Playing Good Idea/Bad Idea with the Cubs Offseason

chicagocubs03It’s really hard for me in the midst of a brutal Chicago Bears season to take a step back and relive a brutal Cubs season. What a disappointment 2009 was for the Chicago Cubs. So much anticipation, so few results.

I posted my thoughts on Derek Lee and his contributions to the Cubs season in my last post and I can not reiterate enough what a valuable player he was during a rough year. Now on my return trip to the Baseball Reflections landscape I wanted to play a little game I call: Good Idea / Bad Idea. The game is simple, and unfortunately for you, I am the only one who can play until the comments section. I’ll just jump right in, I think you’ll get the hang of it pretty quick.

Good Idea: Make a move for Curtis Granderson

What an entrance Tom Ricketts could make if he were able to pull a deal off for a top of the lineup guy with pop in his bat and speed on the bases. Granderson is just 28 years old and the Tigers are in some financial distress, the only question is if the Cubs will be willing to part with or if they even have the prospects needed to make a deal like this. You can forget a Milton Bradley to Detroit scenario, it’s not happening. So it would be up to Hendry to decide if he is willing to part with players like Micah Hoffpauir, Jake Fox or even Starlin Castro (not likely). Another nugget: Granderson is from Lynwood.

Bad Idea: Bringing Back Milton

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I would hope that this one is a no brainer. Milton, while not the only problem in Chicago last season, was one of the biggest. Not only did he disappoint on the field, but apparently he was loathed in the clubhouse by most.

One of the things the Cubs of 2008 had was chemistry. All that went out the door when Uncle Milty came to town. I heard a recent report that players actually applauded when informed of his suspension from the team. The Cubs would be wise to do whatever it takes to rid themselves of this guy, and I think they will.

Good Idea: Move Ryan Theriot to second base

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I like Ryan, he’s scrappy (do we ever say that about non-white players, I suppose that’s another article), but the guy needs to go over to second base. There are two good reasons for this: 1) he does not have the range or the arm to play short the way the Cubs need him to, though D. Lee does make a lot of infielders look better. 2) the door would then be open for a real shortstop, maybe even a veteran who they could use for one season.

Who am I thinking of? Well there are two names that come to mind, Miguel Tejada and Marco Scutaro. Scutaro had a career year in 2009, batting .282 with 12 HRs and 60 RBI. Tejada, who is on the downside of his career, and who is a Cubs nemesis, is 35 but hit .315 with 12 HRs and drove in 86. I would like to see either playing in a Cubs uniform, but I won’t hold my breath.

Bad Idea: Make Kosuke Fukudome your CF

Kosuke Fukudome, of the Chicago Cubs, at bat a...
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I don’t think the Cubs have any intention of doing this, but they need to find a switch hitting or left handed OF to play center to avoid this. I have already made my case for Granderson in CF, but that may not be a possibility. Another player that Hendry liked in years past was Marlon Byrd. Byrd was another career year guy in 2008. His 20 HRs and 89 RBI were both career highs, and with Rudy Jaramillo now on the Cubs bench, this could be the answer in CF. He doesn’t answer the lefty concern, but a move for him would put Fukudome back in right, the place where he belongs.

Good Idea: Let Rich Harden and Reed Johnson go

Two more players that I really like. Unfortunately Rich is a constant health concern and his inability to go deep in games really hurt the Cubs in 2009. His talent level is obviously there but he leaves too big of a question mark in the rotation.

Reed Johnson is so white and grindy, and if he had been healthy he might have fit well in the Cubs plans for ’09. For 2010 the Cubs must move on and the asking price for Johnson might be too high for what would most likely be a platoon role in CF.

Bad Idea: Staring directly in to the face of Sammy Sosa

Seriously? What is the deal with that? I was worried that if I looked at that picture too long I was going to lose my sight.

So those are some thoughts on the Cubs for late November. I am sure there are others and hopefully you will share your thoughts.

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