Orval Overall

  • joined Mar 18, 2008
  • last login Aug 29, 2014
  • posts 23
  • comments 4224
User Blog

The antithesis of the "towel drill"


Interesting article in Sports Illustrated about the potential value/risks of "long toss", with one of its chief backers a guy that many of us wanted to see on the Cubs bench this year.

Marlins' Cespedes Offer 6 years, under $40M (MLBTR Link)


Linking to MLBTR because the original link (http://networkedblogs.com/tOzVv) is to a spanish language site. Per MLBTR's translation, the offer is in the vicinity (and likely a little below) $40M over 6 years, so less than $7M per season. It seems to me that creates the opportunity for the Cubs to come in on a shorter deal at higher value per season - i.e., not the 6x60 deal people were worried about, but maybe 4 years and $8 - $9M per season. The overall value will compare favorably with the Marlins offer, but give Cespedes the promise of a new free agent deal sooner than he'd get from Miami. If he plays well, the deal they offered would quickly look very unfair to the player, and he wouldn't hit the market again until 32.


Ohyespleasepleasepleaseletthisbetrue: 5-Star Transfer Considering NU?

Fresh off the Odenigbo signing, word is now out that former Proviso East star Kyle Prater is choosing between NU and Wisconsin as schools to transfer to from USC. The fact that he's leaving USC...


Defending Angelo

I know it’s fashionable to dump on Angelo, and he certainly deserves to shoulder the blame for the chronic failure to build up a competent offensive line despite having tons of cap room this...

Trib: Francona "badly wants to manage the Cubs"


Per Dave van Dyck of the Trib, sources close to Francona say: "'Deep down' he badly wants to manage the Cubs." I guess that settles the question of desire. The fact that Francona gave DvD an interview seems to corroborate that his interest is genuine. Ball's in your court, Theo.

No surprise here: Multiple NPB Teams Have Interest in LaHair


I suppose that if the worst case for LaHair is that he can hit like Micah Hoffpauir, it shouldn't surprise anyone that he'd get offers from Japanese teams. Maybe call it the Matt Murton effect. After the last two years, there's no question LaHair could make a pretty good living playing ball in Japan. In the short run, he'll probably be a lot less well off financially if he gets the opportunity to stay on the Cubs' 40 man roster through next season. Glad to see that he's determined to make that happen regardless.

Archer Update


A quick search suggested there haven't been any stories/posts/shots about how Chris Archer is doing since shortly after the season began. I thought an update might be in order, particularly in light of all the Hendry controversy. While you might say that 15 AA starts and 77 innings is his hardly enough time to measure his ongoing value, its already two more starts and 7 more innings than he had at AA last year in which to acquire the reputation of a stud prospect. So far this year? Not so great for Archer. 15 starts have yielded a 3-3 record, an ERA of 4.98 and a WHIP of 1.648. It would be way too early to say he's a bust, but people who long ago condemned this trade should at least own up to the possibility that Hendry shrewdly traded him when his value was at its highest. At the very least, if he'd remained in our system with these numbers this year, he'd be a lot less valuable as a trade chip than he was this past offseason.

Revisiting the Josh Hamilton Trade: A Thorough Analysis


Actually, just kidding about the thorough analysis part. But when I saw the above-linked article, the first thought I had was to wonder what all the Hendry Haters would say in response to the possibility that the best Cub ever traded (editor's note: never actually a Cub) wouldn't have been able to hit at Wrigley.


BA's 2007 Prospect Rankings, Or Why I'm Skeptical of Most Criticisms of the Garza Deal

I keep reading that the Cubs-Rays trade had two top prospects (Archer and Lee) plus some middling guys.  Well, if you step back to just the very recent past, then it had three top prospects.  Who's...

OT: 6 yrs, $96 million for Beltre? Seriously?


The guy has had only two good years in his career. Can it possibly be a coincidence that both were contract years? To earn his big deal with the M's he went .334/.388/.629 w/ 48 HRs and 121 RBI. Immediately after the big contract? .255/.303/.413 w/ 19 HRs and 87 RBI. Similar years followed before this year when, angling for a new contract, he hit .321/.365/.553 w/ 28 HRs and 102 RBI. Those two seasons, both contract years, are the ONLY two seasons in his career that he has eclipsed .290 in BA, eclipsed .360 in OBP, eclipsed .500 in SLG and eclipsed 100 RBI. Every other year he was well below those numbers; in those two years he was way above them. Again, is it even possible that's a coincidence? But I'm sure that $16 mm per year will look great when he's 38.

Phil Rogers is Out of His Mind


Either that, or he's on team Jeter's payroll. In this article he purports to describe all the possible landing spots for Jeter "if the Yankees" truly don't want him. (Nowhere in this fiction does he acknowledge that the Yankess are offering $15M/year, and that the team trying to fit Jeter in would by definition have to exceed that). While there is a lot to be amused at, including the suggestion that it would only take "some" of the Giants' postseaon revenues to sign Jeter, for my money, the most amusing quote is when he says "unfortunately for the Cubs" their existing commitment to Soriano makes it unlikely they could afford to sign Jeter, move him to third, and either trade A-Ram or move him to first. Yeah, Phil, how unfortunate we can't afford to do that.


"Postseason.TV" Complaint/Help Thread

Is anyone else using the online broadcast being sold as "Postseason.tv"?  I paid the $10 knowing it would really only be useful during the weekday LDS games, but was immediately disappointed to see...


Show of Hands Time: Bluto and I Aren't Giving Up Yet; who else?

  I'm as frustrated as anyone with how this team has played, and at the circus its become off the field.  But more so, I'm sick and tired of reading the daily post mortems while the body is still...

Boswell on Cubs: Misery Springs Eternal


This is a brutal, but honest, take on the Cubs problems by one of the premiere baseball writers. You may need to register for a free account to read the whole thing. To be clear, I'm not endorsing his views, particularly not the way he ends it. But it is a far better written account than most of what ails this team.

A polite round of applause for Milton Bradley's recent play


Its no secret that the often-criticized Milton Bradley has been playing better of late. How much better surprised me when I looked the numbers up. In the last 7 days his BA/OBP/SLG/OPS are a ridiculous .615/.688/.769/1.457. That was fairly surprising, but even more surprising was the numbers he's put up for the past month: .344/.474/.475/.950. Yes, yes, I know the responses: small sample size and all that; for the whole year he's still mediocre at best; and is it really worth all the headaches, etc.? Even so, considering how much grief was showered on him for the early returns that were the polar opposite of this, I thought it worthwhile to acknowledge his recent turnaround.

More Out of Control Umpires


I know there was a post/article/fanshot on this a few days ago, but I can't find it. In any case, follow the link for the latest from Mike Winters, the umpire who spurred Bradley's meltdown a couple years ago in San Diego. I guess its not all that shocking an ump would ever use foul language if appropriately provoked. But this seems to be his immediate reaction to Kemp's protest. These guys are out of control, someone on the umpire side needs to get suspended as a message. Winters seems to be an obvious first choice.

"I didn't come here to suck. I know I've sucked so far, but give me some love, you know what I'm...


"I didn't come here to suck. I know I've sucked so far, but give me some love, you know what I'm saying? I am a Cub."

TSN Grades Bears Draft an A


Premature? Sure. But at least one early review is raving.


"Soto might become a decent backup, that's all." -- Al, 5/1/2007

Yes, this is another Micah Hoffpauir fanpost.  I have no idea what the future holds for the Hoff, but I do know this:  people who say he can't or won't be an effective major league hitter based on...


Reasons for the Missing "Buzz"

A common theme for the TBS announcers last night was that the crowd was shockingly quiet and passive, and it certainly looked that way on TV. Al said the same thing in his wrap-up. And I saw the...


Cuban Embargoed?

"Sources" tell some other blog that Mark Cuban is out of the running for the Cubs, and that the clubhouse leader is Tom Ricketts. http://chi-ball.com/blog/2008/09/12/cuban-out/ This in turn was...


Zell, the political solution

I'm surprised that for all the attention paid to Zell's comments about selling naming rights, there is very little discussion of the political leverage Cubs fans throughout Chicago and Illinois...

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