It’s Dec. 1, so where’s all the action been? It’s one of the slowest-developing baseball off-seasons I can remember covering. Anyway, here’s a small bit of news to get things started: I expect the Cubs to tender contracts to all of their players by Thursday’s deadline to do so.
That means arb-eligible guys Tom Gorzelanny, Jeff Baker, Koyie Hill, Sean Marshall, Geovany Soto and Carlos Marmol will be offered contracts. The only questions were the first three players on that list, but you can put them down as back in the fold. GM Jim Hendry likely will try to work out deals soon for Gorzelanny, Baker and Hill to avoid arbitration. Marshall and Marmol will be in line for nice raises, as will Soto after a nice bounce-back year. We’ll see if the Cubs go to hearings on either.
Here are the salary figures from this past season:
Marmol: $2.125 million
If either Baker or Hill had shown any signs of wanting what the Cubs felt was out of line, they’d be non-tender candidates. As of today, Hendry feels he can reach reasonable deals with both.
The Cubs went the better part of two decades without an arb hearing until they beat Ryan Theriot last February. Theriot got $2.6 million instead of the $3.4 million he had sought. He was about 48 hours from being non-tendered by the Dodgers, who sent him Tuesday to the Cardinals for pitcher Blake Hawksworth. The Cubs didn’t have anything to say about Theriot’s comments to a St. Louis radio station.
In an interview with KFNS, Theriot said he was “finally on the right side of the Cubs-Cardinals rivalry.”
He also said that talk at LSU, where he played college ball, always was about a national championship. However, he said such talk was “almost an afterthought” in pro ball. The Cubs drafted, developed and brought Theriot to the big leagues before trading him to the Dodgers on July 31 so you know to whom he was referring. “It was like an unattainable goal,” Theriot told the station. “And now, being here with an organization like this, it's right there for the taking."
Actually, John McDonough talked non-stop about winning the World Series once he took over as team president in the fall of 2006. The Cubs never did attain that goal, but they spent themselves silly try to get it.
Seems a bit lacking in class for Theriot to be saying this kind of stuff. And let’s not forget the Cincinnati Reds are the defending division champions. And just to throw out a rhetorical question: Could you have seen former Cards GM Walt Jocketty, now GM of the Reds, making this trade when Theriot could have been had much more cheaply as a free agent come tomorrow? But it will be fun to see The Riot again once the season starts and he’s at short for Tony and the Cards.