Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Cubs Sign David DeJesus, And Other Notes

My wish is my command?
A New Right Fielder for Wrigley
News broke Tuesday morning that the Chicago Cubs have agreed to terms with right fielder David DeJesus.

I — and I imagine most saberists — rather like the move. DeJesus will earn $10M over the next two years with a club option for a third season in 2014. He's making half what the Cubs paid Carlos Pena, and given DeJesus's strong fielding and righty-mashing ways, he should easily be as productive or more-so than Carlos Pena, who earned (or, rather, will earn because of the contracts particulars) twice as much for just one season.

DeJesus will also be playing in the NL for the first time, a move that could very easily help his offensive production. The major drawback, of course, is that he'll be 32 in 2012, so he may start declining during his tenure with the Cubs, but his skillset (non-power, strong fielding) is the kind that typically ages well.

Hooray! I like the signing.

Ari Kaplan and Scouting Front Offices
Here's a rather good article from the Chicago Tribune's Paul Sullivan wherein he sheds a little insight on Tom Rickett and his process of hiring Theo Epstein. He also spills the beans on what the Cubs lone stats guy, Ari Kaplan, was doing this past year:

After Jim Hendry's firing, Ricketts had statistical analysis manager Ari Kaplan and a consultant analyze all 30 teams on cost per victory, number of players developed, average value of their systems and other factors. He said he made about 20 calls to owners, GMs, former GMs and agents "to ask them what they would do in my situation."

And they said Get Theo Epstein. Go figure. Ari could've saved the time and asked me. :)

Double Maddux in Texas
Do you know who really needs help with their pitching staff? The Texas Rangers.

Yeah, they just keep churning out pitching superstars like the Tampa Bay Rays of brisket, but apparently they need more help because they just hired away Greg Maddux.

Thanks a lot, jerks.

Shoeless Joe, a Career Too Short
Yesterday I waxed historical and bemoaned the loss of perhaps 10 extra years of the great Joe Jackson.

I'm an unabashed Shoeless Joe fan, so remember that as you read the article, which does not share many kind words for ol' Pete Rose:
Frankly, I don’t care too much about Ol’ Rosey. Yeah, he leads the world in hits, but he certainly doesn’t lead the game in wOBA or wRC+ — in fact, depending on the plate appearances requirement, you might find him thereabouts of page 14 on that particular dispay (one sorted by wRC+, that is). To me, that screams empty batting average.
Sorry Rose fans, but I miss Jackson more than Head First Slide.

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