The CCO asked and the Faithful responded with 818 votes. In the closest poll conducted in the nearly six years of ChicagoCubsOnline, 212 thought Mike Quade's team will win between 86-90 games this season ... and 210 see the Cubs finishing at or near the .500 mark.

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The results of this year's minor league fan poll are now in. Forty-five players were nominated and a total of 126 votes were cast. In the end, right-handed pitchers Trey McNutt and Hayden Simpson, along with outfielder Matt Szczur tied with nine votes apiece.

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Given the day off by my employer, I decided to get ahead of myself and start on a few feature articles for the report. I found myself hitting a brick wall in trying to find the motivation to write articles on the minor league managers and coaches. Looking for inspiration, or perhaps just stalling for time, I switched on my DVR. Scrolling through the programs, I found that I recorded a broadcast of the movie Eight Men Out. I hadn't seen the movie since it was released on VHS (now I'm showing my age), so it was pretty fresh to me.

For those not familiar with the movie, it's based on the 1963 Eliot Asinof novel of the same name. It concerns the 1919 Chicago White Sox, and their conspiracy to "throw" the World Series. Eight members of the Chicago White Sox agreed with gamblers to allow the Cincinnati Reds to win the World Series. The player's motivation was believed unfair treatment by White Sox owner, Charles Comiskey. The frugal ...

We do not need another older player to play second base or anywhere else .
Please, please, please Jim Hendry do not bring the New York Mets retread to Chicago.
The Cubs system is full of second basemen we do not need anymore veterans to mudding up the works. Let the kids play

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The Vine Line's New Look

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VineLine25-pub.jpgThe Vine Line, the monthly magazine of the Chicago Cubs, is celebrating its 25th Anniversary with a new look and new size. The Cubs monthly mag is quite a bit smaller, 9"x10 7/8" than the 10"x12" that has been the norm for many years. The Vine Line also features a new logo ... and a new publisher, EMI Network.

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Chris Jaffe of the Hardball Times sent the CCO an article on the 15 worst endings ever to regular-season games.

Merkle's Boner is #2 and Jaffe pointed out the infamous game happened 90 years prior to the day of the Brant Brown game.

Click here for the entire article from Hardball Times

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The CCO's Community Blog is Back!

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After almost a four-month hiatus, the CCO's Community Blog is back ... and ready for posts. Due to the changes on the main page, the community blog had to be taken down.

The commenting system on the community blog is the same as on the front-page, Disquis, so you can post comments the same way. But in order to create your own blog post, you must sign into MT and create an account ... if you do not have one from before Disquis was added to the main page..

Please click here to create your account on the CCO to post your thoughts on the Cubs. All previous accounts have been restored with the same passwords and user names.

The end of yet another dismal season on the north side has brought about a number of questions for this franchise. Since 2003, Cub fans have seen management continue to patch and paste while chasing an elusive championship. With new ownership, the time may be right to move in another direction.
Sound familiar?

In 1981, the Cubs ended 60 years of ownership by the Wrigley family when they were purchased by the Tribune Company. Among the company's holdings included the Chicago Tribune newspaper, WGN television (the Cubs television outlet), and WGN radio (their radio outlet). The Tribune Company wasted no time in hiring Philadelphia Phillies Manager and former front office executive Dallas Green as their new General Manager. Together, they announced that they were "Building a New Tradition" for the Cubs.

But before looking at how Green changed the culture of the Cubs, let's take a brief look back at some of their former General Managers.

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Defense

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As bad as the Cubs defense looked last year why would they want more defensive woes with Dunn in our line up? If I recall correctly we have a player that was suppose to be able to hit 40 home runs a year when we signed Soriano. I don't think we need another bad defensive outfielder just because hit "may or may not" hit home runs. I'll give you the fact that Soriano did improve his defense last year but he still made some pretty lame attempts at catching a few fly balls hit to left. If we do acquire Adam Dunn I believe he should be made a first baseman. There are plenty of examples of outfielders making the transition from outfield to first, Pulhos comes to mind. By the end of the year the Cubs defense did show improvement. Young Castro didn't make as many errors as he did when first arriving and the defense was in fact better under Mike Quadi than under Pinalla. Weather Lou just didn't care anymore or was truly puzzled by the effort being shown by the players and was unable to co ...

Author's Note: This is the second in a series of articles dealing with player development. The first: Seconds from Stardom - The Tragic Tale of Richard Lewis, addressed the timing in which to promote young players. This article focuses on a team strategy for development. The last will look at long range planning. I hope you will find them interesting and informative.

The scene plays over and over again in a diehard Cubs fan's mind, like some recurring nightmare. It was October 14, in game 6 of the National League Championship. The Cubs were leading the series 3 games to 2. It was one out in the 8th inning, with starter Mark Prior pitching a 3 hit shutout. Luis Castillo hits a pop fly that is drifting foul toward left field. As outfielder Moises Alou streaked over to make the play, the crowd, including a bespectacled fan in a green sweatshirt and Cubs cap, rose to its feet. As Alou reached over into the stands ...
Hit the pause button! For those of you who believe in c ...

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