The State of the Union

Every January the President of the United States addresses multiple facets of the government on the “State of the Union.” Each year there is an opportunity to look back and discuss the successes and also a chance to communicate the agenda for the upcoming year. I have taken the liberty to give my state of the Cubs address in this column and, well, there is no need to discuss successes, they really do not exist. So with that said, it is time to look forward and philosophize about what may happen or what should happen. I implore you to post your comments and ideas. We have spent the first half of the year complaining and pointing fingers, but now it is time to move on, so let’s get going.

Shambles does not even begin to describe the first half of the season. I was euphoric when I walked out of Wrigley Field on the late evening of Sunday, April 9th. The Cubs had just swept the Cardinals on Opening Weekend and were 4-1, oh and my boy Lefty, Phil Mickelson, had just won the Masters. Almost three months later Lefty joked away the US Open and the Cubs have given away their season. We have spent the past two months pointing fingers, getting upset, screaming, yelling, crying and feeling helpless because as fans, in the end, we are helpless. I may be only one fan, a damn good looking one albeit, but here are this fan’s thoughts, as well as whether or not I think they will be around for the second half.

Michael Barrett:
What more can you say about Barrett, he is hitting above .300 and provides more emotion that Dusty can fathom. He is a team leader, a devoted player and a success. While wrong, I loved the punch and hoped that it could have motivated this team more.

He will be a Cub at the end of the year.

Derrek Lee:
Well, we all know.

He will be a Cub at the end of the year.

Todd Walker:
What more can you ask of a man. He has hit in six different spots in the order, he is batting around .290 and filled in admirably for Lee at first. He goes to work day and does his job, and does it well.

I want him to be a Cub, but he will most likely be traded.

RC Cola:
He has struggled at the plate as of late, but if you are a Cubs fan, you have to be excited for the future at SS. Though he is a vastly different player, the excitement I have about RC reminds me of Mr. Dunston.

He will be a Cub at the end of the year.

A-Ram:
Though he has greatly underachieved, the return of D-Lee has benefited him the most. Even back in his days in Pittsburgh he was better with protection. Someone else mentioned this, but he is the Chicago Baseball version of Scottie Pippen.

He will be a Cub at the end of the year.

Matt Murton:
Though many are disappointed, my jury is still out. Let him play, see what he can do, get him away from this coaching staff. He showed signs of greatness during the second half last year, so let’s hope he can repeat that.

He will be a Cub at the end of the year.

Juan Pierre:
Though he would admit he has been a grave disappointment, he has started to turn it on and before the game on Wednesday had gotten his average up to .270. I see big things for JP in the second half.

I hope he will be a Cub and I think he will be a Cub at the end of the year.

Jacque Jones:
Has to be the team MVP in the first half, over .300, 15 HR’s and almost 50 RBI’s. There is not a Cubs fan out there that can say they expected this performance. He had an atrocious April, but has been the best hitter in the lineup since.

He has performed great, but he should be and will be traded.

The pitching staff:

Sean Marshall:
I am very excited about his future; Jimmy Key and Barry Zito come to mind. I hope he is a Cub for a long time to come.

He will be a Cub at the end of the year.

Carlos Zambrano:
He started slow, but has returned to the Z of old and will have a big second half.

He will be a Cub at the end of the year.

Greg Maddux:
He had the best start of his career but has been showing the signs of his age since April. He was 5-0 and now he is 7-8.

He will be traded and he should be traded.

Kerry Wood:
Words do not exist for this description.

He will be a Cub, only in the bullpen.

Mark Prior:
See Kerry Wood.

He will be a Cub.

Carlos Marmol:
Exciting and young, not nearly enough evidence to draw a conclusion.

He will be a Cub.

Angel Guzman:
One inning, 43 pitches, need I say more.

He will be a Cub.

Rich Hill:
He loves the minor leagues.

He will be traded.

Glooroo:
See Mark Prior and Kerry Wood.

In my world, he will be traded, but most likely cut.

Bullpen:

Howry – lived up to expectations, will be a Cub.
Eyre – good first half, will be a Cub.
Williamson – showed signs, will be traded.
Novoa – getting there, almost, will be a Cub.
Ohman – shaky first half, showing improvement, will be a Cub.
Dempster – just plain awful, but will be a Cub.

Reserves:

Phil Nevin – traded
Neifi Perez – depends on Dusty
John Mabry – will be a Cub
Bynum – I long for John Koronka, will be cut
Blanco – Will be a Cub

Well Faithful, those are my thoughts, what are yours, please share. Moving forward, we will need each other to get through 2006, so don’t go away, you are more important than ever.

Thanks for reading, feel free to drop me a line at brian@chicagocubsonline.com, and until next time….

Stay Classy Cubs Fans!!

Quote of the Day

"Unless you try to do something beyond what you have already mastered, you will never grow." - Ralph Waldo Emerson
Share on Fancred