-- Jaime G., Universal City, Texas
Destroying the Cubs? Not sure how you destroy something that was not working in the first place. It would be great if Ricketts spent like the Yankees, but unless he gets his own network that’s unlikely. Most Cubs fans I’ve heard from agree with the rebuild, even if they don’t always believe in the moves that Theo and
have made in their first year. This will be an important offseason, so stay tuned. The pressure is on Theo, Jed,
and Ricketts to show us the plan is succeeding. They’re pretty good at dismantling. Now let’s see if they’re good at actually rebuilding.
-- Neil L., Brownsburg, Ind.
It’s safe to say that Jackson and Vitters have looked overmatched in their first stint, though the same could be said of
last year in San Diego. The Cubs knew they would have some struggles early, but I don’t think anyone envisioned both hitting under .200 with so many strikeouts. Both probably need more time at Iowa next year and hopefully they will improve, as Rizzo certainly did with his half-season at Triple-A this year.
Dale Sveum seems to be a truly good man, an excellent manager and a great student of the game. He is facing tremendous challenges and displays poise and class while doing so. As a college professor who deals every day with young men about the same age as the young balplayers whom Sveum manages, I do feel I can offer some insight as to the lack of focus issues he has been plagued by.
His statement about not understanding why these young guys act like such knuckleheads is a generational problem. I see it every day. Five minutes after I tell my class to put their phones and I-Pads away, I will see some young man texting. One minute after giving detailed instructions, some young guy will ask a question about what I just covered a minute ago. The women rarely do these things. They are years ahead of the men in maturity. The men who have been in the military never do these things. They understand the meaning of self-discipline and focus. Dale is quoted as saying, "it's not one of those things where you're dogging it." The truth is they are dogging it. Failing to pay attention is no different than failing to hit the cut-off man or letting a slow grounder roll through your legs. The trouble with inattention is that it does cause harm. The fact that the harm was unintentional does not mitigate the damage. I would respectfully suggest that Sveum take a more direct approach with these brain farters. These young guys are not bad people. It's just that no one has ever taught them about the importance of self-discipline. Dale or one of his coaches needs to engage in some stern parenting skills.
-- Ross A. Olmos PhD, Associate Professor, Criminal Justice, Harper College, Palatine
That was certainly an interesting take on the subject, and hopefully Sveum will read it. I’m no expert on this generation, or brain farts, but I do believe the proliferation of smart phones and I-Pads in the clubhouse has reduced the attention span of modern-day players, not to mention the camaraderie, since many are on their phones or computers when they could be conversing about the upcoming game or life in general. The specific moments Sveum was referring to as "brain farts" -- missing signs, losing track of outs, etc. -- can be corrected by learning to maintain focus. As for
getting picked off second while Sveum said he was “gazing at the stars,” that was just an inexcusable brain fart that should’ve led to a day on the bench.
-- Frank U., Chicago
I’m not sure what the Cubs have in mind for Stewart, but based on his absence from the team since his wrist surgery in June and the fact he’s arbitration eligible, non-tendering him seems like a likely option. Third base was a definite black hole this year, and needs to be addressed in the offseason.
-- David H., Chicago
I don’t think LaHair has lost any confidence in himself, though pitchers have handled him pretty well since July so it’s not just a minor slump. Sveum obviously lost confidence in him, or else he’d be playing once in a while. Trade value would be minimal at his age, though the Cubs should try to find a new home for him if possible. He’d probably be better off in new surroundings in 2013.
-- Bert, Elkridge, Md.
Vitters has gotten plenty of playing time since his call-up. It’s not so much a love affair with Valbuena as the lack of any offensive consistency at all from Vitters. I can’t blame Sveum on this.
Now that the Cubs have a Single-A team in Kane County and a Triple-A team in Chicago. why not make it a clean sweep and put a Double-A team at the stadium in Schaumburg?
-- Dennis, Woodstock, Ga.
That’s cold, man.
There's been so much talk lately about the replacements and how embarrassing they've been. And I agree. So are the Cubs gonna wipe out this roster of replacement players and get some real major leaguers for 2013?
-- Will K., Chesterton, Ind.