If you’ve read the blog for awhile, you’ll know that I’m a pretty traditional guy when it comes to roster construction. For as long as I can remember, I’ve really enjoyed the front office side of baseball, when it comes to roster moves and designing a complete and competitive roster. That said, I’m sort of an old school curmudgeon when it comes to what I like and what I don’t like, and there are things about this current roster that drive me bananas.
Bloated Bullpens – This one drives me completely insane. I’m a big proponent of the seven man bullpen. The Cubs have carried eight and as many as nine in the pen. That’s insane. There is absolutely no reason for it, especially with this current starting staff that has shown they will consistently work deep into ball games. The bloated bullpen has two main flaws. It takes away your offensive and defensive flexibility in the late innings. Because you’re down a position player, it prohibits a little of the creativity that I would love to see from someone as bright a baseball thinker as Joe Maddon. Second, it prevents you back end of the pen guys from staying sharp because they aren’t needed very often. Take Clayton Richard, for example. In the last seven days, he’s thrown one inning. For the year, he’s under six. This for a guy who has the endurance to throw that in one outing, and he’s considered you long man. How can you expect him to be a long man if he doesn’t have the opportunity to throw long outings? I cannot stand how this pen is constructed.
Three Catchers – This one is just stupid. There is no reason to have three catchers unless one of them is named Kyle Schwarber and if Tim Federowicz has his name changed to Kyle Schwarber, I retract that statement too. Maddon has said that he likes the flexibility that having the extra catcher on the roster gives him, because it means he can pinch hit with a catcher late and not have to worry about being without. I call BS. Too many managers are so afraid that use that backup guy for fear that they will have no one to catch in the event of an emergency, but every team has that guy that can strap on the gear and get behind the plate for an inning or two. You call the pitches from the dugout and finish the game. If you don’t have that guy, you approach someone on the roster you believe can do it and have them practice it every now and then (paging Clayton Richard). To top it all off, Federowicz is not even a good player, so it’s not like you’re holding a roster spot because you’ve got an abundance of talent back there. When Matt Szczur comes back this week, Federowicz needs to be sent down and we need to do away with this three catcher nonsense.
- The Cubs have outrighted OF Ryan Kalish to Iowa. I’m glad to see he’s staying in the organization as a filler, but he doesn’t have much place on this major league team unless it’s in a pinch.
- Jason Grimm answered some mailbag questions here
- The Cubs did Karaoke, even without Munenori Kawasaki and you can watch it here.
- Pedro Strop said something dumb
Iowa Cubs (AAA) – Lost 5-3 to Reno
- SP – Drew Rucinski – 6 IP, 11 H, 3 R, 2 K
- LF – John Andreoli – 1-for-4, 2B, R
- Dan Vogelbach was named the Pacific Coast League player of the week for last week. He hit .333 (8-for-24) with 3 HR, 2 2B, 8 RBI.
Tennessee Smokies (AA) – Lost 3-2 to Birmingham
- SP - Paul Blackburn – 6 IP, 3 H, R, 3 BB, 3 K
- SS – Chesny Young – 3-for-4, R, BB
- INF Stephen Bruno, has been activated from the Disabled List
Myrtle Beach Pelicans (A-Adv) – Lost 5-2 to Frederick
- SP – Jonathan Martinez – 6 IP, 8 H, 5 R, BB, 3 K, HR
- DH – Yasiel Balaguert – 2-for-4, 2B, RBI
- RHP Michael Wagner, has been assigned to Myrtle Beach from Triple-A Iowa and placed on the 7-day disabled list.
- Jason Vosler was named the Carolina League’s Player of the Week