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  1. #1
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    My Spring Training Thoughts on the Cubs

    Just some thoughts before things play out in ST:

    Position players (probable starters listed first)

    1B: Lee, Hoffpauier Lee's offensive numbers have not been spectacular lately and sounds like Bradley may bat 3rd in the lineup so this probably moves Lee down to the 5th or 6th spot now. Hoffpauier takes Daryle Ward's spot as the left handed power hitter off the bench.
    2B: Fontenot, Miles Sad to see DeRo go but I think between these 2 guys defensively it's probably an upgrade and the left handed bats will definitely help even out the right handed dominant lineup. Probably a platoon position until 1 of them distances themselves as the best option
    3B: Ramirez, Miles A-Ram clearly the best bat on the team and biggest clutch hitter. Don't have DeRo to give him a break this year though if he gets hurt or needs a rest.
    SS: Theriot, Miles Hopefully Lou gives Theriot a shot to leadoff and puts Soriano in the 5 spot where he can still swing away and have more of an impact when he hits his homers. Miles is a solid guy to back up the position and give Theriot some more rest this year while not losing production from the position when he's sitting out.
    OF: Soriano, Johnson, Bradley. Bench: Fukudome, Gathright CF is a big question because Johnson is not an everyday player and Fukudome needs to hit better to justify even being on the roster. I would not be shocked that Fukudome gets sent to the minors if he continues to struggle at the plate. Here's to hoping Bradley can stay healthy enough to play a full season in RF because he's a great addition with his bat. Gathright essentially takes Pie's spot as pinch runner and late defensive replacement.
    C: Soto, Bako/Hill. Soto is a stud and rising star at his position, not much to be said there. Smart money says Bako beats out Hill for the backup C.

    Rotation:
    Zambrano, Dempster, Lilly, Harden, Marshall The key is Harden staying healthy as this makes the top 4 possibly the best in baseball. I think Marshall gets the edge as 5th starter right now but Heilman and Samardzija will get a look in ST here and Gaudin has starter experience as well.

    Bullpen: Heilman, Gaudin, Samardzija, Cotts, Gregg, Vizcaino, Marmol. This area worries me because Cotts is not a great lefty and had struggles late, Heilman can be good but has had some struggles last year, Vizcaino is 34 and coming off a bad year in Colorado, Gaudin and Gaudin had problems staying healthy. Marmol will likely win the closer job leaving Gregg and Samardjiza as solid setup men.

    Guys in spring training with a shot to make the roster: Pitchers:Jose Ascanio, Kevin Hart, Mike Stanton, Angel Guzman, Ken Kadokura. Stanton could find a way on with a solid ST as a 2nd lefty in the pen. Ascanio, Guzman, and Hart have all had stints and have shown they have the potential, and Kadokura is a wild card from Japan that would have to really impress to make the opening day roster I think.
    Position players: Sam Fuld and So Taguchi. I already mentioned Koyie Hill, Fuld and Taguchi could sneak in with a good ST and if the Cubs are not happy with Fukudome's bat. Fuld can play CF and Taguchi has been a serviceable veteran with a good glove and a career .279 average. I have a hard time seeing any infield position players making a push to take a roster spot away right now. Ideally I'd love to see a trade for a proven CF and just secure that spot with an every day player.

    My ideal Lineup:

    1. Theriot SS (R)
    2. Johnson CF (R)
    3. Bradley RF (S)
    4. Ramirez 3B (R)
    5. Soriano LF (R)
    6. Lee 1B (R)
    7. Soto C (R)
    8. Fontenot 2B (L)
    9. P

    When Miles (S) is starting at 2B you can put him at 2 and Johnson/Fukudome (L) at 8. In fact just put Fukudome at 8 whenever he is in the lineup. It's time to put an end to Soriano leading off and the 5 hole still allows him to swing away and possibly lead off some innings while having that power bat in the middle of the order where he can hit more runs in.

    Rotation:
    1. Zambrano
    2. Dempster
    3. Lilly
    4. Harden
    5. Marshall

    I think you have to split the lefties and Harden's injury history still worries me so while he has #1 or 2 stuff when healthy I put him at 4 because those top 3 guys are consistent and usually healthy.

    Will be interesting to see how things shape up!


    Go Cubs Go!

  2. #2
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    Re: My Spring Training Thoughts on the Cubs

    My thoughts on the Cubs: will be fast out of the blocks again only to fade to the Cards in Aug as Puhols outhits Lee again. Two or three pitchers go down as their arms do not last the season. Felix Pye is brought back by magic through trades to resurrect a hole in the defense. We see past highlights of the what if seasons on WGN in Sep.


    Let my Fred's Posse Ride: Georges, Naz, Hogue, Bryce, Nader, Monte, Matt, and McKay.

  3. #3
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    Re: My Spring Training Thoughts on the Cubs

    I don't know why Cards fans think they have to compare Lee and Pujols. Pujols is one of the best hitters in all of baseball so it's not even a debate to me. I'll concede that. If you want to compare rosters though Cubs have the edge in a lot of spots. As a Cards fan I'd be more worried about Houston and Milwaukee finishing ahead of me right now than beating the Cubs out for 1st.

    Edges with winner in bold:
    1B: Lee vs Pujols
    2B: Fontenot/Miles vs Thurston/Ryan
    3B: Ramirez vs Glaus
    SS: Theriot vs Greene/Ryan
    C: Soto vs Molina (this one is close but Soto's superior bat makes up for what Molina has on him defensively
    OF: Soriano, Johnson, Bradley vs Ludwick, Shumaker, Ankiel (close but Soriano and Bradley's offense is what puts the Cubs group over the top.

    Rotation:
    Zambrano, Dempster, Lilly, Harden, Marshall vs Wainright, Piniero, Lohse, Wellemeyer, Thompson (not even close here. I'll give Duncan the upper hand on Rothschild as the better pitching coach because he gets career years out of career journeymen but Cardinals rotation is not going to strike fear into anyone. Who knows if Carpenter is ever himself again either.)
    Bullpen: tossup. I think this is the area of biggest concerns for both teams but Cubs do have a little more veteran presence here.

    Manager: Pinella vs LaRussa Both have world series rings but LaRussa seems to get more out of less than Lou has lately.


    Go Cubs Go!

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    Re: My Spring Training Thoughts on the Cubs

    Looks good on paper as it does every year for the Cubs. But we all know what happens. June Swoon.

    Go Cards!!!



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    Re: My Spring Training Thoughts on the Cubs

    Quote Originally Posted by FirNaTine View Post
    Looks good on paper as it does every year for the Cubs. But we all know what happens. June Swoon.

    Go Cards!!!
    at least we win the division and make the playoffs!


    "Winning isn't everything, it's the only thing."

  6. #6
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    Re: My Spring Training Thoughts on the Cubs

    Lee has been on my fantasy team twice in last two years and he power flames out in Aug. I do not think he can sustain power though a whole season. Puhols is worth two players batting.


    Let my Fred's Posse Ride: Georges, Naz, Hogue, Bryce, Nader, Monte, Matt, and McKay.

  7. #7
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    Re: My Spring Training Thoughts on the Cubs

    Quote Originally Posted by Wesley View Post
    Lee has been on my fantasy team twice in last two years and he power flames out in Aug. I do not think he can sustain power though a whole season. Puhols is worth two players batting.
    Again, I completely agree with you here but there is more than 1 or 2 players on a team... Lee has never been the same hitter since the wrist injury a couple years ago. I think Hoffpauier would probably hit for more power than Lee if he played a full season but the defense Lee brings at 1B would be sorely missed because Hoff is not very good with the glove. Hoff one of those guys that would probably fit in well in the AL as a DH.


    Go Cubs Go!

  8. #8
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    Re: My Spring Training Thoughts on the Cubs

    No way Soriano bats 5th IMO.

    Also, I think it was a huge mistake to get rid of DeRosa.

    Lastly, Harden will blow his arm out surely.



  9. #9
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    Re: My Spring Training Thoughts on the Cubs

    Quote Originally Posted by FirNaTine View Post
    Looks good on paper as it does every year for the Cubs. But we all know what happens. June Swoon.

    Go Cards!!!
    Amen



  10. #10
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    Re: My Spring Training Thoughts on the Cubs

    Quote Originally Posted by 06Panther View Post
    No way Soriano bats 5th IMO.

    Also, I think it was a huge mistake to get rid of DeRosa.

    Lastly, Harden will blow his arm out surely.
    1. as long as he doesnt lead off... dude cant run no mo.

    2. agreed. he really loved the cubs, and it sucks that we had to get rid of him AND we never got the peavy deal done anyway.

    3. I surely hope not, but another pitcher is needed because history indicates that thisll prolly be the case.



  11. #11
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    Re: My Spring Training Thoughts on the Cubs

    Quote Originally Posted by 06Panther View Post
    No way Soriano bats 5th IMO.

    Also, I think it was a huge mistake to get rid of DeRosa.

    Lastly, Harden will blow his arm out surely.
    I don't think he will either but that is probably where he belongs. Where would you put him besides leadoff? He's not a #2 hitter, A-Ram is solid at #4 and Soriano doesn't hit worth a darn in the #3 hole. Lee has to move out of the #3 hole too with his tendency to hit into double plays lately and decline in power.


    Go Cubs Go!

  12. #12
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    Re: My Spring Training Thoughts on the Cubs

    Who will be the second utility infielder for the Cubs? Are they going to let some young guys battle for that job in spring training?



  13. #13
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    Re: My Spring Training Thoughts on the Cubs

    fontenot is going to play some 3rd in spring ball FYI


    ALL IN

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    Re: My Spring Training Thoughts on the Cubs

    Quote Originally Posted by FirNaTine View Post
    Looks good on paper as it does every year for the Cubs. But we all know what happens. June Swoon.

    Go Cards!!!
    We save our swoon for October these days!!! We've grown in that regard!


    Since we are an elite team now, let's go get that One Cyclone Moment.
    Make this one for the ages!




    http://rememberingdoria.wordpress.com/

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    Re: My Spring Training Thoughts on the Cubs

    Against RH starters (with 2008 OPS)
    1. Fontenot (.911)
    2. Bradley (1.139)
    3. Ramirez (.954)
    4. Soto (.852)
    5. Lee (.785)
    6. Soriano (.779)
    7. Fukudome (.742)
    8. Theriot (.734)

    Against LH starters (with 2008 OPS)
    1. Soriano (1.114)
    2. Johnson (.848)
    3. Lee (.948)
    4. Bradley (.929)
    5. Soto (.915)
    6. Ramirez (.721)
    7. Theriot (.778)
    8. Fontenot (.893)



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