After the high this team reached before Thanksgiving, I guess it was inevitable. Teams can go on large spending sprees and try to remake a ballclub in one offseason. Reality at some point will hit you smack dab in the face. For many of us the reality hit today with the rumored signing of Jason Marquis (3 years/$21 million).
I think the reality is simple. It's never a good idea to allow a club to fall apart the way MacPhail and Hendry did following 2004. Compound the poor job they did with the major league roster with poor minor league player development and you have a recipe for the desperate moves we have seen this offseason. The Cubs have been forced to overspend for players. The sad part with the recent pitching signings is the Cubs will be saddled with these players for awhile.
Earlier this week the Cubs added Ted Lilly. Today it's Jason Marquis. Nothing makes me want Gil Meche like Jason Marquis! Thus concludes the Cubs offseason shopping spree for the starting rotation. The results are not what we hoped, just days ago. Behind Carlos Zambrano, the Cubs 2007 rotation has no valid number two starter. Here's what they got: Zambrano, Lilly, Hill, Marquis, & Cotts/Marmol/Marshall/Prior (take your pick).
Here we go again. Once again, the Cubs hopes for 2007 involve getting Mark Prior's arm healthy. GULP. Healthy enough so he can take the ball every fifth day. If Prior can get healthy and be the pitcher we saw in 2003, well I like the Cubs chances. But how many times have we said this before? What are the odds that Prior will be healthy and pitch like he did in 2003? Slim and none. The Cubs know this, and that is why they overpaid for two middle of the road pitchers. I don't fault Hendry for getting the additional arms. They needed to do this. I just wish the two middle of the road starters weren't these two.
Oh well, I guess even when you spend money like a drunken sailor, you can't have everything.