Sorry for the dealy. Jesse had some technical problems so we have to bump the chat back to 3 p.m. CT. Stay tuned ...
Welcome to our weekly Cubs chat..this time from sunny az for the Az Fall League..Its about 85 and sunny here as I watch some Cubs prospects play...Bryant knocked in his league leading 13th run already today...PLenty to talk about so fire away with questions...
Who do u see of the pitching prospects making their mlb debuts this year for the Cubs?
Def think Kyle Hendricks has a good chance to pitch at Wrigley at some point..he's the main name that sticks out, at least of the starters
There seems to be some bad blood between Don Mattingly and the Dodgers front office. If he leaves what are the chances the Cubs look at him? How does he fit into what the cubs are looking for?
Been asked that alot on twitter (@espnchicubs) and hadnt much thought about it..is there a Theo/Jed connection? And more important Im guessing he would be in line for a more plumb job..a team ready to win like the tigers or Nats...I mean it remains to be seen if he's an elite guy, after all why dont the Dodgers like him, but I'd guess he would go for one of those jobs..I simply dont know how the cubs front office feels about him because its never come up
Why hasn't Jim Riggleman had his name thrown into the managerial ring? He's got the experience, managed the cubs in the past, and is a sound baseball mind?
Yeah, I like him, but prob some "been there, done that" and again not off the Theo "tree", not Latin, also not young, so maybe some checks against him...or maybe not against him but not for him...Im biased cause he's great with the media but I do think he's a capable guy..
what more can kris Bryant do to prove he is the best 3rd baseman that we have at every level? the guy is ready right now
He just made a nice play at 3rd..
Why do the Cubs need a 5 year rebuild when the Red Sox did a 1 year rebuild and the Cardinals 0 year rebuild even after losing Pujols?
Because those organizations were better off in the first place? If you recall it took the Red Sox a long time to win but once they did they've kept it up other than the bobby v debacle...to me, this rebuild is like wash or teams like that..or an expansion team...first time EVER the cubs are doing this..just be patient then rip them if it doesnt pan out...and you'll know when that time is right
Interesting Q & A on Kris Bryant. What is the word on him and other top prospects as far as leadership and intangibles go? Do the Cubs need to bring in some vetern leadership to teach these young guys how to be professionals? That sounds like a path they don't want to pay for right?
Its prob something they do need and i would expect another DeJesus type player for that...its needed but if things go bad it cant be blamed cause they didnt have a vet..thats what coaches are for too..soriano , wood before retirement, dejesus they were all there long enough to have an impact...but Im sure they'll sign one that has value for that
What's the latest buzz on who is replacing Dale?
I think AJ Hinch is losing steam..at least if you ask any scout out here...they arent fans of his..from the start I though the Latin angle would be prominent and I still believe it will be...Based on who they brought in I would go with Dave Martinez but I wasnt in on the interview..the fact that they are still waiting means no one wowed them
So whats up with brett jackson and vitters? Are they at least tradeable? Or will they just play in iowa forever
Yeah, they are on their last legs in the organization...vitters moving to outfield and trying to find his game through some new mental approaches and jackson is still just a mess at the plate..both were hurt though...doesnt look good.
Every story about the possible new Cubs manager is about teaching and getting along with the Latin players coming up. What about leadership? Why isn't that mentioned as requirement no. 1? I hate to say it but lifetime bench coaches can be great X and O guys, but how many turn into good let alone great managers?
Absoultely was mentioned by Theo at the press conference when they fired Dale..he made a big deal of it..bottom line is best candidate is good with latin players and a great leader...
Do you see CJ Edwards as a starter or reliever......any chance he could develop into a closer for the Cubs?
Im going to say yes to all those things...I dont think we know what he'll be at the ML level..you let him start until he tells you otherwise with his pitching...smaller guys have made it
Most likely Cub(s) to be traded this offseason? Samarjdzia (no long term deal), Schierholtz (coming off career year), Castro (please dont), Vitters (prospect or suspect), B. Jackson (prospect or suspect), Barney (is he really worth 2m per year with arbitration looming), Wood (career year), W. Castillo (trade piece for pitching).
No way is Castillo being traded, lets start there...and no on wood..the rest can be had but I dont think they'll just send Samardzija packing...has to be a good deal...sure, schierholtz could be dealt but prob need him to fill a spot until others are ready..
I like all the kids, but where are the left handed hitting kids? All the studs are righthanded and only Vogelbach is a lefty but doesn't get mentioned.
Yeah, thats why they keep scouring the waiver wire for lefties..bogusevic, sweeney..vogelbach has rizzo in his way..he'll be moved..no other option
You Tweeted out that not all things are good re Cubs, what's the current "bad" news? Who do you predict will be the 53rd manager?
I mentioned on the radio that I wasnt getting a good report on Soler -- keeping in mind he was hurt -- but scouts are down on him and now he left for some residency issues...everytime he gets going something stalls him...and he hasnt been the same hitter since getting hurt..small sample size though...not as discplined..hope he isnt getting anxious..tough call on your last question...If it comes down to who they interviewed I think it could be Acta
How soon before we see almora in the show?
If he has a healthy 2014 then I say 2015..
While he's saying he wants to stay at 3B, do you think his fastest path to the Bigs is there or OF?
Why would it be? He's used to 3rd and there is a gaping hole there at wrigley...3rd base..Id start him in 2014..not everyone has to have the same path
Why haven't the Cubs started to ask Baez to start playing third or second base? Also, do you think Jeff and Starlin are going to be on the team after the end of next season?
They are/will be..by spring he'll move around..their feeling was if he can play SS he can play elsewhere..we'll see it in spring some but then he'll go back to SS at AAA I believe...
How has Bryant's defense looked in the AFL? Can he stay at third or do you see him moving to first?
He could eventually move to first if there was an opening...certainly has the body type and he will fill in but with Rizzo there I dont see it unless one of them changes teams..Now go back to your chipolte
Why are you pushing for a Latin manager? Wouldn't simply stating a Spanish speaking manager suffice ?
Doesnt have to be the manager but all things equal may as well be...they need a strong latin authority..doesnt get any stronger than the manager..bench coach is fine too...its not just speaking spanish..its relating a little better..where they came from, what they're dealing with, etc.
Do you see Theo and Co. going after some mid-level pitchers again this offseason to sign to 1 year deals? If so, who would be the targets and why not roll the dice with Lincecum? Guy wants a 1 year deal to prove himself, why not in Chicago?
I could see something like that..sure...even to bve flipped at deadline..they def will bring in some arms in that regard but they are better set now than a yr ago...Jake Arrieta gets a big shot next spring...No. 5 is wide open in my opinion..but I like your thinking...
Any chance the Cubs try to buy low on Halladay or do they go after a Josh Johnson in the yearly buy low/sell high maneuver?
See last answer...they wont spend on any of these guys but sure those are names to be flipped like Lincencum...theoretically at least..
Who would you like to see as the next Cubs manager and who will it most likely be?
I kind of wanted to Sandy Alomar Jr to come in again to be interviewed but doesnt look like thats the case..maybe he's too honest..a poor man's Ozzie..or maybe they didnt like his interview last time..the right combo consists of that latin presence with ability to implement front office plan, not worry about wins and losses right away and be sabermetrically friendly..
Due to the lack of immediate high end pitching prospects, I've been reading reports that the Cubs might kick the tires on a ace like David Price. I know Price is a stud and would require top end prospects for him. 1. Who would the Cubs be willing to move for a guy of his caliber? 2. What is the mindset of an organization regarding trading prospects for a proven young starter. 3. Do the Cubs have any untouchable prospects?
I just dont see it...you;re locking up a TON of money before youre ready to win...youre giving up on valuable prospects you have under control as well...you'll end up short position player wise..I would spend like that AFTER we know certain spots are locked up like Bryant at 3rd, Baez wherever, etc. Just not time for that investment in a pitcher in my opinion
I understand the people who want all of the prospects to start next year in Chicago. I come form what seems to be the minority of Cubs fans and that says give them time and have more trust (which I understand after years of losing is hard) in Theo and Co. where do you stand?
Each case is different..MOST of the time you're right...but there are guys that can be fast-tracked..I def would not have a problem if ONE (Like Bryant) started in the majors ..maybe , maybe Baez too but if pushed I dont think he should..anyway, you also stagger these guys so they arent all struggling at once up here...by the time bryant goes through some ups and downs then Baez comes then Almora then Soler...at least in a perfect world..anway, you cat go wrong with another 3 months in minors but it doesnt HAVE to be that way and you do speed things up a little
Seeing Bryant, Soler and Almora playing live this week, have your projections when we'll see them in the big leagues changed?
Not really..and Soler isnt here so Im missing him...If anything Im more convinced that Bryant could start next year knowing they arent winning anything but I think he's fine to learn at the big league level..Almora needs more time but the ball jumps off his bat..I know one thing, he could play center in the majors now..
you spoke earlier about allowing for a 5 year rebuild...next year is year 3; shouldn't we expect the Cubs to be at the very least flirting with .500? Especially when beers at Wrigley are $8+.
Nope..cause its not about .500...thats the biggest problem i think fans have...they dont get that being bad is PART OF THE STRATEGY...it allows them to take advantage of NOT trying to get to .500 and the like..if .500 was the goal the Cubs would not have about 10 prospects they acquired over the least 2 seasons...they would have stood pat at the deadline and won a few more games...Ive said it over and over again...this rebuild may be gradual but I think its more in line for a 90 loss to 90 victory thing...the gradual stuff is being down now in the minors etc...so I ask you whats the diff if you go 62, 70, 81, then 90 wins ot 70, 70, 70 then 90 wins...all the same until you contend..at least in this case..hope that makes sense
being done down in the minors I meant...
Jesse, I've been reading on how highly people think of brad ausmus as a manager. How come the cubs haven't interviewed him?
That is one I dont have the answer to, especially with the San Diego connection..
What is the chance the cubs go after David Price, or the that one guy we all know who from Detroit? I'm really hesitant about giving up 1 much less 2 of our big 4 for a two year rental.
I would not do it and I dont think they will
Why did the Cubs trade Garza for Olt when they knew they had Bryant coming? Almora, Lake, and Soler are the future outfielders so please don't tell me Bryant might be moved to the outfield. We need pitching!
Well they got CJ Edwards in the deal..Olt was alomst a throw in compared to last season when Texas would not part with him....you can never have too many...what if Bryant gets hurt..waht if those OF dont pan out and Bryant has to go out there...we know they all wont pan out..baseball is a funny game..a yr from now we might be tallking about Olt and not Bryant...I doubt it but who knows..put them all out there and see what pans out
If you were handicapping the race to majors among Cubs prospects, how would you handicap it between Alcantarra, Bryant, Olt, P. Johnson, Soler, and of course Baez.
Unless he's truly a liability (IE: Dusty with arms), isn't the manager position not all that important?
I understand what you mean but the face of your team with the media and also the man who deals with the players every day cant be irrelevant..ESPECIALLY for a rebuilding, young team..leadership has to mean something right?
Price for Castro and Voglebach? Who says no? Cubs get #1 starter that they can afford to sign (6 years $150M frontloaded so the first 3 years are worth more than last 3 years) and rays get 1st base prospect and a young SS who is tied up contractually for next few years. Then sign Choo to the same type of contract (only for 4-5 years) and let him be the lead off man for the kids and teach them when they start coming up this year. Lineup and rotation should be fairly well set going into 2015 when you are really looking to compete.
There's a lot to be said for your sentiment but I think you're one yr ahead...thats my opininon..you only get one shot at this in terms of doing it right ..they just got out from under a bunch of contracts and then signed Edwin Jackson who they are kind of stuck with now...I'd play it safe for one more offseason...what if Baez cant handle short, what if Rizzo gets hurt..I know a guy like Price can get it done but I just think its a gamble to give things away now..one more yr but thats me..not saying you are 100 percent wrong
Thanks for the chat. Do you think the Cubs will look at a manager that has more of a pitching background (i.e. Maddux)? With the lack of high-end pitching prospects, they seem to need more of a pitching influence than a offensive influence.
Other way around..with latin hitters coming..they want someone that can talk to them...bosio is fine and they can find a pitching coach if needed...I think the right hitting guy that can communicate etc is needed..
When do Cubs fans start to lose patience? If they hire a nobody manager and field a crappy team again, then I think they have one year, tops. On top of the fact that Ricketts has had the team now for like four years and can't even finalize a stadium deal. Come on!
I would agree one more yr of flipping players etc. after that..you go with what you have and fill in some positons and start to keep a real team together...maybe even this year if some guys come up and hold jobs...but they wont start up here so youll need to move the schierholtz's (or whoever) of the world..after that, get these guys entrenched...no doubt...they know this..and cant way for it either
Jesse, I don't think the question about .500 was about being permanently around .500, but in order for them to truly compete in 3 years, they have start showing signs of winning sometime soon. I mean, they have to get better at some point, right? It won't be a near-100 loss team to automatically being in line for the playoffs, so getting close to .500 ball this year I think is key.
Again, they'll start winning when they stop flipping vets etc. thats coming to an end..Theo has said as much...I thought maybe it would come to an end this yr but it will be next...
Ever since the season ended I have been seeing a lot of people getting fed up with Theo and his master plan. I don't get it. It's only been two years. And a rebuild like this takes a long time. Does he deserve any of this flak that fans are throwing on him?
No one is going to be perfect but I think they are even happier than we think...huge diff in one yr..Im with you...this is what a REAL rebuild looks like...I dont care if in the process Ricketts is saving money..this is the right way to do it..small market, big market, medium market doesnt change how to rebuild the right way...only diff is whats its "over" a big market team should spend to keep the contending going for a long, long time...If thats not the case then Ricketts is in trouble
Sorry folks thats it for today...lots of good questions and some I didnt get to...email me at firstname.lastname@example.org if you want something answered...check out the cubs blog for a Q and A with Bryant and a video with Bryant and Almora...plus more later tonight/tonight and tomorrow..thanks again...its up to 90 here. sorry