Thursday, December 30, 2004

Behind enemy lines: Redbirds sign Alomar

The rival Redbirds are about to sign 74 year old second sacker Robbie Alomar. According to the St. Louis Post Dispatch Alomar and the Genius Tony LaRussa have been in contact. Alomar was a great player back in the day. But his career has been declining the past three years. The Genius loves reclamation projects and that is what Alomar is at this point in his career.

Wednesday, December 29, 2004

Cubs settle a sexual discrimination lawsuit with scout

Tribune Corp has settled a sexual discrimination suit with Jennie D. Patton a Montgomery, Alabama woman who was a part time scout with the Cubs from '94 -- '02. This article from the Montgomery Advertiser will detail the whole situation.

The final paragraphs are very interesting:

Preston Douglas, an experienced scout who gave a deposition in the case, said of the Cubs, "One thing I can say very strongly about the Chicago Cubs organization is that it exemplified them, and still exemplifies, as does most of professional baseball, a good 'ole' boy fraternal attitude and practices, with its rules of solidarity, discrimination, elimination and exclusion."

"As early as 1995, I heard discussions and statements within the Cubs organization that Ms. Patton would never be a full-time scout because she was a woman," Douglas said in the deposition.

I am not going to comment on the firing, I don't know Ms. Patton nor do I know anything about her job peformance.

I'd like to comment on Mr. Douglass' remarks. It does not surprise me that a the Cubs or any MLB team is run by a good ole boy mentality. I am surprised that a tight buttoned corporation like the Tribune is not more careful watching the good ole boys operate their baseball team. What have the "rules of solidarity, discrimination, elimination and exclusion" ever done for the Cubs? These rules have won the Cubs countless pennants and world series banners. After 96 years of futility maybe the Cubs should rethink their good ole boy mentality and the rules that come with that mentality.

Funny how no Chicago paper reported this story. The heads up on this article came from Cubs for Breakfast. Thanks.

Saturday, December 25, 2004

The Steve Christmas Game Boxscore

Merry Christmas Cub fans. Below is the "Christmas Game". Steve Christmas was a backup catcher with the Reds, Sox & Cubs. He only got a cup of coffee with the Cubs in '86. On April 27, 1986 it was a white Christmas in Wrigleyville!

Chicago Cubs 12, Montreal Expos 10

DayGame Played on Sunday, April 27, 1986 (D) at Wrigley Field

MON N 1 0 0 0 0 5 3 0 1 - 10 12 0
CHI N 0 0 0 4 1 2 0 5 x - 12 14 0

Montreal Expos AB R H RBI BB K PO A
Raines lf 4 2 1 1 1 0 2 0
Webster cf 5 3 3 0 0 0 0 0
Dawson rf 3 1 1 0 2 1 3 1
Brooks ss 5 2 2 4 0 1 2 1
Wallach 3b 4 0 0 1 1 0 3 1
Galarraga 1b 4 1 2 1 0 0 6 0
Law 2b 4 1 3 2 0 1 2 2
Fitzgerald c 4 0 0 0 0 0 6 0
McGaffigan p 2 0 0 0 0 2 0 1
Schatzeder p 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Thompson ph 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Reardon p 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Riley p 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Totals 37 10 12 9 4 5 24 6

DP: 1.

2B: Law 2 (4,off Trout,off Ruthven); Brooks (6,off Trout); Dawson (3,off Baller).
HR: Raines (2,1st inning off Trout 0 on, 0 out); Law (1,6th inning off Trout
1 on, 2 out); Brooks (4,7th inning off Ruthven 2 on, 2 out).

Chicago Cubs AB R H RBI BB K PO A
Dernier cf 4 0 2 0 0 0 3 0
Christmas ph 1 0 1 2 0 0 0 0
Hoffman pr 0 1 0 0 0 0 0 0
Baller p 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Bosley lf 4 0 1 1 0 0 3 0
Dunston ph,ss 1 1 1 1 0 0 0 0
Sandberg 2b 5 1 1 0 0 0 2 4
Moreland rf 3 0 0 0 2 1 0 0
Durham 1b 4 1 1 1 1 1 10 0
Cey 3b 2 1 0 0 0 0 0 2
Trillo 3b 1 0 0 0 0 0 1 0
J. Davis c 4 3 3 5 0 1 6 0
Speier ss 3 1 2 2 1 1 1 3
Lopes pr,lf 0 1 0 0 0 0 0 0
Trout p 2 1 1 0 0 1 0 1
Ruthven p 1 0 0 0 0 1 0 0
Fontenot p 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Mumphrey ph,cf 1 1 1 0 0 0 1 0
Totals 36 12 14 12 4 6 27 10

DP: 2.
PB: J. Davis (3).

2B: Sandberg (4,off McGaffigan); Trout (1,off McGaffigan); Bosley (1,off Schatzeder);
Christmas (1,off Reardon); Dunston (5,off Riley).
HR: J. Davis 2 (2,4th inning off McGaffigan 3 on, 2 out,8th inning off Reardon
0 on, 1 out); Speier (1,6th inning off Schatzeder 1 on, 1 out).
HBP: Cey (1,by McGaffigan).
IBB: Moreland 2 (2,by Schatzeder,by Riley).

Montreal Expos IP H HR R ER BB K
McGaffigan 4 4 1 5 5 2 5
Schatzeder 3 4 1 2 2 1 1
Reardon L(2-2) 0.1 4 1 4 4 0 0
Riley 0.2 2 0 1 1 1 0
Totals 8.0 14 3 12 12 4 6

Chicago Cubs IP H HR R ER BB K
Trout 5.2 7 2 6 6 3 4
Ruthven 2 3 1 3 3 1 0
Fontenot W(1-0) 0.1 0 0 0 0 0 0
Baller SV(2) 1 2 0 1 0 0 1
Totals 9 12 3 10 9 4 5

HBP: McGaffigan (1,Cey).
IBB: Schatzeder (2,Moreland); Riley (3,Moreland).

Umpires: Bob Engel, Jim Quick, Paul Runge, Dave Pallone

Time of Game: 3:01 Attendance: 30825

8th Inning Recap:
out to third; J. Davis homered; Speier singled to center; LOPES
to right [Lopes to third]; CHRISTMAS BATTED FOR DERNIER;
Christmas doubled to right [Lopes scored, Mumphrey scored];

REPLACED REARDON (PITCHING); Dunston doubled to left [Hoffman
scored]; Sandberg grounded out (third to first); Moreland was
walked intentionally; Durham singled to right [Dunston scored,
Moreland out at third (right to third)]; 5 R, 6 H, 0 E, 1 LOB.
Expos 9, Cubs 12.

Thursday, December 23, 2004

Cubs want the nets to be permanent; building commission's response: nope

My stance on the Chicago Cubs and Wrigley Field is pretty simple. The most important thing to me, as a Cub fan, is to see the Chicago Cubs win a World Series before I leave this earth. For years I have advocated that the Cubs use Wrigley Field to create additional revenues and most importantly invest these back in to the team. In recent years the Cubs have began to take advantage Wrigley Field. Advertising, bleacher expansion, rooftop deals, concerts, sponsorships, and other revenue streams have become an important part of the organization. Creating these new revenue streams is great and hopefully will bring the Cubs the championship we all dream of. The problem is the Cubs can not overlook the problems that come with playing in a 90 year old ballpark.

Tuesday's Sun-Times reported Wiss Janney Elstner filed a report, on behalf of the Cubs, suggesting that the nets be left up to catch falling concrete from the upper deck. In Wednesday's Sun-Times the City says the nets are not a long term solution. For the first time in many years, I'm gonna side with Mayor Daley and his merry band of thieves. The Cubs have got to give the City and the fans a better answer than "the ballpark's old we'll keep the nets up to protect you". They have to provide a solution to this problem.

If the lower deck at Wrigley Fd. is not safe, the Cubs have got to solve this problem before any bleacher expansion or Jimmy Buffet concert. Wrigley Field is showing it's age. Leaving up nets for the 2005 season and beyond does not solve any problems. It just delays the inevitable. Boys and girls this ballpark is crumbling literally.

The Tribsters have three choices:
  1. Let Wrigley Field fall apart and demand that the State/City/or suburb build them a new park. (the White Sox and Brewers used this plan)
  2. Fix the problem--if possible.
  3. Rebuild the grandstand and upper deck at Clark and Addison.

When this all began last year Kaderbek said that netting would be a short term solution. He did not want to see nets in place for Opening Day 2005. Maybe it was unrealistic for the Cubs to get the needed survey and estimate on the work that had to be done. I would not have come back to the city with a proposal that said everything is fine and dandy. Falling concrete and ice from buildings kill people every year downtown. This situation has got to be taken seriously by City Hall.

Before the Tribsters move ahead with any of the plans to add revenue, they should tell us what they are going to do about the falling concrete. Nets that are more appealing to the eye are not a solution.

Monday, December 20, 2004

Classic 1060west: A Christmas Carol


Below is a Holiday episode of 1060west. This was written following the 2000 season when the Cubs were pursuing Mike Hampton and Mark Grace was heading to the desert to sign with the D-backs.

Christmas Carol Episode
of 1060 West

Cast of Characters:

Ebenezer Scrooge - Andy McFail
Marley’s Ghost – Harry Carray
Bob Crachit - Ed Lynch
Tiny Tim - Chip Carray
Ghost(s) of Christmas Past - 1908 Cubs
Ghost(s)of Christmas Present - Cindy Sandberg
Ghost of Christmas Future - Hee Seop Choi
Scrooge's Nephew - Mark Grace

X-mas Eve night. MacFail sits in his office at 1060 West Addison looking at the waiver wires. A loud Booom in background. MacFail leans over and sips his Starbucks. A loud boom again. MacFail gets up and walks over to the window. There stands a drunk Mark Grace and Brian McRae throwing snowballs at MacFail's window. MacFail opens the windows.

MACFAIL: Would you boys stop it. I'm trying to work.

GRACIE: (can barely stand) C'mon Andy come down to Toons with us for some holiday cheer.

MACFAIL: I don't have time for Holiday Cheer. I must rebuild this mess we call a baseball team.

GRACIE & B-MAC: (together) C'mon Andy! It's Christmas.

MACFAIL: (yelling) I don't have time.

Suddenly a snowball hits MacFail in the face and onto the scene runs a drunk Jamie Navarro.

NAVARRO: Merry X-Mas everyone. Hey Gracie where are we going?

GRACIE: We're going to Toons man, but Andy won't come.

MACFAIL: I have to get back to work. (slamming the window shut.)

MacFail takes a big swig of Starbucks and walks back to his chair.

MACFAIL: (too himself) Christmas, who the hell has time for Christmas...I'm trying to build a baseball team! (MacFail drifts off into sleep...)

McFail sleeping in his chair dead to the world. In the background, the loud boom starts again. This time, the sound grows louder and louder as if it's coming from the other side of the office door


McFail: What the...


McFail: Gracie, that's it. I'm trading you to San Francisco for Bill Mueller!!!

Voice on other side of the door: Yooou Caan't trade him, he's a free agent.

McFail:(to himself) He is? (to the door) Who's there?

Voice: Aaaannndy, we used to go to my restaurant and do the word jumble. Then I'd spell it backwards

McFail: Harry? (Door swings open)

Harry: Aaandy, you can't limit Budweiser sales to two per person. Yooou know that I'm a Cub fan and a Bud man.

McFail: Harry, I didn't think I'd ever be visited by your ghost. (to himself) Actually I figured it would be Brick haunting me for that stupid tribute to him on the foul poles.

Harry: Andy, I'mm here to tell you that because you've continued the mediocrity of the Cubs, you'll be visited by three spirits. Oh yeah, let me tell you, spirits. I remember when I used to go to Jilly's for sweeet, sweet, cocktails. And Stony would go for the sweet, sweet busboys. Oh boy, there was...

McFail: Harry!?

Harry: Sorry Andy, like I said before you'll be visited by three spirits tonight, the first at midnight. Andy, did you really bring in Ricky Guterrez?

McFail: Yes Harry

Harry: I could never say that name. Remember Aaandy, midnight. Three spirits. Oh spirits. I'm off to haunt Jilly's, bye Andy. (door closes)

Midnight. The clock begins to sound off. McFail is dozing in his chair and a dim light can be seen from underneath the door. The light grows brighter and noises outside the door grow louder. McFail suddenly wakes up.

McFail: Who’s out there? (to himself) I must have been dreaming. That was the strangest though, Harry talking about going to Jilly’s and doing the Jumble. Who would have thought.

(Noise growing louder and the light now starting to fill the entire room)

McFail: I bet its Grace and Navarro again with a spotlight. (yelling) Laugh it up guys, especially you Gracie, when I don’t offer you salary arbitration. And Navarro, I’ll have you black balled from the league during winter meetings. You won’t even be able to get a job cleaning jockstraps.

(The noise stops and the light disappears. McFail rises from his chair and goes to the door. He opens it a crack and sees an object traveling fast toward his head. He pushes the door shut and ducks as a baseball goes through. Laughter can be heard in the distance)

McFail: Gracie! Navarro! That’s it!!


McFail: Who are you? Ben Christensen? I told you we’d clear that matter up.


McFail: (whining) Who are you? Please tell me. I’m sorry.

Voices: We’re the 1908 World Series Champions

(The room begins to fog and McFail is transported to October 14, 1908 in Detroit. The Cub players have swarmed the mound and are congratulating each other.)

Voices: Look at the scoreboard. What does it say?

McFail: Cubs 2 Tigers 0

Voices: When was the last time the Cubs played an American League team with that result?

McFail: Well, last year. We beat the Royals 2-1 in July.

Voices: (confused) Who are the Royals?

McFail: The Kansas City Royals.

Voices: There’s a baseball team in Kansas City? And you play them in July?

McFail: Oh yeah, we play between the leagues during the regular season. There’s even baseball in Florida and Minnesota

Voices (even more confused): Minnesota???

McFail: Oh yes. I won a World Series there. You know I’m a third generation baseball czar.

Voices: (to themselves) Let’s get the hell out of here. This guy’s hopeless. (to McFail) Is there anywhere we can drop you? We’re going back.

McFail: Take me back to the office. I need to see if I can trade Joe Girardi for Mark Wohlers.

MacFail is back in his office looking at thewaiver wire. Suddenly there’s a light tap on the door.Macfail ignores. Again a light tap on the door.

MACFAIL: (scared) Jim is that you? Again there is a tap on the door.

MACFAIL: (upset) C’mon Hendry get in here.

The door swings open and suddenly there’s a young ladystanding in the doorway that looks like CindySandberg, corn-cob dress and all.

MACFAIL: Wait a minute I’ve heard about you. Keep in mind I’m a happily married man.

CINDY SANDBERG: I’m not here for that. I could go to any bar in Wrigleyville and find a better prospect than you.

MACFAIL: I’ll have you know…

CINDY: Silence Andy! I’m not here for that. I’m gonna show you what everyone’s doing this X-mas Eve.

MACFAIL: What are you talking about. I don’t have time. Mickey Morandini might clear waivers any minute now.

CINDY: (Lifting her skirt to show some leg) C’mon Andy follow me.


They walked through the door and they are on a golfcourse in Arizona.

MACFAIL: Where are we?

Suddenly to the right is Ed Lynch & Ken Kravec playing golf and laughing.

LYNCH: Ahhh Kenny it’s days like today when I miss Chicago!

KRAVEC: Yeah and the 18 inches of snow.

MACFAIL: It’s Eddie and Kenny why the hell aren’t they scouting players?

CINDY: What do you think they do with most of the time out here.

MACFAIL: (pissed) Kenny, I’d expect this from you but Ed…

CINDY: (Interrupting) It’s pointless they can’t hear you.

LYNCH: (to Kravec) Whatta ya’ think Andy’s up to now?

KRAVEC: I’m sure he’s looking for a utility infielder…

LYNCH: I wonder who’s making his coffee?

MACFAIL: Alright! Ed…

CINDY: (interrupting again) Time to move on.

Cindy leads Macfail into a bathroom on the course…

MACFAIL: Cindy I told you I’m a married man.

Suddenly they find themselves at Toons inWrigleyville. It is a smokey & crowded bar night and we see the three ex-Cubs at the bar drinking cocktails. McRae & Navarro have big Cigars and Gracie’s smoking a cigarette.

NAVARRO: Hey, Gracie I bet you’re glad to be outta here.

GRACIE: Well Jamie I’ll miss the fans but the management of this team… Well you guys know it will never… (glancing around at a table of young ladies)Man check out the talent over at that table.

MC RAE: Damn Gracie, that’s some good stuff. You still got the eye.

MACFAIL: (Yelling) What Grace? Management will neverwhat? (Pissed) I didn’t see you picking this team…

CINDY: Andy they can’t hear you.

MACFAIL: Why are they complaining about me?

CINDY: I don’t know. Do you wanna go?

MACFAIL: (excited) I told you. I’m married.

CINDY: (frustrated) Alright. A puff of smoke permeates throughout the bar. When the smoke clears MacFail is all alone in his office.

McFail sits in his office sleeping fitfully on his desk when the door bursts open. The clock is ringing 2AM. Two hooded figures walk into the office...

McFail: Whose there? (The figures walk forward. One turns to the other and mumbles something unintelligible.)

McFail: Are you the ghost of Cubs future? I thought there was only one of you?

(Suddenly the ghosts pull back their hood the reveal Hee Seop Choi and his interpreter)

McFail: Hee Seop, what are you doing here?

Hee Seop: (speaks Korean the interpreter)

Interpreter: I am here to show you the Cubs in the future if you don't change the error of your ways. Let us go.

(The room suddenly gets foggy and the trio is transported to a broadcast booth in an unfamiliar stadium. The broadcaster speaks..)

Broadcaster: Welcome to Opening Day 2015 at Beautiful Harry Caray Tribune Park on the lovely Chicago River. I'm Chip Caray, and this is my partner in the booth Mark Grace.

Gracie: Chip, how's it going today? It's a beautiful day for baseball.

Chip: It certainly is Gracie. Let's look at the starting pitching today as the Cubs face the four-time defending World Champion Colorado Rockies. The Cubs will be facing their long time nemisis Rueben "the Tornado" Quevedo against Kevin Tapani. You gotta love the way Taps held up after 17 major reconstructive arm surgeries...

McFail: Rueben Quevedo? How did he get traded to Colorado?

Hee Seop: (Speaks in Korean)

Interpreter: You traded him. For a power hitting third baseman.

McFail: So what happened?

Hee Seop: (Speaks in Korean)

Interpreter: He became the second ex-Cub to win four Cy Young awards. And the first to win four World Series.

McFail: But the Cubs had to have gotten better, right? I mean we're finally in a new stadium.

Hee Seop: (Speaks in Korean)

Interpreter: Just listen and you'll see.

Chip: Well, the Cubs gave it all they had, but they have fallen short in the home opener to the defending champs 11-2. What's your take on the game Gracie?

Grace: They suck. I'm going to Porcaro's Steak house for a beer. Coming?

McFail: How could this happen to my beloved team? How?

Interpreter: Because of your arrogance the team overpaid on bad free agents forcing the Tribune to abandon Wrigley and build a new stadium. The new stadium didn't bring in the expected crowds and you were fired a year later.

McFail: Well what happened to me?

(The room fogs up again and we find ourselves at a minor league game in Butscratch, Mississippi)

McFail: Nooooo!!!! It can't be.

(An old McFail walks with a cup opf coffee to a man whose back is to him)

Old McFail: Coffee sir?

(Man turns around. Its Ed Lynch)

Ed: Good job Andy, you sure make a good cup of joe.

(McFail slumps down crying)

McFail: It can’t be true, it can’t be true…

McFail is mumbling to himself back in his office at his desk…

McFail: It can’t be true. It can’t be true. (wakes up) My god, what the hell happened? That was the strangest night I’ve had since I got rid of Terry Mullholland and Jose Hernandez for Micah Bowie and Ruben …

(rushes to the window and flings it open. Scanning below, he sees someone approaching wearing a Cubs uniform)

McFail: (to the figure) Hey, you down there what day is it?

Figure Below: Christmas, woo. Day, woo. Christmas, woo. Day, woo. (continues on)

McFail: Ronnie Woo! (to himself) I’m not too late, I can change the future. (to Ronnie) Ronnie, go to the Jewel and grab the biggest case of Old Style you can find.

Ronnie: Old Style, woo. Never pay, woo. Wax cups, woo.

McFail: Yes, wax cups Ronnie. Get that case, and some Vienna Beef hotdogs. We need to get these to Mike Hampton to show him we’re really interested in signing him.

Ronnie: Too late, woo. Signed, woo. Colorado, woo.

McFail: Well, it’s back to the waiver wire. I can’t let this team build a new stadium.


Merry Christmas Cub fans! Here's hoping 2005 is the "Next Year" we have been waiting our lifetimes for.

Sunday, December 19, 2004

Trouble in River City...

With a capital T.

The Redbirds signing of Mark Mulder gives the NL Champs the one thing they lacked in ace. Don't be confused by the stats. Mulder is an ace. This was a great trade by Walt Jocketty.

How will Jim Hendry respond? Will he? If he doesn't it will be another long season. As a fan I am not sure what Cubs management is thinking at this time. The Cubs have not addressed any of their needs this offseason. The Cubs need to retool their pen and find a legitimate leadoff hitter. The Cubs can sign Carlos Beltran, if they don't find a leadoff hitter and fix the 'pen they'll be in trouble in 2005.

Saturday, December 18, 2004

Cubs and City Closing in on Bleacher Expansion Deal

The never ending saga between the Cubs and the City appears to be coming to an end.

Today's Sun Times reports: the City of Chicago and the Cubs are closing in on a deal that will give the Cubs 1,800 additional seats in the bleachers. The Cubs have agreed to lower the number of additional seats and to eliminate the controversial "El-like" columns by moving the exterior outfield walls 8' onto the sidewalks.

The bleacher expansion is just a part of the Cubs plan to modernize Wrigley Field. The construction of the Wrigley Campus above will bring the Cubs additional revenue and allow fans to enjoy many amenities newer ballparks have.

Friday, December 17, 2004

East Lake View Neighbors Group threatens Cubs

No professional sports franchise has the relationship the Cubs have with their surrounding community.

The Cubs proposal to have a concert at Wrigley Fd. this labor day has already drawn criticism from Charlotte Newfeld. In today's Sun-Times the East Lake View Neighbors (a 300 member group) has announced that they will fight the Cubs with legal action.

Now wouldn't the reasonable thing be to wait and see the Cubs proposal before you threaten legal action? It would be, if you had rational neighbors. These vocal minority groups are a real issue in Wrigleyville. They paint with a broad brush and act like they are speaking on behalf of the neighborhood. The reality is these groups just want to extort something from the Tribsters.

Random Stuff

If you want any Sammy rumors visit The Cubdom's SammyStock 2004. My favorite rumor is the Royal deal.

The Cubs new Midwest League Affiliate the Peoria Chiefs has unveiled a new logo and a new website.

The Randy Johnson 3-way deal with the Yanks, Dodgers & D-Backs is pretty complicated. Shawn Green wants a contract extension and Brad Penny's health could be an issue. The deal will probably happen, but it could take a week to get all of the loose ends tied up.

I am very impressed with what the Braves have done this winter. Last week they acquired Kolb, this week A's ace Tim Hudson. It will be interesting to see how Billy Beane and Ken Macha use our old friend Juan Cruz.

Here's a FoxSports review of the Rule 5 Draft.

The BoSox are offering Matty Clement between $24 & $25 million for 3 years. According to Boston Herald Clement will select between the Jays, Angels & Red Sox. Good Luck Matty.

Nomar will be in Rockford on January 19th as part of the 2005 Cubs Caravan.

Happy Festuvus Everyone!

Wednesday, December 15, 2004

Happy With Nomar

Well after today's developments, I'm happy the Cubs chose to sign Nomah. It seems fiscally irresponsible to spend $40 Million on a guy who hit less than .280 and drove in only 72 RBI. Not to mention the fact that he only stole 17 bases.

He only did this 10 times in 2004.

The Red Sox should have signed Cabrera, after the job he did for them. He'd be less expensive and he brings better defense to the table. It seems the Cardinals want Cabrera.

More Useless Walker Jabbering

does todd walker ever shut up ? it bad enough that he can't quit running over steve stone. is there a clause in his new contract that forbade him from simply being quiet and working on ground balls? is he obligated to be the next mark grace? at least gracie could field. now he's got to start making it harder to reassimilate sammy:

"I think what will happen is that if he does come back, we'll hold a meeting the first day and air everything out," Walker said. "Baseball players have short memories. Once he apologizes and we get that out in the open and everything is clear, then we move on from there and it's not a big deal anymore."

Walker is not demanding an apology, but he thinks Sosa will deliver one.

"To me personally does it matter? No." Walker said. "But the reason I said that will happen is because I think Sammy will do it. He'll step forward and do it. Do I need to hear it? No.

"Half the team probably does and half the team probably doesn't. Ultimately if Sammy steps forward I think it's going to be on his own will and it will be what he thinks should be done. I know Sammy and I know he wants to win worse than anybody. And any distractions ... he's going to take care of them."
now, if you're sammy, do you hear any of that ad hoc couching? or do you simply hear a journeyman teammate (and that's all you are, odell hale) trying to move you down a couple pegs?

whatever any of us hope or fear, sammy is a difficult commodity to move at this point and is likely to be wearing cubbie blue on april 1. regardless of whoever broke the boombox, all these guys will be sharing a clubhouse. is sammy a prima donna? yes. is that going to change? no. so what is walker doing? does he really think it's his place to back sammy sosa into a corner?

Tuesday, December 14, 2004

Random Cubs Boxscore 8/31/80

The game below may have been the only 3 hit game of Tim Blackwell's career! The Cubs also saw the great Larry Biitner go 3 for 5.

In 1980 the Wrigley Fd. favorite was Bill Buckner. On this day Billy Buck went 1 for 5. Buckner was on his way to winning the 1980 NL batting title with a .324 AVG. Today is Buckner's 55th birthday. Happy Birthday #22.

Chicago Cubs 8, Houston Astros 7

Played on Sunday, August 31, 1980 (D) at Wrigley Field

HOU N 2 0 1 0 0 2 0 1 1 - 7 13 2
CHI N 1 0 0 2 0 0 0 2 3 - 8 15 1

Houston Astros AB R H RBI BB K PO A
Morgan 2b 5 0 0 0 0 0 4 1
Cabell 3b 5 1 1 1 0 2 1 1
Puhl rf 5 1 3 1 0 0 1 0
Cruz lf 4 1 1 2 1 0 0 1
Cedeno cf 5 0 2 0 0 1 3 0
Walling 1b 4 2 2 0 0 0 4 0
Bergman 1b 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 0
Ashby c 2 0 0 0 0 0 4 1
Pujols c 1 1 0 0 1 0 6 0
Landestoy ss 4 0 1 1 0 0 1 1
LaCorte p 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Niekro p 3 0 2 2 0 1 1 3
Sambito p 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Reynolds ss 1 1 1 0 0 0 0 0
Totals 39 7 13 7 2 4 26 8

E: Cabell (21), Cruz (11).
PB: Ashby (9).

HR: Cruz (8,1st inning off Reuschel 1 on, 2 out); Cabell (2,3rd inning off
Reuschel 0 on, 0 out).
IBB: Cruz (12,by Tidrow).

SB: Walling (4,2nd base off Reuschel/Blackwell).

Chicago Cubs AB R H RBI BB K PO A
DeJesus ss 5 1 2 0 0 0 1 3
Randle 3b 5 0 1 0 0 2 0 4
Buckner lf 5 2 1 0 0 1 1 1
Johnson 1b 3 1 1 1 2 0 13 0
Thompson pr 0 1 0 0 0 0 0 0
Biittner rf 5 1 3 2 0 0 3 0
Martin cf 5 0 0 0 0 2 3 0
Blackwell c 5 1 3 1 0 2 5 0
Tyson 2b 3 1 2 1 0 1 1 5
Kingman ph 1 0 1 2 0 0 0 0
Kelleher pr,2b 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Reuschel p 2 0 1 1 0 1 0 1
Vail ph 1 0 0 0 0 1 0 0
Tidrow p 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Totals 40 8 15 8 2 10 27 14

DP: 1.
E: DeJesus (20).

2B: Tyson (18,off Niekro); Reuschel (3,off Niekro); Kingman (8,off Sambito).
SH: Reuschel (10,off Niekro).

Niekro 7 8 0 4 3 2 7
Sambito 0.2 2 0 1 1 0 1
LaCorte L(8-4) 1 5 0 3 3 0 2
Totals 8 15 0 8 6 2 10

Chicago Cubs IP H HR R ER BB K
Reuschel 8 11 2 6 4 1 3
Tidrow W(6-5) 1 2 0 1 1 1 1
Totals 9 13 2 7 5 2 4

WP: Sambito (2).
IBB: Tidrow (12,Cruz).

Umpires: John McSherry, Joe West, Lanny Harris, Paul Pryor

Time of Game: 3:00 Attendance: 14,823

Buckner won the 1980 NL batting title hitting .324

Monday, December 13, 2004

Happy Birthday Fergie!

Today is Fergie Jenkins 62nd Birthday. Happy Birthday #31. Below is a Boxscore from 1969. A classic Jenkins vs. Carlton game from back in the day. Enjoy...

Chicago Cubs 1, St. Louis Cardinals 0
Played on Wednesday, April 16, 1969 (N) at Busch Stadium II

CHI N 0 0 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 - 1 10 0
STL N 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 - 0 5 0

Chicago Cubs AB R H RBI BB K PO A
Kessinger ss 3 0 2 0 2 0 1 3
Beckert 2b 4 0 2 0 0 0 4 3
Qualls 2b 1 0 0 0 0 1 0 0
Williams lf 5 1 1 0 0 0 1 0
Santo 3b 3 0 0 0 1 1 1 3
Banks 1b 3 0 0 0 0 0 11 2
Hundley c 4 0 3 1 0 0 6 0
Hickman rf 4 0 1 0 0 0 1 0
Young cf 3 0 1 0 1 2 1 0
Jenkins p 4 0 0 0 0 3 1 2
Totals 34 1 10 1 4 7 27 13

SH: Banks (1,off Carlton).

St. Louis Cardinals AB R H RBI BB K PO A
Brock lf 4 0 0 0 0 1 0 0
Flood cf 4 0 0 0 0 0 1 0
Pinson rf 4 0 0 0 0 1 2 0
Torre 1b 4 0 0 0 0 0 12 2
McCarver c 4 0 0 0 0 1 7 0
Shannon 3b 3 0 2 0 0 1 0 3
Gagliano 3b 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1
Javier 2b 2 0 1 0 0 0 2 3
Hague ph 1 0 0 0 0 1 0 0
Huntz 2b 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 0
Maxvill ss 2 0 0 0 1 1 2 1
Carlton p 2 0 2 0 0 0 0 1
White ph 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Torrez p 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Totals 31 0 5 0 1 6 27 11

DP: 3.

2B: Carlton (1,off Jenkins).

Chicago Cubs IP H HR R ER BB K
Jenkins W(1-1) 9 5 0 0 0 1 6

St. Louis Cardinals IP H HR R ER BB K
Carlton L(1-1) 8 9 0 1 1 4 6
Torrez 1 1 0 0 0 0 1
Totals 9 10 0 1 1 4 7

Umpires: Tony Venzon, Frank Secory, Paul Pryor, Satch Davidson

Time of Game: 2:14 Attendance: 16,418

Sunday, December 12, 2004

The World According to Dusty: WINTER MEETINGS

Johnnie B. Baker held court in Anaheim this weekend:

I don't know dude.

Everytime the Cub manager opens his mouth we are one day closer to the Bob Brenly Era at Clark and Addison. Here's what the Cub manager had to say on three topics that concerned the scribes in Southern California:


On this past season:
"We needed Sammy. We still need Sammy," Johnnie B. said Saturday at the Winter Meetings. "I don't want to see him leave town under the circumstances the way they are now after everything that he's done for the Cubs and everything he's done for baseball in the late '90s. He deserves to be held in higher esteem than what happened last year."

"Right now, Sammy's on the Cubs," Baker said. "And until he's not on the Cubs, we have to figure out a way to have him be productive and hopefully happy and help us win."

On Sahm's bruised ego:
"Whatever feelings he has inside, it's up to us to get rid of that," Baker said. "I know last year it wasn't easy on him. It was the first time he was booed. I know that affected him. I could see it on his face. I talked to him about it a couple times."

On Sahm's relationship with Cub fans:
"You can repair that by hitting, hitting a lot of home runs and throwing out people," Baker said. "The only way you repair people is through action. Sammy's not old to the point where he can't continue to have great years. The last couple years he's been hurt and if you lose time, especially in the middle of the season, that's a long time. You're playing catchup the whole time."

On being Sahm's enemik:
"I don't expect an apology," Baker said.

Who's to blame?:
"First, you have to talk it out," the manager said. "It wasn't just me, it was a lot of things there. It was the fans, the media, some of his teammates -- there were a lot of things there. Sammy's one of the major parts who we have to get back together. If Sammy's going to be on our team, we need him to win."

This is rich! Baker and Hendry have made their own bed. Adam Katz the ball is in your court. Hendry and Baker miscalculated this one big time. Assasinating Sammy's character following his early exit has made Sammy public enemik number one in Cubland. Remember when Baker said he'd been "covering for him(Sosa) all year". What about the fact that they released the surveillance video showing Sahm leaving early. The Cubs hired Baker to handle superstar players. It looks to me like he's doing a great job.

The Closer

On Joe
"Who says it can't be Joe [Borowski] again? He's healthy," Baker said. "I don't know if he'll throw 93, 94 [mph] but hey, I've seen quality relievers throw less than that.

On Closers
"You need a closer. Where would the Dodgers be without [Eric] Gagne? Where would the Yankees be without Mariano Rivera?"

I'll say it. Dusty, it can't be Joe Borowski. Joe got by on smoke and mirrors in 2003. He pitched his butt off for that team. As a result of overuse in 2002 and 2003 his arm is now shot. Unless the surgeon can put 10 more MPH on his fastball, it will be tough for Joe to succeed in any role.

Bonds/BALCO and the tarnished MLB record books

On Bonds admitting to "accidental" steroid use:
"You just have to take Barry at his word," Baker said. "If that's what he said, and he said it in front of a grand jury, that's the only thing you can go by."

On people passing judgement on Bonds:
"I don't even know if that's what the testimony was," Baker said. "You have to wait until they get to court to see what was true or untrue. . . . It's going to make for good TV if it airs."

On the record books:
"Records won't be tainted until somebody has accurate proof that they should be tainted," he said. "It's hard to taint something until it really starts stinking. Once it starts stinking, then you know it's tainted. Right now, it's not stinking enough."

You have gotta love the fact that Baker takes a stance on serious issues. While managing the Giants Dusty saw Bonds hat size grow dramatically. He also saw a Benito Santiago play like Johnny Bench for a season. He was never suspicious? must have just been great managing. The proof Dusty is in the hat size.

Saturday, December 11, 2004

The Closer Issue

The past several weeks we have been bombarded with rumors that had Brew Crew closer Dan Kolb heading to the Cubs for players like The Farns and Todd Wellemeyer. There's one problem with trading garbage. Usually you get garbage in return. Even the Brewers are not gonna trade a player, with 39 saves in 2004, for Cub pitchers that have not lived up to expectations. On Saturday, the Brewers dealt Kolb to the Braves for their number one pitching prospect. The Braves will now move John Smoltz back into the starting rotation.

This off season Jim Hendry is 0 for 3 in acquiring a closer. Percival, Benitez and now Kolb all have new addresses. The scariest thing that I have read all day is that the Cubs may try and fill this role from within the organization. I hope Hendry is just saying what he is supposed to. If they are serious about letting Hawkins, Borowski, Dempster or uhhh The Farns (why not offer the job to Michael Wuertz?) close 2005 will not be a succesful year.

Hendry has put together the best starting staff in the NL. Why is it so hard for the Cubs to find a decent bullpen? Why is it so hard for most MLB teams to find a decent bullpen? It's never easy is it?

Wednesday, December 08, 2004

The Louisiana Lumberjack

One thing that I found amazing yesterday was this quote from Todd Walker:
"I'm a big fan of [general manager] Jim Hendry and a big fan of [manager] Dusty Baker, and ultimately we just have a group of good guys. Chip Caray and Steve Stone might not say that, but the rest of us feel we have a great bunch of guys that just want to win and have the talent and mentality to do it."

Amazing! These guys just can't leave that Stone situation alone. If the Cubs win the pennant in '05 this will all be forgotten. If they struggle in '05, there will be more problems with this group players.

Many fans like "clubhouse lawyers" like Walker. He's quick with a one-liner, goes on all the talk shows, and loves to be quoted by the scribes after a game. I'll take a "boring" personality like Ryne Sandberg or Andre Dawson any day of the week.

The Signing of Nomar, Walker, and Maddux's new caddy Henry Blanco leaves the Cubs with many of the same question marks they had in '04.

  1. Who is gonna leadoff? It looks to me like the current options are the new LF, Patterson or Walker. I hope they find a fast LF option.
  2. Next the bullpen. Who's gonna close and do you trust any of the setup guys?
  3. There's still a player in RF who had his boombox smashed on the final day of the year. Can they trade him? If he returns will he produce?
  4. Team Leadership, this team didn't have any (see Walker's comments)
  5. I am very concerned with the middle inf. defense.

Hopefully, Jim Hendry can find this team a player or two who will put the focus back on the field. It's sounds to me like Walker could use some help with his focus.

Tuesday, December 07, 2004

NOMAR'S BACK & the Cubs make some other moves...

ESPN Radio's Bruce Levine is reporting that Nomar will be back in the fold next year. The Cubs and Garciaparra's agent have agreed on a base salary of $8 million. With incentives Nomar can earn up to $11 million in 2005. According to the radio report there are no options for 2006. So Nomar will be back on the market a year from now.

In other player news the Cubs offered Matty Clement arbitration. This will guarantee that the Cubs will get a number one draft pick when Clement signs a deal with another team. The Cubs also offered arbitration to Todd Hollandsworth. Hollandsworth may accept this with his injury problems.

There is still no word on Todd Walker, but everyone predicts he'll be back in '05.

I am happy to see the Cubs bring Nomar back. If he's healthy all year the Cubs will have one of the best SS in the NL. I am concerned with the Cubs middle infield defense if they sign Walker. Neither Nomar nor Walker is going to be confused with a gold glove winner. I was raised on strong defense up the middle. I have real concerns with watching Garciaparra and Walker botch double plays all of 2005. But hey, who's askin' me.

In other news did you guys see where the Cubs hired their 70th trainer in the last three seasons. I hope this guy does a better job. If Wood, Prior, and Zambrano stay healthy he'll be back next year.

Monday, December 06, 2004

Say it ain't so, Barry.

I just don't believe it's true. Sure Barry has grown a little. But, you know, pumpin' iron is all he needs. Take your vitamins, eat healthy, lift some weights. Voila!

Barry Bonds and his all-natural scowl

Wednesday, December 01, 2004

2005 HOF Candidates

2005 HOF candidates
The 2005 ballot features 27 candidates, with 15 returnees and 12 newcomers. (Years on ballot)
Jim Abbott (1)
Bert Blyleven (8)
Wade Boggs (1)
Tom Candiotti (1)
Dave Concepcion (12)
Chili Davis (1)
Andre Dawson (4)
Steve Garvey (13)
Rich Gossage (6)
Tommy John (11)
Mark Langston (1)
Don Mattingly (5)
Jack McDowell (1)
Willie McGee (1)
Jeff Montgomery (1)
Jack Morris (6)
Dale Murphy (7)
Otis Nixon (1)
Dave Parker (9)
Tony Phillips (1)
Jim Rice (11)
Ryne Sandberg (3)
Lee Smith (3)
Terry Steinbach (1)
Darryl Strawberry (1)
Bruce Sutter (12)
Alan Trammell (4)

As a Cub fan, I look at the list above and I think Ryno and Sutter should be locks. I will not claim to be impartial.

You know you are old when you can remember the careers of all the players on the HOF ballot. The other players that I'd like to see make it include Jim Rice, Jack Morris, Bert Blylevan, and Wade Boggs (although I wouldn't vote for Boggs on the first ballot).

How did Terry Steinbach get on the list?