The Bad News: Thunder Matt Murton is tearing up Spring Training.
Thunder Matt is stuck in a catch-22 of sorts. If he wants to play every day, he's gotta blow people away in Spring Training. But if he does too well in the spring, it will make him a more attractive player to trade for, and his days with the Cubs would be numbered (not that they don't seem to be now).
So yeah, you can stare in awe of Murton's .353 average in the spring, but chances are, other scouts (Hello, Baltimore!) are doing the same.
In other Cubs news, reports are coming in that Piniella is looking at putting Soriano in the 2-hole this year. Steve Stone thinks that it's a pretty clear indicator that Brian Roberts is on his way over from the Orioles. As this trade would send Mark DeRosa to the pine, I don't say I'm in favor of it.
And here's some more bad news: according to the Cubs website, one of the reason Lou wants to bat Soriano second is to protect his legs:
"We want to keep him in the lineup," Piniella said Wednesday. "Last year, he was out a few times with the leg pulls. If you talk to him now, he's 80, 85 percent. Put it this way -- out of the two-hole, it might be easier for him to not have to run as much. We're just going to look at it."
What??? Are you telling me that a year ago, we spent $137 million on a guy because of the power and speed he brings, and 2 years into the deal, we're already having to make adjustments around him not running as much??? Screw that! The speed Soriano brings was part of the reason he was supposedly worth all this money! Take away Soriano's speed, and we've got a guy that hits for a so-so average and about 40 homers a year. So basically, we have Adam Dunn. Awesome.