Chicago Cubs

Fantasy Pitcher Rankings

Fantasy Pitcher Rankings

By David Ferris
CSNChicago.com

The following pitchers are ranked assuming a 5x5 format (wins, saves, ERA, WHIP, strikeouts).

1. Jonathan Papelbon, Phillies
NOTE: The contract doesn't look that silly now.
2. Craig Kimbrel, Braves
3. John Axford, Brewers
NOTE: Nasty stuff, and right mindset for role.
4. Aroldis Chapman, Reds
5. Fernando Rodney, Rays
NOTE: At this point, don't question it.
6. Joel Hanrahan, Pirates
7. Jim Johnson, Orioles
8. Kenley Jansen, Dodgers
9. Joe Nathan, Rangers
10. Jason Motte, Cardinals
NOTE: Could use more movement on fastball, but nonetheless reliable.
11. Santiago Casilla, Giants
12. Chris Perez, Indians
NOTE: Opening day mess was a false alarm.
13. Brett Myers, Astros
14. Rafael Soriano, Yankees
15. Rafael Betancourt, Rockies
16. Tyler Clippard, Nationals
NOTE: Has the skills to handle any role.
17. Jose Valverde, Tigers
18. Jonathan Broxton, Royals
19. Alfredo Aceves, Red Sox
NOTE: He's been sharp since mid-April meltdown.
20. Addison Reed, White Sox
21. Ernesto Frieri, Angels
NOTE: Major heat, gorgeous strikeout rate.
22. Scott Downs, Angels
23. Casey Janssen, Blue Jays
NOTE: Might stick in ninth even after Santos returns.
24. Heath Bell, Marlins
25. Frank Francisco, Mets
NOTE: Turned it on in the nick of time.
26. Huston Street, Padres
27. J.J. Putz, Diamondbacks
28. Matt Capps, Twins
29. Brian Fuentes, Athletics
30. Dale Thayer, Padres
31. Brandon League, Mariners
NOTE: Temporarily removed from the ninth.
32. Steve Cishek, Marlins
NOTE: Has roto value, no matter his role.
33. Darren O'Day, Orioles
NOTE: Deepest bullpen in the AL.
34. Pedro Strop, Orioles
35. James Russell, Cubs
36. Tom Wilhelmsen, Mariners
37. Sergio Santos, Blue Jays
38. Javy Guerra, Dodgers
39. David Robertson, Yankees
NOTE: While he rehabs, Soriano runs with gig.
40. Sergio Romo, Giants
41. Drew Storen, Nationals
NOTE: Don't expect second-half miracle comeback.
42. Alexi Ogando, Rangers
43. Vinnie Pestano, Indians
44. David Hernandez, Diamondbacks
NOTE: Mandatory hedge for Putz owners.
45. Robbie Ross, Rangers
46. Carlos Marmol, Cubs
47. Mike Adams, Rangers
NOTE: Hasn't been sharp in recent outings.
48. Jason Grilli, Pirates
49. Craig Stammen, Nationals
50. Tim Collins, RoyalsNOTE: Love the zesty strikeout rate
51. Jesse Crain, White Sox
52. Scott Atchison, Red Sox
53. Nate Jones, White Sox
54. Sean Marshall, Reds
55. Grant Balfour, Athletics
56. Jonny Venters, Braves
NOTE: Never chase last year's set-up hero.
57. Ryan Cook, Athletics
NOTE: Might get a look if Fuentes struggles or moves on.
58. Sean Burnett, Nationals
59. Josh Lindblom, Dodgers
NOTE: The third man here.
60. Logan Ondrusek, Reds
61. Jose Arredondo, Reds
62. Cory Wade, Yankees
63. Jake McGee, Rays
NOTE: Big arm, getting more leverage spots.
64. Brandon Lyon, Astros
65. Jordan Walden, Angels
66. Matt Thornton, White Sox
NOTE: Useful, but they never liked him closing.
67. Antonio Bastardo, Phillies
68. Wilton Lopez, Astros
69. Koji Uehara, Rangers
70. Tim Byrdak, Mets
71. Jon Rauch, Mets
72. Mitchell Boggs, Cardinals
73. Joaquin Benoit, Tigers
NOTE: The second in command after Valverde.
74. Clay Hensley, Giants
75. Kyle Farnsworth, Rays
NOTE: Unlikely to unseat Rodney.
76. Randy Choate, Marlins
77. Shawn Camp, Cubs
78. Andrew Miller, Red Sox
79. Brad Ziegler, Diamondbacks
NOTE: Ziggy plays guitar.
80. David Phelps, Yankees
81. Octavio Dotel, Tigers
82. Charlie Furbush, Mariners
83. Henry Rodriguez, Nationals
NOTE: His window has closed for good.

Jose Quintana’s ‘career-altering’ game has Cubs planning clinch party in St. Louis

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USA TODAY

Jose Quintana’s ‘career-altering’ game has Cubs planning clinch party in St. Louis

MILWAUKEE – The Cubs are going to destroy Busch Stadium’s visiting clubhouse. The rivalry has fundamentally shifted to the point where the St. Louis Cardinals are hanging around the National League’s wild-card race in a transition year and it would have been a massive failure if the defending World Series champs didn’t win this division. But there will be some symbolism to popping champagne bottles and spraying beer all over that room.

“We intend to clinch there,” Ben Zobrist said after Jose Quintana’s complete-game masterpiece in Sunday’s 5-0 win over the Milwaukee Brewers at Miller Park. “And I think for a lot of the guys that have been around here for a long time, it’s going to be very satisfying.”

Quintana has only been a Cub since the Brewers failed to close a deal with the White Sox and team president Theo Epstein swooped in to make a signature trade during the All-Star break. Quintana hasn’t yet pitched in the playoffs, but this is close enough, the Cubs winning back-to-back 10-inning games against the Brewers and shaking off a walk-off loss before the lefty faced off against Chase Anderson in front of a sellout crowd of 42,212.

Quintana gave the Cubs more data points to consider as they prepare for a probable first-round series against the Washington Nationals. The magic number to eliminate both the Brewers and Cardinals is two, with Milwaukee off on Monday and the Cubs playing a rivalry game in St. Louis that night, meaning the party goggles won’t come out until Tuesday at the earliest.

“It’s the playoffs already for this team,” said Zobrist, who again looked like a World Series MVP in the seventh inning of a 1-0 game when he launched Anderson’s first-pitch fastball into the second deck in right field for a two-run, breathing-room homer. “We’re already thinking that way.

“We’re in postseason mode right now. And we intend to continue that for the next month.”

While there are valid concerns about Jon Lester’s nosedive in performance since coming off the disabled list and the state of Jake Arrieta’s right hamstring, the focus should also be on how Quintana (7-3, 3.50 ERA in 13 starts as a Cub) could be an October game-changer for this rotation.

“Once he got over here, he was really jacked up about having a chance to play in the playoffs,” manager Joe Maddon said. “He’s showing you that right now. Games like that, to me, could be kind of career-altering for a pitcher.

“When you pitch a complete-game shutout on the road under these circumstances, that definitely does something for your interior. It definitely fluffs it up a little bit.”

“It’s exciting to be here,” said Quintana, who allowed only three singles, piled up 10 strikeouts against one walk and hit 93 mph on his 116th and final pitch in the ninth inning. “I just try to help my team and it’s really special when you get that opportunity. It’s about winning and I have a huge opportunity here.”

In all phases of the game – dominant starting pitching, an offense that created different ways to score runs, multiple bullpen contributors and an airtight defense that committed zero errors in 39 innings – Maddon saw what he was looking for: “We reacted in a playoff manner for these four games. Our mental intensity could not be beat.”

That drifting, in-and-out focus had been part of the background when the Cubs shocked the baseball world with the Quintana trade in the middle of July. Concentration won’t be an issue at Busch Stadium. And this hangover will be real.

“It will be nice to do it there, I’ll just say that,” said Zobrist, who understands the Cubs-Cardinals dynamic as someone who grew up in downstate Illinois. “But we got to win the games.

“As John Lackey said it before (this) series: ‘This is not a small series, boys.’ We knew it was a big one here in Milwaukee. And it will be another big one in St. Louis.”

Bulls reach buyout agreement with Dwyane Wade

Bulls reach buyout agreement with Dwyane Wade

Dwyane Wade's Bulls career is set to end just over a year after it began.

According to the Chicago Tribune's K.C. Johnson, the Bulls and Wade have reached an agreement on a buyout.

CSN Chicago's Vincent Goodwill confirmed the report.

Wade signed a two-year, $47.5 million deal with the Bulls last July and averaged 18.3 points, 4.5 rebounds and 3.8 assists per game in 60 games with the Bulls. This summer, Wade exercised his player option for the second year of the contract, worth $23.8 million.

Wade picked up his option just two days before the Bulls traded Jimmy Butler on draft night and went into rebuild mode. According to Goodwill, Dwyane Wade is giving back $8.5 million.

The Bulls will go into next year without any of the 'Three Alphas' the team had last year Wade, Butler and Rajon Rondo.

The news comes a day before Bulls Media Day, which will be live on CSN at 2:30 p.m., and on the same day the team agreed to a two-year deal with Nikolia Mirotic.

Wojnarowski also reported Cleveland, San Antonio, Miami and Oklahoma City are the contenders to sign Wade.