Grading The Chicago Cubs Part II

Ted Lilly didn't suck in 2009.  In fact, he was the rotation's most steady force.  You know who did suck in 2009?



Ted Lilly, B+ -- The Cubs' lone All-Star representative won 12 games and led the team with a 1.05 WHIP.  Though he pitched like it in 2009, 2010 is a contract year for Teddy Neversmile.  Expect big things.

Ryan Dempster, B- -- Dempster pitched like someone deserving of a four-year, $52 million extension in the second half where he posted a 6-4 record, 3.15 earned run average, 1.23 WHIP and a 3.95-to-1 strikeout-to-walk ratio.  Demp was also the only Cub starter to throw 200 innings.

Randy Wells, B -- The only thing holding back Wells were his the Nationals, Cardinals, Giants and Rockies where he posted a 1-4 record, 7.29 ERA and allowed 37 hits and 12 walks in 28 1/3 innings (1.72 WHIP).

Rich Harden, C -- Harden's solid second half (4-3, 2.55 ERA, 1.11 WHIP and 88 strikeouts in 67 innings) was not enough to push the Cubs into the playoffs nor was it enough to overlook the fact that he had to be shut down in early September.

Carlos Zambrano, C -- I'm sure Dave Kaplan and Steve Stone would disagree with this grade and give Zambrano a flat-out F.  But how much better could Big Z have been if he would have gotten some support in the 9 no decisions in which he went at least six innings and allowed three runs or less?


Kevin Gregg, F -- See the Kevin Gregg and Kevin Gregg Sucks tags.

Sean Marshall, B -- Limited lefties to a .243 batting average and in a relief role, opposing hitters only hit .257.  Should either be trade bait or left in the bullpen.  As a starter, Marshall was roughed up.

Carlos Marmol, C+ -- Marmol walked and hit too many batters to get a B, but the fact that he excelled in the closer's role balances out his struggles as a set-up man in 2009.

Aaron Heilman, D -- I still can't believe you gave up a game-winning homer to Yadier Molina in the 2006 NLCS.  That still sticks in my craw.

Angel Guzman, B- -- My only advice for Guzman is to quit hurting yourself.  Oh, and to quit hurting Derrek Lee.  Guzman is slated to be Marmol's top set-up man in 2010.  He's also slated for surgery later that season.


Tom Gorzelanny, C -- I want to see more but I fear that you'll pitch more like you did with the Pirates than how you did with the Cubs.

John Grabow, B -- I can't believe you want a three-year deal.  But you did drop your WHIP from 1.50 to 1.24 after joining the Cubs.  Sounds like the kind of guy Jim Hendry would throw lots of money at for no reason.

David Patton, F -- Second worst Rule V draft pick ever.  The worst was the fact that Hendry selected Josh Hamilton only to sell him to the Cincinnati Reds before he blew up with the Rangers.  Not like the Cubs are looking for a slugging left-handed hitting outfielder...

Chad Fox, F -- Waste of a roster spot.

Neal Cotts, F -- See above.

Jason Marquis Luis Vizcaino, Incomplete -- I forgot you were even on the team at one point.

Jeff Samardzija, F -- Report to Halas Hall, immediately!

Jose Ascanio, Kevin Hart, A -- I still cannot believe the Cubs got a pair of warm bodies for these scrubs.  One of Hendry's best moves of the season.

Esmailin Caridad, Justin Berg, Jeff Stevens; Incomplete -- Come back in 2010 and prove you don't suck.