Entries Tagged as 'Cubs'

Cubs: Art imitating life

The Onion Sports Network  does it again with their article: 

‘Chicago Cubs Can’t Believe They’re Doing This Again’.

"Why the hell are we still putting ourselves through this?" left fielder Alfonso Soriano said during an Opening Day press conference, adding that no one on the team has ever been happy at the end of the season, during the season, or at the beginning of the season, which, according to Soriano, is when everyone actually feels the most hopeless. "We just have to admit to ourselves that the Chicago Cubs should not be playing in a professional baseball league. Can we all just do that and put an end to this misery?" 

It would be funny if it weren’t so true.  Fortunately, this is next year.

Cubs have spring fever, take frustrations out on each other

I thought we were told there would be no more of this.  

USA Today:  Fight breaks out in Cubs dugout during spring game

It seems Carlos Silva was the one who couldn’t keep his cool.

The Cubs said that Silva was "not in the right frame of mind to talk" after the game.

To be honest, I pretty much expected to read about Carlos Zambrano, not Silva, when I clicked the headline link.  I’m not sure whether it’s a good or bad thing that I was wrong.

Keep it cool, Silva


While White Sox manager is embroiled in a sniping war with former Sox reliever Bobby Jenks, it looks like Mike Quade is cementing himself as the Great Communicator in the Cubs organization.

From USA Today:

Mike Quade already had the attention of his Chicago Cubs players during his first spring training as a big league manager, between his hands-on approach during drills, added attention to fundamentals, and an infectious energy he brings to work.

But not even the most alert player saw this coming Friday: lineups posted for the first three exhibition games, two days in advance of the spring opener, complete with each starter’s backup for the day listed in parentheses.

I’m not sure if it’s an issue of communication or just plain being organized.  Compared to the former Cubs czar, the players think he’s quite on top of things. 

Yet, communication, efficiency and even being a ‘players manager’ may not translate to wins.  We won’t know that come April.  It’s a good start, though.

Jenkins turn to get licked

Speaking of Canadian baseball players, former Cub pitcher Ferguson Jenkins can add one more to his list of accomplishments. 

Fergie’s face will adorn a postage stamp. This will be part of an effort to commemorate Black History Month this upcoming February.  Along with his portrait, there will be a backdrop of Jenkins throwing off the mound in a Cubs uniform.  Jenkins was in Ottawa on Monday to help Canada Post to celebrate the event (and apparently his birthday as well).

Ferguson Jenkins is the only Canadian-born player in the Baseball Hall of Fame.

Wood on coming back to the Cubs: “nothing is impossible”

Kerry Wood addressed the issue of the possibility of being a Cub again.   "Nothing is impossible. We’ll see how things play out.", he said according to the Trib.

I liked Kerry Wood.  I still do.  Talent and upside aside, he represents Cub mentality even two years after he left the team.  Most Cub fans I know think of him fondly.  It’s reported that even Jim Hendry has a soft spot for Wood. 

Bring him back, I say.

Joe P’s tribute to Santo

If you haven’t seen it, check out Joe Posnanski’s tribute to Ron Santo on SI.com

For many years, Ron Santo’s identity was wrapped up in being left outside. He was, simply, the greatest player not in the Baseball Hall of Fame. This is not to say that he was a better baseball player than Dick Allen or Minnie Minoso or Bert Blyleven or Ken Boyer or numerous other terrific players who have not yet been elected and inducted. That is a matter opinion. This is not to say he was a more egregious oversight than any of these players or others. That, too, is opinion.

Very well played. 

PS here is the AP report on Ronnie’s funeral and wake.

Cubs reacting to Wrigley safety measures by Big Ten

A last minute decision based on safety has turned the Illinois-Northwestern football game at Wrigley Field tomorrow into somewhat of a joke.  To put it simply, there will be one end zone and whenever there is a switch in possession, the teams will turn to the opposite direction so the offense will face that said end zone. 

The end zone is on the west side of the football field now desecrating Wrigley Field.

Maybe this Wrigley Field idea wasn’t such a great idea after all.

Wrigley Field was modified to Big Ten standards.  Earlier, Big Ten officials did a walk-through at Wrigley and didn’t raise a fuss.  Both of those points were raised in a rather terse even passive-aggressive statement issued by the Chicago Cubs organization after the Big Ten decided to make their changes:

“This game would not have been scheduled if it did not pass the strict and meticulous standards of everyone involved, a process that began more than a year ago. All are in agreement Wrigley Field is a safe venue to host a football game. Other baseball parks, including tomorrow night’s game in Yankee Stadium, feature similar football field-to-venue grid dimensions and rule changes are not considered for football games played in other baseball parks.

“We have reached out to the Big Ten to further discuss the playing field. While we are surprised by this morning’s last-minute statement, all agree that tomorrow will be an historic event and a wonderful experience for the fans, the schools and the student-athletes.”

Well, it doesn’t bode well to upset your hosts.  Play Ball! 

oh and Go Illini!

Caray statue damaged at Wrigley

Maybe it’s an omen or something.  Like telling us football should not be played at Wrigley Field.

The statue of Harry Caray at Wrigley was damaged by a vehicle that was used to prepare for the Illini-Northwestern football game next weekend.

They have already made preparations to repair the statue. 

Cubs outsourcing their publications and graphics dept

After taking care of their publishing needs in-house for over 100 years, the Cubs will now be outsourcing these needs to a Cincinnati firm, EMI Network.

So says Bleed Cubbie Blue:

Now, the Cubs are outsourcing their publications to EMI Network, a Cincinnati-based company that does publications for a number of other pro sports teams and various clients including Elmhurst College, Eastern Illinois University, PNC Bank, various large law firms and US News & World Report.

Under this new arrangement, EMI Network will operate and manage all aspects of the Cubs’ Publications & Creative Services Department, including publication of Vine Line magazine as well as photography, video and graphic services.

For a cynical guy, I can be pretty idealistic too.  So for some reason this really bothers.  I guess I need to let it roll over me.  But maybe I can’t let go of the fact that the Cubs Vineline or the programs that us Cubs fans will buy at the Wrigley Field will be designed and published in the same city whose team has a former Cub manager. 

Counterpoint: Was Quade really the right move for the Cubs??

DonS, a long suffering fan of TBZ, emailed me a response to my article in favor of the Cubs hiring Mike Quade.  He makes some good points against the hiring I’m posting it tonight. -tbz

I said the following the day Lou left: “Lou leaving in mid-season” is the worst thing that could happen to the Cubs. What if the “Interim Flunky” hits a hot streak? Now you’re stuck with him.

Is that exactly what happened?. Quade went 24-13 (that projects out to 105 wins in a full season). So now the Cubs think this guy is the answer.

The guys on WSCR think this is a great move. But keep in mind: That’s a bunch of White Sox fans who hope the Cubs lose every game. Some endorsement, huh?

Nothing against Quade. But the guy spent 17 years in the Cub minor league system. In that time, I never heard him rumored to be a managerial candidate at the major league level, for the Cubs or for anybody else. Now, based on 37 games, he gets the job?

One More Thing: I said on the day of the hire, “If I am Ryno, I am outta there.” I heard yesterday that Ryno has left the Cub Organ-I-Zation. It sounds like he told Jim Hendry where he could stick his “Go back to Iowa” idea.

Seems obvious to me that the Cubs NEVER intend to hire him to be the manager. It’s not like they bypassed him for a proven manager, like Girardi or Torre. They had told him, “Go to the minor leagues, ride busses, work hard, … ” Something negative to Ryno must have happened in those four years.

Or maybe Jim Hendry is every bit the stumbling dunderhead that his critics think he is.

As the late Mike Royko often said, “I may be wrong, but I doubt it.”