Well, yesterday I attempted to breakdown free agent signings and resigning of players. It only leads me to believe that when Hendry makes modest moves he does well, however, when he tries to make a big splash in the free agent market it seems to backfire.
Now, I am going to try and focus on his trade history as GM for the Cubs. I won’t feature every trade just ones that I think that help define Hendry. Hope you enjoy!
I’ll begin in December of 2002. Hendry traded Todd Hundley and Chad Hermansen for Mark Grudzielanek and Eric Karros. This was an excellent trade. Both players helped the Cubs in 2003 make the playoffs.
July 2003. Jose Hernandez, Matt Bruback and Bobby Hill were traded for Aramis Ramirez, Kenny Lofton and cash. Another excellent trade as both of these players helped lead us to the playoffs in 2003 and Aramis is still with the team. Kenny Lofton became a free agent and I really wanted the Cubs to sign him, but we didn’t. Oh well, still a great trade!
November 2003. Hendry made another excellent trade this time moving Hee-Seop Choi for Derrek Lee. Lee quickly became one of my favorite players for the Cubs and he still is.
December 2003. Traded Damian Miller and cash for Michael Barrett. This trade worked out real well for Hendry until Barrett and Zambrano came to blows. We did manage to get three consecutive years of 16 homers from Barrett before he was traded to the Padres in 2007.
December 2005. Sergio Mitre, Ricky Nolasco and Renyel Pinto were traded away for Juan Pierre. Terrible trade in my honest opinion. We should have resigned Lofton to play CF after 2003 and bat leadoff. Instead, we traded away 3 pitchers for Pierre who played one season with the Cubs then signed with the Dodgers as a free agent.
November 2007. Traded Jacque Jones for Omar Infante. Bet you didn’t know Infante was a Cub! Well, he didn’t last long because he was traded less than a month later along with Will Ohman for Jose Ascanio. Then we traded Ascanio in 2009 along with Josh Harrison and Kevin Hart for John Grabow and Tom Gorzelanny. Maybe we should have held onto Infante to play secondbase. This one’s a tossup. I’ll let you decide for yourself.
December 2008. Very unpopular at the time by trading Mark DeRosa for Jeff Stevens, Chris Archer and John Gaub. Both Stevens and Gaub pitched in the majors for the Cubs in 2010 and Archer was one of our best starting pitchers in the minors. This may end up being a good move by Hendry. Still too early to tell.
December 2009. Milton Bradley for Carlos Silva. GREAT TRADE! “Meltdown” Bradley was a terrible free agent signing, but Hendry turned around and traded him for Carlos Silva and his bad contract. The good news……after the 2011 season we can buy out Silva for $2 million!
So, that’s a quick summary of trades that help define Jim Hendry as a General Manager. If history tells us anything, I look for Hendry to make a move before the new year. I see us trading or signing for another starting pitcher soon. Anyway, I think Hendry has made some good trades for us and maybe I need to be more patient with our GM. He’s done pretty good with his trades. We may need to limit him to modest free agent signings though!