What’s up, Cubs fans? Yes, the Daver is back with a morning smattering of Cubs-related news items for your perusing pleasure. I hope everyone had a great Thanksgiving holiday. As we’re currently hovering in the limbo that exists between Turkey Day and the Winter Meetings, there’s not a ton of exciting stuff going on. But try a few of these bad boys on for size:
Could Takashi Saito be a surprise addition to the Cubs 2010 bullpen? Maybe. Both Chicago baseball teams are looking into the erstwhile Dodgers closer, who staged a comeback-from-injury of sorts last season with the Red Sox (great ERA, questionable WHIP). Saito had two incredible years with LA in 2006 and 2007, posting an amazing 6.00 K:BB ratio in the latter year.
Ricketts and Kenney go gator huntin’. Er, well, actually they’re looking at spring training facilities today in Collier County, Fla. It’s still a little hard to envision the Cubs leaving the more conveniently laid-out Arizona for the Florida swamps, but the Cubs new ownership appears intent on doing its due diligence.
Randy Wells adds to his win total with charity event (with a little help from Sam Fuld). He may not have won the Rookie of the Year, but Randy is still adding some shine to one of the bright spots of the 2009 season. He and outfielder Sam Fuld, who lives with diabetes, hosted a charity golf outing early last month in Wells’ native Belleville, Ill. Check out the details.
TBS leads with fist to give former Cubs broadcaster Chip Caray the ol’ heave-ho. If you both watched the 2009 MLB playoffs and spent any time on Twitter, you may be familiar with the “fisted” meme that caught on like a bad rash. Many fans found both great annoyance and humor at Chip’s constant “fisted!” refrain whenever a batter would, ahem, take one off the hands. Well, he’ll be fisting no more as TBS has decided to part ways with the Bud Man’s stiff-necked offspring.
Bruce Devine floats another wacky Milton trade scenario. Hey, what else have we got? In this live chat, Bruce reiterates that a Bradley-for-Burrell deal with the Tampa Rays still seems like the only feasible option for the Cubs at the moment. And Levine ups the ante by suggesting Jim Hendry could flip Pat the Bat to the Giants for Aaron Rowand. Now Giants GM Brian Sabean did emphatically dismiss any chance of a straight-up Bradley-for-Rowand bad-contract swap (wow, check out all the hyphens) during the recent GM meetings here in Chicago, but maybe he’d agree to this course of action — not that I’d be all that excited about an aging Aaron Rowand in centerfield at Wrigley.
Starlin Castro: Cubs 2010 shortstop? It’s a long shot but a strong spring training could motivate Lou to bring this white-hot prospect north for Opening Day (with Theriot moving to second base). Being a cautious sort, I’d rather see Castro play all or most of 2010 in Iowa. The Cubs need to draw a balance between rushing Castro to the big leagues (i.e., Patterson-style) or leaving him in the minors and then showing no patience with him once he’s up (i.e., Pie-style).
Hey, everyone, it’s arbitration day! Today is the deadline for major league teams to offer their free agents arbitration. So we shall see what becomes of Kevin Gregg (buh-bye), Reed Johnson (whose fate may hang on, what else, the Milton thing) and Rich Harden (whom I’d like to see back but the Cubs probably can’t afford). Bruce Miles gives a little more detailed and erudite run down. Update: Per WGN’s Dave Kaplan, the Cubs have decided NOT to offer salary arbitration to any of the three players mentioned.
The Hawk to the Hall — you’re dang right! Last but not least, Cubs fans everywhere should ready their pens, blogs, Twitter accounts, psychic energies, etc. to support Andre Dawson’s ninth bid for Cooperstown. (You will go in as a Cub, right, Andre?) Here’s the cubs.com article.