According to Jerry Crasnick of ESPN.com, the Giants and Cubs discussed a swap of Aaron Rowand for Kosuke Fukudome.
Some may classify this as a potential swap of bad contracts, but to equate Fukudome to Rowand is nuts. Keep in mind, Rowand is still owed $24 million (!) over the next two seasons while Fukudome will make $13.5 million in the final year of his deal next season.
While Rowand is still a solid defender, he has a meager .225/.277/.370 batting line dating back to the All-Star break of the 2009 season. It’s not a stretch to say that Fukudome has been a disappointment in Chicago, he at least knows how to draw a walk. In fact, his 809 OPS last season was his best since arriving stateside. Take a look at some of the money being tossed around this winter and his contract doesn’t seem so bad anymore. The Cubs would be doing Brian Sabean a tremendous favor to even consider such a swap.
Fortunately for Cubs fans, Crasnick calls this one a “real long shot.”
Fellow second basemen Javier Baez of the Cubs and D.J. LeMahieu of the Rockies got into a disagreement in the top of the third inning of Sunday’s game at Coors Field over sign-stealing.
LeMahieu reached on a fielder’s choice ground out, then advanced to second base on Charlie Blackmon‘s single. While Nolan Arenado and Trevor Story were batting, Baez was concerned that LeMahieu was relaying the Cubs’ signs to his teammates. Baez decided to stand in front of LeMahieu to block any information he might have been giving to Arenado and Story. LeMahieu got irritated and the two jawed at each other for a bit. Umpires Vic Carapazza and Greg Gibson had to intervene to tell Baez to knock it off.
There has always been a back-and-forth with alleged sign-stealing. As long as teams aren’t using technology to steal signs, it’s fair game for players to relay information to their teammates about the opposing team’s signs. Last year, MLB determined the Red Sox went against the rules and used technology — an Apple watch in this case — to steal signs from the Yankees. Other teams in the past have been accused of using binoculars from the bullpen to steal signs. In this particular case with Baez and LeMahieu, there was no foul play going on, just Baez trying to make the Rockies cede what he perceived to be their slight competitive advantage.
The Cubs went on to beat the Rockies 9-7 on Sunday.