So it turns out I was worried about the wrong time frame Tuesday night when I had two hours away from news sources at 6:00 p.m. to watch my daughter's choral concert, figuring that in that two-hour window everything would happen and I wouldn't be able to catch it. The concert was a lot of fun, though, and my daughter can sing a heck of a lot better than I ever could. I guess from now on I need to stay up until 12:30 a.m. or so to catch all of the good scoops. Now if I could just find a way to function on five hours of sleep per night...
With all of the stories from the major outlets over the past 48 hours, I'm giving the blogs the day off. But they'll be back again, rest assured.
From Comcast SportsNet Chicago:
- With the signing of Jon Lester complete, Patrick Mooney says Cubs fans can dream about their new number one starter and Joe Maddon directing what might be the best collection of young talent in baseball.
- Needless to say a portion of the Twitterverse was not happy with Lester's decision, but he took the high road with those who voiced their frustrations at his decision.
- But there was also a portion of the Twitterverse that was more than happy about it.
- What does Las Vegas think about the deal? Well, the Cubs have gone from 40-to-1 longshots of winning the World Series at the beginning of the offseason to 12-to-1 after the signing, tied for fifth-best behind the Dodgers, Nationals, Angels, and Tigers.
- As for the Miguel Montero trade, Mooney says that Montero checks several boxes on the Cubs' checklist. One of these days I'd really love to see that checklist.
- He also looks at what the Cubs might do next now that the Montero and Lester deals are done.
- Joe Maddon was certainly excited about the Lester deal, saying that "This definitely propels us into Plan A."
- Tracy Ringolsby thinks that Maddon has plenty of reasons to be excited, and not just because of the $30 million deal that he got to be the manager.
- Phil Rogers' take on the deal can be summed up in his final four words of his piece: Let the fun begin.
- Jake Arrieta found out about the news at 2:00am when his wife woke him up and told him. I'm pretty sure my wife would never wake me up at 2:00am to tell me anything baseball-related. At least not in this reality. Maybe in an alternate reality, though...
- Carrie Muskat breaks down the numbers in Lester's contract. Well, some of them.
- Rogers and Richard Justice look at the offseasons so far for the Cubs and the White Sox, with Justice saying that the Cubs might be the most interesting team in baseball.
- Ryan Dempster was feeling the buzz even before the Lester and Montero moves happened, fielding questions from fans while he was attending a Blackhawks game last week against the Blues.
- Another thing Joe Maddon's eager about, among other things: How to handle the Cubs' day games.
- He's also looking forward to teaching the players the Cubs way of playing the game.
From ESPN Chicago:
- Jon Greenberg's reaction: On a day when Cub fans are used to waking up to snow, they instead woke up to a rare ray of sunshine.
- David Schoenfield says that the Cubs are betting on continued good health for Lester as well as his cutter pushing him to a new level as a legitimate ace.
- Jesse Rogers recaps other reactions from the baseball world to the Lester signing.
- As for playoff hopes, Rogers thinks that the Cubs will need to do more work the offense to make the leap to the postseason.
- [VIDEO] The ESPN Baseball Tonight crew discusses the other moves that the Cubs are looking to make.
From CBS Chicago:
- Chris Emma writes that with the Lester signing the Cubs have invested in win-now mode. Is that the same win-now mode as the Cardinals' win-now mode?
- Dan Bernstein says that the moves from both the Cubs and the White Sox are very good news for a sports town that really needed it.
- Self-noted cynic Tim Baffoe says it's time to shrug the doubters off because this is fun right now.
- CBS Chicago also presents five impressive statistics Lester has compiled during his career.
From the Chicago Tribune via RedEye Chicago:
- David Haugh's take: the North Side has already fallen head-over-heels for the news.
- And Steve Rosenbloom says that somebody terrific finally took the Cubs' money.
- Matt Lindner owned up to the egg on his face from penning a column saying that the Cubs needed to sign Lester -- which appeared on newsstands after the deal was already done.
- CBS Chicago had five statistics about Lester; the Tribune presents five other things to know about him.
- Paul Sullivan also looks at what's possibly next, going the starting pitcher route with Ervin Santana as his pick.
From the Chicago Sun-Times:
- Rick Morrissey gives kudos to Theo Epstein and Jed Hoyer for getting their man.
- Rick Telander also feels a bit excited, saying that Chicago might be an exciting two-baseball-team town again.
- Scott Boras chimed in from the winter meetings, saying that it's great to see the Monsters of the Midway back at it in Chicago on both sides of town.
- Even Duke basketball coach Mike Krzyzewski had something to say, and it was summed up in one word: Hallelujah.
- David Just rounds up more opinions from analysts Keith Law, Buster Olney, Jeff Sullivan, Craig Calcaterra, and Ken Rosenthal.
- And there was even more reaction from the Twitterverse.
- Bill Chuck provides nine other interesting statistics about Lester. Man, these statistics are everywhere!
From the Daily Herald:
- Barry Rozner also gives kudos to Epstein, saying he is nothing if not a ruthless opportunist.
- Mike Imrem writes that Tom Ricketts and Jerry Reinsdorf finally appear to be all in on winning.
- Bruce Miles sees the Cubs pushing toward contention, but he's not printing his Cubs-White Sox World Series tickets yet.
- This was actually in the Sun-Times, but I wanted to split it out in its own area. Dick Enberg won the Ford C. Frick Award for excellence in baseball broadcasting, edging out former Cubs broadcaster Jack Quinlan.
Today's food for thought:
- Maybe I need to change hobbies... a black-and-white photo was recently purchased by a private collector -- for $6.5 million.
- Scientists have created a new form of ice.
- And the most confusing sentence in the world uses only one word.