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Cubs Still Trying to Deal Milton Bradley & Add Center Fielder

Posted on 15 December 2009 by Lou

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While other teams are wheeling and dealing this winter, GM Jim Hendry and the Chicago Cubs are stuck in the mud.  Hendry is still trying to make a Milton Bradley for Pat Burrell deal happen with the Tampa Bay Rays.  Each of Bradley and Burrell are owed $9 million during the 2010 MLB campaign.  But Bradley is still owed $11 million in 2011 and the Rays want the Cubs to pick up some of that tab for making a dumb contract with Bradley.  The deal still could happen, but it will all depend upon what the Ricketts Family is willing to eat for the disgruntled outfielder.  If the deal does go through, then Hendry and the Cubs would likely try to move Burrell somewhere else, and would presumably have to eat a portion of the $9 million owed to Burrell for this season.

Assuming of all this happens, Hendry and the Cubs still need to find a starting center fielder.  The New York Yankees already traded for Curtis Granderson from the Detroit Tigers.  The Boston Red Sox beat Hendry and the Cubs to the punch on free agent Mike Cameron, signing him to a 2-year $15.5 million deal (seems a bit much for a 37-year old center fielder to play left field).  There are still a few options out there.  Tops on the list is Marlon Byrd from the Texas Rangers.  Byrd is 32 and has flourished under hitting coach Rudy Jarmillo who is now the Cubs hitting coach.  Byrd is averaging a .295 batting average in his last 3 seasons in Texas, but has plenty of suitors competing for his services.  If it gets into a bidding war, the Cubs will likely lose out on the outfielder.  After Byrd, there are less attractive options like Rick Ankiel and Scott Podsednik.  If the Cubs don’t get Byrd, I would rather have them try to re-sign Reed Johnson instead of taking a shot on Ankiel or Podsednik.

Guess we’ll see what happens.  It is definitely frustrating watching all of these top notch teams like the Yankees, Red Sox and Phillies continue to improve while the Cubs sit idly by hoping that someone pecks them on a cheek and gives them a bone.  It is pretty pathetic.  The Ricketts Family and Manager Lou Pinella must be seething at the position Hendry has left the Cubs in this off-season and the off-season for the next couple of years with the Bad Soriano, Fukudome and Bradley contracts still crushing the books…

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Cubs Still Trying to Deal Milton Bradley

Posted on 08 December 2009 by Lou

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Day 1 has come and gone in MLB’s Winter Meetings and Milton Bradley is still a Cub.  GM Jim Hendry has had several discussions with teams regarding moving Bradley, but that is all it has been thus far.  Once some of the other signings/trades take place, then teams might be ready to move on with an acquisition of Bradley.

Two possible scenarios include a trade with the Tampa Bay Rays for outfielder Pat Burrell.  Burrell did not play well in his only year in Tampa and he is owed around $9 million in 2010.  That means the Cubs will likely have to eat a good chunk of the remaining $11 million owed to Bradley in 2011.

The other scenario involves the New York Mets.  The Mets are looking to move 2nd baseman Luis Castillo who is owed $12 million over the next 2 seasons.  It’s unclear if the Mets would want the Cubs to pick up some of Bradley’s salary in that trade.

We’ll keep you posted as soon as we hear anything.  It is truly unlikely that the Cubs bring Bradley back, so expect a trade to happen within the next couple of weeks.  Even if the Cubs have to eat some of Bradley’s salary to get the deal done, it will be a good move in the long run for the frustrating Cubs.

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