Mailbag Monday

What’s the perfect scenario for the Cubs and Jeff Samardzija at this point? Can it drag out much longer? – Adam, Chicago, IL

Happy you asked. I recently discussed this in a blog post, and though I definitely expressed Samardzija’s asking price should remain high, I didn’t quite put an emphasis on when or if he should go. Samardzija is great. He’s done great things for the Cubs with his ERA being 2 in MLB, but he still remains winless. It’s time for him to go. And he needs to go now, rather than wait until the non-waiver trade deadline. In the midst of rebuilding, people are willing to pay a hefty amount for the righty. NY Yankees have shown some interest, in particular. He has a potential 50-plus starts for the remainder of the year. What if he goes through a rough stretch on the mound? If there is a time to seize upon the needs for the Cubs, it is now.

Do you think the Cubs will unload Samardzija for top prospects? Where do you think he could wind up? – Cody Voga, Blake St Bombers Blog

Interestingly enough, my favorite Rockies blogger, I wouldn’t mind seeing Jeff Samardzija go to the Rockies. He would do well in Coors field, maybe even give them a good run for the playoffs. I like Jon Gray. He is a great pitching prospect. I also really like Corey Dickerson. He has shown a great deal of potential with his bat. They would fit nicely into our rebuilding program in Chicago. Eddie Butler is also looking to be a #2 big league starting pitcher too. I think the asking price should remain high, since trading him isn’t completely essential, but I would like to see what other prospects the Cubs could get for him.

How much do the p.r. gaffes like the mural mistake affect the Cubs in the long term? – Adam, Chicago, IL

Oof. The mural mistake. Another topic recently discussed on the blog. Some of the biggest news surrounding the Cubs has been the 100 year celebration of Wrigley, and the organization even managed to mess that up. To add, it was a picture that actually honored an appearance by Charles Lindburgh at the stadium of our Crosstown rivals. Certainly, this P.R. mistake was embarrassing. However, I think our record is the most embarrassing. Mistakes like these definitely fuel the fire for more jokes, but as for affecting on-field performance… I think that is little.

Cubs “rebuild” has been going on for 3 years, when should we expect a turnaround and when should fans start to demand more? -Courtney Terleki, Black Ice: Road to the Stanley Cup Blog

There’s always next year, right? Well the Cubs have certainly been saying this for many years, and as hard as it may be, they will be saying it again this season. However, most have hung on this long and a positive turn around is coming soon.

Cubs’ biggest strength: They are young. Young position players like Anthony Rizzo and Starlin Castro are the core of the future turn around.

Cubs’ biggest weakness: They are young. Big-league ready talent is just not quite there. Some of the starting lineup would belong on the bench for most teams. Experience isn’t on the Cubs’ side, but experience can be earned.

Theo Epstein and Jed Hoyer have created one of the best farm systems in MLB. Javier Baez and Arismendy Alcantara will be excellent additions to the team. I’m predicting June for Baez, maybe July for Alcantara. In addition to those prospects,  rookies like Mike Olt and Junior Lake becoming standout players for the Cubs, it is clear the rebuild is making progressive steps.

So even though we may have to wait another year for a winning season, it is definitely coming. Hang in there for 2015, Cubs fans!



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