Friday, April 29, 2005

Commemorating 22 years! The Lee Elia Tirade...

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Thursday, April 28, 2005

FIRE DUSTY? (an incoherent rambling)

The answer might not always be in the next man in line.

Trust me, I feel your pain.

It's the bottom of the ninth. Two outs. Runners at the corners. Down three. With your season hanging in the balance, it all comes down to...Jose Macias? A situation that calls for a power hitter can not be executed because 'The Dust' wasted using Jason Du Bois in the sixth in a meaningless pinch-hitting situation.
You've seen it before, you've heard it before, and now you're fainting through it. The Chicago Cubs and their mismanagement: a season long heart attack, headache, and heartache!
Let's take Tuesday night's game for instance. Bases loaded, two outs, and the Dust brings in Jon Leicester to close out the inning? A man who's having head and arm troubles? Do you want to ruin a young man's career by putting him out there in a situation where a walk means a run, and probably his professional well-being?
What about consistently putting LaTroy Hawkins into situations that he can not excel in? Has the once great set-up man now lost all of his marbles due to mismanagement? Will he even work effectively as a set-up man again?
Or the slip-sliding movement of Corey Patterson in the batting this a way to handle a twenty-something phenom year after year after year?
And let's not get started on the handling of the starting pitchers, that can be for another day.
What about the mish-mosh of 'giving someone a day off'. I get the fealing Dust would MAKE Lou Gehrig sit if it were 1931!
Still hard truths on Dusty:

Through all of these well-mentioned remarks, the truth remains about Dusty Baker year after year: he's a winner. Yep. In that Tony La Russa-like 'I can't believe this :#%*@ wins all the time' he seems to always have more wins than losses.
Here are some facts on Dusty that we should remember from his managing past:

1. Dusty was NEVER supplied with great pitchers, and STILL won:
1993 starters from 103 win team: 1. Bill Swift, 2. John Burkett, then a rotating circus for the 3, 4, and 5 slots with these winners: Bryan Hickerson, Jeff Brantley, Scott Sanderson, Trevor Wilson, Buddy Black, Salomon Torres, and Greg Brummert. It should be noted that EACH of these guys had at least eight starts.
Example 2, 1997: 1. Shawn Estes, 2. Kirk Reuter, 3. Mark Gardner, 4. William Van Landingham?, and a rotating fifth hole.
It was only in 2000 and 2002 that Dusty began to get supplied with some pitching when the Giants worked Russ Ortiz into the rotation, and then in '02 with Jason Schmidt's uprising.
2. It's very tough to get on a man who has NEVER been in a situation where he didn't have a true closer. Rod Beck from '93-'97, and Rob Nen from '98-'02 were his closers. Dusty never had to really manage a 9th as much til now.
3. Many comment about Dusty's collapses or inablility to handle a pitching staff, but it should be noted that Dusty's winning % past Sept. 1st, exceeds his normal winning percentage: 58%-54%.

Some of these facts still may not convince you that Dusty Baker should be sticking around Chicago for the remainder of the 2005 campaign. But you must consider the Cubs' results in previous mid-year hires. Here are the past hires since the Cubs decided to do away with Frankie Frisch in 1951:

Frankie Frisch35-45 Phil Cavaretta 27-47 1951
Charlie Grimm 6-11 Lou Boudreau 54-83 1960
Bob Kennedy 24-32 Lou Klein 48-58 1965
Leo Durocher 46-44 Whitey Lockman 39-26 1972
Whitey Lockman41-52 Jim Marshall 25-44 1974
Preston Gomez 38-52 Joey Amalfitano25-46 1980
Lee Elia 54-69 Charlie Fox 17-22 1983
Jim Frey 23-33 Gene Michael 46-55 1986
Gene Michael 68-68 Frank Luchessi 8-17 1987
Don Zimmer 18-19 Jim Essian 59-63 1991
Don Baylor 34-49 Bruce 'Lil' Kimm33-45 2002

As you can see the results have not been so flattering. Maybe Cub fans could use this history lesson in looking over their options for the remainder of the season?
A last point that needs to be made in sticking up for Baker is this: The historical trend of managers and success.
Let's take a peak at the results of some oddities in managerial history:
Example 1: Connie Mack. Mack won FIVE world championships with the Philadelphia Athletics, but left baseball with a losing record. That happens. Why? Connie wasn't supported with great players. Just as Dusty isn't surrounded by that great of a team now.
#2: Sparky Anderson. You think it's tough for Spark here, you just catch wind of how he was treated in Cincy after the '75 and '76 titles. After losing out to LA twice for the NL West title, he was shown the road. Smart move for Cincy. All Sparky did was bring success to Detroit. (It should be noted that Sparky lost 103 games with the Tigers in '89. Does that make him a bad manager?)
#3: Tony La Russa. After guiding the Sox to the '83 division championship, La Russa was cut following a sub-par start to the '86 season. Was La Russa the failure of this club? I think most of us know that Floyd Bannister and Richard Dotson as aces didn't help either.
#4: Earl Weaver. My example is this. One of the greatest managers of all time can't lead Baltimore past Milwaukee in the '82 race. The next year, with virtually the same team, future Cub coach Joe Altobelli leads them to the championship. Was the team worse off with Earl Weaver??
#5: Terry Francona. Francona just managed a World Series champion. Did he make the right moves? Did he OUTMANAGE Tony La Russa? Or did the Red Sox just do everything right in eight straight games? I choose the latter.
These things make you wonder.

Let me just recap,
After looking at the results of Baker's past: He makes something out of nothing.
After looking at the Cubs history of mid-year hires: Our luck is not contagious, just hereditary.
After looking at how teams have reacted with or without managers: It makes you think...

The Chicago Cubs do not lose because of Dusty Baker. They lose because as an organization they have not surrounded Dusty Baker with men that can win. On top of that, it should be noted that the managerial position may be one of the more over-rated positions in all of baseball. The manager is still the motivator, the leader, the quick fixer-upper guy. Yet, he is not the one who can't bunt with 1st and 2nd and nobody out. He is not throwing a belt high fastball to Jason Bay. He is not getting caught in run-downs. He is not missing the pitch on the hit and run. The players are. And unfortunately, the players, with all do respect, are mediocre.

Jim Hendry has surrounded Dusty Baker with a mediocre team, hence, mediocre results. It should also be noted that when a player can't get a bunt down it isn't just the bunter's fault, or Dusty's fault, or Sonny Jackson's fault. It's an ORGANIZATIONAL fault. From top to bottom each mistake is a microcosm of the Cubs' futility as an organization.

No replacement can help. It will come down to the players, and the organization as to where this team ends up.

Wednesday, April 27, 2005

Big Comeback Win

Burnitz and the rest of the Cubs mob Corey after he hit the Game winning HR!

After last night's debacle you need a game like today. Earlier in the week I called Barrett and Patterson gutless. The Cubs showed today that despite the injuries and all of the bad karma this year that they have guts. A gutless team would have rolled over and died today after the grand slam to 185 pounder (soaking wet) Felipe Lopez. The northsiders may lack talent, but I won't say they lack guts again.

Corey Patterson and DLee were the offensive heroes on Wednesday afternoon at Wrigley. Patterson hit a "walk-off"(not to be confused with the Corey Patterson Walkathon) homer to beat the Reds and allow the Cubs to take 2 of 3 from the Reds.

The Northsiders trailed bigtime early. Ryan Dempster is doing a tremendous Matty Clement imitation thus far in 2005. One game he'll be great and get no run support. The next game he walks everybody, has no control and turns the game over to the bullpen in the 5th.

DLee was the man on Wednesday. Lee homered twice and drove in six runs while going 4-4 (that extended his hitting streak to 10 games). Entering 2005 Lee was a lifetime .230 hitter in April. After his great day today Lee is hitting .430, yes .430. Lee and Neifi have been the only consistant offensive players thus far in 2005.

Record & off to Houston
The Cubs record continues to bounce around the .500 mark. They are now 11-10 and heading to Houston. The game this coming Friday will matchup two 300 game winners Greg Maddux(0-1, 4.50) and Roger Clemens(1-0, o.32). Gametine 7:05 ct.

Felipe Lopez, OBP, and the Fool

A lifetime .236 hitter put the Cubs down early Wednesday afternoon. Felipe Lopez smacked a grandslam off of Cub starter Ryam Dempster in the Reds 5 run third inning.

While the Cubs have been difficult to figure out all year, the last few days are very simple. Cub pitchers have been walking the park. Through six innings Wednesday Cubs pitchers have walked six. On Tuesday night the Cub pitching staff walked 8. Meanwhile the Cubs have taken one walk each day (through six innings on Weds).

The Fool
Zambrano's stunt -- hitting Kearns following the Dunn homerun was just another example of the fool that Carlos is. Don't get me wrong, the guy is a great competitor and he's fun to watch, but he is starting to get a reputation with Umpires. Dusty and Rothschild have allowed this behavior. On Tuesday night Carlos really hurt the team getting tossed.

Monday, April 25, 2005

Neifi and the Cubs Win!

DLee congratulates Neifi after he hit a 3 run HR in the bottom of the eighth in the Cubs 10-6 win over the Reds on Monday.

The Cub offense showed up Monday night. Neifi Perez continued to swing a hot bat. Perez singled in the lead run in the 5th to give the Cubs a 3-2 lead. In the eighth Neifi hit his second bomb in two days, a homerun to right center field. Neifi had 4 RBi in the Cub victory. Derek Lee continued to swing a hot bat. Lee was 2 for 4 with 2 runs, 2 RBi and a double. Lee is hitting .408 this season.

On his MARK

Prior had 10 strikeouts.

Mark Prior won his third game in three starts. Prior pitched well. In 6.0 IP he gave up 6 hits, 2 walks, 2 earned runs, and 1 HR. Prior's ERA soared to 0.95 for the season. Prior threw 106 pitches, 68 were strikes.

In the ninth inning the Cubs faced a scary situation as Chad Fox was struggling. Fox delivered his 29th pitch of the inning. He turned around. Neifi Perez and Barrett rushed to the mound. Fox just began walking to the dugout. He removed himself from the game. If it's serious, the Cub bullpen will really be in bad shape. The good news is Joe Borowski threw today. He's expected to go on a minor league rehab assignement in the coming weeks.

Zambrano versus Milton at the Confines at 7:05 Tuesday night. The game will be on Comcast Sports Net (DirecTV #640).

BREAKING NEWS: Len and Bren question Dusty's in-game strategy

CHICAGO, IL - In the bottom of fourth inning of Monday's Cubs/Reds game Len Kasper and Bob Brenly questioned the tactics of Cub manager Dusty Baker. You will recall that Dusty and his immature players ran Steve Stone and Chip Caray out of town because they felt the Cub announcers were not big enough homers.

Jerry Hairston led the inning off with a double. Neifi Perez came to the plate and turned to sacrifice bunt. Kasper questioned having the hot hitting Perez sacrifice bunt with the tying run at second. Brenly added that Neifi could easily hit a ball to the right side moving Hairston to second. When Perez failed to get the bunt down (he popped it up), Brenly came to his senses and covered Dusty's ass. He blamed Neifi for not getting the bunt done.

There was no word yet from Cub Management on how they will penalize Kasper and Brenly. Since both are new to the booth it is expected that the penalties will be minimal. Brenly may have saved the day by blaming Perez. We will let you know as soon as we hear something official.

Everyday there is another report of a Cub injury...

Today it's Kerry Wood. The tendinitis is back in his shoulder. I am not sure what has happened to Wood. I'd guess it has been all of the innings he has logged with awful mechanics.

The Cubs are screwed by the contract they signed Kerry to following the 2003 season. While pitchers like Mark Mulder, Tim Hudson, Kevin Millwood, and (soon) Bary Zito have become available the Cubs have been out of the running thanks to the contract they gave Kerry.

The Cubs say he may make his start on Saturday. If he does great. If not, they'll probably shut Wood down and the Cubs will be looking at moving Rusch into the rotation or calling up Sergio Mitre. Ay Caramba.

Sunday, April 24, 2005

Live From the Full Shilling Your Sunday Blog Cast

Posted by Hello

Sunday, April 24th 2005 @ 1:20PM CST
Radio: WGN 720AM
Internet: 1060west

1:12 I just finished my FREE hot dog at the Full Schilling. Looking at the lineup, Dusty has Hairston in cf, Perez at 2b, and Ronny Cedeno is playing ss hitting eighth. It's still cold out. No snow and the sun is shining. First pitch in a few minutes.

1:20 Wood winds and fires to Lawton. The ball gets by Barrett and goes to the backstop, we are underway.

1:23 Lawton walks. Wood's off to a bad start again.

1:24 Strikeout, throw 'em out DP. Barrett throws out Lawton trying to steal. One away.

1:27 Wood strikesout Bay. Nice comeback for Kerry. Here comes the Cub offense.

1:28 Dave Williams pitching for the Bucs. Hairston leading off grounds to Ward.

1:30 Neifi doubles down the line.

1:31 DLee grounds to second. Neifi to third. Here comes Ramirez...

1:33 Aramis is out 1-3.

Pirates 0 - Cubs 0

1:35 Daryle Ward walks. Wood now has two strikeouts and two leadoff walks. Get some control.

1:37 Bobby Hill - the newest member of the Cub killer category - bouncer back to Wood, he drops it, recovers and throws Ward out at second.

1:38 Craig Wilson flies to Hairston playing cf.

1:40 Cota doubles down the lf line. Hill to third. Second and third two out.

1:41 Sanchez hits one off the wall, two runs score. He's on second. Kerry is struggling as usual this season.

1:42 Wood strikes out the pitcher. The damage has been done. Bucs 2 - Northsiders 0. Wood has already thrown 32 pitches.

1:45 DuBois grounds to Sanchez.

1:47 Burnitz with a full count strikesout.

1:48 Barrett grounds to Freddy Sanchez.

Pirates 2 - Cubs 0

1:50 another leadoff walk. This guy is really flirting with trouble.

1:51 Mack pops up to Lee.

1:52 Bay whiffs

1:54 Len and Bren are not very good on a hangover. Wood is all over the place. The guy's struggling with his control. Wood comesback and fans Ward. Nice comeback for Kerry.

1:59 Ronny Cedeno in his first Major League AB. Cedeno flies to RF.

2:01 Kerry Wood at the dish. He walks.

2:02 Hairston pops to the second baseman. For some reason Wood was running and he's doubled up.

Pirates 2 - Cubs 0

2:05 Wood has already thrown 50 pitches. Bobby Hill grounds to Ramirez.

2:07 Wood fans Wilson. Cota lines to Neifi. Quick half inning. Just what Woody needed.

2:09 Joe Montana threw out the first pitch today. Time hasn't been kind.

2:10 Neifi Perez goes 370 feet to LF. Cubs finally on the board. I think I was poisoned last night. Too much post game fun.

2:10 D. Lee singles to the RCF gap.

2:12 Aramis up single to center field. 3 straight hits for the Cubs I think we were all a year younger when that last happened.

2:13 Len just plugged their blog on

2:15 Jason Dubois (play this kid every day Dusty) Anderw Jackson is dying today too. Damn Bar Louie. Struck out swinging.

2:16 Burnitz (why) 0-11 going into today just got off the schnide with a 3 run homer to RF (385 feet). Cubs 4 Bucs 2

2:17 Barrett out to Bay i CF

2:18 Cedeno popped up to Sanchez

After 4
Cubs 4 Pirates 2

Top of the 5th

2:20 Sanchez (yesterdays hero for the Bucs) strikes out

2:22 Williams strikes out swinging

2:25 Lawton gets a double to LF Dubois missed the diving catch, but we all know that Hollandsworth would have never got there.

2:26 Mackowiak out from Perez to D. Lee

Mid 5th (restroom break for me)

2:30 KW out

2:31 Hairston out to RF

2:32 Neifi (double and atater just two away from the cycle) out on strikes.

2:32 Young Will has just made his first booty call. Yes folks, its still daytime.

Top of the 6th

Pitching change - Rusch is in the game

2:34 Bay out Cedeno to D. Lee

2:35 Ward with a Texas leager sinlge.

2:36 Bobby Hill singles toward 3rd. Ramirez can't handle the ball. Runners on 1st and 2nd.

2:40 Wilson strikes out (2 outs, 1 to go)

2:41 Cota out to Burnitz.

Middle of the 6th Cubs 4 Pirates 2

Bottom of the 6th

2:41 Travis isn't drinking, he's just been accused of having a yeast infection.

2:42 The "Believe" bracelet has been just plugged. How many does LaTroy wear right now?

2:45 Just missed the last two batters, they were out. Cubs lead, no one cares. And the third batter.

Top of the 7th.

2:45 Hey! Cook just came back from the game. All faith has been lost, but the Cubs should win he reports.

2:46 CornCobb Dress just decided to take a trip around the park. Will he streak? Stay tuned

2:46 Sanchez hits a double on RF.

2:47 Williams still going. Just wend out Cedeno to D. Lee. Runner to 3rd

2:51 Lawton flies out to LF short. Sanchez was held on 3rd no run yet for the Bucs.

2:54 Mackowiack out to Burnitz who inexplicably guns the ball in. What the hell are you doing? That was the third out.

Mid 7th

Ernie sings the stretch.

Bottom of the 7th:

2:55 Sanchez catches Burnitz's towering popup. Nice play Rusty.

2:56 Barrett grounded out to ss

3:00 Cedeno grounded out.

Bottom of 8
Cubs 4 Bucs 2

3:05 Michael Wuertz steps in a set up role for the cubs, is it another bullpen disaster or are we going to get an inning of solid releif? Stay tuned, Bay goes down swinging, Wuertz got him to chase a fastball low and away. 1 out

Wuertz is plugging away throwing in the mid eighties and the low ninties. I can feel Hawkins in the pen...Wuertz unable to find the location and walks D. Ward, 1 out man on first...THe tieing run at the plate.

3;10 new developement in the Cubs bull pen, Wuertz got B Hill to ground into a DP, and the Cubs are out of the 8th.

3;11 The Cubs are moving the 9th as Natialie points "isn't this a fast game?" Why yes it has been a relatively quick game, and hopefully it will be a W...

3;12 C-PAt leads off the inning with a Willie MAys Hayes bunt laid down the 3rd base line. Hairston shows bunt, and it looks like the Cubs have figured out that small ball can actually work, it's not just for little leauge.. New concept...get guys on base that have speed and maybe they can actually score some runs... Hairston lays one down back to Vogelsong Valder-dee Valder daaa VAlder dee dee da da da..1 out man on second

3:15 Knifefight Perez up to the plate, Frozen rope to center scores C-pAT FROM SESECOND 5-2 CUBS!

3;17 1 out man on first and the bohemeth they call D. Lee is up to the plate, Vogel wild pitch gets by Cota, and Knifefight takes second. D lee hits a pop=up to the lower end of the stratosphere, and fielded cleanly for out number 2.

3:19 Man on second 2 down and the Cubs favorite son Aramis Ramirez is up to advance Perez. Looks like Vogel-wuss and the pirates are going to Intentionally walk A-Ram. Someone in the crowd was giving hte international sign of the chicken, clucking his arms at Vogel pansy.

3:20 1st and 2nd, 2 outs Mulletsworth is up. Todd has had a slow start this year and lets see i fhe can light up Vogel song to gvie HAwkins all the room in the world. Hollandsmullet takes 4 balls and here comes teh burnitcalypse..

3:27 Jeromy smacked a 3 banger in the 4th, lets see if he can it a salami here in the 8th. Vogelmeat takes the count to 2-2. Full count bases juiced, cub-dom on their feet. Fly out to right and the inning is over.

3;29 Lets all bow our heads down and say a little prayer for the top of the ninth. and the possibility of closing this game out with a W.

3:30 HEre we go top of the 9th, Chad Fox on and this is actually refreshing. LEts see what the Fox can do. C Wilson takes strike three and we are 2 outs away from a victory

3:31 Cota comes to the plate and grounds out to LEe and Derek takes care of him on his own. 2 outs.

3:32 Sanchez (aka Durty) up for hopefully to end the inning and give the Cubs a W. 3-1 is the count, and Durty Sanchez talks a walk.

3:33 TIke Boom Redmond up 2 outs and 1 on. and we are final. Cubs win 5-2 and take their record to 9-9. What a great day to be alive.

Saturday, April 23, 2005

Dusty is an easy target

LaTroy Hawkins let one slip away on Saturday. It was the latest in the Cub tragedy that is the 2005 season. Watching the game, I was furious at both LaTroy and Baker. Upon further review, and several more Old Styles, I realized that someone has been getting a "Free Pass" in Cubdom.

Hawkins grabs a new baseball and blows on his hand after giving up a game tying HR to Bay in the top of the ninth

The easy move in the Cubs Blog Army is to blame Dusty. Hell, I did it today. Why did Dusty bring LaTroy in, in the ninth? The reality is Jim Hendry has dealt Dusty a poor hand. At this point in the season, Cub fans want a scapegoat(myself included). The easy target is Baker. The man you should really want is Hendry.

Jim Hendry ain't done a damn thing for the Cubs since he acquired Nomar.

What does Baker have? 3 decent starters. No middle releivers. A closer who is scared out of his mind(the same as last September). Two middle infielders who wouldn't start for the Brewers. A starting leftfielder who's a good pinch hitter. A right fielder that only the Pirates wanted. Boys and girls this Cub team has minimal talent. As much as I would like to blame Dusty, why has Jim Hendry taken a pass? Hendry has done nothing.

Jim Hendry's biggest accomplishment was getting rid of Sammy Sosa and Steve Stone. In the meantime, what did Hendry do to improve this team? Callup Ben Grieve? Eat a case of Oreos? Pass out on the Patterson family couch in Kennesaw, GA.

Jim Hendry loves Oreo's!

Talentwise the Cubs are a 3rd place ballclub. Jim Hendry has made sure of this. You can blame Dusty for anything less than third place.


Watch the Cubs for a day or two and you realize you are watching a team that lacks guts, heart and whatever the kids call it today. While Corey Patterson and Michael Barrett may have become fan favories signing autographs and posing for pictures. They are not the type of players that winning ballclubs are built around. Barrett and Patterson are great for Cubs Care, yet bad for winning ballgames.

Patterson has become the modern day Shawon Dunston, a player that may "one day develop"-when you are 83. Barrett is as overrated as they come. The Cubs don't even trust him handling The Franchise. They would rather have Henry Blanco catch. I would like to see Hank catch Prior, Maddux, and Dempster. Sit Barrett on the bench where he belongs.

Let's see what happens on Sunday,


4/23 Cubs/Pirates 1:20

I just stepped outside. It's a cold crisp day that feels more like late-December than late-April. The weather forecast calls for a high of 40. There is no way I'm going to the game today. Assuming the rain holds off they'll play.

TV: Comcast Sports Net Chicago (DirecTV channel 640)
Radio: 720-AM WGN

Today will be a day for small ball. The wind is howling. It will be blowing in. It's a great day to pitch. Vegas native Greg Maddux is not a big fan of pitching in cold weather. It will be interesting to see what type of stuff the future Hall of Famer has today.

Friday, April 22, 2005

Nomar on Steroids???

Here's a link to an article in the Boston Globe where uber journalist (yeah, I know sportswriters aren't journalists)Bob Ryan hints that Nomar is oft injured due to steriod abuse.

Slow newsday in Boston Bob? I think you're a front runner for the 1060west jackass sportswriter of the week award. Wait. I'll just award it to you without reading the nominees. Come on out to Wrigley and receive your well deserved kick in the groin. Jack ass.


Thursday, April 21, 2005

Now That's an ACE...

Their ACE

Chris Carpenter shutout the Cubs 4-0 on getaway day in St. Louis. Carpenter allowed 7 hits, walked one and struck out 6 Cub hitters. The Cubs keep fighting with the .500 mark. They go to 8-8 and fall two games behind the division leading Redbirds.


1:53 PM: Here we go. Mike Fontenot. I'm wondering if he's related to the former Cub pitcher from the 80's. These are things that probably Ron Santo is talking about, and Pat Hughes is describing the ole dirty stains on the lower left lef of Chris Carpenter's burning red Cardinal home decor.
1: 55 PM: Fontenot flies out, and the inning is over. This makes life ultra fun for all of us. The Cubs have to score in the eighth or it's over. Good times.
1:59 PM: 1 out. 2 out. Just realizing that Mike Fontenot was the first guy off our bench to hit. Our #1 guy off the bench. That's scary.
2:01 PM: Two outs, two strikes on Carpenter. I'm going to take a nap. I hate having a desk that faces the main passage. GRRRRRRRRRR.
2:03 PM: Any thoughts on the Bulls/Wizards series? I do. Everyone is taking Washington. Have you seen this. It's like everyone in the NBA is on crack. I say it's a toss up.
2:06 PM: We're out.
2:08 PM: Okay, maybe we DONT wan't Hairston to play. We need a miracle. The chances of the Cubs winning this game is 3.2%.
2:08:03 PM: Inning over. Wow. That was quick. I am now going to hang myself in a meat locker Goodfellas style.
2:10 PM: Word on the street is that David Eckstein isn't Jewish.
2:11 PM: Eckstein grounds out, and Billy Bob comes in the game.
2:17 PM: I'm on hold with a medical office and, "Here comes my girl" is being played in elevator tones.
2: 18 PM: Larry Walker homers. That's awesome. I totally forgot. Remlinger's AWESOME against Lefty's. Baker's a moron. Where's StarFox?
2:20 PM: Now the kids will remember Larry Walker. How special.
2:22 PM: HEY! StarFox IS in the game...and promptly gives up a double to Poo.
2:23 PM: Homer! Scott Rolen WILL be remembered by the little kids. Great performance StarFox.
2:32 PM: Two on two out, top of 9. Hopefully things will end soon. I need to work.
2:34 PM: Cubs don't have anyone in the 9 hole with power except Du Bois. If he's alive. Somebody wake him up. Barrett realizes a walk is what we're looking for.
2:36 PM: The game has ended. All must go home.
In the end it wasn't one of the greatest performances of all time. The Cubs look thin on offense. No Sammy and No Alou make this team pretty thin.

Welp, hope y'all had a fine time!
Cards 4, Cubs 0


1:38 PM: My computer just delted my log for the fifth. It's good it was deleted. I pretty much ignored that game and gave my opinions on the latest Lewis Black book. But I digress.
1:40 PM: Second and third one out. We're in trouble. Rami up...strike three.
What a joke. This game must be painful to watch.
1:42 PM: Burnitz is out. The game is over. Way to go Dusty. You're a bum.

1:49 PM: Quick inning. I'm sure there was a season changing play.
Too bad I missed it. Good thing we've got Derrick Lee up to lead the 7th with no one on base. That rocks.
I'll be Back.


12;45 PM: You never like it when you come back to your desk, and the Cubs are already done. Apparently the 1982 version of Joaquin Andujar is pitching today for St. Louis.
12:47 PM: Mr. Molina pops out. Looking at the stats Hairston was called out on strikes...which is NEVER good. You're a contact man Hairy. Hit the ball. Play with Ball. Brr Green Bay, No Green Bay. (sorry)
12:48 PM: "The Carpenter saws one off and grounds out, two away in the fourth"-Chip.
12:49 PM: Eckstein Flies out. Heading to the fourth.

Question between innings...Who's replacing Kyle Farnsworth as the 'team drunk' this year? Anyone, Anyone. I think this should be a web poll question...Just my idea.

12:51 PM: Perez flies out to left on an amazing catch by the left fielder! Actually, I have no access to this. I just wanted to spice things up like my chicken sandwich.
12:54 PM: One, two, three. This isn't good. Where's the Rick Wrona suicide squeeze when you need it.
12:55 PM: I just realized you actually need someone on base to do a suicide squeeze. That's a lot to ask.
12:57 PM: Walker, Canadian Ranger walks. This isn't good.
12:59 PM: Pujols, Carribean Stranger pops out. Not bad. I'm predicting a Rolen homer here, though. I don't know. I just know it's a day game in St. Louis meaning that there are a bunch of schools with kids there. Meaning that Rolen has to hit a home run to make the kids happy, so they'll be Cardinal fans for the rest of their meaningless Missouri lives. So they recount at the local tavern about the time that when they were eight, and went with their school to see Scott Rolen beat the Cubs...and how they've LOVED Scott Rolen ever since. These are how Cardinal fans operate, so I'm sure Rolen has to hit one now.
1:02 PM: Two on, one out. Kids screaming.
1:05 PM: Okay, Rolen doubles. Good enough. Cubs can't let 3 score this inning or it's over.
1:10 PM: Wow. That had five run inning written all over it. Good job by Dumpster to keep it 1-0. I'll be back.
Cardinals 1, Cubs 0



I'm eating Cream of Vegetable soup, and having a Chicken Salad Sandwich. Good times (insert theme song.) I would also like to say that having soup without Oyster Crackers is NOT optional.

Hairston,s out, but back to back singles by Nifty Perez and Corey Patterson make me excited.

12:17 PM: Ramirez ground into double play. I can't see anything. Nice play Grudz.
To the bottom of the first we go, and to the shellacking of Ryan Dempster:

Somebody put spices in the Chicken Salad sandwich. I am NOT a fan.
Eckstein flies out, Walker grounds out...We're on our way to Dempster's second no-hitter folks.
12:21 pm: Poo singles on a 2-0 pitch...Probably a fastball. Where's the walks from Dumpy when you need them???
12:22 Pm: Did Edmonds just foul a bunt on 0-1??? That's what gameday's saying. Right about now Mr. Buck is probably saying, "There shows the class and unselfishness of one of today's GREAT players." I hope Buck gets pooped on by Randy Moss during the seventh inning stretch.
12:24 PM: Edmonds strikes out swinging, and I'm on my final bag of oyster crackers. Times could not be better.
END OF 1: Cubs 0, Cards 0.

12:27 PM: Is Jeromy Burnitz still guessing at pitches? Let me know on the comments...It's 3-2...and he grouns out to Eckshtein...Doo...Doo Has...Doo Has MECH!
12:30 PM: Lee Flies out. Hollandsworth comes up. You know it's a bad year when your PHOTO looks like it doesn't have confidence.
12:31 PM: Eckstein gets the job done. Looks like Carpenter is 'sanding down the Cubs.' Hope you got off on that Chip.

12:35 PM: A Grudz double play. Fantastico. Now up, Reggie Sanders...Where's Ray Lankford and Bernard Gilkey, or Brian Jordan? Reggie Sanders, what is he 43?
12:37 PM; He pops out to Hairston.

Cubs 0, Cards 0...End of 2.
I'll be back after I puke up this Chicken Sandwich.

First Inning, and Pre-Game

Preview time for the Cubbie and the Red!
We've got stats galore to get you goin on this Monday afternoon:

Carpenter is 4-1 vs. the Cubs with a 4.24 ERA, while the Dumpster is 2-3 with a 6.17 ERA.

Dempster isn't that great in his two road starts this year, going 1-1 with a 9.39 ERA.

Here are the lineups, with their stats against the starting pitchers:
1. Hairston, 2B 1-14
2. Perez, SS 0-5
3. Patterson, CF7-16
4. Ramirez, 3B 4-14
5. Burnitz, Rf 0-3
6. Lee, 1B 5-19 (?)
7. Hollndswh,LF2-5
8. Blanco, C NA
9. Dumpy

For the RED:
1. Eckstein, SS
2. Walker, RF 5-11
3. Poo, 1B 3-8
4. Edmonds, CF4-14
5. Rolen, 3B 3-19
6. Grudz 7-24
7. Sanders, LF
8. Molina, C
9. Carpenter.

ENJOY THE GAME. Why is Lee batting sixth? RLRLRLRL.

St. Louis Blog City.

My boss is in front of me. So, there will be no images posted to this blog, only unadulterated opinions (not of the Shannon Tweed model), and whordes of fun. I'm going to do an inning by inning update from my office.
Today's game:

Chicago Cubs at St. Louis Cardinals, 12:10 PM, Busch Stadium
We'll see where the Cubs place Nomar and all that good stuff. You can reply in game, or shoot me an email at work...It's not like I'm doing anything important anyway.

Nomar's fallen and he can't get up

Garciaparra goes down in the third inning of a Cub win. Zambrano was brilliant in the victory but the loss of Nomar overshadows the outcome. MRI today.

BTW: The Cubs and Cards play at noon. For those of you outside Chicago Steve Stone will call the game on ESPN.

Wednesday, April 20, 2005

Yes ESPN, there are rivalries west of the Hudson River Valley.

THE Rivalry Renewed

Hell on Earth will be packed tonite as the Cubs come to town.

The Cubs and Redbirds will renew their great rivalry tonite at Busch Stadium -A.K.A. Hell on Earth. ESPN won't hype this rivalry up like they do Yankees/Red Sox. How could they? Pete Gammons won't go, neither will Harold Reynolds, nor will any of the other idiots on Baseball Tonight. Of course neither teams ballpark is within driving range of Bristol, CT. Screw ESPN, If you are a Cub or Cardinal fan, you live in the midwest, you understand the this rivalry. If you live in the east enjoy your Yanks and Sox.

The Cubs hold a slight edge versus the Redbirds since they began play in 1892. The Cubs have won 1,150 and lost 1,053 vs. the Cards. Busch Stadium has been a house of horrors for the Cubs. Since 1966 they are 136-187 against the Cards at Busch.

As a Chicagoan and a Cub fan it's pretty hard to lose to a team from a third rate river city like St. Louis. Have you ever spent any time in St. Louis? It's hot. The river is filthy and has a real odor. St. Louis is one of those towns that can't decide whether or not they are a southern city or a midwestern town. They lack an identity.

Does St. Louis have any redeeming qualities?

As a Cub fan I HATE the Cardinals. I HATE The Genius. I HATE their crap ballpark. I HATE any beer that is brewed in Missouri. I HATE the hillbilly fans that drive up to Chicago to watch the Cubs and Cardinals at Wrigley Field. These people tip the bartenders and beer vendors nickels and complain that everything costs too much. The secret is we up the prices so they will only come north once a year.

Zambrano will go to the mound for the Cubs on Wednesday. Carlos had a little run in with Jimmy Edmonds on July 19th last season. Carlos also had his career high 12 strikeouts vs. the Cardinals last May in a no-decison (1-0 Cub Loss) at Busch.

Zambrano will have to keep his emotions in check.

Crazy Carlos will try and keep his temper in check and he will need to. The Cardinal lineup is loaded. Still the Cubs can play with these guys at least with Big Z on the hill. Pujols lifetime average vs. Zambrano is only .211, Rolen's i.231, Edmonds' .250, Walker's .222 and Sanders' .182.

This might be one of the few series where Dusty actually has an advantage over the opposing manager. The Genius is always trying to reinvent baseball strategy. You never know when LaRussa will come up with some crazy idea, like hitting the pitcher 8th. If the Cubs keep it close LaRussa may give them the game in the late innings.

The Genius will match whits with Dusty tonight.

Take a long look at that idiot above. I hope Zambrano is on tonight. Go Cubs!

Cubs/Cards Pennant Chases Begin Again...

The Chicago Cubs and St. Louis Cardinals will meet for the first time this year Wednesday, as the two rivals renew this century old skirmish.

The teams first met in 1892 when ole Kid Gleason faced Ad Gumbert in the first game of the '92 campaign. The Cubs would win the first matchup 14-10 at the First Sportsman's Park.

(Side bar to this, the young kid Gleason would later become the manager of...anyone, anyone...YES, the 1919 Chicago Black Sox. Looks like the Cards were grooming cheaters right from the beginning!)
(Double side bar, glancing at 'Kid's' stats, the punk was 38-17 in 1890 with Philly. 38-17? And we can't get Wood or prior to START 30?)
(Triple side bar. I did not find if this Gleason was related to a later Gleason who would later show on a certain Chicago Sports Writers spot in the 1980's...but, I digress.)

What makes this rivalry so great is not just the proximity between the two cities, but the fights the two squads have had for pennants, division titles, and wild card berths through the years.

Here is a listing of great September Cubs-Cardinals moments:

1930: The St. Louis Cardinals dethroned the Cubs from atop the NL in '30 going 31-6 down the stretch to down the Cubs by 2 games. No word yet on how many shots Hack Wilson downed after the Cubs were eliminated.

1935: With the Cubs six games back in the NL picture, Wrigleyville was set to close shop, and gear for '36. The Bruins had other ideas though ripping off a 21 straight victories en route to a two game pennant win over the Cards. Winners of 18 straight, the Cubs faced the Cards for a five game set, and Lon Warneke, Charlie Root, and Bill 'don't call me Spaceman' Lee won games 19, 20, and 21 in a row to shut down Lou-ville and wrap up the title.

1938: Cubs fans may remember the 'Homer in the Gloamin' as the big win for the '38 squad, BUT, the Cubs clinched the NL pennant with a 10-3 win a couple days later over St. Louis, in another pitching gem by Charlie Root.

1945: The '45 campaign was a roaring success for the Cubs, BUT, the pennant race should've been over much sooner. The Cards were the ones to blame. The Cubs lost 16 of 22 to the Cards during the year, keeping the race closer than it should have been.

1946: With St. Louis leading by 1 game over Brooklyn with three games remaining, the 'lame duck Cubs' stole two of three from the Cards forcing St. Louis into a tie with Brooklyn for the NL title. Although the Cards would beat the Dodgers 2-0, this showing of resiliency sparked the rivalry for years to come.

1949: With a half game lead with three games left, the Cubs put the pressure on the Cards again. With their season over, the Cubs took the first two games of the set, and eliminated the Cards from the NL race on the final weekend, and giving the Dodgers the '49 NL title.

1967: On July 24th, 1967 the Cubs and Cards were tied for first atop the NL standings. The Cards would give the young Cubs a taste of 'what it takes' by ripping off 8 wins in 9 games against the Cubs the rest of the way, sending the Cubs into a tailspin for the rest of the season. The Cards, of course, would go on to win the '67 crown.

1969: Many people can point to what they want on the '69 collapse. But, losing 4 of 6 to the Cards in the final 1 1/2 months doesn't do much for this writer.
On 9/13/1969 the Cubs were still only 2 1/2 games behind the Mets for first in the N.L. East. With the Cubs leading 4-3 in the eighth, the Cards would rally to tie, AND with two out and two on Joe Torre hit a two run single to give STL the 6-4 win. For all the talk about Don Young's missed fly balls...this game may have been the bigger back breaker.

1970: Many forget the Cubs were only 1 1/2 games behind Pittsburgh entering a 9/23 contest with St. Louis. The Cards would sweep this double header behind Bob Gibson and Jerry Reuss by 2-1 scores. Good bye Cubs.

1974: Cardinal fans may remember the Cardinals lost chances in their race with Pittsburgh for the '74 title... On 9/28/74, the Cubs rallied down 3-0, led by Bill Madlock's three run triple to beat the Cards 8-3, and put the final touches on St. Louis' push for the championship.

1984: Much talk is made of the Sandberg game in June of '84, but it was the Cubs' sweep of a HUGE double header in St. Louis that pretty much wrapped up the title. The Cubs entered that game losers of five straight. After all the crap we've gone though...not even a five game lead with seven games left seemed safe.

1985: I feel sorry for anyone who bought Cubs-Cardinals tickets for the final series of the year at Busch. Not to mention the Cubs went in the tank, you had to watch the Cards clinch over the Cubs 7-1 on the second to final day of the year.

1987: Andre did all he could. The Cubs took 2 of 3 from the Cards at Wrigley, and shrunk the Cards' lead to 2 1/2 games over the Mets with one week left. Many Cub fans will never forget Dawson's eighth inning at bat with every one standing.

1989: The Cards had nibbled the Cubs lead to only 1/2 game going into the big Saturday matchup. Luis Salazar proved to be worth the mid season trade by singling to tie, and doubling to win in the tenth. Dawson's knees popping rounding third can still be heard if you stand at the right point in Wrigley on a cold September evening.

1996: Stupid me. Stupid us. I thought that coming in 5 1/2 back their might be one chance, just ONE chance the Cubs could make a run in '96. Ryno's two run homer in the eighth gave the Cubs a 3-1 lead, but the Cards rallied for four in the bottom half including Brian Jordan's game winning two run homer off Turk Wendell.

2003: The Cubs take four of five in thrilling fashion.

2005: ??????????????????????????????????????

Tuesday, April 19, 2005

Corey's first inning

This site complain's alot about the lack of patience shown by the Cub cf. That is justified. Still you have to give credit when credit is due. In the first inning tonite Corey showed the tools that the Cubs saw when they selected him with their first round pick (3rd overall) in 1998.

Corey hit second in Dusty's lineup tonite. In the top of the first he hit a solo HR to right center field. But the best of Corey would come in the bottom of the inning. Corey flashed some big time leather. Griffey sent Corey all the way to the wall in CF where Patterson made a fine catch. After a nice running catch by DuBois, Patterson did a great Tori Hunter impersonation! Joe Randa hit a ball to right center. Patterson ran back and made a great leaping catch, stealing extra bases-if not a homerun from Randa. Corey got a standing ovation leaving the field.

Corey Patterson saves a run or two as he makes a great leaping grab in the first inning on a drive by Joe Randa.

The talent that C-Pat showed in that inning was brilliant. It is that talent that has Jim Hendry and many Cub fans telling Patterson critics(like myself) to be patient. I hope Hendry and many of you Corey-backers are right.

Speed kills. On Tuesday nite Corey's speed caused trouble for the Reds defense. Ramirez' bases loaded, broken bat, single scored Prior and Hairston. On the play Corey hustled from first to third. Griffey came up with the ball and tried to throw out Patterson at third. He threw the ball past Randa into the dugout. Patterson scored and Aramis was awarded another base. On Sunday in Pittsburgh Corey's speed caused an error on a throw to first on a bunt attempt. Nomar drove Patterson in with a sac fly and the Cubs had manufactured the tying run. Patterson's speed is a weapon the Cubs need to use.

Patterson runs down another ball hit by Randa in the 8th.

Still the whole key to Patterson's career is gonna be his command of the strike zone. He still has struck out 13 times in 14 games. The Walkathon has not moved since the Sunday game against Milwaukee.

Will Patterson be this generation's Shawon Dunston or will he develop into the 5-tool talent Hendry and the Corey-backers expect. Hopefully we'll start to see more of the brilliance Patterson showed in the first inning in the coming days, weeks, months and years.

Monday, April 18, 2005

Whoops, Dusty did it again.

Monday night, Kerry Wood and the bullpen could not hold a 4 run lead. The Cubs batters failed to add to their lead in a pinball ballpark. That was only part of the problem.

The real travesty came in the Cub dugout. Dusty Baker sat on the bench and had brain cramp after brain cramp. There was a foul ball hit down the rightfield line where a fan interefered with Jeromy Burnitz’s opportunity to catch the ball. Dusty sat on his hands. He didn’t run out to argue the call. He didn’t even pop out of the dugout. Aurilia followed this up with a single that scored the tying runs.

In the wacky eighth (why the hell was Leicester pitching to begin with? Rusch had only went one, two, three in the 7th) with two outs Leicester who was struggling pitched to the eighth place hitter. Why didn’t they walk LaRue and have the Reds bring in a pinch hitter. At this point the Reds were down to two position players on the bench including the backup catcher. What happened. Leicester serves up a double to LaRue.

Jim Hendry, the time is now. Get rid of Dusty and save the Cubs season.

Welcome to the Cubs Len Kasper. Len sounded frustrated at the end of the game. Kasper seems like a nice guy. As he becomes a Cub fan he'll realize games like this are the norm.

Ronnie Wickers was hit by a car Monday afternoon in Wrigleyville. Wickers had a minor back injury.

Cubs/Reds LIVE Blogcast 6:10 CT

Cubs (6-6) @ Reds (6-5)
Tonight 6:10

TV: ESPN or Comcast Sports Net (in Chicago)
Radio: WGN 720-AM
Internet: 1060west Live Blogcast

Kerry Wood (0-1, 5.84 ERA) will face young RHP Matt Belisle (1-1, 3.52 ERA)

The Cubs come into this one, after winning two close games with the Pirates over the weekend. The offense should come alive in hitter friendly Great American Ballpark!

The Cub offense will come to life at hitter friendly Great American Ballpark tonite.

It'll be real interesting to see how Wood pitches in Cincy. Wood looked awful last start. The pressure is starting to stack up against the veteran RHP. If Wood wants to be the clubhouse leader he had better start doing something on the field.

It's Gametime

6:03 Nomar is not gonna play tonite. Perez is at SS hitting second. Hairston is leading off playing 2B, Patterson will hit 3rd. First pitch in a minute...

6:10 The top of the first is underway. Temperature is in the low 70's. Hairston leadsoff, he groundsout 4-3.

6:12 Perez line to Aurilia.

6:13 This kid is throwing strikes. Corey's down 0-1. PATTERSON BLASTS A HR TO THE BULLPEN IN RF. Cubs 1 - Reds 0.

6:14 Aramis seems to be swinging a missing more than I remember. RAMIREZ HITS IT DEEP TO LEFT. RONNIE MUST BE YELLING ON 'GN "BACK TO BACK JACKS!" Cubs 2 - Reds 0. (Kerry Wood couldn't ask for a better start!)

6:16 Burnitz with a full count just misses 3 in a row hitting one off the top of the fence in LF. It's a double. The hottest Cub DLee's comin' up...

side: The box with the bases on Comcast really sucks. Put a color up there so we can see who's on base.

6:19 DLEE HITS A BOMB ON TOP OF THE BATTERS EYE IN CF. 2 RUN HR. Cubs 4 - Reds 0 . I can't wait to here how far that went! 2 more RBi's for Lee he now has 16 on the season. CUB POWER!

6:21 Hollandsworth grounds out to Jimenez. At the end of a half Cubs 4 Redlegs comin' up...

side- I wonder who is broadcasting the game on ESPN? It's blacked out in Chicago.

6:24 Jimenez flies to Hollandsworth. 1 away.

6:25 Junior Griffey is hitting second. Junior is still looking for his first HR. Kerry looks decent early. Wood strikesout Griffey on a ball in the dirt. 2 down.

6:27 Wood gets ahead of Casey with a quick strike, now a ball one & one. Kerry misses high and outside. Stoney talked about Kerry missing with that pitch today on the Score. Casey singles to left center.

6:28 C'mon Kerry. Randa lines one to center. Corey makes a good catch running in. Good inning for Wood. Great inning for the Northsiders. Cubs 4-Reds 0

side- Did the Cubs let Dave Otto go? Or did Comcast give him a low ball offer like they did

6:31 Barrett grounds out to short.

6:32 Wood drives one to left. He misses a HR by a foot. High off the LF wall Wood has a double. This kid Belisle is not gonna be in the game much longer if he keeps hanging breaking balls to the Cub hitters.

6:36 Hairston way out in front hits a bomb foul to LF. This is batting practice so far for Cub batters. Belisle just threw his 35th pitch to Hairston. It's full...Jerry just misses a double on a foul down the thirdbase line...still full Hairston draws a walk his 4th of the season.

6:40 Perez is up with runners at first and second. The Cubs have seen 45 pitches from Belisle. Neifi lines to Dunn. 2 down.

6:42 Patterson's up, first pitch swinging Corey grounds to Jimenez. Cubs leave 2.

6:44 as Vin Scully would say this matchup is "Power vs. Power" Adam Dunn vs. Kerry Wood. DUNN WINS THIS BATTLE WITH A MONSTER HR TO RF. Cubs 4 -Reds 1

6:45 Wily Mo Pena's up. This guy can hit. He lines to Aramis. Aurilia flies to Patterson. (Why don't the Reds trade Kearns, Dunn, Pena or Griffey?)

6:47 LaRue grounds out Ramirez to DLee. End of Two, Cubs 4 - Redlegs 1

beer update -- I'm doing this live in the bunker. The problem is I'm on my last Old Style Light. Should I go to Jewel and get beer or just tough it out?

side-Man, Jiggs looks bad in the promo's for his show. He must be pushin' 4-1/2 notes.

6:51 Aramis lines hard to Wily Mo (Pena reminds me of a young Sosa.)

6:52 BURNITZ HITS ONE DEEP TO RF. CUB POWER. HR NUMBER FOUR OF THE NIGHT. Cubs 5 - Reds 1. Next Lee hits a "duck-snort" down the RF line. Lee goes to far on the turn and is caught, Pena throws him out trying to reach second. Two away.

6:54 Hollandsworth pops to Randa. After 2-1/2 Cubs 5 - Reds 1.

beer update: I just finished my last OS Light. Oh what to do. The rest of this game might be alcohol free.

side: Scottie Pippen is gonna call the Bulls playoff games with Tom Doerr and Red Kerr. What the hell is that all about?

6:56 Jacob Cruz hits for Belisle. He lines one to LF. Hollandsworth makes a nice catch on the warning track. Jimenez flies to Hollandsworth. Two quick outs for KW.

6:58 Griff Junior lines a double to left. His fifth of the year.

7:01 Wood's behind Casey 3-0. C'mon Kerry. Right down central it's 3-1. now full. Casey is way out of the batters box. Wood walks Casey. 2 on 2 out. Here's Randa.

7:03 Randa goes to 2-2 and Wood strikes him out on a ball in the dirt. End of 3 Cubs 5 - Redlegs 1

Final line on Belisle 3 IP, 7 H (6 extra base), 5 R, 5 ER, 1 BB, O K, 4 HR. He's lucky it's just 5-1.

7:06 Ben Weber the ex-Angel(remember the '02 series Dusty?) is in to pitch. This guy has that crazy motion. Barrett fans. (he's really struggling)

7:08 Wood groundsout 6-3

7:09 Here's Hairston, Jr. Jerry is hit by the pitch. He's on with two down.

7:10 Neifi smacks one to Jimenez. He's out 4-3. Cubs still lead 5-1

7:13 Bottom of 4. DUNN HITS ANOTHER BOMB TO RCF. HIS 2nd TONITE. It's now 5-2. This park plays like Coors Fd. 4 lifetime HR's for Dunn off of Wood. At least tonite they were both solo shots.

7:15 Wood strikes out Pena with a couple of high fastballs. Wily Mo expanded the strikezone.

7:17 Aurilia expands the zone and goes fishing at a slider outside. Nice pitch for Wood.

7:20 LaRue (David Weathers is up in the pen for Cincy) strikesout looking on a fastball on the outerhalf right on the black. Wood looks good through 4. Cubs 5 - Redlegs 2

side- Wood has thrown 61 pitches through 4. He seems to be working at a really good pace.

7:22 Patterson hits a 1-1 pitch between first and second for a single. Let's see if Corey moves. He doesn't as Aramis grounds to Randa. Corey's out at second. Jimenez doesn't throw to first. Ramirez is safe on a fielder's choice.

7:24 Burnitz lines a single to right.

7:26 DLee has 5 straight hits. (The homer in the first was measured at 482') The streak end as Lee hits one in the hole. Aurilia gets Burnitz at second. Lee's safe at first. Ramirez is at third.

7:28 Holly hits a slow roller back to Weber. End of 4-1/2 Cubs 5 - Reds 2

7:31 Ryan Freel will pinch hit for Weber. (Weber went 2 IP with 2 H, no runs and 1 strikeout) Freel doubles down the LF line.

7:33 Jimenez grounds to Neifi, Freel to third. Junior Griffey strolls to the plate.

side- Wasn't Junior just awesome when he was on the M's. The Kingdomes was made for Junior.

7:35 Griffey with an infield hit (Aramis couldn't come up with it.) FREEL SCORES. It's Cubs 5 - Reds 3

7:36 Hairston and Perez turn a nifty 4-6-3 DP on Casey. Wood's out of the 5th with the lead. Cubs 5 - Reds 3

7:38 ex-Cub David Weathers is in to pitch. Barrett needs a hit. He's hitting .135. He struck out throwing his bat at a ball that was two feet outside. He's really struggling.

7:40 Wood will hit. He groundsout 6-3.

7:41 Hairston better take a few pitches and let Wood get a breather. Ball one... a little fly to left field that Dunn overruns. Hairston takes 2B. We'll see how they score that. Len says a single and an error. Only the second error of the year by the Reds in their 12th game.

7:42 Hairston steal 3b.

7:43 c'mon Neifi. Neifi, with an insurance run sitting at third, strikesout on a check swing. Cubs strand another runner. It's 5-3

7:47 Wood to Randa (Adam Dunn on deck) who strikesout. That was a nasty slider. Kerry has six.

7:48 Dunn up with nobody on (thank god). He already has 2 HR tonite. Dunn went on a check swing but he ran half way to first. It's 3-2. Kerry throws one to the backstop. Dunn is on first and Wily Mo Pena represennts the tying run. Oh Boy.

7:50 (Mercker's up in the Reds pen) Pena doubles off the LF wall. Kerry's in trouble.

7:53 Aurilia (Rusch up in the Cubs pen) misses a double down the line by an eyelash. Rothschild to the mound. Wood has thrown 86 pitches. Aurilia hits one down the line. Fan interference is not called. Dusty did not argue. What the hell is going on? AURILIA SINGLES TO LF ON A BROKEN BAT. HOLLANDSWORTH DOESN'T THROW HOME. It's Cubs 5 - Reds 5.

7:56 LaRue fouls to DLee, nice catch.

7:57 Austin Kearns is gonna pinch hit in the bottom of the sixth. He grounds out 5-4. (Wood has thrown 95 pitches)

Cubs 5
Reds 5

8:00 As Chip would say: "Top of the hour in the Queen City".

8:01 Mercker's in. Corey lead's off. He's out trying to bunt his way on 1-3.

8:03 Aramis is 1-3 tonight with the HR in the first. The Reds bullpen has looked good tonight. This game looks like alot of Cub games last year where they would get a lead early and not add on any runs. Ramirez groundsout 5-3.

8:04 Burnitz a triple away from the cycle steps in. Hits a shot back up the middle. The ball bounces off of Mercker to Aurilia who throws Burnitz out. Get the piano off of your back Jeromy. Cubs fail to do anything. Cubs 5 - Reds 5

8:06 Wood is gone. Glendon Rusch is on. The line on Wood 6 IP, 8 H, 5 R, 5 ER, 2 BB, 6 K's, 2 HR. Wood's ERA is now 6.38. Yikes.

8:07 Jimenez k's

8:08 Griffey k's

8:10 Casey lines to Neifi. 3 up 3 down for Glendon Spahn. After 7, Cubs 5 - Redlegs 5. C'mon sticks. Come to life.

8:12 DLee is down 0-2 to Mercker. He flies to Pena in RF.

8:14 Hollandsworth against Mercker. Grounds to Casey. See ya' Todd. Why is Hollandsworth playing everyday?

8:16 Barrett who is in a horrible slump (0-24) lines out to Pena. Barrett's now 0-25. Three up three down again. The Cubs have only managed 3 hits since Belisle left the game.

Bottom of the 8th

8:20 Leicester is in to pitch. He walks Randa in front of Dunn. What the f^%&.

8:21 Leicester is down 2-0 to Dunn. Now it's 3-0. He walked Dunn on 4 straight. The winning run is a second. Pena coming up. Rothschild to the mound.

8:23 Pena misses a double down the line. (Bartosh is up in the Cub pen) Leicester hits Pena. Bases loaded.

8:25 Ground ball to Ramirez. He steps on third. He throws home. Barrett tags the runner at third and throws the ball past Ramirez. Dunn scores. Michael Barrett is not playing smart. He was throwing to 3b. Reds 6 - Cubs 5.

8:26 hold on a minute this is confusing. The runner that came home and scored Adam Dunn was forced by Ramirez. It's Red 5 - Cubs 5.

8:29 JASON LARUE DOUBLES TO OVER COREY's HEAD. The Reds now lead 7-5. This bullpen sucks. The Cubs blew a 4 run lead and now trail. Another bad 8th inning. Go figure.

8:31 Lopez hitting for Mercker. He fans.

After 8 Cubs trail 7-5

Danny Graves comes in to close it out for Cincy.

8:35 Nomar, came in on Dusty's flip flop in before the eighth, walks.

8:37 Hairston is up. He represents the tying run. He strikesout at a ball in the dirt.

8:40 Nomar to second on a wild pitch. Don Gullett to the hill to chat with Graves.

8:41 Neifi Perez (0-4 tonight) lines a single to right center. NOMAR SCORES. Reds 7 - Cubs 6.

8:42 Corey takes a strike and lines a single to right. Neifi to second. Only one out.

8:43 Ramirez drives Griffey to the warning track. Neifi to third. Two out.

8:45 c'mon Burnitz (3-4 tonight) swinging strike. fouls off a ball in the dirt. Burnitz grounds out to Jimenez.



Sunday, April 17, 2005

Not So Live Blogcast: Cubs at Pirates

Posted by Hello

Sunday, April 17th 2005 @ 12:35PM CST
TV: WGN, Radio: WGN 720AM

1st Inning:
Cubs 0 Opponent 0

C-Patterson - strikes out. This is your lead off guy?
Hairston - Flies out to Tike Redmon F-8
Nomaah- Popped out to first. P-3

Site seen - The Roberto Clemente Bridge

Bottom of the 1st

Matt Lawton - ropes a single to RF
Jack Wilson - flies out to Bernitz and doubles up Lawton with a great throw to D. Lee
Jason Bay - strikes out looking

Top of the 2nd
Cubs 0 Pirates 0

Ramirez out 3-1 on the first pitch
D. Lee - out 4-3
Overheard: The first wacked out reference by Bob Brenly and the other guy to eating catfish out of the Pittsburg rivers.
Burnitz - flies out to Wilson 3-2

Bottom of the 2nd

I think we just found out what happened to Kerry Wood's control, its in Ben Wallace's afro:

Mackowiak - Hairston makes a great stop 4-3
Craig Wilson - out 5-3
Tike Redmond - out to D. Lee 3

Top of the 3rd
Just saw a commercial for Chevy. What do Dusty and Chevy have in common? Neither can manage a pitching staff.

Blanco - Flies out to Jason Bay 8
Maddux - Reached on E-5. Finally a baserunner
C Pat - a 1st pitch swing and an out to 3

inane game note: 3 Cub batters have now gone out on 1st pitch swings. Can we work the count a little bit?

Bottom of the 3rd

Ty Wiggington - out 4-3 (Do you think this guy's nickname is Wiggy?)
David Ross - F-9 to Burnitz
Mark Redman - SINGLE past Maddux's glove
Lawton - Hollandsworth either loses the ball or flat out does not hussle after it as the ball drops in for a two base hit. Maddux looks pissed.
Wilson hits a slow roller to Hairston who bare hands and throws to Lee, a sweep tag misses. redman scores. No argument from Dusty, I think he's getting his kid for the postgame interview. Bay singles to LF. Lawton scores. Cub 0 -Pirates 2
Mackowiak strikes out looking, thank god.

Top of the 4th
Cubs 0 Pitt 2

Hairston flies out
Nomar flies to RF (first pitch swinging)
Aramis doubles to the gap in RF.
DLee singles to shallow RCF scoring Aramis Cubs 1- Pitt 2
Burnitz grounds out 4-3.

Bottom of 4
Craig Wilson flies to CPat
Redman's out 1-3
Wiggington lines to Ramirez

Top of 5th
Cubs 1 Pitt 2

Hollandsworth walks
Blanco hits into a 4-6-3 doubleplay.
Maddux singles to left but is out not hustling as he tries to turn it into a double 5-4. Nice play by Wiggington.

Bottom of 5
Ross K's
Redmon 4-3
Lawton grounds to DLee, nice play

Top of 6
Cubs 1 Pitt 2
CPat reaches second on an error by Craig Wilson
Hairston sacrifices Corey to third.
Nomar drives him in on a Sac fly to RF. Game tied 2-2.
Hey-small ball
A-Ram walks
DLee single to RCF. A-Ram to third
Burnitz 4-6
3 runners left so far

Bottom of 6
Wilson 6-3
Bay 6-3
Mackowiak 9 (that was quick)

Top of 7
Cubs 2 - Pitt 2
When is Bob Brenly gonna read the Everwood promo?

Hollandsworth lines to Lawton who makes a great catch.
Blanco 6-3 still not off the schnide
Dubois (hitting for Maddux) broken bat grounder 5-3

Maddux is out. 77 pitches, 6 IP, 5 H, 3 SO, 0 BB, 2 ER

Bottom of 7
Cubs 2 Pirates 2
Our new Cubs pitcher is... Michael Wuertz

Craig Wilson with a basehit to LF
Salomon Torres is up and working in the Bucs pen
Redman flies to Patterson
Wiggy flies to Burnitz
Ross to Hairston. Nice job Michael Wuertz.

Top of 8
Cubs 2 - Pirates 2
Patterson flies to the track in CF
Hairston singles to LF
Nomar singles, Hairston- heads up - makes third.

Pitching Change. Torres is now in w/ runners on the corners.

Aramis walks
Bases loaded and so am I!
DLee RBI single to LF Hairston & Nomar score! (Small ball works)
Burnitz 4-6-3
CUBS 4 - Pirates 2

Bottom of the 8th
Pitching Change - Mike Remlinger is now in the game

Pinch Hitter - Sorry, never caught the name, but he's out 4-3
Lawton - out 1-3
Wilson - reached on E-5 (tough hop for Ramirez as he tallies his 3rd E of the season)

Pitching Change - Here comes Chad Fox

Bay - walks C'mon I don't want another game like Friday.
Mackowiack - out F-7. Disaster has been averted.

Top of the 9th

Hollandsworth - out
Blanco - out
Macias - walks
C-Pat - out (struck out looking) I'm through with commenting on this.

Bottom of the 9th

Pitching Change - In comes LaTroy (I'd keep my eyes closed, but then I couldn't document this)

Craig Wilson
0-1 (good pitch)
0-2 (93 MPH on the gun, good dtuff LaTroy)
0-3 (Struck out looking. Now that's how a closer pitches)

Tike Redmon
1-0 (C'mon, lets go here)
2-0 (92 MPH)
3-0 (Are you kidding me?)
3-1 (Finally, a strike)
4-1 (Nice walk there, Russel)

Daryl Ward (in to pinch hit)
0-1 (94 MPH)
Ball in play 4-6-3


Here's the Final:

Cubs 4 7 1
Pirates 2 6 2

WP - Wuertz 1-0, LP Redman 1-1
Save - Hawkins (2)

The 1060west Player and Goat of the Game:

Player of the Game:
Vehere - D. Lee
Corn Cobb Dress - D. Lee

Goat of the Game:
Vehere - C. Patterson
Corn Cobb Dress - T. Hollandsworth
 Posted by Hello

Dusty and Greg Maddux take on the Pirates in the rubber match.

Will Corey take a walk?

Will 1060west buy the bar another round of drinks?

Come out the the Full Shilling and see for yourself.

Friday, April 15, 2005

baseball and civility

i've rambled here about the cubs' and cub fans' problems with self-control, which were so evident in zambrano's opening day ejection. but i think that i understate the nature of the problem severely if i limit it to wrigley field and the cub clubhouse.

in the aftermath of last night's near-brouhaha following a play on a ball rolling down past pesky's pole, in which a boston fan took a slap at gary sheffield, i think more can be said about the general deterioration of fan behavior at ballparks in america. (and i don't exclude myself.)

now, mobs have always been reckless. john mcgraw in 1894 famously sparked a brawl in an orioles-braves game, into which the crowd joined, that resulted in the destruction by fire of over 170 buildings in boston's south end.

but things changed quite a lot between 1894 and 1950. the america of 1894 was a rapidly-industrializing primitive backwater; while europe basked in the antonine light of la belle epoque, the united states resembled nothing so much as perhaps current-day india or indonesia. the masses were uneducated, destitute, discontent and easily riled to anarchy. law and order were frequently kept only by open suppression (as surrounded chicago's haymarket riot, for example) and even military intervention (as in the pullman strike, also of 1894). fort sheridan, after all, is located where it is to ensure the ease of calling the army into chicago to keep order.

by 1950, america had been more fully integrated into the mainstream of western civilization (or what remained of it). public schooling and the advent of socialism had done much to reinforce the rule of law, and war and depression had forged an national character which valued sacrifice and discipline. the idea of a riot in the stands at a ballgame -- or attacking a player -- became as inconceivable an affront to society to the average american as it had been to the average victorian gentleman of london.

now that has changed again, it would seem. prosperity and freedom have worked their epicurean spell as law and discipline has relaxed and sacrifice has become increasingly disdained for selfishness and arrogance -- and the effects of our self-centeredness are showing in the entropy of society, not least in baseball. fans taking a poke at a player or charging the field in a complete loss of self-control are reflective of a declining sense of order and increased confrontation on the field. for players, long gone are days when a knockdown pitch could be construed as a simple signal understood by both parties; now, it is an attack on manhood, an affront to inflated pride, and an excuse to act upon delusions of self-importance. for fans, acts of self-expression are no longer confined to cheers and jeers. short of charging onto the field, childish outbursts have become the norm at the old ballpark.

 Posted by Hello

while i'm sure no one wants to return to the barbarism of emerging-market america, i can't help but wonder at what sign or symptom these acts are manifest of.

it's too much to read into this single sheffield incident the decline of civility. but, insofar sport is a mirror of the society which produces it, there is reason to fear for all of us in the broader decay of sportsmanship and collegiality in baseball among both players and fans. as a lover not only of baseball but of the magical interplay of life and law that it so perfectly symbolizes, it saddens me deeply.

Thursday, April 14, 2005

XM Radio a baseball fans dream

Growing up a baseball geek in the midwest I loved listening to the Cubs, Sox, Brewers and even the hated Cardinals on the radio. Some nights when the winds blew just right I could here Ernie Harwell calling the Tigers or Marty Brenneman calling the Reds. Other nights Indians or Twins games might come in. It was always exciting to listen to another teams version of Vince and Lou.

Growing up a Cub fan, Vince Lloyd and Lou Boudreau were my guides to the season. Most kids watched on tv listening to Jack or later Harry. I did that occassionally, but listening to a game on the radio was the best. I don't wanna go Bob Costas on you and talk about how much better the game was when we were younger. The innocence and all the rest... blah blah blah... But baseball on the radio was and is fantastic!

XM Satellite Radio had baseball/radio geeks like me in mind when they agreed to broadcast all MLB games in 2005. Not only do they broadcast every game they have a 24/7 baseball station XM 175 MLB HomePlate.

A couple of weeks ago I broke down and went to Best Buy and bought an XM receiver. I bought a kit for the car and a boom box for use at home. XM is the coolest thing! I am on the road alot for work. I usually drive. While driving the past few weeks I have caught parts of games from Atlanta(Chippy on the call), New York, Florida, San Franciso, and Tampa(it was the only game on at the time). I dreamed of being able to listen to Yankee/Red Sox games when I was a kid. If it wasn't the NBC Game of the Week, we waited for the boxscore the next day. Now I can drive around the midwest surfing between a Dodger game in LA and a Washington Nationals game at RFK. Isn't technology amazing!

The fact that I can listen to any big league game throughout the season without the blackout rules that apply to DirecTV's MLBEXtra Innings or is just awesome. If you are a baseball fan and cannot get enough baseball, checkout XM. If you are a Cub fan outside of the midwest XM will give you the opportunity to listen to Pat and Ron during all home games.

Wednesday, April 13, 2005

Put me in coach

Ready to play??

Looks like Jerry Hairston jr. is making a case that he wants to be the lead-off hitter for the Cubs. In his first start he is one walk shy of the Corey Patterson walk-a-thon (drawing a walk in his first AB in the lead-off spot. See how its done?).

You can hold out judgment until later, but I think we all know what this is going to start. I'll let the "Evil Media" do the rest of the job for us.

UPDATE: Hairston hit by pitch in the 2nd. The walk-a-thon has been tied up.

UPDATE2: Hairston doubles in the 3rd.

Ok, I see a pattern and you don't need to be Dusty to figure it out. With Walker nursing the bum wheel, Hairston jr., needs to be in the 1 spot. End of story.

Just my humble opinion. You are now free to bash it...

Wood's self destructive first

I snuck away at lunch to watch the first inning. What I saw was alarming. Kerry Wood, pitching with the wind howling in means it should be a good day for the Cubs. Instead Wood pitched one of the worst innings I can remember. In the inning Wood had no idea where the ball was going. His release point was no where to be found. Here's a quick recap:

-G Blum homered to right.
-M Loretta hit by pitch.
-M Loretta stole second.
-B Giles walked.
-R Klesko walked, M Loretta to third, B Giles to second.
-P Nevin grounded into fielder's choice to shortstop, M Loretta scored, R Klesko out at second, B Giles to third.
-R Hernandez singled to right, B Giles scored, P Nevin to second.
-X Nady reached on infield single to pitcher, P Nevin to third, R Hernandez to second, P Nevin scored, R Hernandez to third, X Nady to second on throwing error by pitcher K Wood.
-J Garcia struck out swinging.
-J Peavy struck out looking.

4 Runs, 3 Hits, 1 Errors (He's lucky only 4 scored)

In the inning he threw 37 pitches, 20 were strikes.

With the current state of the Cubs offense, effectively game 1 is lost. I have grown tired of the whole Kerry Wood act. The guy is making $9.5 million this year. He's making that kind of money and pitching like a guy that is destined for middle relief. Why did Hendry sign a pitcher with back trouble, mechanic issues, who has never won more than 14 games in a year to this deal?

UPDATE 2:15 After 6.2 IP Kerry is done. Here is his final line: IP 6.2, H 9, R 7, ER 6, BB 2, K 6, HR 3, Current ERA 5.84

The Northsiders trail 7-2. Gametime temp was 47 degrees and the wind was blowing in from CF at 16 mph. It should have been a good day to pitch.

Anyways, at least we can hope to enjoy Game 2...

burnie versus sammy

a reader comment set me thinking about the rightfield situation for this year. burnitz's nice start has opened a window for the optimists, even going so far as deriding sosa -- ostensibly as a submission to the corporate propaganda line.

but i am not an optimist. i remember sammy wistfully. without him and alou, i fear for the cub outfield generally and for burnitz particularly. never again do i want to live through a tawd hundley. and yet, here we are.

so here's a running comparison. i'll try to link back to it now and again this season. if both stay healthy -- always the caveat -- it will be interesting to judge the degree of loss (or gain, if you're an optimist) that burnie will yield for the cubs.

as of today:

burnitz -- 32 AB, 7 R, 10 H, 1 HR, 3 RBI, 1 BB, 9 K, .313 BAA, .333 OBP, .563 SLG

sammy -- 29 AB, 2 R, 7 H, 1 HR, 1 RBI, 1 BB, 5 K, .241 BAA, .313 OBP, .448 SLG

Tuesday, April 12, 2005

Sammy hits #575

Sammy hit his first HR tonight as an Oriole. The Cubs alltime HR leader went 2-4 with a HR and a Triple. Baltimore beat Tampa 7-6. So far this year Sammy is only hitting .241, he has one homerun, one rbi, and two runs scored.

In other Sammy news, La Pantera denied that he was planning on retire before the age of 40. This article says Sammy is 36. If he's 36...

Dusty's Holy Water

Today on my ride to work, I turned over to the flagship 720 and heard Spike O'Dell interviewing Dusty Baker. I listened for a while as Dusty discussed not playing Jerry Hairston. More excuses and blame the media for everything under the son followed. At that point the "morning zoo" host tried to lighten the situation. He asked Dusty about the holy water that Sharon Pannozzo had given him after she had it blessed by Pope John Paul. Dusty was shocked that O'Dell would ask this. He said "she told you that?"

O'Dell asked Baker what he was doing with the water. Dusty told O'Dell that he was using it on injured players. He said he used some on Todd Walker, somebody else, and LaTroy Hawkins wasn't hurt but he wanted some anyway.

I know that being involved with the Cubs causes desperation and hope for divine intervention. This sort of thing is really bizzarre. If the Todd Walker recovers in three weeks will that be a miracle that we can attribute to the late-Pontif?

It's just another day in the land of Dusty.

Question Mark? Mark Prior returns to the hill after little spring training and a rough spell in minor league action. I don't expect we'll see the Mark Prior we all want to see today.

Aramis Ramirez will sit out today due to the weather. WBBM is reporting he has a sore groin. Thus Neifi Perez, who again was scheduled to start at 2B will move to 3B opening the lineup for Jerry Hairston, Jr.

UPDATE 1:35 -- Speaking of water, the rain won today. Cubs and Pads were rained out. A twinbill between the two is scheduled at Wrigley on Wednesday.

Monday, April 11, 2005

Walker's out 4-6 weeks...

You would think that this would open up a spot for Jerry Hairston. Not on Monday at the Confines. The Cubs announced that Walker will go on the DL following the leg whip by Carlos Lee. Cub strategist and all around brilliant manager Dusty Baker inserted Neifi Perez in the lineup. Neifi is hitting second and playing 2B.

What did Hairston do wrong? Why is Dusty burying him on the bench? Hmmmmm...

Sunday Blog Cast...Good time had by all (Cubs Win!)

1060west Faithful,

Thank you to all of the fans that took the time to fill out our survey and enter for a chance to win tickets to the July 3rd Cubs vs. Washington Nationals game at Wrigley field.

The winner will be announced live April 30th at the Full Schilling, (winner need not be present to claim prize)

We will be live at the Full Schilling every Sunday with a blog cast that features live commentary, drink specials, the Burnitacplyse, the C-pat walk-a-thon and many fun and exciting raffles and giveaways!

We will see you at the Full Schilling!

Best Regards,


Waiting ‘til next year since 1908

Sunday, April 10, 2005

Cubs vs. Brewers Sunday Blogcast

Live From the Full Schilling

1:20 Start
Radio: WGN Radio - 720 AM

Victor Santos vs. Greg Maddux

1:11pm -- Maddux is 7-3 in his last 12 starts at Wrigley -- not that it means much in early April. Santos is 1-1 in three appearances at the Confines.

Patterson is leading off again today for the Cubs. Lee in the six hole.

Brady Clark will lead if off for the Brewers, followed by Spivey and Overbay.

1:18 -- Lee signed an autograph for a horrid brunette. Yikes.

1:20 -- Maddux is ready to let it go. Clark hitting .143 in the early going.

1:21 -- Maddux snares a liner, putting in for that Gold Glove again.

1:24 and the Cubs are behind as Spivey put a mistake into the left field basket. *sigh*...

1:25 -- Ex-Sox Carlos Lee takes the third looking to end it. 1-0 Brew-has.

1:29 -- Santos is wild early, but C-Pat is behind 2-2; what are the odds he fans?

1:29 -- Patterson manages to see 8 pitches, but tapped back to the mound. At least not a K. Maybe a tenth of a walk for the Walk-A-thon.

1:31 -- Walker takes a walk. Hit and run saves Nomar from the double play, and A-Ram puts it in the gap to drive him home. 1-1 tied.

1:36 -- Burnitz popped up to end it. Sight seen: a scalper bust right outside our window at the Full Shilling. The scapler comapnies get off scot-free, and Joe Independent gets nailed. Capitalist Conspiracy! :)

1:40 -- Jenkins singles, and so does ex-Cub Damian Miller. It's taking nine of Chicago's finest to confine one guy with some tickets. Taxes at work. Another squad just pulled up.

1:41 -- Forget the Gold Glove -- Maddux throwing error kills a possible double play and they're loaded. Trying to get an interview with the arrestees.

1:44 -- Bill Hall works Maddux to 2-2, but 6-4-3 scores a run. 2-1 Brewers as we build the picket fences.

1:45 -- In other news, Smoltz fans 15 through 7. Recovering from his terrible first start. 6-3 ends the top of the second. Maddux looks very hittable today -- a good match for Santos.

1:50 -- Lee grounds out. The aggrieved ticket scalpers, our crack interview team discovered, are innocent of anything and are not a particularly good interview. Surpising.

1:54 -- Hollandsworth walks, and the Cubs are being uncharacteristically patient -- but Barrett hits into the twin killing to end it. Still 2-1 Milwaukee.

1:59 -- Spivey singles -- he's 9 for 22 in April -- but gets nailed by a perfect throw from Barrett down to second.

2:01 -- Good thing, too, because Overbay plants a fastball in the right field bleachers. 3-1 Brewers at the end of the inning.

2:07 -- C-Pat gets to 2-2 and goes swinging. Again.

2:09 -- Nice to see the adverts behind the plate -- out of the 19th century. Grounder to first by Walker end the third.

2:14 -- Maddux issues a five-pitch walk to stikeout-prone Jenkins. I doubt that's a setup for later this year. But 5-4-3 helps out.

2:17 -- Branyan singles -- a rarity -- and Maddux hasn't strengthened at all. More early struggles. Remember last April's 5.65 ERA? Infield hit for Hall and its first and second with 2 down.

2:21 -- Grounder to Nomar ends it, but a long inning for Maddux. 63 pitches through four. Still 3-1 Sudstown.

2:24 -- Nomar goes after a ball in the dirt for strike three. Nomar's 5th K in six games -- a extraordinary pace for one of the harder Ks in baseball. A-Ram shoots one past first for a double, though, and the Cubs are in business.

2:29 -- Burnitz singles and its 3-2. He's 6-for-24 early. Time to buy your Tribco-authorized "Believe" ripoff bracelet.

2:34 -- Lee takes another very professional walk -- I know Ramirez is the favorite son, but Lee has the best plate approach on this team. First and second and one out. But it ends without more.

2:41 -- Two singles open the fifth frame, and Maddux is in trouble again. Nine hits through four plus. Spivey is 3-3.

2:43 -- Nearly a 3-6-1 double play -- Maddux argues and replay shows that its a blown call. No help, though, and its first and third with one away.

2:44 -- Sac fly scores one, and the call comes home to roost. 4-2 Brewers, and that's how it ends. Tiger leads the Masters at 13 under.

2:50 -- Maddux lifted for Hairston. The sorrowful line: 5 IP, 9 H, 4 R, 3 ER, 1 BB and 1 K over 75 pitches. He never had it today.

2:52 and OH MY GOD! The Corey Patterson Walk-A-Thon continues!! He stands proudly (confusedly?) at first after five pitches. Santos is starting to lose it a bit after 80+ pitches, and hits Walker. First, second, two away and Ramirez at the plate.

2:58 -- A wild pitch, and A-Ram goes 3-1. Relief up. Generous call on strike 2. Ball four, however, is grounded to second to end the threat. Still 4-2 Milwaukee.

3:02 -- Wellemeyer is on, so cross your fingers.

3:02 and thirty seconds -- Wellemeyer gives up a tater to Miller -- his first in over 100 at-bats. We've said it before: the Cubs need bullpen help.

3:04 -- Branyan singles again -- weird -- and Wellemeyer is typically ineffective. Wild high. In the dirt. The kid isn't a major league pitcher at this point.

3:08 -- Wes Helms pinch-hits into a 6-4-3 to end it. Santos final line: 5 IP, 3 H, 4 BB, 2 ER and 2 K.

3:13 -- 1060west anchor MCav is being proved right as Burnitz drives one to the rightfield gap off the new Brewer tosser Phelps. Lee singles and Burnitz holds at third. Setting up shop with nobody out.

3:14 -- Hollandsworth singles to drive in Burnie and Phelps leaves without recording an out. The infinite ERA looms. This pitching change brought to to by the round CornCobDress bought for everyone in the bar to celebrate Corey's walk.

3:19 -- Old Phillies closer Ricky Bottalico on for the Brewers. He summarily hits Barrett to load 'em.

3:22 -- Neifi hits for Wellemeyer (thank god) and hits a slow roller to second; only play to first and a run scores to make it 5-4 Brewers. Still second and third with one away, Patterson up.

3:25 -- Infield hit for C-Pat and Hollandsworth scores to tie it. Walker fouls off a few, but hits into a 1-4-3 (off Bottalico's foot) double play to end it. We're tied at fives at the end of six.

3:33 -- Baker is tossing stuff around the dugout. Brenly speculates that Patterson missed a few steal signs out on the bases. Seriously -- would you be surprised? Corey doesn't have the attention span to look at more than six pitches. Why would he look at the third-base coach for ten straight seconds?

3:39 -- Wuertz on. Brady Clark singles but gets caught stealing. Still fives. Cheese from Old School sings the seventh. Can this thing just mercifully die? Harry has been in the ground for years now. It isn't cute anymore; it's an abuse of tonality. Bonnie Hunt sang yesterday. Who is she?

3:45 -- Bill Hall makes a great play in the hole on Aramis. It's easy to see why they're high on him. If he hits at all, he'll be in the majors for a long time.

3:50 -- Wuertz still and he blows it by El Caballo before being lifted. 1.1 IP, 1 H, 1 K. Another outing to support CornCob's argument for putting Wuertz at the end of the bullpen. Solid.

3:53 -- Remlinger on. Miller singles, but he looks good and Branyan won't single three times in any game.

3:57 -- Called strike three. Wise out of the bullpen for Milwaukee.

4:03 -- Wise looks tough with a Lee groundout and Hollndsworth fanning and on eye-high fastball. Smoltz finished with 15 Ks, but gave up 8 hits as Atlanta lost 6-1.

4:04 -- Hall again comes up on a ball in the hole to throw out Barrett. Very tough on defense. Career OBP of .280 keeps him from playing every day.

4:10 -- Nomar charges a ball of his own to keep from being totally shown up by Hall. Nice play. Then Nomar ends the inning on a routine grounder.

4:14 -- The much-heralded Jason DuBois pinch-hits for the pitcher, shows an eye in getting to 2-1, but gets gets fooled for strike 2. Works 3-2, pulls a strike foul but takes strike 3 on a perfect fastball, inside on the black. Great pitch from Jorge de la Rosa, but a nice at-bat for the kid.

4:17 -- Patterson fans again for the second out in the ninth. Still 5-5. Clubhouse representative Wodd Talker at the plate.

4:18 -- Walker grounds out and we get some free baseball.

4:22 -- Rusch on in the 10th to face three-hit Spivey. Rusch bobbles it, Spivey safe at first. There's trouble here, Cherie...

4:26 -- Carlos Lee drives a 3-1 pitch into left, and its first and second with one away for the Brewers. Jenkins up.

4:28 -- He is so Brett Favre's secret brother. Fielder's choice ends in a collision between Walker and Lee at second -- an illegal legwhip, in fact. But there's no call, and no harm done.

4:30 -- Rusch fans Miller and its the Cubs half of the 10th. Wrigleyville Dogs is starting to look pretty good after a half dozen Miller Lites. (Product placement at no extra fee.)

4:31 -- Walker limps off after the incident, looks like a ankle. Hairston has already been used. Macias will have to man second.

4:35 -- Nomar swings at a ball outside in the dirt for strike three for the second time. He looks very bad -- for him, anyway. 0-4 today makes 4-27 so far.

4:36 -- Ramirez doubles -- he gave the Sammy hop! Missed by two feet, and its second base with one out.

4:38 -- De la Rosa breaks off a huge curve to get Burnitz looking. Walking Lee to face Hollandsworth -- good decision by Milwaukee manager Ned Yost, one of the more underrated managers in the game.

4:42 -- 3-2 with two down, and Hollandsworth draws a walk. Fine outing for de la Rosa -- and they'll leave him in to face Barrett.

4:45 -- Barrett sees four balls and goes to 1-2 anyway. Drives one foul. Gets caught looking. On to the 11th.

4:50 -- Rusch fans Branyan -- over 500 Ks in some career 1200 ABs -- but Hall draws a rare walk.

4:52 -- Chris Magruder pinch-hits for de la Rosa and singles Hall to third with one away. Uh-oh.

4:55 -- Bartosh is warming, but it may be too late for Dusty's move. Brady Clark pops up, and the righty Spivey is up. But Dusty leaves Rusch in.

4:58 -- Rusch comes up big and Ks Spivey looking. To the bottom of the 11th.

5:02 -- Derrick Turnbow on for the Brew-has. Rusch hits for himself. I can't explain that, with Hawkins and Leicester in the pen. He pops up.

5:03 -- C-Pat demonstrates why he should hit every ball on the ground by getting another infield hit. He really is Willie Mays Hayes.

5:06 -- Patterson should probably have stolen second by now, but remains on first as Macias gets to 2-2. A start-and-stop looked like an aborted steal attempt. A hit-and-run attempt ended in a foul ball. Grounder to Branyan moves Patterson into scoring position.

5:10 -- Nomar taps a ball back to Turnbow. TO THE 12TH!

5:12 -- The Cubs have nine hits and six walks; the Brewers 15 hits and 2 walks. MCav is on his second scotch despite the Vicodin he took to relieve the pain of oral surgery. An ambulance awaits.

5:14 -- Overbay leads off with one of his ubiquitous doubles. El Caballo to the plate and they walk him intentionally.

5:18 -- Fly ball to Burnitz, but Overbay holds at second. Maybe a minor break for the Cubs. Two away. Branyan grounds out to Lee to end it.

You know, I didn't count on 13 innings when I started this thing. Let's score one and free me to to drink beer uninhibited.

5:23 -- Bill Hall again charges a deflected ball to get A-Ram. A joy to watch him work.

5:25 -- Burnitz stat of the day: has his 7th career two-homer game on June 23, 1999.

5:26 -- The Burnitzalypse drives it off the wall over Clark's head -- a triple! One out and we're looking golden! Derrek Lee approaches.

5:27 -- Lee walked intentionally to get to the lefty Hollandsworth. The 1996 rookie of the year, hitting .291 with 12 homers.

5:29 -- HOLLANDSWORTH KNOCKS IT THROUGH A DRAWN-IN INFIELD, AND I AM FREED! The massive respect for Lee forces a righty-lefty matchup for the Cubs, and it works.

Brewers 5 runs, 16 hits, 0 errors
Cubs 6 runs, 11 hits, 2 errors

WP -- Rusch (2-0) LP -- Turnbow (0-1)