Baseball Diamond News

Friday, July 28, 2006

Tyler Colvin update

Well after starting out a little slow, Tyler Colvin has caught fire and is now hitting .316/.373/.544 with 6 steals in 114 at-bats for Single-A Boise (10 2b's, 2 3b's and 4 hr's). While catching fire, Colvin currently has a 10 game hitting streak. This is good because any positive signs shown by Tyler should make fans and the Cubs happy, as he wasn't thought of being a 1st round pick when the Cubs took him this year. One good thing about Tyler is by the time he is ever ready for the Majors, Dusty Baker and the staff should all be long gone and there will less chance of him being ruined by them.

Pitching Woes

Rich Hill didn't do anything to improve his chances of staying on the Cubs major league team nor did he do anything to help his prospect status. Besides Maddux and Zambrano the Cubs have been hard pressed to get starters to go more than 5 innings. This is going to lead to major problems in September when each relief pitcher has thrown 90+ innings. Today it will be Carlos Marmol on the mound and hopefully he can give the pen some rest today. The one thing he needs to do is start throwing more strikes and reducing his walks. I know that is stating the obvious, but he hasn't done much to improve on it since coming up, so maybe it needs to be stated.

One good pitching thing for the Cubs is in the few games he has pitched since his return, Michael Wuertz has looked pretty good out there. He is showing the slider that he had at the end of last season and much more control over his pitches compared to his stint in the beginning of the year. I don't expect much change in the pen now that the Cubs have traded Scott Williamson, as I doubt that Scott Eyre or Bob Howry are on the market and the way Ryan Dempster has pitched the last month who would want him?

Another complaint I have is why on earth does Dusty Baker keep starting Angel Pagan in LF over Matt Murton? Matt Murton is finally starting to hit the ball again and not popping everything up, but I guess that is the time to sit him. Yeah I know I like Pagan at the beginning of the year, but since his return from the injury he isn't even worthy of being a 5th OF, let alone a starting one.

Saturday, July 22, 2006

Let the Trades Begin

The Cubs made their first fire sale move today by sending Scott Williamson to San Diego for 2 prospects, pitchers Fabian Jimenez and Joel Santo. The word on Santo was he was the 16th rated prospect in the Padres organization according to Baseball America, but he hasn't put up any numbers in Single-A to show that he will be ranked in the top-30 of any team this season. Fabian Jimenez has more experience than Santo, but is also in Single-A and has never really put up any decent numbers. This trade brought nothing more to the organization, but it wasn't like Williamson was a hot commodity. Hopefully the Cubs bring up Michael Wuertz to take his place.

A side note, Sean Marshall had to leave today's game earlier with an oblique strain and is likely headed to DL. Rich Hill in my opinion deserves a recall for his performances in AAA since being demoted. If so, let's hope that Rich turns it around this time.

Thursday, July 20, 2006

Congrats to my sister

I heard last night that my sister Ariane passed her board exam that she was very worried about and did quite well. Congrats Red!!!! Keep it up.....

Tuesday, July 18, 2006

What is Phil Rogers on?

What in the world is Phil Rogers smoking and can I get some? In his column today he says 2 more years for Dusty isn’t a crazy idea? What has Dusty done well for the Cubs the last few years? This season Dusty has lost complete control of his team and clubhouse and it looks like he is even having a hard time getting the players to play at 70%. He tries to say that there are not any better options, maybe the Tribune has brainwashed Phil. I understand that Hendry has put this team together and should be axed for it, but Dusty hasn’t done any better in managing it and getting players to develop. Baker may be able to go to another city and help turn that team into a winner, but his time has come to an end in Chicago and I don’t think that a 2-year deal would do anything to benefit anyone but Dusty’s wallet.

Also at the end of the article he says the Cubs should trade Barrett and commit to “Hammering” Henry Blanco or some other defensive minded catcher. I understand Barrett has some short-comings behind the plate, but for a team that is last in offense in walks, on-base percentage, runs and slugging percentage getting rid of one of your top offensive players is just plain stupid.

Saturday, July 15, 2006

Happening Again.

Wasn't it just one season ago that the Cubs had problems with the players complaining about what the people in the booth are saying? Why is it happening again? What are some of these players thinking? They need to concentrate on the game in front of them and don't worry about what the booth says about you. Maybe if Todd Walker made the plays that he were suppose to then Bob Brenly wouldn't have had to criticize him. When a team is playing as bad as the Cubs have all year they should not be worried about anything, but making plays and improving.

Friday, July 14, 2006

Cubs should sign Marlon Byrd

Marlon Byrd was designated for assignment today by the Nationals and I think he would be a good low risk player to try and go acquire or even sign after 10 days. He would be an improvement over Mabry or Nevin and even if he doesn't pan out, it is not like Mabry or Nevin in the teams future plans. Also if he does well Byrd is still only 28 and could become a valuable piece off the bench or even a replacement in CF if Pierre is traded.

Mark Prior was also put on the DL today, which comes as no suprise to any Cub fan. They also brought up the great Ryan Theriot to take his place on the roster. I don't expect to see much of Theriot unless the Cubs get smart and finally dump Nefi Perez and Todd Walker soon, but I only see Walker being moved at deadline because not many GM's stupid enoug to want Nefi Perez.

Thursday, July 13, 2006

Baker here a little longer

Jim Hendry has decided that there still is no decision on Dusty Baker, so he will be here a little while longer. Can't hurt that the Cubs have won 3 in a row right before the break. Now as I stated in earlier columns I am all for a new manager and new coaches, but not for the sake of just doing it. I think the fact that Hendry doesn't have a replacement for him currently is another reason Baker is still around. Hopefully Hendry is searching for a viable replacement, but given the past track record of Hendry, I don't think thta is happening.

Wednesday, July 12, 2006

Cubs update

Things were starting to look good for the Cubs, just coming off 3 wins in a row verse the Brewers and it looked as if they were going to be in good shape to secure that 5th place spot... Then what happens, the All-Star game. Reports are that Carlos Zambrano got hit on his pitching elbow by a fungo bat during batting practice. UGH!!! Can it get any worse this year? First fans are stuck with the awful team that is called the Cubs, next the awful management, followed by the coaching and we already had bad luck with Lee breaking his wrist. Now this happens, all I have read is that he had x-rays and they were negative, besides that I can't find anything more detailed. I hope his arm is ok and not because I want the Cubs not to finish in last, but for the Cubs to have any type of future Zambrano needs to have a healthy arm.

Friday, July 07, 2006

The End is near

The header has to do with Dusty Baker's tenure. It is looking as if Dusty may not be returning after All-Star Break and that probably is a good thing. Unfortunately the same crappy team isn't leaving with him. I have heard rumors that Chris Speier might become the new interim manager for Dusty, but I really don't think that he will be around in 2007 if he gets the interim job.
I was hoping for a while that the Cubs would go out and get Lou Pinella , but after seeing what happened in Tampa not so sure he would be right fit in Chicago. I know you are probably thinking, but the Cubs have 3x more money to spend then the D-rays actually spend, but the ownership and upper management are both run incompetently. While the Cubs may have a much higher salary, it doesn't mean that they are using it right, 2.5 million a year for Nefi Perez would have never happened in Tampa.
So who do I think the Cubs should hire? I am not too positive at moment as I think that no matter who is hired now is a lame-duck, but Dusty needs to go, if not only for a PR move for the Cub fans. If I had to put a short list together it would be: Grady Little, Lou Pinella (I know I said not so sure up above), Gene Lamont, Billy Martin (I know he is dead, but he can't do worse than Dusty) and lastly Bob Brenly (if not only to get him out of booth).

Tuesday, July 04, 2006

Sad Day

Today is usually a happy day because it is the 4th of July, but unfortunately it is a very sad day for me and my family. I received a phone call this morning a 8 A.M. to tell me that Coffee (the dog I rescued back in 1992) was very ill and I should come by my folks house to see him. Well unfortunately I did not make it on time to see him go before he passed away. I just want to say goodbye to him and that I will miss him.

I found this dog back in 1992 while on a habitat retreat with my Senior Class in the mountains of Hazard County, Kentucky. Way up in the Appalachian Mountains. For one week while up there he become my pal as he was a stray (as I asked all the neighbors there and they confirmed it) dog and would follow me around, and when time came to leave the school wouldn’t let take him back with us. So I stole from our kitchen about 15 sausages and left them in yard of the Church where we were staying for Coffee and hopped he would be enticed to stay and as my plan was to come back and get him (people all thought I was crazy and lying). After we got back to Chicago, I had to fly to Colorado for 2 days to visit schools and while I was there I called a few of my friends, Gerard, Larry, Jeremy, Kato and Keith and when I got back all of us hopped in 2 cars and drove back to Kentucky hoping that this dog still would be waiting for us. By the time we hit the bottom of the mountain before the final stretch we all stopped at a gas station and got some gas station munchies and drinks and realized that this trip might be for nothing and the dog probably won’t be there. Well as we got back to the church, as soon as we got out of the car, much to my surprise Coffee came running right up to me, just like it was meant to be. He gladly hopped in and came back with us and happily lived a healthy life until this morning. I just want to thank my parents and both my sisters Ariane and especially Margot for the wonderful care and love they gave him.

Good-bye Coffee. I will miss you and always love you.

Sunday, July 02, 2006

Cubs Notes: Week in Transactions

Over the last week the Cubs have made a few transactions, here they are and my takes on them.
The Cubs activated Scott Williamson and brought up Geovany Soto while sending Tony Womack and David Aardsma back to AAA. Aardsma went down because the Cubs needed to activate Williamson and he was just unlucky to have options left. I think the Cubs should just cut their loses with Scott Williamson as he has not been a shadow of his former self since joining the Cubs last season and release him.
The Cubs designated Tony Womack for assignment the other day and activated Angel Pagan and also sent Geovany Soto back to AAA. This might have been a little early to bring back Pagan, but he can't be any worse than Womack or Mabry off the bench. Soto going back down was very expected as soon as Barrett came off suspension.
Also it looks like Glendon Rusch is going to be activated soon and with that I expect that Angel Guzman will go back to the minors. I also think the Cubs might benefit in bring Wuertz back up again (showing nice command in minors) and maybe sending down Novoa.

Welcome back Angel

Well today Angel Pagan has just hit his 2nd homer of the day and to top the day off, it is also his Birthday. Welcome back and Happy Birthday Angel.

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