NL Central Live Chat
 
10:59
Tim Dierkes: 
As we lead up to the Winter Meetings, it's time for the last of our divisional chats. Hit me up with all your NL Central questions.
Friday November 30, 2012 10:59 Tim Dierkes
11:00
[Comment From Jed HoyerJed Hoyer: ] 
What's next on my agenda?
Friday November 30, 2012 11:00 Jed Hoyer
11:01
Tim Dierkes: 
I can't speak to the order, but I imagine the Cubs intend to address the bullpen, and perhaps add veterans to safeguard at third base and center field. I also think they'd like to continue adding rotation depth, though MLB free agents may be reluctant to sign on with a team that already has five SPs.
Friday November 30, 2012 11:01 Tim Dierkes
11:01
[Comment From GuestGuest: ] 
what will the cardinals do at the winter meetings. i would love a nice bat on the bench. need to beef that baby up
Friday November 30, 2012 11:01 Guest
11:02
Tim Dierkes: 
Yes, that's on the agenda...maybe a Scott Hairston, Brent Lillibridge, Ryan Raburn type. Beyond that it's just finding the right lefty reliever. Sean Burnett is the Rolls Royce and will require an Affeldt deal or better. Otherwise they can grab a second-tier FA or hit up a team like the Red Sox or Astros about a trade.
Friday November 30, 2012 11:02 Tim Dierkes
11:02
[Comment From billybilly: ] 
Are the Reds now going to sign Bourn? the Nats got Span, the Braves got Upton, so the market is dying down. I think Reds have the best shot now.
Friday November 30, 2012 11:02 billy
11:03
Tim Dierkes: 
No, I don't consider the Reds the favorite for Bourn. Broxton already seems to put them over a $90MM payroll, and Bourn is a Scott Boras client who probably expects to exceed B.J. Upton's 5/75 deal.
Friday November 30, 2012 11:03 Tim Dierkes
11:03
[Comment From Will UWill U: ] 
Who are the cardinals going to get at short for next year?
Friday November 30, 2012 11:03 Will U
11:04
Tim Dierkes: 
Well, Furcal is under contract for a decent amount. They do have the prospect depth to say "screw it" and just go for Asdrubal or Andrus anyway. Or, just get a decent Plan B like Sean Rodriguez or Marco Scutaro.
Friday November 30, 2012 11:04 Tim Dierkes
11:04
[Comment From Wayward EerWayward Eer: ] 
What is next for the Pirates? Can they find a right handed outfield bat, or another back of the rotation starter?
Friday November 30, 2012 11:04 Wayward Eer
11:05
Tim Dierkes: 
I don't see them being all that aggressive on the outfield front, but then again, I didn't foresee the Russell Martin signing either. I think the Bucs are a lock to bring in at least one veteran SP. Carlos Villanueva would be a good fit.
Friday November 30, 2012 11:05 Tim Dierkes
11:05
[Comment From Doug melvinDoug melvin: ] 
What is my final contract offer to Ryan Dempster going to have to be to get it done?
Friday November 30, 2012 11:05 Doug melvin
11:07
Tim Dierkes: 
Something like $42MM over three years could get it done, maybe a touch less if he's really into the Midwest idea. I can see Dempster taking a bit less on salary, but if I'm him I'm holding out for that third year.
Friday November 30, 2012 11:07 Tim Dierkes
11:07
[Comment From JimJim: ] 
Could Chone Figgins be someone that the Cubs are looking at as a 3rd base option?
Friday November 30, 2012 11:07 Jim
11:07
Tim Dierkes: 
He does fit the bill as the type of no-risk veteran they can throw into the Spring Training mix and then discard at any point thereafter. Whereas if you sign a Keppinger or an Eric Chavez, that requires an MLB contract and guaranteed millions.
Friday November 30, 2012 11:07 Tim Dierkes
11:07
[Comment From JonJon: ] 
Keep hearing the FA's are too expensive so where do the Reds find their leadoff hitter?
Friday November 30, 2012 11:07 Jon
11:10
Tim Dierkes: 
Denard Span would've been a great pickup, though it would have required Robert Stephenson or Tony Cingrani to start. Cheap FAs include Nate McLouth or Andres Torres, or cheaper still would be Figgins or Nyjer Morgan on a minor league deal. Via trade they could look at Choo, Fowler, Crisp, Gerardo Parra, or DeJesus, who are leadoff hitters to varying degrees and do make decent (if not Victorino) money.
Friday November 30, 2012 11:10 Tim Dierkes
11:10
[Comment From cOrrycOrry: ] 
Do you envision the Reds trading Leake and or/ Stubbs this offseason?
Friday November 30, 2012 11:10 cOrry
11:11
Tim Dierkes: 
There is a good chance of both being dealt. It's a way to clear about $6MM in payroll, and each still has positive trade value.
Friday November 30, 2012 11:11 Tim Dierkes
11:11
[Comment From seansean: ] 
ichiro a cardinal?
Friday November 30, 2012 11:11 sean
11:11
Tim Dierkes: 
Their outfield seems set.
Friday November 30, 2012 11:11 Tim Dierkes
11:11
[Comment From BrianBrian: ] 
I know its unlikely but for fun what type of package does it take for the cubs to get stanton? Baez, Almora and Mcnutt?
Friday November 30, 2012 11:11 Brian
11:13
Tim Dierkes: 
I do think an offer of a pair of top 50 prospects would at least give the Marlins pause. But I think they'd want a better pitching prospect as the deal's centerpiece. Nor do I think the Cubs should tear up the farm system right now, since Stanton's 2013 season could be useless if the team doesn't contend.
Friday November 30, 2012 11:13 Tim Dierkes
11:13
[Comment From GuestGuest: ] 
If the Pirates trade Hanrahan, who will close?
Friday November 30, 2012 11:13 Guest
11:15
Tim Dierkes: 
I imagine someone from outside the organization, or they could reallocate some of the money toward Grilli and be one of few teams offering him a chance to pitch the ninth. But I don't picture the Pirates moving Hanrahan to give the closing job to Chris Resop or Jared Hughes, especially after a "win now" signal like the Martin signing.
Friday November 30, 2012 11:15 Tim Dierkes
11:15
[Comment From GuntherGunther: ] 
What Staring Pitchers can you see the Brewers going after to solidify their rotation? Do you think they will try to bring Marcum back as his asking price goes down?
Friday November 30, 2012 11:15 Gunther
11:16
Tim Dierkes: 
They don't seem to be all that interested in Marcum, and I don't think his asking price will come too far down. If lesser guys are getting six mil, he can get 2/20 or 3/24 (or 1/11 if he prefers that route). Brewers will probably look at Dempster, EJax, Blanton, Brett Myers, maybe trade targets like Vargas or Nolasco.
Friday November 30, 2012 11:16 Tim Dierkes
11:16
[Comment From GuestGuest: ] 
Does it make sense for the Brewers to look at guys like Jurrjens and Lannan..cheaper than other options and some upside potentially?
Friday November 30, 2012 11:16 Guest
11:17
Tim Dierkes: 
It makes sense if the Brewers do that independent of pursuing one of the names above. Because a big goal with this rotation need is innings and perhaps veteran leadership, and those likely non-tenders don't provide that like Dempster would.
Friday November 30, 2012 11:17 Tim Dierkes
11:17
[Comment From Neal HuntingtonNeal Huntington: ] 
Did I just waste 17 million dollars of my limited resources on Russell Martin or will he get back on track after posting 2 years straight of sub par battling stat line?
Friday November 30, 2012 11:17 Neal Huntington
11:19
Tim Dierkes: 
It's taken me a while to come around to the idea of the Martin signing not being so bad. He probably is worth about $8.5 mil a year in this baseball economy, and decent catchers are hard to find. An exec I talked to today called Mike McKenry's receiving skills "terrible" and doubts his bat, so they really didn't have a viable starting catcher to guide their rotation. I don't think Huntington expects Martin to "get back on track." More like stay healthy, do his thing behind the dish, and keep an OPS of .700.
Friday November 30, 2012 11:19 Tim Dierkes
11:19
[Comment From PJMinNYCPJMinNYC: ] 
How real is Josh Hamilton to Milwaukee? I know he has the "Narron Connection" but he doesn't pitch, so why would Melvin even entertain the possibility?
Friday November 30, 2012 11:19 PJMinNYC
11:20
Tim Dierkes: 
Stranger things have happened, but I've never bought into it. Melvin has indicated it won't happen, it's entirely un-Brewers. And as you alluded, this team led the NL in SLG but has major pitching needs. You really have to stretch to find a reasonable scenario where the Brewers sign Josh Hamilton.
Friday November 30, 2012 11:20 Tim Dierkes
11:21
[Comment From DaveDave: ] 
What are your thoughts on the Cubs and a timeline for a return to contention?
Friday November 30, 2012 11:21 Dave
11:22
Tim Dierkes: 
They've already gotten more leeway than the Yankees, Red Sox, or Phillies ever could from their fanbases. Having seen so many abrupt turnarounds, this team needs to be good in 2014. One more year to stockpile prospects and clear the books, and then it's time to go big.
Friday November 30, 2012 11:22 Tim Dierkes
11:22
[Comment From ZackZack: ] 
How about Edwin Jackson or Stephen Drew for the Pirates? I assume they won't trade for Upton.
Friday November 30, 2012 11:22 Zack
11:23
Tim Dierkes: 
After EJax turned down a multiyear offer from the Pirates to take one year from the Nats last year, I don't see them going down that road again. Drew is a bit more viable, but they're already on the hook for $5.5MM with Barmes.
Friday November 30, 2012 11:23 Tim Dierkes
11:24
[Comment From Dusty BDusty B: ] 
Does David Price make the Cards World Series favorites?
Friday November 30, 2012 11:24 Dusty B
11:25
Tim Dierkes: 
That would be fair to say. How do you feel about losing Oscar Taveras and Shelby Miller or Carlos Martinez? If I'm the Rays, I need an offer of that caliber or I just keep him.
Friday November 30, 2012 11:25 Tim Dierkes
11:25
[Comment From Kreg millerKreg miller: ] 
What do you make of the Cubs rotation right now? They add Scott Feldman and Scott Baker... are they going to both take up a spot in that rotation, or will they shop in free-agency for a big arm?
Friday November 30, 2012 11:25 Kreg miller
11:26
Tim Dierkes: 
I suppose if the Cubs want to go after Shaun Marcum, they can guarantee him a rotation spot and let those two duke it out with Travis Wood if everyone is healthy. Alternately they could find that sixth starter in a trade, where he'd have no say in it, or add depth with the Carl Pavanos of the world.
Friday November 30, 2012 11:26 Tim Dierkes
11:26
[Comment From Billy HamiltonBilly Hamilton: ] 
Look at my OBP... I am ready to be roaming centerfield in Great American? Right?
Friday November 30, 2012 11:26 Billy Hamilton
11:26
Tim Dierkes: 
The consensus seems to be that he's a year off.
Friday November 30, 2012 11:26 Tim Dierkes
11:27
[Comment From Wayward EerWayward Eer: ] 
The closer market seems a little slow right now but what kind of value would Hanrahan have? Could it get you a decent bat?
Friday November 30, 2012 11:27 Wayward Eer
11:28
Tim Dierkes: 
Well, Hanrahan could be marketed simply as a strong late-inning RP, even to teams with established closers. The Angels, Yankees, Tigers, or Rangers might like a reliever like that. If you can't get a solid bat you shouldn't do it.
Friday November 30, 2012 11:28 Tim Dierkes
11:28
[Comment From WarlockWarlock: ] 
As Kyle Lohse's asking price goes down is there a chance the Cards make a play for him on a 3-year deal?
Friday November 30, 2012 11:28 Warlock
11:28
Tim Dierkes: 
Really hard to picture...I think Lohse's asking price will trend upward unless something goes wrong for Boras (which technically has happened before).
Friday November 30, 2012 11:28 Tim Dierkes
11:29
[Comment From TylerTyler: ] 
Do you see the Reds possibly trying to deal for Michael Morse if the Nats resign LaRoche? And if so, what pieces do you think it would take to make it happen?
Friday November 30, 2012 11:29 Tyler
11:30
Tim Dierkes: 
That's a reasonable trade match-up. I don't think the Reds would be willing to move any of their top five prospects for a year of Morse, but Leake could certainly be on the table.
Friday November 30, 2012 11:30 Tim Dierkes
11:30
[Comment From Ian StewartIan Stewart: ] 
Should I renew my lease in Chicago?
Friday November 30, 2012 11:30 Ian Stewart
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