Odds & Ends: Cubs, Simmons, Crisp, Royals

On a night when Brian Matusz stifled the AL West leaders, here are some news items…

61 Responses to Odds & Ends: Cubs, Simmons, Crisp, Royals Leave a Reply

  1. Dave_Gershman 5 years ago

    If David Glass sells the Royals, I would really, really like to buy them. I can’t, not enough money.

    The Jays farm system really impresses me. I’ve gotten a chance to see Kyle Drabek pitch 4 times this summer and 1 of those starts was a no-hitter, one was a 6.0 IP shutout, the other was a 5.2 IP shoutout with 7 k’s, and the other one wasn’t so good…But he really looks great and he’s also a really nice guy, got a chance to talk to him the day before yesterday and he is an extremely likeable guy.

    Adeiny Hecchaverria is one of my favorites. Doesn’t speak much english, he can say thank you which I hear him say a lot, but he is making the adjustment to America very well. He and I have had a funny moment or two this summer with Jonathan Jaspe! good times.

    But the Jays farm system all in all is really really impressive, Michael McDade is a rising prospects and J.P. will be a great offensive catcher. I really also like the Jays draft picks from 2010. Aaron Sanchez hasn’t given up a run in 4 starts and he looks like he’s going to be a great pitcher. Sam Dyson is also the man.

    I didn’t mention this, but to me, watching Kyle Drabek all the time he reminds me a lot of Zack Greinke. And I’ve seen Kyle throw I think 6 pitches that were 97 or higher. Awesome!

    • moonraker45 5 years ago

      great post.. what kind of ceiling do you foresee for drabek?

      • Dave_Gershman 5 years ago

        Thanks man. I really have high hopes for him.

        I think Drabek can be a No .1 in any pitching staff. He has command of his fastball and his curveball which are both plus pitches. The change up is not as good but its effective. His fastball sits around 94-96 from the 1st inning and the 9th inning. He throws harder with runners on base which I guess is good but he always repreats his mechanics and is developing in to a great pitcher.

        So I see him as a Zack Greinke type pitcher but without a slider but a better fastball and curveball. Bryan Morgado and I were talking and we both believe Ruben Amaro should have kept him. As far as I know though, all of the Fisher Cats including Adeiny and Kyle will not be playing with the Jays in September.

        • Sniderlover 5 years ago

          I think he does have a slider is his arsenal but I don’t think it’s all that good. Change-up is something he is really developing and he could become a nasty pitcher with mid 90 fastball and a spiky curveball and a change-up to keep hitters off-balanced.

          I’m also very excited about Carlos Perez who is just tearing it up and is a solid all-around catcher. He may very well become our best prospect in another year or two. Jiminez is tearing it up as well and our catching depth is just fantastic. Our outfield isn’t too shabby either with the likes of Marisnick, Gose, Thames, Knecht (canadian kid). Wilson isn’t that bad either but he’ll need to cut down his strikeout but he is only 20 years old I think so he can still improve.

          It’s been a solid year overall for AA and the Jays!

          • Dave_Gershman 5 years ago

            Absolutley I agree.

            Perez is a guy with all of the skills. I saw him go deep for Auburn and then you know what I saw him do in the same game? Make there errors.

            So defense is a thing he really needs to work on.

        • moonraker45 5 years ago

          great insight man, thanks a lot.. and ya i’ve heard that as well. makes sense NH is playoff bound, as much as it would be nice to have hech and kyle up in sept i think it would be nice for them to achieve some success in the postseason.

          I’d anticipate Drabek will be a lock for the back end of the rotation next year. i doubt they will have him repeat AA and las vegas isn’t exactly a good spot to stick your star pitching prospect.

          Good posts.

          • Dave_Gershman 5 years ago

            Thanks man I appreciate it and you bet. I also wonder if either will play winter ball or go to the AFL…I doubt it, but just something to think about.

            I’m hoping we will see Kyle in the rotation next year. I’m sure we will buy hopefully sooner rather than later. Maybe Spring Training will determine whether Kyle will he the 5th starter but I agree, Las Vegas won’t really help him.

        • johnsmith4 5 years ago

          Thx for the good information….it is my impression (from a distance) that Drabek and Hecchaverria are the two prospects (if Arencibiba no longer counts as a prospect) who have an imminent future in the big leagues. Perhaps Zach Stewart as well. Does anyone have any information on Chris Lubanski? He seems like a dark horse.

          Finally, SPANdemonium, next year, you will have to tell us about Gose. Each year, as he advances, he seems to put up better stats. I am keen to see his results in AA next year.

          • moonraker45 5 years ago

            2nd half of the season Stewart has been just as good as Drabek, he might be a year behind in terms of when we’ll see him only because he’s not stretched out full as a starter yet, he should be shut down pretty soon…

            Lubanski is a dark horse indeed, although he’s put up decent numbers, a lot of it has been aided by the 51’s ball park, for example home avg .352 – road avg .282.. home slg .683 – road slg .500 home on base .411- road on base .335.. With the outfield that the jays have now and Lubanski’s age, i dont see him as anything more then a 4th OF.. if that

            My darkhorse that i’ve been watching closely this year has been shawn bowman, he’s had a tough go last few years with a bunch of injuries. I know he’s way to old to be playing AA but he was once a stud prospect. Maybe he can develop in to a decent player.

          • Lubanski was a former first round pick by the KC Royals who didn’t pan out as planned. He was passed on the depth chart by Mitch Maier–who is a train wreck–so obviosuly the Royals didn’t see a future in Lubanski despite the first round selection. However, as a former first rounder, the kid had potential. Maybe he’s a late-bloomer.

          • Dave_Gershman 5 years ago

            You got it man thank you! I guess Arencibia is still a prospect as long as he doesn’t reach 130 at bats…I probably would say Kyle is number 1 and adeiny is number 2 but the system is loaded, especially with all the arms AA took in the draft. Zach Stewart has been really interesting because he and Kyle Drabek have really carried the team in to what will be postseason Baseball in Double-A.

            Lubanski has been decent in Las Vegas but probably not good enough to be a top 20 prospect or take a starting job. I do are him as a future utility man.

            I’m a huge fan of Gose. I really think that sky is the limit for him even though we haven’t seen the great OBP and AVG yet, he really is a future Denard Span or Michael Bourn. Great instincts, great speed, just incredibly raw but if any organization will turn him in to a star, its the Jays.

            Keep an eye on Michael McDade. I really like him. Switch hitting power hitter who can also hit for average.

          • johnsmith4 5 years ago

            Yes McDade is a must watch….it looks like he will be playing in AA at age 21….most impressive.

          • Dave_Gershman 5 years ago

            He’s is a legit prospect but he needs to get on base more. Excited for him to come to New Hampshire. Maybe the next Mark Teixeira. Plus plus defender with big time power and can hit for average.

  2. withpower 5 years ago


  3. mrsjohnmiltonrocks 5 years ago

    The Mariners are eying Ted Simmons, the Marlins are too. He’s got a brilliant baseball mind, he’s always been good dealing with players in his various roles, and he’s done everything from player to GM, scout, farm director and absolutely great in his role in SD.

    Simmons is coaching a team in the Arizona Fall League. Maybe’s he’s considering saying yes to one of these teams. As a long time admirer of Simmons, I would love to see him get a shot somewhere to manage. I happen to think he’d be terrific, but even if he wasn’t, he just seems to be the kind of guy someone should give a chance to. He’s got to have a unique perspective.

    In SD, he’ll amble up to a player and engage them in conversations about various situations; they have a pleasant chat, and the player walks away having been coached without even realizing it.

    • Thanks for telling us more abouts Simmons, didin’t really know alot about him. Would fit in Seattle good because San Diego is very similar to us, in how you would build the team around (Pitching and Defense, with atleast average offense). Seeing it now, it looks like he would be a good fit for the team.

      • withpower 5 years ago

        Seattle is going to need a lot more help if they want to have even a below-average offense.

        Hell.. they need a whole lot more help just to get to ‘terrible’.

        • Not being rude saying this, I said on how they SHOULD be built around, not how they are now, which is complete crap. Terrible is definetly an understatment. like last year with one of the best pitching but worst ofense in AL, if it had even been below average or average, they would have won 90+ games. That is why some of the “focusing on pitching and defense” kind of doesn’t make sense unless you have a real clean up hitter and some other solid pieces. Our line up was build around some solid pieces (coming into the season) like Bradley, Lopez, Guti, but no real Clean Up hitter. And yes I understand that Safeco is a pitching park, but our park isn’t as tough on lefties as righties (ex. Beltre underperforming, Branyan having success), so that’s why I say a lefty (or switch hitter) power threat like Dunn or Pena would have success here and we should try and get.

          • withpower 5 years ago

            I don’t know if I would say Lopez or Bradley is a solid piece.

            Except Milton. He’s a solid piece of crap.


          • um wow I said in the parentheses COMING INTO THE SEASON, which means you base it on 2009 stats, which they where solid. I would still keep Guti because his defense is very vaulable. But Milton and Lopez are terrible and Lopez has a option after this year, which shouldn’t be picked up. Bradley, we are stuck with.

            You obliviously must be a Cubs fan if you hate Milton Bradley and trash the M’s that much.

          • withpower 5 years ago

            No, it was actually just a cheesy joke.

            You seem to think I’m arguing with you, but you’re a Seattle fan and I’m a Yankee fan. There’s nothing to argue about since your team isn’t relevant to anything mine is trying to do.

            Seattle is a terrible baseball team. It’s fun to talk about how terrible they are. And make some jokes about it.

          • HerbertAnchovy 5 years ago

            You have too much time on your hands if you enjoy making jokes about other clubs. Not every team has the luxury of being in NYC and having a huge payroll.

          • withpower 5 years ago

            When you have 127MM tied up in slap hitters, I think the payroll argument stands on less firm ground.

          • HerbertAnchovy 5 years ago

            No idea where your’re getting that figure from. Their payroll is listed at around 86MM, 7.2MM which is owed to Felix Hernandez, and I while Ichiro is a slap hitter, any team, including The Yankees, would love to have him around. The Yankees payroll is 206MM. Considering thats 120MM more, which is about The Tigers entire salary, it stands on very firm ground. I would, however, agree that they need more power, but obviously they can’t acquire it with a flick of a switch at this point.

          • withpower 5 years ago

            The value of Ichiro’s contract (91MM) plus the value of Chone Figgins’ contract (36MM) is 127MM.

            Seattle has lots of cash. Whether they choose to funnel it back into their team is their choice and should be addressed with local ownership.

          • HerbertAnchovy 5 years ago

            I thought you were talking yearly, in which case anyway, Ichiro is well deserving of that contract. Figgins is another matter completely. Ichiro is a lock for the HOF.

    • jeffmaz 5 years ago

      Simmons is a class act. I’ve followed him as a star catcher in STL; all the way to SD. The Padres catchers are striving for a reason. As a Padres fan, I’ve love to see them keep him as bench coach 1 more year. Also, Ted deserves a better team than the Mariners.

      • Dave_Gershman 5 years ago

        The Padres coaching staff is the equivalent of a president, vice, and Cabinet…Black, Balsley, and Simmons respectively.

        • jeffmaz 5 years ago

          Don’t forget Randy Ready, the hitting coach. He, too, will grabbed up by a lucky club. All 3 should be managing soon – just wait one more year and let the Padres make a couple of runs at the Series.

      • Um, what is wrong with going to Seattle? This isn’t like Pittsburg or Kansas City or Baltimore. The re-building will be short and our team has alot of money to spend (our payroll has gone down to 91 mill. after being over 100 in 07 and 08). We have some good prospects (Pindea, Ackley, Smoak, Moore, Franklin, Robles, Beavan, etc.) and the really only glaring problem is a power hitter, and a bottom of the rotation pitcher and some relevers would be needed as well. Not as bad as it looks.

        • jeffmaz 5 years ago

          No you’re right. They’ve made a lot of bad personel decisions. Are the Mariners buried in long term contracts with lousy players? That is the killer.

          • yeah your right. Jack Wilson, Milton Bradley are stuck for next year, and Figgins is for 3 more years. Jack will probably stay because SS, while it has a solid piece like Franklin and Triunfel there, are farther away and He will be there for next year. Bradley, hopefully can be a good 4th OF/ Part Time DH next year. Figgins, I see him being moved to 3B or could be traded in a salary dump (maybe).

          • HerbertAnchovy 5 years ago

            That’s if Jack Wilson can even stay healthy enough to play. He’s missed quite a bit of time.

          • Yeah he been on the DL 3 times since coming to Seattle last July 31, (missed all of last August, most of May and June, and now is out for the year slipping in his bathtub and breaking his finger) and Josh Wilson hasn’t done bad but he shouldn’t be the full time starter.

    • As a long time admirer of Simmons, I’d love to see him make the Hall of Fame. Boston and Cincy fans, prepare the tar and feathers, but I will go to my grave believing he was a better all-round catcher (offense and defense) than his peers Johnny Bench and Carlton Fisk. I have a blog at wordpress, titled brettkiser, that highlights Ted Simmons’ career. The man was outstanding and deserving of the Hall.

  4. Dave_Gershman 5 years ago

    This is honestly one of the best odds & ends I think this site has ever posted. Seriously. Really interesting information on all of the articles. Good stuff. I really like the AA one.

  5. diehardmets 5 years ago

    About the Free Agent Signings that Worked, how is R. A. Dickey not one that list? He’s being paid 600K and has a 2.2 WAR without being on the opening day roster (less playing time). That has to be one of the best signings of the off season.

    • EdinsonPickle 5 years ago

      Yeah, I think so too. The Mets really caught a good one in Dickey, and he has been such a big surprise in the rotation. I think he should’ve been in that article.

    • I was reading the comments and one guy said that, too. The post is really just listing some, you could really put alot more people than listed like Dickey, Jim Thome, Polanco, Livian Hernandez, etc. that could be up there.

      • Dave_Gershman 5 years ago

        And where in the world is Jon Garland? The Padres are only in 1st place right?

        • He is making 5.5 Million and has a WAR of .6, so he’s not as great. His FIP is 4.41 (which is in line with his career average but ERA is down so he been helped out by his defense) and his BB/9 is 4.02, when his career average is 3.00. He’s been solid, but not a steal (Fangraphs values him at 2.6 million $)

          • Dave_Gershman 5 years ago

            Give me all the stats you want, garland has been great

          • Ok I agree he’s been great, but as a steal for 5.3 mill., not really. He has been solid this year, and has been very valuable to the Padres staff. Good signing, but as “most for the least” pricewise, not really.

      • EdinsonPickle 5 years ago

        Polanco is overpaid and shouldn’t be on this list.

        • woops don’t know why I put his name on there, I was reading another article about him, probably lost track. He’s put up 2.1 WAR for 5.166 mil. Definetly not a steal, but (outside of the health problem and length) a good signing.

  6. jeffmaz 5 years ago

    To replace Tony Gwynn Jr. SD should rent Coco Crisp for the rest of the season on their run to win the Series. With his speed, he’d thrive on the Padres.

    • The only placed Coco Crisp has thrived since he left the Indians is the DL.

  7. Not to sure about moving Colvin to first base. First base is a power position, and Colvin has a .310 OBP and a .250 batting average at the time of this writing. Sure, he has 18 home runs, but in a year where the Cubs offense sucks, he looks like a god.

    Now, he is young, and has upside, but if we have the crop we have right now, next season, I don’t see a whole lot changing wins wise. In my opinion we need a slugger and some speed. And of course, bullpen help.

    The gaps are so large so suddenly. Good luck Jim Hendry.

  8. Simmons Seattle, urgh I dont know about this one. How is this appreciably different than holding on to Wak and establishing some continuity. I like him, and think he deserves a shot, but Seattle. No. By the comments surrounding the firing I see them going after a big name. They spend money, so why not. They want someone who can control a clubhouse, and has players respect. A newbie from outside the org. doesn’t bring that. May as well try Daren Brown, the interim, over Simmons if that is the way the GM is leaning. I think Bobby V. is their choice, Simmons = due diligence.

    • I already read that Bobby V. isn’t as interested in the M’s as much as others. (suprising he isn’t interested in a job, regardless of who.)Simmons has been noted as great with handling players, and it doesn’t take that long to get to know someone, spring training is usually enough. I think he would be great for the M’s.

    • louis_09 5 years ago

      Gordon: I don’t understand your adversion to Ted Simmons, namely because in your post you had no detail.

      Ted Simmons was a MLB catcher for MANY years, and thus has an inherent knowledge of the game — catchers seem to develop a much deeper understanding of the WHOLE game (at least those that stick around), as they are not only concerned with player positioning but also with pitch calling and the various ‘situational’ aspects on the field. Ted was the best switch-hitting catcher in the history of the game — that said, he has a knowledge of hitting as well. He was the GM in Pittsburgh when they still had direction (pre-Cam Bonifay), but absolutely NO payroll — his stint as a GM was cut short by a heart attack. Before that he was used in a scouting capacity, and was also used in a scouting capacity afterwards (I believe with Cleveland?).
      Ted Simmons left the game due to health issues, and has quietly rose to being the bench coach in San Diego. Just because he has done this quietly, and only now is the media picking up on him, doesn’t mean he is not as qualified as Randy Ready or some of these other ‘media picks’ we’ve read about every day.

      Bobby Valentine is a “big name” manager, but don’t you think that if he was THAT good teams would have hired him out of Japan? “Oh, but he won with the Mets” — yeah, and he lost with them. I feel sorry that he had to deal with Steve Phillips, but the fact was that his last year in New York he LOST. He went to the World Series once (losing to the Yankees), but never won his division.

      No offense, but if I was a Mariners fan…I’d want the best BASEBALL man, not the “biggest name”.

      • louis_09 5 years ago

        …and no one has mentioned that Ted Simmons and Jack Z. worked together.

        In Pittsburgh.

  9. YanksFanSince78 5 years ago

    What about Vlad G? For about $5.5 mil he’s going to deliver a .300/.350 line w/ about 100 RBI for a 1st place team. Considering he’s playing on a 1st place team and along with Young was the only RH power bat in the lineup I would say he had an immense impact on the team this year and really protected Hamilton this year.

    And how did they leave Nick Johnson off of that list? joking

    • Vlad probably should be up there too. Very good steal by Texas after Aniheim (I refuse to call them L.A. ’cause they aren’t) pretty much felt like his career was over and just writ him off.

      Oh yes, great sign by geting a guy that average’s (not counting 2001 and counting his missed 2007 year) around 85 games a year played. Very Healthy.

  10. gcheezpuff 5 years ago

    Next year is a wash for the Cubs, I don’t expect them to contend until at least 2012… That being said I don’t think they should be very active on the FA market. Force ARAM to 1st since he undoubtably will exercise his option and try Dewitt a full season at 3rd (which is his natural position) to see what you got. If ARAM adjusts well to 1st and bounces back offensively you can reward him with an extension and if Dewitt handles the hot corner well and ups his offensive production you got both positions filled.

  11. Gil Meche plans on pitching out of the bullpen next year. Will that make him the highest priced mop-up man in baseball at $55 million dollars? As a Royals fan, I love Gil’s team-first mindset (something he has failed to pass on to Zack “Look at the pretty butterflies dancing behind home plate” Greinke) but his pitch-through-injury thought process has ruined his stamina. As far as Glass selling the team, there are media outlets here in KC that say the rumor is legit, but it might be like Drayton McLane in Houston who isn’t actively shopping the team but simply open to offers.

    To the Cubs fans, I thought they had high hopes for Micah Hoffpauir. Have they soured on him? I wanted to see him play everyday just a year ago.

  12. The Cardinals minor leeague system has a boost with the new signings of the draft picks. I do not care what the experts say, the minor league system keep their records up over the .500 mark, by having a bad minors. The prospects can not be that bad. Of course, Jockerty is a fool for drafting Kozma as a 1st round pick.

  13. wheresthehawk 5 years ago

    Cubs are done until 2012/’13, maybe even ’14. Maybe an entire decade. This is just horrible. HENDRY MUST GO! HENDRY MUST GO! HENDRY MUST GO! HENDRY MUST GO!

    • Slopeboy 5 years ago

      I always thought that Cub fans embraced losing with a smile. Isn’t it in your DNA ? or at least a tradition? So why would you want to get rid of Hendry??

  14. SosaCrackers 5 years ago

    Before anybody jumps all over this comment, it’s an idea, not my wish of what will happen. What if the Cubs moved Colvin to 1st full time to keep his arm strong and prevent injury in the future (I know he’s had tommy john surgery), keep Ramirez at 3rd just because DeWitt isn’t impressive so far. Then sign a right fielder, maybe Ordonez? I haven’t heard much about him this season, has he bounced back from last years disaster? Would he accept a 1-max 2 year contract mostly incentives?

  15. Cards_Fanboy 5 years ago

    I’m curious how Meche would do as a closer and Soria as a starter.

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