Sunday, June 27, 2010

What the Cubs Need to do to Make the Playoffs...

Man this is a tough one, as a lot has to happen for the Cubs to make the playoffs and even a push. But here I go...

1) The Cubs need too HIT: This has to be number one on the list as this is the Cubs only major problem. As there pitching has held up this year pretty nicely. Guys like Derrek Lee, Aramis Ramirez and Ryan Theriot have to get back to there 2007 and 2008 form where the offence came together. Lee needs to stop swinging at those high pitches as he can't catch up to them. Ramirez is a little late on his swings and that has to get back to normal but we did see a little of that today against the White Sox. Finally, Theriot, needs to take pitches and more walks. And stop swinging at the first pitch. If these 3 guys get back on track, we might see a late run by the Cubbies.

2) Be more CONSISTENT: This is a major number two as the Cubs have shown some signs of coming out of there funk and then some signs they won't come out. That would go under as a really inconsistent ball club. Like Soto who started off the season great went into a slump and lost playing time to Hill. But as of late, Soto has shown signs of starting to hit the ball and throwing the ball way better when a player tries to steal. With that, Soto got out of Pinella's doghouse and Hill lost playing time again. Another player is Soriano, I know he is a player that goes on hot streaks and no one can stop him but he went cold and fell apart. But he came back to life as he is starting to hit again. Finally the manager Lou Pinella, he needs to pick a leadoff man and stick with him, he needs to try and keep the lineup the same on a regular basis and defintly after a win

3) Colvin and Castro NEED to play everyday: So far, these 2 players have been the bright spots for the Cubs in the 2010 season. When Colvin has played he has produce in any spot in the order. He has speed which the Cubs need and an average defender right now but I see that improving over years. Then Castro, this kid is only 20 years old and so far has only had 2 off days in his major league career and that was last week on back to back days. Castro brings speed, good defense as he can make plays a lot of other guys can't and surprisingly has been patient as he has been taking pitches. That is why I think they should be in the lineup on an everyday basis.

4) Other moves that is spread out and can't be named in a title: Only use relief pitchers John Grabow and Bob Howry when the game is out of reach and if the Cubs are winning by a good amount. Just DL Carlos Zambarno so if the Cubs fail to trade him, the bullpen will not screw up his arm and he can make a return to the rotation with no precautions. If your pitcher is pitching good, relief or starter. leave him in unless he is over 115 pitches or injured.

With that being said, the lineup I would put out there would be...
1) Tyler Colvin RF
2) Starlin Castro SS
3) Derrek Lee 1B
4) Marlon Byrd CF
5) Aramis Ramirez 3B
6) Alfonso Soraino LF
7) Geovany Soto C
8) Ryan Theriot 2B
9) Pitcher P

Starting Rotation...
1) Carlos Silva
2) Ryan Dempster
3) Ted Lilly
4) Randy Wells
5) Tom Gorzelanny

The Bullpen...
CL-Carlos Marmol
Lefty set-up-Sean Marshall
Righty set-up-Andrew Cashner
Long relief-Thomas Diamond (would be called up when Zambrano goes on DL)
Lefty specialist-John Grabow
RP-Bob Howry
RP-Brian Schlitter

The Bench...
1) Kosuke Fukudome-4th OF
2) Jeff Baker-2b/3B
3) Mike Fontenot-2B/SS
4) Xavier Nady-1B/OF
5) Koyie Hill-C

I think if all these were to happen, the Cubs would make a push for the playoffs and might even make the playoffs. But all this to happen is a lot to ask. But we shall just wait and see...

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Trade Scenarios...

I will have 6 trade scenarios for veterans to go to another team as these are rebuilding trades. I will post the trades with the player being link to his stats in the minors. Also I will have a brief description of why I would do that trade.

Trade 1-Cubs/Angels:

Cubs get:
SS Hainley Statia
P Amalio Diaz

Angels get:
1B Derrek Lee
2 million

Description: I think this trade can work out because the Angels need a 1B and the combo for them right now is not doing to job. Also I think Lee will waive his NTC to the Angels because that is where his family lives. The SS is Dominican and maybe Castro can help him out a little and then pitcher will help add depth.

Trade 2-Cubs/Red Sox:

Cubs get:
3B Ryan Chang

Red Sox get:
1B/OF Xavier Nady

Description: Nady is a FA after the season and will not be re-signed so at least get something for him as a mid tier prospect. Nady can play OF for them as all there OF's are injured, can play 1B to give players a rest and can DH as Ortiz slumps.

Trade 3-Cubs/Det:

Cubs get:
P Andrew Oliver

Detroit gets:
SS Ryan Theriot

Description: Theriot is already 30 and has been really inconsistent this year. He is the singles master but is striking out way more and being way too aggressive. So I think the Cubs should also trade him got a mid tier prospect. And Detroit is in the market for a middle infielder.

Trade 4-Cubs/Minn:

Cubs get:
P Deolis Guerra
DH Rene Tosoni

Minn gets:
P Tom Gorzelanny

Description: I think Gorzo is going to be traded as they just put him back in the rotation to showcase him. With Big Z going back to the bullpen. I know Minn will be in the market for SP and not just one. I think there is a good chance they will get a better one like Oswalt or Lee but I think they could use Gorzo to as he is cheap, a lefty and won't cost a lot of players. If the Cubs do trade Gorzo, Cashner can go to the rotation if they keep Zambrano in the bullpen.

Trade 5-Cubs/Bos:

Cubs get:
OF Ryan Kalish
P Felix Doubront

Bos gets:
OF Kosuke Fukudome
13.5 million

Description: The Cubs need to trade OF and get half of Kosuke's contract off the books. Kosuke should be benched and give the starters playing time, Colvin (should be), Soriano and Byrd. I know the Cubs are paying half of his salary but they will have to in any trade. Kosuke would bring the Red Sox a good defender and an occasion good hitter. Kalish looks like he will have a good career but is struggling and the Cubs might be able to get him in the deal.

Trade 6-Cubs/Mets:

Cubs get:
P Josh Stinson
P Jenrry Mejia
P Mark Cohoon

Mets get:
P Ted Lilly

Description: The Cubs need to trade Lilly as his trade value is pretty good and is a FA after the season. And I don't think the Cubs will re-sign him with the good young arms the Cubs have in the minors. Also Cashner who is in the pen, can go to the rotation. Jenrry will be a good starting pitcher and the other two don't look bad either. I think the Mets will strike out on Oswalt and Lee and then they will switch there attention to Lilly.

In all these trades, the Cubs are cutting budget and getting nice players for the future as the Cubs are starting to rebuild (I hope). Finally, I like these trades too.

Friday, June 18, 2010

Cubs Should Re-Sign DLEE...

I think the Cubs should re-sign Derrek Lee to a 2 year contract with a team option for the third year and NO NTC. I know I am going to get bash for this but there is reasoning to back this up.

Derrek Lee is the quiet captain on the team but also a role model to young kids all over the world. The Cubs can probably sign him cheaper as he wants to finish his career with the Cubs and then retire. I know Lee has been having trouble in the field as of late but he saves so many errors for his infielders. I think the errors he is making, it just a phase and will get out of it soon.

He does have pop in the middle of the order and still takes a good amount of walks. But he is getting up there in age. So would that decrease? More defiantly but I think he would still be a good aspect to the team and winning ball games.

Lee is a fan favorite by most and the Cubs front office. And the most of them all, the Cubs new owner-chairman Tom Ricketts. He has already stated, he would love Lee back.

There is speculation that the Cubs will not re-sign Derrek Lee and go after Carlos Pena who would also be a free agent. Would he be an upgrade over Lee? I don't know and not sure he would be. OK Pena has way more power than Lee. But Pena hits for a low average, not a great defender and does not take a great amount of walks. I know Lee is not hitting for a great average but his past record has shown unlike Pena. He's actually hitting worse that Lee this year. Go figure. Also the Cubs can probably sign Lee cheaper than Pena. Also, then if the Cubs wanted to trade him, he won't have a NTC so it would be easier. (But has as we know Hendry, he would get one. Here is a big BUT, will Hendry be in charge of those negotiations? As the look of it, he won't.)

Who would you rather have Pena or Lee?

Also the Cubs really don't have an in-house solution if Lee left. But there has been talk that 2007 first round pick Josh Vitters will move from 3B to 1B. And if that is the case, this move would give him more time in the minors to develop.

Derrek Lee stats
Carlos Pena stats

Now to my opinion, I love Lee and would miss if he is gone but that happens. I think this would make so much sense but what do I know.

So would you be in favor of this or not?

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Cubs Should go after Ian Snell...

This is not a rumor or anything but I think the Cubs should do this. Ian Snell was just DFA by the Seattle Mariners today.

Ian Snell stats.

I think if the Cubs did in fact trade for him, it would be a low risk high reward situation. He would come cheaper as the M's don't want him. The Cubs do have trade pieces, that they may be able to offer, to acquire him.

I know the Cubs might not want to add older pieces because they want to get younger as you have seen through out the year but Ian Snell is only and almost 29. Where he can still help for years to come as a relief pitcher or starter. The 29 year old righty, has posted a 6.41 era in 46.1 innings pitch during the 2010 season so far. I know that era looks brutal but maybe he can change it over here with pitching coach Larry Rotchchild. Maybe it can be a repeat of an ex M Carlos Silva. Who was brutal in Seattle and is up for the comeback player of the year award with the Cubs.

When 3B Aramis Ramirez comes off the DL, the Cubs will have to trade Jeff Baker, Chad Tracy or Mike Fontenot who are all out of options. And can not be sent to the minors without clearing waivers which I don't think would happen. I say the Cubs trade either Jeff Baker or Chad Tracy for Ian Snell. And I think this helps out both teams and it finally helps solve the Cubs infield problem, of too many.

But with the M's in the AL and the Cubs in the NL, do you think he not get claimed by anyone in in the AL? I say no but with his stats this year, there could be a slight possibility.

I would be in favor of this move because he can pitch out of the bullpen, in the rotation, still young at 29 and maybe Larry will help Snell pitch better like he did with Silva. Maybe the Cubs could win this trade like they did in the winter.

Friday, June 11, 2010

Cashner Should Start...

This is with out doubt and an obvious statement.

Since the Cubs brought up 23 year old Andrew Cashner, he has only pitched perfect. It goes with out mention, he is the Cubs top pitching prospect for a reason. He has reached 99 on his fast with good breaking balls to go with that. But as we all know Pinella, he does not trust his young players and finds does not find time to play them or get them ion the ballgame. So why would Pinella have faith in him and put him in the rotration? I say he wouldn't right now but he needs to. If they want to win more games.

He should switch with Randy Wells who is struggling really bad, while the pitches to batters are getting hit as much as all the Lebron James rumors. Once again, he struggle today and made it harder for the Cubs to win.

So in my mind this is the move you have to do. But right now he is the righy set-up man but you can let Marshall keep that job as he has been pitching amazing.

So wouldn't that be the right move?

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Cubs First 3 Picks...

Sorry for the dealys but I have class, work and have not have much time to for the blog. But here is the 3 first picks bu the Cubs and they have been a surprise.

1st round pick, 16th overall: Hayden Simpson. He is a RHP and was from Southern Arkansas University. 21 years old and was a reach in the 1st roud pick.

Video on Simpson

A lot of people were surprised by the Cubs picking him here because on most draft boards he went in the 3rd-4th at the earliest. But Wilken was hearing he woul not be there at 65thand he took him. Every Cubs fan will hepe he is no not a bust and will pan out.

2nd round pick, 65th overall: Reggie Golden. He is a CF who has the speed and some pop but doe not hit consistently and this could of been a reach in the draft also. He is 18 right now about to turn 19 in a couple months.

Video on Golden

Right now he is to young to tell if he will have a good career but it might of been better to draft a player who is older and can tell what kind of career he will had. But I say give him time to mature.

3rd round pick, 97th overall Micah Gibbs. He is a C and is 22 years old. This could be the best draft pick by the Cubs in the draft so far. Keith Law calls it a steal and I hope he is right.

Video on Gibbs

He is already 22 so I think he could be closer to the majors than other guys drafted. I think he will be pretty good. But that is manly hope.

So with the 3 picks, I give the Cubs a C because of Gibbs pick or it would be a D or F. The Cubs just need to sign them and get them on the field so they can keep moving up.

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Is DLEE Being Shopped or Anybody...

Here's the latest from the Derrek Lee drama lately. All that I write below are from writers sand according to sources.

David Kaplan says that the Cubs and Angles are in serious trade talks about Derrek Lee. And that is according to sources he trusts the most.

Gordon Wittnmymer said the Cubs and Angles are not talking about a trade for Derrek Lee but Xavier Nady.

Carrie Muskat mentions today, that people she has talked to, says the Cubs are not talking trade with the Angels right now. And it is just rumors.

Now for my opinion:

I can't say if the Cubs are or not talking to the Angels about a trade for either Nady or Lee but I can say there has been conversations. The Angels need a 1B and the Cubs have 2 that would come pretty cheap besides Lee is owed 13 million this year. The Angels current 1B Morales who broke his leg is probably out for the season and when he comes back in 2011 he can came right in even what Lee did for them because Lee is a free agent after the year. So both options could be good for the Angels in short term, right? I would think so. But with Lee's contract being the only issue.

As a fan, I love Lee and would miss him if he is traded but this is a move that will help the ball club now and in the future. The Cubs can either call-up the youngsters, play Nady at 1st if not trades, call-up Tracy to play 1st or platoon Nady and Tracy at 1st. We will just have to wait and see if Lee is even traded to the Angels are any team.

Knowing GM Jim Hendry this will not happen because he does not like to trade veterans but maybe his mind will change. Let's just hope.