Mike's Musings - 4-9-2010
Lets get this party started! The Cubs won a game! Win 2 more, and as Lou Brown said, “It’ll be called a winning streak. It has happened before.” I generally try to be positive, but there’s a lot of things that concern me after 27 innings of the 2010 season. Here are a couple of the ones that stick out.
*Bullpen – First and foremost in my mind. Grabow’s predictably being a pain in the a. I was not a fan of the Cubs resigning him, what with his walk rate going from 3.26 BB/9 in 2007, to 4.38 in 2008, to 4.98 in 2009, as was wonderfully mentioned at this site yesterday. This esclating number, friends, is called a bad trend. Instead of waiting out a market where there were more relievers than guaranteed jobs available, the Cubs decided to strike early and give Grabow 7.5M guaranteed over 2 years. We’re paying him $4.8M next year guys. Yes, I said WE, since WE buy the tickets that are now the highest priced on average in Major League Baseball. But I digress. Grabow’s going to give me ulcers all year. And though he got the job done last night, I have a feeling we’re gonna be on a Randy Myers-like ride with Carlos Marmol this year. He’s gonna drive you crazy with his high-wire act. Be ready for it. As I said in the pre-season roundtable, I don’t think he gets 30 saves, because I believe he’ll pitch himself out of the role. Who’s going to be closing at the end of the year? It won’t be Suckmardzija, but maybe….
*Andrew Cashner – Easily my favorite Cubs prospect, Cashner made his debut for AA Tennessee last night. He struck out the first 7 hitters he faced last night, and had 10 through the first 4 innings. Think about that for a second. 10K’s, 4 innings. Wow. Cashner ran into trouble in the 5th, walking a couple and allowing a 3-run homer, but I’m not concerned about that. Why? Because Andrew Cashner is a reliever. The Cubs continue to trot him out there as a starter, because hey, starters are typically worth more than relievers. I just wish they’d end this experiment with Cash starting games. Put him in the pen pronto, send him to Iowa, watch the magnificent results, and let’s get him to Chicago as soon as possible. There’s no way he’s not amongst our 7 best relievers right now. This situation reminds me some of Daniel Bard of the Red Sox. Both were first round pick out of a prestigious college program (Bard – 1st round out of UNC in ’06, Cashner – 1st round out of TCU in ’08). Bard struggled mightily with his control in the minors, was moved to a relief duties, and his career took off. Now he’s throwing 98 MPH for the Sox in the 8th inning. Cashner’s velocity in college was in the 96-98 MPH range when he was in a relief role, there’s no reason to believe it couldn’t get back there. Please put him back there. Our pen could use the help.
Let’s try not to get to upset about the offense yet. Granted, the Cubs haven’t scored many runs outside of the long ball, but it’s only 3 games. Also, let’s try not to annoint Tyler Colvin as the 2nd coming. Yes, that HR he hit last night was awesome. But pace yourselves Cubs fans. I’m as big of a Colvin fan as anyone, but it’s only 3 games in. Finally, who was that sexy beast that predicted 25 homers for Marlon Byrd in the “biggest surprise” question during the preseason roundtable? Only 23 away. Cincy’s up next – we’ve played well there of late. Let’s get 2 of 3 there and come home for what should be a gorgeous Opening Day Monday against the Brew Crew.
-MW<?xml:namespace prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:office" />