Cubs Rumors: Theriot, Trades, Piniella

Jim Hendry's peers recently told ESPN that the Cubs GM is an easy person to make trades with. If the 36-47 Cubs decide to sell, Hendry's phone could be ringing non-stop, but the Cubs aren't there quite yet. Here's the latest on the North Siders:

  • A few weeks ago Andrew Baggarly of the San Jose Mercury News heard that the Giants could have interest in Ryan Theriot, but the Giants now say Theriot's name hasn't come up in trade talks.
  • Hendry may not have committed to selling, but manager Lou Piniella thinks the Cubs will get younger this month. ''We probably will be sellers,'' Piniella told the Chicago Sun-Times.
  • Piniella told Paul Sullivan of the Chicago Tribune that he will finish managing this season, but won't take another managerial job afterwards. "I know that this will be my last managing job," Piniella said. "I do know that for a fact."


52 Responses to Cubs Rumors: Theriot, Trades, Piniella Leave a Reply

  1. So Jim Hendry has not given up on this season, but Lou has? I think the Ricketts need to do a little house cleaning now or after this season. If the teams direction is truly to get younger than why not Maddux as GM and Sandberg as Manager? Keep the scouts and minor league directors in place since that aspect of the Cubs seems to be getting stronger.

    • Maddux will not be the GM of this team or likely any team, ever. Besides the fact that he’s obviously a smart guy there’s no reason to believe he would be a good GM or could handle the administrative duties. Besides, guys who’ve earned more than $150 million in their careers don’t often go looking for high stress, demanding jobs that will dominate their life and time. I believe Maddux is quite happy being an assistant.There really isn’t any reason to believe that Sandberg would be a good manager either. iirc he’s an “old school” type manager, not something that a young, rebuilding team really needs. Just because he’s a Cub legend doesn’t necessarily translate into automatic success with the franchise. Ask Alan Trammel how that turned out for him. I’d much rather the team go in a different direction when Lou leaves, someone younger and more statistically oriented. I love Sandberg but hiring him to manage a young, rebuilding team would seem to be putting him in a position to fail. Let him manage longer in the minors or perhaps somewhere else in the majors before you hire him to manage in one of the toughest environments for managers in the major leagues.

      • No reason to believe Sandberg would succeed with the Cubs’ young players?

        How about the multiple league championships he’s won with these same players in the minors?

        • That has little to nothing to do with managing those same players in the majors. Minor league managers are under a different set of circumstances than major league managers. They’d also be playing against different competition. Minor league managers take much more direction from the organization about who to play, how long to play them, development direction etc etc… Again, I’m a big Sandberg fan but I don’t see any evidence that he’d be a good manager yet. The Cubs don’t need a marketing ploy at this point, they need someone who can guide the team effectively in the near future given it’s current predicament.

          • I think you’re talking out of both sides of your mouth there. If you want to say you’d need Sandberg to have major league managerial experience before you would personally be convinced, fair enough. To say there is “no evidence” he would succeed with the Cubs’ young players when he is, in fact, the same manager said players have won multiple league championships with in the minors, is contradictory and goofy.

            This is Sandberg’s fourth highly successful year as a minor league manager. He’s not some fan fave being touted for the job out of sentimentality. He’s a guy who’s been riding buses and eating hot dogs for four years earning his shot.

          • I totally agree. Every manager that has ever managed was at one time a first year manager. Because it is the Cubs they shouldn’t give him a shot? If they are getting younger than let the coach be the guy that has been coaching them for 4 years! Give Sandberg a shot, I bet he will surprise us in a good way! Who saw him doing what he did as a second baseman for us before he did it? Maybe they can keep Trammel as the bench coach and they can both gain the experience and help each other!

  2. Chiburgh 5 years ago

    The Cubs plethora of middle infield players isn’t even good enough to draw interest from teams who need help due to injury. Ricketts needs to do something soon.

    • BlueCatuli 5 years ago

      Theriot and Fontenot have drawn interest. Their talent is an entirely different topic of discussion, but they have drawn interest.

  3. Jim gave up, he’s just being cagey about it.

  4. scottandwtb 5 years ago

    Time for another bad contract swap! Zambrano for Oliver Perez?

    • petrie000 5 years ago

      yes, trade a headcase with a no-hitter to his name for a headcase who can’t throw strikes… a deal only a Mets fan could love…

      you want Castro and Colvin in the mix as well?

      • ubercubsfan 5 years ago

        Wasn’t there something similar said about a certain pitcher that is probably the Cubs best pitcher this year with a 9-2 year under 3 ERA?

        • petrie000 5 years ago

          Wasn’t there also, like, no trade market for Milton Bradley?

          Zambrano’s a good pitcher when he’s not pissed at the world, so somebody’ll actually offer something useful for him if the Cubs don’t panic. If the cubs are willing to swallow some salary, somebody’ll actually offer GOOD players in return.

          Or they can take three years worth of the worst starter in baseball for what, 35 million?

          Hendry’s not that stupid.

          • aaron b 5 years ago

            I’m not so sure he isn’t that stupid…..

          • Smileybush 5 years ago

            Well I do know there wasn’t much of a market for Bradley when Tommy Boy signed him. No one was offering this headcase more than 2 years and $15M. But Tommy Boy went ahead and gave him 3 years and $30M. Just because Tommy Boy got lucky as hell that (a) Seattle was stupid enough to take Bradley off his hands and (b) Silva actually was able to contribute to the Cubs – doesn’t take away the fact that he made a HUGE mistake in signing Bradley in the first place. (and I am not even bringing up the Soriano contract . . .)

            So I think he is that stupid. He has handcuffed the organization financially with the highest payroll in the NL – and his team blows, and doesn’t have much of a future.

          • petrie000 5 years ago

            thank you for another very insightful comment there, SmileyBush

          • aaron b 5 years ago

            Thats been Hendry’s MO since he got here.

            Overpay everyone by 15-35% and assume everything works out.

          • petrie000 5 years ago

            and it won the Cubs 90+ games twice, right? Yeah, i know they didn’t get it done in the playoffs, but how many times in the 20 years before Hendry got there did the cubs win 90 games? And despite the clubs big league struggles, the farm system is stronger than it’s been in decades.I suppose you could just label him an idiot because he hasn’t won a WS, but then most other GMs haven’t either, so it’s not really a good benchmark.You could also give a 1st year owner a derogatory nickname and assume you know what he’ll do based on absolutely nothing. OR you can assume that since he’s a billionaire he’s probably at least of average intelligence.You might not like Hendry, you might disagree with his philosophy, but the hard numbers don’t justify the gloom and doom. He’s proven himself a capable trader who never gets fleeced, and while his FA signings might not be stellar, has proven to have a good understanding of the value of a farm system.You can look at the numbers, or you can go with your amateur readings and gut feelings about a team you may really not like anyways. the Numbers clearly show Hendry’s at least a capable GM.

          • aaron b 5 years ago

            In regards to Hendry:

            He’s been there since 2002 and its largely been a .500 outfit. Not even accounting for the fact that he routinely gets to outspend the rest of the division by 35-90 million dollars annually.If Hendry was the GM of a small or even medium market team. He would have been canned in 2005 or 2006 at worst.

          • ubercubsfan 5 years ago

            I thought the Cubs didn’t give Hendry the key to the bank till the 2007 season when Tribune was trying to sell. I found some interesting Opening Day payrolls. So this 35-90 million over everyone didn’t really start till about 2008 and on. I’d love to find some information about the Astro’s payroll, but I assume it may be right there with the Cardinals.
            Cubs Cardinals
            2010: $144,359,000 2010: $94,220,500
            2009: $134,809,000 2009: $88,528,409
            2008: $118,345,833 2008: $99,624,449
            2007: $ 99,670,332 2007: $ 90,286,823
            2006: $ 94,424,499 2006: $ 88,891,371
            2005: $ 87,032,933 2005: $ 92,106,833
            2004: $ 90,560,000 2004: $ 83,228,333
            2003: $ 79,868,333 2003: $ 83,786,666
            2002: $ 75,690,833 2002: $ 74,660,875
            2001: $ 64,715,833 2001: $ 78,538,333
            2000: $ 62,100,000 2000: $ 63,900,000

          • aaron b 5 years ago

            Andy McFail fell on the sword for the 2006 debacle. Just as Hendry, Lou and probably Crane Kenny will do for the 2010 debacle.

            What Hendry has shown the ability to do is bring in talent via trade. But really only if the trade is a Salary dump from team X to the Cubs. (DLee, Aramis, Grudz/Karros, Nomar). Problem is that he has backed the Cubs up to the highest reaches of payroll and can’t make these trades anymore.

            It’s time for the Cubs to get with modern baseball.

            Ricketts needs to put his stamp on the franchise by bringing in his own baseball guys. Someone that will listen to scouts, listen to the sabr guys, build a farm system, and not deride any newfangled nerd data the way the old school cast does now in Wrigley-ville.

            Spending 140 million should make you a perennial winner in the NL Central. A competent front office should ensure that.

          • ubercubsfan 5 years ago

            Don’t get me wrong, I don’t believe Hendry should stay. I just don’t think all blame should be on him when Tribune told him to make them contenders at any cost. I would even believe they told him that he must sign big name players(which usually means big money contracts) to make the team more attractive to be sold. For the most part it worked up till the start of 2009. Now the team is just falling apart around him and he has to go just to be a fresh start for the Cubs under Rickets.

          • ubercubsfan 5 years ago

            Don’t get me wrong, I don’t believe Hendry should stay. I just don’t think all blame should be on him when Tribune told him to make them contenders at any cost. I would even believe they told him that he must sign big name players(which usually means big money contracts) to make the team more attractive to be sold. For the most part it worked up till the start of 2009. Now the team is just falling apart around him and he has to go just to be a fresh start for the Cubs under Rickets.

          • aaron b 5 years ago

            Andy McFail fell on the sword for the 2006 debacle. Just as Hendry, Lou and probably Crane Kenny will do for the 2010 debacle.

            What Hendry has shown the ability to do is bring in talent via trade. But really only if the trade is a Salary dump from team X to the Cubs. (DLee, Aramis, Grudz/Karros, Nomar). Problem is that he has backed the Cubs up to the highest reaches of payroll and can’t make these trades anymore.

            It’s time for the Cubs to get with modern baseball.

            Ricketts needs to put his stamp on the franchise by bringing in his own baseball guys. Someone that will listen to scouts, listen to the sabr guys, build a farm system, and not deride any newfangled nerd data the way the old school cast does now in Wrigley-ville.

            Spending 140 million should make you a perennial winner in the NL Central. A competent front office should ensure that.

          • aaron b 5 years ago

            And as far as Ricketts goes. I have nothing but the best hope that he becomes a good owner.

            The Trib always seemed to worry about the carnival aspect of Wrigley and the appearance of competitive ball clubs.

            Hopefully Ricketts realizes this needs to be rebuilt and does the proper thing with this roster going forward.

            At least that is my hope.

  5. With all of the injuries that have been happening to MI all over both leagues I actually think the cubs may have some pieces teams want.. Baker can play 2nd,3rd and SS while Fontenot can play 2nd and 3rd and also played some SS in college..Theriot obviously plays both SS and 2nd fairly well so I could see any of them going, perhaps tagged up with Lilly for some good prospects, or a near majors ready pitcher..Lilly is a Type A so trade him while he is worth something

  6. CosaOne 5 years ago

    What would it take to acquire Fontenot or Theriot? What type of player are the Cubs in need of?

    • Smileybush 5 years ago

      What type of player are the Cubs in need of? A guy who can steal bases. Or a guy who knows how to run bases so as not to get doubled off 2nd base on a routine fly ball. How about a guy who has some plate discipline. How about a guy who can hit for average. How about a guy who knows situational hitting. How about a guy who is not signed to a ridiculously overpriced, too long contract with a no trade clause. How about a guy who is not on the downside of his career. How about a guy who can actually catch the ball. How about a starting pitcher who does not need 90 pitches to get through 5 innings. How about relief pitcher who can consistently throw strikes?

      Just off the top of my head.

      • CosaOne 5 years ago

        Im not a National league fan so I dont know the Cubs system well. I meant what type of player are they in need of that they could realistically get for someone of Fontenots or Theriots talent level. Basically what I get from your post is that they will take anything like a future 4th outfielder or a pitcher who possibly could be a 5th starter or more likely a middle relief guy.

        Edited because i acted like a jerk

        • Smileybush 5 years ago

          Chill dude. My response was not an attempt to criticize your question. It was an attempt to point out the many, many needs of the piss poor organization called the Cubs. They don’t need anything “special”. They just need are guys who understand the basics of the game. This has been the case ever since Tommy Boy has been running the team – yet he never gets it.

          • CosaOne 5 years ago

            I apologize, I definitely read your post the wrong way. Ill edit my previous response

          • Smileybush 5 years ago

            no worries . . .

      • Jiujitsu411420 5 years ago

        Right! Maybe like Carl Crawford! We need to free up a roster spot for him and pursue him hard after he hits f/a

    • petrie000 5 years ago

      prospect wise they need power hitters and corner infielders. neither would likely take top flight prospect, just somebody young with some potential.

      • CosaOne 5 years ago

        Id imagine either of these guys would be a provide the most value as utility player on a contending club unless its the Giants who pretty much need bats everywhere. No ones giving up a power hitting outfielder like you said so maybe a lottery ticket young guy might be the move but I was thinking more a middle relief option and some salary relief

        • petrie000 5 years ago

          I know, I’m under no delusions about their value. Fontenot’s a bench player pure and simple. Theriot actually has pretty good numbers over the last 2 years and plays decent defense at both short and second, so probably has more value. But yeah, neither are the kinda’ guys that’ll turn a season around.

          either way you’re not getting big leaguers in return, so my comments above apply to mid-level prospects at the best.

    • The cubs seriously need some speed, maybe a lighter hitting infielder than the ones mentioned, but with more speed..Up and down the system the cubs weakest trait is speed and base running abilities, we just don’t have it in numbers..We really don’t need OF help unless we trade off Fuku or Nady, we have plenty of talents in the minors to fill in, like Fuld, who i think should have made the team..All teams need Middle Relievers as well so that wouldn’t hurt

    • How about someone like Kila Ka’aihue? The Royals don’t seem to think much of him and he’d be a nice, low-cost replacement for D-Lee next year.

  7. IF the team trades Lee, Lilly and theriot they arent getting much worse anyway.. Put colvin at first (his “main” position) play baker or fontenot at second. As for SP they would have to go with marshall, cashner, big temper-tantrum, or a minor leaguer (diamond?, jay jackson?)

  8. Smileybush 5 years ago

    Tommy Boy is not going to start selling until it is too late. The Cubs have always been about entertainment, and if they appear to “give up” on the season, so will the fans. Cubs have always been more interested in fans in the stands than wins on the field. Attendance is already down from the last couple of seasons. If they do sell, it won’t be until the last minute, and my guess is the market will not be as good for whatever mediocre talent Tommy Boy is peddling (Theriot, Lee, Nady).

    • aaron b 5 years ago

      That is my fear as well. Hendry will either A) ask too much for the garbage we’re selling, or B) Wait until its too late and all the better prospects are gone.

      My hope is

      1) A Lilly + Theriot for Yonder Alonso to fill the 1st base void

      2) Lee, Nady, Fontenot for anything in the low minors they can fetch

      3) Hendry to use the lucky hand he was dealt to get rid of Carlos Silva now. Before the smoke and mirrors act is exposed.

      4) Repeat of 3 with John Grabow instead

      Since it’s Hendry I expect him to stand pat and aim for 75 victories.

      • Pretty sure the Reds said they would let Edinson Volquez make his comeback, rather than trade for a starter. They might could want Theriot, if they didn’t like Janish, but I thought they did. Reds fans?

      • BlueCatuli 5 years ago

        I think #2 would net more than “anything in the low minors they can fetch”. It’s not a blockbuster by any means, but those three combined are worth more than that.

      • BlueCatuli 5 years ago

        I think #2 would net more than “anything in the low minors they can fetch”. It’s not a blockbuster by any means, but those three combined are worth more than that.

      • BlueCatuli 5 years ago

        #1 is one of the better ideas I have heard in a while. Don’t know if Cincinnati would go for it, but getting Yonder Alonso would be a big plus on Hendry’s resume. No way he is going to be playing in the bigs any time soon with Votto there. I think it all depends on what the Mariners do with Lee, and if Volquez makes a nice comeback. Joketty likes to play the waiver wire and find good deals, though. Minnesota has Ramos who is in the same situation as Alonso. If Lee goes to the Twins it wouldn’t be far fetched to see Cincinnati go after Ted Lilly. Alonso would definitely be a nice piece and it would keep Colvin in the outfield.

      • BlueCatuli 5 years ago

        #1 is one of the better ideas I have heard in a while. Don’t know if Cincinnati would go for it, but getting Yonder Alonso would be a big plus on Hendry’s resume. No way he is going to be playing in the bigs any time soon with Votto there. I think it all depends on what the Mariners do with Lee, and if Volquez makes a nice comeback. Joketty likes to play the waiver wire and find good deals, though. Minnesota has Ramos who is in the same situation as Alonso. If Lee goes to the Twins it wouldn’t be far fetched to see Cincinnati go after Ted Lilly. Alonso would definitely be a nice piece and it would keep Colvin in the outfield.

  9. Kitfisto007 5 years ago

    The Red Sox might give you someone like michael bowden for theriot?

  10. I hope winning two straight doesn’t make the club think they’re contenders. As much as I like it when they’re trying to win they probably need to go ahead and jump into the selling market while other teams are still making up their mind. DLee won’t fetch much given the year he’s having but salary relief and B prospects would be better than paying him in a lost cause. Lilly and Fukudome should go as well, Lilly for something good and Fukudome for salary relief and low level prospect(s) with a hint of upside (eg. DeRosa trade). Silva should go if you can get something descent and get salary relief. Theriot should go on principal, if someone is willing to take him and give you something in return that’s a win. ARam should be shopped assuming he’s heating up and the Cubs don’t have to pay salary to move him and you get something good in return. Zambrano shouldn’t be moved for salary relief alone, he’s still to valuable a pitcher as proved by other teams fans being so willing to take on the head case in return for their own head case. Grabow and Howry should be moved for nearly any breathing prospect. Fontenot is an acceptable role player, part-time infielder. He’s useful if used properly, that should be kept in mind when trading him. You won’t get anything great for him but he shouldn’t be given away.

  11. The Cubs shouldn’t be dealing for relief pitchers. They’ve got plenty of arms, most of them young, and a few of them are going to work out fine. The bullpen is the easiest thing to fix either on the trade market or through free agency. When/if they’re ready to compete again they should address relief problems then, not at the beginning of a rebuilding process.

    • petrie000 5 years ago

      agreed. relievers are rarely great year to year, and can be gotten fairly cheap on the FA market in the offseason. you’re better served using minor leaguers in that role to give them a taste of big league hitters and see if they can handle it mentally.

  12. studio179 5 years ago

    I agree with others on this thread that the last thing you want is the Cubs to get hot and pop off a winning streak or a nice little run right now. That would be all the ammo Hendry would need in thinking the team has a chance. It’s bad enough you know the Cubs always do whatever they can to not pull the plug on a season. I don’t want management to get any bright ideas they can make a run with this team. A team that plays sloppy, bad ball and looks like they are sleep walking for the most part.

  13. jayrig5 5 years ago

    The fact that the manager is saying the team will be sellers is as clear an indication as you’ll find that he’s given up. What is he thinking? Just shut up and at least pretend to the press that you’re still trying to win, or step aside. What a circus.And Hendry did okay when he splurged to build the 2007/2008 teams, (in the last ten years of free agent deals, you won’t find many contracts that paid off more in value than the signings of Lilly and DeRosa, and until this year, Ramirez’s extension) but when he’s had to operate under a more fiscally sound regime (the 2008/09 and 09/10 offseasons) he’s done very, very poorly. In fact, this past offseason is almost a wash, because he did so badly the previous year (when he took a 97 win team, subtracted Mark DeRosa, Kerry Wood, and Reed Johnson, all huge clubhouse guys, as well as some other players and only added Heilman, Kevin Gregg, Aaron Miles (at 2 years, $5 mil!!), Joey Gathright, and He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named.) (Okay, Milton Bradley.) Of course, Lou is as much at fault as anyone. He showed the world that he had learned absolutely nothing from the Ken Phelps/Jay Buhner fiasco he presided over in New York, and demanded a more balanced lineup. So they traded DeRosa for peanuts to sign Bradley. Ignoring the fact that Bradley is a complete headcase, he’s also a switch-hitter, weak fielder, and he’s definitely not a run producer. Lou would love to platoon every day. But Hendry zeroed in on him, even though they could have had DeRosa and Adam Dunn or Raul Ibanez or Bobby Abreu for around the same price they paid to get Aaron Miles and Milton Bradley. That’s just a horror show of management at all levels, and they’re still paying for it this year.

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