Rule 5 Draft Update
The Toronto Blue Jays have designated RHP Randy Wells for assignment.
Wells was selected by the Jays from the Cubs AAA Iowa roster in the Major League phase of the MLB Rule 5 Draft last December, and although he pitched well enough in Spring Training to earn a slot on Toronto's Opening Day 25-man roster, he finally got caught in a numbers game
The Jays now have ten days to either trade or outright Wells, although they actually have to do something with him within eight days because it takes two days for a player to clear waivers.
If the Blue Jays trade Wells to another club, the new club assumes the Rule 5 obligations (player must remain on the club's 25-man roster for the entire 2008 season).
If the Jays can't find a trading partner, they will place him on Outright Assignment Waivers, and if he goes unclaimed, the Cubs will have the opportunity to reacquire Wells for $25,000 (half the Rule 5 Draft price). If the Cubs choose not to reclaim Wells, the Blue Jays get to keep him, and he is automatically outrighted to the minors.
But the Cubs historically always take back Rule 5 players if they get the chance (Dubois, Szuminski, Hagerty, Mateo, Holdzkom, and Campusano), so if they are given the opportunity to reacquire Wells, they almost certainly will.
Also, RHP Tim Lahey was Designated for Assignment by the Phillies last Saturday, and the Phils will need to trade Lahey by this weekend or else place him on Outright Assignment Waivers.
Lahey was the #1 pick in the 2007 Rule 5 Draft, as the Tampa Bay Rays selected the big right-hander from the Minnesota Twins AAA Rochester club. Then immediately after the draft, the Rays sold the rights to Lahey to the Cubs for $100,000 (twice the Rule 5 Draft price).
The rubber-armed Lahey showed some flashes of upside in Spring Training, but he is still a bit raw (a converted catcher, he's only been pitching for two years), and the Cubs didn't have a spot for him on the 25-man roster. So he was placed on Outright Assignment Waivers two weeks ago, just before the start of the regular season.
Lahey was claimed off waivers by Philadelphia (with the Phillies assuming the Rule 5 obligations), but got into no games with the Phillies before being Designated for Assignment last Saturday to make room on the 25-man roster for Brad Lidge, who was reactivated from the DL at that time.
Just as with Wells and the Jays, the Phillies have 10 days to either trade or outright Lahey, but if they don't trade him, they have to place him on Outright Asignment Waivers within eight days, because it takes two days for a player to clear waivers. If Lahey does clear waivers this time, then he must be offered back to the Twins.
And if Lahey was in fact the tentative PTBNL in the Craig Monroe deal, then the Twins will certainly opt to reclaim Lahey, and if that happens, then he can be traded to the Cubs.
One thing to remember about MLB Rule 6 (the rule that governs the disposition of Rule 5 players who are not retained on a 25-man roster) is that if the player clears waivers and his original club takes him back, he is automatically outrighted back to the AAA club from which he was drafted. He is NOT placed on the club's 40-man roster.
So if the Cubs do reclaim Wells from TOR and/or reacquire Lahey from MIN, both would initially be assigned outright to AAA Iowa, and would not have to be added to the Cubs 40-man roster. However, both Wells and Lahey (if they were to be reacquired by the Cubs) would be candidates for recall later this season, and both would likely be added to the Cubs 40-man roster by the end of the season.
It would be nice to have arms like Wells and Lahey at Iowa to provide the Cubs some additional middle-relief depth for later in the season.
Chapman shouldn't be reserved anymore on 40 man.
Interesting split on Heyward according to ESPN. As a CF, his slash line .292/.363/.375/.738. At RF: .212/.204/.300/.604. 21/72 as a CF, 58/273 as a RF.
He's also been better when batting 2nd, but he had a nice start in the 6 hole, but has slumped ever since. He was heating up before the All Star break, but is only hitting .108 in the 2nd half.
When we played the Reds with Chapman, I always thought of it as an eight-inning game. So now other teams have eight innings to try to get a lead against the Cubs. Should be a challenge, assuming three or four Cubs ever start hitting again.
I don't really try to get to know and like these players personally. I'm rooting for laundry, for the most part. Exceptions might be when a player makes trouble in the clubhouse or in the dugout. (Zambrano and Bradley come to mind. Also Papelbon.) But I don't think Chapman is one of those jerks.
Unfortunately, a pretty good summary. It looks like next year Heyward will be getting yet another batting stance adjustment.
The recent good news has been Baez. I'm afraid about the next league adjustment on him, though, which is probably right around the corner.
Bryant I don't worry about too much. Just not seeing the ball well right now. He'll turn it around. Russell's been good with men in scoring position all year and he's 22ish. He'll be fine but next year is likely to be his breakout year.
If Travis' back-to-back-to-back walks cost Hendricks the ERA title, that would really suck.
Edit: "A lifeless loss to a lousy Sox team."
This place is a real downer after a loss to the Sox.
I expect they will go 5-9 games above .500 the rest of the year. 96-98 wins will win the Division.
They should have one more 2-3 week hot streak in them.
However, several players are just "average" for the last month: Zobrist, Ross, Russell, Ceasar. Montero is terrible, plus he cannot throw anyone out. -WAR. Heyward is abysmal at the plate, but a plus in the OF. Still with RISP he has been terrible. KB has not been driving in runs as of late. But Apparently the team is still above average with RISP according to S Sahadev.
I came to that realization tonight. I kept expecting them to play better, but now I realize they aren't going to. They are a .500 team now.
- They have one reliable starting pitcher. Jake's magic is gone, and it doesn't look like it's coming back. Lester has been lousy recently. Lackey's ERA goes up every time he pitches.
- Heyward has been dead weight all year. I can't remember a single series where he was a significant offensive contributor. Not one. Great defense, but but if he were hitting .270 with 10 HR and played average defense, the Cubs would be better off.
new rule...no one's allowed to throw k.bryant a changeup
Team is .500 since early May and is playing like a .500 team. Lack of offense seems to be putting a lot of pressure on the pitchers...and they aren't handling it terribly well.
.500 the rest of the way still may win the division though.
...i hate espn.
nothing like settling into a cubs game to get a few minutes cutaway for an ortiz AB in the 6th inning of the det/bos game.
oh, at least they're doing split screen now...i guess.
I'm liking this rookie Nathan.
Richard DFA'd. Meh...
Throwbacks with fashionable cutouts would be a nice touch.
The next 2 games are nationally televised. I think we dominate tonight, hitting 3 HRs off Shields. Great night for KB to end HR drought facing HR prone pitcher in one of the most hitter friendly parks in the league.