Despite all those HORRIBLE contracts, Cubbies not dead in 2011, 2012

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It’s very rare that this site does the whole excerpt-a-piece and tell you to read the whole thing post. But then again, this is no ordinary Baseball Prospectus article. Christina Kahrl’s “Prospectus Perspective: A Wrigley Rebuild?” is a must read for Chicago Cubs and MLB fans alike.  She lays out the case for how all that bad money the Cubs front office has thrown after bad money after bad money doesn’t doom them in the NL Central like you may believe it does.

It’s an adjective, metaphor and imagery-rich article, and she really caught my attention when I heard 670 The Score’s Dan Bernstein reading it on the air; especially this line

After all, money will still be made, Recession or no, because there are still enough trust funders knocking around Lakeview, the Corn Belt’s Riviera, to keep their sozzled watch with semi-indifference.

Wow. As a Lakeview East resident, with a Lake Shore Drive mailing address no less, I guess I really have to finally acknowledge the idea that everyday I’m surrounded by a lost generation with old money roots. Thanks Christina! Now that you’ve made me acutely aware that so many of my neighbors are indolent in the insouciance of their existential being. This revelation should help me greater appreciate the fact that my home is in actuality a bacchanalian refuge, an upscale mecca for the manor-born to live out their purposeless lives!

Anyways, on to the Cubs and the article:

A couple choice paragraphs:

Worse yet, because of the way these deals are structured, it’s hard to suggest that any of these expensive veterans are really tradable. Acquiring Ramirez guarantees his 2012 option year. Soriano, Zambrano, and Fukudome have no-trade clauses, and while no-trade doesn’t mean no trading whatsoever, making any deal involves compensating and cajoling the potentially dealt. Fukudome might seem the most obviously movable of these otherwise sessile signees, but he’s the guy with a deal larded up with expensive extras he’s unlikely to dicker over.

Now, of course this particular Chicken Little was hatched months, nay, years ago, so all of this is old news. And it might seem to be cause for glacial do-nothingism: the Cubs are stuck with this crew, so they can sail this lot to the edge of oblivion and beyond. After all, money will still be made, Recession or no, because there are still enough trust funders knocking around Lakeview, the Corn Belt’s Riviera, to keep their sozzled watch with semi-indifference. But is that really the way things will play out, providing further fodder for the cynics who suggest that this is a club satisfied with box office success? I don’t really think so, not unless the Ricketts family wants its newly acquired stewardship defined by decline, and not when GM Jim Hendry has his own job security to defend. Looking at those combined circumstances, cast against the backdrop of this year’s bids of the Reds and Cardinals to rule the National League Central’s roost, and you can see a Cubs club that shouldn’t consider itself as DOA in 2011, not then, not now, and certainly not across the intervening winter.

Read the whole thing here

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