Rambling as the Cubs Season Awaits

In ten days, the Cubs will begin their 2013 campaign, and while it will take place on April 1st, we all hope this upcoming edition is no joke.

It is widely documented and discussed that two of the offseason “risks” will not pan out because Stewart and Baker are hurt or shut down for now.  It is March 22, and people have decided that these signings have not worked and are horrible.  Sure, they MIGHT turn out that way, but let’s just wait until its warm enough to wear shorts before we make that decision.  Mmmmkay?

And with that, let’s celebrate the start of spring, the beginning of the NCAA tourney, and just anything else your little heart desires with some good, ole fashioned ramblings …

  • The Cubs most recent No. 1 draft pick fractured his hamate bone. Shocking. Stunning. Didn’t see that coming.
  • I see Rick Porcello is having quite an amazing spring. Then I get aggravated. Then I remember that in 2005, Nomar hit like .792 in Spring Training for the Cubs. He then hit .114 in April and tore his hamstring off his leg.
  • So, you know, that is kind of comforting … or not.
  • If Sports Illustrated keeps doing the whole athletes’ wives thing with the Swimsuit Edition, will all of you please help me start a petition for Kim DeJesus?
  • And in all seriousness, please read up on David and Kim DeJesus’ charity for ALS.  They do great work and truly care to help.
  • But seriously, SI, give Kimmy D a call.
  • At this point, just keep the ‘Fonz.
  • I ask this honestly … who won the WBC?  Was it Puerto Rico or the DR?  I know this is gaining a lot of traction in other countries, but Buddy Boy and his cronies need to hire a marketing savant to figure out what to do at home.
  • I absolutely love baseball, adore it, spend thousands on a it a year, and I saw less than two innings of the WBC … TOTAL.
  • When it is all said and done, either Samardzija or McThoyer is going to look like a genius.  Samardzija for waiting and making twice as much or McThoyer for getting him on the cheap.  Or, they both look dumb, he signs a big contract a stinks.
  • So yeah, C.
  • Also, regarding McLeod, I hope we have a great draft because it is hard to imagine him being around much longer. It appears he may be one of, if not the most, sought after GM candidate today.
  • Today is one of my favorite days of the year. I am not a big college basketball fan, but taking the day off, sitting in a room with a dozen TVs, fried food, “colored water” and watching dreams come true is just awesome. There are no two ways about it.
  • Also it means the Cubs are going to play real baseball games in a few days, I will be golfing again soon, and The Masters is right around the corner
  • It is about this time of year when I think I have had it with Chicago weather and being cold for months when I realize all the phenomenal things that are going to happen, and I immediately fall in love with this city all over again.
  • Do yourself and me a favor, and go to a Saturday game in June.  Just have an awesome day.
  • I have avoided this topic for too long. I live in Lakeview. Tom Tunney is my Alderman. I must say that I believe he truly cares and wants to help his constituents. In regards to Wrigley, he is so wrong it is not even funny. If you disagree with me, let me know, and say why.
  • Wrigley is older than any resident in Lakeview. People move here for this. Ricketts is spending his own money. Sure, I love the rooftops, and the feel and the history and it all, but if some more video boards knock out a few rooftops and bring in an extra $30 million … SO BE IT.  The rooftops already made who knows how much money on someone else’s product. Let the man do what he wants.
  • If you disagree, that is fine. But if so, I would love to have a civil discourse about it below. No argument that Tunney has made holds water with me. At least none I have read.
  • A restored and rejuvenated Wrigley will be amazing for the neighborhood of Lakeview and the city of Chicago.  I just hope it happens … ya know, right around the time the Cubs win their third Pennant and second World Series in a row!

And that, my friends, is all I have to say about that for now.  Enjoy the beginning of Spring, the fresher, warmer weather and as much basketball as you can stomach.

And until next time …

Stay Classy Cubs Fans!!

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  • triple

    About the WBC, the Dominican won. This was the first year that I gave the WBC a fair shake, and I really enjoyed it. I think the reason that it isn’t as popular in the states is due to a lack of real star power on the USA team. It also seems as though other country’s players take way more pride in it, therefore, so do their fans. It was way more fun to watch some of these games than to try and watch any of the spring training games on TV… and I know this is off subject, but how many damn Cardinals and Yankees games can the MLB network show while I haven’t been able to spot one Cubs game there?!?!

    Anyway, the WBC games had a playoff level intensity to them that was nice to witness in March instead of the relaxed atmosphere of spring training. Also, the DR and PR fans really get into these games, and are always making noise the whole time. I wish more Americans had that same passion for baseball!

    • calicub

      Well I think American fans do have the same passion for baseball, we just display it when the games actually matter, like in the world series. I think the only way for the WBC to gain more traction is if more than 16 teams participated, and also if 2 teams from the same bracket couldn’t face off in finals. I think it should have been Dom. v. Japan in the finals and PUR v. NED in a 3rd place match.

      I actually really enjoyed the WBC when I was home at my parents for about a week. (they get the MLB channel, I don’t). I started following the games after that on vipbox but as soon as the US and Italy were eliminated I lost all interest…

      What ticked me off abut the WBC being here in San Francisco, was the sheer amount of money it would cost just to see a game. 2 tickets in standing room was ~$200 and seats were even more. (although if I wanted to go all by my lonesome, single seats in the outfield were $8 a few hours before the game)

      • triple

        Yes I agree it’s a little screwy with the double elimination aspect and 2 teams from the same bracket making it to the finals, but I do think that they probably were 2 of the best teams so I was okay with that. It’s unfortunate that they can’t do more of a seeding within the brackets so the 4 best teams around the world end up in different brackets, but then that means a lot more travel, but maybe they should. Also, if there are more than 16 countries represented, I think that will only water down the competition even more

        Also, as far as the fans and passion, the thing is that to the people from Puerto Rico and the Dominican, as well as some of the other countries, those games really did matter to them. On the radio yesterday, while they were talking about the Hanley Ramirez injury (which of course is another strike against the WBC) they were saying how the Dominicans take the WBC more seriously than getting to the World Series in the majors. I think our American public just doesn’t seem to care about the WBC, but for the rest of the world, it’s the highest form of baseball they get to see, and feel like they’re a part of it.

        You’re right about ticket prices. I live in AZ and didn’t even entertain going to a game, although I really wish I would have been at the Mexico/Canada game to see the brawl, yet I’m sure the coverage was far better watching on the TV than at the game.

        • calicub

          Mexico – Canada would have been the one to see..

          I suppose to American’s the WBC is just so below the MLB in terms of excitement, competition and talent, that when you watch that for 8 months out of the year, watching the WBC for a few weeks is like watching a minor league game and just doesn’t compare.

          That being said, I have hope that baseball will one day truly become a world wide sport and it seems to be on that direction, especially with the growth of leagues in Asia (outside of Japan) and in Europe.

  • cubs1967

    Buddy Boy? How is it the bloggers can use nicknames but the posters cannot? Who made up these junior high school rules? Theo and Jed? Bill of Rights anyone? Freedom of speech?
    Btw, great post Brian and please vote out Tunney next election.

    • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

      I did. The difference is that Brian is not being hateful.

    • calicub

      As someone who has been censored elsewhere on the Internet, I think you are forgetting just how accepting Neil is of other’s expression of opinion, especially where he doesn’t need to be.

    • Shawon O’Meter

      Freedom of speech may be your worst argument ever and in my opinion that is saying something. Freedom of speech entitles you to go start your own blog, with your own rules and then you can see if anyone actually visits it. Freedom of speech doesn’t allow you to go to Neil’s blog and disrespect his rules. If you think his rules are junior high go start your own and try and put Neil out of business. The Bill of Rights ensures your right to do that. Unfortunately for you I think common sense ensures your blog would be a colossal failure. Mine would too but I’m not on here whining and making straw man arguments.

      • John_CC

        ’67 is an expert in Junior High antics and arguments, and apparently that is his level of understanding history and social studies as well.

    • http://theboardridersuite.wordpress.com/ Theboardrider

      LOL!

  • Gramps

    I have always wondered what would the neighborhood be like if the Cubs moved out? Would those homes down Addison be sold for $400,000 to $500,000? Would there be as many drinking establishments down Clark? Just sayin!

    Looking forward to my 65th season of being a Cubs fan! I like the way the team finally has a plan and am sure it will pay off in the near future! At least I hope so!!!

    • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

      Great to hear from you

  • http://theboardridersuite.wordpress.com/ Theboardrider

    So is Kim D a model? I just looked her up for the first time and was, um, blown away. She’s not the normal hot sorority gal…

  • Ray Ray

    Yes it is still March and there is a possibility Stewart and Baker will contribute…….but I would bet the other. Lets review what was out there. This team lost over 100 games last year. Gone are Dempster, Maholm and Volstad(thank god) from last years opening day. They replaced those 3 with a pitcher in Scott Baker coming off TJ signed to a 1 year contract who the were hoping would pitch by May. Again… Hoping. Scott Feldman with his 155 IP combined over the last 2 years who had a 5.09 ERA last year was another. Then Edwin Jackson was signed to a multi year overpay contract. Can anyone honestly say that they are confident any of these signings are great bets to be good moves? Jackson could pan out to be a decent 4 but that is alot of money for a #4. Feldman is just like Volstad. Hoping that a change of scenery might help. Texas didn’t want him back. I doubt any other teams would promise him a starting role. In terms of Scott Baker…it is common knowledge that it takes over a year in most cases to recover fully from TJ. Why sign this guy to a 1 year deal? He won’t bring back any prospects by July like Maholm did. Theo could have gone after a Brandon McCarthy, Joe Saunders, even Kevin Correia who had a 1.298 Whip. The Feldman and Baker signings were incredibly risky and they look to me like they will both backfire.

    • Rational Logic

      “an anyone honestly say that they are confident any of these signings are great bets to be good moves? ”

      Can you honestly be confident these moves are going to end up horribly?

      Ryan Dempster was coming off TJ surgery. Ted Lilly was a .500 pitcher. Aramis Ramirez was unproven, lazy, and overweight. Corey Patterson was a 30-30 potential player hitting .298 before he went down in 2003. Nomar. The list goes on and on. You never know who will turn into what. It’s pointless to blast the FO before a single pitch or at-bat has been made.

      • Ray Ray

        How about a little rational logic? Ted Lilly was coming off a 15 win season. Ryan Dempster was brought in as a reliever. Feldman and Baker were brought in to start. The point was the FO rolled the dice with risky options instead of safer bets. I am all for the rebuild….but put a better product on the field. As RIP says……enjoy the Kool-Aid.

        • John_CC

          First, I’d like to hear what the “safe bet” options where? Name the players please.

          Second, Baker and Feldman were brought in create pitching depth. The highest expectation for Baker was and is that he could be full strength in mid-April or May. No one expected a full season or 200 innings from him.

          • calicub

            I’ve been asking for a list of alternatives all offseason. Some how that point never gets addressed with Ray…

          • John_CC

            Funny how that works, eh? I suppose there was Grienke, that’s a safe bet, or Lohse…hmmm…I can’t think of many more, Jackson – O Yeah we got him, and maybe Anibal – O Yeah, they tried but lost out on that deal…

          • Ray Ray

            See above and re-read my post. This is not brain surgery!

          • calicub

            Sorry about that sometimes its easy to skip lines when you read. I was also referencing times in the past when we have discussed 3B.

            Anywho…

            Brandon McCarthy was linked to the Cubs all offseason before he signed with AZ above his AAV. Plus he presented similar risk with his lingering brain issues, which if you recall played a role in delaying his deal.

            I will give you Saunders. He was very servicable last year but somewhat older than the direction the club was going..

            As Correia, I can’t imagine he was a better option with more upside than the Feldman nor Baker. Don’t forget Correia spent much of his career in SF and it’s deep outfield, and in Pittsburg with the weak NL Central, vs a guy like Feldman who spent his entire career in the bandbox in Arlington in the AL west, known for its offensive prowess…

          • triple

            I’ve asked Ray this before and he has replied. To be fair, he did mention Saunders, McCarthy, and Correia in his original post. They all look like as good or better options than maybe Feldman and Baker, alhthough probably cost a little more. But I’m fine with the Edwin Jackson signing. He’s durable, and if they feel his best baseball is ahead of him, let’s hope they’re right.

          • Ray Ray

            Re-read my post. I gave not only 1 safer bet……but 3

          • John_CC

            Sorry Ray Ray, I missed the last part of your post…

            I like McCarthy, but you’re saying he isn’t injury prone? He got 2/$18M, I like Baker and his contract better.

            Saunders? I don’t see an argument that he is much better than Feldman. Come on.

            And Kevin Corriea?? Seriously? Less than 2K/BB, 1.4 career WHIP? Give me a break. Villaneuva is clearly better than Kevin Corriea, you can admit that can’t you?

          • calicub

            yeah same mistake as me… How are any of those guys “safer bets”?

          • Ray Ray

            This is for you and Cali. By safer bets I am talking about innings eaters. This team is not going anywhere I am sure all 3 of us agree. Feldman threw 150 innings combined in 2 years. Baker will be lucky to throw 100 innings this year. Correia is coming off 177 or so IP. Saunders is healthy and McCarthy’s arm is fine.