Don’t Buy a Grill on July 4th

I bought a grill on Independence Day. Actually, I bought it on July 3rd, but it was going to be assembled and ready for pickup on Independence Day. That was a big mistake…. Picture the mall on the day after Thanksgiving….utter chaos at the hardware store….unhelpful sales associates who are bitter that they are working on a holiday….and since this nightmare takes place in Arizona, loading the grill onto your minivan in 110 degree heat.

In hindsight, it was very obvious to me that I should have known better. Just when I was beating myself up for being such a fool, I started to think of all the obvious and practical actions that have not been taken by Jim Hendry and the Cubs, and I suddenly felt a whole lot better. Can this season be saved, and can Dusty Baker lead the turnaround? You know better….

A Door Closes….

What door you ask? The door that leads out of Wrigley Field and straight to the unemployment line. This is what I hope the future holds, and soon, for Dusty Baker and his coaches, the Dusty Bunch. This should also be the closing of an emotional chapter in Cubs history: the Wood-Prior era. As glorious as this era was in 2003, it has been equally heart-breaking in 2004-2006. For the sake of all that is good and holy in this world, please hope that Hendry doesn’t bet on Wood and Prior being two of the five starters, and being healthy leading into next season. Whether it is through trades now, or in the offseason, or through some seasoning of some of our rookie pitchers, the Cubs need to go into 2007 with a better plan than:

A. Prior and Wood will be healthy
B. Rusch and Williams and some rookies will hold down the fort, if Prior and Wood aren’t healthy

A Door Opens….

Under a good coach, the talent of the Cubs farm system could be unleashed. This would be a fresh and new feeling on the North Side: actually seeing our prospects prosper locally, and not for other teams, ala Corey Patterson. If Hendry stubbornly refuses to trade his top prospects, than the Cubs have to start getting production out of them. A good example is Rich Hill. Hill is lights out in the minors, but looks inept under the Dusty Bunch in the majors. Time to give Hill some better mentors, or trade him while his value is decent….just don’t expect Dusty to help him reach his potential, because it isn’t going to happen. If/when the Dusty Bunch hits the road, a new chapter can start to be written for the Cubs, and some of the main characters could be named Guzman, Murton, and Hill.

Thy name is Obviousman….

Here are a few statements made by Obviousman. Obviousman is always neutral and unbiased, and speaks only the truth. Feel free to add your own Obviousman comments as you see fit. These statements speak for themselves, and if you feel rage, anger, or frustration as you read them, you are not alone:

If walks are bad for our pitchers to give up, they should be good for our hitters to get.
Dusty claims walks “clog up the bases” for the guys that can run, which makes no sense.
When players underachieve under Dusty, and improve under other coaches, the reason is the quality of coaching.
Glendon Rusch is not a quality starter in the Major Leagues, but Hendry doesn’t want to cut him and eat his contract.
The Arizona Diamondbacks cut Russ Ortiz despite owing him tens of millions of dollars the next few years, because they wanted to do what was best for the team.

Jerome Williams, Rich Hill, Angel Guzman, Jae Kuk Ryu, and Carlos Marmol have all performed poorly under Dusty.
Sean Marshall listens hard to Greg Maddux, and he is the only rookie pitcher having any success.

Dusty has an excuse for everything.

Jim Hendry really still thinks he did a good job this past offseason.

I am in limbo….how about you?

I am completely confused, CCO Readers! I am anxiously awaiting the firing of the Dusty Bunch, but I also want to see my Cubbies start playing well again. I am conflicted internally, because if the team does really well, I worry that Dusty will keep his job. On the other hand, I feel like a traitor for hoping that the Cubs do so miserably that Hendry can’t possibly justify holding onto Baker for another minute. The reality is that I truly can’t stand the lame politics that are keeping the Dusty Bunch in power. It is all about Hendry/Tribsters saving face, and nothing to do with what is best for the team, and that is that saddest part of this entire mess of a season. Any good CEO or small business owner or video store manager would fire an employee (or employees) that was detrimental to the success of the business. Dusty can not manage this team well. Our record proves it. The fans, who keep this company in business, do not want to deal with Dusty anymore, and are sick of his excuses. There is not a single good reason to keep Dusty at this point. He has never lured top free agents like we thought. He is lousy at developing young talent. He can’t compensate for injuries….and he can’t take responsibility for anything.

This may be the last time I really write about Dusty….there is nothing more to say. So I hope he is fired soon, so I have something fun to write about, and a bright future to ponder for my Cubs. Until next time, CCO Readers, keep the faith that things just have to get better someday, and let’s go Cubs!!!

Quote of the Day

"Every strike brings me closer to the next home run." - Babe Ruth