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MLB Draft Day: Cubs Take Hayden Simpson With First Pick

101864829_crop_340x234The Chicago Cubs have a history of reaching for draft picks in the first round. They did so again this season when they took Hayden Simpson, expected to be a second to fifth round pick, with the 16th pick of the first round.

Hayden went 13-1 in 15 starts for the South Arkansas Muleriders during his junior season. He also had a 1.81 ERA and struck out 131 batters compared to just 35 walks in 99 and a third innings.

Cubs scouting director Tim Wilken compared Simpson to major league stars Tim Lincecum and Roy Oswalt, which is big praise for D-ll pitcher. Read the rest of this entry »

How Derek Lee and Aramis Ramirez Are Holding the Cubs Back

98479328_croppedWhile watching the Cubs today, you got a great view of just how bad the Cubs supposed “stars” are while also seeing how the less impressive players have stepped up trying to fix the situation.

The Cubs entered their game against the Philadelphia Phillies with four straight wins and hoping to sweep a second straight two-game series after taking the first game last night in convincing fashion.

This game was much closer, and was included multi-hit games by both historically-underwhelming Mike Fontenot and rookie Starlin Castro.

In the ninth inning, the Cubs were down just one run and going up against former crosstown rival Jose Contreras and started off the inning with a bang. Read the rest of this entry »

Cubbies Finally on A Roll And Zambrano Back to the Rotation

Rockies Cubs BaseballLast night, Carlos Silva got another quality start, pitching six innings and allowing two runs to drop his ERA to 3.35 and improve to 5-0 on the season.

On a night when we learned that Carlos Zambrano will be returning to the starting rotation shortly, a different Carlos was able to steal the show by pitching six scoreless innings before allowing a two-run home run without recording an out in the seventh and being taken out.

After going 2-9 in an 11 game stretch, the Cubs have been able to pull off three strait wins after taking the finale against the division rival Pittsburgh Pirates and sweeping a two game series against the Colorado Rockies. Read the rest of this entry »

Carlos Silva: Comeback Player of the Year?

99055020.jpg.13158_croppedhen the Cubs traded Milton Bradley to the Seattle Mariners, they expected to get nothing more than a really expensive paperweight in return, and as far as they knew, Carlos Silva was just that.

After all, Silva consistently pitches horribly, and hasn’t had a good season since 2005 when he went 9-8 with a 3.44 ERA. That’s not exactly an All Star season, but it’s the best season he’s ever had.

Well, it was the best season he’s ever had, until this season. Read the rest of this entry »

Who Can I Blame For The Season So Far?

97635769JB032_Chicago_Cubs_One week ago the Cubs were 13-13, coming off of a sweep of the Arizona Diamondbacks and looked to be back on track to get the most out of their team this season.

All was well in Wrigleyville.

Fast-forward to present day and the Cubs are 14-20 and coming off of being swept by the Pittsburgh Pirates (14-19) and about to suffer the same fate against the Florida Marlins (16-17) pending tomorrow’s matinee as the Cubs try to stop their four game slide.

So one big question continues to pop up in my mind, as I always love to play the blame game. That question is… Read the rest of this entry »

Sorry About the Lack of Posts

For the next month or so, posts are going to be rare, as I have classes until May 6th. After that, I will be able to write more often and will probably have a post a day, which means I will be doing a lot of work with my sports work.

I am also thinking about starting up a YouTube channel which will consist of me making a few videos a week about sports in a vlog format. I will be following a similar format to Ray William Johnson, only instead of talking about YouTube videos and making jokes, I will be talking about sports and making bad jokes.

As for my thoughts on the first few days of Cubbie baseball, we need a bullpen, badly. Really badly. Really really badly.

I have some stuff tomorrow but hopefully tomorrow or Wednesday I will have something substantial up for you.

I’m Joe W.

News and Notes From Spring Training

chi_u_lilly_576Sorry for the three-day delay with posts, there is just very little going on. With that in mind, I will try to squeeze out whatever stories are happening and give you some updates on the Cubs.

Here are a few stories that have happened over the past few days.

Aramis Ramirez returns to the diamond

Ramirez has missed some time this spring because of a sore right tricep, but he returned on Tuesday against the Royals as a DH and went 2-3 with an RBI. He hasn’t played since March 13th, but he looked like he hadn’t missed any time in his three at bats. Read the rest of this entry »

Cubs Shortstops Stepping Up Big

mlb_g_theriot11_576Although 19-year-old prospect was sent to the minors yesterday, Starlin Castro has spent his Spring Training turning heads and creating quite a controversy as to whether or not the Cubs should give the young prospect a shot in the minors.

Although Castro turns 20 in just a few days, he has been playing like a veteran, batting near .500 and striking out just once in 26 at bats before being sent down. He caused Lou Piniella to re-evaluate whether or not he should give the youngster a shot.

“Castro had a phenomenal spring for a young player,” Piniella said. “Nineteen years old, to come in here and look like a veteran and swing the bat … he showed his athleticism. He came in here highly touted and left here even more touted.” Read the rest of this entry »

Is Carlos Silva Turning His Career Around in Chicago?

Rangers Cubs Spring BaseballYesterday, Cubs newly acquired pitcher Carlos Silva pitched in his third outing of Spring Training, and he continued his progression as he works on his retooled delivery. After a horrific start in his first Spring Training appearance, Silva has been doing better and better with each outing.

In his first start of the spring, Silva pitched horribly, giving up six runs on seven hits against the rival Chicago White Sox all in just two innings of work. The bad start was expected by those who looked into Silva’s history with the Mariners and Twins.

However, in his two starts since he has pitched seven scoreless innings, got the win on both occasions, and has done a great job with his pitches as he makes up for his bad first start. He’s allowed six hits and one walk over the two appearances, giving him a very low WHIP of 1.00 in those two performances, and he lowered his ERA from 27.00 to 6.00. Read the rest of this entry »

Position Breakdown: Outfield

mlb_a_byrd12_576The Cubs outfield has been extremely expensive over the past couple of years, and they have failed to get their money’s worth, as they sign free agent after free agent to big contracts without much, if any, improvement.

Although getting rid of Milton Bradley was a great move and took money off the payroll, the Cubs still have a lot of money tied up in two out of the three outfield spots, and they need to start seeing some production from those corner outfielders.

They did make a move to bring in a centerfielder coming off of a career year, and they will need him to produce if they want to be competitive. But he isn’t the only guy that they have their hopes high on, with another free agent outfielder who will back up two out of the three outfield spots and battle for playing time.

Here is a look at the outfield:

LF: Alfonso Soriano
CF: Marlon Byrd
RF: Kosuke Fukudome Read the rest of this entry »