Cubs Notes: Jackson, Valbuena, Stewart

Alfonso Soriano hit his 30th home run of the season last night, reaching the threshold for the sixth time in his career and for the first time since 2007. The 36-year-old now has a .261/.317/.499 batting line in 568 plate appearances this year. He'll earn $18MM per season through 2014 on a contract that no longer seems as unmovable as it once did. Here are some Cubs-related notes from Paul Sullivan of the Chicago Tribune

  • The idea of spending $150MM-plus on an impact player such as Josh Hamilton isn’t part of the Cubs’ plan, Sullivan reports. He notes that David DeJesus’ $10MM contract and Paul Maholm’s $4.75MM contract were the largest deals the Cubs signed a year ago.
  • However, the team expects to be able to spend. "Right now it's kind of hard to say,” manager Dale Sveum said. “You just don't know who will be available. But yeah, we'll spend money somewhere."
  • The Cubs need multiple starters, multiple relievers a center fielder, and a third baseman in Sullivan’s estimation. It appears that the Cubs will give Brett Jackson another look in center field despite his poor contact rate.
  • Luis Valbuena will be tendered a contract, but Ian Stewart is expected to be non-tendered, Sullivan writes. "Valbuena is going to be part of the organization, and he does one heck of a job himself," Sveum said. MLBTR's Steve Adams discussed Stewart as a non-tender candidate last month.
  • Josh Vitters appears to be a long shot at third base, according to Sullivan.

26 Responses to Cubs Notes: Jackson, Valbuena, Stewart Leave a Reply

  1. CandyMaldonadoLand 3 years ago

    Brett Jackson needs a little more seasoning in the minor leagues. He needs better plate discipline and pitch recognition. You need to make contact in the majors….unless you’re Adam Dunn, Carlos Pena, Mark Reynolds,…
    Maybe you don’t.

    • slasher016 3 years ago

      Yeah except those guys have elite power. Jackson has 55 career minor league homers over 4 seasons. He’s Drew Stubbs without elite speed.

      • Kevin Jebens 3 years ago

        Was just thinking of him as a Stubbs comparable. Power and speed, but he has a horrible BA. That being said, the Cubs really might as well let him play in 2013 full time. If he can’t hack it, it’s time to move on, and when they’re starting to compete more, they can sign a FA outfielder if needed.

    • jb226 3 years ago

      He has needed that his entire time in the minor leagues, though. At some point we have to realize it’s unlikely he suddenly discovers plate discipline or pitch recognition, and evaluate the player he is instead of the player we want him to be.

    • Njriv 3 years ago

      Jackson actually has a good batter’s eye at the plate. He draws a lot of walks and works the count a lot, he just has poor contact skills.

  2. Brett Jackson is going to hit 8th and play CF next year Guaranteed. He reminds me of Mike Cameron.

    • Mike Cameron is/was his upside, maybe. These days, well…

      Put it this way: Cameron’s career K rate was 24%. Jackson is at 42% so far. And he’s 25, so…

  3. Murderers' Row Boat 3 years ago

    The Ricketts will start spending money on the Cubs once they get bored with dumping millions into politics.

    • Or, you know… once they’re close enough for it to make a difference.

      Because, that’s you know… what they said and all.

      • Murderers' Row Boat 3 years ago

        Spending money just to spend money isn’t wise, but they are billionaires who are more than capable of competing while they are rebuilding. Baseball also has a pretty strong rule for owners, “Stay out of politics”. Steinbrenner got in trouble for that in the 80’s and got banned for a bit.

  4. daveineg 3 years ago

    The Cubs will likely grab some bargain starting pitching that they can flip at next year’s deadline. Sveum and Bosio are familiar with Carlos Villanueva, so I can see a guy like him getting interest.

  5. The Rays should take Soriano this offseason if they only have to pay a mil. or two of his salary per year. I wouldnt give up great prospects but i would take a chance on Soriano hitting 25 home runs and platooning in the outfield and DH. Uptons gone so he could fill in some innings in left or right field, and they always seem to need a power bat.

    • Al Paca 3 years ago

      Rays won’t be able to have it both ways – they can give up very good prospects and cubs will eat $16M/yr or they can give up good prospects ( or someone already in the bigs) and cubs eat $12M/yr. Cubs don’t need to salary dump and should be content on keeping him if right offer isn’t made. Rizzo/Sori/Castro seems to be a nice 3/4/5 so far. I can see him heading to boston if Ortiz doesn’t comeback.

    • dc21892 3 years ago

      They’d likely have to pay more than that unless they’re willing to give up good prospects. Why would Chicago pay 95% of his salary for a not so great player in return with little or no upside? At that point you just keep him and pay the 100%.

      • Kevin Jebens 3 years ago

        Agreed, dc. Soriano isn’t amazing anymore (if he ever was), but he’s respectable. I wouldn’t just dump him while paying nearly all his salary. He’s a team leader and a face for fans to look to, while the Cubs rebuild.

        • You’re both right. What i meant by not giving up a great prospect was not giving up the top one or two prospects in my organization, but do you think someone in the lower half (5-10) of the top ten could possible work?

          • dc21892 3 years ago

            In the case, yeah. Soriano won’t net a big and attractive return, but a top 5-10 prospect and the Cubs paying most of the salary could certainly work. I was under the impression you were thinking they could pay little salary and give up anything of value.

  6. Al Paca 3 years ago

    My last post had to be approved by a moderator and has yet to appear. – is this a random selection or am I being singled out for some reason. ( I am going on the assumption that this too will goto the moderator and is directed at him/her)

    • Tko11 3 years ago

      We dont like alpacas round here :)

    • You probably used one of the list of words that gets flagged. There are some words that can be used innocently that get flagged anyway, because so often they are part of abusive posts. Maybe go to this page again and try it another time, watching the wording carefully.

  7. Bob Bunker 3 years ago

    Cubs should only sign people that can still help them in 2015. I don’t know how many guys out there can. Anibel Sanchez comes to mind since Theo never wanted to do the Beckett trade and he is still under 30.

  8. BobSmith77 3 years ago

    Should consider Greinke but he’s likely to get ridiculously overpaid even compared to FA standards if he produces anywhere like he has the past few years. Too bad for them that guys like Cain or Hamels who would have been worth breaking the bank for are off the table now.

  9. sarcasm_robot 3 years ago

    possible FA SP with upside who would prob sign 1 year deals with something to prove: De La Rosa, Liriano, Dice K, Jonathon Sanchez, Feldman. Possibly McCarthy, Scott Baker.

    • Shel K 3 years ago

      …Peavy. Assuming all the above are expected to be flipped by the trade deadine.

  10. Douglas Bath 3 years ago

    nobody will want Soriano’s contract even if he finishes on an amazing run and ends with 35 homers and 120 RBI. who wants to pay 36 million for 2 years to a guy with no on base skills, average defense, and bad knees? He could be traded… but only if the Cubs eat 20 million. But that’s not the same as saying his contract no longer seems unmovable.

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