Thought I compile some links for you guys to enjoy this Monday afternoon:
- The city of Naples is reportedly making a strong push to bring the Cubs to Naples for Spring Training. The Cubs have played in Arizona since 1952, and they draw the biggest crowds every year. The Cubs' lease runs through 2016, but they can opt out in 2012 for 4.2 million dollars. The Cubs would benefit from a state of the art facility, but relocating would be incredibly expensive. They use the facility year round, with extended spring training and their rookie team operating it once the team leaves at the end of March.
- Ted Keith of SI.com has a story on the best and worst free agent signings from the 2008-2009 offseason. If you guessed Milton Bradley as the worst signing, you were correct. Keith definitely did his homework, as usual, and it was a very interesting read. Let me know what you think of his rankings for the best signings.
- John Fay of the Cincinnati Enquirer spoke with Reds GM Walk Jocketty who doesn't expect his team to be big players in the market this offseason. Jocketty expects to configure his team with in-house options. If young Reds players Edinson Volquez, Johnny Cueto, Jay Bruce, and Joey Votto can put up big numbers, they could probably put up a respectable season with some of the veterans locked up through 2010. The Reds would benefit from bringing in a shortstop, either through trade or free agency.
- The Brewers' signing of Trevor Hoffman is one of the best signings from last offseason. Hoffman has a 1.88 ERA with 34 saves in 49 games this season, and is well respected in the clubhouse. Brewers GM Doug Melvin said he plans to talk with Hoffman about a contract before the exclusive negotiating rights window expires.
- I've been thinking a lot today about potential fits for Milton Bradley. Bradley fit in well in Texas, but financial issues along with a crowded outfield will prevent that from happening. Bradley needs to go somewhere that is media-friendly, which means you can rule out New York, Boston, and Los Angeles. The Cubs would have to eat almost his entire salary, but they could contact Florida about a possible Milton Bradley-for-Jeremy Hermida swap. Hermida, who is arbitration eligible, has been somewhat of a disappointment in his early career. Throwing him in the right field mix against Jake Fox, Reed Johnson, and possibly Tyler Colvin could salvage some of the potential that once followed him.