Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Excerpt: "Third Third Previews, Part I"

"Chicago Cubs (24): Contrast the Mets with the Cubs, who flipped Scott Hairston and Scott Feldman for whatever they could get, and gouged a good price for Matt Garza from a market that gave them an upper hand. They reportedly even dangled their #1 starter, Jeff Samardzija, which reflects a recognition that his being a good pitcher in 2013 may mean more to the 2015 Cubs in trade than in anything else. The Cubs are the first team in their market and the Mets the second, but the Cubs aren't playing in a new park and don't own their own RSN; despite this, I'd take their future over that of the Mets, and it's not all that close. I'm certain that when the Cubs are ready to contend, Tom Ricketts will sign off on the big-ticket items they'll need to get over the top. I have no reason to believe the Wilpons will do the same.

"Even post-deadline, the Cubs can be competitive behind Samardzija, Travis Wood and Edwin Jackson, who's pitched better than his ERA. The young players who were supposed to make the Cubs better haven't really done so this year, as Starlin Castro, Anthony Rizzo and Wellington Castillo have all been various shades of disappointing. How those three play these next two months is maybe the biggest story around this team.

"There's a very real chance that Theo Epstein is going to, over a period of 20 years, be the GM of a World-Series-winning Red Sox team and the President of a World Series-winning Cubs team. Once you do that, don't you have to run for president? At least, you'd have to take a shot at fixing the Cleveland Browns, no?"