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Great piece Blaine. I can see the Cubs shopping LaHair if the phones are ringing for him and the right price comes along - but I don't think there's an all out firesale of the Cubs best batters.
Extending or trading Garza will have a lot to do with the success of RHP Jeff Samardzija who currently occupies the 3rd starting role. He's been surprisingly good, and if Samardzija can stay consistent, then the Cubs may look to build on that 1-2 punch in the bullpen. But again... no one is safe if the phone rings and the right price comes along.
1 year ago on Cubs Rumors: Ryan Dempster, Matt Garza and Bryan LaHair
great piece Joe!
1 year, 1 month ago on Wrap-Up: Chicago Cubs vs Washington Nationals (4/08/12)
@Nick Blazek @Kevin Zimmermann Well said Nick. I have full faith in Stewart this year and I think Dale Sveum is smart enough to know when to sit him down and when to let him see action. Lets hope he stays tough and (like you said) puts up some solid numbers.
1 year, 1 month ago on Ian Stewart Has Big Shoes to Fill in 2012
@Kevin Zimmermann Good point Kevin. I do agree... team games demand that the collective pick up any slack that might be hindering the team. But the comparison from Stewart to Ramirez will be made whether the pressure exists or not (same thing with LaHair to Pena). Its part of the game... especially when taking it from a sabermetric perspective.
@Blaze9497 Nope! Genuine error on my end Blaze. Good eye.
Good point Blaze. Soriano may be the only guy who is guaranteed a spot, but as you pointed out, only because of his mammoth contract. Hard to blame the guy for signing a contract that he knew he was being overpaid for. He's starting to age quite a bit too... but lets hope he pulls out a great season at the dish!
1 year, 2 months ago on Quick Hits - News and Notes
@jsdahlstrom You're right on the money JS. The breakouts will come from the bullpen this year... if any. We'll just have to wait and see what this year's crew can do. In the mean time, go cubs!!
1 year, 2 months ago on Breakout Seasons: Who's Due in 2012
who would you say is due in 2012, js?
I still think the 2012 Cubs will be a better team. These are all players who will have to prove themselves in order to have an impact. Guys like Pena and Ramirez were not motivated at the end of the year. A new team mentality will have a greater impact than one single player's efforts.
And allow me to clarify, when I talk about Lahair, I mean "young in his major league role". I suppose I could have been clearer on this and I thank you for pointing out that flaw.
couldn't have said it better mkkreg, but for the sake of the article? I had to expand it a little bit!
1 year, 2 months ago on Cubs on Jorge Soler: Why Speculation is Hurting the North Siders
Thanks for the comment Dakota.
Its an interesting debate, and I do see your point. Trey McNutt would never turn the organization around, but then again, no single player can. The only reason Epstein can have an impact is because he's head of baseball operations. Quite frankly, as nice as it is to have Epstein, anyone could have done a better job than the previous front office team.
Epstein is good, but he's not a god. I could argue that Jed Hoyer or Andrew Friedman (TB Rays) could have performed the same task and make the same moves that Epstein is making.
Anyone in the front office will only ever write checks an "keep an eye on the market". Take Boston for example: They won two world series under Epstein... Did Epstein ever swing a bat? No. It is the players who make winning possible. Epstein made some good moves, but he also made a LOT of bad moves (Crawford for example)
Consider this: under the new CBA, the old Epstein strategy no longer works. Large market teams may have buying power, but they aren't allowed to throw money at young players and amass them in the farm system (much like he did in Boston). The MLB is balancing the power so that teams like Boston, Chicago and NYY can no longer simply walk over small market teams with a massive payroll. Epstein will once again have to prove himself and find a new way to rebuild the team.
And as far as "powerhouses" go, we need to look at the definition of that. A powerhouse team is a team that consistently wins or has an impact in the post season. Take the current Detroit Red Wings for example: they've CONSISTENTLY been in the mix for almost 7 straight years. Boston is no powerhouse, and they proved it last year.
1 year, 3 months ago on Epstein Compensation: McNutt to Boston?