Cubs open Day 2 with selection of high school righty

Note: I’ve noticed questions in the comments section about college commitments. Like other sports, a verbal commitment is non-binding. No National Letters of Intent have been signed this early. The college is simply a fall-back option for players if they don’t get the bonus/team/situation they’re seeking. If the club is unable to come to terms with a player, it receives a compensation pick in next year’s Draft. Hope that clears everything up.

The Cubs began day two of the 2012 First-Year Player Draft by selecting high school right-hander Duane Underwood with their second-round pick (No. 67 overall).

Underwood, a 6-foot-2, 205-pounder, is out of Pope High School in Georgia. He will turn 18 on July 20.

He is committed to Georgia.

“There are times he looked like one of the better high school arms in the Draft class, a guy who belonged in that conversation with a lot of the arms that went yesterday [in the first round and Compensation Round A],” Draft expert Jonathan Mayo said. “Other times he looked lost, like he didn’t belong in the second round.”

Underwood’s fastball sits in the low 90s with the ability to reach 95-96. He also throws a late-breaking curveball and deceptive changeup,

His poise, athleticism and knowledge of the game show potential to help him evolve as a player, but he isn’t yet a finished product.

“Some days he threw 96, 98, other days he couldn’t get the ball anywhere in the strike zone,” Baseball America’s Jim Callis said. “There is some upside here.”

Round 3, Ryan McNeil, RHP, Nipomo (Calif.) High School

McNeil is a 6-foot-3, 210-pound right-hander who went 7-1 with eight complete games in 11 appearances last season. He posted a 1.40 ERA and struck out 84 with a .182 average against in 65 innings. He is committed to Long Beach State.

“Good athlete, good pitching frame,” Mayo said. “He’s got a ways to go, a little more of a project.”

Round 4, Josh Conway, RHP, Coastal Carolina

Conway’s junior season at Coastal Carolina ended after nine games because of an elbow injury, but the righty already has underwent Tommy John surgery. He was 4-1 with a 2.14 ERA with 50 strikeouts in 54 2/3 innings before his injury.

Conway is 6-foot-1, 175 pounds and went 8-2 with a 2.69 ERA with 70 strikeouts in 77 innings as a sophomore. He also was named to the Cape Cod League All-Star team last summer, going 2-0 with a 1.88 ERA with 28 strikeouts in 28 2/3 innings.

He was originally selected out of high school by the Braves in the 42nd round of the 2009 Draft.

“Let him rehab him with your own staff and watch him over the course of that time and then take your time with him and it could end up being a nice value for this draft,” Mayo said.

Conway throws a fastball, slider and changeup, all of which can be solid average pitches.

“Here’s another upside play, who could have been a sandwich or second-round guy if not for the injury,” Callis said.

Round 5, Anthony Prieto, LHP, Americas (Texas) High School

Prieto is a 5-foot-11, 170-pound high school lefty out of Texas. He missed half of the season because of a forearm strain, but reportedly hit 97 mph last year, Callis said.

“This is a guy who’s relatively new to pitching and has shown some pretty good things,” Mayo said. “He’s another guy who isn’t the biggest guy in the world, but because he’s a lefty gets an extra look from scouts.”

Round 6, Carl “Trey” Lang, RHP, Gateway (Ariz.) Community College

Lang was originally a two-way player before focusing more on pitching this season. The 6-foot-3, 225-pound righty projects as a reliever.

“Words can’t even explain the feelings I’m going through right now! Blessed to have such great family and friends!” Lang tweeted (@T23Lang).

Round 7, Stephen Bruno, 3B, Virginia

Bruno, a right-handed batter, played all over the infield at Virginia, hitting .370 with six home runs and 23 doubles doubles this season. A redshirt sophomore, he played only seven games last year because of an injury.

Round 8, Michael Heesch, LHP, South Carolina-Beaufort

Heesch, Chicago native who pitched at Illinois-Chicago before transferring to South Carolina-Beaufort two years ago, is a 6-foot-5, 245-pound lefty. He went 9-3 with a 2.21 ERA this season and had 118 strikeouts in 122 1/3 innings while walking only 13.

Round 9, Chadd Krist, C, California

Krist is 5-foot-11, 190-pound catcher who hit .294 with four home runs and 19 doubles for the Bears this season.

Round 10, Chad Martin, RHP, Indiana

Martin is a 6-foot-7, 230-pound righty who posted a 4.79 ERA in 19 games (nine starts) this season.

– Cash Kruth



You are such an idiot, Get a life!!!

Now wait a minute, leave the Bears out of it. Please

wow you are an inpatient idiot. please stop being a Cub “fan.” You obviously know nothing about baseball. Let me guess, you are one of those Bears fans that expects them to be in Super Bowl contention every year too.

Real fans of baseball understand that Theo and company cannot walk on water, but for gods sake, this is their first draft. Reply back in 2015 if you see no progress or no plan. As a season ticket holder, I’ll sit thru a couple of years of tear down and rebuild the right way as long as I see progress. It’s hard, but very neccessary. A professional minor league system from rookie ball to AAA would finally be a very welcome sight here.

you sire deserve a metal

ROAR! The new management didn’t immediately do what *I* think they should and therefore they are stupid! ROAR ROAR!

Have to love people like you. You make me feel so much better about myself.

Love the Amora pick. Theo should take every high schooler with upside for the next 3 years. If taught thru the system ‘the cub way’, this years class will start to come up maybe in late 2014 or 2015. Then spend like hell for top free agents. From that time forward, the cubs should have a steady stream of Cub Way players in the pipe line

Hear, hear! We don’t need a different hitting and pitching philosophy at every level. Finally, like under Leo Mazzone we will have a consistent system. We don’t need to prop up the foundation. It won’t work! I believe in what they are doing now! Albert is a typical know nothing sports fan.

wow dude learn something about baseball and then you can talk all you want. THEY TOLD THE FANS THAT IT WOULD BE A PROCESS! not an overnight deal. you keep cheering for soriano and the players “they spent money on”.

Obviously you have NO idea how the MLB draft works. You build within your system. The way the Cubs were doing it for so many years was not the the way to be a consistent winner. Trust me these guys have a clue what they are doing it may take 3 or 4 years for this team to be contending. Your little rant is a joke probably just like you. Just stop posting if its going to be worthless reading. YOU BUM!!!

It means they have to throw enough money at him to change his mind about attending Georgia.

It says the Cubs second round pick is “committed to Georgia.” Does this mean that the cubs have to wait for him to play college ball for 4 years until he joins the team? Please advise. Thank you.

no, it means that they need to convince him to sign with them rather than go play college ball. IF he decides to go play college ball, the cubs will receive a corresponding compensatory pick in next year’s draft.

You don’t get a compensatory pick if your compensatory pick does not sign.You do on Rounded top pics but not compensatory picks.If you choose to argue that,please,look it up!!

No Archie. It basically means that if the Cubs cant sign the kid he will honor his committment to whereever he is going (i.e. Georgia).

No, if he decides to go to college he’ll attend Georgia; he committed to that school.

yeah I hope he does more in three years than Obama has!

You call yourself cubbielifer, but you rip on Theo’s picks, you’re not a cubbielifer, just a cubbie complainer. Theo inherited the same thing Obama inherited when he took office – someone else’s garbage.

LOVE the Theo/Bama comparison; brilliant!


Actually, The Cubs were one of the cheaper teams regarding the draft during the Trib years. Soooo….your an idjit.

Yes, see Matt Wieters in 2007. Knew the couldn’t sign him b/c of money, and they drafter Vitters I believe. Look where Vitters is now and then ask yourself what Matt Wieters is doing these days?

Thanks for the explanations guys.

Hoystein has dissapointed with a few of his moves so far on the MAJOR LEAGUE roster but we were advised to be patient regarding THE DRAFT AND THE “REBUILD”. I for one look forward to seeing this draft play out over the next 3-5 years and see if they are promoted or traded for other major leaguers. Either way I think Hoystein is doing what is needed to be done, beginning with these draft picks.
Now, if he can only relieve the burden of even playing Soriano, Sveum would instantly become a smarter manager.

To all posters advising that we wait a few years to see how this draft class develops: several of their top picks already have “strong commitments” to colleges, and one would assume that they knew they would probably be drafted but were committed anyway. Translation: if you want to see this draft class develop, you’re going to have to watch a lot of college baseball and hope the Cubs “redraft” them after they graduate…and that they’re still worth drafting. I for one don’t understand drafting so many high school players that already have strong commitments…especially, as stated above, since they essentially lose those picks entirely if the kids go to college (as they should).
PS if Hoyer and Epstein are such geniuses, why are the teams they assembled (Boston and SD) in last place? Shouldn’t those franchises be in awesome shape for having had them in charge?

Like your thinking on that last part. Kind of scary isn’t it? So after five years and they are gone will we be in last place again? I remain optimistic about what the future holds. Joey, after watching Sorry play over the last few games he needs to go somehow. I look for a handfull of these prospects to come up after the allstar game when we are 20+ games out of first. This is going to take a couple of years-2014 before we become competative again.

“…if the kids go to college (as they should).”

Why should they go to college? Many of these kids have absolutely no desire to go to college and only commit so they can continue to play ball if they don’t get drafted out of HS. College isn’t for everyone. Most people shouldn’t be going to college.

wow cubbiewubbies everywhere lets win now lets win now! if your not willing to give these guys at least three years go cheer for the white sox we don’t need you!

there is no way these kids are going to college. they are not going to turn down the money to go play for two more years in hopes of maybe, maybe improving their stock. they will sign

Castro got Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder: Symptoms of ADHD

A person with ADHD may have some or all of the following symptoms:

Difficulty paying attention to details and tendency to make careless mistakes in school or other activities; producing work that is often messy and careless

•easily distracted by irrelevant stimuli and frequently interrupting ongoing tasks to attend to trivial noises or events that are usually ignored by others
•inability to sustain attention on tasks or activities
•difficulty finishing schoolwork or paperwork or performing tasks that require concentration, like finishing Double Plays
•frequent shifts from one uncompleted activity to another
•disorganized work habits
•forgetfulness in daily activities (for example, missing appointments, forgetting to bring lunch) Looking in the Outfield while Pitcher is thowing to the plate.
•failure to complete tasks such as homework or chores, also completing plays.
•frequent shifts in conversation, not listening to others, not keeping one’s mind on conversations, looking at all the good looking women in the stands.

Castro could have Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder he needs to be tested.

Steve, let’s hope Hoysein understands the draft if you don’t. I would give them the benefit of the doubt about being able to sign most of these guys. But you do bring up a sobering point about Boston and SD….yikes.

Im confused how the MLB draft works. If they draft a high school kid and he commits to college do they lose out on him at some point?

nevermind just needed to read above…kind of scary

I expected the Cubs to win 1/3 of their games in this 1st rebuilding year under the new management. I’m right on schedule and looking forward to the future.

I really would like to get to one world series in my lifetime, I’m 61 now.

me too will be 64 in july only have one thing left to see in sports the cubs in a world series!!

You are lucky. I’m 74!!

lots of so called cub fans do not want to wait for the new regime to build, well we can not win with what we have now and as far as bringing up vitters rizzo and a few others, nothing hurts a ballplayer more than failure and the young ones cannot handle it well, bring them up in sept let them play lets see what the roster looks like next year, me i move castro to second barney to short for now till we can replace him i know everybody loves barney but if you look at his stats he is at best a off the bench player, like sevral ofthe starters this year, give it time 3 yrs and then if we still suck, then we can get on the new regime, the ricketts do not care its about money to them, anyway go cubs beat the brewers tonight

To the sox fans trolling on this board……suck it!

I am going to be patient with them, but I have to say, so far, if these guys are such geniuses, why did they trade away one of the best left handed relief pitchers in baseball in Sean Marshall, for a couple of guys who may or may not do anything. Left handed pitching is the hardest thing to find, and if you have it, you don’t trade it away for Maybe’s…. You get bonafide talent, and I know Sappelt isn’t bonafide, and Wood looks like an average starting pitcher. We could have used Marshall a lot this season, probably won 5-6 more games with him in the bullpen. I just didn’t get that move, and don’t give me the “control” of the guy bs. Marshall wasn’t even that expensive at 5 million a year. Then you trade away Tyler Colvin for Ian Stewart? Stewart has showed me nothing so far, I liked Colvin as a hitter, he showed a lot in his rookie season, and then they basically gave up on him when he struggled last year, moved him up and down between majors and minors, and the kid lost confidence. But, I loved his stroke from the left side more than Stewart, Finally, Zambrano drove me as crazy as the next guy, and I didn’t mind getting rid of him if we could either A., get some real talent for him, but pay most of his salary, or B. Get not much of anything for him, but get someone to take the bulk of his salary. We did neither. We got a bum for him, and we paid 15 million of his contract for one year to be rid of him. I don’t know about you, but I would rather have kept Zambrano than give him away for Volstadt and pay that kind of money. I mean, Sveum is supposed to be a disciplinarian, couldn’t he have reined in Zambrano some???? I have just not been impressed with the Owners, the management, and the coaching thus far. I love getting rid of Marlin Byrd, and I hope they can move Soriano. I love Castro, Barney, Samarzja, Campana, Clevenger, and Lahair. Once the whole Free agent thing is up at the end of June, I hope they can bring up Jackson and Rizzo, and let them go crazy for the rest of the year and learn and make mistakes, that is how you become better. I do not like Soto, and hope they can dump him while he still has some value for some good young players and give the job to Clevenger. Put that kid Cardenas in the lineup at 3rd as well. Trade Dempster for some good young talent, and if you can get 4-5 good prospects for Garza, then move him also. We gave up 4-5 prospects for him, so let’s try to get the same kind of package back. I don’t move Marmol unless I can get some top prospects from a team like the Yankees. Someone has to get it thru his head to throw his damn fastball more, and get ahead in the count and then drop in the slider, which is devastating pitch when he is ahead in the count and has set up the hitter with fastballs previously. But, when he throws 5 of them in a row, any good major league hitter can time it and hit it hard. I am still not ready to give up on Marmol though unless we get overwhelmed with an offer. I love Campana, and would run him out there every day. I do not trade him!! His speed kills, and he is not a bad hitter, hitting .300 right now, and plays a real solid center field…..

Cubs “fans” are a little too high on the players on our current MLB squad.. If they were that good we wouldn’t be 18-36. The triumvirate should take advantage of the new playoff system and the fact that so many teams are going to be buyers vs. sellers… Dismantle the team as much as possible and that even means trading Starlin Castro… I know it sounds stupid, since he will be under team control til 2014-15 (sometime around there), but I don’t see the Cubs competing until after that point. If we would be able to lock down some top notch pitching prospects, in addition to what we could get for Dempster, Garza, and anyone else we can trade… I say DO IT! If we are going to play for the future, we truly have to play for the future. Keep Rizzo and Jackson at AAA until it absolutely makes sense and we have their rights for the longest possible time…

Bingo! You hit it on the head. It would be stunning, and I’m not saying it wouldn’t hurt, but Starlin, though young doesn’t have the natural baseball instincts all round. Can he hit, he’ll yea. Can he work a count, no. Does mind wander. Yes. Barney has 1/2 the talent, but he makes up for some of it ( not all) with baseball acumen. You have your shortstop of the future in Baez. Trade Castro for a 1 & 4, or 2 & 3 of a top teams prospects; hello Arizona (great pitching prospects). If you don’t trade him a move to 2nd or ‘ahem’ left. A future outfield of Castro, Jackson and Amora in a few years sounds good to me.

Steve Bohanan, just curios about nothing hurting a young player as much as failure. Castro was brought up young, he is a good hitter but not mentally ready…does this constitue falure? If Castro wasn’t brought up until this season do you think he would be a good hitter WITH a brain? Does his hitting prowess not put him as a successful YOUNG call up? Why can’t the Cubs roll the dice sooner rather than later with players like Vitters (odds are he will play as well if not better than Stewart), Rizzo (odds are HE will play as well as LaHair if not better AND facillitate LaHair’s move to LF) and Jackson (odds are HE will play as well or better than either Campana or DeJesus). If any of these young players can be brought up to replace ALREADY FAILING players then they should be given the chance to buck the odds. 103 years of no World Series wins….I think we’re allowed to gamble with the youth instead of saving them, as there is NO gurantee Vitters, Rizzo and Jackson will play SO well in the minors that they CAN’T fail once reaching the majors. There is nothing left to gain by keeping them in the minors accept the all too revered “service time” delay.
WHO CARES IF WE LOSE SOME FUTURE CONTROL? At that time the Ricketts can spend big bucks on sure things rather than the likes of a Soriano dud. Especially Vitters, bring him up and give him his only opportunity to BE A CUB, no better time than now since Stewart is sucking wind and making Soriano look like Ty Cobb (hard to do).

I have been a cub fan all my life and I’m 54. My father is 87 and has never saw them in a world series. They didn’t have tv the last time they were in one. This will be the 2nd year in a row I haven’t spent money to go watch them in person. When you draw 3 million plus a year you should try to win every year. Looks like Ricketts hired some big name front office for a couple of million to get people to attend even if he is making no financial effort to win.

you are probably one of the people that agreed with bush when he went into iraq and didnt even find a slingshot,but yet thousands are dead.But bush and chaney walked away millionaires….bush=oil….chaney=halliburton. I still THINK BUSH AND CHANEY SACRIFICED THOSE PEOPLE IN THE WORLD TRADE CENTER ON 9-11. (funny you cant look it up anymore)hmmm.

Lol Obama inherited garbage then created a landfill. Bad analogy.

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Mark Monaco, I could not agree more with everything you said.

To the haters hating on real Cubs fans who are sick of losing, bite me. The teabagger owner is a chump. We rank 15th in payroll. Get rid of Soriano and Dempster and we rank 29th. 29th !!!! Obviously the owner does not want to put money in the team and has the gall to beg for taxpayer money to upgrade Wrigley. I bet Theo wants his job back in Boston. I’m 43, been a Cubs fan for 33 years and finally done with them, until we get a new owner.

Considering the ricketts just bought the team a few years ago,you’re gonna have a long wait

Thanks, and I am 43 also. Been a fan since I was 7 years old. I was at every home playoff game in 84, 89, 98, 03, 07, and 08. Have been a season ticket holder since 84, and in 03 I went to every road playoff game in Atlanta and Florida. I am a diehard, but I am just getting really tired of this team, the owners, the management, the coaches, etc. They seem to bring in smart baseball people that become dumb when they get here… Dusty Baker, Lou Piniella, just to name a few. Jury is still out on The triumvirate…… and Sveum et al hasn’t impressed me a whole lot yet either, other than I like that they are aggressive on the basepaths, that is a definite upgrade over that moron Quade……. I am also so sick of the constant bringing back of retread players….. Koyie Hill is the latest example. Hendry was a master at that…… I know we have had a lot of injuries at catcher, and they are hard to find, and I know he is good defensively even though he can’t hit for shit, but I am just not impressed by this new regime so far. I will give it time, but I think these guys are just another example of guys who say all the right things, dress well, young and educated, but I wonder if he wasn’t just in the right place at the right time with Boston…..Keep in mind, they had a ton of talent when he took over the GM position with them before 04…… I hope they are successful, but so far, I have been less than impressed with their moves…..

I am an educated baseball fan (i.e. cub fan). Point #1: the cubs did have a top 5 payroll for a number of years recently. And you got 2 sweeps in the playoffs in 07 & 08. Point 2: the Ricketts, who haves owned the team for TWO years, have built a state of the art facility in the Dominion, are NOW building a great facility in Mesa, AT their expense. Why is it the white sox can threaten to leave for Florida ( did they go?), and get a state supported park, that we are still paying for, and the team on the north side that brings in more $ from the park and a great bar/restaurant area has to beg for 1/2 the money for there renovation! Smart dollars will be spent in the very near future. Hey! Great idea , we could have signed Pulos for $240 mil., and won a game or two more!! Come on, patient my friends

It amazes me how many Cubs fans lack common sense. I’m a season ticket holder and want to see them win right now as much as anyone… but I was also the one saying for years that in order for the Cubs to win a World Series, the Tribune Co would first need to sell the Cubs. What so many of you do not understand is that the Tribune Co did just enough to keep the uneducated fans “Happy”. Yes they had one of the higher payrolls in baseball, but they also had one of the worst farm systems. This is not the fault of Ricketts or Theo or Jed. This is the hand they were dealt and what they are trying to fix. What did you expect Theo and company to do this off season? Sign Pujols or Fielder to ridiculous deals? Look at the successful teams in baseball year in and year out and you will find a team with a good minor league system. Look at the bleeping Cardinals for example. Wainwright goes down last year and they win a World Series. This year, they let Pujols go, Carpenter has been hurt all season and they haven’t skipped a beat. Why is that? Because they have a great farm system!!!! They have had players like Allen Craig, Matt Carpenter and Lance Lynn step in and play great baseball. As those of you continue to bash Ricketts and his management, ask yourself if you know anything about the new acadamy they are building in the Dominican Republic… it will be the largest in the country! Why would they do this? So that they can better scout players in Latin America. They do not want just 1 or 2 top prospects for Cubs fans to talk about, they want dozens!!! When you only have 1 or 2, you take the risk that they will become the next Corey Patterson or Felix Pie. Most prospects do not pan out and I don’t care how good of a GM you might be, you will make a mistake and trade for or draft a bust. But if you load up on talent like the Cubs are trying to do, you will also fine the next Yadier Molina, David Freeze or Lance Lynn. Every organization needs these young cheap players in order to build around… Even the Yankees and Red Sox have their Robinson Cano’s and Dustin Pedrioa’s. Sure, the Cubs could go out next year and sign a number of top free agents and please every idiot who says they are not doing anything to win. But do you honestly think 3 or 4 high priced free agents will fix this mess they were handed? What happens if those free agents do not pan out? Now we have a ton of payroll committed to bad players again (Think Soriano, Zambrano, etc) and we will continue to be bad. Added to their problems is that they do not have much talent to trade in order build up the farm system. They have to pay teams to take players like Zambrano and can’t even give Soriano away. But with what little they had, they are still trying to turn short term assets into long term assets. Unfortunately it just can’t happen overnight. Other GMs in baseball are smart too, they are not going to give away their best prospects for Sean Marshall. I have no doubt that Rickett’s will spend the money when the time is right, but they need to do it after they have a core of good young talent so they can spend the money in the right areas and fill the holes in need. Spending money now on high priced free agents who may or may not be as good in 3 or 4 years would be stupid and would assure Cubs fans many more years of disappointment.

Well said, true Cub fan.

I agree with you.Farm system for LA dodgers out here replaced 59 hodges,neal,furillo,snider with tommy davis,willie davis,wes parker,lefeverbe,they in turn were replaced.fresco thompson,al campanis ALL >>GOOD scouts WORKED TOGETHER to W<W,W!!!!!GIVE Theo, Jed,Ricketts a chance.

I agree with everything you said except the part about Sean Marshall. You are right, other GM’s are smart, and may not give away best prospects for Sean Marshall, so why then did we trade him? Why would you trade away one of the top left handed setup men in all of baseball, who was young, and wasn’t under a high priced, long term contract, I am so sick of hearing about this being under team control as the excuse. That was a dumb move, and they have followed that up with other dumb moves with the Colvin trade, and the Zambrano trade. I am all for blowing this thing up, building the farm system, etc. But, that doesn’t automatically guarantee that you will win if you have idiots making dumb decisions with the few assets that you do have….

I hear you loud and clear Mark. Both of those trades do not look very good right now as Colvin is hitting better than Stewart and the Cubs desperately need relief pitching. But while it is easy to dissect a trade after it has gone bad, I 100% believe they made the right moves. I will start with the Sean Marshall trade… Marshall was signed for the remainder of this year. (The Reds have since extended him for another year or 2 by giving him more money.) As a left handed reliever who was coming off a very good year, he was definitely what we all considered to be an asset to the team. But at that point just a short term asset. I think we all knew that the Cubs were not going to contend this year. So Theo and Jed traded Marshall for Wood and Dave Sappelt and I think a low A shortstop. By all means Wood is not going to win a Cy Young award, but he was considered by most to be a nice young arm that will be under team control for a number of years to come. He can still be a capable 5th or 6th starter. We needed the extra starters badly a year ago. The key is we will still have him for a few more years while we would have lost Marshall unless we committed more money to him. Now Sappelt is a little more interesting. He has a little pop in the bat and can steal a few bases. I have read that he projects to be a 4th outfielder, but still could turn out to be a very nice player. Again he is under team control for a number of years and by all means can be an asset in years to come at a cheap price. Also keep in mind that Marshall isn’t exactly lighting it up in Cincy. He inherited the closer job when Madson got hurt and lost that job (Even though Dusty never should have given it to him to begin with.) As far as the Stewart trade, both Colvin and Stewart were coming off bad years. The Cubs needed a 3rd baseman after Ramirez left in free agency. I really like the trade at the time, not because I thought Stewart was going to miraculously turn it around, but because there was a chance he might and his ceiling was much higher than Colvin’s. Stewart was still young and it was only a couple of years ago that he was one of the top prospects in baseball (Ranked much higher than Colvin) I looked at it as sometimes it takes these prospects a little longer than some and had hoped the change in scenery might do him some good. Unfortunately the gamble didn’t work. But I still like the fact that they took that chance. Colvin can be a nice player, but will probably never be a stud. Stewart still had that potential. Most times trades like that do not work out, but sometimes you can catch lightning in a bottle and it would have looked really good had it worked. Had Hendry and the Tribune Co given Josh Hamilton that opportunity after they drafted him in the Rule 5 draft, we’d be much better off right now. Instead they immediately traded him to the Reds (I think for cash) who traded him to Texas for Edinson Volquez. The rest is history. My point is I’m all for the Cubs taking some chances on high upside guys right now. I do not fault them for trading for Stewart. In the same breath, I love the fact that they drafted 7 pitchers (Drafting pitcher is always a gamble) in a row this year who are all big, athletic guys with fastballs in the low to mid 90s with high upside. I’m guessing most of those guys will not pan out, but if 2 or 3 do, this will be remembered as a very nice draft.

The Marshall trade was a good one. He was in his last year and now signed an extension with the Reds for 16.5 in 3yrs (4.5 in 13 – 5.5 in 14 – 6.5 in 15). He’s already 29 (and would be our 4th oldest pitcher on the 40-man roster if he still was a Cub), only a reliever and NOT and option for the FUTURE.
This years he is clearly not capable of doing what he did the last 2 years. His ERA is 1.4 higher that 2011 (3.94 to 2.54), he has given up 2 HR’s in 20 innings (1 in 75 and 3 in 75 in 2011 and 2010) And why need a good setup man if you KNOW you’re not going to win a lot of games. We’ll need one in 2014.
It seems that everyone expected the Cubs to win 100 this year. It was clear from the beginning that the Cubs are rebuilding and that hust takes time. You can not get rid of the entire roster at once, but I like most of the moves they made so far. DeJesus is doing fine in RF filling the gap for 2 years till Szczur is ready. Stewart was a risk but there was no affordable 3B with the free agents and Vitters is clearly not ready. Letting go of Byrd is giving Campana and Mather a chance. Zambrano… good riddance. Maholm seems to be feeling more comfortable. Volstad is a bust, but then again he only has a 1yr contract.
Now it’s only a matter of getting rid of Soriano, Soto and Marmol.
Most people would like to see Dempster and Garza go at the trade deadline, but who would you put in the rotation instead of those guys? Dempster has been dominant in most of his starts and is only one of 3 starting pitchers with a sub 3.00 ERA who has a losing record, but that is just because today was the 1st time he had some run supports.
I should keep Demp and Garza for another year and look for 2 good starters who can develop in 2 and 3 pitchers in the nears future.
You just can’t trade all your starters for propects… you have to do it step by step and hope someone unexpected rises up from the minors to speed up the proces.

Also as far as the Zambrano trade, he had to go… I understand they are bad this year, but at least they are not fighting in the dugout. Look at the Castro incident the other night… Do you think Zambrano would have put his arm around Castro. I’m not saying Castro doesn’t need to be held accountable, but I believe it was handled the best way possible with the manager, Sveum calling him out. If it happens again, he will get benched. Bottom line is the team needs to stick together through the tough times and that was not happening with Big Z. He had to go.

Garza and Demptser have the best chance of bringing you impact prospects. Dempster is 35 and pitching some of the best baseball in his career. I believe there is not better time to trade him if you can get at least 1 quality guy. With Garza, I can go either way. I want to trust that Theo and Jed know what they are doing and will only give him up if they get 2 to 3 TOP prospects who are almost MLB ready. If they can not get that, they will try to lock him up long term. They nice thing about Garza is he is a horse that goes out there every 5 days. I’m a big believer in getting pitching that doesn’t get hurt. But that is also the reason they have the opportunity to get the most for him. Keep in mind that by shedding all this payroll, they can go out there and buy some quality pitching. I truly believe the Phillies have the blue print that they are trying to follow. Develop the some younger players and then go out and buy the key free agents.

I like to think what they might have in a few years…

C Wellington Castilla
1B Anthony Rizzo
2B Darwin Barney (I’d like to see an improvement here)
SS Starlin Castro
3B Javier Baez
LF Brett Jackson
CF Albert Almora
RF Jorge Soler (Wishful Thinking)

SP Cole Hamels
SP James Shields
SP Jeff Samardzija

If they were to trade players like Garza, Dempster and LaHair now and some of the pitchers they are drafting develop nicely (Plus I’m guessing they will have a top 3 pick in next years draft), who knows what other prospects could be coming up through the system… The key is building depth in your farm system.

the dream would actually be all those spects actually panning out…. you tell me the last team that won a WS and was made up of 95% homegrown talent. Just doesn’t happen in today’s MLB. Now those guys should be great trade bait for talent to get us to the WS. But I agree I would like to see them develop talent for position players while SPENDING BIG MONEY on SP. This offseason we should be able to spend big money on Hamels or Grienke. I don’t care if we overspend SOME (not alot like Sori).

Trades can be questioned until the cows come home. So far all the trades by Hoystein have been somewhat inconsequential with Marshall being the only one that holds out hope for the future with who we received in return. Stewart for Colvin is not a factor although it seems a completley unnecessary roll of the dice because knowing that we are going into the next 2-3 years (at least) of bad ball this team could have EASILY gotten away with Colvin in RF, giving HIM a chance to rebound instead of giving STEWART a chance to rebound and at the same time giving Vitters a “final” opportunity to make or break his career. We would still be bad but considering that both Stewart and DeJesus are NOT the end answers in either postion I don’t see the justification in just “buying time” with those two bad and adequate players at a higher payroll rather than the bad and adequate Vitters and Colvin, both of which have as much chance of being successful as Stewart and DeJesus. Not terrible moves just moves that prove anybody, including the highly touted Hoystein will make moves just…to make moves… certainly no Hendry like catastrophic blunders.

It’s great to see such commitment to pitching depth – I also believe that young arms are a little easier to use as trade bait since pitching is such a valuable asset for all 30.

JOEY JOEY JOEY…. when are you gonna learn man.. just curious as to why you think the Dejesus signing was a bad one? IF you were to check the stats which I know you didn’t you would see he is WELL above the ML average for a leadoff hitter (which i know he has hit other places lately but he was signed as a leadoff hitter). League average 1 hole = 258 ave with 322 obp 707 OPS…. dejesus= 278 ave 375 obp 787 OPS…….. thats a pretty good value for 4.25 mill per year… especially since he is close to putting up 1 WAR already…. the value of 1 WAR is right around 5 mill.

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