Baseball for the Thinking Fan

Login | Register | Feedback

btf_logo
You are here > Home > Gonfalon Cubs > Discussion
Gonfalon Cubs
— Cubs Baseball for Thinking Fans

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.

Page 1 of 2 pages  1 2 > 
   1. dcsmyth1 Posted: October 29, 2005 at 10:48 PM (#1710976)
---"and at least matching Maddux in performance if he finds a slot in the rotation."

That's the only thing from the above analysis I disagree with. I don't mind having Rusch on the team, but not as an expected starter. Iwould like to see a solid newcomer as the 4th starter, with Maddux and his lg avg ERA as the 5th. Rusch should be a spot starter+long reliever+rotation starter in case of injury to a regular starter (K Wood?:))+situational LH reliever. Filling all of these roles, he is an asset.

And I agree about Williamson. It looks like he simply had bad luck in his 15 IP, in terms of HR, and H allowed on BIP. The Cubs need some bullpen studs, and in spite of the ugly ERA, Williamson is one of their best bets.

And sure, pick up Walker at that salary, whether you want to play him or trade him.
   2. Sweet Posted: October 29, 2005 at 11:11 PM (#1711007)
I'm on board with the actual signings; less so with the proposed one. I'll also quibble with the description of Murton as "extremely promising but still raw." That might aptly describe Pie, but I consider Murton "moderately promising and ready to play." In any case, I agree that they need a masher in RF. Frankly, the only one out there I see is Giles.
   3. Pops Freshenmeyer Posted: October 29, 2005 at 11:40 PM (#1711047)
I'm satisfied with Jerome Williams and Maddux as the 4 and 5 pitchers in the rotation.

it’s possible they could bring Burnitz back at a much lower price

*shudder*
   4. Andere Richtingen Posted: October 30, 2005 at 12:08 AM (#1711086)
As for Rusch, I’m not enthusiastic about the proposed deal, but I can understand it. Rusch is the poster boy for the randomness of opposing batting average

I agree, but unfortunately that randomness fluctuates around a mean ERA of 4.88. Why would you want to make a two-year commitment to that? As someone mentioned, take your chances with Rich Hill, or anyone you can get for one year at the same price.

Given his past, and a more consistent usage pattern from Baker, I see Rusch splitting the difference between this year and last and at least matching Maddux in performance if he finds a slot in the rotation.

Well, I hope you're right. I see him splitting the difference between this year, last, and the year before that ( a year in which his peripherals weren't out of line with 2004-05).

I was all for the Cubs re-signing Rusch last year for the contract he got, and wouldn't have a problem if he had exercised his option. But committing to paying him $3 million this year and next is out of line. If Rusch had elected not to exercise his option, the Cubs would have been no worse off.
   5. H. Vaughn Posted: October 30, 2005 at 12:54 AM (#1711129)
Rusch has to be frustrating for managers. Everybody bats .300 against him, always. This year he inexplicably (sample size?) let lefties hit like .332/.930 against him and was godawful in relief (5.00 + ERA). Yet on a three year average basis, he's marginally better against lefties and better as a reliever than a starter. He sucks in day games - half a point extra in ERA over the last three years. OTOH he keeps it in the yard, has some amazing games and lefties are scarce. Three million seems like a lot, but I'm skeptical on Hill and heaven knows the old schoolers can't go without a lefty in the rotation. He's pretty marginal for a fifth starter on a championship team and he'll be the fifth starter if (when) Wood can't go. A low BABIP first half, though, and he'd make nifty deadline trade bait.
   6. Fred Garvin is dead to Mug Posted: October 30, 2005 at 01:41 AM (#1711172)
Well, DePodesta has been canned by the Dodgers. Not that I expect anything short of a 2 year extension for Hendry, but there's something to think about nonetheless.
   7. Pops Freshenmeyer Posted: October 30, 2005 at 02:49 AM (#1711209)
They have yet to extend Dusty as the rumors were suggesting. I wonder if the club is ready to move in a different direction should 2006 turn into another disappointment.
   8. Andere Richtingen Posted: October 30, 2005 at 01:22 PM (#1711357)
OTOH he keeps it in the yard, has some amazing games and lefties are scarce. Three million seems like a lot, but I'm skeptical on Hill and heaven knows the old schoolers can't go without a lefty in the rotation. He's pretty marginal for a fifth starter on a championship team and he'll be the fifth starter if (when) Wood can't go.

He gives you that flexibility, but a two year commitment? I think the Cubs have been very lucky that they got the two years out of Rusch that they did. Rolling the dice on two more strikes me as way too much.

They have yet to extend Dusty as the rumors were suggesting. I wonder if the club is ready to move in a different direction should 2006 turn into another disappointment.

I think not extending Dusty is the best we can hope for.
   9. 100 Years is Nothing Posted: October 30, 2005 at 03:26 PM (#1711451)
Murton is ready to start, and be at least a league average left fielder. That should free up enough money to sign Furcal and Giles (should he want to leave the West coast, and still have money available for shoring up the bullpen a bit. I am not sold on the Rush signing either, but depth is necessary judging of the past injuries.
   10. Fred Garvin is dead to Mug Posted: October 30, 2005 at 04:17 PM (#1711482)
They have yet to extend Dusty as the rumors were suggesting.

Of course, the rumors were that the extensions would take place in Spring Training (or at least in February), so it's still a bit too soon to tell.

I do think, though, that when MacPhail floated this out in late August, it was something of a trial balloon, designed at the very least to take the heat off Dusty and Hendry and (hopefully) to take the public's temperature. The first part (taking heat off) worked; my hope is that MacPhail waits to see how things go next season before offering an extension to Hendry -- or, more likely, that Hendry holds off on offering anything to Dusty.

If things go as expected and Hendry gets an extension in February and immediately gives a similar one to Dusty, I will have lost any lingering hope I may have in the "Hendry-Baker schism" -- the two will be irretrievably joined as far as I'm concerned.
   11. Dan The Mediocre is one of "the rest" Posted: October 30, 2005 at 04:32 PM (#1711502)
I'd be more satisfied with Maddux if he didn't make a ton of money this year.
   12. Fred Garvin is dead to Mug Posted: October 30, 2005 at 10:13 PM (#1711855)
I'd be more satisfied with Maddux if he didn't make a ton of money this year.

Why? I don't see the Cubs saying that they can't/won't sign Pitcher X because they don't have the cash, so WTF does Maddux's salary have to do with anything?

You/we/others might have expected more from Maddux, but the bottom line is that for the last two years, he's given us average to abo-ve average performance while racking up 200+ IP each year. That's pretty satisfying to me, even if he's not Maddux v.1994, and to the extent I'm disappointed at all, his salary has nothing to do with it.
   13. Andere Richtingen Posted: October 30, 2005 at 10:30 PM (#1711873)
You/we/others might have expected more from Maddux, but the bottom line is that for the last two years, he's given us average to abo-ve average performance while racking up 200+ IP each year. That's pretty satisfying to me, even if he's not Maddux v.1994, and to the extent I'm disappointed at all, his salary has nothing to do with it.

So far Maddux has been exactly what we should have expected, without the collapse we all worried about.
   14. Sweet Posted: October 31, 2005 at 12:16 AM (#1711967)
Anyone know a source for cumulative starters' ERA by league by season? Maddux's ERA+ the past two years has been 113 and 101, but this probably understates his performance relative to other starters. In any event, he's been significantly above average (in 2004) and above average (in 2005), making him a more than capable -- albeit overpaid -- fourth or fifth starter. I expect more of the same in 2006, though I'll be crossing my fingers against a collapse.
   15. spivey Posted: October 31, 2005 at 12:30 AM (#1711981)
I think Rusch has consistently had poor BABIPs through his career (not every year, but based on his career on the whole). As such, I'm not convinced that he's a poster boy for randomness of BABIP for pitchers at all. The HR/IP problems that plagued him early in his career have seen to have gone away. Did he start pitching different? I'd also be worried they could return, in which case he's not even a replacement level pitcher. Anyways, I think the Rusch deal is bad. I don't think he should be getting more than a 2/3 million dollar deal, and I'm not positive he even deserves that.
   16. Andere Richtingen Posted: October 31, 2005 at 12:39 AM (#1711987)
I think Rusch has consistently had poor BABIPs through his career (not every year, but based on his career on the whole). As such, I'm not convinced that he's a poster boy for randomness of BABIP for pitchers at all.

Well, he's the poster boy because it seems that he can manage ERAs anywhere between the mid-3s and mid-6s with pretty much the same peripherals. The problem is that that fluctuation is around a pretty mediocre mean (something close to 5).

I don't think it's entirely accurate to assume it's all random fluctuation though. Rather than just randomness, I think he walks a thin rope in terms of getting the job done. His stuff requires absolute pinpoint location with little room for error.
   17. spivey Posted: October 31, 2005 at 12:47 AM (#1711997)
Well, to be truthful, Rusch's K/BB ratio has been almost exactly 2 since 2001, with the exception of 2004 when it was pretty close to 3. Also, that was his best HR/IP year as well. While fairly close to his other peripherals, there is still a moderate difference. I just don't see that kind of success in his future. I think the Cubs will be lucky to get 2 years of an ERA+ around 100 out of him, and think he could easily give 2 years with an ERA+ bordering on 90.
   18. Pops Freshenmeyer Posted: October 31, 2005 at 01:17 AM (#1712041)
That's pretty satisfying to me, even if he's not Maddux v.1994, and to the extent I'm disappointed at all, his salary has nothing to do with it.

If the Cubs paid him a salarout of line with his expected performance in hopes of benefitting from his veteran wisdom, that seems to be a disappointment. If he has had a positive effect on the rest of the staff it hasn't manifested itself in improved control or performance.

Maddux has pitched as well as could be expected. Was that the only contribution the Cubs were looking for with that salary?
   19. H. Vaughn Posted: October 31, 2005 at 01:31 AM (#1712056)
Anyways, I think the Rusch deal is bad. I don't think he should be getting more than a 2/3 million dollar deal, and I'm not positive he even deserves that.

I tend to agree, but really anything much below 5 mil a year is pocket change to an organization with their revenue. And if they are set on having a lefty starter, I don't think they could do much better. Washburn and Rogers are about the only established lefties who would put up better numbers and I would think Washburn's going to get Milton/Ortiz money and Rogers, well, a club has to factor in the cost of armor-plating their cameras.
   20. KB JBAR (trhn) Posted: October 31, 2005 at 01:43 PM (#1712409)
Given his injury troubles, Walker will need a competent backup/platoon partner. I'm hoping the Cubs sign Furcal and put Cedeno in that role. However, the only way that would work out well is if the Cubs get rid of Neifi and Macias. Otherwise, I'll be screaming at my TV after Walker gets injured and Cedeno puts up an 0-4.
   21. Hendry's Wad of Cash (UCCF) Posted: October 31, 2005 at 03:05 PM (#1712487)
I had thought that Rusch said he didn't want to return unless he was going to be a starter. If that's true, I would assume he wouldn't agree to this kind of contract just to sit in the bullpen the next couple of years.

But I'd be shocked if the Cubs were willing to make that kind of commitment to a guy with his history. He's done well in the swingman role, a guy who will get 8-10 starts filling in when needed but otherwise spends most of his time in the bullpen. I thought Jerome Williams showed enough last year to win this year's 5th spot in the rotation - inconsistent yes, but he had a very good stretch of games that shows what he's capable of (and he ended the season with a sub-4.00 ERA starting with the Cubs, which is perfectly fine for a guy who came into the season with conditioning problems, struggled, got traded, and had to regroup in the minors). If the Cubs take Rusch and make him a swingman, this isn't terrible. You figure they'll overpay for a reliever every offseason, so this can be their expensive dip into the bullpen for 2005-06. If they displace Williams in favor of Rusch, it's not a good move at all. I'd expect Williams to be substantially better than Rusch this season.

As for the others, I agree with the moves. Burnitz at $7M is vastly overpaid, and I hope they don't bring him back at a reduced price (unless that reduced price is $1M and they do it because they're clearing salary room to make substantial upgrades in CF and at SS). Williamson is another sign that Hendry is willing to commit to these injury rehab signings, and given the success he's had so far (Dempster) I don't mind $2M for a year for a guy who could be excellent out of the back of the pen. Walker we already discussed, and the Furcal/Walker/Cedeno combination (with Hairston available as well) should (but probably won't) sign the walking papers for Neifi and Macias.
   22. Fred Garvin is dead to Mug Posted: October 31, 2005 at 05:36 PM (#1712810)
Cubs Sign Rusch for 2 Years -- terms not disclosed.
   23. Moses Taylor loves a good maim Posted: October 31, 2005 at 05:41 PM (#1712816)
Rather than assuming this is the "Hendry overpays for the bullpen signing," I'm going to hope this is his "Quick! I need to resign one of the backups before someone else gets to them" (aka the Pixie and Dixie deals last year).
   24. Andere Richtingen Posted: October 31, 2005 at 05:50 PM (#1712835)
If they displace Williams in favor of Rusch, it's not a good move at all. I'd expect Williams to be substantially better than Rusch this season.

While I agree, I'm not too excited about Williams. In reality, Williams should have some trade value, so maybe Hendry will go that route.

In any case, I don't like the Rusch contract at all.
   25. Fred Garvin is dead to Mug Posted: October 31, 2005 at 05:54 PM (#1712843)
If the Cubs paid him a salarout of line with his expected performance in hopes of benefitting from his veteran wisdom, that seems to be a disappointment. If he has had a positive effect on the rest of the staff it hasn't manifested itself in improved control or performance.

Maddux has pitched as well as could be expected. Was that the only contribution the Cubs were looking for with that salary?


I agree with much of this and don't think I really made my point very well. I'll try again:

Maddux is clearly nowhere near vintage and I'll certainly agree that he's overpaid for what he's contributing. Still, he *is* contributing, eating up innings at average to above-average levels.

Nevertheless, Dan said he's not satisfied (and others have said so as well), indicating they expected more. Maybe that means they were expecting something more like 150 ERA+, who knows.

My point is that I don't understand how salary has anything to do with this. If Dan and others were expecting 200 IP at an ERA+ of over 150, I think those are unrealistic expectations, regardless of how much Maddux is getting paid.

I can understand saying that Maddux is overpaid -- heck, I agree with this -- but don't understand the idea that "I'd be more satisfied with Maddux if he didn't make a ton of money this year." Even if the Cubs were paying Maddux less than $1mm, if you're not satisfied with his performance, you're not satisfied. (See, e.g., Macias, Perez, et al.) From a fan's standpoint, my satisfaction of Derrek Lee, for instance, has virtually nothing to do with how much he was paid in 2005.
   26. Moses Taylor loves a good maim Posted: October 31, 2005 at 06:05 PM (#1712860)
Nevertheless, Dan said he's not satisfied (and others have said so as well), indicating they expected more. Maybe that means they were expecting something more like 150 ERA+, who knows.

You can call me out by name if you want, that's cool. (BTW, did you get my email?).

I understand your point, and it's true for the most part. I thought it was a bad deal at the beginning, and unless he was going to perform better than we all expected (which he didn't), he was never going to be worth that deal in my mind.
   27. More Dewey is Always Good Posted: October 31, 2005 at 06:11 PM (#1712876)
Was that the only contribution the Cubs were looking for with that salary?

Wasn't there a certain amount of PR benefit for the Cubs in terms of Maddux' return? I don't know how that would manifest itself in terms of increased ticket sales or whatever, but that signing seemed to generate a lot of goodwill with long-time Cub fans.

I still remember when Maddux left Chicago - there was an awful lot of howling. His return was a great story.
   28. Moses Taylor loves a good maim Posted: October 31, 2005 at 06:14 PM (#1712890)
Wasn't there a certain amount of PR benefit for the Cubs in terms of Maddux' return? I don't know how that would manifest itself in terms of increased ticket sales or whatever, but that signing seemed to generate a lot of goodwill with long-time Cub fans.

I still remember when Maddux left Chicago - there was an awful lot of howling. His return was a great story.


Very true. I think the story at the time was that they increased the budget specifically to sign Maddux (everyone was hoping for Pudge). But after the 2003 season, I don't think signing Maddux was going to have any actual effect on ticket sales. The Cubs could have probably tried to intentionally piss the fans off (and they tried by signing Macias and Ordonez and Perez that year) and not had to worry about ticket sales.
   29. Sweet Posted: October 31, 2005 at 06:18 PM (#1712904)
Thumbs down to a two-year Rusch signing, even at a modest salary (which Hendry probably exceeded here). If there's one thing the Cubs farm system is capable of producing, it's middling left-handers. Currently in the pipeline are -- ranked roughly in order of promise -- Hill, Pinto, Marshall, Pignatiello, Bartosh, Koronka, Valdes, and Rohlicek. None of these guys is a sure thing, of course, but it's a pretty safe bet that one of them, if given the chance, would equal Rusch's performance in 2007 (and possibly 2006 as well).

And that's just looking at the left-handers, on the assumption that Hendry feels the irrational need to have some on hand regardless of their platoon performance. Rusch, for example, got hammered by left-handers in 2005 (.909 OPS in 120 PAs). Over the past four years, he's been equally "tough" on lefties as righties (~.780 OPS), but he's no lefty-killer.
   30. Bunny Vincennes Posted: October 31, 2005 at 06:18 PM (#1712905)
I still remember when Maddux left Chicago - there was an awful lot of howling. His return was a great story.

I'm glad Larry Himes feels bad about it now. That was moronic.
   31. Fred Garvin is dead to Mug Posted: October 31, 2005 at 06:30 PM (#1712925)
(BTW, did you get my email?).

No, but I saw the S&B notice in the Lounge, if that's what it's about.
   32. Dan The Mediocre is one of "the rest" Posted: October 31, 2005 at 06:35 PM (#1712937)
I was hoping for a couple years of sub-4.00 ERA as well as helping the young pitchers with their control. While he hasn't been too far off the on field expectations, he doesn't seem to have done anything off the field to help.
   33. Bunny Vincennes Posted: October 31, 2005 at 06:55 PM (#1712980)
   34. Sweet Posted: October 31, 2005 at 07:45 PM (#1713064)
Details of the Rusch deal:

Glendon Rusch inked a two-year contract with the Cubs on Monday after receiving assurances he will get a "serious look" for a spot in the team's crowded starting rotation. Rusch's new deal runs through 2007 and guarantees the 30-year-old left-hander $6 million, plus as much as $1 million more in performance bonuses based on starts.

. . .

Rusch will earn $2.75 million in 2006 and $3.25 million in 2007. The contract includes up to an additional $500,000 each season in bonuses based on starts.


So that's that. Rusch could earn almost $4 million in 2007. Yuck.
   35. Fred Garvin is dead to Mug Posted: October 31, 2005 at 07:54 PM (#1713078)
Here's the 2006 Schedule...

Done with the Cardinals on August 27 and done with the Astros on August 16.

Also, we get only 6 home games with the Astros and 9 road games, while the split is 10 home/9 road against the Cards.
   36. Spahn Insane Posted: October 31, 2005 at 08:15 PM (#1713117)
Ending the year at home against our archrival Rockies. I've already got butterflies.
   37. Hendry's Wad of Cash (UCCF) Posted: October 31, 2005 at 08:22 PM (#1713129)
Ending the year at home against our archrival Rockies. I've already got butterflies.

Hey, those could be crucial games next year, the ones that determine whether the team finishes over .500 or just wins 79 games again.
   38. Fred Garvin is dead to Mug Posted: October 31, 2005 at 08:26 PM (#1713136)
Remember last year, when we were all looking forward to the crucial September battles with the Cardinals and Astros? Heck, even in July, many were still considering us "in the hunt" because of all those head-to-head matchups.

How anticlimactic.
   39. Bunny Vincennes Posted: October 31, 2005 at 09:54 PM (#1713336)
Hey, those could be crucial games next year, the ones that determine whether the team finishes over .500 or just wins 79 games again.

I wonder what shitty players Dusty is going to have to respect the fans with next year.
   40. Bunny Vincennes Posted: October 31, 2005 at 10:14 PM (#1713391)
Did Tom Goodwin retire?
   41. Fred Garvin is dead to Mug Posted: October 31, 2005 at 10:48 PM (#1713499)
Potential Cub signings, retread division --

Eli Marrero, of
Scott Sauerbeck, lhp
Geoff Blum, 3b
Bobby Higginson, of
Rondell White, of
Lou Merloni, 3b
Alan Embree, lhp
Ramiro Mendoza, rhp
Felix Rodriguez, rhp
Jay Witasick, rhp
Dave Hansen, 1b
Jeff Nelson, rhp
Doug Brocail, rhp
Richard Hidalgo, of
Royce Clayton, ss
Quinton McCracken, of
Mike DeJean, rhp
Dan Miceli, rhp
Jamey Wright, rhp
Damion Easley, 2b
Juan Encarnacion, of
Mike Mordecai, 3b
Paul Quantrill, rhp
Russ Springer, rhp
Miguel Cairo, 2b
Gerald Williams, of
Abraham Nunez, 3b
Chris Hammond, lhp
Damian Jackson, of
Joe Randa, 3b
Rudy Seanez, rhp
Scott Eyre, lhp
Deivi Cruz, 2b
Joey Eischen, lhp
   42. Fred Garvin is dead to Mug Posted: October 31, 2005 at 10:52 PM (#1713514)
My guess is that the Cubs sign three of these guys, two from the
"overpaid, but borderline competent" division (my guess is Hidalgo and Eyre) and one howler (my guess is Easley).

Place your bets now!
   43. Moses Taylor loves a good maim Posted: October 31, 2005 at 10:54 PM (#1713518)
There's at least 2 or 3 decent bench options on that list (better than the options from last year anyway): Cairo, Randa, and White. Of course, I don't trust any of them on the Cubs with Dusty and a young player with the same position.
   44. Moses Taylor loves a good maim Posted: October 31, 2005 at 10:54 PM (#1713520)
I think the Cubs are much more likely to overpay for a lefty reliever like Marte than sign someone like Eyre (considering the Rusch contract).
   45. Neil M Posted: October 31, 2005 at 11:25 PM (#1713603)
Scott Eyre featured in my 'WTF Managerial Move of the Year' this year, as Felipe Alou out-dumbed Dusty to carry off the prestigious award.

You might recall:

Eyre had come in the previous inning and got his outs. Next Cub inning, Eyre takes the mound. Jody Gerut comes to the plate. Felipe, in his infinite wisdom, spurns the lefty/lefty match-up and pulls Eyre for a RHP. Gerut walks on four pitches.

I still haven't figured out what Old Man Alou was thinking. Or, indeed, if he was thinking.
   46. Pops Freshenmeyer Posted: November 01, 2005 at 03:09 AM (#1714010)
Richard Hidalgo is an excellent guess for right field.

I hope Theo takes that year off and hits the market after the 2006 season.
   47. Bunny Vincennes Posted: November 01, 2005 at 06:14 PM (#1714677)
Eyre had come in the previous inning and got his outs. Next Cub inning, Eyre takes the mound. Jody Gerut comes to the plate. Felipe, in his infinite wisdom, spurns the lefty/lefty match-up and pulls Eyre for a RHP. Gerut walks on four pitches.

Well, there was also the Felipe 5 pitchers in one inning game...
   48. Moses Taylor loves a good maim Posted: November 01, 2005 at 07:39 PM (#1714831)
Well, there was also the Felipe 5 pitchers in one inning game...

Also known as Game 2 of the "Welcome Back Latroy Blow Every Game Series." I think that's also the Maddux 3000K game (I was there).
   49. Bunny Vincennes Posted: November 01, 2005 at 07:58 PM (#1714859)
Also known as Game 2 of the "Welcome Back Latroy Blow Every Game Series." I think that's also the Maddux 3000K game (I was there).

Yep, me too.
   50. Bunny Vincennes Posted: November 01, 2005 at 08:02 PM (#1714865)
Over in the lounge, DTS just posted that the Trib said today that Giles is poised sign with St. Louis and that Hendry is working a deal for Juan Pierre.
   51. Moses Taylor loves a good maim Posted: November 01, 2005 at 08:12 PM (#1714888)
That's a tiny bit more than what the article actually says:

With free-agent right fielder Brian Giles appeared headed for St. Louis, the Cubs are likely to sign or trade for one or possibly two outfielders, depending on the Patterson decision. Florida center fielder Juan Pierre reportedly is on the market, and despite a down year with a .276 average and .326 on-base percentage, his 57 steals and experience as a leadoff man would aid the Cubs.


Linky
   52. Hendry's Wad of Cash (UCCF) Posted: November 01, 2005 at 08:17 PM (#1714898)
Over in the lounge, DTS just posted that the Trib said today that Giles is poised sign with St. Louis and that Hendry is working a deal for Juan Pierre.

Yikes. I guess on the plus side, Pierre's trading value is down after a pretty awful 2005.

Of course, on the minus side Pierre's not that good to begin with. He's Corey Patterson minus the power and strikeouts, plus (at least in theory) a better ability to put the bat on the ball and a more aggressive running presence. If he hits .326 like he did in 2004, then he's got value. If he hits .270 like he did in 2005, then he's just another sub-.700 OPS out sink the Cubs can stick at the top of the lineup to ensure Lee never comes to bat with runners on base.

Remember when we thought the Cubs understood that one of the things they needed to address this offseason was their woeful lack of OBP at the top of the lineup? Yeah, nevermind.

I guess if they get him cheap it's not terrible, outside of the fact that the Cubs will think they've solved their leadoff and top of the order problems when they probably haven't.
   53. Pops Freshenmeyer Posted: November 01, 2005 at 09:38 PM (#1715025)
Remember when we thought the Cubs understood that one of the things they needed to address this offseason was their woeful lack of OBP at the top of the lineup? Yeah, nevermind.

It would be an improvement over Patterson's OBP.

This will cost a boatload of runs on defense. There's a significant chance that Patterson is the better player in 2006.
   54. Andere Richtingen Posted: November 01, 2005 at 09:43 PM (#1715030)
Over in the lounge, DTS just posted that the Trib said today that Giles is poised sign with St. Louis and that Hendry is working a deal for Juan Pierre.

Ridiculous.
   55. Mike Emeigh Posted: November 01, 2005 at 10:16 PM (#1715058)
This will cost a boatload of runs on defense. There's a significant chance that Patterson is the better player in 2006.

Pierre's pretty good defensively, but I think he's probably less valuable to the Cubs than he would be anywhere else. Wrigley will take away the speed doubles and triples that he gets, which is virtually all of his ISO.

-- MWE
   56. Cabbage Posted: November 01, 2005 at 10:41 PM (#1715101)
I'll support a Juan Pierre deal if he agrees to sing The Star Spangled Banner on opening day.

The Cubs would go after Pierre because they want Podsednik-style mojo. They're focusing on what the other team in town is doing. I believe that media reaction to personel decision is going to be extremly important to the front office over the winter.

In other words, they're turning into the Mets.

<drinks>



</Larry Bowa>
   57. Spahn Insane Posted: November 01, 2005 at 10:59 PM (#1715131)
There's a significant chance that Patterson is the better player in 2006.

Yes. And he's cheaper. And we've already got him.

This organization has its head up its arse.
   58. Andere Richtingen Posted: November 01, 2005 at 11:02 PM (#1715137)
The Cubs would go after Pierre because they want Podsednik-style mojo. They're focusing on what the other team in town is doing. I believe that media reaction to personel decision is going to be extremly important to the front office over the winter.

In other words, they're turning into the Mets.


In other words, they don't know what the hell they're doing.

In other news, the sun will be rising in the east tomorrow.
   59. Andere Richtingen Posted: November 01, 2005 at 11:08 PM (#1715145)
The idea of signing Pierre doesn't burn me so much. He's a good player.

But the Cubs need Brian Giles. The Cubs can afford Brian Giles. And Brian Giles is going to St. Louis, with the Cubs aapparently not even in the running.
   60. Cabbage Posted: November 01, 2005 at 11:25 PM (#1715175)
But the Cubs need Brian Giles. The Cubs can afford Brian Giles. And Brian Giles is going to St. Louis, with the Cubs aapparently not even in the running.

Those two years he spent in a different division were refreshing. cripes.

While it is possible, I kinda doubt that Patterson will be better than pierre next year.
   61. Spahn Insane Posted: November 01, 2005 at 11:26 PM (#1715176)
The idea of signing Pierre doesn't burn me so much. He's a good player.

I beg to differ (he's OK in a good year, pretty worthless in his '05 form, but never the sort of player who elevates a team from one level to the next), but I concur in your assessment of the Giles situation.
   62. Pops Freshenmeyer Posted: November 02, 2005 at 12:19 AM (#1715246)
And Brian Giles is going to St. Louis

If he's already described as "going" then it sounds like had his mind made up before the season ended. The problem is that an early exit from the market will turn everyone's attention to the next best player: Furcal.

If the Cubs miss on him... well, I don't want to think about that.
   63. SouthSideRyan Posted: November 02, 2005 at 12:27 AM (#1715253)
And the source on that Giles to St. Louis is Paul Sullivan, doesn't exactly set it in stone.
   64. Andere Richtingen Posted: November 02, 2005 at 12:30 AM (#1715256)
I beg to differ (he's OK in a good year, pretty worthless in his '05 form, but never the sort of player who elevates a team from one level to the next),

I don't think he was worthless, and I think he's good when he's good. Not great, but good, and easily a legitimate part of a championship team. His OBA is almost entirely BA, which is volatile of course, so in an off year BA-wise his OBA is subpar, as it was this year. But as long as his speed is intact, his contact is generally going to give him a .300 BA, which means he's good for a .350 OBA. Add 25 or so net steals and good defense and you've got a good player. I also don't think Wrigley is going to affect his XBH totals: his XBH come mostly from speed, not from a big OF.
   65. Andere Richtingen Posted: November 02, 2005 at 12:31 AM (#1715259)
And the source on that Giles to St. Louis is Paul Sullivan, doesn't exactly set it in stone.

I hope you're right.
   66. dcsmyth1 Posted: November 02, 2005 at 12:59 AM (#1715285)
----"Over in the lounge, DTS just posted that the Trib said today that Giles is poised sign with St. Louis and that Hendry is working a deal for Juan Pierre."

I just got my B James HBook today. the projection for Pierre is .355/.371, which is certainly acceptable for CF and for leadoff. Contrast that with the projection for the incumbent Patterson--.295/.422. Just to make sure you grasp it, the .295 is his OBA, not his BAvg. Here is a cheap alternative to either of these. The projection for the Cubs 21 yr old CF prospect Felix Pie is an impressive .336/.538. And, to back him up and take over in case he underperforms, sign K Lofton, whose projection is .356/.391.

That means they have to get rid of Patterson to the highest bidder.

And also, they need to shore up 1 starting pitcher slot. They have signed G Rusch, but he is not a starter on my team. I say sign AJ Burnett, if his price is reasonable. It should be, given that he has underperformed relative to ability because of injuries. His projection is 210 IP/3.46 ERA. He will be 29 next year, right in his prime. I would try to entice him with a 3 yr deal with playing time incentives built in, but which will reward him handsomely if he stays healthy. That way Rusch can be around to take over in case of Wood's or Burnett's anticipated injury.

Given the expected performance of Cedeno, I think this is a better way to go than signing Furcal.
   67. dcsmyth1 Posted: November 02, 2005 at 01:03 AM (#1715289)
I forgot to post the Cedeno projection. It is .358/.442. Furcal's projection is .354/.418.
   68. Sweet Posted: November 02, 2005 at 05:22 AM (#1715480)
With all due respect to Bill James, if Felix Pie puts up better than an .xxx/.336/.538 line at ANY level next year, I'll be very, very surprised. I see something like .280/.320/.500 for him at Iowa, which is just fine for a 21-year-old. And that Cedeno projection will only happen if he bats over .300, which is possible but implausible.

I'm warming to the idea of another starter, less for this year than for next, when Maddux and Wood may well be gone. But even for this year, I'm not at all sold on Williams and/or Rusch in the 4 and/or 5 slots (with Wood's status up in the air). Williams peripherals with the Cubs were pretty ugly but not entirely out of line with his career numbers. I think his ceiling's much more limited than everyone thought a few years back.

Finally, Giles to the Cardinals, eh? *Sigh* It's depressing to know five months before the season starts that everyone else is playing for second place. But, frankly, why wouldn't you want to play for Cardinals? Great team, new park, good fans, etc. Can't say I blame him.

If we don't get Giles, though, Hendry is going to need to get creative in order to get a big bat into RF. A (Murton - Patterson/Pierre/Pie - non-Giles FA) outfield just isn't going to cut it.
   69. Moses Taylor loves a good maim Posted: November 02, 2005 at 03:19 PM (#1715788)
Everybody is still getting *WAY* ahead of themselves assuming Giles is going to St. Louis. The ONLY source right now is a throw-away line in a complete unsubstanciated Sullivan article (he doesn't even use "unnamed sources.)

Now, is it likely Giles ends up there? Maybe. But it's most definitely not a foregone conclusion.

You know, I did link to the article right after Jack's 3rd hand info post.
   70. Andere Richtingen Posted: November 02, 2005 at 03:34 PM (#1715829)
In the Sullivan article is a statement by Hendry regarding his starting pitching plan:

Despite bringing back Rusch, the Cubs still are intrigued by the possibility of adding another power arm like Burnett. After back-to-back springs dealing with injuries to Kerry Wood and Mark Prior, and with Wood coming off shoulder surgery in September, Hendry wants six quality starters going into Arizona next February.

"I am not going to be caught short," Hendry said. "We've had good health reports on everyone, but I'm not going to take a chance of going to spring training and someone goes down. Or there's a snag in someone's rehab. Or so-and-so is off to a bad start."


I can't fault that thinking, I suppose. However, by my count, Prior-Zambrano-Maddux-Wood-Rusch-Williams total six.
   71. Fred Garvin is dead to Mug Posted: November 02, 2005 at 04:03 PM (#1715886)
I don't fault the "get as many potential starters as possible" thinking either -- especially considering that both Prior and Wood went down last year, leaving the Cubs to mess with the likes of John Koronka (and Andy MacPhail looking really stupid in explaining that they need to get more depth).

As for Pierre, ugh. Count me as unimpressed. I don't know what his contract situation is, but if the Cubs get him and he's signed beyond 2006, that would be even worse.

The Cubs have to traverse some very tricky waters this off-season. I'm ok with the minor moves they've made so far, but from the standpoint of my personal motivation, if the next move they announce is a deal for Juan Pierre, it's gonna take a lot for me to be excited about this team.

Viva la Devil Rays!
   72. Moses Taylor loves a good maim Posted: November 02, 2005 at 04:47 PM (#1715987)
Viva la Devil Rays!

I'm hopping on the bandwagon with you. I came out in the Hunsicker to the Rays thread.

--------------------------------------------------------

According to this site (which appears to be updated), Pierre's contract was up this offseason (but he's probably due a raise), but he's still in arbitration (he's a FA after 2006).
   73. Fred Garvin is dead to Mug Posted: November 02, 2005 at 05:04 PM (#1716022)
Cross-posted:

Welcome!

Defectors of record (or at least Cub Primates who have voiced support for AL teams) --

Andere Richtingen -- Angels
Retro-Shiite -- Indians
Jack Vincennes -- A's
deJesusFreak -- Devil Rays
Moses Taylor -- Devil Rays


Am I missing anyone? UCCF, maybe?
   74. Cabbage Posted: November 02, 2005 at 05:36 PM (#1716074)
Am I missing anyone? UCCF, maybe?

Cabbage -- A's**

**I never read Moneyball. Following the Cubs and their craptastic retread veteran parade has made me a big fan of the younger baseball teams. I also like the yellow and green scheme.
   75. Dan Szymborski Posted: November 02, 2005 at 05:42 PM (#1716094)
With all due respect to Bill James, if Felix Pie puts up better than an .xxx/.336/.538 line at ANY level next year, I'll be very, very surprised. I see something like .280/.320/.500 for him at Iowa, which is just fine for a 21-year-old. And that Cedeno projection will only happen if he bats over .300, which is possible but implausible.

Our Patterson and Pie projections are very close (Patterson practically identical). I always wonder how James is treating low minor performance - Pie's projection is really going out on the limb and he's even more optimistic than ZiPS on Cedeno (ZiPS has 273/319/409 for Pie and 287/332/412 for Cedeno).
   76. Hendry's Wad of Cash (UCCF) Posted: November 02, 2005 at 05:46 PM (#1716105)
I don't have any particular affinity for any AL teams, though I find Cleveland very exciting and the kind of team I wish the Cubs had - a lot of good young players being allowed to play.

I could root for the Indians in addition to my Cubfannery. I'm also interested to see what happens in Tampa Bay over the next few years. It would take Cub-like performance from the GM and manager to screw up a system that loaded with potential impact players.
   77. Bunny Vincennes Posted: November 02, 2005 at 05:50 PM (#1716119)
You know, I did link to the article right after Jack's 3rd hand info post.

Dude, that was my Gammons moment! I should have preficed it with, "A baseball insider posted the following..."

I'm digging the A's a lot. They should feature the elephant logo more though.
   78. Hendry's Wad of Cash (UCCF) Posted: November 02, 2005 at 05:52 PM (#1716122)
Our Patterson and Pie projections are very close (Patterson practically identical). I always wonder how James is treating low minor performance - Pie's projection is really going out on the limb and he's even more optimistic than ZiPS on Cedeno (ZiPS has 273/319/409 for Pie and 287/332/412 for Cedeno).

The James' Pie projection is nuts. The guy has played about 60 games above the A-ball level and he's still got terrible plate discipline. There's no possible way he'd step in this year and put up an .875 OPS (that's Rookie of the Year stuff). I could buy the ZiPS projection, though I'd still call it on the optimistic side. He needs a year at AAA, and they're just going down the Corey Patterson road of destruction by even considering him as the starting CF for 2006.

I think either Cedeno projection (the 332/412 ZiPS and 358/442 for James) could happen. And either way, he's a better option than Perez or Macias, whether starting full time or on the bench behind Furcal/Walker and getting 20-40 starts and maybe 200-300 PAs for the season.
   79. Spahn Insane Posted: November 02, 2005 at 05:59 PM (#1716150)
Where the hell are those James projections coming from? I think Cedeno's probably about ready (at worst, he'll be Neifi Perez), but I can't buy a projection system that pegs him as Rafael Furcal's equal right now. I'd love to believe the Pie projection, but come on.
   80. Sweet Posted: November 02, 2005 at 06:06 PM (#1716170)
I'm exploring the idea of latching on to an AL team. I rooted for Cleveland down the stretch and enjoyed it. A good friend is a Royals fan, and I'd consider them if only they didn't suck so hard. I like the Tigers unis and saw one of the final games at old Tiger Stadium, so there's that. None of the teams in the East or West does much for me. Maybe Seattle.

Anyway, still developing. . . .
   81. Bunny Vincennes Posted: November 02, 2005 at 06:13 PM (#1716195)
I've been seen wearing a 1956 Red Sox cap lately, also. I'm still boycotting the wearing of the Cubs logo until I am satisfied that someone in management is trying.
   82. Fred Garvin is dead to Mug Posted: November 02, 2005 at 06:24 PM (#1716232)
Even I have faith that they are trying . . . to do exactly what, I'm not sure at this point (which is why I need some form of reassurance this winter).
   83. Andere Richtingen Posted: November 03, 2005 at 02:55 PM (#1717464)
Paul Sullivan's Tribune article makes it sound like the Cubs are in a good position to get Furcal. He of course has to name some lame statistics suggesting that Furcal is a poor hitter on the road (actually, he has shown a strong home/road split) and in day games (which his career stats do NOT support).
   84. Slivers of Maranville descends into chaos (SdeB) Posted: November 03, 2005 at 04:02 PM (#1717566)
>I can't fault that thinking, I suppose. However, by my count, Prior-Zambrano-Maddux-Wood-Rusch-Williams total six.

Maybe Hendry is planning on starting Wood (and Rusch?) in the bullpen, moving them to the rotation if (when) someone gets hurt.
   85. Spahn Insane Posted: November 03, 2005 at 04:24 PM (#1717600)

Paul Sullivan's Tribune article makes it sound like the Cubs are in a good position to get Furcal.


Of course, the very first thing the article cites in the Cubs' favor is Furcal's closeness to Neifi Perez.
   86. Pops Freshenmeyer Posted: November 03, 2005 at 04:34 PM (#1717613)
Of course, the very first thing the article cites in the Cubs' favor is Furcal's closeness to Neifi Perez.

You don't understand. The Cubs gave Neifi all those starts so he would praise them to Furcal. Hendry and Baker threw in the towel for 2005 to make their big run in 2006.
   87. Bunny Vincennes Posted: November 03, 2005 at 04:50 PM (#1717628)
Maybe Hendry is planning on starting Wood (and Rusch?) in the bullpen, moving them to the rotation if (when) someone gets hurt.

This is not a bad idea actually. And it might provide them with some deadline trade material.
   88. Moses Taylor loves a good maim Posted: November 03, 2005 at 05:49 PM (#1717743)
From the article:

If they sign Furcal, the Cubs likely would move Ronny Cedeno to second base and begin shopping Todd Walker, whose $2.5 million option was picked up last week. Furcal's past is somewhat problematic, but the Cubs have investigated and are not backing away.

Not sure I like this idea unless we know both Macias and Neifi are nowhere near the team. I'm not sure how much the Cubs could get for Walker (if he's part of a larger deal for a stuf OF, I can see). I think that ideally the Cubs MI situation has Furcal, Walker, Cedeno, and Hairston all involved. One of them needs to learn how to play 3b (or re-learn or practice or whatever) for the inevitable week off Ramirez is going to need.
   89. Hendry's Wad of Cash (UCCF) Posted: November 03, 2005 at 06:03 PM (#1717771)
I think that ideally the Cubs MI situation has Furcal, Walker, Cedeno, and Hairston all involved. One of them needs to learn how to play 3b (or re-learn or practice or whatever) for the inevitable week off Ramirez is going to need.

This would be my plan as well. If you figure 13 roster spots for non pitchers:

Barrett, Blanco

Lee
Ramirez
Furcal
Walker
Cedeno
Hairston

Murton
Patterson/Pierre
new RF
reserve OF
reserve OF

Who am I forgetting in that outfield? Do we really only have two players? Geez, that's pathetic. I guess Grieve could be one spot, assuming he's still under contract. Hairston gives them some extra OF flexibility, but knowing Dusty he'd want *another* utility guy for his ill-fated double switches in the infield. Though really, you're not going to double-switch out Ramirez, Furcal, or Lee, so how many second basemen do you need?

Or I guess call Hairston one of the reserve OFs and call up Fontenot as the utility infielder.
   90. Moses Taylor loves a good maim Posted: November 03, 2005 at 06:18 PM (#1717801)
Or I guess call Hairston one of the reserve OFs and call up Fontenot as the utility infielder.

Well, Walker could probably also fill in for the LF at some point. But Fontenot is a good idea, he also helps with the "able to play 3b" part. Maybe Greenberg is an option as a reserve (if nothing else, he could PR and be a defensive replacement).
   91. Ivan Grushenko of Hong Kong Posted: November 03, 2005 at 06:41 PM (#1717848)
Potential Cub signings, retread division --

Jay Witasick, rhp


Jay signed with the A's for 2 years. But I'm hoping he's available for trade.
   92. Neil M Posted: November 03, 2005 at 07:58 PM (#1717986)
<i>Maybe Greenberg is an option as a reserve (if nothing else, he could PR and be a defensive replacement).</i?

Worth noting that he's playing CF and batting lead-off in the Venezualan league this fall. He could be a fifith outfielder.

WRT Hairston, I'd rather pass on him. To me, he's a poor attempt at style over substance, blessed with a Farnsworthesque brain. OTOH, next to Macias and Neifi, he's the least of 3 evils - though not by much.
   93. Pops Freshenmeyer Posted: November 03, 2005 at 08:02 PM (#1717992)
Or I guess call Hairston one of the reserve OFs and call up Fontenot as the utility infielder.

I am still of the opinion that Hairston will be gone. He's unhappy in the reserve role and the Cubs don't seem to like him very much. I'm sure he could start at 2B somewhere.

Worth noting that he's playing CF and batting lead-off in the Venezualan league this fall. He could be a fifith outfielder.

If he can plan an adequate CF he would be alright in that role.
   94. Moses Taylor loves a good maim Posted: November 03, 2005 at 08:53 PM (#1718060)
I just heard an interview with Michael Barrett on the Score (with Boers and Bernstein). I honestly think he's my favorite Cub player right now.

He didn't hold anything back, he was completely honest throughout the entire thing. He said he was defnitely upset the Sox won before the Cubs, but he said it was obvious why they did. He kept talking about how few mistakes they made (he thought they were the best baserunning-first to third-team they played all year). He mentioned several times how good of a job Ozzie did and how well everyone played for him (I don't think they were stabs at Dusty at all, so he's clearly good at the PR side of it too).

They asked him about Oswalt, and he said he thought that Roy definitely hit Crede in game 3. He said he didn't think Roy cares about how big the game is; he said he's shown his true colors and does it all the time. He said he's shocked that Oswalt hasn't been suspended yet for throwing at guys; but he said he didn't want to call him a headhunter, but that he's definitely earned a reputation. He then said Carlos has to worry about repurcussions every time he throws behind a guy.

Basically, I think he'd make a great manager. He also said he thought Garner should have had Lidge close out game 6 of the NLCS, just for Lidge's mental health.

Great, great interview.
   95. Hendry's Wad of Cash (UCCF) Posted: November 03, 2005 at 10:35 PM (#1718253)
Basically, I think he'd make a great manager.

Who's the last player-manager in the bigs? Pete Rose? And then Don Kessinger before that?

Barrett for manager!
   96. Cabbage Posted: November 04, 2005 at 02:54 AM (#1718481)
Barrett for manager!

This is the best idea I've ever heard.

BTW UCCF, I'm going to apply to your alma mater's law school. I'm reasonably confidant that my attempts to get into Wash U are nothing more than a pipe dream... but then again I'm a Cubs fan. Ridiculous odds will never get me down!
   97. Hendry's Wad of Cash (UCCF) Posted: November 04, 2005 at 03:21 PM (#1718823)
BTW UCCF, I'm going to apply to your alma mater's law school. I'm reasonably confidant that my attempts to get into Wash U are nothing more than a pipe dream... but then again I'm a Cubs fan. Ridiculous odds will never get me down!

Cool. When I was there, they had this great funky law school building that was the result of a student winning a design contest back in the 1970s. It was this huge concrete thing, totally out of place on campus, and everyone but me hated it. So they replaced it with a building that looks just like all the other ones on campus (though it is very nice).

Good luck. Wash. U. (and the whole UCity/Clayton/Central West End area) is a great place to spend time with only student obligations weighing you down. I came *thisclose* to picking Wash U for law school over Iowa, but they wouldn't pony up the scholarship money that Iowa did.
   98. Spahn Insane Posted: November 04, 2005 at 04:08 PM (#1718912)
Who's the last player-manager in the bigs? Pete Rose? And then Don Kessinger before that?

Frank Robinson?
   99. Hendry's Wad of Cash (UCCF) Posted: November 04, 2005 at 04:14 PM (#1718921)
Robinson would have been before Kessinger and Rose.

I wonder why player-managers went out of fashion. There's no real reason to think that a player can't be a good manager. Did the requirements of the job change so much with the advent of things like free agency, the salary boom, the MLBPA, etc. that it's just no longer feasible, or are teams just much more conservative now and unwilling to subject themselves to the media scrutiny that would surely result from replacing an old-school manager with a 30-year-old catcher?
   100. Fred Garvin is dead to Mug Posted: November 04, 2005 at 05:16 PM (#1719034)
Did the requirements of the job change so much with the advent of things like free agency, the salary boom, the MLBPA, etc. that it's just no longer feasible . . .

Perhaps. It is a much different world today than in the '80s, much less the '70s or earlier.


. . . or are teams just much more conservative now and unwilling to subject themselves to the media scrutiny that would surely result from replacing an old-school manager with a 30-year-old catcher?

I think this is more the case. Take the Cubs -- if they replaced Dusty with Michael Barrett, there would be no shortage of stories about how this is as much of a farce as the College of Coaches, etc. This is a franchise that tends to bristle at the notion of performance-based analysis; to think they are going to to do anything as radical as a player-manager is silly.

OTOH, there are a few organizations that may push the envelope. The Devil Rays, for instance, did not hire Gerry Hunsiker to be the GM; they plan to do away with the notion of a "general manager" and have Hunsiker compliment and serve as a mentor to Andrew Friedman.
Page 1 of 2 pages  1 2 > 

You must be Registered and Logged In to post comments.

 

 

<< Back to main

BBTF Partner

Dynasty League Baseball

Support BBTF

donate

Thanks to
Sheer Tim Foli
for his generous support.

Bookmarks

You must be logged in to view your Bookmarks.

Hot Topics

Syndicate

Page rendered in 0.5207 seconds
35 querie(s) executed