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Crosstown Rivalry: White Sox Get to Carlos Zambrano

Zambrano1After taking two out of three games in their first series against the Cubs, the White Sox were able to rattle Carlos Zambrano’s cage enough to give him a mental breakdown and get him taken out after one inning and an altercation with Derek Lee in the dugout.

In the first inning, the White Sox were able to put four runs on the board, mostly thanks to Carlos Quentin’s three run homer that brought in Alex Rios and Paul Konerko.

Zambrano was noticably livid heading into the dugout, the episode ending in being taken into the clubhouse by Lou Piniella and Alan Trammel and being taken out of the game. Read the rest of this entry »

Carlos Silva: Is There Any Chance You Were Expecting This?

99986505_crop_340x234The Chicago Cubs may have made one of the more lopsided trades in recent memory when they shipped troubled player Milton Bradley for supposedly over-paid under-performing Carlos Silva.

Well, he was under-performing.

Coming into this season, a lot of people were expecting nothing out of Silva. He was going to be in the bullpen, possibly the fifth starter until Ted Lilly returned to the rotation. Read the rest of this entry »

MLB Draft Day 2: A Look at the Chicago Cubs’ Picks

101822909_crop_358x243Yesterday, the Chicago Cubs took what, to many, was a big reach when they took Hayden Simpson with their first round pick.

Through two days, the Cubs have taken 18 pitchers, six outfielders, four infielders and two catchers.

So now that Day Two is complete, who has been picked by the Chicago Cubs.

Round 2: Reggie Golden, OF

Golden, hailing from Wetumpka High School, is still deciding whether or not to move to the minor leagues or officially sign with the University of Alabama, where he has a full scholarship.

In 2010, Golden batted .460 with 28 runs, five home runs and 24 RBI. He said he was expecting to go within the first 35 picks. Read the rest of this entry »

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 »

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 »

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 »