I've just shaken my crystal balls, and have come up with my 10 best mid-season Nostra-Dummass foreasts:
1) Patterson will be part of a deal to someone like Kansas City, Seattle, or some other obscure AL city. By going to the other league, the Cubs can make sure he's buried, and if he becomes successful, being in the other league will lessen the embarassment. However, I think Korey has left such a bitter taste in the mouths of the fans that even if he hits .350 somewhere else, Cub fans won't care!
PS: Please spare me with any comparisons to Lou Brock. Patterson couldn't carry Lou Brock's
2) I believe that our beloved bumblers will give it one last shot....over the next two homestands, and if they're still more than 10 games out by July 31, then it's bye-bye Holly, Walker, and maybe BernieBurnitz. Take a look at Iowa. There is no one there to bring up, which is one of the reasons that Greenburg and Merton are here from West Tenn. Time to restock the minors so they can make some trades over the winter.
In addition, the Cubs demise this early in the summer spells the end of the Nomar Factor in Chicago. Why bring him back this season? If he does well, the fans will clamor for the Cub to sign him next year, and I don't think they want to resign him. In fact, I think Nomar knows this, and that's why they scheduled Mia Hamm Day before the season started. I think this was an olive branch to Nomar, as part of his Sayanara Chicago tour.
3) Dusty "The Snoozer" Baker will be your Cub Manager at least through this season and into next season. ..with provisions (see below).
4) Cub "management", and I use that term loosely, will insist that Dusty fire Gene Clines, Gary "Hey, I got the best do-nothing job in baseball" Matthews, Sonny Jackson and Larry Rothschild at season's end, in an effort to compromise with Baker's keeping his job. Dusty will refuse, and quit, but not after the Cubs give him the full $16 MILLION he's due. Don't be surprised if Rothschild is gone soon. Rumor has it that he's one of the biggest cancer's in the clubhouse, and one of the reason's why the youngsters on the pitching staff aren't responding.
5) Bob Brenly will NOT become the next Cub Manager. Don't be surprised if they pick a real
up n' comer, like Prospect HS-product Mike Quade, the current Iowa Manager, and a disciple of Tony Larussa. With the next few years expected to be a rebuilding period, old schoolers like Brenly don't fit. Besides, Double-B has the best gig in baseball as the TV analyst, and he can walk into places like Bernie's and be revered!
6) Ron Santo will not change his current toupee until the Cub losing streak is over....despite the objections of Pat Hughes, who will continue to go with the pink sweater until the W flag flies again.
7) This Satutrday's and Sunday games in FLA will get hurricaned out. With more hurricanes predicted in FLA over the next 30 days, we will see make-up games with the Marlins in the Confines when the FISH swim back to Chitown at the end of August.
8) Mark Prior and Kerry Wood will both go back on the DL within the next 30 days. RE: Prior's lack of movement on the fastball yesterday. The guy pitched BP in Atlanta.
9) Greg Maddux will retire at the end of the season, and rejoin the Braves organization as roving pitching coach. He will then be the successor to Leo Mazzili who's rumored to be rocking himself into retirement soon over health concerns.
10) Nostra-Dummass remains a big supporter of Jim Hendry. I'm one who believes that he was very much hamstrung over the winter, not just by Sammy's contract BS, but by the greedy Tribune management, who insist on putting 3 million coulees in the park without spending an extra dime. However, if the Cubs get Mike MacDougal from Kansas City, and use him as a closer, Hendry should be taken to task. MacDougal has had nothing but arm trouble his entire career, and he is no better a closer than, say, Wellemeyer would be given the role, and he'll get murdelized in our ball park.
More predictions later....