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Realistic Expectations for the Cubs’ Starting Lineup in 2014

November 30, 2013 by Jacob Kornhauser · Leave a Comment 

For a Chicago Cubs team that will be continuing their rebuild in 2014, the starting lineup presents a major question mark at several different positions. While prospects will be coming up sporadically through the minor leagues this season and next, the Opening Day lineup figures to be full of fill-in players or players looking to bounce back from last season. Based on Roto Champ's projected Opening Day lineup for the Cubs, here are some realistic expectations for the players that figure to be in the starting lineup come April. There are sure to be some disappointments and some surprises during the ...

Why the Chicago Cubs Should Reconcile with Sammy Sosa

November 27, 2013 by Jason S. Parini · Leave a Comment 

The year was 1998. Bill Clinton had just announced that the United States was experiencing their first budget surplus since 1969. "Armageddon" and "Saving Private Ryan" were topping the box office and setting records of their own. At the same time that the American economy was experiencing a new realm of success, the economy of the American pastime was on the same pace thanks to the thrilling season-long home run derby between Mark McGwire of the St. Louis Cardinals and Sammy Sosa of the Chicago Cubs. Like the economy and Bill Clinton, both baseball stars would come crashing down from their high. All ...

Chicago Cubs Land George Kottaras, Begin to Add Depth at Catcher

November 26, 2013 by Jacob Kornhauser · Leave a Comment 

It was reported earlier by Jon Heyman of CBS Sports that the Cubs have agreed to send cash to the Royals in return for catcher George Kottaras. The 30-year-old will reportedly battle for the backup catcher job in spring training, according to MLB Trade Rumors.  While it's an under-the-radar trade, landing Kottaras does have upside for the Cubs. First of all, Kottaras is a lefty, so he can be used situationally by manager Rick Renteria if need be. Other than that, he can obviously give starter Welington Castillo a day's rest every now and then.  Something that people will instantly jump to ...

Meet the Cubs’ Revamped Coaching Staff

November 25, 2013 by Jacob Kornhauser · Leave a Comment 

As is often the case after two seasons of over 90 losses, a major league baseball team "decides to go in a different direction" with regards to their coaching staff. Such is the case with the Cubs, who after firing manager Dale Sveum were tasked with finding a new manager and new people to fill much of his staff.  While a couple of coaches were retained from the previous coaching regime, the coaching staff as a whole is relatively new and getting to know who these men are can help shed light on how they will shape the Cubs' plethora of ...

Letting Darwin Barney Go Is Best Option for Cubs Moving Forward

November 24, 2013 by Jacob Kornhauser · Leave a Comment 

With so many infield prospects coming up through the minor leagues in the coming years, the Cubs are going to have a pile-up at the major league level eventually. To lessen the severity of that situation, and attempt to get more offensive production out of the second base position, it's necessary the team non-tenders current second baseman Darwin Barney, which would make him a free agent.  This potential move first gained steam when Cubs' beat writer Carrie Muskat suggested that it was a possibility, in response to fan mail on cubs.com. Based on Barney's lack of offensive production, especially in 2013, ...

The 5 Best Available Free Agents for the Cubs

November 23, 2013 by Jacob Kornhauser · Leave a Comment 

In the mid-to-late stages of their rebuilding process, the Cubs are in for an interesting offseason. They're in no position to make a major splash as the front office has noted, but some subtle moves could keep the wheels of progress moving in the right direction.  With areas of need aplenty on the major league squad, there are plenty of under-the-radar moves that could help the team for both 2014 and beyond. Based on positional need, past performance and organizational fit, these are the five free agents best suited to fit into the Cubs' plans in 2014 and possibly past that ...

Javier Baez, Jorge Soler Among Cubs’ Top Prospects Looking to Get ‘The Call’

November 21, 2013 by Jacob Kornhauser · Leave a Comment 

Strangely, it has seemed in the past couple seasons that the Cubs' minor league system was of larger concern than their major league squad. For a team in the midst of a rebuild, fans have to find solace in something, and for Cubs fans there is plenty of solace to be found in their young budding stars.  While fans grow restless watching the major league club, they won't be able to help but wonder when things will be different. When that will be all depends on how their prospects progress, and many players in the Cubs' farm system are at different ...

Playing Fact or Fiction with the Latest Cubs Rumors

November 20, 2013 by Jason S. Parini · Leave a Comment 

The 2013 offseason has been reasonably quiet on the north side of Chicago thus far, not surprising to many fans. The Cubs have already gone on record to say that they will make minimal use of free agency this year, instead opting to put their trust in the young farm system waiting at the helm. Rumors have inevitably begun to circulate, most notably surrounding the fate of starting pitcher Jeff Samardzija. The Cubs have expressed interest in re-signing him, but rumors have also flown of discussions between the Cubs and Diamondbacks regarding a possible trade. Here we play fact or fiction with ...

Chicago Cubs Offseason: Could Jeff Samardzija Really Be Traded?

November 20, 2013 by Jacob Kornhauser · Leave a Comment 

Mostly due to the fact that the club figures to be quiet on the free agent market this offseason, a franchise-defining question facing the Cubs this winter is whether or not to trade pitcher Jeff Samardzija.  Both internally and externally, there are a lot of differing stories and opinions on the subject. The Chicago Sun-Times, for example, reports that nearly half of major league general managers expect the team to trade Samardzija this offseason. However, Samardzija has said publicly that he wants to play and win in Chicago, something that might not be possible in the remaining two years of the pitcher's ...

Chicago Cubs Arizona Fall League MVP Kris Bryant Already Showing Promise

November 17, 2013 by Jacob Kornhauser · Leave a Comment 

On Saturday, 6'5", 215-pound Chicago Cubs prospect Kris Bryant was named the Arizona Fall League MVP. Bryant batted .346 with six home runs, eight doubles and 17 RBI in just 21 games of action. For the 21-year-old prospect, it's yet another confirmation of his rising star on the way to the major leagues.  Bryant grew up in Las Vegas and attended Bonanza High School, where he was named a USA Today first-team All-American in his senior season. Following his senior campaign, Bryant was drafted by the Toronto Blue Jays in the 18th round of the 2010 MLB draft. After declining to sign ...

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