first second SWAG* at the Opening Day roster.
Updated when Phil Rogers filled in my memory blank. His constant hyping of Marquez Smith may have been the indirect cause of part of my brain block.
Catchers (2): Geovany Soto, Koyie Hill
Geo is on of the best hitting catchers around and Koyie was tendered a contract. Welington Castillo, Robinson Chirinos and Steve Clevenger are in the queue.
6 7): Carlos Pena, Jeff Baker, Blake DeWitt, Starlin Castro, Aramis Ramirez, Darwin Barney, Marquez Smith
Baker, DeWitt and Barney can move around, Smith the corners. Baker can play OF, too, if needed
5 4): Alfonso Soriano, Marlon Byrd, Tyler Colvin, Kosuke Fukudome
You can swap Bryan LaHair (I did) out for Brad Snyder or Sam Fuld. Or for a right-handed hitter that I can't think of now (Update: Marquez Smith, making Baker the extra OF). Also depends on Colvin's status as a reserve first baseman.
Note: The Cubs have a wealth of young pitchers, they can do all sorts of stuff with this roster as a result --- move guys from rotation to bullpen, trade guys, stash 'em in Iowa. I need to follow-up on this list with their status in terms of options, contract dollars remaining and all that good stuff.
Starting Rotation (5): Carlos Zambrano, Ryan Dempster, Andrew Cashner, Tom Gorzelanny, Casey Coleman
Gorzo could be traded, Cashner will be limited in his workload (I hope) so look out for guys like Jay Jackson or a veteran from the pen to pick-up innings
Bullpen (7): Carlos Marmol, Kerry Wood, John Grabow, Esmailin Caridad, Sean Marshall, Randy Wells, Christopher Carpenter
Lest we forget Austin Bibens-Dirkx, Angel Guzman, Carlos Silva, Marcos Mateo, Kyle Smit, Jackson, Jeff Stevens,
Brian Schlitter, James Russell, Rafael Dolis, Scott Maine, Christopher Archer and even Jeff Samardzija or Thomas Diamond... or even Scott Rice or John Gaub, the lists goes on and on
*scientific wild ass guess
Friday, December 17, 2010
Thursday, December 9, 2010
Don't mind occasionally low-quality streams? Understand Spanish? Willing to try?
Then you can watch live baseball almost every night. I can't vouch for the content, quality, or whatever extraneous stuff people tune in to (I've had novellas shown between innings, sometimes they change the channel to another game though). Anyway, these are all on ustream.tv or justin.tv and don't require registration, downloads or anything.
Of course, you can get one or two games a week in generally better quality on ESPN3.
List and embedded players current as of 1/6/2011
You can view almost every stream right here or click any of the links to access a stream through its own page.
Watch live video from elgranice on Justin.tv
Watch live video from GRANICE.TV on Justin.tv
Watch live video from rosmerbeisbol on Justin.tv
Feed 1 high quality feed
Watch live video from Deportes FULL HDTV on Justin.tv
Watch live video from elpizzerotv on Justin.tv
Watch live video from TOMATEROS on Justin.tv
Watch live video from Yaquis de Cd. Obregon [YAQUIS TV] on Justin.tv
Monday, December 6, 2010
Batch 2: December 4,Update 2.1: December 6
Update 2.2: December 8
(12/8) Pena, one year 10 million bucks. Done.
(12/6) I don't want to talk about James Loney or Lyle Overbay. So I'll just quote some tweets. Oddly, I just did something similar at Another Cubs Blog, also to express concern/horror over a first base candidate. Twice in one day, hmm.
Me: @truebluela would you agree, Loney puts the ball in play a lot and without much authority ... not exactly a corner infield profile?
Eric: @harrypav Yep
Here's the bit at ACB about Bryan LaHair. Now I'm linking to myself quoting myself on twitter. I think the outsourcing firm that handles my narcissism is dropping the ball.
Allow me to quote myself and Zach Sanders on twitter.
Quote:Me: He's only been in three games this winter. He hit really well in Iowa, but he just turned 28 and has been in AAA since 2006.
Zach: Yeah, he's the definition of replacement level.
Me: The Cubs could end up needing him this year, the way things are going.
Flash forward to now.
Overbay, well, not much to say ... he's going to be 34 but might not be a bad option for a year. That's paraphrasing some more twitter thoughts.
I wonder if there's a team with a first baseman they'd like to swap for Kosuke Fukudome, but I can't think of any "bad contract" deals that match-up. I haven't thought too hard, as I suspect the Cubs still have Fukudome as a plan B everyday right fielder.
The proverbial inning eater search is also dwindling, both by signing and apparent disinterest. The Cubs seem focused on Brandon Webb at the moment.
Webb could post a 65% GB rate with two swing and miss pitches (curve and especially change) plus had a new cutter ... before getting hurt. Badly hurt, shoulder being tough to come back from. Even with middling velocity Webb could be very effective.
That's all that is really cooking right now. See below for some older updates and more stuff that's still a-simmerin'
Batch 1 & Update 1, November 29, Update 2 & 3, November 30, Update 4 December 2, Update 5 - 7 December 3, Update 8 - 9 December 4
The Cubs clearly need someone to play first. Tyler Colvin is not a realistic option, and Bryan LaHair is fine for the I-Cubs. It's no secret the Cubs are seeking a left-handed, quality defender to fill the void.
(Update 7) Cubs "pursuing"
(Update 8) Adrian to Boston. A-Gon is going to take a physical, sign an extension and all that good stuff.
(Update 9) Puma to the Cardinals. Am I dreaming or are the Cards currently slated to have Theriot at short and Berkman in their outfield? I'd like to congratulate the Reds on their repeat NLC title in 2011....
Chris Davis was mentioned earlier in the off-season, as was Nick Johnson.
(Update 4) Berkman is looking for $7-11 million
(Update 2) Brad Hawpe. CCO noted his availability, and the Cubs' interest.
This is a dicey point for me. On one hand, you never have enough starting pitching and there are enough questions marks in what appears to be a deep group to justify adding an arm. On the other hand, this is often a costly investment. The phrase "innings eater" on its own gives me a middling dose of agitation.
The Cubs are rumored to be in on Jeremy Bonderman,
(Update 6) Twitter lit up for a bit when Jerry Crasnick tweeted the Nats and Cubs were stepping it up on Brandon Webb.
(update 4) Padilla is staying with the Dodgers.
Bonderman and Webb are interesting, all five are at least a little scary.
(Update 1) CCO tweets the Cubs are in on a couple other reclamation projections, namely Jeff Francis and
(Update 5) Bedard inked a minor-league deal with Seattle. The M's paid him a lot of cash while he was injured. Or their insurance company did. Francis is talking to the Mets, but has not signed (per ESPN.com).
This is a great opportunity to give someone too much money. Jesse Crain is the hot set-up guy, and the Cubs are interested. Joaquin Benoit got $16.5 over three years, which should be out of reach for Crain. But, still, that's a lot of scratch.
(Update 5) Making my own rumor out of thin air ... Bobby Jenks. Please. His walk rate may have slid upward, but his K and GB rates are really good and even the BB rate is easily above average.
(Update 3) Second is not a gaping hole, but the it wouldn't be a surprise if the Cubs aren't sold on Blake DeWitt playing everyday. Anyway, Orlando Hudson is available and the Cubs are said to be interested. O-Dog is (was?) a great defender, which could be a refreshing change.
Friday, December 3, 2010
Pure baseball. Ron Santo loved baseball. He loved the Cubs, his teammates, the players, the coaches, the fans, the people who work in the game, and, most of all, Ron loved the game.
Perseverance. To play like he did with Type 1 Diabetes, without a glucose monitor, without a handy syringe of insulin ... defies my imagination. But what he did after his career, battling cancer, living with two prosthetic legs, heart disease and more that I can't even think of right now. Never complained, always tried to work or at least get on the phone for the pre-game. He just did what he did, because he loved to do it.
Inspiration. My wife has Lupus, and, frankly, she's lucky to be alive. 20 some odd years with the disease, and the past two years have been marred by multiple strokes, kidney failure and, well, I won't go on. She's lost a lot - the strokes alone have damaged her vision and speech. But she gets up and keeps fighting every day. We talk about Ronnie's battles regularly. We still will, but it will be tinged with sadness. The message won't change, though. That lives on.
Ron's greatest lesson to us all: Life isn't fair, but go out there and enjoy the heck out of it. Every day.
Thursday, December 2, 2010
Starlin Castro is two people, neither can drink in the US or needs to shave.
Starlin the Amazing and Starlin the Spacey
I think this is going to be something we'll have to get used to.
Starlin the Amazing
Serious leather, to the right ...
.. and to the left
Stealing a base
Starlin the Spacey
Picked-off for the TOOTLBAN
Dropping a pop-up
He is fun to watch, that's for sure. More Starlin screen caps at my Twitpic page.