Rambling Upon a Series Victory

Good morning and happy Friday. I hope each and every one of you out there among the Cubs Faithful is having a wonderful start to the day. Or middle of the day. Or in two days, basically whenever you read this.

I have spent my fair share of time, as well as many others’ fair share of time, inside Wrigley Field, and there were only one or two times the weather made the experience more miserable than it did on Tuesday and Wednesday night. It was horrible. Call it committed or just plain stupid, either way, it was COLD.

So, with that out of the way, let’s start throwing out some random and obvious thoughts and see what sticks against the wall. So, here we go …

  • Hey, I can’t see to well … was that just series victory? Really, the Cubs won a series?
  • So, that is what it feels like to be happy about a team’s performance. ALERT: I am speaking of happy based on a series victory, not on the season. It is nice to have a small respite every now and again.
  • Carlos Zambrano has looked pretty darn good for a large chunk of this season.
  • He has also been slightly above average as a pitcher.
  • Man, Luis Montanez looked like the kid we thought we drafted. He sure played well on Tuesday and got the second-inning rally started.
  • Oh wait, I was still in college when he was drafted. And I am now in my 30′s. Yep, sounds pretty typical for the Cubs.
  • Now the Cubs have lost two weather-shortened games in their own stadium in 11 days.
  • I know there a lot who don’t like/hate Quade, and he has a ton to prove, but I thought he did a smart thing by going off on the Umps. The weather had not gotten much worse, and I have watched them play with lightning off in the distance.
  • This is a direct correlation to Buddy Boy wanting his team to play in National League Central. The unbalanced scheduled puts the six teams at a disadvantage when it comes to the weather. If the Mets were making another visit to Chicago, Wednesday night’s game would have been handled much differently.
  • I have said it for years. The division make up is so stupid. Move the Astros to the AL West and let’s be done with it.
  • No, I am not whining. Okay, maybe a little.
  • Courtesy of a best pal, “The Cubs should buy a plane to go between Des Moines and Chicago the rest of the year the way we are forced to use this bullpen.”
  • There are a lot of negative words that can be used to describe poor performances on a playing field. So many words, in fact.
  • And yet, I cannot think of one that properly describes Justin Berg’s outing on Wednesday night.
  • I have seen a lot of things in my life, but … THAT … WAS … HORRID.
  • Aramis is on pace to hit 3.2 homeruns this season.
  • Just let that sink in for a while.
  • So, horribly and terribly pathetic. Way to play out your contract year, bud.
  • On a happier note, and just let me be positive here, it was great to have an above-average third baseman for all these years. We all know how long it took to find one after Santo, so I enjoyed that.
  • I really hope it doesn’t take almost 30 years this go around.
  • As I am typing this, my MLB Trade Rumors App just popped up to inform me of the Rodrigo Lopez acquisition. I wait to read all of your thoughts on this move below.
  • I have a feeling I know what the general consensus will be.
  • My thoughts go out to Marlon Byrd. That is a career-altering injury to a player that is highly regarded by many in the game. Here’s hoping he gets better as soon as possible.
  • When the weather delays a minor-league rehab stint, things just aren’t going your way. #TypicalCubs.
  • Reed Johnson’s heart and hustle are simply awesome. I have to think it is good for some young guys to watch him play. I sure hope so because it is fun to watch.

That is all for now. Here’s hoping the momentum keeps going as the Cubs take on two juggernauts in the next two series.

Houston and Pittsburgh scary …

Until next time …

Stay Classy Cubs Fans!!

Quote of the Day

"Sometimes you have to stop worrying, wondering, and doubting and just have faith that things will work out." - Steve Jobs
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  • Cheryl

    Brian, thanks. It’s always good to hear the positive once in a while.

  • Joey U

    The aquistion of Lopez is just another example of the lack of pitching dept we have at the upper levels of our minor league system.. Good teams are able to over come injuries. This team is just plan awful. I am embarrased to say I am a Cub Fan!!

  • diehardcubfan

    Brian, another great ramble.  Has everyone noticed how Montanez has sat the bench again after going 2 for 4 and now that Campana went 2 for 4 he will probably sit today.  We do not need speed anyway. 

    Besides we have ARAM knocking in all those runs.  Did I say that?  Blake DeWitt and Jeff Baker are better outfielders anyway than Campana or Montanez. 

    Let us hope that today at least one will play.

  • Agustinrexach

    Brian, we Still Have a legit shot at the Division Crown mathematically speaking….Lol

    Wining streak… What kind of a frase is that And What does it mean?

    The worst thing is that we will still have the Ramirez and Soriano tandem on the left side next year too! This team really needs to eat some Contracts.

    2014, here we go!!!!

  • Ripsnorter1

    I sure hope we play our best ball against Houston and Pittsburgh, because if we don’t, you’ll be talking about the last place Cubs. Pittsburgh and the Cubs are currently tied for “next to last” honors. Pittsburgh has a lousy offense, but incredibly, have a narrower run differential than the Cubs because–equally incredibly–THEIR PITCHING IS MUCH BETTER. Look for yourself:

    ………………………………………………….Pittsburgh   vs.  The Cubs
    Runs allowed…………………………………..193……….vs……237
    Runs scored……………………………………175……….vs……214
    Differential……………………………………….-18……….vs…….-23
    AND that’s with our recent offensive outbursts against the crummy Mets (24 runs in 3 games. That isn’t going to continue forever). 

    Look at………………………………………. Houston vs. the Cubs.
    Runs allowed…………………………………..248………vs……237
    Runs scored……………………………………198………vs……214
    Differential………………………………………-50……….vs……-23

    Pittsburgh starters vs. Cubs starters for the series:
    Correa …..6-4….3.84 ERA….1.23 WHIP…..262 BAA
    Davis…….0-2…..8.31 ERA….3.00 WHIP…..316 BAA
    Prediction: Davis loses

    Maholm…1-7…..3.65 ERA….1.30 WHIP……241 BAA
    Wells……1-0…..1.80 ERA…coming off a seven week injury. 
    Maholm has been very unlucky. Lost 2-0 in his last start. Went 7 IP, too.
    IF Wells pitches like he did in AAA, we lose.

    Karstens…3-3….3.57 ERA….1.28 WHIP……267 BAA
    Dempster..3-4….6.29 ERA….1.52 WHIP……292 BAA

    You can see that Pittsburgh has three good starters going against us. 
    Davis is horrid. WE’ll probably lose that game.Wells?? I don’t know what we’ll get. I don’t think he’s fully ready myself.Dempster? Or will it be Dumpster that starts on Sunday? I dunno.

    It is possible for us to get swept in this series. The BIG difference–between winning a series and getting swept out of this series–will be entirely based upon the lineup cards that Quade puts down. If he starts the young guys: Campana, Montenez, Castillo, etc, we could sweep them. If not, and he’s playing the high dollar vets, they could easily sweep us.

  • jw

    Enjoyed the rant…nicely done

  • Ripsnorter1

    Houston Series PROJECTED STARTERS (via ESPN):

    Happ…3-6…4.99 ERA….1.42 WHIP….256 BAA
    Coleman (do you really want to know? Okay, but you asked for it).
    Coleman: 2-4…7.32 ERA…2.05 WHIP….320 BAA

    Spot start for..
    .A. Rodriguez….0-2…4.98 ERA…1.37 WHIP…263 BAA
    Z………………..5-2….4.59 ERA…1.31 WHIP….261 BAA

    Brett Meyers….1-4…5.00 ERA…1.54 WHIP….300 BAA
    Davis……………so bad I don’t want to print it.

    Happ is better than the average Coleman. Z should win vs. Rodriguez. Myers pitched very well in his first start. I saw the game, and the bullpen blew a 3 run lead in the 9th for him. 

    Houston’s bullpen leads MLB in blown saves. 11 Blown saves and 7 saves for a 39% success rate. Incredibly Atlanta also has 11 blown saves, but they also have 15 saves. 

    The Cubs? 10 saves and 6 blown saves. 63% success rate.
    Our pen rates #19 in MLB vs. Houston’s #30 in save percentage.

    Bullpen ERA:Cubs #9 at 3.17 ERA
    Houston #25 at 4.41 ERA

    Bullpen BAACubs #16 at .242
    Houston #28 at .279

    IF we can get into their pen, it will really help.

  • Cloycub13

    So I woke up yesterday, Got to work, logged in to the CCO and no ramble…I was concerned, really I was.
    Then later that afternoon The Cubs got a good pitching performance, their bats functioned, and they actually won a series… at that point I was really concerned…was I dreaming…naaaaahhhhhhhh!

    Hendry traded for a re-tread because we have no pitching depth and lo and behold this AM there was a ramble… And we as Cub fans are fearing the Pirates coming to town….Whew…normalcy!

    Big Z has looked good…the best on the team…that does not say much, but it is a fact. Now if the conglomeration of Dempster, Davis, Lopez, Russell, Coleman ETAL can actually look like real pitchers we might have something… Hurry back Garza, Wells WE NEED YOU!!!!!

    Oh wait, to have something we need the “Heart of the order” to actually have RBI’s and HR’s.

    Come on Cubs, please find a way to put the offense, the pitching and the defense all together for a decent stretch. At least make it a little more bearable. I think Jose Reyes is still running around the bases and the Cubs are still lolly-gagging… despite a win that was embarassing.  

    “Ball 12″

    Yay for me… a “Major League” and “Bull Durham” reference in two lines.  

    And the youth movement…. Read it alot on here….the only people that are really exciting to watch right now are Castro, Barney and Campana….anyone still anti-youth?

    MLBTR has a weekly chat… Each week a new question about Hendry making it through the season comes up… at first it was that it was a “Make or break year”, then it moved to “He needs to do something to survive”… and recently it was asked if a Pujols/Fielder signing saves him…the response… (Paraphrasing) ‘I think that it will be someone else making that signing and besides, signing the top name free agent out there is not a job saving type of move’…The tenor regarding Hendry is changing around MLB… keep it coming! He needs to be bounced, and yes, his yes men needs to go with him… Gaining momentum!!

    Other than that, Go Cubs!!!

  • Ripsnorter1

    Not surprising to any of you, but . . . 
    FUNKO!
    Among the 35 RF in MLB who have at least 100 PA, Funko is dead last in RBI’s with 4. Magglio Ordonez has 5. It’s a real battle down there between these two.Funko has a .441 On Base Percentage. EXCELLENT!

    • Keith Moreland

      The lack of his RBIs says more about the guys in front of him than Funko. Granted he has little power, but 38 hits including 4 2B and a HR would normally produce more than 4 RBIs, with any kind of offense in front of him.

      I’m not saying he’s a good offensive player because he isn’t, but he isn’t useless either.  He does work a count and get on base.  He plays a solid OF.  He just doesn’t hit with enough authority to be a corner outfielder.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Richard-Hood/100000706523521 Richard Hood

    Good Rant as as always Brian.

  • paulcatanese

    Lopez,Davis. and Dempster, now we have three pitchers with a total of
    over 100 years in age,that has to bring the age average of the Cubs way
    up. We need to start playing some high school players to even it out.
    It seems the team is getting older by the day.

    • http://www.facebook.com/people/Richard-Hood/100000706523521 Richard Hood

      Name one guy you have seen so far that is young that is worthy of being a long man in the big leagues? I don’t like the trade or hate the trade but I do understand the need. This is Hendry admitting that he thought more of Russell than he should have.

      • paulcatanese

        Oh I do too,was just commenting on the age factor. And it is a fact that
        we do not have any youth that can get the job done, just ranting as Brian
        asked.

  • roguesqr09

    I’ve noticed a few comments lately about the makeup of the national and american leagues and the fact that we have 6 teams in our division. Does it hurt us, sure. However, everyone does realize that we can’t simply move the astros, or any team, to the american league…right?

    If every division had 5 teams, then there would be an uneven number of teams in each league. Meaning one team would have to sit and not play for 3 days, while they’re waiting on another team to be available to play. 

  • paulcatanese

    Just an additional comment on a post of mine that I saw Ricketts talking
    to a fan on his way out of the ballpark. I dont know what was said but if I
    were to have the same opportunity I think I would ask one question. Why?
    Why did you buy the Cubs? I really dont think he could answer that with a
    straight response.

    Whatever the reason, he has not approched the purchase with every thing
    he could do to improve the team. He has not questioned any move his
    General Manager has made since he made the purchase,nor has he made his presence felt as an owner, other that a few lame speeches on how the Cubs
    want to go all the way.

    I feel for this man,if he dosent get involved more he well may go the way of the
    Dodgers and Mets. Lost revenue will not overlook him because he may be a
    nice guy or talk to fans . Fans are not stupid and he must be aware of the difference
    between attendence and paid attendence, it’s steadily costing him more every day.