The Time Has Come To Say Goodbye…Sort Of

I should have gotten to this last week. Or even after the turn of the year. But as baseball’s offseason has gone to pause, I guess I have too. But now it’s time.

After taking some time to think about it, it’s time to shut down this here Ivy Drip. I can’t say I take great pleasure in it. But given some changes in my life, and things I’d like to do, I just don’t have the motivation or time to write a Cubs blog by myself properly. And really, I probably never did. I was just having too much fun. I’ve taken this from 2013 and the Cubs being awful to 2016 and now. You can’t ask for much more.

That said, I’m not leaving the Cubs or baseball at all. It just makes more sense to me to dedicate my baseball leanings to both CubsDen and BP Wrigleyville full-time. If I’m going to do this as a hobby, I’d better do it on the bigger stage, at least that’s how I feel. So if you do enjoy my baseball rantings, and you should really ask yourself a lot of questions if you do, you won’t go without. And I’ll be writing much more regularly at those two places than I have been, so I don’t know that it will be a great drop in material, if any at all.

Also, please keep following the Twitter feed, as that’s going to become my personal Twitter where I basically solely work from soon. Hockey, baseball, LFC, beer, music, wrestling, it’s all going to come from there. So please keep it open.

Thanks for the ride. It’s been a blast. And it’s not over. It’s just changing. And I look forward to that.

I Keep Crawling Back To Yu

Been meaning to get around to this for a couple days. The pivot of the Cubs toward Yu Darvish has been something of a surprise, and while hardly a sure thing yet there does seem to be a lot of smoke.

One aspect seems to be that he’ll come in cheaper than Jake Arrieta. And when you start to dig in a bit you can see why. though they’re basically the same age, they might not have the same tread on the tires.

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Winter Meetings – It’s All Happening

Fair amount of moves since we last talked. Let’s see if we can’t rip through them.

– Drew Smyly. Interesting, if only because he got hurt specifically because I took him in my fantasy draft last year. Clearly this is a move with 2019 in mind… except if things go the way you think they might the rotation in 2019 is also pretty set. Hendricks, Lester, Q, and Quintana aren’t going anywhere and we’d have to assume Alex Cobb isn’t signing for one year. Also we have to allow for the possibility that the Cubs might have actually developed another starter by then. I know, don’t want to blow your mind or anything.

Even if Smyly came back to full strength after TJ surgery, his best year still makes him nothing more than a mid-rotation starter. This isn’t some former #2 or something that the Cubs are hoping they can unearth. Not that a mid-rotation starter is a bad thing to have and would be valuable as either depth or a trade piece.

Smyly’s most effective year came as a reliever for the Tigers, but that was four seasons ago. It’s unlikely that’s what the Cubs are seeing down the road. But whatever, doesn’t really cost you anything.

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As You Wallow, In This Sea Of Morrow

It’s been rumored since before the World Series was over, but the Chicago Cubs are on the verge of signing Brandon Morrow, pending a physical. Which is obviously no sure thing given his history, but these things rarely go balls-up over that. Let’s just assume that Morrow is coming to the Northside.

When he’s on the field, there’s not too much to complain about with Morrow. Last year he was stupid dominant. He struck out over 10 hitters per nine while walking under two, You’re not going to complain about a 5-to-1 K-BB ratio.

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Into The Woods

As we’ve discussed while the Hot Stove took forever to warm up, the Cubs might have to dig a little in their search for a starting pitcher or two. There wasn’t an obvious piece out there like the winter they signed Jon Lester or the clear filler of John Lackey when the 4th spot opened up in the winter before 2016. The market is thin, the two pitchers at the top in Jake Arrieta and Yu Darvish are awfully expensive for the questions they bring. So the Cubs might have to buy and sculpt, and that’s what they look to have done with the signing of Tyler Chatwood today.

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I’m Going To Talk Myself Into Jake Odorizzi, And I Might Take You With Me

Jake Odorizzi has been a rumored target for the Cubs the past two offseasons. It’s the same reasons as every other pitcher you’ve heard connected to the Cubs, which at this point is just about any pitcher under the age of 30. He’s young-ish, he’s cost-controlled for a few more years, he’s serviceable enough. And after last year, he’s going to come cheap. He probably won’t cost you any of the Four Players Of The Trade-acalypse at this point.

Still, his name didn’t exactly get you tingly in parts, good or bad ones. He’s rotation-filler. He takes the ball, and he generally doesn’t get turned into goo when he does. Except for last year.

But there might be more to it.

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Everyone Knows The Cubs Are Going To Trade For A Pitcher. But What My Book Presupposes Is… Maybe They Don’t?

The hot-stove hasn’t really gotten going yet. Maybe the pilot light is out. Seems like the whole league is waiting for a Giancarlo Stanton-sized shoe to drop, along with an Otani signing before everyone opens up for what’s left. We’re still a couple weeks away from the Winter Meetings, so we might be in a holding pattern until then. Basically, we’re all waiting for the baseball key log.

So we sit and wait, and wonder which of the four trade pieces of the Apocalypse–Baez, Russell, Happ, or Schwarber–are moved along for pitching. They’ve told us that’s basically what’s coming. Everyone around the Cubs is saying that’s what’s going to happen. Looking at what’s left in the minors, there’s probably not enough there.

And yet, I can’t help but feel like the Cubs might be forcing it a bit.

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