If You Love Someone Enough, Let Them Free

Maddux_watercooler As I look at this image, I think of the old saying, "if you love someone: set them free, if they come back: great
but if not: then it was never meant to be!"  Greg Maddux proved he loved the Cubs, coming back after years of success to help the Cubs get to that  "next level" after 2003.  We all know what has happened in the three years since that magical season.  Now, after staring at this picture all day, we as Cubs fans know what he have to do.  Let Maddux be free of this agony.  If Cedeno make that play in the fifth, the Cubs may have not lost yestedays game to the Marlins.  Then again, who knows? All I know is Maddux does not have many good years left.  In April I wrote that Maddux came here to be the final piece of the puzzle.  A veteran to help lead a staff of young, strong arms; Wood, Prior, Zambrano, Clement.  Maddux was supposed to be a number 5 starter.  Injuries and the loss of Clement changed everything.  Maddux, along with Zambrano, are now the only thing that keeps this team gasping for breath, and its not fair to Maddux.  Let him go to a contender.  The Cubs are now officially in rebuilding mode.  The Cubs need to get trade any players they have that have any value, they need to get rid of the useless corpses, and they need a new coaching staff.  Guys who may have some value to a contender are Maddux, Walker, and Scott Williamson.  If the Cubs could get something for these guys, they should not think twice about letting them go for young talent.  The Cubs next move is to purge themselves of Harriston,  Mabry, and Bynum.  These guys are absolutley useless.  Jones, Pierre, Rusch, and Wood are not going anywhere because no GM in there right mind would ever take on their contracts, nor would they even want these guys.  I have no idea why Hendry signed Rusch, Jones, and Perez to lucrative multi-year deals.  Did Hendry think that other teams would be fighting over these guys?  These guys were not in demand, could have easily been given a one year, incentive laden contract.  Now the Cubs are stuck with these stiffs.  Why the Cubs gave an injury prone Wood a contract extension after 2003 was also beyond me.  He still has never won more than 14 games in a season, and now he has been collecting big checks while doing very little.

The Cubs need to tear it all down and build from scratch.  They need to start from the top down.  The Cubs need to look at their fam system, go over their player develpment, retool their scouting.  I think that the Cubs should trade Maddux and put Wood in the bullpen.  Let Hill, Guzman, Marshall, Ryu, take their lumps and learn.  Trade Todd Walker for talent, let Jones play first, and call Felix Pie up to get some experience.  When Angel Pagan comes back, have him play first until Lee returns.  I would even say we should get rid of the fighting cathcer, Michael Barrett.  Even though he is a good hitter, he cannot call a good game,guys steal on him left and right, and he is a poor defensive catcher.

The one question I have is with Ramirez. I wonder if he can heat it up.  But if he does, should we get rid of him too if that means getting some good quality players.  Ramirez always seems to have back and lower body problems, which hurt his defense and his ability to run out balls. I also question if the guy has any hustle.

Finally, we need a new coaching staff.  Spier has been fine at third, but Dusty didn’t want him there in the first place. He thought everything was just fine with Waving Wendell Kim.  Clines needs to be gone.  When the team is practically last in every offensive categories and has no plate discipline.  The Sarge is useless as a first base coach, and Rothchild has not done anything to make any of the pitchers in his staff any better.  Dusty Baker is the worst manager I have seen.  Period.  The fundamentals, no matter who the players are, are god awful.  He like to stock his team with guys like Neifi Perez and Todd Hollindsworth, and Marquis Grissom.  There is no accountability for mistakes, poor play, or lack of hustle.  The team yells at umps, fights with broadcasters, have tantrums and meltdowns, and lose their cool in the middle of a game.  There is even talk about unhappiness in the clubhouse against Dusty. 

The Cubs need to be start from scratch again. Find a manager who is going to teach these guys how to play the game.  When I saw Joe Girardi grab his pitcher by the jersey and told him what’s what, I realized that’s what the Cubs need.   I am sure Dusty will make a fine manager, just not here.  I know this all sounds painful, but what else can we do?  I am running out of ideas and I can’t sleep at night.  Please help cure my insomnia and give me some ideas



  1. cody@thevinefbcw.com

    At this point, the only cub players that I feel are a necessity is Zambrano & Lee. If they traded every other player and manager tomorrow, I could care less. I did like your point about keeping all the rookie pitchers in the biggs for experience. After all they have the potential they just need some PT.
    Where the hek is Felix Pie? Can we get this kid in center field?

    However, I think we need to hang on the Michael Barrett at least until we become a good team. This way the cubs will still be able to entertain even when they aren’t winning.

  2. ronhcampbell@aol.com

    I’ve tried very hard to not follow the crowd and call for Dusty’s head when we are in a bad run, but of course, we are far beyond that now. We have a team that allows two runs on a sac fly; that has Neifi Perez still on the field despite losing game after game with his bad fielding and terrible at bats. Did this idiot try to bunt with two outs in the bottom of the ninth down by two runs?

    There is plenty wrong besides him, but he is the poster child for why the Cubs have fallen flat on their faces. Send him home, away, let him go drag down another team, along with his other dead weight brothers, Hairston and Bynum.

    Dusty can’t get his players to play fundamental baseball, and the stink of it is pervading the team. I still believe in our young talent, Cedeno and Murton, but they shouldn’t be a part of a club that is the laughing stock of the league. Every runner in the league has the green light to run on our outfield and cut off men. The stench has suddenly made Dempster a batting practice pitcher. Wasn’t he automatic just a month ago? Dusty needs to go.

    Is Lou Piniella available? I’d pay premium channel prices for the reality show that would be our clubhouse with Lou in there. Let Derek Lee come back to a team fresh out the minors except for Barrett, Zambrano, Murton, Pierre, and Cedeno.

    Right now, they are embarrassing, and may cost Ron Santo the rest of his health if they continue.

    I don’t want to hear about injuries, is this one player’s difference? One bat? Assign as much value as you wish to Derek Lee, and he is worth very much, but a healthy, juiced, Barry Bonds in his prime couldn’t pull this team to respectability right now.

    Everyone throughout the lineup is playing sickly baseball. It is time to make them all worry about their jobs and futures, from Ryu to Hendry and MacPhail.

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