Thursday, July 31, 2008
Wow. I would've been happy if the Cubs won 3 up north. But a sweep? Wow...
Harden gets his first win! woo hoo! But he only struck out 9 in 7 innings this time, so overall, not a great performance...:)
Great offense, great pitching. Hey Brew Crew - this is how the big boys play. Don't worry, I'm sure you'll catch up to the wild card leader soon enough.
Wow. Went into this series hoping to wrestle 1st place away, and you end up in third. I'd love to say, I'm sorry, but I'm really not.
BTW: Ned, Eric, Prince -...... really? lol
Overall, can be unhappy. Harden's about to get his first win, unless "Bomb" Howry manages to blow an 8-run lead - even that should be safe from him...Gaudin's been filthy. The Brewers made a couple of big deals that will help them, but not enough. The Cardinals did squat. Which is, by the way, exactly what they'll do in this Divison.
One last thing - What the heck are the Sox thinking??? People are HAPPY about this? Glad I'm not a Sox fan, I'd be pissed...
All we are is minutes in the wind....
Wednesday, July 30, 2008
Magic Number: 51
Home Games Left: 28
Road Games Left: 26
Total games left: 54
There's math here, but also probabilities, but I won't make a mathematically based guess on when/if the Cubbies clinch. The rest of the schedule looks interesting. If the bats can stay alive on the road, and the pitching performs as it has been, life looks pretty rosy. But that's a LOT of ifs, especially with the last 13 games being played vs. STL, MIL, and NYM. Good game tonight. I am now happy. If they get blown out tomorrow, that'll bring me down a bit, but 3 of 4 is more than I realistically expected, so good times.
Keep those bats going and keep the patience at the plate going, and pray that the Ramirez deal goes through depriving Pittsburg of Jason Bay, along with Nady and Marte.
I'd still like to see Sherrill wearing Cubbie Blue.
Another minute in the books.
LaTroy Hawkins was recently acquired by the Houston Astros, further cementing themselves in the basement of the NL Central. Should make that race for last with the Pirates interesting to watch, needless to say.
Sources close to the trade said "Although the Pirates remain the team to beat for dead last in the Divison, the Astros have made a significant leap toward that feat with this trade." Actually, no one said that but me, and I'm not close to the trade, but it's still funny :D
Bada bum bum bum. Another minute bites the dust...
Tuesday, July 29, 2008
"Think about what we need to do, and people say, 'Put Konerko on the bench, do this with Konerko, do that with Konerko,'" Guillen said. "Who's going to play first? Swisher? Oh? Do me a favor, check the book first and check Swisher and Konerko's averages, and it's not that much different.
"In the meanwhile, who do I got in center field? Brian [Anderson]? Hello. [Dewayne] Wise? That's why people think it's easy to say, 'Make out the lineup, here's what it is.'
Ok, so not only do you have Mendoza playing first for you, but now you're ripping on your own team? Are you kidding me? This from the guy who just over one week ago said,
"We don't expect to do anything, but you never know," Guillen said. "We will find out what we really need to get this team better. If we don't do anything, people will start criticizing our organization. [But] I believe we can do this with the people we have here.
"[If] everyone does their job, not more, this ballclub should be fine. There's too much talent out there. It's about the team. It's all about them."
Ozzie, why don't you wake up and smell what you're shoveling?
More than a minute, which is much more that that dip___ deserves...
What an a-hole...
Great outing by Z and the offense tonight. Good to see the bats come alive again on the road. With Dempster and Harden going, you're almost starting to talk Sweep...I dunno...
Samardzija gave up a run, but with a 7-0 lead, your job is to throw strikes. No biggie. Run with it kid. 2 of 4. So far, I'm happy...we'll see how long it lasts....
Hey. I'm just being honest...
Another minute, another W.
Again, great win, so that rules. A buddy of mine asked if we should have a bet - who gets more wins - Harden or Gaudin? Not funny, but funny.
If I can figure out how to do a poll, maybe I'll put Bomb or Gopher up for a vote...
There's a minute for ya. Let's kick the crap out of Sheets
Monday, July 28, 2008
Bottom line - CC's tired - 3 complete games in a row. Without a lot of first-pitch swinging, he won't go 9. Sheets is a injury waiting to happen. He's also prone to steals. Cubbies better be running like jackrabbits tomorrow. Get them out of the game early - 6th or 7th inning, and we've got a good chance. Deep counts. I know I said that yesterday, but this is emphasis. The Brewers bullpen is an accident waiting to happen. Also keep an eye on Bill Hall in the late innings. He's on a bit of a hot streak. And we already know about Braun and Fielder.
If the Cubs win 3 of 4, I'm extatic. If they lose 3 of 4, it's not horrible, but it will certainly ruin my week. My best realistic hope - 2 of 4. I can live with that.
But also consider - the Cubs are 1 sweep away from just about burying the Brewers...Cross your fingers Cubs fans. They ARE on the road...[shudder]
Sunday, July 27, 2008
The BIG series begins tomorrow. Biggest of the year? Maybe. Biggest of the year thus far? Definitely. Cubs ned to win two to leave town in first place. Gonna be rough. Lilly v. Sabathia - ew. Z v Sheets. Interesting.
The key for the next two games, and really all four, but especially against Sabathia and Sheets - Deep counts and a lot of them. Foul balls galore. Get those guys OUT of there, and then systematically dismantle their bullpen.
Here's hoping - and a minute for you...
Saturday, July 26, 2008
A pitcher starts a game and gets b$%^-slapped for 5 runs in the first. Gets pulled. Your team comes back and scores 4 runs in the first, but then the other team scores another 20 the rest of the game. During that same game, your team scores 2 more runs, and at no time is the score tied.
Why does that starting pitcher get the loss? Your team scored enough to erase the initial deficit. Shouldn't the pitcher who gave up the 7th run get the loss? That run was the game winner.
Similarly, if a Starting pitcher pitches 8 2/3 solid innings of one run ball, then gets pulled. Some dude comes in and gets out #27. Your team rallies back for 2 in the bottom of the ninth. The reliever gets the win. What kind of crap is that? What did that reliever do? One pitch and he gets a win? That's crap.
Just a thought and a minute.
Friday, July 25, 2008
What I do know is Marmol, while he hasn't been terrible his last few outings still ain't right. Bob "Gopher-ball" Howry isn't right. Woody's widdle finger hurts, so long story short, we've got issues.
I'm thinking Eyre-Cedeno for Sherrill, a proven closer. 46K's in 42 IP. 7 Blown saves, which is kinda scary, but still. You trade a solid lefty for a solid uninjured lefty, and a SS in the package. Win-Win. Plus Eyre's a FA this year - Sherrill's under team control for at least another year if not more. This is all contingent on whether or not there's a SS in AAA ready to step up, and to be honest, I don't know.
Just a thought...and a minute...
Thursday, July 24, 2008
Going to the game tomorrow. Should be pretty sweet. Main reason I got these particular tickets at the beginning on the season (and remind me to talk about that some time) was it's build-a-bear day at Wrigley for kids 13 and under. My 21 month old qualifies. I had finished my purchases for the day, and figured how bout one more game? Hey build-a-bear! Sweet!
Oh lord...Styx is singing Take me out to the ballgame... Gotta appreciate a band with no vowels in their name...I'll talk more aobut the 7th inning stretch some time too...
Tuesday, July 22, 2008
Marquis gave up 3 in 6IP. Can't really complain about that.
Ward hit a meaningless home run. Whoopee. Maybe he can get his swing back and, what's the word I'm looking for? Oh yeah, Produce.
Well have to see what tomorrow brings as Lilly makes his triumphant return...Sigh....
At least some of the commercials were funny...
There's a minute.
Monday, July 21, 2008
Marquis is pitching tomorrow...Great...Lovely...Marvelous...
The bats fell asleep on the plane again. Maybe we should put these guys in buses so they dont' sleep so well at night. The Cubs do have this winning at home thing down, but 2 hits against Randy Johnson. 7 years ago, I'd be celebrating that. Tonight it just pisses me off...
Note to Cubs: A 360 foot out is still an OUT.
Harden's stuff was weird. Balls were either up, or in the dirt. His strikes were STRIKES. Missed a lot of bats. Except one of course...
Seems appropriate that the winning run tonight was #$%head's first career HR. Sucks that it came off Harden, but right now he's gotta be thinking "What the hell do I have to DO???"
That's a minute, which is about how long this game lasted...Goes quick when you get 2 hits doesn't it?
Sunday, July 20, 2008
Good to see Demp get a win on the road...only took 3 1/2 months, but hey. can't argue with 11-4. Here's a funny little anecdote...
MLB.com's gameday (my primary source of baseball when confined to my desk) has a new feature this year - Video clip highlights! Very cool. Apparently the game today was so unremarkable for the Astros, their ONE video clip was Geoff Blum (remember him Sox fans?) make a routine play at third. This 18 second clip was sandwiched between an RBI double for Lee and a Fontenot's shot to right. LOL. Here's your clip Astros fans! Enjoy it.
One last note - Dempster loads the bases nobody out. K - K - 5. Gotta love it.
On to Arizona where we can bi^&* slap those snakes at home...hopefully we'll still remember how to hit after the plane ride...
There's a minute for you...
Saturday, July 19, 2008
Another interesting bit of trivia - The Cubs have not won back-to-back series on the road (oops! Thanks readers!) ONCE this year. Ouch babe. That just isn't going to cut it. I believe there are about 35 or so home games left. That does not bode well.
This is going to be a critical month in the schedule. Most of the games are going to be against Central teams, with I believe 10 or more games between the Brewers and the Cardinals each. I don't' have the numbers, but things can go south real fast.
Pitching hasn't been too much of a concern on the road, but our hitting is just awful...
That's a minute for ya.
Thursday, July 17, 2008
The players, even from teams not in contention seemed to play it out and wanted to win. That's the thing, Selig. I think the players probably didn't like the outcome in Milwaukee either. It doesn't have to count to make it a good game. Overall, it was a very well played and exciting game. I personally wish the outcome had been different, but I'm sure there are just as many who were happy with it.
That's a minute. Now we get back to real baseball. THESE games count...
Dan Uggla does not suck. Far from it. That night however, he played like crap. The only spectaular thing he did that night was to commit 3 errors and have two bad at bats in extra innings. All Star pressure? Maybe. Whatever it was, Dan Uggla, you sucked on Tuesday night/Wednesday morning. Hopefully that will be remembered for future All Star games.
Thanks for giving me another reason for disliking you, other than beating up on the Cubs...
There's a minute for you. Feel free to suck the next time you play the Cubs...
And then - and I couldn't tell if I was more angry or amused by this ultimate display of hypocrasy - to top it all off, here's what happened in the 7th inning.
"Now batting, JD Drew"
So tell me Yankees fans....Which is it, you hypocritical morons?
Let me tell you something. When Albert Puljos came to bet every time, I was cheering for him to smack a ball into New Jersey because for that night, he was on our side. You just demonstrated to the world the idocy that reigns in the Bronx. Thanks for reminding me, dipsh__s....
There's a minute for you, which is more than any Yankees fan deserves...
Wednesday, July 16, 2008
5 days All star break. ASG playted on day 4. Here's why. Starting pitchers pitching on Sunday are assumed to be too tired (read: fragile) to pitch two days later. Maybe this is the case. I don't know. But 4 days rest is not completely crazy for pitching 3 innings.
Fan voting - Fans get to vote in their favorites for each position. But they do not vote STARTERS. This allows a manager to put the best team on the field, and plug in where necessary.
Player voting - see above.
Alternates in case of injury - Manager's Discretion. Period.
"Super-Utility" selection - Could be a player vote. Could be a fan vote. Whatever. Qualifying player must have at lease 20 AB's while playing at least 3 different positions of the season. This does NOT includ DH. Gives the manager more flexibility.
Expanded rosters. Each team's manager selects 3 ptichers to be used only if the game enters extra innings, AND the bullpen is empty. Avoids Francona's stress in the 15th.
Everybody has to play - What is this? Freakin' little league? Your guy doesn't get in the game, deal with it.
Managing the ASG - Manager of the Teams with the best records in their respective leagues at the exact half way point, not at the break. You're playing for the Series, you should help determine who get's the bump. Example, last year, enter the conspiracy theories. Tony LaRussa manages the ASG, and with the NL down by one run in the bottom of the 9th, with one on, he chooses between Aaron Rowand and Albert Puljos. His team's not the race. Puljos is arguably one of the best hitters in the game. He goes with Rowand.
Put that minute in your pipe and smoke it :)
An exhibition game should NEVER determine the most important advantage in sports for the most important series in that sport. More on home field advantage later. The winning league of the ASG should be given a 2-3 game handicap when determining home field advantage. Example this year's WS contenders - THIS IS NOT A PREDICTION, just an example.
Red Sox - 94-68 vs Cubs 97 - 65.
Red Sox given 2 game handicap - 96 wins vs 97. NL gets home field.
By today's standards, here's another example:
Rays (wild card) 87-75 vs Cubs 97 - 65.
Michael Young hits a sac fly. AL gets homefield advantage. Cubs play the best season in recent memory and get screwed.
There's a minute on that...
First of all, what is ok about it -
Fan voting - An exhibition game is by and for the fans. More power to ya. Do you vote the starters? We'll get to that.
Players voting - Voted in by your peers. That's cool.
Every team having a rep - Just because your team sucks doesn't mean there is never a diamond in the rough. Every team should represent, and that's all good.
Home Run Derby/other festivities - These are all good in the hood. Run with em. I'd like to see a bit more coverage of the other things except highlights on sprots center. Run the parade. Run the Celebrity game a full 7 innings like it should be. Etc.
That's a minute on what works. And now...
Marmol, well, Marmol did well. Can't complain about a scoreless inning...that IS what we're paying him for. I didn't get a chance to really see his stuff because I was pacing back and forth and missed many of his pitches. To be honest, I don't remember much about his specific outing. One of the problems with a late ending game and a full day of activity following. I heard/saw a few swings and misses, so that's a good thing.
As I said before, the Cubs put their best foot forward, and it was NOT because of them that Game 1 will not be at Wrigley. More on that later.
Another minute in the books, another BS exhibition game determines the most important advantage in the most important Series in baseball.
Selig - you screwed up. Change it back and move on.
Tuesday, July 15, 2008
Gange, Hoffman, Lidge.
Nate McLouth is my new hero, except when he plays the Cubs...then @#$% him.
Aaron Cook got out of jams for 3 consecutive innings including a bases loaded, no out inning. But then again he did get IN to those jams in the first place. Overall - clutch.
You can't really fault Lidge, though I would love to know how he's giving up that many fly balls and he pitches at Citizen's Bank Park?
Anywho...the American League wins again...Michael Young gets the game winning RBI...again...
I hate that man... At least is wasn't Quentin...
There's another minute...
The Cubs represented very well...except Fukudome, but hey, scroll down, that's not a surprise...
I guess the Cubs will have to win one road game - not totally out of the question. It just means game 4 of the sweep will be at Wrigley...
Dang...I almost got that out with a straight face...
That's a minute for you...many many more to come...
Man that sounds ridiculous as I type it. But hey, it works. The home run derby last night was mostly boring, but Josh Hamilton, his BP pitcher, the whole thing was just a crazy and also inspiring story. Drugs, loyalty, you name it. 28 Home Runs in round 1. The guy was unstoppable - and we almost had him...That's the Cubs connection for this blog.
Mostly, he was just fun to watch last night. Not much more to be said here tho. He didn't win which was not entirely surprising, but a shame nonetheless.
And PS Mike Greenberg - I would've put Boggs on too...
That's my minute.
Monday, July 14, 2008
Some might speculate that Theriot's September last year might be cause for concern, but overall he's just too good to give up on, especially since he's been so valuable up to now and Greene's been....well....Greene.
I could see perhaps involving him in a multi-team deal, or to be used as trade bait, but aside from that, I don't see it.
That's a minute....
Sunday, July 13, 2008
So about that kid that got nailed with the foul ball. Sucks to be him, but seriously dad - why didn't you catch the ball??? You bring your kid, you bring your glove, wear it at all times, don't drink, and sit between him and the plate, staring at the batter at ALL times. Seriously dude.
I saw the kid had a glove, why didn't HE catch it?
Ok, but no joke - I'm glad the kid's gonna be ok. Dad prolly slept on the couch for a couple of days, but the kid's gonna be ok. Maybe dad should think twice when ordering those box seats in the future?
Ok, that's my minute.
"Hey Carlos, you blew a 5 run lead yesterday and pissed away a great start from our new ace pitcher. Congratulations - you're going to the All Star Game!"
If you suspected that there is no justice in this world, here's your proof:
I....I....Right now I just have nothing to say about this right now...
He doesn't deserve one, but that's a minute...
4 all stars. What? Fukudome's been stinking up the joint lately and if Clint Hurdle knows anything about anything he won't play past his first at bat? Huh...
Congrats Cubs fans! The Cubs will set the record for most invited spectators at the All Star Game...La Di Freakin' Dah!'
Is it still too late to vote in Mark DeRosa?
That's my minute...well, 50 seconds....40...you get the idea.
I caught myself last night. Both the Brewers and the Cards have lost games late and I sat there saying to myself "That's what you get for having a crappy bullpen." Oh wait. I realized our bullpen ain't looking much better. I'd love to know what our bullpen's ERA is for the past week or two. I cant' remember a day that our bullpen hasn't given up at least 1 run.
That's not good by any measure. So, we's got's to get out sh^& together too.
Oh, by the way - once again - Best Record in Baseball. That helps a bit too...
There's a minute for ya...
Saturday, July 12, 2008
I can't even adequately describe how I feel right now...perhaps later.
There's a minute for you...
I'm not sure who I'm more upset with right now. Marmol for being a flake all of a sudden - have a fun trip to the DL or the minors or both, or Piniella for not pulling him, oh 3 runs ago. You have Marshall and Lieber in the pen and maybe you want Marmol to learn a "life lesson" and get himself out of trouble, but you pissed away a good start, and made the offense go back to work. As I write, it's still the 9th, so I don't even know if you two pissed away a full game.
It's ridiculous that the game got that out of hand. It wasn't fast, it was bloopers and errors. It was loaded bases. It was bull#$%^.
Going into the 10th. That's my minute.
Friday, July 11, 2008
Marquis actually did kinda suck at the beginning of the year, so maybe he got it out of his system. Time (August) will tell...meantime, assuming Harden isn't a DL trip waiting to happen, he'll do just fine as a number 5.
On a cuter note, Ryan Theriot's 3 year old son Houston (Houston? seriously? You were a CUB when you named him...) sang his rendition of "Take Me Out to the Ballgame" on Sportsnite tonight. Very cute.
56-37. Hopefully we return to 20 games over before the All Star Break. Brewers lost. Eat it Brew Crew.
P.S. No looking at magic numbers until the All Star Break. I've resisted thus far - so can you...
That's my minute...
Thursday, July 10, 2008
Welcome to Chicago Chad.
Cory Provus takes over for Pat Hughes for one inning. I don't get this. Why do you remove your best asset, and put in - and no offense intended to Cory - an inferior product? He does a passable job, but can't you switch Santo out for an inning? Please?? Maybe your arguement is that Cory doesn't do analysis. That's ok. Neither does Ron.
I know I'm in the minority here, but I celebrate when the Cubs take a road trip and bring along Dave Otto. Now that's analysis. Not Steve Stone analysis, but at elast he doesn't groan and whine with every pitch that's thrown.
Ok, that's my minute, but beleive me...there will be many more on this topic.
Wednesday, July 9, 2008
Would've liked to see Gaudin in there with a 4 run lead, but no worries. We need to get Marmol back on track...looks like he ALMOST had it today, but then lost it after that close play at first.
Good to see Z didn't miss a step after the DL. be interesting to see if/when he pitches in the ASG. meantime, cards and brews lost...woot!
That's my minute...
Tuesday, July 8, 2008
Murton and Patterson and are corner outfielders (with Patterson also playing 2B). We have Fukudome and Soriano for 4 and 7 more years respectively - no job opportunities there. We've got Fontenot, DeRosa, and Cedeno at 2B. No job opps there. Gallagher will probably be good, but not today. So basically we gave away 2 pinch hitters and a bullpen guy.
Harden from what I've heard has Carlos Zambrano stuff with Kerry Wood injury history. Scary, both good and bad. I heard once that Harden has yet to pitch 10 consecutive starts without some sor tof delay/DL stint. Scary. Legit #2? Oh yeah. So now Dempster is #3 and Lilly is #4. Who gives a crap who is #5? Very good deal. I'll reserve judgement until Harden and Gaudin pitch a few times.
Ok, that's my minute, but more to follow I'm sure.
Sunday, July 6, 2008
Fukudome? hmm..tough call. You ask me a month ago, and I say "No Doubt". Nowadays? hmm...Good for Ryan Braun. He deserves it. I'll bet Griffey's pretty PO'ed though...
End of the day, it'll be good for the Cubs. Who closes if there's a lead? Lidge. No Question. He of the sub 1 ERA. I can live with that. Although if memory serves, the past two years, the AL has won the ASG in the 9th. Once off Gagne, and once of Hoffman. Maybe they should have Woody up, ya know. Just in case. Looking at the teams though, I have to say the AL looks much scarier than the NL. Time will tell. One week. Should be sweet. Maybe Zambrano will be able to dodge the fungos this year and get to play...
Another minute in the books....er...blog....whatever...
Ok, first- Wood had converted his last 12 consecutive save opps. Second, have you been WATCHING Marmol lately?? For crap's sake...
I took the positives away from the game. Ramirez broke his 0-28 slump with his homer and Marmol pitched a perfect 8th.
Save or no save, you walk the first to batters in the ninth, and you have issues. Woody just didn't have it. Stuff happens. No worries. As it turns out, we won the series, so all is ok in the end.
Woody's a lights out closer. He won't convert every time, and it will SUCK when he doesn't, but please. Can we NOT get these phone calls every time he doesn't? Please?
Ok, that's my minute.
Not because she says "Home team", though she does. Not because her video shows kids with about 16 different uniforms running off the field after a game, which she does and that's just wrong. It's peppy. It's a fun version of the song, and if I were going to do it, I'd probably do it just like her. No, my reason for not voting for her version - She's wearing a Cardinals T-shirt.
Ok. That's my minute.
Lotta minutes today. Heck. I got three months to catch up with...
The gauntlet has been thrown Hendry. Think we can survive with Lilly being our number 2? 5 seconds? 4....3....NO! Now get on the phones. And if you counter with Randy Wolf, I swear I'll wait until you get married and then slap your wife!
Ok, that's my minute.
Cubs are in first, so good for us. 7 All-stars on the team this year, including the sleeper candidate - Ryan Dempster.
That's my minute. See you tomorrow-ish