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Chicago Cubs MLB News - Cubs Baseball Blog » 2011 » July

Reed Johnson could be in line for more P.T. for the Chicago Cubs or he could be dealt

Blogged under Bloglockers, Front Page, General, Playing Well by chinmusic on Thursday 28 July 2011 at 12:42 pm

34-year old righty swinging outfielder Reed Johnson is in line for either more P.T. due to the trade of Kosuke Fukudome to the Indians, or he could be dealt by Sunday’s trade deadline. Johnson has played in 63 games for the Cubs so far this year and he is 45 for 137 (.328 avg, .924 OPS) with 18 runs scored, 4 homers, 23 RBIs and 2 stolen bases. Those are amazing numbers when you consider that he has only walked 3 times while whiffing 36 times. Johnson can play all three outfield spots which will make him valuable on the trade market. It will be interesting to see if Johnson gets a bump up in P.T. or if he’s dealt to another team this week.

The Chicago Cubs deal Kosuke Fukudome to the Cleveland Indians

Blogged under Arrivals & Departures, Bloglockers, Front Page, General by chinmusic on Thursday 28 July 2011 at 11:29 am

The Cubs have sent 34-year old lefty swinging outfielder Kosuke Fukudome and $3.9 million bucks to the Cleveland Indians for 21-year old righty swinging outfielder Abner Abreu and 25-year old righty reliever/starter Carlton Smith. Neither of the prospects the Cubs got from the Indians were ranked in the Tribe’s top 30 prospects before the 2011 season started according to Baseball America. Abner has played in 91 games in A-ball so far this year and he is 82 for 336 (.244 avg, .723 OPS) with 42 runs scored, 12 homers, 35 RBIs and 19 stolen bases. He has now played in 367 games in his first five years in the minors and he is 379 for 1,418 (.267 avg, .754 OPS) with 188 runs scored, 38 homers, 201 RBIs and 42 stolen bases. Abreu is still young but he still hasn’t played above A-ball in his first five years in the minors, so you have to wonder about him. Carlton Smith has pitched in 34 games (0 starts) in AAA-ball so far this year and he is 2-3 with 2 saves, a 4.50 ERA and a 1.41 WHIP. Smith has now pitched in 194 games (66 starts) in his first 7 years in the minors and he is 36-28 with 8 saves, a 4.21 ERA and a 1.30 WHIP.

Kosuke Fukudome was a gigantic bust in his time with the Cubs. He was expected to be a cross between Ichiro Suzuki and Hideki Matsui, but that never happened. Fukudome played in 87 games for the Cubs this year and he was 80 for 293 (.273 avg, .742 OPS) with 33 runs scored, 3 homers, 13 RBIs and 2 stolen bases. He played in 513 games in his four years with the Cubs and he was 432 for 1,651 (.262 avg, .772 OPS) with 236 runs scored, 37 homers, 169 RBIs and 27 stolen bases. The Cubs save $775,000 bucks in this deal but that’s about it as the “prospects” the Indians sent the Cubs are not very promising.

The Chicago Cubs will look a lot different on August 1st

Blogged under Bloglockers, Front Page, General, If I Were GM, Trade Rumors by chinmusic on Tuesday 26 July 2011 at 7:12 am

The Chicago Cubs are going to be dumping players like it’s out of style this week. With the Cubs willing to absorb most, if not all of Alfonso Soriano’s contract, I see him getting dealt this week. Carlos Pena is another one of the really solid trade chips the Cubs have with the Yankees and Pirates likely being the most interested. Marlon Byrd, Kosuke Fukudome and Geovany Soto are other starting players that could be on the move by this coming up Sunday. Blake DeWitt, Jeff Baker and Reed Johnson are reserve players who are wanted by other teams and the Cubs will likely move them if they get a decent prospect in return for them. The most likely pitcher to be dealt this week will be lefty reliever John Grabow. Starters Ryan Dempster, Carlos Zambrano and Rodrigo Lopez are all available for trade also. Righty reliever Kerry Wood doesn’t want to be traded but the Cubs could get something nice for him. The Cubs need to tear the roster down and rebuild it so that they can get back to winning in the future.

Matt Garza has been solid for the Chicago Cubs

Blogged under Bloglockers, Front Page, General, Throwing Well by chinmusic on Thursday 21 July 2011 at 7:26 pm

27-year old righty starting pitcher Matt Garza has been solid overall this year for the Cubbies. Garza has started 18 games for the Cubs so far this year and he is 4-7 with a 3.80 ERA and a 1.31 WHIP. He has given up 104 hits in his first 109 innings pitched this year and he has whiffed 110 batters while only walking 39 of them. Garza has been nowhere near as dominating as the Cubs thought he would be in the National League, but he should have a winning record with the way he has pitched so far this year.

The Chicago Cubs sign Dave Bush

Blogged under Arrivals & Departures, Bloglockers, Front Page, General by chinmusic on Friday 15 July 2011 at 1:48 pm

The Cubs have signed 31-year old righty reliever/starter Dave Bush to a minor league deal. Bush pitched in 17 games (3 starts) earlier this year for the Rangers and he was 0-1 with a 5.79 ERA and a 1.50 WHIP. He has now pitched in 210 games (187 starts) in his first 8 years in the majors and he is 56-69 with a 4.70 ERA and a 1.31 WHIP. The Cubs are desperate for pitching so Bush will be called up if he gets off to a good start in the minors.

The Chicago Cubs had a first half to forget in 2011

Blogged under Bloglockers, Front Page, General, Weekly Results by chinmusic on Wednesday 13 July 2011 at 8:21 am

The Chicago Cubs finished up the first half of the 2011 season with a 37-55 record which has them in 5th place in the N.L. Central, 12 games behind the Cardinals and Brewers. The Cubs are also 17 games behind the Braves in the Wild Card chase. The Cubs are going to be big time sellers at the trade deadline and the second half of the season is likely going to be a very depressing one for the team and it’s fans. Here’s a look at the players who made the biggest impact in the first half of the 2011 season:

Team MVP: 33-year old righty swinging 3B Aramis Ramirez has been the best hitter on the team this year. He has played in 86 games for the Cubs so far this year and he is 99 for 332 (.298 avg, .843 OPS) with 43 runs scored, 15 homers and 51 RBIs. Ramirez has stated that he won’t waive his no-trade clause because he likes playing in Chicago. We’ll see if he changes his tune though with a lot of his buddies on the way out at the end of this month.

Biggest Surprise: 25-year old 2B Darwin Barney snapped up the starting job at 2B in spring training and he has been really solid for the Cubs this year. Barney has played in 75 games for the Cubs so far this year and he is 90 for 294 (.306 avg, .709 OPS) with 40 runs scored, 1 homer, 31 RBIs and 4 stolen bases. The Cubs hope he finishes the 2011 season strongly.

Biggest Disappointment: A lot of Cubs players could fit right here, but I’m going with 25-year old lefty swinging outfielder Tyler Colvin. Colvin looked solid as a rookie in 2010 and he was in line to push Kosuke Fukudome to the bench this year, but that just hasn’t worked out. Colvin has not looked like the same player he was before he got his lung collapsed by a broken bat last year. Colvin has played in 38 games for the Cubs so far this year and he is 10 for 95 (.105 avg, .385 OPS) with 5 runs scored, 2 homers and 8 RBIs.

The Chicago Cubs release two minor league players

Blogged under Arrivals & Departures, Bloglockers, Front Page, General, The Minors by chinmusic on Saturday 9 July 2011 at 3:39 pm

The Cubs have released 28-year old switch-hitting outfielder Fernando Perez and 36-year old righty swinging infielder Augie Ojeda. Perez came over from the Rays in the Matt Garza deal over the winter. He played in 76 games in AAA-ball this year and he was 60 for 252 (.238 avg, .649 OPS) with 43 runs scored, 3 homers, 20 RBIs and 17 stolen bases. Augie Ojeda played in 18 games in AAA-ball so far this year and he was 10 for 50 (.200 avg, .501 OPS) with 7 runs scored and 3 RBIs. The Cubs won’t miss either of these guys this year or down the road.

Ryan Flaherty is looking good in the minors for the Chicago Cubs so far this year

Blogged under Bloglockers, Front Page, General, The Minors by chinmusic on Thursday 7 July 2011 at 5:37 pm

If the Chicago Cubs starting dealing infielders this month (like Jeff Baker/Blake DeWitt), maybe 24-year old lefty 2B/3B Ryan Flaherty could get a shot with them. Flaherty came into this season as the Cubs’ #22 prospect according to Baseball America. Flaherty has played in 78 games in AA-ball so far this year and he is 86 for 285 (.302 avg, .909 OPS) with 49 runs scored, 14 homers, 65 RBIs and 4 stolen bases. He has now played in 396 games in his first four years in the minors and he is 418 for 1,480 (.282 avg, .823 OPS) with 244 runs scored, 52 homers, 244 RBIs and 22 stolen bases.

Matt Garza is starting to get into a good groove for the Chicago Cubs

Blogged under Bloglockers, Front Page, General, Throwing Well by chinmusic on Thursday 7 July 2011 at 12:38 pm

27-year old righty starting pitcher Matt Garza has been sharp lately for the Cubs. In his last three starts, Garza is 1-1 with a 2.53 ERA and a 0.75 WHIP. Garza has now started 15 games for the Cubs this year and he is 4-7 with a 3.77 ERA and a 1.27 WHIP. He has only given up 86 hits in 93 innings while whiffing 95 batters, so his stuff has been there. The Cubs have not helped him much with the bullpen and offense sometimes not showing up when he pitches. If Garza starts getting some help, his record will no doubt improve.

Starlin Castro will be the lone Chicago Cubs player on the All-Star team

Blogged under Bloglockers, Front Page, General, Playing Well by chinmusic on Wednesday 6 July 2011 at 9:52 am

21-year old righty swinging shortstop Starlin Castro will be the only Chicago Cubs player at the All-Star Game next week. Castro has played in 84 games for the Cubs so far this year and he is 110 for 358 (.307 avg, .764 OPS) with 46 runs scored, 2 homers, 38 RBIs and 10 stolen bases. Castro has now played in 209 games in his first two years with the Cubs and he is 249 for 821 (.303 avg, .759 OPS) with 99 runs scored, 5 homers, 79 RBIs and 20 stolen bases. Castro looks like a building block for the future for the Chicago Cubs.

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