Hendry Feels No Pressure to Get Deal Done

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Hendry Feels No Pressure to Get Deal Done

Monday, December 7th

5:05 pm

No trades yet, and Jim Hendry says that he feels no pressure to get something done by the end of the Winter Meetings in Indy. With that said, sources close to the situation say the Cubs talked with 5 or 6 teams about possible deals on the first day of activity here. Several of the teams in discussions are new to the mix. Most likely, Hendry will have to move Milton Bradley before he can add that new piece to the lineup and centerfield.

Lou Piniella talked a lot about team speed at the end of last season. The Cubs didn't have a legitimate base stealer or a true leadoff man in 2009. He still wants both of those things, but admitted that adding team speed will not likely be a part of this offseason. The Cubs established bigger priorities in their organizational meetings in Mesa after the season. Adding an RBI bat, right or left handed is the key. Centerfield is where they want to do it. So, circle Mike Cameron and Marlon Byrd as tops on their wish list. The Cubs also want to add a veteran arm to the bullpen with Carlos Marmol ready to take over as the everyday Closer in 2010.

What to watch for:

1. The Bradley Trade. Once it happens the Cubs will have a much better idea of what they can do. As of 5pm Eastern nothing is imminent.

2. Fontenot in deals? The Cubs would like to have a backup infielder who plays 2nd and shortstop. Fontenot played some 3rd base in addition to 2nd base last year but he struggled at the plate. Don't be surprised if Mighty Mike ends up in a trade.

3. Roy Halladay. Nationally, he is the story here. Everybody is waiting to see if the Blue Jays can move their ace this week. Somebody is going to land one of the top 5 pitchers in baseball.

3:16 pm

I'm down in Indy for the MLB winter meetings. Things are off to a great start with a stop at the local Chick-Fil-A around Lafayette. It's amazing what a chicken biscuit can do for your day. I had two.

Hardly recognized Lou Piniella in the lobby. The Cubs manager has a personal trainer and has trimmed down the last two months while fishing in the Keys.

No secret what the Cubs want to do here...trade Milton Bradley. Lou Piniella says its one of the things they'd like to accomplish here. Once the Cubs find a trade parter, look for Mike Cameron to be a guy on their radar. The Cubs want a centerfielder who can not only hit but play solid defense. Cameron is also a solid clubhouse leader. Texas and Tampa Bay remain possible trade candidates along with Kansas City. Jim Hendry will address the media at 5pm ET tonight.

Also from Lou, a challenge for Carlos Zambrano! More on that, plus the latest trade info coming in my live report from Indy on SportsNite tonight. I'll keep you posted the minute anything breaks right here on the Bricks and Ivy blog.

Honda Road Ahead: Can Cubs slow down Nationals bats?

Honda Road Ahead: Can Cubs slow down Nationals bats?

CSN's David Kaplan and David DeJesus discuss the upcoming matchups in this edition of the Cubs Road Ahead, presented by Chicagoland & NW Indiana Honda Dealers.

Maybe a four-game series with the N.L. East-leading Washington Nationals will help the Cubs take off. 

It did last year. 

The Cubs swept the Nats early last season, boosting themselves into first place in the National League - a position they wouldn't relinquish. More than a sweep, though, a positive series is vital for a team that continues to hover around .500. 

To do so, Joe Maddon's pitchers must somehow slow the Nationals offense, which has managed to push across more runs than any team in the majors. 

After D.C., the Cubs are off to Cincy for a three-game set with the Reds. 

Watch David Kaplan and David DeJesus preview the upcoming matchups in the video above. 

Cubs not worrying about a thing after split with Marlins: 'We're right there'

Cubs not worrying about a thing after split with Marlins: 'We're right there'

MIAMI – Jon Jay walked into a quiet clubhouse late Sunday morning, turned right and headed directly toward the sound system in one corner of the room, plugging his phone into the sound system and playing Bob Marley’s “Three Little Birds.”

The Cubs outfielder whistled as he changed into his work clothes at Marlins Park, singing along to the lyrics with Anthony Rizzo a few lockers over: “Don’t worry, about a thing, ‘cause every little thing gonna be all right.” 

That’s what the Cubs keep telling themselves, because most of them have World Series rings and the National League Central is such a bad division.

“The biggest thing is to keep the floaties on until we get this thing right,” manager Joe Maddon said before a 4-2 loss left the Cubs treading water again at 38-37. “We’re solvent. We’re right there. We’re right next to first place.”

The Cubs will leave this tropical environment and jump into the deep end on Monday night for the start of a four-game showdown against the Washington Nationals in the nation’s capital.

Miami sunk the Cubs in the first inning when Addison Russell made a costly error on the routine groundball Miami leadoff guy Ichiro Suzuki chopped to shortstop, a mistake that helped create three unearned runs. Martin Prado drilled Mike Montgomery’s first-pitch fastball off the left-center field wall for a two-out double and a 3-0 lead. Montgomery (1-4, 2.03 ERA) lasted six innings and retired the last 10 batters he faced.

“Keep The Floaties On” sounds like an idea for Maddon’s next T-shirt. The 2017 Cubs haven’t been more than four games over .500 or two games under .500 at any point this season. The 2016 Cubs didn’t lose their 37th game until July 19 and spent 180 days in first place.

“That’s what was so special about it,” Rizzo said. “We boat-raced from Game 1 to Game 7 with a couple bumps in the road, but this is baseball. It’s not going to be all smooth-sailing every day. You got to work through things.”