Cubs Hot Stove Round-Up

Baseball's fourth season is about to warm up and I'll try and summarize all the gossip every couple of days.

- Ken Rosenthal says that Ryan Dempster won't sign with the Cubs before the Cubs exclusive negotiating window closes on November 13th. A rather wise move by him and his agent. There's no reason not to test the waters and see what is actually available for him as rival teams cannot discuss money over the next two weeks. He still may very well sign with the Cubs on a hometown discount, but that discount will be based on what the prevailing market is offering. Rosenthal speculates a four year deal for Dempster with the Cubs interested in three years. Rosenthal also speculates that if the Cubs cannot resign Dempster, they'll up their efforts on Jake Peavy, which sounds like a grand plan to me.

- Bruce Miles at The Daily Herald says Jim Hendry is ready for the GM meetings this week.

"This isn't a club that needs an overhaul," Hendry
insisted. "It's a 97-win club that just played very poorly for three
games in the postseason. When things settle in and a few weeks go by,
it's not like you need 15 new guys.

"You want to add three or four more guys or shuffle the
deck a little bit. It's the nature of the game. You make roster
changes. People come, people go. It's certainly not an overhaul club.
It's just a club that our goal is to make it better than it was at the
end of the regular season and get ready to take another shot at it."

Miles also suggest that the Cubs are more interested in bringing Kerry Wood back on a one-year deal with a couple of option years. It's likely that Kerry will get some guaranteed multi-year offers though, so we'll see how deep that Cubbie blood runs in Kerry.

- The Trib's Paul Sullivan reports the Cubs have fired Kosuke Fukudome's translator in hopes of finding someone who jells better with him, which I read as "has a better understanding of where the good strip clubs are in each city". Sullivan also guesses that if Fukudome is indeed moved to center field, either Felix Pie's days as a Cub are numbered or they'll find a leadoff hitting second basemen and move DeRosa to right field. The only leadofff hitting second basemen that go from the left side that I can think of are Brian Roberts, Chone Figgins and Akinori Iwamura, unless someone thinks Orlando Hudson is up for the job. I know Brian Roberts will be a hot topic again this offseason, but Andy McPhail did recently mention they'd like to extend him and I'm not sure Figgins or Iwamura will be available either.

 

 

Comments

Cubs futility sign updated on Sheffield-

http://deadspin.com/5074692/96--97--98--99-

I understand the concerns about Peavy's health, but it's amazing how reactionary baseball can be. A year ago, an exchange of Dempster for Peavy would have been unthinkable, but now, there are those among us that would rather lock up Dempster.

It's Jake freaking Peavy. The field is clear for the Cubs to make a move, and Towers is ready to deal NOW. Unload the farm system, get your draft picks for Demp and move forward to position players.

You don't think having 60% of the rotation filled by guys with a history of shoulder problems would be like the 2005-2006 days?

Yeah, it's a concern. But you're talking about three aces in the prime of their careers, none of whom have had major shoulder problems. Dempster, on the other hand, has had major elbow problems and is also several years older.

I'd be thrilled if Dempster returns, but if given the choice, I'd prefer Peavy. Hell, I'd prefer both of them to Marquis, but that's probably a pipe dream.

Well, Peavy's got elbow and shoulder problems. Elbow problems = TJ surgery and out for a year. Shoulder problems = Mark Prior.

I think if we trade for Peavy, that Harden should be part of the deal, maybe a three way trade to get a high end prospect. Otherwise it's just too much boom or bust for the rotation.

The other concern is Peavy isn't quite making FA money in 2009, but trading for him will approximate a big dollar signing. Dempster made what, $6.5 last year? Peavy is scheduled to make almost twice that.

Rotation of:
Zambrano $17.75
Peavy $11
Lilly $12
Marquis $9.75
Harden $7

: is a lot of cash ($59.5 million). Hendry will probably back load Dempster's contract. If Harden and/or Marquis go in trades, then there's a little more wiggle room for Peavy. Having Dempster and Peavy - don't see how that could work out after 2009, that would be like $60 million just for the top 4 guys.

At the end of the day, though, I'd prefer a rotation with the safe and steady guys over the high risk/reward guys.

At least with Peavy you know your getting a guy who will be good if healthy, with Dempster you dont know if this year was a fluke. some of Peavy's arm troubles could have very well been not wanting to risk pitching for a bad team during a dead arm period.

Peavy had a 99 ERA+ in 2006. For reference that's the same number Jason Marquis put up this year. For whatever reason, he gave up a lot of HR's that year.

fwiw, this guy has a rundown of Peavy's injury history

http://www.dugoutcentral.com/blog/?p=1944

forearm, elbow and shoulder tendonitis...

no structural damage in his last MRI, but whatever..

Cards interested in Renteria, Fuentes

Brewers pick up Cameron's $10MM option and have or will offer CC 4/110

Nats interested in Adam Dunn

"4/110"

That's an obscene amount of money for a team with an $81M payroll.

" . . . either Felix Pie's days as a Cub are numbered or they'll find a leadoff hitting second basemen and move DeRosa to right field."

Rob, that EITHER/OR was AND in Sullivan's piece.

well thank god that's fixed....you saved the Internet.

BB is on the 'list' of guys to be looked over for the Mariners' job.

http://seattlepi.nwsource.com/baseball/386111_mari...

The Orioles are wanting to dump Ramon Hernandez, I wonder if by offering to take him and part of his salary if we could get Roberts a bit cheaper.

Maybe we can take all the salary and get Markakis too? Har.

I don't think this will surprise anybody, but...

"Re-signing Dempster and Wood are Hendry's priorities, but he also is expected to seek a new leadoff man to push Soriano down in the order, a new right fielder to push Fukudome into a platoon role and middle relief help from both the left and right sides."

http://www.chicagotribune.com/sports/baseball/cubs...

that's the same link in the post...

Take this as with a grain of salt:

Heard this from Simone Adamle:

but I heard that Hendry was playing golf with Kevin Towers about a possible trade for Peavy. Names brought up were Pie, Marshall, Ronnie Cedeno.

Allegedly this came from WMVP Chicago

If it was those three and only those three, all I gotta say is !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

but I heard that Hendry was playing golf with Kevin Towers...

right, and after the round of golf they are going to #22's house for cookies and milk.

i stated my source

I've heard the speculation was Towers wants 4 players back from all teams he's talking with, including those 3 rumored - Marshall, Pie, Cedeno and apparently he wants Jose Ceda back as well. If the Padres do indeed want Cedeno then I'd be willing to bet Towers would make Hendry take K.Greene and his full contract in the deal as well.

also the Yankees signed Sergio Mitre
http://mlb.mlb.com/news/article.jsp?ymd=20081103&c...

first link in the comments is a story about what Towers is looking for....

 

I'll confirm Chad's source -- I heard Bruce Levine report that the Pads are interested in a Marshall/Pie/Cedeno/Ceda package.

that would be beyond awesome...but I don't buy it

Apparently that may have been what the Cubs offered. Not gonna do it, Jim.

I am sure AZ Phil was all over this, but for anyone else who missed it, sounds like the Cubs got a 2ndish and 6this rounder out of Korea recently.

http://eastwindupchronicle.com/couple-of-new-korea...

Rotoworld saying the Cubs traded nonprospect, RHP Matt Avery to the Nats for Brian Buchter, LHP non-prospect. At least our non-prospect is 21 (Avery is 25).

Wheeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee. Ain't the GM meetings fun!

Hendry feels Hoffpauir may help-
http://www.dailyherald.com/story/?id=247539

Dempster could be attractive to the NY teams-

http://msn.foxsports.com/mlb/story/8748676/Dempste...

Recent comments

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  • How about Kyle Farnsworth? I know he was consistently upper 90s.

    videographer 1 min 53 sec ago view
  • If he puts up Soriano numbers I will be ecstatic

    jacos 1 hour 49 min ago view
  • I think Javy is learning--but he's learning to make contact, not learning to lay off pitches out of the zone. A quick glance at his plate discipline numbers on Fangraphs shows that his contact rate is up, especially his contact rate out of the zone, but his swing rate is up too, especially his swing rate out of the zone.

    Charlie 2 hours 24 min ago view
  • I definitely saw ballpark radar guns go up to 102 on Kerry Wood back when he was still a starter, but who knows how accurate they were.

    Charlie 2 hours 37 min ago view
  • They've mentioned Henry Rodriguez (2013), Chris Carpenter, and Andrew Cashner as Cubs who have gone 100+. They said Rodriguez was tops at 100.8. Who knows before 2008?

    QuietMan 4 hours 1 min ago view
  • Regarding Heyward--

    He'll play regardless of what he does, just like Soriano played for seven years before they finally ditched him.

    What can they do? All I can think of is they can keep hiring and firing hitting coaches until they find one who can get him to stop hitting balls with the handle of the bat.

    (All those broken bats added to his paycheck is just a bit much.)

    VirginiaPhil 4 hours 2 min ago view
  • Lester will probably be all right.

    I think Arrieta might have added too much muscle preparing for that butt-naked ESPN photo shoot. Pitchers are supposed to be loose, not muscled up.

    Seriously.

    VirginiaPhil 4 hours 8 min ago view
  • I have basically written off Heyward for this year -- if you are working on major swing changes in late July, you are going to struggle. Hopefully, he can be more productive at the plate next year. It will be interesting to see what they do with him if the Cardinals keep winning and close the gap. Heyward is dead last in the NL in slugging and in the bottom 5 in OPS -- yet still has a positive WAR. Hunh.

    billybucks 4 hours 12 min ago view
  • Has anybody in a Cub uniform ever thrown a ball 103 before?

    VirginiaPhil 4 hours 15 min ago view
  • He certainly looks better, no doubt, and is a different player than what we saw when he first came up. Full credit to him for changing his approach and saving his career.

    But he has zero walks in 35AB since the break, and 10 in 251 AB all year. He does seem to be able to hit some pitches out of the zone, but, a guy with his pop should be drawing more walks. However, it's easy to forget he is still only 23, and probably trying to make an impact to prove he should be an everyday player.

    billybucks 4 hours 24 min ago view
  • The usual suspects, Molina and Wong. Gyorko drew a walk with two outs, none on. I recall us (particularly Szczur and Bryant) swinging at everything Familia threw.

    VirginiaPhil 4 hours 26 min ago view
  • Yup. Thanks Q

    The E-Man 4 hours 32 min ago view
  • QuietMan 4 hours 40 min ago view
  • I for one hope that Sosa comes back soon.

    Rob Richardson 4 hours 59 min ago view
  • O/B interesting you should mention that. Google ESPN Science Aroldis Chapman and you'll be treated to how his mechanics and delivery are possibly historic. It's the 120% of his body stretch plus the torque. They compare him to the Unit and NRyan.

    The E-Man 5 hours 37 min ago view
  • Amazing how much lower the production gets when Bryant runs into a mini-cold streak. He doesn't stay cold for long. If just one of Zobrist or, gulp, Heyward, gets hot, they oughta have one more really nice winning streak in them. Having a closer that you have absolute confidence in can't hurt.

    Old and Blue 6 hours 21 min ago view