I’ve been slacking on the notes section in this daily piece over the past few days, but I’m sure you can understand, what with the Cubs going to their third straight NLCS and all. So I figured I’d go a little heavier on some more indirect Cubs stories this time around. Interestingly enough, a couple of them feature the Marlins.
As we’ve seen in his short time in ownership, Derek Jeter isn’t afraid to make waves. Any doubt about whether he’d be willing to trade franchise cornerstone Giancarlo Stanton went out the window when he had several iconic employees fired. Then came the news that the Fish were looking to cut payroll to around $90 million for 2018, a significant decrease from the roughly $115 million they were at this season.
My math skills aren’t great, but the difference in those figures looks to be awfully close to the $25 million Stanton is set to earn next year. That’s a big jump over the $14.5 million he made this season and is less than 10 percent of what he could earn through 2028 on his not-small contract. When you consider how much the next wave of free agents is primed to make, Stanton’s deal is actually pretty reasonable. Thing is, there might be more to it than just the Marlins’ (un)willingness to pay him.
Though the statuesque slugger is still under contract for much longer than it’d normally take to rebuild a team, he doesn’t seem excited to stay around for such an overhaul. Or that’s what it sounds like based on what he told Jon Heyman of FanRag Sports.
“I don’t want to rebuild … I’ve lost for seven years,”
“I’m sick of the negativity. Anything positive I’ve done, there’s still negativity. I’m doing this … but the owner’s doing that. I’m doing this, but the team’s doing that.”
We’ve heard a few teams brought up as being interested in acquiring Stanton’s services, namely the Yankees, Cardinals, and Phillies, all of which have the both the human and financial capital to make a trade work. You’ve also got the Red Sox, who haven’t been shy about going out and getting the players they want.
But could the Cubs be in the mix?
Buried way down at the bottom of his piece on Torey Lovullo, the Boston Globe’s Nick Cafardo (h/t to Michael Cerami of Bleacher Nation for finding that) throws out the idea that the Cubs have “an arsenal of players the Marlins would love to get.” While that may be true, I’m not sure the Cubs would love the idea of parting with the players it’d take to acquire a guy who’s set to make that kind of money and who can opt out after 2020. They might be better off just waiting to pay the hell out of someone in free agency.
Speaking of, they’ll have plenty of their own guys to worry about paying here in the very near future. Even though is seems close to inevitable that Stanton will be moved this winter, I can’t imagine the Cubs being seriously involved. If they are, though, I think it’s imperative for them to let Stanton know that even a repeat of his 59-home run explosion would place him fourth on their all-time single-season list.
Jim Hendry potential Marlins GM
With Jeter apparently intent on bringing many of his old teammates and acquaintances from his Yankees days down to Miami, Jon Heyman mentions current Yankees advisor Jim Hendry as a possibility for the front office. Peter Gammons went so far as to mention the former Cubs GM as the “anticipated GM” of the Marlins, though it’s buried in other information about John Farrell.
I suppose we could really reach and say that his relationship with the Cubs could lead to Hendry wanting to work with them on Stanton, but this isn’t exactly Dallas Green and the Phillies we’re talking about. There may be something to the Hendry-to-Miami stuff, but it doesn’t mean much for other moves.
Dodgers rotation, gametimes set
As of Friday afternoon, we knew for certain who the Dodgers were starting in the first and fourth games of the series, along with what time the first two games in LA would start. We learned the rest in the evening, as it was confirmed that Rich Hill and Yu Darvish would be sandwiched between Clayton Kershaw and Alex Wood.
The weekend games in LA are set for 7 pm and 6:30 pm CT, which is nice. The first two games back in Chicago, however, are set for 8 pm CT due to the overlap with the ALCS games in New York. Looks like the whole City that Never Sleeps thing is a load of hooey. Should it be required, Game 5 gets a merciful 7 pm CT start. And the final two games in LA go off at 3 pm and 6:30 pm CT.
Despite being two hours behind, the Dodgers will host the four earliest starts of the seven game series (should it go that long). Does anyone see anything weird about that?
More news and notes
- The Cubs have decided on their Game 1 starter, but that information had not been made publicly available as of post time. It’s going to be either John Lackey or Jose Quintana, with the latter making way more sense from where I’m looking. Q only threw 12 pitches to four batters in Thursday’s win, so it’s not as if rest is a real issue. And with the days off coming into play, a Lackey start would be bumping other starters to more than four days between outings. That could be seen as a good thing on some level, but this is no time to tinker with routines and allow anyone to get stiff or rusty.
- I’m sure no one reading this is enough of a jerk to need the following advice, but don’t tweet to athletes who have put up a poor performance. There were apparently enough idiots doing that Thursday and Friday that Carl Edwards Jr. set his Twitter account to protected.
- Hey, did you know the NLCS starts tonight? Crazy.