View From The Bleachers

January 10, 2008

Brian Roberts and Other Fun Thoughts

Filed under: General — Joe Aiello @ 5:00 am

Everyone was all jacked up yesterday about rumors that a deal to bring Brian Roberts to Chicago was done and ready to be announced. The Orioles squashed those rumors mid-day and we’re left speculating not if anymore, but rather when. I’d like to say that I am sold on the fact that Roberts is coming, but as I mentioned before, I don’t know that the Cubs are willing to part with enough to get him. Rumors had the Sean’s and Ronny Cedeno going for Roberts. That’s too steep a price to bring in a guy that may still be disciplined in some form by the Commissioner for his role with PED’s. Roberts would make this lineup better, for the simple fact that his presence forces Alfonso Soriano out of the leadoff spot. I just don’t know that I’m ready to part with two guys that could be difference makers for us in the rotation this year and in years to come.

Phil Rogers said on his blog:

Jason Marquis and Dempster project as the most likely 4-5 starters for Lou Piniella. If Marshall and Gallagher were both traded to Baltimore, the cast behind them would be headed by Kevin Hart, the fragile Angel Guzman and unproven prospects Donald Veal, Jeff Samardzija, Adam Harben and Jose Ascanio.

That scares me. I’m not ready to go into this season knowing that if we have injuries or a Marquis second half explosion, our next option is a kid that hasn’t made a big league start (Hart), and a guy that can’t stay healthy. Why not keep Marshall at the very least?


Rick Telander, who has a Hall of Fame ballot due to his massive history as a baseball writer, posted a column yesterday about how he didn’t fill out his ballot this year because “The Steroid Era has taken the wind out of my sail.” Many people are up in arms about the fact that he wouldn’t send it in. Marc Silverman of ESPN 1000 said that Telander should have his ballot privileges revoked as a result.My question to you is twofold. First, Do you agree with Silverman? And second, Why do guys like Vin Scully, Marty Brennaman and Bill James not have votes? These are guys that know baseball like the back of their hand. Why does Joe Reporter have a vote and they don’t? This is why I could care less about the hall of fame.


Finally, I recorded the latest edition of the podcast on Tuesday with Brandon Rosage. On the most recent show, we talked about the Roger Clemens mess. It’s a compact 25 minute show that I think turned out well. Click here to download the mp3. Remember, you can also subscribe to the podcast feed by going to

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Joe Aiello is the founder of View From the Bleachers and one of the lead writers. Growing up in Chicago, he fondly remembers attending games in the bleachers before that was the popular thing to do. Currently Joe resides in North Carolina with his wife and three kids and helps people protect their assets as an independent insurance agent. Connect with Joe via Twitter / Facebook / E-mail

  • Matty J.

    To note even submit a ballot is a slap in the face. The guys that were on the ballot weren’t even a part of the roid era. All you had to do was look at Gossage and Dawson and know they weren’t roiding up.

    He should have his voter privledges revoked.

  • Jose

    Yes, he should have his ballot privileges revoked. None of the players who seriously had a chance to get in the hall of fame this year could ever be considered steroids users. I can see him wanting to vote zero for McGuire, but the rest of the guys deserved a vote.

    Regarding the Roberts trade. I would like him on our team. Why not suggest this? Take one of the pitchers off the list and add Murton? I would do that trade. Or why not send them Marquis and cash (a lot of it) and keep one of the young pitchers?

  • Joe Aiello

    Marquis doesn’t fit their wish list. They want young pitchers to build on.

  • Jacki

    I agree revoke his privileges. I really think all this steroid garbage is going to turn the Hall of Fame into a great big joke.

  • Matty J.

    I’d say it’s going to make the last fifteen years a joke, Jackie. The rest of eras are fine.

  • Jose

    I agree. Don’t we all want young pitchers to build on. The problem is we are stuck with Marquis(for two more years @ $8MM/yr). We need to move him to another team. He is not on my wish list.

  • Joe Aiello

    You guys know my feelings. I don’t feel we’re stuck with Marquis. He pitched well for half the year last year. He’s exactly what you expect a 5th starter to be, if not more.

  • Matty J.

    I thought fifth starters were supposed to be 20 game winners? :rolleyes:

    Marquis is fine as a fifth starter. I wouldn’t want him any higher than number four in my rotation.

  • 99yrs

    Marquis and Dempster are both #5’s. We have to do better then that.

    I would love to have Roberts. I would be suprised if he is punished by the commish for several reasons.
    I would try to give the O’s Marshall, Hart, Cedeno. They get two of our young guys but we get to keep one with some experience as well. Since we will need him when Marquis and/or Dempster forget where the edge of the plate is.

  • silk

    I thought Marquis was fine.

    Overvaluing Sean Marshall is a mistake Hendry cannot afford to make.

  • Joe Aiello

    But what about undervaluing Marshall.

  • Boomer

    The problem with Marquis is that the same production can be made by someone like a Gallagher. But for $8 million less. But that point is moot now that we are stuck with him. Marshall and Gallagher should be the 4th and 5th starters, but o’well.

    As for Telander, he joins the list of Chicago sportswriters that are complete idiots. I’m tempted to go to journalism school now just becuse it can’t be that tough to get a job in this city full of idiotic sportswriters.

    How about Mike Downey’s column today about Harold Baines. Give me an F’n break! And Phil Rogers not voting for Goose cuz Trevor Hoffman passed him in saves? wow. 2 years ago, Goose was a HOF’er for Rogers, and now he’s apparently not as good as he was.

  • Matty J.

    99 yrs, I’m curious into your reasons on why you don’t beleive Roberts will get in trouble. I’m in the same boat, but I’d like to hear your thoughts.

    Marshall is over valued IMHO.

  • Jacki

    How is Marshall over valued? In the fan’s minds or simply overpaid?

  • Matty J.

    If Hendry’s offering Cedeno and Gallagher, I guess he is undervaluing Marshall. I think Marshall is over valued in the fan’s eyes. I don’t see anything spectacular out of him.

  • Jose

    Joe and Matty J:
    I can not disagree with you more about Marquis. At $8MM, and for two more years, that is a ton of money for a pitcher who only pitches well for half a season. If we are lucky. What else can we be doing with that money? By the way, we can not even trust him to pitch in the post season. He has pitched so poorly that he has been basically left off two consecutive post season rosters. I have more confidence in our younger arms that perform the same and for a lot less.

  • Matty J.

    WE can’t do anything. It’s not OUR roster, and it’s not OUR money.

    Marquis is fine. The deal wasn’t great, but WE have to deal with it. It’s the economics of baseball at work, lack of good pitching on the free agent market? Oh well, the CUBS had to overpay, as would any other team.

    $8 Mil, is chump change nowadays.

  • 99yrs.

    Roberts is off the hook because:

    He owned up to what he did and apologized. It takes a man to do that. Something some of the other guys should take note of.

    He only took the steroids once or twice per his report. There are bigger fish to fry.

    It was a couple yrs ago. Not current/recent use.

    There is no proof. Except word of mouth. You really need a positive test to prove anything to the point of punishing someone. Otherwise everyone that Canseco lists in his book should be punished and I wouldn’t consider him an unbiased, reliable source.

    I think Selig is going to use the Mitchell report aginst the players union to prove that steroid use is commonplace, and there needs to be tougher drug testing. I don’t think there will be punishment to those in the report. Although I say that with some reservation because I don’t know what to think about Clemens.

  • Jose

    You are right, but it is OUR team and when we make a bad decision, either on the field or in management, we need to call that out. If not, what good is being a fan.

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