Monday, February 28, 2005

Just Another Sign

Outfielder Jason Dubois needs to get Baker's attention with his bat once Cactus League play opens Thursday.

"You don't even know he's around half the time," Baker said. "He's extremely quiet."

If Dave Kelton outplays Dubois this spring, he could have the edge in making the team.

"Dubois has options and Kelton doesn't, so we have a decision to make at the end of spring training," Baker said.

Let's see, spring training games have not even started yet and Dubois chances of playing are going down faster than the stock market in the great depression. It is like Baker does not even want Dubois to make the team, much less even get a chance to play. Naw, can't be.

Sunday, February 27, 2005

And Back to Cubs Baseball

Interesting news regarding who is going to play where. One not surprising, the other pretty surprising.

First off Hairston it looks like will be the back up OFer to Holly.

Like the small clip says this is not good news for Dubois. But who in their right mind actually thought Dubois would even sniff any significant playing time with Baker as our manager?

The other little news is Ryan Dempster being groomed for the 5th starter.

Ok so this must mean Borowski is looking better than anyone expected? I hope so.

Thursday, February 17, 2005

Roto League Year #2

I will be running a Rotissere style fantasy baseball league again this year. My second place (or was it 3rd?) finish will be avenged. Prior deciding to sit on the disable list most of the year and Johan Santana throwing like Farnsworth will not hold me back again, lol!

Again I ask for people who will stick around for the whole season and who will show up on draft day. Draft day is a hell of a lot more fun when 80+% of the owners show up and you get to mock each other for the dumb draft picks they make.

Scoring positions -
1 - Catcher
1 - 1b
1 - 2b
1 - 3b
1 - ss
1 - inf
3 - OF
1 - any batter

4 - Starting pitchers
2 - bullpen
2 - any type pitcher

2 - DL spots
6 - Bench

Categories being scored in - R, HR, RBI, SB, BB, K, AVG, W, SV, BB, K, HLD, ERA, WHIP

Got some negative categories to watch out for. K's for hitters and BB for pitchers. Also I like to incorporate holds into the picture to make super setup men a valuable player to have. Last year I had Francisco Rodriguez and Brad Lidge, those 2 guys gave me 280 SO's for about 178 innings of work.

Draft day as usual will fall on a weekend. Sunday, March 27th at 12:45 P.M. is draft day. Leave a comment if your interested, again only serious players who will play the entire season. I will give out league ID and password individually.

Thank god Spring Training is finally upon us!

Saturday, February 12, 2005

Looking Ahead

I have been lazy the last week and failed to comment on the Farnsworth trade. I can't really bring anything new to the table to discuss about the trade, only that I am glad he is gone. Tired of wondering whether the bad or good Farnsworth would show up from game to game. Tired of hearing all the clueless Cub fans saying he should be our closer because he can throw 100 MPH. These are the same Cub fans who watched him fail miserably on atleast 3-4 seperate occasions when he was all but named the closer.

He didn't bring us Danny Kolb, or Aubrey Huff or even Octavio Dotel. In the end Farns brought us Navarro who scouts say has a lively fastball but that is about it. Sounds like a youger Farnsworth doesn't it? The other two minor leaguers are rated so poorly that they have virtually no chance to make the Cubs this year or 2-3 years from now. I loved to hear how Farnsworth's name was always mentioned with Kolb, Huff, and Dotel because Cubs fans naturally inflated the value of Kyle.

Still the Dotel rumor will not die. Nothing is out of the realm of possibility. But the one point I argue over and over on the Cub Reporter is that the Cubs have nothing the A's want. They are just not going to trade him for prospects. Oakland has lots of good pitching prospects. So much like the Huff, Kolb rumors and the Beltran, Magglio deals the Cubs are not even on the radar.

The way I see it, there is only one possibility of improving the bullpen before the season starts with a quality player. And that is with Byung Yun Kim of the Redsox. The good and the bad...

If Kim shows a marked improvement in his pitching and attitude, the Sox will probably keep him. If not, the right-hander will be sent elsewhere....

Kim is a headcase. But it revolves around his desire to be a starter. In his country being in the bullpen is kind like a dis-honor, it means your not a good enough pitcher. That is the chip on his shoulder since he has come to the majors with the D-backs. I believe he is very unhappy with the Redsox because when he was traded to them they assured him he would remain a starter. They quickly fell back on that promise. It is not like Kim is a horrible starter either. 15 career starts 3.77 ERA, .237 OBAA.

It is hard to believe but Kim is only 26 years old, his best years are still ahead of him. I think as he matures more and understands that being in the bullpen in american baseball can actually be a good thing he will accept it and become a star. If I was Jim Hendry I would be seeing what the Redsox want for him and keep a close eye on him during spring training. A fresh start with a new ballclub that hasn't promised him anything would probably improve his attitude alot. But it must be made clear if he was ever traded to the Cubs, that we need a closer, and Kim himself would be one of the top choices to fill that void.

Kim is another one of my favorite players like Nomar and Walker(Why are they always Redsox or get traded to the Redsox? I like Schilling alot also -shakes head-). Kim is alot like Keith Foulke(another Redsox, wtf) where he can go more than 1 inning for a save, which makes him more versatile and available in tricky situations earlier. Kim should be an option the Cubs can't afford to ignore. Hey it's better than Dempster or Robb Nenn, lol.

Saturday, February 05, 2005

Creative Deal Making

The Tiger's have signed Magglio Ordonez...

The Detroit Tigers snared the last remaining premiere free agent of the offseason, agreeing to a $75 million, five-year contract with outfielder Magglio Ordonez, a baseball source said Saturday.

Ordonez's deal could be worth up to $105 million over seven seasons, the source told the Associated Press on the condition of anonymity.

Oh, but the Tigers are stupid now because Magglio's knee injury may be the end of his career right?

Under the complicated deal, Detroit would have the right to void the contract after the 2005 season if Ordonez has a recurrence of the left knee injury that hampered his production with the Chicago White Sox for most of last year, and the recurrence lands him on the disabled list for 25 days or more.

The 31-year-old Ordonez gets a $6 million signing bonus and a $6 million salary in 2005, meaning the Tigers' exposure is $12 million.

These are the things creative GM's work out. Are you paying attention Jim Hendry? If you were so worried about Magglio's knee would it have been so hard to hammer out a clause in the contract as the Tigers did?

I knew Magglio was not going to get less than J.D. Drew in over all money. Drew has been injured most of his career and last year was the only year he went most of the season without getting injured. Magglio has had a very impressive career and this knee injury is his first major injury ever. Magglio was getting paid one way or another, only delusional Cubs fans thought he could be had on the cheap.

I know most Cubs fans would balk at the rest of the contract of $15 million per year, but if fully recovered Magglio is worth that kind of money. The Cubs offered $75 million for 5 years on Beltran. I don't see why Hendry could not of worked out the same kind of money for Magglio and inserted a clause like the Tiger's did to take some risk out of the deal.

Well ofcourse this would assume that the Cubs were actually serious about getting Beltran/the offensive upgrade. I think it is safe to assume the Cubs were never serious about upgrading the offense in any way this off-season. It was strictly a P.R. move by Cubs management.

Another Dump Job

Yep time to get rid of Kyle Farnsworth now...

Farnsworth could be dealt for another major-league reliever, and other scenarios have the Cubs landing two or three prospects for the strong-armed but enigmatic 28-year-old.

If the Cubs are silly enough to think they will get two or three prospects for Farnsworth, then he will remain a Cub.

Why do the Cubs think they can get so much in return?

As much criticism as Farnsworth has received, however, the Cubs won't trade him just to cut ties. Pitchers who throw 97 to 99 mph on a consistent basis are not easily parted with.

Wrong! Wrong! Throwing 99 MPH means nothing if you have no brain. The problem with Farnsworth is that he has no movement on his pitches. His 100 MPH fast-ball is straight as an arrow, making it extremly easy to tee of on him. Farnsworth's value is nil. You think he might of learned something from Maddux who knows what movement on pitches is all about. But he didn't.

Maybe another team can turn around Farnsworth, but they will not give up multiple prospects or any worthwhile proven major leaguer for him. The team getting Farnsworth will be getting a mental case. We know Farnsworth is a mental case, so do the other teams in MLB.

Friday, February 04, 2005


The Cubs Blogger Army is multiplying like rabbits.

This time last year I think the CBA was second behind the Yankee's in total blogs, with around 30. Now there are 82? My god. And the Redsox are are all the way up to 73 blogs.

I can understand Redsox fans wanting to blog more after a World Series win. But why are there more Cubs bloggers now? Maybe they are a tad upset about last season and want to vent, I don't know.

Time will tell how many will actually stick around. The best thing for new bloggers is don't feel compelled to write something everyday. Most times it comes out forced, and not so good.

Fall From Grace

I think this is the first article I have seen saying Baker should be held accountable in 2005. Dayn Perry also channels alot of the ideas I express.

As for Baker, he was derelict in his duties by not speaking to Sosa since Oct. 4 of last year. By no means is Sosa blameless in this flap, but it's Baker's job to extinguish mini-controversies of this nature, not allow them to fester.

The only thing supposedly good about Baker was that he was this great players manager. I haven't seen it since he has been hired.

Burnitz's signing also means that prospect Jason Dubois, who's put up excellent power numbers in the minors, likely won't get his merited shot to win a regular job in the majors. Never mind that he could likely out-hit Burnitz while being paid the league minimum.

Anytime you bring in a .250 career hitter, a minor leaguer has just as much chance to match that or better it.

You've probably heard it parroted in some circles that the Cubs had to, or needed to, get rid of Sosa to be able to position themselves for contention in 2005. Nonsense. What they needed was a manager who would do what he's paid to do — put out fires and maintain some semblance of esprit de corps. Baker has failed miserably on both counts. If the Cubs' efforts in 2005 come to grief, and they probably will, it's Baker who should be the first casualty.

Hit it right on the button. The honeymoon is over with Baker. Read the whole article, it is something I would like to write if I could actually write.

Wednesday, February 02, 2005

What Can You Say......

Burnitz is a Cub. Doesn't get much worse than that.

Another off-season of bright promise with high profile free agents and the Cubs manage again to come up empty handed in upgrading the offense.

You really feel like an ass when you state on multiple occasions that Cubs will not sign Magglio, Drew, or Beltran and then it becomes a reality. I would rather the Cubs prove me wrong. But I am not stupid, I am used to this. I am used to heading into free agency and coming out with nothing. It is a Cubs tradition. So I am not at all surprised by our big time upgrade of Burnitz.

At the end of last season I said a typical Cubs move would be signing Jermaine Dye. Burnitz, Dye, same thing. The sad part in all of this is Jason Dubois. With nothing left to prove in the minors, his career is over with the Cubs. He has no shot at all to get any playing time, much less even win a position. He needs to move on like Juan Cruz and have a chance at a real career in the majors.

Be happy with Jerry Hairston and Burnitz. It is a far cry from when this off-season started with visions of real talent dancing in our heads.

Update: The good thing about all of this. If the Cubs play like they did last year, Dusty gets fired. Cubs play winning baseball I am happy, Cubs play poorly I am sad, but happy Baker will be gone. Ofcourse playing poorly again has additional consequences that could force this franchise to start breaking up the team.

If Sosa was addition by subtraction, then Dusty Baker is the ultimate addition by subtraction.