Filed:January 2nd, 2009
Al Yellon/Bleed Cubbie Blue
I still prefer the Fall Classic.
Not even a couple of seasons as an Andy Frain usher in the old Chicago Stadium was enough to turn me into a fan. It just never took.
But as a baseball-crazed fan dreaming fondly of warmer times, and counting the days to Spring Training, it was nice to see a vibrant, populated Wrigley Field. I appreciated seeing a few fan shots of Wrigley in the winter, so I figured that you might too.
That said, this is as good a time as any to start taking a look around the league to see the progression of things. Baseball is almost here again, after all. And while the free agent signings haven't advanced along as far as we might have hoped, we're certainly far enough into the off-season to get a feel about who is serious about winning in 2009.
As such, welcome to the Power Rankings, a new piece that we'll be featuring here at Cubbie Nation. Although you should expect from here till Opening Day to see it once or twice a month, it's slotted as a weekly article from then on out.
Enjoy the piece, and for that matter the rest of your holiday weekend. And drop me a note when the champagne wears off, and let me know what you think.
Sabathia? Check. Burnett? Check? Teixeira? Check. The only thing left to do is pluck Ramirez to play left, and the off-season is complete.
Apparently, I’m one the five people in the country who like the Ibanez-for- Burrell swap. The Cubs have a semi-vote of no confidence right now, and the Mets haven’t made moves yet. They’ll stay at this spot for awhile.
You know what I love more than their cash, and minor-league stockpile? The ability to take fliers on players like Brad Penny, and usually be richly rewarded. Shame about Teixeira though.
Until I see a potent bat added to that lineup, they’re at number four; and likely dropping.
Ibanez. Dunn. Bradley. Abreu. Yadda, yadda, yadda. Here’s an idea. If you can’t get Abreu in the 3/30 neighborhood, keep your powder dry till the trading deadline. Scoring runs was never the problem, even with a absentee Kosuke Fukudome.
Another vote of no-confidence. Everything is there, but there’s just something not quite right with this team.
Sticking Kelly Johnson in left field wouldn’t be the end of the world, but Abreu looks like just what this team needs.
What can I say? They seem to want to spend some money, and they’ve got good talent. A real darkhorse out west.
Something that resembles a real bullpen with Kerry Wood on-board, and a good crop of talent still. I’m high on them, especially now that DeRosa is there too.
If GM Omar Minaya can find someone to take Luis Castillo, I’ll consider it one of the greatest moves ever made by a front office. In the meantime, a starting pitcher sighting would go a long way toward a big move up the rankings. Grabbing one of the left field bats would get you in the top five.
|I like where Kenny Williams is taking that team. Check back in a few seasons and they could be world beaters. But with the Butt Brothers -- Dye, Konerko, and Thome -- on the roster, they won't execute their style well enough to be serious in 2009.|
Done nothing this off-season so far, but they’re the Twins. They’ll be at least a .500 team on execution alone.
Love that pitching. The Randy Johnson signing might be the move of the off-season. They are the NL West favorite.
All the pitching is heading for the door. They were a .500 team before Manny with it, and look go back or worse in 2009 without.
|Manager Tony LaRussa will have them ready to play, and they'll find starting pitching; somewhere.|
Losing Orlando Hudson and the Johnson will hurt, but it’s another year of .500 ball keeping you in contention out in the NL West.
|It’s a major league team J.P., not the local Jewel. Spend some money already.|
I think Mike Jacobs will flourish, and Coco Crisp moving David DeJesus out of center will help. With that pitching staff, it’s going to be a good year in KC.
You still can’t play defense, and your top two pitchers are gone. It’s hard to be high on Milwaukee right now.
I’ll feel better about them if they can move Jeremy Hermida for pitching.
I was really prepared to but them into the top 15. Then they signed Willy Taveras to a two-year deal. It’s the same old Dusty.
Some pitching not named Hawkins would help.
Another offseason passing without addressing the 800-pound gorilla in the room – no pitching.
I’ve no idea what they’re doing up there. And if it was anyone but Dombrowski, they’d be looking for a new GM too after giving Dontrelle Willis a big extension AND losing Jurrgens in the Renteria debacle.
Looking at Adam Dunn?? Really?? They collect LF/1B like Dusty Baker collected second baseman. Still, starter John Lannan is a comer, and I don’t see anyone in the East being a world beater.
I’m still hoping that they flip Street for something more useful.
Did you really give reality TV stars jobs? Only in Pittsburgh.
Jeremy Guthrie, and…??? Matt Albers, maybe? You know, if owner Peter Angelos really wanted to spend 150 million or so this off-season, he could have gotten at least two very good pitcher this off-season; and still had money to burn.
No movement, nor should there be. The year is a wash. Give the kids a look, and start prepping for the draft.
It won’t be Memorial Day till the fans are in full-fledged revolt.