Author Topic: Cubs in '18  (Read 68685 times)

Ron

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Re: Cubs in '18
« Reply #45 on: October 25, 2017, 07:12:28 pm »
Patrick Mooney article on Albert Almora with some interesting quotes from Epstein and Scott Borus.

First Epstein:

“The real key for Albert,” Epstein said, “and his future development and what will dictate whether he reaches his very high ceiling or not is his ability to have really good, consistent at-bats against right-handed pitching (.711 OPS this year).

“He’s proven that he destroys left-handed pitching (.898 OPS) and is a real weapon that way – and any team would love to have him certainly against left-handed pitching. He made really nice strides against right-handed pitching as the year went on. This kid worked so hard using the slider machine, just seeing slider after slider after slider in the cage.

“Training his eyes to recognize – not so much to hit it, although it helps hitting mistake breaking balls – but just really training his eyes on what lanes to expect the slider to come out of, say, with runners in scoring position or two-strike counts and really learning which one to lay off, to put himself in position to get favorable counts to get fastballs or get mistake pitches that he can drive.”


Then Boras:

“The Cubs are such a good team is the (only) reason he’s not playing every day,” Boras said. “I remember we had the conversation when he came to the big leagues. He wasn’t playing, and I said: ‘Albert, the goal here is not learning how to play every day in the big leagues. The goal is learning how to win in the big leagues. You get to learn that at a young age. Take advantage of it, because it’s going to be so valuable. You’re going to be able to share this when you are an everyday player.’”

http://www.nbcsports.com/chicago/cubs/albert-almora-jr-ready-show-cubs-he-can-do-bigger-and-better-things-epstein-boras

craig

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Re: Cubs in '18
« Reply #46 on: October 25, 2017, 07:24:49 pm »
....."There are a lot of free agent relievers coming off of strong years such as Jake McGee, Mike Minor, Brandon Morrow, Pat Neshek, Addison Reed, Bryan Shaw, Joe Smith and Anthony Swarzak."

That could give you McGee, Shaw, Strop, Swarzak, Edwards, Wilson, Montgomery for the pen.

I like your line of thinking, blue.  Brett Cecil was $30.5/4 for Cardinals, Cubs have plenty of discretionary money for a couple of guys like that.  Koji was $6.  So you'd think if they figured to commit $25-30/year on FA relievers over the next 3 years, that would chew up a chunk of their cash, but they could reshape the bullpen pretty significantly.   

Not sure the pen will become a strength, money doesn't buy success, and it may be a problem again.  And there is something to having a known, trusted, confident, shut-down guy for the 9th inning, so that not every 9th inning is an ordeal. 

But, despite the late-season failures, Edwards and Strop and pre-Cub-Wilson gave a lot of good innings during the season.  Montgomery too.  I think Theo's comments about trying to throw more strikes and being less afraid of hard contact might be good for each of those guys. 

With the weirdness of relievers, it's not inconceivable that Wilson will come back and be quite effective.  Or that Rondon might show up healthy, get locked in, and give a very good season.

Obviously very different to give enough competent innings in the regular season to get into the playoffs; without actually being a knockout shut-down guy in the playoffs.  Should be interesting to see how they spend their money relief-wise. 

CUBluejays

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Re: Cubs in '18
« Reply #47 on: October 25, 2017, 09:11:20 pm »
I guess part of the reason is I have a tough time seeing who the knock out reliever is that the Cubs can trade for.  The only guy that has been rumored to be on the market is Britton, but he has a lot of questions and I have doubts that the Orioles will actually trade him.

One guy who I sold short on is Mike Minor.  He was fantastic last year, but the 2 TJS scare me a lot.

I think you can add a lot of depth to the Cubs bullpen in this free agent class in the $30 million and under reliever range without affecting the Cubs ability to lock up the young guys or go after 2018 free agents.  I would be quite happy with 2-3 free agent relievers, Cobb and inning eating 5th starter.

Anibal Sanchez and Drew Hutchinson would be some interesting starter to reliever guys if you could get them on a minor league deal for me.

craig

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Re: Cubs in '18
« Reply #48 on: October 25, 2017, 09:22:24 pm »
....I think you can add a lot of depth to the Cubs bullpen in this free agent class in the $30 million and under reliever range without affecting the Cubs ability to lock up the young guys or go after 2018 free agents.  I would be quite happy with 2-3 free agent relievers, Cobb and inning eating 5th starter....

Not sure about the innings-eating 5th starter.  Not that interested in wasting money on a bad starter. 

But yeah, I think if they were to pay the price for a Cobb-level guy, and take a shot at it with four starters and wing it for #5, that would make sense, and seems pretty sensible. 

5th starter could be whatever.  Some take-a-shot guy, like Anderson was this year.  Or Montgomery.  Or Tseng.  Or some old junker scouting guy.  Cubs won a whole lot of games two years ago with Wada and Richard and Haren and Cahill and Dallas Beeler. 

But it's the #4 guy who needs to be competent.

And if the bullpen is deep and good, you can better cover for a wing-it #5.     

CUBluejays

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Re: Cubs in '18
« Reply #49 on: October 25, 2017, 09:37:14 pm »
Not sure about the innings-eating 5th starter.  Not that interested in wasting money on a bad starter.   

You'd basically be looking for a Lackey (2017) level starter on a 1 year deal, maybe a little better.

CurtOne

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Re: Cubs in '18
« Reply #50 on: October 25, 2017, 11:42:05 pm »
Looking at guys who could fill those 4 and 5 spots in the FA class: Alex Cobb, Jeremy Hellickson, Francisco Liriano.  I still think you go after Yu Darvish and Lance Lynn not only to better yourself but to make your closest competitors have to find replacements.

CurtOne

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Re: Cubs in '18
« Reply #51 on: October 25, 2017, 11:42:43 pm »
Also surprised to see that Jaime Garcia is only 31.  Too bad his middle initials are DL.

Ron

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Re: Cubs in '18
« Reply #52 on: October 26, 2017, 12:19:01 pm »
More coaching changes for the Cubs:

Patrick Mooney‏Verified account @MooneyNBCS  1m1 minute ago
#Cubs hire Chili Davis as hitting coach and add Brian Butterfield as new third base coach. Andy Haines promoted to assistant hitting coach.


ticohans

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Re: Cubs in '18
« Reply #53 on: October 26, 2017, 12:19:25 pm »
Cobb would make a great addition as a 4th starter.

I'd be surprised if they go after Darvish - our core is going to get really expensive sooner rather than later, and I'd be surprised if Theo wants to commit +$50M/yr to 2 starters (Lester + Darvish), unless the purse strings are much looser than it seems. I think it's much more likely they try to acquire a guy like Archer, etc.

ticohans

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Re: Cubs in '18
« Reply #54 on: October 26, 2017, 12:19:47 pm »
More coaching changes for the Cubs:

Patrick Mooney‏Verified account @MooneyNBCS  1m1 minute ago
#Cubs hire Chili Davis as hitting coach and add Brian Butterfield as new third base coach. Andy Haines promoted to assistant hitting coach.



So is Mallee out? Did I miss something?

Ron

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Re: Cubs in '18
« Reply #55 on: October 26, 2017, 12:25:21 pm »
So it appears that there will be many changes among the coaches.

Bosio out, with no replacement yet.
Mallee replaced by Davis.
Hinske left to become hitting coach with the Angels, replaced by Haines.
And apparently Gary Jones must be out as 3rd Base Coach, since Butterfield has been named to that position.

So much for Joe's statement about how much he wanted all his coaches back.

(And Dave Martinez could be gone as well)
« Last Edit: October 26, 2017, 12:29:27 pm by Ron »

craig

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Re: Cubs in '18
« Reply #56 on: October 26, 2017, 12:29:37 pm »
Wow wow wow wow. 

Playtwo

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Re: Cubs in '18
« Reply #57 on: October 26, 2017, 12:34:18 pm »
From what I have heard, Chili Davis will be a great addition.

JeffH

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Re: Cubs in '18
« Reply #58 on: October 26, 2017, 12:40:05 pm »
You have to wonder how much the player exit interviews play into these coaching changes.  If there's frequent anti-"Coach X" sentiment, that could at least partially drive decision making.

CUBluejays

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Re: Cubs in '18
« Reply #59 on: October 26, 2017, 12:47:46 pm »
« Last Edit: October 26, 2017, 12:51:16 pm by CUBluejays »