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Little But Good
by Derek Smart
It's a relatively small event in an offseason where mega-bucks and monster trades are being bandied about with ease like so much idle PTA-style gossip, but while far from earth-shattering, the Cubssigning of John Mabry for their bench is good news indeed.
Mabry's not a great player - if he was, he'd be a starter - but he's a solid reserve who instantly becomes the team's best option for a bat off the bench, as well as having the defensive versatility to play all four corners (although, he's bad enough at third to give Aramis' glove that golden glow).
He does a couple of things well - namely hitting for some power while walking at an acceptable rate - while giving his manager the flexibility to not only use him as a pinch hitter, but spot start him for more than one man on the diamond who might be in need of some rest. He's exactly the sort of player that teams should have on their bench, and he's exactly the sort of reserve the Cubs have lacked of late.
The report is that he's being paid $1M for his services, and while that might be a little high, quibbling with that figure in light of the nearly $1.6M the club has doled out to Jose Macias for being absolutely appalling over the last two years seems petty.
In fact, one of the glorious side effects of this deal might be the addition by subtraction that would be the release of Macias. My goodness, the acquisition of a solid bench component and the banishment of Jose Macias, all in one fell swoop? Be still my beating heart!