Monday, May 16, 2011

Rebuild or Compete...How About "Commit"

As I sit on the pot, I can't help but wonder what exactly the Cubs are going to do this season, in preparation of next season. By signing Carlos Pena and trading for Matt Garza, the Cubs showed they were going to make an attempt to compete this season. Hendry and Ricketts believed the 2011 NL Central to be a winnable division for the Cubs. I'm begining to think not.

Rather than a half-assed attempt, I would have much rather seen the Cubs play Soriano in right and at second in hopes to improve his trade value to an AL team in need of a DH with some versatility. And i certainly would have liked to have seen more playing time for Tyler Colvin. Why not play the guy as much as possible and see what production you can get out of him. It worked for Starlin Castro and is working for Darwin Barney.

I understand that the contracts for Fukudome and Soriano are so bad that they are unmoveable. Now, this is partly Hendry's fault and partly the player's fault. At the time of each contract signing, I was pumped and excited thinking about what these two could help bring the Cubs. What I (and Hendry) didn't expect was for Soriano and Fukudome to both be so damn awful at times that it could actual cost the team wins.

Granted, the Cubs organization has made some bad moves over the past few years and alot of fans are calling, and have been some time, for Jim Hendry to be fired. I don't agree. Hendry cannot predict if a player is going to live up to his contract. Everything Hendry has done for the Cubs has been with the purpose of creating a winning team. He put together the back to back division champs a couple of years ago. First time the Cubs went back to back since the 1907 and 1908 seasons. Hendry has commited to winning.

Ricketts, on the other hand, had committed to rebuilding. And yet, he gives Hendry to green light to sign Pena and trade for Garza. Please fellas, agree on one thing. Win now or rebuild. Don't half ass this Pujols/Fielder free agency period.

I'm starting to wish the Reds or Brewers would just run away with the damn division so the Cubs can start working in these younger guys. We need to see what we have left for 2011 that can help ultimatly bring a championship to the north side in the coming years.
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Dustin said...

I think you may be giving Hendry a bit too much credit: my overly simplistic opinion is that he's been given quite a bit of money to throw around. It's always easier to trip and fall into some good seasons when payroll's higher.

I will say this, though. The Garza trade was a good one. They didn't give up a ton to get him. It's a good long-term move, and so is the Pena signing in a roundabout way. I think it was a contract offered with next year in mind, but not completely ignoring the need for a player this year. It's a one-year deal, although it's actually payable over this season and next at $5 million per.

Pena's probably the best one-year rental they were going to get off the free agent pile, and I honestly think it's a good signing no matter what he ends up doing . . . it gives them potential power this year and allows them to go after a big-name stud this offseason.

Anonymous said...

I agree with you on the Pena signing but what I want to say is, what was the point if they weren't going to try to get a couple more good players. It's gonna take more than Garza and Pena. And if they are just playing for next offseason, then why not play some of their younger talent and see what they have as opposed to Fuku, Soriano, A-Ram... And with they way the Pena deal is split with the $5 mil in 11 and $5 mil in 12, then why not try and get someone else too with the money they saved!?

I feel that they should have decided to either go for it this year in a very winnable division or just call it a rebuilding year. Not a "we are gonna half ass rebuild but also sign some cheap, but top level, mlb talent and see what happens year."

Yeah ok true on Hendry. He was given large bags of cash. Maybe it's time to look at the Tampa Rays. They have basically followed the same format that billy beane has been using in Oakland. And they are winning in what ESPN calls "the toughest division in baseball". Maybe Tampa is on to something...

I dont know how to do a "Clay said..." heading so...