Monthly Archives May 2009

Working the count

One of my favorite all-time Cubs was a self-made hitter–not a natural hitter–who knew that working the count meant understanding two things: pitchers and umpires. Milton Bradley may understand a pitcher’s tendencies and tactics, but he doesn’t understand what a home-plate umpire’s job is. That, more than paranoia or a short fuse, is his problem. […]

Marmols in the making?

Lou said recently he was not averse to “bringing up some young kids with good arms and seeing what they can do.” If Lou wants to make the rounds of the Cubs’ farm teams and bring back quality arms, he should send a bus. It’s early, but right now the Cubs appear to have a […]

Finding a third baseman in the system

One man’s injury is another’s opportunity. The Cubs were probably lucky to latch onto Ryan Freel just hours before Aramis went down; but Freel is something of a has-been, and ideally you would use the vacancy at third to give a farmhand some valuable exposure that is relatively low-pressure because unexpected. There are three infielders […]

Flea-market acquisitions

Here is an impressive list: prospects that the Cubs have received in trades over the last several years, as an aging Cub team turned over and as various players fell out of favor with the Cubs’ demanding (some would say impatient) manager. The list is impressive because while prospects come and go, nearly all of […]