Well now that we have the top of the organization locked up for good or bad, how are the Tribune bean counters going to approach the budget? Changes are going to be made and to what extent an increase in budget is necessary, Hendry has to make his case that "whatever it takes" is the attitude the Tribune should have. The Tribune has deemed Hendry 'The Man," so to tie his hands with a limited payroll would be the ultimate slap in the face of every loyal Cub fan.
Here is a list of the contracts for 2008 and 2009 for the major players on the Cubs.
As you can see the back loaded contracts are increasing the payroll even without the resigning of three relief pitchers, Howry, Lieber and Wood, and the one starter, Dempster. Of course the ancillary contracts of the rest of the team will remain somewhat static and the main increase of the budget will come from Hendry's acquisitions through trades and free agency.
As I've noted in previous posts, even if next years pitching staff performed as well as last years, the Cubs have to deal with the lack of productive LHB's.
So here is your chance to play GM and tell us all what you would do. I'll post my thoughts later.