Category Archives: Cubs

Been away for a while

I have been away for a while watching all these Chicago teams excepth the Blackhawks self destruct. Since I last posted, the Bulls bowed out in the playoffs, which was at least a growth experience for the young players left on the team today. The White Sox pulled another Ozzie Guillen driven schizophrenic el foldo at he end of the season. The Cubs never played right and now need to back up the truck. The Blackhawks won the Stanley Cup and then proceeded to dismantle a lot of their team and will be rebuilding again for a couple years. And the Bears….  You may just read my past posts and you will have the same old, same old Bears. Lovie loved a vanilla preseason, the team started out of shape (but so was half the NFL, because they followed Lovie’s lead and refused to get prepared in the preseason) but despite no offensive line to speak of, is still in the race, mostly due to the other teams like Dallas, Minnesota, Arizona, Carolina, etc. also not getting in shape for the season.  My team by team capsule is as follows:

Chicago White Sox

Bye, bye Paul Konerko and maybe AJ. Starting pitching looking good, but they can’t make up their minds on a closer and are going to let some good relievers go with no real replacements from the minors. We need a third baseman, first baseman and a bench upgrade because we are sure to let go one or two outfielders. I will wait until Kenny makes his signings and trades, but know that it won’t be real upgrades, just churning of journeymen. Until there is some upgrades, second place may even be a stretch.

Chicago Cubs

They new manager looks like an upgrade from dimentia-challenged Lou Pinella. Carlos Zambrano is Carlos Zambrano, a question mark. They have a couple of good youngsters, but will be losing some veterans, have no first baseman, should lose Aramis but can’t see the forest for the trees. They need some pitching help and upgrades at most positions. Second and short look secure as well as catcher, everywhere else is a question mark. Let’s see what they do over the winter. Not encouraging right now. A new manager can only win a handful of games and the players need to play.

Blackhawks

Our only champion. Kudos to the former gm now elsewhere for assembling the team that won. The new geniuses will have to try to match him. Let’s wait and see before we make a rash assumption.

Bulls

They look pretty good so far, but obviously at least one player short of contention for a title. Boozer will help, but he will be replacing Taj Gibson who is playing as well as Boozer can. We need and off guard. We need Luol Deng to step even further up. The choice of guards in the free agent pool was iffy at best. Brewer is hopeless. Bogans was a flop in Orlando and will be a flop here. I wish we still had Heinrich or Gordon and forgot about Lebron the megamind. Playoffs will be a struggle. Maybe second round.

Bears

Watching the Bears is like going to the psychiatrist. You gotta talk it out to convince yourself to do it again. ‘Nuff said.

Sho(u)t of the Day 9/1

Well the White Sox needed no “White Flag Trade” to prove again they have quit on us. Paul Konerko can talk a good game but his “leadership” stinks. Jermaine Dye is in a funk over Rios and should be elsewhere, not in this lineup they way he is hitting. Becham, Rios, and Getz are pressing trying to save the team, but the  veterans (all except AJ) have gone on vacation. We ought to shut down Carlos Quentin until his foot allows power to get those fly balls  out. Bring up the Danks’s, Flowers’s and Mitchell’s of the minors and play ’em. They can’t hit any worse. Bring up some pitchers and let them blow games instead of Linebrink, Pena (a waste), newly lost Bobby Jenks. If they are injured they need to sit, Ozzie is a VERY poor manager that way. Part of managing is playin the hot hand and using the players at 100% health. They may surprise you.

The Cubs also joined the blow the game, blow the season syndrome the Sox perfected, wrapping up a gift to the Astros, of all teams. More mis managing…… where does it end?

What happened sportswriters?

RosenBlog: Beer-tosser almost as embarrassing as the Cubs

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Cubs causing long faces

Cubs causing long faces

I have not commented on the Cubs because before the season started I said I won’t. If you go into my past blogs, you will see I called out the sportswriters for anointing the Cubs automatic division winners without a pitch being thrown. I now challenge them to own up and say at least that the Cubs have issues. What upset me was on all the talk shows and especially on Chicago Tribune Live before the season, every guest writer on that show and most on the SCORE or AM1000 were declaring the White Sox having many issues, while the Cubs had few and they were automatic winners of the Central Division of the NL. I also remember them saying that St. Louis has no chance in a weak division. They wailed over the White Sox issues, which I acknowledge there was, but the White Sox were able to address most issues and continue to address them. Now the writers are calling for benching of Soriano, shaking up an already shook up lineup and now, calling out the fans. When things go wrong, Cub fans blame the fans. It may be time for Cub fans, especially the ones who declare themselves to be in the press, to chill out. I think the Cubs will still win their division, but my feeling is that their manager is panicking and he also seems to be a little senile in his reasoning when he tries to explain himself. Cub fans should stop drinking and carousing in the stands and start cheering for their team. Tossing their spare drinks in a drunken rage helps no one. C’mon Cub fans. Bring your team home.

Who needs another prima donna?

Prima Donna Jake Peavy has rejected trade to the White Sox because he didn’t want to play for Ozzie Guillen, or face American League hitters in a “hitters ballpark”.  Welll who the hell needs him? Anybody that skittish belongs in San Diego on a losing team. This should be a warning for the Cubs as well, but they seem intent on overspending anyhow. Anyway, we need some hitters. Gavin Floyd will come around and I like the pitchers we would have given up in this trade.

Just found this great post on Comcast Sportsnet by Chuck Garfien:

Jake, it’s your call

And now that Peavy has reportedly rejected the deal, I have to get something off my chest.

If it’s true that what prevented Peavy from coming to the Sox was his concern for playing in the American League, specifically a home run park like U.S. Cellular Field, then you know what…forget him. Let the National League have him.

What’s the problem? Scared???

Yes, teams do score more runs at U.S. Cellular Field. But you know what? One of those teams is the Chicago White Sox, who for the last decade have been pounding the ball into submission on the Southside. They’ll give you more than enough runs of support.

Unless you were pitching today. Or last week.

But the offense will come around. Especially now that the summer weather is here.

And Jake, if you happened to notice, April, May, parts of June, and most importantly, October, can be quite cool here in Chicago, giving the pitcher quite the advantage. Just ask Mark Buehrle.

The Sox ace has pitched for the Sox since 2000. His career ERA on the road is 3.96. His ERA at home drops to 3.61.

And the National League hasn’t exactly been a safe haven for your ERA either. Check out your career ERAs in these N.L. parks:

Chase Field: 5.78
Shea Stadium: 4.65
Coors Field: 4.59
Turner Field: 4.38
AT&T: 4.06
Wrigley Field: 3.86

Look, not everyone can pitch in the cavernous Petco Park, where you have enjoyed a 2.71 ERA.

You’re going to have to take your lumps somewhere. The Sox were hoping it was going to be here. Oh well.

So I guess it’s back to the drawing board for Peavy and the Padres. Not to mention Kenny Williams, who is likely already back in his bunker, possibly plotting his next move.

Unfortunately, he won’t be able to top this. Too bad.

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Great post

Good Luck Cubs

Just thought I’d wish the Cubs well after their successful opening game when they beat Roy Oswalt – no small feat. I hope they have a successful season and I will comment along the way. From what I hear on all the Chicago media TV and radio, I don’t even have to follow the season, since it is a foregone conclusion the Cubs have already clinched the playoffs.

loulou

I guess Sweet Lou has the season under control and we will talk again in October. Let me know if anybody has any Cub issues to discuss. I listen to the SCORE, and ESPN 1000 celebrities and they say only the White Sox have issues. I watch COMCAST Sportsnet and the conclusion is the Cubs are in the playoffs. So this is the first season I can remember where we know the winner of at least one division in April. Seems like I also was told the Yankees were a shoo-in the last three seasons. But alas, what do those east coast guys know. Chicago guys are smarter. So, see you in October!

Comment on Mike Downey Cubs column

Zambrano injured?

Zambrano injured?

“If his labrum is torn, if he can’t accompany the Cubs where we expected them to go, a pretty decent chance exists that this team will not get there at all.

Yanking away their best pitcher really would indicate to the Cubs that the gods of baseball have it in for them. Hard to say why, but somebody up there doesn’t like them.” Mike Downey 9/4/08

What drama! This is the biggest load of hogwash I’ve ever read. Even smacks of wierd paranoia. The Cubs have built what they believe is a championship team capable of winning the world series. If the loss of one player., no matter how talented, stops them, then there is more at work than lack of talent. They would not be a team, able to overcome adversity. And wouldn’t deserve the prize anyhow.

The White Sox lost two closers and a starter in their championship season, and somehow, found a rookie, Bobby Jenks, and got one big inning out of their fifth starter Orlando Hernandez to overcome their adversity and win the prize. The St. Louis Cardinals won without their top pitcher.

Although a Sox fan, I admire the team the Cubs have assembled this year. The team looks capable. It is the fans and writers that can’t get over this mass hysteria of 100 years without a championship. There were a lot of diehard Sox fans who died without seeing a championship. But their kids and grandkids got to celebrate when the  T-E-A-M went out and won it. When it becomes a team win, and not some mass hysteria over perfection, it becomes Oh, So Sweet.