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   1. Andere Richtingen Posted: June 22, 2006 at 07:03 PM (#2072514)
I have no problem with the Cubs bringing up Hill and using him as a starter, but I consider it playing out the clock. I think he's a one-trick pony and will never be anything more than a marginal major leaguer.
   2. Hendry's Wad of Cash (UCCF) Posted: June 22, 2006 at 07:07 PM (#2072520)
Santana vs the Cubs should be one of the bigger mismatches of the season. We haven't hit lefties all year, and he may be the best in the game.

I'm not entirely sure the Cubs haven't given up on Hill. Sending him to AAA again and again is pointless - we all know he can dominate there. Either you give him a shot at the majors or you just accept that you don't think he can cut it. Calling him up for 1 start and a couple of relief appearances and sitting on the bench 70% of the time doesn't really do anything either. Given all of the starting pitching problems we've had this year, I'm still surprised that they're more than willing to give Glendon Rusch multiple chances to give up more HRs than IP, but they're not willing to let guys like Hill and Williams pitch every fifth day for more than a couple of weeks at a time. It's just baffling.
   3. Fred Garvin is dead to Mug Posted: June 22, 2006 at 07:14 PM (#2072522)
Given all of the starting pitching problems we've had this year, I'm still surprised that they're more than willing to give Glendon Rusch multiple chances to give up more HRs than IP, but they're not willing to let guys like Hill and Williams pitch every fifth day for more than a couple of weeks at a time. It's just baffling.

Not really. Glendon Rusch has over 8 years of MLB experience and is earning $6mm over this and next season. Rich Hill and Jerome Williams make the minimum and have option(s) left for this season.
   4. Hendry's Wad of Cash (UCCF) Posted: June 22, 2006 at 07:24 PM (#2072532)
Not really. Glendon Rusch has over 8 years of MLB experience and is earning $6mm over this and next season. Rich Hill and Jerome Williams make the minimum and have option(s) left for this season.

Yeah, but those are bad reasons. Just because someone is getting a big check doesn't mean you have to keep him in the rotation or even on the team. Why compound the mistake of giving Rusch a big contract by letting him throw as many bad innings as possible? It's like compounding the signing (and resigning) of Neifi Perez by putting him in the lineup and batting him at the top of the order.

Case in point - Jason Johnson. $4M this year with options and incentives that could have taken it over $11M. But he stunk up the joint, and the team dumped him. Where is that attitude on the Cubs? For us, no matter how much you suck your job is safe - unless you're a rookie, in which case you should always keep one eye over your shoulder for the next worthless veteran signing that will put you on the first plane back to Iowa.

*throws chair*
*throws multiple chairs*
*clubs baby seal*

Grrr.
   5. Cooper Teenoh Posted: June 22, 2006 at 07:47 PM (#2072549)
I'm so glad you clubbed that baby seal, UCCF. That saved Jim Hendry the effort of having to send him back to Iowa in favor of the 10-year-old elephant seal.
   6. Garth found his way to daylight Posted: June 22, 2006 at 08:06 PM (#2072570)
Rich Hill twirled seven scoreless innings last night against Omaha (who, at 28-44, are following in their big league club’s steps admirably).

Come on, now. Is the Royals joke needed? The future's all we got. Well, there's always Wichita.
   7. Fred Garvin is dead to Mug Posted: June 22, 2006 at 08:19 PM (#2072583)
Yeah, but those are bad reasons. Just because someone is getting a big check doesn't mean you have to keep him in the rotation or even on the team.

Are we watching the same organization?

You began this by saying you're surprised that Rusch is getting all these chances, saying that it's baffling. Given this organization, I don't believe it's baffling in the least.

I also don't believe it's right either, but that's beside the point (and certainly beside any moves Hendry has made in nearly two years).
   8. Hendry's Wad of Cash (UCCF) Posted: June 22, 2006 at 08:33 PM (#2072593)
Ah, well that's a good point. I guess by "baffling" I was implying some sort of logical basis grounded in reality that is absent in many things the Cubs do.

I'm not really surprised so much as bitterly disappointed and bitterly angry and bitterly bitter.
   9. Luke Jasenosky Posted: June 22, 2006 at 08:58 PM (#2072614)
Come on, now. Is the Royals joke needed? The future's all we got. Well, there's always Wichita.

I empathize, but, as a Cub fan, I feel I have the right to make fun of the Royals, especially as they are neck and neck with us in offensive futility. Neifi (a former Royal I'm sorry to remind you) might have changed all that, though, with his five total bases last night! That guarantees at least twenty starts in the two-hole for sure!

As for Hill, you are right that he dominated PCL hitters last year as well. It's interesting, however, that he's even better this year - a lower WHIP and significantly lower homer rate. Heck, if and when Hill returns to Chicago, he should probably pack Alan Dunn into his suitcase.

By the way, Juan Pierre has moved up to fifth on the Hacking Mass Index. I'm going to a Cubs-Brewers game two weeks from Saturday and I'm tempted to bring a Juan Hack-o-meter to the game.
   10. McCoy Posted: June 23, 2006 at 04:42 AM (#2073023)
I'm going to the Thursday game, I'm still bitterly pi**ed off at Latroy Hawkins for costing me a shot to see Greg Maddux' 300th win. Instead I get to see his 299th. I'm also pi**ed off at Zeus for costing me a shot at seeing Maddux' 3000th strikeout as well. It wasn't a good year.
   11. Fred Garvin is dead to Mug Posted: June 23, 2006 at 07:00 AM (#2073081)
Ah, well that's a good point. I guess by "baffling" I was implying some sort of logical basis grounded in reality that is absent in many things the Cubs do.

That's the rub -- if the D-Backs can waive Russ Ortiz, swallowing nearly $22 million in the process, can/will the Cubs cut bait on:

* Rusch's contract (which probably has ~$5mm outstanding)?

* Neifi's contract (which probably has ~$4mm outstanding)?

* Wood's contract (which probably has ~$6mm outstanding this season) -- who may be done this season anyway, and whose option they surely won't exercise?

* Pierre's contract (which probably has ~$3mm outstanding) -- if they can't trade him?

I don't see them cutting bait on any of these guys, even if the money is much lower than the Ortiz obligation. Why? Two reasons: (1) this is the Cubs; and (2) the idiot who made these signings is still in the GMs role.
   12. Andere Richtingen Posted: June 23, 2006 at 12:25 PM (#2073121)
* Rusch's contract (which probably has ~$5mm outstanding)?

I think they can trade Rusch, believe it or not. He's left-handed. Eventually he'll put two consecutive quality starts together and someone will take him.

* Neifi's contract (which probably has ~$4mm outstanding)?

See your last comment. Is there any indication that Hendry doesn't think Neifi is doing a heckuva job?

* Wood's contract (which probably has ~$6mm outstanding this season) -- who may be done this season anyway, and whose option they surely won't exercise?

There's little use in waiving him.

* Pierre's contract (which probably has ~$3mm outstanding) -- if they can't trade him?

See your last comment again.

I don't see them cutting bait on any of these guys, even if the money is much lower than the Ortiz obligation. Why? Two reasons: (1) this is the Cubs; and (2) the idiot who made these signings is still in the GMs role.
   13. And You Thought Zonk Was Terminated? Posted: June 23, 2006 at 01:04 PM (#2073147)
Everyone seems to be missing the point -- Carlos Zambrano has nicely settled in the same role Greg Maddux occupied in the first few years of the 90s, reliable, always-healthy, workhorse ace... on a really shitty team. So... do you think he'll enjoy Atlanta?
   14. Andere Richtingen Posted: June 23, 2006 at 01:40 PM (#2073174)
Everyone seems to be missing the point -- Carlos Zambrano has nicely settled in the same role Greg Maddux occupied in the first few years of the 90s, reliable, always-healthy, workhorse ace... on a really shitty team. So... do you think he'll enjoy Atlanta?

The Cubs will break the bank to keep Zambrano through 2010 at least, if not during this season then in the off-season. I expect it to happen during this season.
   15. Mike Emeigh Posted: June 23, 2006 at 02:31 PM (#2073200)
Good news on the horizon, though...Derrek Lee will be reporting to Iowa for rehab this weekend, the exact date and expected length of stay TBA.

-- MWE
   16. Fred Garvin is dead to Mug Posted: June 23, 2006 at 02:52 PM (#2073212)
* Wood's contract (which probably has ~$6mm outstanding this season) -- who may be done this season anyway, and whose option they surely won't exercise?

--There's little use in waiving him.


I can think of at least two reasons, both admittedly minor and relatively insignificant: (1) to free up a roster spot; and (2) to make a dramatic break from the past and signal that the franchise is turning a new direction.

Still, my greater point on all these guys, as you recognize, is that even if the Cubs *could* move their contracts, they surely won't do so -- mainly because the guy who acquired these contracts still stands behind them.
   17. God can’t be all that impressed with Charles S. Posted: June 23, 2006 at 03:01 PM (#2073221)
can/will the Cubs cut bait on:

* Rusch's contract (which probably has ~$5mm outstanding)?

* Neifi's contract (which probably has ~$4mm outstanding)?

* Wood's contract (which probably has ~$6mm outstanding this season) -- who may be done this season anyway, and whose option they surely won't exercise?

* Pierre's contract (which probably has ~$3mm outstanding) -- if they can't trade him?


Hendry's contract (which probably has ~$4mm oustanding)?
   18. And You Thought Zonk Was Terminated? Posted: June 23, 2006 at 04:28 PM (#2073321)
The downside to DFA'ing Wood is that really, I think it's a pretty classless move.

Wood hasn't been awful - just constantly hurt. Simply DFA'ing him in some sort of hissy fit, I think, serves no purpose other than making the team look petty (which might have ripple effects among players the Cubs want to resign and sign. So far as I know, Woody is pretty well liked in the clubhouse).

If the roster spot is that needed - and if Wood's correct that his season may be over - there's always the 60 day DL to free up the spot. The Cubs are stuck paying his salary anyway you slice it.
   19. And You Thought Zonk Was Terminated? Posted: June 23, 2006 at 04:32 PM (#2073327)
The Cubs will break the bank to keep Zambrano through 2010 at least, if not during this season then in the off-season. I expect it to happen during this season.

Sooo.... what does that cost? I think a deal through 2010 would cover Z's final 2 arb years + 2 more. Does 12 mil get it done? 15?

Ordinarily, I'd be nervous about an 50-60-70 mil contract for a pitcher, but I think Zambrano is one of the few pitchers --- maybe in all of baseball --- I feel comfortable doing it with.

Man, oh man is that guy a horse. I think he's truly a Randy Johnson or Livan Hernandez type freak of nature so far as workload and durability go.
   20. Hendry's Wad of Cash (UCCF) Posted: June 23, 2006 at 06:09 PM (#2073443)
I think he's truly a Randy Johnson or Livan Hernandez type freak of nature so far as workload and durability go.

He's got that thick torso and those big legs. To pick an ex-Cub who was pretty durable in his day, he's built a little like Rick Reuschel (but bigger).

I'd give 4/$50M for Zambrano right now, without thinking twice about it, to sign him through 2010. I'd throw in a 5th year as an option as well. Sometimes it's easy to forget that the guy just turned 25 this month - signing him for 5 years only takes us through his age 30 season.

If he stays healthy - and I guess this will be a good case for those who theorize that big workloads at a young age can wear a pitcher down - his age 26-30 seasons should be dynamite.
   21. Andere Richtingen Posted: June 23, 2006 at 06:11 PM (#2073446)
Does 12 mil get it done? 15?

I think next year would be Zambrano's last arb year. Anyway, 12, ratcheting it up to 15? He's probably not worth it, but at least he's young and has shown a remarkable level of durability (in the sense that Dusty has put him through the shredder and he hasn't lost anything).

The downside to DFA'ing Wood is that really, I think it's a pretty classless move.

It would almost certainly be perceived that way.
   22. Fred Garvin is dead to Mug Posted: June 23, 2006 at 06:20 PM (#2073458)
I agree that there is really little reason to waive/release Wood midseason. I was really just (shortsightedly) pointing out the fact that the team is on the hook for millions that they won't get any value for.

I also agree that waiving/releasing him at this point would certainly be viewed as a classless, spiteful move and rightly so.

OTOH, the real test will be what happens in the offseason. Assuming the Cubs don't exercise the option, will they try to negotiate a smaller deal or will they simply cut bait and let him go?

If the Cubs don't bring him back next year, I frankly think that the vast majority of Cubs fans will consider it just as classless and offensive, regardless of the financial considerations.
   23. JPWF13 Posted: June 23, 2006 at 06:22 PM (#2073461)
If there was ever a pitcher that a team should put in long relief and let him get his feet on the ground it's Hill

he just looks like someone who so far gets totally psyched out pitching in the majors, put him in th pen and let him pitch in blowouts until he accepts that he really is an MLB pitcher

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