "No battle plan survives first contact with the enemy"?

That said, I kind of doubt that Epstein has a very specific plan to build through hitting.

   23. zonk Posted: August 13, 2014 at 08:53 AM (#4769990)
do the cubs have the right manager fostering the right atmosphere for young players?


I think so - coming into this season, the one thing I wanted out of Renteria was to see Rizzo and Castro pull out of their tailspins and they've largely done that (moreso Rizzo than Castro). Olt was a disaster, but then - his swing looks like it has more holes than any right manager can fix. Lake was always a fringey prospect who just got exposed as a full-timer (much less a full-timer in LF). Both Alcantara and Baez are slipping after fast starts - but it's adjustment time and the jury is still out.

   24. Spahn Insane Posted: August 13, 2014 at 08:59 AM (#4769992)
do the cubs have the right manager fostering the right atmosphere for young players?

They don't let me hang out in the clubhouse, but Renteria certainly hasn't hesitated to use the young guys in key roles, both on the mound and in the lineup (not that he's had a lot of alternatives, but at least he hasn't sat Alcantara so Sweeney or Lake or someone can get more playing time), and Rizzo/Castro have both rebounded significantly since his hire. No idea if the latter's due to anything Renteria's done, but it all suggests he's at least not been a negative. He seems like a pretty positive guy generally, which one would assume is a good thing for young players.
   25. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: August 13, 2014 at 09:27 AM (#4770007)
They’re building an offense from within and a pitching staff from spare parts.

This flies in the face of more than a century of conventional baseball wisdom, which states that (1) pitching wins championships, and (2) a team can never have too much pitching. The Cubs’ approach is completely counterintuitive. It’s also completely right.


Didn't San Francisco just win two World Series with a home grown pitching staff and an offense built from spare parts?
   26. Shooty Is Disappointed With His Midstream Urine Posted: August 13, 2014 at 09:28 AM (#4770008)
There's no single way to build a winner and the Cubs plan to stock up on a lot of good young players isn't exactly revolutionary. I'm not sure why Rany is pushing this particular line of thought, to be honest, except everyone wants to jump onto the next Moneyball before anyone else does.
   27. AROM Posted: August 13, 2014 at 09:38 AM (#4770017)
Or what the Indians did when they spit out Belle, Ramirez, Thome, Baerga etc., made a pitching staff out of Chuck Nagy and duct tape and killed everybody. It's really not at all unconventional.


Sounds a bit like the Angel team that emerged as a contender in 1995 and won the series in 2002. The farm system was especially good at producing outfielders - Salmon, Anderson, Edmonds, Erstad - and one infielder in Glaus. They didn't have much success producing the middle infield, had to trade Edmonds to bring in Kennedy, and got lucky with a waiver claim on Eckstein.

The rotation in 2002 consisted of mid rotation guys having career years (Washburn, Ortiz), a couple of old guys on their last legs (Appier, Sele), a rookie who turned out pretty good in Lackey, and Mickey Callaway coming out of nowhere.

Cubs have a lot more in the infield, less in the outfield. Not a bad situation, since it's a lot easier to turn an infielder into an outfielder than vice versa. And with Bryant, the Cubs have their very own Troy Glaus clone.
   28. Scott Lange Posted: August 13, 2014 at 09:58 AM (#4770037)
I'd ask actual Cub's fans how joyful it has been.


I'm a Cubs fan, and I've felt good about the state and direction of things throughout the Theo/Jed era. At the moment, I'm basically giddy with visions of a lineup of eight all-stars and an above average pitching staff. Obviously things probably won't pan out quite that perfectly, but its very easy to imagine it, and a new piece of the puzzle arrives at Wrigley seemingly every other week. So, for my money, its been joyful, with promise of much more joy to come.

The cubs might very well be a fun team to watch next year. Either that or a complete disaster.


Hey McCoy, I've noticed you stopped giving day-by-day updates on Castro's numbers in every Cubs-related thread. Did you lose interest because he's been hitting well again?
   29. Spahn Insane Posted: August 13, 2014 at 10:16 AM (#4770055)
Oddly enough rany fails to even mention Hendricks who just turned in another fine performance last night.

Yes, my Hendricks mancrush continues apace. That was the first time I've seen him pitch in person.
   30. Spahn Insane Posted: August 13, 2014 at 10:21 AM (#4770059)
The closest to a washout - and he's not really anywhere near that - is Almora in that the power hasn't really come and he's looking increasingly like his future as a big league regular will be predicated on his glove.

He's 20, and his ISO's .125, spread over 2 levels. That doesn't seem hopeless in the power department to me, especially since it was mostly in the Florida State League.

Edit: Your "and he's not really anywhere near that" is acknowledged; I don't mean to say you think Almora's hopeless. I doubt he's destined to be a bigtime power hitter, but I think he could end up with good line-drive power.
   31. Charles S. will not yield to this monkey court Posted: August 13, 2014 at 10:54 AM (#4770085)
What's the line about war? "No battle plan survives first contact with the enemy"?


Or as Mike Tyson said, "Everybody's got a plan...until they get hit."
   32. Charles S. will not yield to this monkey court Posted: August 13, 2014 at 11:04 AM (#4770096)
I like the recent reclamation pickups for the pitching staff. If you go into ST next year with a top FA pitcher (Lester/Scherzer/Shields) followed by Arrieta and Hendricks, you should certainly be able to cobble together a back-end plus injury protection from:

EJax
Wood
Wada
Doubrant
Turner
Straily
Grimm (I really think they should make him back into a starter)

They've certainly got the money for one of those three top guys, and I think they're close enough now that FAs will think this is about to be a winning situation.
   33. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: August 13, 2014 at 11:49 AM (#4770131)
I like the recent reclamation pickups for the pitching staff. If you go into ST next year with a top FA pitcher (Lester/Scherzer/Shields) followed by Arrieta and Hendricks, you should certainly be able to cobble together a back-end plus injury protection from:

EJax
Wood
Wada
Doubrant
Turner
Straily
Grimm (I really think they should make him back into a starter)

They've certainly got the money for one of those three top guys, and I think they're close enough now that FAs will think this is about to be a winning situation.


Concur. It's going to be interesting.

There's going to be a lot of teams going after those top-3.

At minimum you have to think the Yankees, Dodgers, Red Sox, Angels and Cubs are going to be looking to add a top SP. Throw in a few other teams (Seattle?, SF?, Texas?) and this bidding could get crazy.
   34. Misirlou was a Buddhist prodigy Posted: August 13, 2014 at 12:17 PM (#4770155)
At minimum you have to think the Yankees, Dodgers, Red Sox, Angels and Cubs are going to be looking to add a top SP. Throw in a few other teams (Seattle?, SF?, Texas?) and this bidding could get crazy.


The Cubs have a grand total of $22.5 mil committed to 4 players next year: Castro, Rizzo, Jackson (Ugh!), and Sweeney. Best case they fill 2B, 3B, CF, and RF at league minimum. That's only another 2 mil. Castillo is arb eligible, and they have to fill LF. But still, that's a starting 8 plus 1 pitcher (Ugh!) for ~ $30 mil. Under normal circumstances, a Chicago team should be able to get all 3 if they wanted. They absolutely should get one, and even with Ricketts's money problems, they should be able to afford 2.
   35. zonk Posted: August 13, 2014 at 12:34 PM (#4770165)
I think the key to next year's staff is constructing an elaborate ruse to convince Ejax that he got traded somewhere else over the offseason and then reacquired some time in spring training.

I have to think for a mere $500K or so -- we could do some fake press releases announcing that MLB has expanded, have a fake press conference with fake reporters, create fake uniforms, rent a fake spring training site, pay a few minor leaguers to pretend they're the Montreal Expos, then have another series of fake press releases and news conferences announcing he's been traded back to Chicago.
   36. Norcan Posted: August 13, 2014 at 01:38 PM (#4770222)
I don't buy that Theo and Jed have exclusively targeted hitters in the first round out of some team building philosophy. I think it's just worked out that they've liked a position player better than any of the available pitchers. Going by rumors, which is of course dicey, they apparently preferred Appel over Bryant and would've taken Aiken or Rodon had they fallen to them in the most recent draft.

It's only been three drafts but in two of them, their possible selection has been affected by Tommy John surgeries for two highly rated pitchers. In 2012, if Giolito hadn't been hurt, he would've been one of the top two pitchers taken, which might have made Gausman or Zimmer available. In this last draft, the elbow injury knocked Hoffmann out of top-4 consideration.
   37. Jesse Barfield's Right Arm Posted: August 13, 2014 at 01:44 PM (#4770231)
The Cub's plan is what I've been doing for (note: nobody cares!) the last few years in fantasy baseball. Draft proven MLB hitters and assume I can find good pitching mid-season by looking at high k-rates from guys (hello Colin McHugh!). You get way more fluctuation with pitchers it seems, at least in (nobody cares!) fantasy baseball.

The obvious problem with the article is that no one is 'right' and nothing is 'brilliant' at this point. It's like listening to the Sixers kool-aid drinkers talk about how awesome the Noel/Embid/Saric teams will be.
   38. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: August 13, 2014 at 01:45 PM (#4770232)
The Cubs have a grand total of $22.5 mil committed to 4 players next year: Castro, Rizzo, Jackson (Ugh!), and Sweeney. Best case they fill 2B, 3B, CF, and RF at league minimum. That's only another 2 mil. Castillo is arb eligible, and they have to fill LF. But still, that's a starting 8 plus 1 pitcher (Ugh!) for ~ $30 mil. Under normal circumstances, a Chicago team should be able to get all 3 if they wanted. They absolutely should get one, and even with Ricketts's money problems, they should be able to afford 2.

I don't see how that matters. The other 4 teams I mentioned have effectively unlimited resources.

Sure, the Cub could get 2 of those pitchers, if they're handing out 8/225 contracts, but are they going to want to do that?

The Ricketts seem waaaaaay cheaper than the other ownership groups involved.
   39. GregD Posted: August 13, 2014 at 01:48 PM (#4770235)
If the Dodgers, Yankees, Angels all got heavily involved on the same guy, it would be a bidding war for the ages, right? I am operating on the guess that the Dodgers will win a bidding war since it's hard to see any sign that they think about things like a budget cap or an ideal budget or anything like that.
   40. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: August 13, 2014 at 01:56 PM (#4770248)
If the Dodgers, Yankees, Angels all got heavily involved on the same guy, it would be a bidding war for the ages, right? I am operating on the guess that the Dodgers will win a bidding war since it's hard to see any sign that they think about things like a budget cap or an ideal budget or anything like that.

I think Shields, Scherzer and Lester are all getting mind-boggling deals.

I'd say it's 50:50 someone tops Kershaw's deal (7/215) in total $.
   41. The District Attorney Posted: August 13, 2014 at 01:57 PM (#4770249)
I'm not sure why Rany is pushing this particular line of thought, to be honest, except everyone wants to jump onto the next Moneyball before anyone else does.
Well, the Cubs did offer him a pretty good job. :)

Not that that's the reason he's writing that the Cubs' rebuilding plan is coming along well. I think he legitimately believes that, and I think most of us, including myself, do also. Still, I'm pretty tired of the turn-of-the-century trend where certain GMs are the stathead guys and everything they do is right, whereas other GMs are the stathead enemies and everything they do is wrong. Everyone (not located in Arizona or eastern Pennsylvania) is the stathead guys now. I don't feel a need to make sure the world understands that Theo Epstein is "our guy", or to coronate a specific GM as the smartest of the smart.
   42. PreservedFish Posted: August 13, 2014 at 01:59 PM (#4770253)
Still, I'm pretty tired of the turn-of-the-century trend where certain GMs are the stathead guys and everything they do is right, whereas other GMs are the stathead enemies and everything they do is wrong.


I agree with this, but I think the bigger thing happening here is just a journalist trying to make his story sound more important than it really is.
   43. madvillain Posted: August 13, 2014 at 02:12 PM (#4770267)
The obvious problem with the article is that no one is 'right' and nothing is 'brilliant' at this point. It's like listening to the Sixers kool-aid drinkers talk about how awesome the Noel/Embid/Saric teams will be.


Yea the Cubs would do very well to make the playoffs a few times over the next decade and maybe even make a WS. Until then this plan isn't brilliant or "the new Moneyball" it's just a plan. We'll see what happens when the inevitable setbacks happens to some of the youngsters. If Byrant starts next year and is hitting 220/280/380 in June will the plan still be brilliant? Progress isn't linear and patience would be recommended.

I agree with this, but I think the bigger thing happening here is just a journalist trying to make his story sound more important than it really is.


ESPN's little partners like Grantland and 538 are really killing it lately. 538 is tackling the tough issue of sunscreen.
   44. Misirlou was a Buddhist prodigy Posted: August 13, 2014 at 02:18 PM (#4770273)
I don't see how that matters. The other 4 teams I mentioned have effectively unlimited resources.

Sure, the Cub could get 2 of those pitchers, if they're handing out 8/225 contracts, but are they going to want to do that?

The Ricketts seem waaaaaay cheaper than the other ownership groups involved.


The point is, the Cubs can put together a cromulent team, minus 2 starting pitchers, for under $50 mil. That gives them an incredible leg up. The Dodgers have $172 mil committed, and that still doesn't buy them a 2B, SS, C, a couple of bullpen arms, and 2 starters. Are the dodgers more likely to go over $200 million than the Cubs are to go over $100?

The Yankees have $166 million committed to just 10 players next year. They need to find a SS, SP, and entire bullpen just to get to the 2 SP short of an entire team that the Cubs will be looking at with a <$50 mil payroll.

The Angels are on the hook for $120 mil next year and that buys them 9 players, and in 2016 that goes up to 126 mil for 7 players.

Castro and Rizzo are signed for the next 5 years at no more than $11 mil per. Baez, Bryant, Alcantara, and Soler are under team control for 6 more years. That is incredible cost certainty, one that comes along only very rarely. Due to this unique situation, Rickets can be way cheaper than those other teams, and still outbid them.

And I was wrong about Soler. He won't be making the league min next year. He'll make $2 mil. And he'll be making 4 mil in 2020, his supposed final year of arbitration.
   45. Spahn Insane Posted: August 13, 2014 at 02:20 PM (#4770276)
I think Shields, Scherzer and Lester are all getting mind-boggling deals.

I'd say it's 50:50 someone tops Kershaw's deal (7/215) in total $.


The Cubs may decide they'd rather zero in on a deal for Hamels. Seems like they'd be well-positioned to do that; they've got the surplus prospects to trade, Hamels's yearly salary's a lot less than what the FA pitchers will probably get, and the Phillies desperately need to get younger (not that it's clear that RAJ realizes this...).
   46. madvillain Posted: August 13, 2014 at 02:32 PM (#4770285)
Castro and Rizzo are signed for the next 5 years at no more than $11 mil per. Baez, Bryant, Alcantara, and Soler are under team control for 6 more years. That is incredible cost certainty, one that comes along only very rarely. Due to this unique situation, Rickets can be way cheaper than those other teams, and still outbid them.


How about we wait until half those guys have proven they are cromulent MLB regulars before projecting a massive $/WAR advantage for the Cubs? This is where the plan meets the real world. In the real world top prospects don't always develop and they sure as hell don't develop at the same rate. Now, the Cubs understand that you want both high end prospects and enough depth in the system to where you can easily miss on a few and still have a talented team, but as of now all this talk about the amazing Cubs future is just premature.

Does the future look promising? Sure. But nothing is promised with so many players yet to establish an MLB baseline.
   47. Misirlou was a Buddhist prodigy Posted: August 13, 2014 at 02:42 PM (#4770297)
How about we wait until half those guys have proven they are cromulent MLB regulars before projecting a massive $/WAR advantage for the Cubs?


Sure, I'm not ordering WS tickets yet. Just pointing out how much payroll flexibility they have, and that there is no way they should be outbid by anyone, if it's someone they truly want. And even if only half the new guys pan out, that's 4 positions under cost control for the next 5 years, with plenty more in the pipeline to replace the flops. They can spend big bucks and still have a middling payroll. If tey add $50 million in the off season on pitching, their payroll would be ~ $100,000,000, which is about 15th place this year.
   48. Misirlou was a Buddhist prodigy Posted: August 13, 2014 at 02:59 PM (#4770310)
In the real world top prospects don't always develop and they sure as hell don't develop at the same rate. Now, the Cubs understand that you want both high end prospects and enough depth in the system to where you can easily miss on a few and still have a talented team, but as of now all this talk about the amazing Cubs future is just premature.

Does the future look promising? Sure. But nothing is promised with so many players yet to establish an MLB baseline.


I guess I'm not expressing myself properly. I'm arguing from a management standpoint. Right now, I see the Cubs opening day lineup as:

C - Castillo
1B - Rizzo
2b - Baez
SS - Castro
3B - Bryant
LF - Someone
CF - Alcantara
RF - Soler.

they might not all arrive on opening day, but, again, from a management standpoint, that's the projected 2015 lineup. That lineup will cost no more than $20 million, assuming $2 mil for first year arb Castillo, and $3.5 mil for some placeholder LF. Again, the prospects may not all pan out, but it's not like management is going to spend big bucks on other free agents just in case. That is a very reasonable projection for what their 8 daily position players will cost, whether it's Soler in right or some scrap heap pickup. Less than what the Yankees are going to pay Alex Rodriguez. If they want to go super cheap, they stick Ryan Sweeney, who is under contract for $1.5 mil in LF, and the total package drops to $18 mil.
   49. McCoy Posted: August 13, 2014 at 03:06 PM (#4770321)
Hey McCoy, I've noticed you stopped giving day-by-day updates on Castro's numbers in every Cubs-related thread. Did you lose interest because he's been hitting well again?

I don't believe I did a day by day update on Castro. I generally look at chunks of time. He's having a good August so far which is good because he had an absolutely crappy July. And really from May 20th to July 31st he had a .676 OPS in those 65 games.
   50. McCoy Posted: August 13, 2014 at 03:12 PM (#4770328)
The thing of it is is that we're likely to see some regression next year on the players we've become enamored with today. Arrieta, Rizzo, Castro, and Hendricks are likely to be this good again next year.
   51. madvillain Posted: August 13, 2014 at 03:14 PM (#4770329)
I guess I'm not expressing myself properly. I'm arguing from a management standpoint.


You're expressing yourself fine but pick two of those guys out of all of them that don't pan out as a median case -- say Soler and Alcantara. Say for the sake of argument those guys are 0-1 WAR players in MLB. Those players aren't that valuable even at league min.

Most teams with an excelleent farm system could project an awesome cost controlled lineup but how often does it happen that way? I can't think of any other example recently other than maybe the Rays.
   52. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: August 13, 2014 at 03:25 PM (#4770342)
The Cubs may decide they'd rather zero in on a deal for Hamels. Seems like they'd be well-positioned to do that; they've got the surplus prospects to trade, Hamels's yearly salary's a lot less than what the FA pitchers will probably get, and the Phillies desperately need to get younger (not that it's clear that RAJ realizes this...).

That makes a ton of sense. Maybe package Castro and a B prospect, and a couple of C+ lottery tickets.
   53. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: August 13, 2014 at 03:27 PM (#4770344)
The point is, the Cubs can put together a cromulent team, minus 2 starting pitchers, for under $50 mil. That gives them an incredible leg up. The Dodgers have $172 mil committed, and that still doesn't buy them a 2B, SS, C, a couple of bullpen arms, and 2 starters. Are the dodgers more likely to go over $200 million than the Cubs are to go over $100?

The Yankees have $166 million committed to just 10 players next year. They need to find a SS, SP, and entire bullpen just to get to the 2 SP short of an entire team that the Cubs will be looking at with a <$50 mil payroll.

The Angels are on the hook for $120 mil next year and that buys them 9 players, and in 2016 that goes up to 126 mil for 7 players.


The Dodgers will crash through $200M (and probably $250M) without thinking twice. If the Yankees miss the playoffs again, I can see them approaching $250M.

The point is, everyone of the big market teams has money, and the Cubs have probably the cheapest owners.
   54. Misirlou was a Buddhist prodigy Posted: August 13, 2014 at 03:29 PM (#4770346)
You're expressing yourself fine but pick two of those guys out of all of them that don't pan out as a median case -- say Soler and Alcantara. Say for the sake of argument those guys are 0-1 WAR players in MLB. Those players aren't that valuable even at league min.


I agree, but as I said, it's not like the Cubs are going to sign some high priced vets to sit on the bench just in case. Barring some catastrophy between now and the off season, that is a reasonable projection of what their daily lineup will cost. If Soler starts the season in right and he sucks eggs, it's not like RF will all of a sudden get a lot more expensive. I'm saying it's reasonable for management to project that ultra low cost, and use that knowledge to spend big on a premium pitcher or 2, and still have a payroll no higher than the median.
   55. Misirlou was a Buddhist prodigy Posted: August 13, 2014 at 03:37 PM (#4770357)
The point is, everyone of the big market teams has money, and the Cubs have probably the cheapest owners.


I agree, but as cheap as Ricketts seems to be, I don't see the Cubs with a payroll that is over $150 million less than he Dodgers and Yankees, given where the Cubs seem to be in the success cycle. If you are not going to parley the incredible advantage they have in low cost players coupled with a huge market into making free agent splash to support it, then you have no business running a baseball team.
   56. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: August 13, 2014 at 03:44 PM (#4770368)
I agree, but as cheap as Ricketts seems to be, I don't see the Cubs with a payroll that is over $150 million less than he Dodgers and Yankees, given where the Cubs seem to be in the success cycle. If you are not going to parley the incredible advantage they have in low cost players coupled with a huge market into making free agent splash to support it, then you have no business running a baseball team.

I agree the Cubs will break $100M, maybe get to $150M.

Where I disagree is that they won't be willing to blow away the competition to spend $400M on two starting pitchers. If they could sign them for 4/110 each, sure they'd take 2. But it's going to be 8/200+, and those guys will be taking up 33% of your payroll for 8 years.

If they did, and if their prospects actually developed, they'd be looking at a $200M payroll in 4 or 5 years. If they're good, they won't be cheap for long.
   57. Spahn Insane Posted: August 13, 2014 at 04:00 PM (#4770393)
That makes a ton of sense. Maybe package Castro and a B prospect, and a couple of C+ lottery tickets.

Yeah, Russell probably won't be ready to start for the big club at the beginning of next year, but I think Castro's days might be numbered in Chicago both because of the presence of Russell and the attractiveness of Castro as trade bait. If they can use him as the centerpiece of a Hamels deal, I say go for it. Now, whether the Phils will be over Jimmy Rollins by then...
   58. Misirlou was a Buddhist prodigy Posted: August 13, 2014 at 04:02 PM (#4770395)
If they did, and if their prospects actually developed, they'd be looking at a $200M payroll in 4 or 5 years. If they're good, they won't be cheap for long.


they'd also be annual WS contenders, and if that happens, a $200 million payroll will look like a bargain, even to someone as cheap as Ricketts.
   59. Misirlou was a Buddhist prodigy Posted: August 13, 2014 at 04:07 PM (#4770398)
Yeah, Russell probably won't be ready to start for the big club at the beginning of next year,


They could move Alcantara back to short as a stopgap, or maybe Baez and put Valbuena at second. They do have a lot of options. I'd rather see them get good pitching with money only, rather than money (Hamels ain't cheap. 4/$90 plus a $20 mil team or $24 mil vesting option in year 5) and good players, but it's not my money
   60. McCoy Posted: August 13, 2014 at 04:10 PM (#4770403)
The Cubs will get to 100 million and they may get to 150 million at some point but they certainly aren't getting there in one offseason. There is no way in the world the Cubs are going to do that this offseason. They might commit to 150 million dollars over the next 6 to 8 years in this offseason but they certainly aren't going to go out and pull a Rangers offseason where they sign one guy to 250 million and then drop another 200 odd million dollars on other FA. We'll be lucky to see the Cubs sign one A level FA and a bunch of reclamation projects this offseason. I would guess the Cubs crack 100 million dollars in payroll in 2017 or 2018.
   61. Spahn Insane Posted: August 13, 2014 at 05:29 PM (#4770473)
They could move Alcantara back to short as a stopgap, or maybe Baez and put Valbuena at second. They do have a lot of options.

Yeah, something like that arrangement also occurred to me, though obviously you'd prefer not to move any more players around any more times than you have to (thinking, of course, that they've already moved Baez and Alcantara once this year).

I agree that assuming a high salary plus giving up talent isn't ideal, but if the top free agents actually end up getting 30MM a year for 7 years or so, Hamels's shorter deal might seem a particular bargain. Plus, he might be the best of those four pitchers going forward.
   62. madvillain Posted: August 13, 2014 at 05:49 PM (#4770487)
Cubs / Sox trade actually might make sense next year. Chicago needs an upgrade at catcher and the Cubs need some close to MLB starters. Chicago has some guys that should be pretty close by next July (Danish, Beck, Montas, Rodon) and probably will make a couple of them available for a position player upgrade at the MLB level.
   63. SouthSideRyan Posted: August 13, 2014 at 06:18 PM (#4770506)
Who do you suggest the Cubs trade to the White Sox to play catcher? Who do you suggest the Cubs start at catcher should they trade the only guy remotely capable of playing it at the major league level (Castillo)?
   64. SouthSideRyan Posted: August 13, 2014 at 06:19 PM (#4770508)
I'm not as pessimistic as McCoy, I expect payroll to clear 100M in 2016. But I agree it'd be tough to see them break 100M this offseason considering the seemingly hardline stance this FO takes on overpaying, and the fact that our 2015 payroll is 31M right now with not much coming in arbitration.
   65. The District Attorney Posted: August 13, 2014 at 06:48 PM (#4770525)
I originally read #62 as suggesting the Cubs acquire a catcher from the Red Sox... which would make a lot more sense, since GMs very often trade with the teams for whom they formerly worked; the Red Sox do have two young catchers who both look very good; and trading with one's crosstown rival has the potential to turn out embarrassing, as both the Cubs and White Sox should be aware.

Since the Cubs have middle infielders to trade and Boston has a pretty good 2B, it would probably largely depend on whether the Red Sox think Bogaerts can hack it at SS, which is still unclear to me. (Quite possibly because they themselves are still figuring it out.)
   66. odds are meatwad is drunk Posted: August 13, 2014 at 07:05 PM (#4770538)
But i dont think the cubs need to add to there sp depth outside of a major fa signing. They have plenty of arms that could fill oit the back end of the rotation already.
   67. Misirlou was a Buddhist prodigy Posted: August 13, 2014 at 07:07 PM (#4770541)
I originally read #62 as suggesting the Cubs acquire a catcher from the Red Sox...


He's clearly talking about the White Sox, but yeah, I don't see Castillo getting a great haul, and I don't know what the Cubs do to replace him. And I don't think trading position prospects for pitching prospects is what they need to do anyway. In addition to Hendricks, they have C J edwards and Pierce Johnson.
   68. McCoy Posted: August 13, 2014 at 07:23 PM (#4770553)
The Cubs would have to go out and get about 50 million dollars a year worth of premiere free agents to get to a 100 million dollar payroll by 2016.

So next year who are the likely starters?

C-Castillo/Backup(Baker)- 3 million or so
1B: Rizzo- 5.3 million
2B: Baez- 500,000
SS: Castro- 6.9 million
3B: Bryant- 500,000
LF: Rookie/Arb guy? 500,000 to 2 million or so
CF: Alcantara- 500,000
RF: Rookie/Arb guy? 500,000 to 2 million or so
Bench: Sweeney, rookies, throw in some scrap heap 5 million dollar guys- 9 million or so.

Pitching:
1. Jackson 13 million
2. Hendricks 500,000
3. Arrieta 1.8 million
4. Wood 6 million
5. ?

RP- 9 million or so

So that is roughly 60 million.
   69. madvillain Posted: August 13, 2014 at 07:36 PM (#4770566)
Was just throwing it out there and any GM that is afraid of "embarrassing himself" as a reason not to make a trade should hang up his boots (or tie and wingtips). I thought the cubs had some hot shot catching prospect to replace Castillo in house, my bad.
   70. bookbook Posted: August 13, 2014 at 07:39 PM (#4770568)
Yes, the Royals' Myers/Moustakas/ Hosmer era hasn't yet arrived, nor the M's Ackley/Montero/Smoak era. Both teams have shifted to trying to get it done with pitching and Endy Chavez--Endy Chavez is stretched mighty thin about now, though both teams are in playoff contention. (Unclear is whether the winner or the loser gets to keep Chavez as the prize...)

The Cubs are doing well, but the next step is the big one.
   71. Spahn Insane Posted: August 13, 2014 at 08:50 PM (#4770636)
69: The Cubs did draft 2 catchers in the first three rounds this year, but the first (Schwarber) is already spending time in the outfield, and the other (whatshisname out of VaTech) isn't talked about by anybody as being close to the majors. They also picked up a decent catching prospect (Caratini) from the Braves in the Bonifacio deal, but he's in low A ball.
   72. zonk Posted: August 13, 2014 at 09:01 PM (#4770647)
What do I know about Schwarber's defense by just looking at bb-ref defensive numbers - and the sample size is tiny - but Schwarber does seem to have a pretty good CS% (1 of 4 at Boise, 7 of 12 at Kane, 3 of 10 at Daytona). 2 PBs at Daytona, another at Kane, none at Boise.

If he's got any chance of sticking behind the plate, even as a subpar defender, I'd be inclined to keep him there. He played some OF in college, he's playing it now in the minors. If his bat pans out, I'm sure he can move to LF if Caratini ends up looking like a keeper... but I think Caratini is a catching convert, too.

I had hopes that Welly would up being a mini-Geo Soto for a few years, but it's just not working out. He's stretched as a starter.
   73. SouthSideRyan Posted: August 13, 2014 at 10:01 PM (#4770696)
Correction to Miserlou from upthread: Soler can opt into arbitration once he's eligible. He'll only be making 4M in 2020 if he completely washes out.
   74. madvillain Posted: August 13, 2014 at 10:39 PM (#4770717)
The Cubs are doing well, but the next step is the big one.


Cross town comparisons are inevitable but the Sox' fugure looks pretty bright as well granted they "take the next step":

IMO, if you look at their core of talent:

Abreu
Sale
Quintana
Eaton
Garcia

and pencil them in for an expected combined WAR of say 18-20 -- you just need a bunch of 1-2 WAR types around them in order to have a pretty good team. In addition the Sox have high potential starting pitching coming up through the minors rapidly. Chicago does a great job keeping these guys healthy (knock on wood), so they are playing to strength by stockpiling:

Francellis Montas who they got in the Peavy grade, Spencer Adams who was their 2nd round pick this year (and was a 1st round grade by most accounts), Carlos Rodon (speaks for himself, dominated tonight in high A, was touching 97 sitting at 94-95 and 87-89 on the slider) and Tyler Danish, who other than being short (5-10) has excellent stuff and periphereals at a very young age for his league.

As far as payroll, the Sox probably have some 40-50 million to add to the roster when "in contention". JR isn't exactly Mark Cuban but he is willing to spend a little when he thinks he's got a chance of winning. They have Sale, Quintana and Abreu locked up to rediculously team friendly deals and all their other talent is hardly even super 2 eligible yet. Eaton, Garcia, Gillaspie are all under club control for the next several years at min.

Their only real bad contract headed into 2015 will be John Danks but that money is hardly crippling. IMO they should just waive him but doesn't look like they are willing to do that. Hopefully they can move him on the offseason.

Now, don't get me wrong several things have to break right for the Sox to have a nice 3-5 year contention window (sometimes finding 1 WAR players isn't that easy, especially seemingly for Chicago who currently have big holes in LF, 2B, BP), -- but every bad or mediocre team (of which Chicago currently has a couple) has to have things go right in order to become good or excellent, that's a given.

I think fans of both teams should be excited. Baseball is more fun in Chicago when both teams are good the current rivalry is about as fearsome as Clark the cuddly bear -- I'd welcome a return to the AJ/Bennett fight days when the parks were rocking and both teams had playoff aspirations.
   75. Walt Davis Posted: August 14, 2014 at 01:53 AM (#4770776)
Hmmm . . . if your team could draft Price, Strasburg, and Cole in three consecutive drafts or Longoria and any two of the other guys in #13, which would you choose? The college position players turned up fewer busts (relatively speaking) than the college pitchers, but the college pitchers developed into stars more frequently, it seems.

Too late to respond to this I guess but ...

You don't get to pick the best three pitchers after you know who the best three pitchers are. Which would you rather have, a random selection of 3 of the 10 first college pitcher selections or 3 of the college hitters? 9 of the 10 hitters have turned out pretty good, a few very good. 3-4 of the pitchers have turned out good, some pretty much busts and some who knows.

And don't over-rate those pitchers. OK, Price has produced 22 WAR, awesome. But Strasburg's in his 5th season, has "just" 10 WAR and hasn't topped 180 IP in a season. Cole's off to a solid start but it's just an ERA+ of 103 and 2.2 WAR in 200 IP. Romero started great and was up to 10 WAR but is now finished.

The trend's not good but even Ackley has nearly 8 WAR. Rendon is at 4 WAR for this year (and for his 900 PA career).

And the Longoria/Gordon/Wieters trio -- 79 WAR man. Gordon has 27, more than Price.

You must be Registered and Logged In to post comments.

 

 

<< Back to main

BBTF Partner

Support BBTF

donate

Thanks to
Shooty Is Disappointed With His Midstream Urine
for his generous support.

Bookmarks

You must be logged in to view your Bookmarks.

Hot Topics

NewsblogOTP Politics November 2014: Mets Deny Bias in Ticket Official’s Firing
(4930 - 1:28pm, Nov 26)
Last: DJS and the Infinite Sadness

NewsblogShould the Red Sox Be Afraid of Hanley Ramirez Being Hanley Ramirez? - Red Sox - Boston.com
(7 - 1:27pm, Nov 26)
Last: Jose Is The Most Absurd Thing on the Site

Newsblog2015 Potential Hall of Fame Ballot | Baseball-Reference.com
(7 - 1:27pm, Nov 26)
Last: Moeball

NewsblogOT - November 2014 College Football thread
(577 - 1:14pm, Nov 26)
Last: Lance Reddick! Lance him!

NewsblogOT: NFL/NHL thread
(8682 - 1:04pm, Nov 26)
Last: Howie Menckel

NewsblogStanton Losing About $141 Million of Record Deal to Taxes - Bloomberg
(90 - 1:00pm, Nov 26)
Last: Swedish Chef

NewsblogFemale Sportswriter Asks: 'Why Are All My Twitter Followers Men?' | ThinkProgress
(166 - 12:55pm, Nov 26)
Last: McCoy

NewsblogPrimer Dugout (and link of the day) 11-26-2014
(6 - 12:38pm, Nov 26)
Last: salvomania

NewsblogYankees won't get into bidding war for Chase Headley: source - NY Daily News
(9 - 12:27pm, Nov 26)
Last: Ray (RDP)

NewsblogAdam Rubin: My Hall of Fame ballot
(58 - 12:19pm, Nov 26)
Last: SoSHially Unacceptable

NewsblogWendy Thurm on Twitter: "What the hell kinda panda is that?"
(11 - 12:18pm, Nov 26)
Last: bunyon

NewsblogOT: Monthly NBA Thread - November 2014
(1137 - 12:14pm, Nov 26)
Last: bob gee

NewsblogNotable Players Available In The Rule 5 Draft - BaseballAmerica.com
(2 - 12:01pm, Nov 26)
Last: RoyalsRetro (AG#1F)

NewsblogRolling Stone: The 15 Worst Owners in Sports
(46 - 11:54am, Nov 26)
Last: Tulo's Fishy Mullet (mrams)

NewsblogDarvish cleared to throw « Postcards From Elysian Fields
(1 - 10:56am, Nov 26)
Last: Batman

Page rendered in 0.5893 seconds
53 querie(s) executed