February 2012

Chicago Cubs Release 2012 Broadcast Schedule

  This really is a great time of year, it seems that almost every day brings new signs that the baseball season is right around the corner.  Today’s treat, the Cubs have release the broadcast schedule for the 2012 season.  Let’s take a look, get your DVR’s ready!

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Say Hello To…The Cubs Dominican Academy

Tom Ricketts has been a busy man.  Late last week Ricketts was in the Dominican Republic to unveil plans for a brand new, one of kind facility.  The 50 acre facility will be located in the town of La Gina, which is just outside of Santo Domingo, and very close to the airport.  Just a few of the luxuries that Dominican ball players will have are a total of four fields, one of which being artificial turf.  The academy will also be home to four batting cages, eight bullpens, a weight room, and two locker rooms.  Rumor has it that the facility will also have a video room, which is a tremendous tool for not only scouting these players, but allowing this players to learn like major league ballplayers learn.  Another solid feature of the academy is that it is almost laid out like a college.  There is a cafeteria, a dormatory, meeting/class rooms, and has the capabilities to house 80 members including staff and players. 

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Cubs Claim Adrian Cardenas; Designate Blake DeWitt

Cubs claim 24-year old Adrian Cardenas off of waivers from the Oakland A’s.  Cardenas was drafted by the Philadelphia Phillies in

Adrian Cardenas

the first round of the 2006 MLB Amateur Draft.  Oakland acquired Cardenas in 2008 in the Joe Blanton deal.  He has spent his first six first seasons in the minor leagues, including last year where he played second, short, third, and left field at the Triple-A level.  The left-handed hitting Cardenas hit .314 with and OBP of .374.  He has shown little power thus far in his career, however has been a career .303 hitter with an OBP of .368.  In order to make room for Cardenas on the 40-man roster the Cubs designated 26-year old Blake DeWitt for assignment.  DeWitt, a former 2004 first round pick by the Dodgers, came to Chicago in the deal that sent Ted Lilly and Ryan Theriot to the Dodgers in 2010.  In his career DeWitt has a line of .260/.305/.385.  The Cubs avoided arbitration with DeWitt this offseason agreeing on a $1.1 MM deal for the 2012 season.

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Around the League: Week of January 30, 2012

Around the League:  January 30, 2012 – February 5, 2012

For the remainder of the off season, we will provide you with a quick trip around MLB to recap what has happened in the past week, thanks for following.

Monday, January 30, 2012

  • Victor Martinez had micro-fracture surgery to repair the medial and lateral meniscus in his left knee.  He expects to have ACL surgery in six-to-eight weeks, officially ending his 2011 season before it started.
  • Pat Burrell retired at the age of 35 due to chronic foot injury.
  • Manager Ron Washington received a two-year extension through 2014.
  • Orioles sign RHP Pat Neshek, C Ronny Paulino, and 17 year old LHP Seong-Min Kim to minor league contracts.
  • Brewers sign former Cub outfielder Corey Patterson to a minor league contract.
  • Yankees sign RHP Manny Delcarmen to a minor league contract

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Cubs and Garza Avoid Arbitration, Strike a Deal

Pitcher Matt Garza, and the Chicago Cubs beat the arbitration clock this morning by agreeing to a one year deal for the 2012 season.  Garza will make $9.5 million as well as performance bonuses included in the contract.  A common ground was found after the Cubs were looking to lock Garza up for $7.95 million and Garza was looking for $12.5 million according to a Major League source.

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Cubs Sign Cuban Prospect Concepcion

According to Jorge Ebro of El Nuevo Herald, the Cubs have signed Cuban left handed pitching prospect, Gerardo Concepcion to a $7

Signed, Sealed, and Delivered

million guaranteed contract.  Concepcion, 18, was declared a free agent last week by Major League Baseball. It is believed he had several teams interested in him, before he ultimately chose to sign with the Cubs.  Reports have the 6-foot-2 lefty featuring a low 90s fastball to go along with a curveball and change-up.  Concepcion was named the Cuban National Series Rookie of the Year, posting a 10-3 record and a 3.36 ERA.

By all reports this is a nice signing for the Cubs.  This will give them another young pitching prospect which they desperately need and should help the Cubs in the future.  Reports have Concepcion with the potential to be middle of the rotation starter in the big leagues, but how his skills will translate to the major league level is yet to be seen, but at 18 there is a lot of time to mature and grow.

Might the Cubs sign another Cuban before spring training?  It is possible, they, as well as several other teams have shown interest in outfielders, Yoenis Cespedes and Jorge Soler.  With the first of the three Cuban players signed, when will the other two go and where?

-Mark Sorrentino

Who is Yoenis Cespedes?

There has been a lot of talk about the newest free agent in major league baseball.  If we know one thing, this man has one hell of a production staff, I mean look at this quality (Click to open the 20 minute Cespedes showcase video, yes 20 minutes, there’s a pig on a spit at the end, not sure why, but if you are against that type of thing, please don’t watch).   The video in it of itself is impressive, there is no denying that, it’s just hard to get past the “second coming” feel it has to it.  What we also know is that the Cubs have been consistently mentioned as one of the 6 teams that are showing serious interest, along with the Marlins, White Sox, Orioles, Tigers (not so much since Prince?), and a mystery team.   When we really take a look at who he is, does the baseball talent warrant the hoopla surrounding the latest Cuban defector?  Let’s get to know him.

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Garza Arbitration Hearing Set For Tomorrow

Matt Garza will have an arbitration hearing tomorrow to determine how much he will earn this upcoming season.  The two sides have not been able to come to an agreement and are quite far apart as the Cubs offered $7.95 million while Garza is looking for $12.5 million for the 2012 season.

Last year, Garza made $5.9 million and was the Cubs best starting pitcher posting a 10-10 record with a 3.32 ERA.  At 28 he is under team control through the 2013 season, thus making him arbitration-eligible again next year.

Tomorrow we will discuss the arbitration decision and what the future might hold for Matt Garza.

-Mark Sorrentino

MLB Top 100 Prospects

Last week Jonathan Mayo, of MLB.com released his list of Major league Baseball’s Top 100 Prospects.  Matt Moore and Bryce Harper sit atop at spots one and two respectively, while Cubs outfielder Brett Jackson, first baseman Anthony Rizzo, and shortstop Javier Baez cracked the 2012 list.  Below is a quick look at these fine Cub prospects, as well as the entire Top 100 list.

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