The Cubs and Big Z are close to a deal, Hendry says. Don't you feel better already?
Also, Glendon Rusch stopped by to visit his former teammates. Glendon didn't quite cover himself in glory at the end of his tenure with us. But I'm sure he's a fine person, and I'd actually be interested to hear how his health is these days. Also, does Glendon live in Vegas? I was under the impression that flying isn't particularly good for his condition.
Ryan Theriot lead the team in errors this spring. Of course, I don't think he played any games at shortstop, which is his actual position. And he did play a few games at third base and in the outfield, where he has limited experience at best. (As an outfielder, he's okay. As a third baseman... there's a reason that DeRosa is the backup there now.) Of course, part of this has to do with why the error is not the best defensive metric -- you have to get to the ball before you can committ an error with it, which artificially inflates Cliff Floyd's competancy out there.
ESPN breaks down the Cubs tinker-toy style. Probably not a lot you don't already know -- they peg Theriot as a fantasy sleeper, and say Gallagher and Pie are the prospects to watch this year. They're far less bullish on DeRosa. Speaking of ESPN, Peter Gammons seems to really like Theriot's playing (and his nickname). He also compliments the Cubs organization on how they're handling Wood and Prior. So much for the Eastern Seaboard Programming Network jokes.
I really want to know how Muskat gets halfway through an article on a upbeat, winning sort of mood among Cubs players before she mentions "Cubbie swagger." I really do.
Bruce Miles says that the weakness of the NL Central is something of an exaggeration. And it could be said that the NL Central last year was stronger than the '05 NL East. Seriously, that entire division was a single win away from nobody having a winning record. (And just two Nationals wins from having a division leader with a worse record than every team in the NL East!) That said -- I'm gonna have to disagree with Bruce. The NL Central is not exactly a powerhouse. We're well away from the '05 Cardinals, where they won 100 games. (And even then, it's not like the rest of the NL Central was doing a whole lot to keep pace. The Astros may have won the wild card, but that doesn't change the fact that they were 11 games back.) [Also, I keep getting told we have a guy like Ryan Freel. I want Adam Dunn. I have no idea where we'd put him -- left fielder is the new second baseman in the Cubs organization. But still.]