The West Coast Swing
It is my opinion, and I love the West Coast in general, but when the Cubs do their swing by the Left Coast, I immediately cringe. It is, in my mind, the Bermuda triangle of baseball. The only problem with the analogy? It is not a triangle, it is a straight line down the coast, with this years trip ending in one of the worst parks for offense in all of baseball. For a young team relying on the homerun for most of their production, this sets them up for quite a trap, but we will come back to this…
Sure , there is a novelty to watching the Cubs play on the West Coast. I don’t mind staying up to watch the first few innings of games in San Fran and L.A. Those two parks provide enough scenery to keep the desire to watch at a minimum level before the general boredom sets in. For one reason or the other once the Cubs hit La La Land they seem to slow down a beat or two. Even with the day games in L.A. the past couple days, it still seems to move slow for me. The novelty fully wears off by the time we hit “The Whale’s Vagina” AKA, San Diego.
San Diego may very well be in my top 5 most disliked ballparks. Offense is usually at a premium as is the long ball. On top of that Anthony Rizzo seems to get some sort of mental hitting block upon arriving at Petco. I know it is generally a tough park to hit in for lefties, but it has to be Rizzo’s kryptonite. Just when he appears to be turning the corner with the bat and ready to fall back into his usual reliable self at the plate we get a dose of Petco. Maybe he is still scarred from his days wearing the old poop and piss colors?
Even bad Padre teams, which is what they usually are, can make the Cubs seem inept in San Diego at times. I don’t know if it’s the fact that it typically is the last stop on the long road trip or we just play down to the competition but no matter how bad the Padres are we seem to struggle with them. Even when we win, it feels as though we struggle to do it. It is very possible this is all in my mind and things are well and good, maybe I am the one struggling with the road trip more than the team? Jesus, is this possible?
Ending the West Coast swing is relieving for me. It almost feels like some strange break in the season is over and we can get back to playing baseball again. It is like an All-Star break or a four game set in Miami, it just doesn’t feel like real baseball. Actually, now that I think about it, Miami might even be worse!
The more I think about it, the more I feel like this might be a “me” problem and not a “Cubs” problem?
We all have places, cities, or ballparks that seem less fun to watch our Cubs play in, what are “away” games that give you the least amount of pleasure watching?