I think even the writers get more productive when the club is playing well.
From Comcast SportsNet
- Theo Epstein played wet blanket, saying he didn't foresee a call-up to the big leagues this season for Kris Bryant.
- And here's what the team wants to see from Bryant in Iowa. This is a pretty good, thorough article, by the way.
- Bryant says playing the outfield is a possibility.
- The team president also said Manny Ramirez has been a "breath of fresh air" in the Cub system.
- Epstein also isn't worried about Albert Almora's scuffles in Daytona.
- The Cubs are building a swagger.
- The Cubs' outfielders recognize their collective offensive woes.
- The Cubs are introducing Wrigley Field Smokies.
- Kyle Schwarber is settling into the Cubs' system.
- And even though the Cubs' recent first round pick will mostly play the outfield the rest of this year, the team isn't giving up on him as a catcher.
- Cubs' fans are getting a good look at Schwarber in Kane County. The early returns? "The dude can hit."
From Cubs Den
- Following the minor leagues has become a matter of hype. John Arguello tries to cut through some of the noise and writes about the joys of finding hidden gems.
- Cuban outfielder Yasmani Tomas has defected. Could he be part of the outfield solution for the Cubs?
- Starlin Castro is feeling relaxed. And apparently powerful, since he has blasted past his home run total from last year.
- Javier Baez has improved his approach, which has improved his outlook in Triple-A.
- Theo Epstein reflected on Kris Bryant and other minor league promotions.
- And the outlook for the "Core 4" is still good.
- The team is also happy with Kyle Schwarber's quick progress. Reading between Theo's comments, I think Kyle's catching days are more-or-less done and the top pick may well be headed to the AFL this fall.
- The team took a cautious approach with Hector Rondon's tender elbow, knowing his health was the most important consideration.
- Here's a primer on the top IFA candidates. Though, as BCB's own Tim Huwe has pointed out, the Cubs aren't likely to be involved with any of the top names.
- The annual "Hot Stove Cool Music" benefit concert Friday night raised over $200,000 for charity.
- The Cubs are in a happy place, but Jesse Rogers warns that July still "looms."
- And that means trade talk, which is just speculation. For now.
- Jason Stark says it will be a seller's market this trade season. That's good news for the Cubs.
- You can expect Manny Ramirez to join the Iowa Cubs this coming week.
- Real progress for the Cubs may just be a phone call away. Jesse means Kris Bryant.
- (Video) Anthony Rizzo talks about the club's supportive team environment.
- Rizzo and Starlin Castro are coming through "big time."
- Justin Grimm isn't worried about a heavy workload.
- Prospect Will Remillard is giving the club a little catching depth in the minor leagues.
- For Starlin Castro, it's still mind over matter.
- (Video) Kyle Schwarber talks about his whirlwind tour that has landed him in Kane County.
From the Chicago Sun-Times
- Gordo thinks an inability to sign Jeff Samardzija is likely to haunt the Cubs. This is yet another example of Gordo's garbage. He pretends as if Shark plays absolutely no role in the "failure" to come to a contract extension (not to mention no discussion of whether an extension is a good idea or at what price it might be). He also labels the recent public discussions of a negotiation as a "final, failed attempt." I really don't understand why this guy can't just report with an even hand. What really frustrates me is that anyone ranting against Gordo is exactly what that troll wants.
- And the team's strong June won't prevent another sell-off.
- Despite the death of Tony Gwynn being linked to chewing tobacco, some Cubs just can't quit.
From the Daily Herald
- Despite trade rumors, the Cubs' focus is squarely on the field.
- Check this out! Our own Tim Huwe was cited in Fangraphs for writing about pitching prospect Jeff Antigua's "Bugs Bunny change-up."
- Fangraphs also tackles the multi-million dollar question: What should a contract extension for Jeff Samardzija cost? The conclusion? The Cubs' offer of 5 years for $85M was probably generous.
Today's food for thought
- This guy in a suit of Mentos was dunked in a tank of Diet Coke. Read that again, then click to watch.