Category Archives: lou pinella

If Cubs Trade Bradley, Could Zambrano Go?

Milton Bradley was suspended for the rest of the season by the Chicago Cubs and he still has two years left on his contract and more then $20 million owed to him. It will be hard to get a team to take his contract and/or eat all of that money. Sure, the Cubs could probably trade him, pay most of it, and get little in return, but they need to formulate a plan to get the most in return. How can they do that? Well, Carlos Zambrano could be packaged with him, but would this work?

Carlos Zambrano and Milton Bradley are both vocal and emotional players. Sometimes that emotion can get the best of them, so they are risky players to obtain through a trade. They are both owed a lot of money and signed for multiple years. What teams would be interested in them and who could afford their contracts? Lastly, if a team meets both of those requirements, what players would the Cubs receive?

I scanned through the teams and it seems like the New York Mets would be the best fit. offered a scenario earlier this week that maybe an Oliver Perez for Milton Bradley trade could work out for both teams. Perez had a pretty nice 2nd half in 2008, but looked horrible in 2009. The Mets need an outfielder and maybe Perez just needs his mechanics re-worked. I don’t know if a trade like that, even though it would work just in money terms, but if you add Zambrano, maybe the Mets may let go of a player like Jose Reyes or Luis Castillo. Reyes is a great fantasy player, but they were hoping that he would develop into a superstar, which he has not. He has been out nearly 75% of the season this year and his injury affects his speed, his value to the team would drop. Luis Castillo is a nice 2nd baseman, he’s getting a little older and the Mets could be looking to get rid of him. Zambrano would help them secure a top-tier pitcher for their pitcher-friendly new stadium.

With the ownership finally looking like it could be finalized this off-season, the Cubs may try and get some new blood in the organization. It has yet to be seen if Tom Ricketts will be a free-spending owner, since it has been rumored that most of his net-worth is tied up and may not be the “Mark Cuban-esque” owner that most Cubs fans want.

This upcoming season may be the last season for Lou Pinella as the manager of the team and if you eliminate Zambrano and Bradley from the team, it could be a good move. Pinella hasn’t seemed as fired up as he was the first couple years with the team. I don’t know if that is a great thing for the team, but the remarks and comments by Big Z and Bradley has distracted the team and put the spotlight on them in a negative light. If the Cubs can move both players in one move and get 40 cent on the dollar, I would do it. Zambrano is a good pitcher, but he is so inconsistent and emotional that you never know what you’re going to get. For the long-term success of the team, as a Cubs fan, I would support this move.

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Griffey Jr. To The Cubs?

Ken Giffey Jr. has been a superstar since he was old enough to put on a uniform. He has done just about everything you can do in baseball, but the most important thing, win a championship. Griffey is currently a free agent and he doesn’t have many more years left to accomplish this goal. His trade to the Chicago White Sox late last season is an indication that he wants to play for a contender. The Chicago Cubs need a left-handed power bat, could Griffey Jr. be reunited with his old skipper in Seattle?

The Chicago Cubs haven’t made it a secret that they are in the market for a left-handed power bat to solidfy their line-up. The rumors suggest that Milton Bradley will be their guy, but Griffey would be a great addition to the Cubs. The outfield for the Cubs will be a rotation of Alfonso Soriano, Joey Gathright/Felix Pie, Kosuke Fukudome, Reed Johnson, and possibly, Bradley. Trade rumors have been circulating around Felix Pie the last two seasons and early returns say that they have lost interest in developing the prospect. By signing Joey Gathright to a contract, the Cubs sealed Pie’s fate. Chicago needs to add more defense to their squad and Soriano and Gathright aren’t great in that department. Fukudome has a cannon arm, but he batted below the Mendoza line doing down the stretch.

Ken Griffey Jr. is a cheap option for a secondary left-handed bat in the lineup. He can fill the role that Jim Edmonds played for them last season. He can spell the outfield and can give you an extra lefty to face a tough pitcher. He would also be a great pinch-hitting option off the bench. He can use him in situations where they could say Gathright for pinch-runner duties, something that they saved Ronny Ceceno for last season. He would give the younger players a role model in the clubhouse and he could possibly be signed for around $2-3 million.

Jim Hendry, the Cubs GM, has made some nice trades and signings over the past few seasons, but I think signing Ken Grffey Jr. would be a step in the right direction. Not only would Griffey be comfortable playing for Pinella, but he had some of his best seasons under him in Seattle. I understand that he was in his prime during that period of time, but he doesn’t have to play everyday and Pinella is smart enough to use him to best suit his skills.

The Chicago Cubs need to win the World Series this year and they need to add players that are hungry. Ken Griffey has played nearly 20 seasons and he is starving. Wrigley Field would be the best place for Junior, I know he has hit enough homers there against them in the past.

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Big Z, That Was A Close Call

The Chicago Cubs should be popping champagne bottles in celebration that Carlos Zambrano won’t need season-ending surgery for his shoulder. He was diagnosed with tendinitis and inflammation in his shoulder, which is much better than what the Chicago Tribune and Chicago Sun-Times was hinting at the last few days. The Cubs will only go as far as Zambrano can make it.

Rich Harden is having some issues and will have a start pushed back, Dempster hasn’t thrown this many innings since he was on the Florida Marlins, Lilly kind of imploded at the end of the season last year, and I will never trust Jason Marquis. The replacement starters for the Cubs would either be Sean Marshall or long-reliever, Jon Lieber. Marshall seems to pitch one good game and followed it by two awful outings. I don’t think Lieber would be a sufficient addition either, he has been hurt for most of the season. Angel Guzman could possibly start a game, but he has been hurt for nearly the entire season and has yet to win a start in his limited history as a starter.

I think that Zambrano and Harden should make it to the post-season, but their ability to go on 3-days rest on a few occasions isn’t an ideal situation. Zambrano hasn’t been good on 3-days rest and would fear Harden would be over-worked. My theory would work and think it would be best. I know Kerry Wood has been a great closer, but he has post-season experience and seems to be pitching really well. If they were to convert Wood back to a starter for the rest of the season, they would have to start building up his arm strength right now. I know Jeff Samardzjia was a starter in the minors this season, but his ERA wasn’t great and doesn’t have the ability yet to get guys out the 2nd or 3rd time through the lineup.

If Zambrano or Harden can’t make it through their next start, you have to think that starting Kerry Wood would at least make it through Pinella or GM Hendry’s thought process. He is a free agent after this season, so Wood may not want to risk injury, but it may be the Cubs’ best option to winning their first World Series since 1908.

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