Tuesday, October 31, 2006

It runs in the extended family!!

We have recently obtained photographic evidence of the Eckstein's commitment to hustle. Here, you may view the she-Eck (left, actual height: 5'2") as she poses with a much less scrappy, hustling actress. (And for the record, I am not jealous. I prefer my women taller. And nakeder.) Thanks to that same source, we have also been graced with this photo of Eck dying his hair.

From the Won't Be Fooled Again department: In consecutive games, the Bears have followed the largest comeback without scoring an offensive touchdown with the third-largest halftime lead in NFL history. I'm reminded of the prototypical fat girl who goes bulimic for a year before her tenth high school reunion. (Also, for the record - I'm a die-hard Bear fan. I love the Bears, and have through the good and bad years. However, I'm not sold on them this year just yet, and I'll tell you why - WHO THE FUCK HAVE THEY BEATEN? Three lousy division rivals [one barely], three teams that probably wouldn't be able to get into the playoffs even if they had tickets, and the Seahawks minus their best player. To paraphrase: They might not be exactly who we think they are.)

The NBA starts tomorrow night. This hereby fulfills my yearly Bulls blogging quota.

Saturday, October 28, 2006

Carrie At Bat.

Remember those fifty page books you read as a child about Babe Ruth, Ty Cobb, and Mickey Mantle that made you wish you were forty years older so that you might have been alive for the hey-day of gritty in-your-face baseball when all the stars were golden and signed autographs for everybody in the house and nobody cheated? Those books still exist, only today they write about Sammy Sosa, Mark Grace, Mark McGwire, and Barry Bonds, but never David Eckstein.

Guess who writes them!

Guess guess guess guess guess guess.
Guess guess guess guess guess guess.

That is correct! Carrie Muskat!

Todd Helton Ejected Helmet July 21 Arizona

Somebody is very interested in Todd Helton's ejection from a game against the Diamondbacks on July 21. So interested that this person has accidentally found himself viewing this blog about ten times or so over the last month. Well.

Here is what happened:

Helton, who went 0-for-4, earned a quick ejection after he requested that plate umpire James Hoye defer to the third-base umpire on a called third strike in the seventh. Helton felt he had checked his swing.

"I wasn't cordial or anything, but I've said a lot worse and not gotten run," said Helton, whose only previous ejection occurred during a bench-clearing fight between the Rockies and the Reds in 2000. "I didn't think I was in any danger of getting myself run.

"I thought I'd at least earned enough to say my say ... but it happens." (article)

USA Today mentioned it here. ESPN, here. The New York Times, too.

Story of the year.

Unfortunately, MLB.com did not include Helton's ejection in their video highlights of the game. However, here is a YouTube video of Helton looking to become the next Crime Dog, sponsoring a product called the I-ON Eye Trainer. Apparently it makes the air thinner and allows you to hit more home runs that way. The program was invented by Dr. Gregory S. Moore, former optometrist for the Chicago Cubs, which makes this relevant. Treating the children as if they were playing slumping major leaguers in a comedy about the Cleveland Indians, the doctor basically blindfolds the children, which brings out the children's latent mito-chlorians so that they might hit the ball not by using their eyes and aiming, but with the Force.

I hope this has helped you, Curious About Todd Helton. Come back soon.

-Pandrew

p.s. - Puljols! Puljols! Puljols! Puljols!

It never happened.

In many European countries, denying the Holocaust is a crime. A historical event, documented by many independent sources...how could you deny it?

I wondered that, until today. The 2006 World Series? Never happened. No such thing. I never thought I'd be longing for the 1994 strike to happen all over again, but here I am, shocked as a team I hate wins the title for the second year in a row. Seriously, why don't we just give next year's title to the Yankees, just so I can hang myself by my belt. (INXS fans, don't worry, I'll keep my pants zipped.)

And David Eckstein as MVP? Yeah, I'll buy that. He totally deserves MVP honors, for having the secret magical powers that caused Curtis Granderson to fall down on a routine flyout and every Tiger pitcher to not be able to throw to any base besides home (and sometimes, not even there). David Eckstein is a piece of shit, who by hustling and trying hard all the time, basically makes the rest of us look bad. Fuck him. If you don't think I've said enough on the subject, check out Fire Joe Morgan, who summed it up perfectly, if not quite succinctly.

Ah, well, let's look on the bright side. 2015 isn't so far off.

Friday, October 27, 2006

He's Done It Again!

That is what Fox's announcers had to say after David Eckstein reached on Brandon Inge's throwing error, on which Yadier Molina scored. David Eckstein: occasionally around when good things happen to his team.

1. For whomever was interested, Henry Rowengartner's jersey number was 1, although when he played for the Pirates in little league it may have been 17.

2. The Cubs have announced a few additions to the team: Alan Trammel, who looks to be part of another 119-loss team, and these guys. A guy named Lester Strode, who tells us how he lost his wife; Sinatro, another Piniella lackey; and Quade, who just recently returned from Mars and is the addition about whom I am most excited.

3. E-Patt!

2B Eric Patterson -- Patterson, currently riding an eight-game hitting streak, continues to pound the ball. From Oct. 14 through Oct. 25, the 23-year-old infielder went 16-for-34 with six RBIs and 11 runs scored. He recorded his best day on Oct. 24, going 3-for-6 with an RBI double, a two-run single and four runs scored. Patterson is batting .347 (17-for-49) in 12 games.

Cesar, Ronnie: Tengan cuidado, o vayan a perder sus trabajos.

4. Once we finish our season review, we can look toward the future, specifically 2015, when the Cubs will beat Miami in the World Series. Funny that Limbaugh would accuse Fox of acting to exaggerate the effects of Parkinson's disease but forgot that it will only be nine years before Fox gets into illegal gambling.

5. Lastly, my attempt at a World Series political advertisment, in the spirit of the approaching midterm elections:

Little Cardinals Fan is a bastard. She doesn't even know who her father is. What else don't we know about Cardinals Fans?

The St. Louis Cardinals: bad for education, bad for baseball, bad for America.

Thursday, October 26, 2006

Oh, and one more thing...

Dear internet and television sports coverage:

Yes, we know Curtis Granderson is 0-for-whatever in the playoffs.

Yes, we know that Pudge Rodriguez is too.

But, if Curtis (because I really, really like Curtis) goes 0-for-29 in the Series, and then knocks in the winning run in Game Seven...

He's World Series Hero© Curtis Granderson. Thank you, good night, and shut the hell up.

Game Three, You Were Frustrating.

So, first off, this would not be a post of substance unless I deigned to thank our readers, loyal and otherwise:

- Otherwise: If you were to search Google for "Todd Hundley", we are now on the first page...number ten, and climbing. Thank you all for hitting our page and making us relevant!

- Loyal: It's time to thank my good friend Lauren, who recently sponsored us on Todd's page on Baseball-Reference.com. I wrote the subtext (epitaph?) myself while driving home from work, and I daresay you can all relate. And, as for Lauren, she's a Cardinal fan, but we love her anyways.

- Otherwise, again: I'd like to thank the dude from Saudi Arabia whose search alerted us to the fact that we are the ONLY website that shows up on Google if you search for "gackass number two". I would also like to thank Sarah Poontong, who searches for herself evey couple of days or so - Sarah, if you include your work address, I swear on my life that I will (eventually) send you a basket of narcissuses. (I'm secure in my manhood, and I am okay with the fact that I know flowers. I know jewelry even better, but I am not willing to make that commitment just yet, cause that shit gets expensive.)

Game Three: Look, we all want the Tigers to win. ("We all" not including those misguided souls who think that the Cardinals winning the Series would be a good thing.) But the fact is, Le Tigre was not hitting Carpenter that night. That's okay. The American League All-Star team wouldn't have hit Capenter. He had his stuff working, and he's one of those pitchers that is nigh unto unhittable when he's on. (See: Wood, Kerry [uninjured] or Prior, Mark [before discovering own vagina].) The fact is, Game Four will be different, because Bonderman is fucking money. (Side note: I ran into a former coworker today, and asked him to place a bet - Tigers, Florida Panthers, and Anaheim Ducks. He came back with a bet on Cardinals, Panthers, and Ducks. Thank the higher powers that I didn't actually have to root for the Cards, and that I made bank.) Game Four prediction: Le Tigre 4, Cardi-nads 2. Bondermania shall reign. More to follow, after I am proven right.

But first, one last thing: Pandrew and I are total political opposites. Dude's my best friend, but we agree on basically nothing when it comes to politics - he's a serious lefty, I'm what I like to call a "state conservative" - state, as in "separation of church and". we even discusse this - how we didn't want this to turn into a political blog instead of a baseball one. However - I've been flying the "Buy American!" flag for years, ever since I bought my first car (I have owned two: an Olds Cutlass and a Chevy Caprice - I love my GM). That being said...Fox airing a Spanish commercial for Chevy during the World Series? Fuck Buy American - throw it out the window. Next time I buy a car, it'll be without regard to country of origin, since Chevrolet has singlehandely shown me that they don't care about the American worker. Up yours, Chevy - the only reason I'm not already on the market is that Japan hasn't shown that they can accomodate a 6'3 driver who likes to stretch out. (That, and my embarassing credit rating...and the fact that I don't get 25+ insurance for a while...and the fact that I don't have a down payment ready...just up yours, Chevy!)

Monday, October 23, 2006

World Series Things I Have Observed

I'd like to begin this entry with a shoutout to Pedro Martinez, and the entire THS staff sends our condolences on the tragic passing of his midget. Pedro, keep your head up...I hear Kid Rock's got a support group for stuff like this. Besides, Pam Anderson-Lee-Rock's tits are bigger than Nelson was..."It's exactly the kind of joke he would have loved!"

Now, on to baseball-related content...

- Game 1: =(. Not much to say, it wasn't a good game and it didn't have a happy result.

- The rotation: The Tigers had a week to rest and reset their rotation...instead, they just picked an arbitrary point in the rotation and kept going from there...a point which resulted in their most consistent starter throughout the season (Bonderman) only pitching one game, and weak link Nate Robertson being pointed to Game 7. I can't be the only one who thinks this is a fairly dumb idea.

- Game 2: You're Jim Leyland. You've got the tying run at the plate after your shaky closer (at least in terms of internal numbers) put two guys on. You have a dangerous situational lefty in Jamie Walker available in your bullpen. Is there ANY REASON you pitch to Edmonds?

More on this later, when I'm not on the run.

Saturday, October 21, 2006

World Series Preview, I Am Drunk Edition

So, it has been brought to my attention that my dad reads this blog...I talked to him about it, and he said that he liked it, but I could stand to tone down the language some. Now, I don't react well to criticism...so I am going to replace all "four-letter words" in this post with a four-letter word which I find even more offensive.

Let's go to the head-to-head.

C: Ivan Rodriguez v. Yadier Molina.

Yadier, you hit one lovin' home run that means anything in your career, and you tink you can match up with a Hall Of Famer? You lose, cracka.

Edge: Le Tigre.

1B: Sean Casey v. Albert Pujols.

I hate the Cardinals as much as anyone, but the only thing stopping me from saying you'd have to be lovin' retarded to think this is even close is that I have a good friend (wink, wink) who works with the retarded. So, you'd have to be seriously developmentally disabled to think that this is even close.

Edge: Cards.

2B: Placido Polanco v. Ronnie Belliard.

The best contact hitter in baseball today not named Ichiro against some douchebag whose only positive attributes are cornrows and being approximately five feet tall. Gee, this is a tricky one.

Edge: Le Tigre.

3B: Brandon Inge vs. Scott Rolen.

I really hate Scott Rolen.

Edge: Le Tigre.

SS: some dude vs. David Eckstein.

Eckstein, what the love? You hustle, you do all the things that Joe Morgan loves, you basically...make all the rest of us look really motherlovin' bad. I'm kind of disappointed that you haven't been hit by a trolley or some shit yet. They still make trolleys, right? Maybe? As tourist attractions? Love it, I'm taking some dude.

Edge: some dude (Le Tigre).

LF: Chris Duncan/Preston Wilson vs. Marcus Thames/Craig Monroe

Seriously, both of you platoons realize that nobody fucks you, right? (Apparently, word replacement takes on a transitive property when I drink.) This is the worst matchup in the history of baseball - not because the players are bad, but out of the four guys mentioned, who gives a love?

Edge: who cares

CF: Curtis Granderson vs. Jim Edmonds

Edmonds holds every conceivable edge in this competition. He's got the experience, the will to win, the veteran know-how and savvy...wait, this is a center field competition and not a whining like a little bitch competition? Never mind.

Edge: GRANDERSON

RF: Magglio Ordonez vs. Juan Encarnacion

Magglio is an ex-White Sox, "Encarnacion" literally translates to "a man in jail." Either way, it's a bitch.

Edge: Adebisi

P: Chris Carpenter and the Seven Dwarves vs. Jeremy Bonderman and a bunch of dudes who throw 100+ mph.

Edge: Tigers, writeup unnecessary

Intangibles: All I have to say here is that you don't see Dog the Bounty Hunter naming his kid "LaRussa".

Edge: Tigers

Final pick: Tigers in five.

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Tribune Co. Are A Bunch Of Necrophiliacs.

They're screwing us even after we're dead.

Starting next season, fans of the
New York Yankees, Boston Red Sox, Detroit Tigers, Philadelphia Phillies, Chicago Cubs and Los Angeles Dodgers will be able to have their ashes put in an urn or be lowered six feet under in a casket emblazoned with their team colors and insignia.

I'm sure this was McDonough's idea.

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

Season Review: Part 1.

Juan Pierre

Pandrew: Okay Juan Pierre. Best defensive season of his career.
Pandrew: No errors, zone rating of .911 (whatever that means!)
A-Train: That's not even a real stat.
Pandrew: Fine. Fielding Percentage of 1.000
A-Train: Walks declined for the fourth straight year. I know you're going to get on that, so I’ll just get it out of the way.
Pandrew: His July-August-September was almost unbelievably good: .332 AVG, 28 XBH, 27 RBI, 33 SB (though 12 CS)
A-Train: And yet you still want to not re-sign him.
Pandrew: April-May: .239 AVG, I don't need to break down the OBP
A-Train: I'm guessing somewhere in the vicinity of .239.
Pandrew: Somewhere
Pandrew: ODDLY
A-Train: Here's my thing: Outside of Soriano, who's your better idea?
Pandrew: June: .283/.352
A-Train: So he hit well once the weather heated up. I seem to remember somebody predicting that would happen.
Pandrew: I have no idea what manager you are talking about.
A-Train: It seems to have slipped my mind as well.
Pandrew: He's a singles hitter who steals bases.
A-Train: Yeah. but that makes him effectively a doubles hitter.
A-Train: Today at the mall, I saw a Brad Wilkerson t-shirt.
Pandrew: What did it say?
Pandrew: AVG/OBP/SLG!
A-Train: It was one of the pseudo-jerseys. For people who don't want to buy real jerseys.
Pandrew: I say we go with Happy Pie.
A-Train: Oddly enough, it was a Washington jersey.
Pandrew: Oh, I thought you meant T-Shirt.
A-Train: It was a t-shirt. You know what a t-shirt jersey is.
Pandrew: Oh...yes.
Pandrew: I thought you meant like in the mid-90s when Frank Thomas had T-Shirts of him hitting the baseball and a side view of his head.
Pandrew: With his first name in cursive and his last name in BIG BLOCK LETTERS
A-Train: Those are so great
Pandrew: Anyway Pie did this at Iowa this year: .283/.341/.451 with 56 XBH and 17 SB.
A-Train: That's nice.
Pandrew: AND he's only 21.
A-Train: .311/.372/.579 at Iowa. 25 2B, 26 HR.
A-Train: That's what Julio Zuleta did at Iowa in 2000 before we got the bright idea to make him Mark Grace's successor.
A-Train: JUAN PIERRE IS WHO WE THOUGHT HE IS! HE'S WHO WE THOUGHT HE IS!!! AND IF YOU WANT TO GO AHEAD AND CROWN HIM, GO AHEAD AND CROWN HIS !!!
Pandrew: And if he asks for 8-9 million, it's too much for a singles hitter.
Pandrew: During a rebuilding year.
A-Train: Who is effectively a doubles hitter? Who knows.
A-Train: Either way, I think we're getting Soriano.
Pandrew: He's not effectively a doubles hitter
Pandrew: He hits like 174 singles
Pandrew: and turns 56 of those into doubles
Pandrew: but 20 of them into outs
Pandrew: Also
A-Train: I will not back down - a speed guy is important.
Pandrew: This is important
A-Train: That he is a speed guy? Yes.
Pandrew: Zuleta fits right into my minor leaguers getting power once they turn 25 and are still at AAA
Pandrew: theory
Pandrew: Pie is 21
A-Train: Pie can enjoy another year in AAA, then. he's got plenty of time.
Pandrew: So we're only going to sign Pierre for one season
Pandrew: Because why sign him at all, then?
A-Train: I don't think you can figure in a Felix Pie until he proves that he can hit, even in the short term, on the major league level.
A-Train: Okay, let's wrap up Pierre. My choice for CF next year: Soriano. Yours: Pie. Grade?
A-Train: I vote for B. He's a solid ballplayer.
Pandrew: I vote B. He was solid.
A-Train: Man law. On to...Michael Barrett.

Michael Barrett

Pandrew: I often started him over Victor Martinez.
Pandrew: The best non-Brian McCann catcher in the NL.
A-Train: I would just be happy if we'd consistently start him over Geovany Soto.
A-Train: Yes. agreed.
A-Train: Actually, not agreed. He's better than Brian McCann.
Pandrew: Another foul tip and he'll no longer need to use a cup.
A-Train: He'll be eligible for the WMLB.
A-Train: Wow. Lo Duca was the only NL catcher who qualified for the batting title.
Pandrew: Yes
Pandrew: McCann was better in every major offensive and defensive category
A-Train: Yeah. But still, I remain skeptical. I don't need a computer to tell me what players are good.
Pandrew: But you need a computer to talk about it.
Pandrew: One season is a small sample size
Pandrew: But we are only talking about one season.
A-Train: McCann really picked it up after the break, too. Okay. He's good. But Barrett is a sound second.
Pandrew: McCann was better than Barrett this year. Doesn't mean he'll be good next year (his minor league stats suggest a drop off but they too, are a small sample size, as he's only 22)
Pandrew: Back to Barrett
Pandrew: He wins best Cubs moment of the year
A-Train: Punching out A.J.? Yes.
Pandrew: Yes.
Pandrew: He only struck out 41 times in 375 AB
Pandrew: That's really good for a catcher with some pop.
A-Train: A very questionable level of pop-pop, though.
Pandrew: It's difficult to perform in the clutch if you don't have the balls to handle the pressure.
A-Train: People might not know it, but we enjoy Michael Barrett for reasons other than the fact that he got hit in the nuts.
A-Train: Seriously, he's awesome. A-?
Pandrew: I give him an A- because he can't throw out baserunners.
A-Train: Yes he can.
Pandrew: 10 %, then
Pandrew: my bad.
Pandrew: 19%
A-Train: 19% is not terrible.
Pandrew: Blanco: OLD, but also 42.9 %
Pandrew: And he caught for MADDUX
A-Train: Yeah. but Barrett is usually better than that.
Pandrew: Barrett's career is 23%
A-Train: Maddux is tricky, because he doesn't throw fast, but he rarely pitches out of the zone and has a compact windup.
A-Train: And 23% is not bad. It's average.
Pandrew: We aren't rating him on all of the other years of his career.
A-Train: Right. But as this relates to his future, I don't feel unconfident.
Pandrew: If he qualified, Barrett would have been second to last in the majors
Pandrew: Right in front of Martinez
A-Train: Ninth of ten. Because only nine guys qualified.
Pandrew: Wrong
Pandrew: 17 out of 18
A-Train: Apparently batting and fielding have different qualifier rates.
A-Train: They do! 1 game per two team games, so 81 games.
Pandrew: Haha, 1 GM per 2 team GM
A-Train: Then how did he not qualify?
Pandrew: ...I don't know.
Pandrew: But hey, there's Brian Schneider, the guy Montreal thought was better than Barrett. HAHA
A-Train: Hahahaha.
A-Train: A-. MOVING ON.

Derrek Lee

A-Train: This is not The Cubs Season In Review As Written By David Foster Wallace and Mark Z. Danielewski.
Pandrew: Genius.
A-Train: We should cover something that isn't so long, like Derrek Lee's season.
Pandrew: FUCK RAFAEL FURCAL.
A-Train: I know you want to give him an A. I do not.
Pandrew: I don't want to give him an A.
Pandrew: In the small sample size he had maybe a B-, especially coming after last year
A-Train: Well, then we're agreed.
A-Train: I thought we weren't evaluating past years?
Pandrew: We're not. but he set the bar
Pandrew: and was injured all of it.
Pandrew: Can't give him an incomplete, though.
Pandrew: Also, Derrek Lee did not play even a third of the games at first this year
A-Train: He's the first baseman, though
Pandrew: Well, that's like rating Kerry Wood instead of Sean Marshall for SP.
A-Train: No, because Lee will be the 1B next year.
Pandrew: I think we need to grade Mabry's .205 AVG as well, maybe after the pitchers.
A-Train: I'll save you the time: F.
A-Train: I think Derrek is good, as long as people realize that he's not going to have another 2005.
Pandrew: But he's going to be a near .300 guy with a lot of walks and 35-40 HR
A-Train: Exactly.
Pandrew: and as you know he will receive As for that.
Pandrew: Nobody but Pujols puts up triple crown numbers every year.
A-Train: If Steinbrenner picks up enough of A-Rod's contract to trade him to Oakland, certain A's might be receiving him.
Pandrew: The A's could do a lot worse than trading Eric Chavez for A Rod.
Pandrew: Chavez at his best is A Rod this year
A-Train: And the only thing Chavez points his ass at is ground balls.
Pandrew: Okay, Lee gets a B-. Hope his daughter gets better. Still hate Furcal.
A-Train: I'll drink to that. We can add her to our pray-for list, right under Michael Barrett's nuts. Hey, you like underage girls under your nuts, too! Next: Aramis Ramirez.

Aramis Ramirez

Pandrew: Best season of his career. It's a shame the Cubs were losing because he was mashing the hell out of the ball and nobody noticed.
Pandrew: 80 XBH
Pandrew: Career highs in HR, RBI, BB, 3B.
A-Train: Basically, I have nothing negative to say about Aramis.
Pandrew: He only sat out five games.
Pandrew: Baker missed more than that.
Pandrew: His midde name is NIN
A-Train: Anais Nin Ramirez?
Pandrew: It is confirmed.
Pandrew: They traded Matt Bruback and Jose Hernandez for Kenny Lofton and A-Ram
A-Train: The immortal Matt Bruback!
Pandrew: The Pirates didn't have enough RAM to process it.
A-Train: I love our trades with the Pirates. It almost makes our trades with the Marlins palatable.
Pandrew: Also, Aramis had 29 homers at A+ when he was 19.
A-Train: Proving that...he's just really fucking powerful.
-Train: Is there any way that getting rid of him and getting A-Rod is a halfway decent idea, on any level?
A-Train: I tend to vote for "no". and by "tend to", I mean "am fiercely committed that I will not".
Pandrew: If he then exercised his option and became a free agent
Pandrew: and signed with the Cubs immediately.
A-Train: How would that be a reason to trade him?
Pandrew: Because A-Rod could move back to SS
A-Train: We could not get A-Rod without giving up Ramirez.
Pandrew: and then you'd have an infield of D Lee, A Rod, A Ram, and...E Patt
Pandrew: Of course not.
A-Train: more like E-4 am i rite?
Pandrew: rotf!
Pandrew: Here is what I mean
Pandrew: Trade Aramis as soon as the season ends.
Pandrew: Then, as a Yankee
Pandrew: he uses his become a free agent option
Pandrew: and signs back with the Cubs.
Pandrew: I know it doesn't work. Don't trade Aramis.
A-Train: Then he hits Giambi over the head with a chair…
Pandrew: Also Barry Bonds LOL
A-Train: WE ARE ON THE INTERNET HELLO
A-Train: See? Just thinking about Aramis makes me happy.
Pandrew: Aramis plays on a differently level and our one dimensional grading system cannot adequately give him credit.
A-Train: I don't even care if you misinterpret that.
Pandrew: I'd say he made me happy too but you'd probably edit out what you said and then make fun of me.
A-Train: It's okay. It's an innocent kind of happy!Pandrew: Aramis gets A to the Nth degree.
A-Train: Man law.

This concludes part one of the season review. Tune in again in a couple of hours, when we present: Part Two, the bottom half of the lineup.

Chicago Sports In General, Not Unlike Our Namesake, Gives Pandrew The Finger

1) The amusing subplot that has followed me since the beginning of the Bears' season: Pandrew calling me with criticisms of Devin Hester. There is no feeling quite like hearing complaints about the punt returner after a 40-7 victory. Work was great, it consisted of a lot of cheering, jumping up and down, dancing, and hugging. (We wanted the Bears to win.) And finally, Rex Grossman had the single worst game in history by the quarterback of a winning team. This is not hyperbole, by the way - his QB rating was 10.7, and no winning QB has ever been lower.

2) The Cubs are in talks with Alfonso Soriano to take over Pierre's leadoff spot/CF spot. While he did walk 67 times last year, that was more walks than he had received in the two previous seasons...combined. "On-base percentage? We don't need no stinkin' on-base percentage."

Prolific Pandrew Provokes Post

I'm just trying to keep up, really.

But A-Rod? A Cub? Unacceptable. Let's look at the facts:

1) A-Rod is a quitter when it counts, and that won't apply with the Cubs.

DOESN'T MATTER.

Ramirez is fairly lousy in games that count. That's why he has lousy Aprils, and lousy first halves of May - after that, the playoffs are a fucking pipe dream anyways. So, we can get Ramirez (who I really think is awesome) for 12-15 mill a year, or we can pay out the ass (or more likely, up the ass) for A-Rod. Advantage, Aramis.

2) A-Rod will spark fan interest as a big star.

Bullshit. We're already the underdog, we're known for being the underdog, and we don't need some overpaid turncoat Dominican/American/Dominican again!!!/Just kidding, American to take that shit away from us. Besides, he's a metrosexual, and the Cubs don't do metrosexuals. We had Moises Alou, who regularly urinated on his hands. ON PURPOSE. We have Carlos Zambrano, whose closest metrosexual comparison is the guy from American Psycho (I'd look up his name, but frankly Bret Easton Ellis makes me want to break shit - the only reason I typed out his name is that now our page will hopefully get hits for "Bret Easton Ellis sucks".) The closest we came to metro was Mark Grace, who did have the good fortune to marry a lingerie model...but also chain-smoked. Sometimes, between innings. Forget role models, this is the team of Glendon Rusch and Rich Garces. We have fat-roll models.

3) Alex Rodriguez will have a short commute from his home to the ballpark.

This is actually true, as anyone who has walked two blocks east of Wrigley can attest. I'm not sure that a short commute is a viable reason to give up your best offensive player, though.

4) Lou Piniella is kind of a douchebag.

Seriously, Sweet Lou's not a total moron. He's hard-nosed, and willing to talk shit to his players when it needs to be done, and basically epitomizes all of the old-school things a manager should be. However, if I wanted a half-Hispanic manager who doesn't look it, I'd hire Pandrew. (Mainly, because that would mean I'd be the GM, and he would actually listen to all the shit I'd say.) I'm all for kicking dirt on umps, but really, is this a successful manager? Even if he does lead the Cubs to the post-season, he's proven to be fairly worthless there. (The '90 Reds don't count, because he swept out an even worse manager in the Series.)

So, I'm sure you're asking...well, A-Train, who would you have hired? I wasn't sold on Lou, and I wasn't 100% sold on Girardi...Bochy wasn't coming here, we all knew that. Mike Quade at Iowa is actually a very good minor league manager, but that's not the answer either. (Plus, he went to Prospect, and given the Cubs' track record with MSL graduates, you can see why that wouldn't work so well.) Some guy named "Razor Shines" was supposed to be the shit, but 1) he's from the Sox system and 2) Dusty Baker proved that the last thing the Cubs need is a manager with a name like a Delta bluesman. My choice: Re-hire Jim Riggleman. He was a good field boss, he's got experience, and he'd come cheap.

My Bears story, tomorrow.

Monday, October 16, 2006

It's Better Than Going Hard After David Eckstein.

ESPN headline: Source: Piniella expects Cubs to go hard after A-Rod (article)

Sources familiar with the situation told ESPN.com that Piniella, who is extremely close to Rodriguez, expects the Cubs to aggressively pursue the 10-time All-Star. The 63-year-old manager and the 31-year-old Rodriguez have what amounts to a quasi-father/son relationship; Rodriguez was managed in Seattle by Piniella from 1994-2000. It is that relationship -- and the tantalizing talent of Rodriguez -- that has prompted Piniella to want to explore a trade with the Yankees.

Considering the father/son relationship toward which this article slants, I would shy away from the headline "Piniella expects Cubs to go hard after A-Rod". But that's just me.

That said, Rodriguez, if you could get him, is an unbelievable upgrade over Ronny Cedeno/Cesar Izturis. In his last year at shortstop, he had a value over replacement player of 88.4, and last year it was 91.0. Among players with a minimum of 400 PA, only two (Clint Barmes and Yadier Molina) had VORPs lower than Cedeno (-17.1). Even this year, in what has been considered a terrible year for him, Alex Rodriguez had a VORP of 50.4 at third base. 35 HR, 113 RBI, .290/.392/.523.

A Cubs deal with the Yankees potentially could include third baseman Aramis Ramirez, who posted career highs of 38 home runs and 119 RBI in the regular season. It is thought the Yankees would also want a quality starting pitcher in any deal involving Rodriguez.

This makes the deal far less attractive. At this point, Aramis and Alex Rodriguez are worth about the same as third basemen. The only "quality starting pitcher" the Cubs could consider would be Mark Prior, but he is a number one starter when healthy and even if he never returns to 2003 form it would be overpayment to send Prior and Ramirez for A-Rod. You can't get much more out of A-Rod than Ramirez is already putting up. God I am getting nauseous thinking of it.

Piniella, who replaces Dusty Baker after the latter's four-season tenure in Chicago, agreed to a three-year deal, with a club option for a fourth, earlier Monday. He has hired most of his coaching staff and has decided, sources say, to retain Cubs pitching coach Larry Rothschild.

Go to hell.

In a completely related note, the Chicago Bears just ate the NFL version of the St. Louis Cardinals. Unbelieveable. I'll leave that for A-Train though, but I'll say this:

Devin Hester, I am sorry. You win.

Lou Had Better Hurry If He Wants To Look Presentable Before Tomorrow's Press Conference!


This card must have been printed early last week, when everyone still thought Dewey had won...I mean Piniella had been traded to the Yankees. Also apparently they thought Piniella could replace Sheff in the outfield.

The Cubs get Lou, who will make for some very interesting ballgames next year, if nothing else. And, as we at THS have little hope for the Cubs turning it around next year and expect a number of ugly losses, the Cubs' managing staff might to well to hire a few young guys who won't get worn out holding Lou back.

Maybe the Bears defensive line.

In memory of the moments Lou is bound to give us over the next three years, I give you: The Best Moments In The History Of Lou Piniella, as photographed by The Internet. Compiled by Todd Hundley Sucks.

This is what we are looking forward to most of all, next year. And what a great move by John McDonough--the guy who created the "Cubs Experience", which in his mind had nothing to do with winning but instead an entertaining atmosphere--to hire Mr. Entertainment. We might even rename him Mr. Destiny, but his brother didn't die of a drug overdose to spark his career.

Also, if I were a little less lazy, that would be Urlacher or Tommie Harris or even Office Linebacker Terry Tate giving Lou the reach-around there.

This text needs to go at least down to the end of this picture, and I am running out of things to say about it. I like how Lou is prying the other coach's arm off, as if the coach just doesn't understand what is going on, that Lou will somehow set things straight if bench coach would let him finish. There we go.



Ah, smaller picture. We learn quickly. Here Lou demonstrates just how easily the dirt surrounding home plate could become airborne, distracting a hitter or umpire. Of course, the umpire did not understand, due in part to the dust that Piniella had kicked into the air, confusing him and rendering him incapable of a sound, logical discussion of the matter. I blame the dust, at least.

Alternately, Lou's Latino heritage shows in his love for soccer. Viva futbol, el mejor de los deportes del mundo! (This view is not in any way characteristic of the THS staffers, who prefer baseball, football, and competitive darts on ESPN to soccer. More so on behalf of the A-Train; however we will betray that we both found this year's World Cup somewhat compelling.)


Lou Piniella: A man who reads while having his hair permed. A man whose legs are so smooth that I am uncomfortable thinking about it. A man strong enough to know that passable is not enough, that serviceable good looks cannot win a championship. A man from whom, we can only assume, Alex Rodriguez learned a lot.

Lou Piniella knows that if losing cannot be pretty, he ought to be.

Lou Piniella, whose waxed legs and permed hair are signs of a larger greatness. Lou Piniella: American Hero, Chicago Cub.

We salute you.





Lou managed Tampa
until they cut his hair care
benefits in half.

I Am Starting An Argument.

A-Train posted the following on October 8 in an otherwise fantastic, world-changing post:

[Ron Gardenhire] managed to lose a series to Oakland, who basically invented the concept of "we suck in October because we cannot grasp the idea that postseason baseball is not the same thing as regular season baseball".

Billy Beane: "My shit doesn't work in the play-offs. My job is to get us to the play-offs. What happens after that is fucking luck."

I think that's a clear understanding of a difference.

False!

Cubs' Mailbag (article)

A few years ago, the Cubs led the league in home runs and they were in the middle of the pack in runs. So, they added some speed at the expense of power and now they are dead-last in runs. Why can't they just admit that at least part of the problem is a lack of on-base percentage? It's obvious what side of the "Moneyball" holy war the Cubs are on.
-- Andy T., Richmond, Va.

The problem isn't just the poor on-base percentage but also a lack of situational hitting. Both matters need to be addressed.

The Cubs did almost exactly the same thing with runners on (.264/.325/.414) as they did in all situations (.268/.319/.422). It has nothing to do with situational hitting, unless you assume that the league hits much better with runners on base, which is false (bases empty versus runners on).

Also, this is not a real answer. Kind Andy T asked, "Why can't they just admit that at least part of the problem is a lack of on-base percentage?" Muskat responded, "The problem isn't just the poor on-base percentage," which is exactly what Kind Andy just said. If you have a commitment to being wrong, you ought to read the question instead of what you wish it said.

Anyway, for those of who, like me, have grown to find suspect Larry Rothschild's coaching ability:

Larry Rothschild, who just completed his fifth season as the Cubs pitching coach, was a coach on Piniella's 1990 staff.

Which means he may very well be back to manage another injury-plagued season. Fantastic.

Quick Update.

Piniella Agrees To Manage Cubs (article)

Saturday, October 14, 2006

News and Notes

One of my new bosses is a Cardinal fan. This is unacceptable, but at least it's good-natured.

For now.

As it's now Saturday, October 14...it is the 98th anniversary of the last time the Cubs won the World Series. Don't worry, we're not going to give you the "price of a gallon of milk" bullshit that everyone else does. I will merely state three simple facts.

- Less than three weeks before, Henry Ford produced the first Model T.
- Lincoln had never appeared on a penny.
- That month, "Take Me Out To The Ballgame" was written.

I'm cheering for Le Tigre in the playoffs, because they have Curtis Granderson. He's basically Grady Sizemore Lite (you know, the type of center fielder the Cubs SHOULD have), and he's from Chicagoland as well. Curt, I know what you're going through, bein' a transplant and all. Just keep representing Chicago, and get some Lou's To Go now and then. However, I must say...Kotsay's back-to-back catches were the shit. I met Kotsay a few years back, and he was quite the gracious guy...I'll root for him any day. He hustles, and he's another center fielder that I wouldn't mind seeing the Cubs having.

Re. the NLCS: I am So, So disappointed.

New and possibly exciting development: THS now has a MySpace page! Come and be our friends, it'll be a blast.

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

Something To Look Forward To!

John McDonough's arithmatic.

Here's McDonough on the Cubs' 66-96 record

You win 30 more games and you're back to .500.

Not true. Winning 30 more games gives the team a record of 96-66. Winning 15 games more would have put the Cubs at .500 on the season, at 81-81.

It's tough to squeak out wins against teams like the Pirates (6-9), Padres (0-7), Braves (1-6). Actually if you exclude the Padres, the Cubs had a winning record against winning teams in the National League (27-26). Of course, considering they do this every season.

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

FWD: THE YANKEES ARE TOAST!

There have been a number of silly responses to the Yankees' collapse. This is one of my favorites.

Murray Chass believes that Mike Mussina is the reason the Yankees have not won a World Series since he joined the team (and is possibly responsible for their failiures before that).

He writes:

Mussina joined the Yankees as a free agent six years ago. The only other players who have been with the team that long have a bunch of World Series rings:
Derek Jeter, Mariano Rivera, Bernie Williams, Jorge Posada.

Bernie Williams, aging DH: more valuable than Mike Mussina. A winner.

Mussina is the ringleader of the anti-World Series champions:
Jason Giambi, Hideki Matsui, Gary Sheffield, Alex Rodriguez, Jaret Wright, Carl Pavano, Randy Johnson , Johnny Damon, Kyle Farnsworth.

These guys don't deserve to walk the earth (Pavano actually can't.)

Seriously, what have Matsui, Sheffield, A-Rod, and Johnny Damon done but play very good baseball since they joined the team? What are the criteria for being a member of the "anti-World Series Champions"? Not having been on a winning team?

David Eckstein has been on a winning team. Juan Uribe. Ross Gload. Every utility infielder ever who somehow snuck onto a postseason roster.

Neifi Perez has a shot this year.

Mussina, like some players on that list, is a pitcher, and the lack of strong pitching has undermined the Yankees' chances of winning the World Series.

Mike Mussina has been the BEST starting pitcher on the Yankees since 2001!


This is what Mike Mussina has done with the Yankees:

W/L - 92-53
ERA - 3.80 (#1 among Yankees' starters since 2001, minimum 400 IP)
WHIP - 1.179 (#1)
K/BB - 4.11 (#1)
IP/GS - 6.42
K/9 - 7.77 (#3 behind Clemens (8.80) and Johnson ( 8.01))

[Mussina] is the symbol of the Yankees’ failure to win the World Series the last six years. If George Steinbrenner is seeking a scapegoat, make it Mussina.

Or A-Rod, who was still the best third baseman in the league this year. Or Johnny Damon, the best all-around leadoff hitter in the game. Or two great outfielders who happened to BREAK THEIR WRISTS trying to win. LOSERS.

Murray Chass, you may not understand baseball.

Monday, October 09, 2006

Sports Quote Of The Day, Out Of Context (2nd Edition)

"Listen, if Derek Jeter doesn't like you--and Derek Jeter has embraced a lot of different guys over the years--there's a problem."

--Richard Justice, on Alex Rodriguez.

Sunday, October 08, 2006

Sports Quote of the Day, Out Of Context Edition

"Those old balls last a long time and you could play with them when they got old. These balls, once they get slippery, it's going to be difficult."--Antoine Walker.

Piniella 3: Back From The Minors.

Joe Torre To Be Fired And Replaced by Lou Pinella (article).

I'm betting that Piniella will be fired during Spring Training.

Playoff analysis - and henceforth, non-Cub content

While Pandrew and I are trying to get our schedules in sync so that we can take a couple hours to do a Cub year in review, I've been watching playoff baseball. I've also taken a new job - no specifics as I like to keep my public personas separate from each other, but here is a riddle that might help:

Q: What are the odds that the Cubs win the World Series next year?
A: Whatever I say they are.

But yes, the playoffs! In a homage to myself, I'm going to go list-format and give you...TOP TEN DIVISIONAL SERIES MOMENTS WHICH I HAVE ACTUALLY SEEN.

10. Joel Zumaya. The Tigers have a guy who throws 103 miles per hour, and his name is Joel Zumaya. You probably knew that - but there is just something eminently good about watching this guy pitch. It's like Zen and Irish cover bands and fucking, all rolled into one.

9. The absolute suckdom of ex-Cubs in the playoffs. Ex-Cubs are batting .167 in the playoffs so far...that's 9 for 54. Take out Rondell White's 5-12, and you have a batting average BELOW .100 for all ex-Cubs. The pitching might be even worse: 9.1 IP, 5.78 ERA, 1.82 WHIP. When Kyle Farnsworth is your gateway to respectability, you're in trouble. This is another one that's not really an enjoyable entry on the list, but it's gotta be there nonetheless.

8. E! True Hollywood Story: Magglio Ordonez' hair. What is this, a tryout for the WMLB? The fact that an ex-White Sox looks like a total jackass isn't the surprise, but the fact that he's actually fun to cheer for is.

7. I have a co-worker who's a great guy...save for the fact that he's a Yankee fan. Today, I saw a grown man cry. Thank you, Detroit.

6. The Mets, team of destiny. My dad taught me everything I know about being a Cub fan, and one of the first things was "We don't like the Mets. It's a 1969 thing." Even so, I have to thank them for proving me right, as few other teams have done this postseason. (My pre-playoff picks to advance: Yankees, Twins, Mets, and who gives a fuck.) My response to "Pedro's out, the Mets are screwed!": "The Mets will be fine. Don't worry about it." My response to "Now El Duque's out too! The Mets are screwed!": "John Maine rules. Don't worry about it, the Mets will be fine." As if it didn't go without saying: NLCS prediction, Mets over who gives a fuck in five.

5. Milton Bradley's continued existence. He turned a flyout into a triple, he poured coffee on Estaban Loaiza during Loaiza's annual quality start, and it doesn't even hurt his rep. I love this guy.

4. Ron Gardenhire makes Dusty look good. This isn't really "top ten" in the making me happy sense, because I kind of like the Twins, but it's so notable that it warrants mentioning. He managed to lose a series to Oakland, who basically invented the concept of "we suck in October because we cannot grasp the idea that postseason baseball is not the same thing as regular season baseball".

3. Alex Rodriguez bats eighth. The last third baseman I recall batting eighth for the Cubs: Low-Down Dirty Shane Andrews. Good company, dickbag.

2. Kenny Rogers goes nuts with champagne. First, he grabs a bottle of champagne, hops up on the dugout, and starts spraying. That was fun. Then, he gets another bottle (and if you watch the tape, it's not quite clear WHERE he gets it. It's just there.), and sprays it pretty much directly at a kid in a green sweatshirt. (If it was a Michigan State sweatshirt, you can't really blame the kid.) Finally, the coup de grace (literally, "Mark Grace's cup")...he POURS A BOTTLE OF CHAMPAGNE ON A COP. If only he'd punch out a cameraman, he might be my personal hero.

1. The Most Ridiculous Double Play In Playoff History. The only thing better than an absolutely ridiculous play is an absolutely ridiculous play that makes J.D. Drew look like a complete asshole. If that doesn't make my feelings on Scott Boras' frequent sex partner (unsubstantiated) clear, here is a haiku:

I'm sorry that fans
threw batteries at your head.
Shoulda been grenades.

Let's go Padres, and let's get to the next round.

Saturday, October 07, 2006

The Russians Have Infiltrated Cubs.com!

The man writing all of the good Cubs.com articles lately is Mark Sheldon, who writes for the Cincinnati Reds and appears to continue doing so. His articles are concise, relevant, and never blame his team's failiures on God/curses.

But isn't that just like a Communist!

Thursday, October 05, 2006

Where Is Carrie Muskat? (Part 1)

There is no new information regarding Carrie Muskat's three article absence from Cubs.com. Mark Sheldon continues to perform well. And with Baker gone, the kid might not need to hit .468 to stay in the game. Remember last year when Neifi was playing center field, after Hairston was injured/bad?


The only thing interesting that came out of the search was the discovery that the Cubs' Coordinator of Marketing Administration is Sarah Poontong.

Someone Who Gets It.

John McDonough describing the managerial candidate he would like to hire, Joe Girardi; also, taking a thinly veiled jab at Dusty, who does not "get it," apparently.

Worst coaching decisions, playoffs not including two guys getting tagged out at home on the same play edition

Watching the Twins/A's game today, Ron Gardenhire made a move that made ol' Johnnie B. look good by comparison.

Exhibit A: The Twins' 8-9-1-2 hitters in today's lineup hit a combined SIX home runs this year in 1,594 at bats (1 HR/265.67 AB). For comparison: Carlos Zambrano (still a pitcher) had six home runs in 73 at bats (1 HR/12.17 AB).

Exhibit B: The Twins, with two outs in the bottom of the ninth, sent Nick Punto (1 HR in 459 AB) to the plate as the tying run in a 5-2 game. Punto had the third worst home run rate out of 162 qualifying major leaguers this year, trailing only Jason Kendall and Willy Taveras. More perspective: JUAN PIERRE was more than twice as likely to hit a home run in a given plate appearance than Punto. Juan fuckin' Pierre!

Exhibit C: The Twins had not made a substitution yet, and as such had Phil Nevin (22 HR/397 AB) remaining on the bench. Now, I'm no rocket surgeon or anything, but he was 25.6 times more likely to hit a game-tying home run than Nick Punto!

Exhibit D: Ron Gardenhire is a moron.

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

Hendry Aims To Have Big Contract Year Before Free Agency, or, alternately, The Sarge Is Dishonorably Discharged!

Maybe he'll get on the juice.

Anyway here's the deal

On Wednesday, the Cubs informed hitting coach Gene Clines, first-base coach Gary Matthews, bench coach Dick Pole, pitching coach Larry Rothschild, third-base coach Chris Speier, bullpen coach Juan Lopez and special assistant Sonny Jackson that the new manager would be responsible for hiring his own staff.

Makes sense. Is Oneri Fleita in there? No? Oh well.

The Cubs' hitters have been last in walks two years in a row by a large margin, and were in the bottom three in 2003-4. A large part of this could be the types of hitters they have been scouting (high contact, low OBP) for the past five years. But if Dusty wasn't willing to put Corey Patterson over his knee, it was Gene Clines' or Sarge Matthews' job to do so. I'm glad K-Patt has found himself in Baltimore, but I'd have much rather had him than Pierre in CF if the Cubs had had a decent hitting coach.

I don't even want to talk about Larry Rothschild. Poor mechanics or overly stressful warm-ups or whatever, there is no excuse for the injuries and the high walk totals. Hopefully somebody else can figure it out. You are the offspring of Satan. If you go to hell, every day will run as follows:

1. Throw curveballs until your elbow is torn to pieces.
2. Rain delay.
3. Throw again.
4. A trip to Northwest Community hospital, where "they put a hamstring from [your] leg into [your] arm so [you] don't know whether to call it a leg or an arm, but will race anybody on [your] hands." (verifiable)
5. Hours after surgery, being brought to the field in a wheelchair to pitch the nightcap.
6. Pass out.
7. Wake up the next morning.
8. Repeat.



I wonder if the Sarge will have his breakout year in Texas, teaching Hank Blalock to be a good hitter and stop dooming fantasy baseball teams everywhere (I know, he had surgery Monday).

Also this article was surprisingly concise, unromantic, and well-written. Which makes total sense because it was written by someone other than Carrie Muskat. Maybe she'll be replaced by...um, Mark Sheldon, as well.

EDIT: Apparently the blog published this, and I didn't. Go blog!

- Pandrew.

Tuesday, October 03, 2006

Report: Baker To Clog Up ESPN Broadcasts

It's true.

Baker, whose contract was not renewed by the Chicago Cubs on Monday, will join ESPN's postseason baseball broadcast crew this weekend.

A-Train will need to set the over/under for how many times Dusty will:

Sing Neifi Perez's praises.
Make poorly veiled criticisms of the Chicago Cubs.
Demonstrate how taking a walk is dangerous, as it can lead to a double play.
Not trust rookies.
Eat his words.
Give a lecture on "raciest" emplyoment policies.

He'll do color commentary alongside Andy MacPhail. HAHA just kidding.

Also Yankees fans--in the same inning--have chanted MVP for Derek Jeter and Mariano Rivera.

Monday, October 02, 2006

Carrie Muskat's Bosses Are The Raciest.

"I always knew I was tough," Baker said, "but now I know I'm really tough."

Earlier today, the Chicago Tribune announced that it would not offer a contract extension to Chicago Cubs manager Dusty Baker, after a season in which his team finished 66-96, last in the National League.

Carrie Muskat, of course, joined in on the chorus of "Blame Anybody But Dusty." Included in the article:

All of the Cubs players agreed it was unfair Baker, 57, took the blame for the disappointing season.

"He was the main reason why I came over here," Cubs outfielder Jacque Jones said of Baker.

"Maybe some of us should be fired or released, but it's sad that the manager, the coaches, the [general managers], the presidents -- it's sad that those guys have to go."


You mean the guys who were responsible for putting together and managing this 66-96 team? Not sad. And don't worry, Jacque, I'm sure some of your teammates will be cleaning out their lockers.

The lengthy injury list included life threatening blood clots to Glendon Rusch and Freddie Bynum, and an intrascrotal hematoma to catcher Michael Barrett because of a foul tip. Those are things no manager could prepare for.

I'd like to state that there has never been a baseball team that wasn't forced to deal with some sort of injury during the season. I would also like to point out that Glendon Rusch and Freddie Bynum were more integral to the Cubs' 96 losses than they were the 66 wins. Rusch: -12.6 VORP. Bynum: 44 K in 136 AB, with 9 BB and a .308 OBP.

And of course:

Baker wasn't consulted on the deals, such as the Aug. 20 trade which sent Neifi Perez to the Detroit Tigers. Baker found out during the national anthem of the Cubs game that day, and was called off the field to give Perez the news.

Why would the Cubs consult Baker before making ANY deals? He played Bynum and Pagan over Murton for 35 games/175 at-bats. He batted Neifi Perez first or second in the order for 684 AB over the last 2 + seasons (.269/.292/.375). He said that he would have Marshall or Hill in the rotation next year, but not both--which means that if Hill underperformed in spring training, he'd be cut to give Sean Marshall a spot in the rotation.

And also I am sure that the Cubs' brass did not break the news to Baker DURING the national anthem, forcing him to pull Neifi aside DURING the national anthem. Way to demonize your bosses, though, Carrie. Because we all know how un-American the Chicago Tribune has been (1919).
"We've been through a lot this year," Cubs outfielder Matt Murton said. "We've had a lot of new faces in this clubhouse, and no matter what happened, we went out there and continued to fight and compete. We didn't have the success we wanted in the win and loss column, but we won our last game, which was nice."

Thank you for seeing the silver lining, Murtron, and for being a robot incapable of feeling sorry for this "dude." Now please have a crazy journey through New York before upgrading your processor so that you can prove PECOTA and the Baseball Prospectus wrong by displaying considerable power next year.

We'll have something a little more substantial about Dusty tomorrow, but until then here is my favorite picture.


















Umpires are the raciest.

Sunday, October 01, 2006

Live from the Internet!

While browsing the internet tonight, I came across the LiveJournal of one "johnnieb49"...what I found can only be described as shocking. The content is reproduced below.

music: dashboard - the good fight
mood: sorrowful

uggggh 2day suckd so bad. had to work overtime and didnt even get paid for it. i talked 2 carrie and she said that mr. h was telling her i might not get to come back next yr. this sucks so much, i loved this job and i tried realy hard. i mean sure i may have messed up when i had to take care of those two girls, but i didnt kno theyd get hurt that bad. who names a girl mark anyway, i mean kerry makes sents, but mark is not a girls name people!!! newayz i think mr. h just dosent like me cuz im black, maybe ill tell carrie that and she can tell her friends and maybe we can get mr. h fired for being a raciest!!!! i wrote a poem today while i was waiting for ryan to let us all go home early, here it is

my soul is sad when i leave
i walk down the tunnel to the clubhouse
the tunnel is like an endless hallway that never ends
its like im trying too go inside myself
but all that is there is nothing
no celebration
no music
just a room with some people in it

newayz thats my poem. i should go now, got to get ready for work tomorow. mabey ill call peter francis geraci in case mr. h isnt gunna hire me back, i dun wanna have to take that job in ct. uggggh this sucks so bad

oh and one other thing. ashleigh i promised u i wouldnt but i cut today, i had to release the pain inside my mind. so its k if u dont eat bc i no we made that prmise to each other, luv ya newayz!!!!

Shocking. Truly shocking.

Also shocking: As of today, the Cubs have clinched the dishonor of being the worst team in the National League. This has happened most recently in 2000 (tie), and before that, the two consecutive seasons of 1980-81.

Positive news: Pope Carlos will have the best ERA on the Cubs for the third straight season, becoming the first Cub to lead the team in ERA three years in a row since Fergie Jenkins in 1966-68. Should he make it four next year, though, he'll be the first since Clark Griffith in 1894-99. Zambrano had an easy road to the title, though...he's the ONLY Cub who qualified this year. We're in good company, though...the other teams who didn't qualify multiple pitchers? Kansas City (M. Redman), Washington (R. Ortiz), and Tampa Bay (none). Trivial info: The last team to have NO qualifiers was the 1998 Cardinals, where ex-Cub Kents Bottenfield and Mercker missed qualifying by 1/3 and 2/3 of an inning, respectively.

Still distressing: Our rotation looks like this...

1. Carlos Zambrano
2. Rich Hill
3. Henry Rowengartner
4. M. Gandhi
5. Sean Marshall

Hurts the head, dunnit?