Results tagged ‘ Jed Hoyer ’
The Cubs will have to wait a little longer for Jon Lester to make a decision regarding where he wants to pitch next year. According to WEEI’s Rob Bradford, Lester will meet with at least two more teams next week. The free agent pitcher already has talked to the Cubs, Red Sox, and Braves. The Cubs made their push on Tuesday when Lester visited Chicago.
The Cubs’ Anthony Rizzo said he has not been contacted to help recruit any free agents, including Lester, who was the first baseman’s teammate briefly with the Red Sox.
“All these free agents have earned the right to be free agents and they deserve to visit all the teams that are interested and do what’s best for their families and themselves,” Rizzo said Friday in Chicago. “It really [comes down to] the best decision for them. The best sales pitch I can give is that we’re an exciting team and this is Chicago.”
Cubs execs Theo Epstein and Jed Hoyer know all about sales pitches, especially at Thanksgiving time. In 2003, Epstein and Hoyer, then in the Red Sox front office, had Thanksgiving dinner with Curt Schilling, part of their effort to get the right-hander to drop the no-trade clause in his contract and accept being dealt to Boston.
“If we didn’t sign Curt, it probably would have been the worst Thanksgiving of my life,” Epstein said in 2003. “We tried to refuse [the invitation], and Curt said it was a deal breaker, they would be insulted if we didn’t go.”
Lester most likely will spend Thanksgiving at home.
– Carrie Muskat
Cubs GM Jed Hoyer has had plenty of conversations with other teams prior to Thursday’s Trade Deadline but said they may not make another deal.
“It wouldn’t surprise me if we made no moves,” Hoyer said Tuesday. “I expect to be active, we’re having a lot of conversations. It’s still early. [Wednesday] is sort of moving day. I expect things will get more serious as we move into tomorrow. People have some reluctance on the last day.
“[Wednesday] evening is when a lot of people hone in on the deals they want to make,” he said.
The Cubs made their blockbuster move on July 4, trading starting pitchers Jeff Samardzija and Jason Hammel to the Athletics for four players, including highly touted shortstop Addison Russell and outfielder Billy McKinney.
Other teams are still trying to find the right match.
“People try to find a dance partner on the 30th and 31st,” Hoyer said. “As you get to [Wednesday] evening, people want to make deals and they’re more willing to pair up, and I expect that to be the same thing.”
There has been some interest in the Cubs’ left-handed relievers, James Russell and Wesley Wright.
– Carrie Muskat
The Cubs have already dealt two-fifths of their rotation, and on Tuesday, designated second baseman Darwin Barney for assignment. GM Jed Hoyer expects more movement before the Trade Deadline.
“We’ve gotten a lot of calls on guys,” Hoyer said Tuesday. “Call traffic, if you will, picks up over the next week or so. I expect we’ll be on the phone a lot. Not sure if we’ll make any moves but we’ll be active looking to better the team.”
The Cubs have gotten interest from teams in some of their relievers, including lefties James Russell and Wesley Wright and right-hander Carlos Villanueva.
They aren’t afraid to make moves. One year ago on July 22, the Cubs traded Matt Garza to the Rangers for Mike Olt, Justin Grimm, Neil Ramirez, and C.J. Edwards. Olt, Grimm and Ramirez are currently on the big league roster. Edwards is a top pitching prospect.
– Carrie Muskat
At the All-Star Game, Tampa’s David Price said Chicago “would be the coolest city to win a championship in right now.” Cubs president of baseball operations Theo Epstein and GM Jed Hoyer feel the same way, which is what enticed them to join the Cubs.
On Monday, FOX Sports’ Ken Rosenthal wrote that the Cubs should pursue Price and deal some of the team’s top prospects for the pitcher. The Cubs do need starting pitching, but they are not contenders this year, and most likely not in 2015 either. How does Hoyer feel about the rumors?
“I don’t really pay attention,” Hoyer said Monday in a radio interview on The Game 87.7. “There are going to be a lot of rumors about our players and our acquiring good players because of the good talent we have in the Minors. I think we’ll be lumped into the rumors. We just sort of ignore them.”
The Cubs got a jump on the market by dealing Jeff Samardzija and Jason Hammel on July 4 to the Athletics for a package of prospects, including talented shortstop Addison Russell, who hit two home runs Sunday, including a grand slam, and finished with six RBIs at Double-A Tennessee.
The Cubs do have depth at middle infield in the Minor League system. But there also are no guarantees as to how the prospects will develop, and when they’ll be ready. Hoyer would not comment directly on the Price talk; it’s the Cubs’ policy not to discuss other teams’ players.
– Carrie Muskat
A year ago at the Trade Deadline, the Cubs dealt two of their starters, lost another to injury, and then shut down another in early September. They had to scramble to fill in the gaps. This year, the Cubs have already traded one starter — Scott Feldman — and Matt Garza could also change uniforms by the July 31 deadline. But this year, the Cubs feel they’re better prepared to handle the moves.
“There’s no question the pitching staff we ran out there in September  was short,” GM Jed Hoyer said Wednesday. “I think we feel a lot better about that. We have more depth in the Minor Leagues, more depth on the Major League roster. It was hard to watch [last year]. … Shutting down [Jeff] Samardzija was incredibly hard because we didn’t have anyone to fill in for him.”
The Cubs expect Scott Baker, who has been rehabbing from Tommy John surgery on his right elbow, to be ready in about a month. Jake Arrieta, acquired from the Orioles in the Feldman deal, also could start. Plus, they already have Carlos Villanueva, who has gone from the rotation to the ‘pen and back to the rotation.
Chris Rusin and Brooks Raley, who both made their Major League debuts last season, also have another year of experience.
“There’s obviously no question we’re much more equipped than last year,” manager Dale Sveum said.
Garza is the prime pitcher on the trade market, and Hoyer acknowledged that he has received a lot of interest.
“There’s obviously a lot of incoming phone calls,” Hoyer said. “There’s a lot about Matt, obviously, but a lot about other players on the team, too. I think in general in the game, phone traffic has picked up. I feel there’s a lot of interest in our players. The team is playing well, and a lot of our individual players are playing well. I think that’s a big part of it.”
Scouts also are keeping an eye on closer Kevin Gregg and outfielder Nate Schierholtz.
– Carrie Muskat
Alfonso Soriano has been mentioned in trade rumors this offseason but he was expected to be back in left field at the start of the 2012 season for the Cubs. GM Jed Hoyer said it was “unlikely” that Soriano would be dealt by Opening Day.
“I know Sori’s been working really hard this offseason … our hope is obviously you want him to get on base a little more,” Hoyer said during an interview on ESPN 1000 on Thursday. “The power was there last year, the RBIs were there. Obviously, it really comes down to defense and we’re hoping with some better conditioning and some better health that he can be a little better out there. We don’t want to do anything to hurt our pitchers but we do believe there’s something left in Sori.”
Soriano, who turned 36 in January, hit 26 homers and drove in 88 runs last season but batted .244.
– Carrie Muskat
The Cubs have been linked to free agents Albert Pujols and Prince Fielder. GM Jed Hoyer would not comment specifically on the two first basemen when asked Wednesday.
“As I’ve stated in the past, we’re a major market team and we’re going to be involved across the spectrum,” Hoyer said. “I’m not going to address whether we’re on or off individual players other than the fact that we’re in contact with a lot of teams and a lot of agents and we’re doing everything we can to improve the team for next year and the future.”
What is not a secret is that Hoyer has been in contact with Kerry Wood’s agent, Pat Rooney, regarding a new deal for the free agent pitcher for 2012.
“We’d love to bring Kerry back,” Hoyer said. “He had a great year last year and he’s an excellent ambassador for the Cubs. The stated goal of bringing Kerry back has been made very clear.”
– Carrie Muskat
Theo Epstein and Jed Hoyer, the Cubs brain trust, are meeting with agents re: free agents and talking to teams about possible trades during the General Manager Meetings at the Pfister Hotel in Milwaukee this week. Right now, it’s the initial phase of conversations.
“We’re still very much in the information gathering mode on all of that stuff [re: free agents],” Hoyer said Tuesday. “We’re not really in a position to rule out much at this point. We’re going to listen on a lot of things and think about a lot of things. I’d be misleading if I started to dice up the free agent pool too much.”
Hoyer wouldn’t specify how much he has to work with as far as the team payroll is concerned, and would not comment on specific players. But they are meeting with lots of agents to lay the ground work as they try to fill some spots on the Cubs roster.
“Coming in late sometimes, a player looks at it like, ‘Where’s this team been? Maybe I was a second choice, third choice,'” Hoyer said. “I think expressing an interest is important. Coming out of the gate strong with an offer, a lot of times at this time of year, people are wary to accept anything because they want to see how the market develops. I think expressing interest early is very important.”
– Carrie Muskat
San Diego general manager Jed Hoyer said on Thursday the calf injury
that landed second baseman David Eckstein on the 15-day disabled list
won’t hasten or change the way the team is approaching the July 31
non-wavier Trade Deadline.
“We still don’t have a feel for Eck’s injury yet, so we don’t want to
prioritize an infielder. … We have been looking at infield depth
anyway, so it doesn’t change our course,” Hoyer said.
The Padres will know more about the extent of Eckstein’s injury after
they return home late Sunday after a game in Pittsburgh. He’ll likely
have an MRI on the calf on Monday
The team, for the foreseeable future, will cover second base with Jerry
Hairston, who is hitting .348 since July 5. Everth Cabrera will play
every day at shortstop. The Padres can use Oscar Salazar at second base
in a pinch if need be.
As for their search for middle infield help, the Padres have inquired
about 36-year-old Miguel Tejada of the Orioles and have kicked the tires
on a handful of other players.
Hoyer said that the cost of doing potential business is still high and
that he’s still making a lot of calls to teams about players who could
help the Padres.
– Corey Brock