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Monday

20

November 2017

78

COMMENTS

November 20th in Cubs History

Written by , Posted in General

CURRENT NEWS

Things are still quiet on off-season front, but there are a few nuggets of information for all you rumor hounds. Personally, I like reporting on things that have happened, rather than speculating, but I understand the need to write something.

It appears that the Alex Cobb sweepstakes is going to come down to the Yankees and the Cubs. My guess is that the Cubs are the front runner as the Yankees have a lot of young arms that are cost controlled and they hover around the luxury tax threshold already. Throw in the familiarity for Cobb with Joe Maddon and, more importantly, Jim Hickey and you have what appears to be all signs pointing to Chicago.

NEWS FROM DAYS PAST

1987 –  Don Zimmer, former skipper of the Padres, Red Sox, and Rangers, is hired by longtime-friend Jim Frey to manage the Cubs. In his last managerial stint, ‘Popeye’ will compile a 265-258 (.507) record during his 3+ year tenure in Chicago.

1952 –  Hank Sauer is named National League Most Valuable Player by the Baseball Writers Association of America. The Cubs finished in fifth place despite Sauer’s 37 home runs and 121 RBI.

BIRTHDAYS

Sam Fuld – 1981

Alex Arias – 1967

Jay Johnstone – 1945

Rick Monday – 1945

Jess Dobernic – 1917

Andy Coakley – 1882

Clark Griffith (HOF) – 1869

Laurie Reis – 1858

  • Eddie Von White

    Jay and Rick are really getting old.

  • Doc Raker

    Andy Coakley was something to watch play baseball

    • JTBarrett16

      I think he was one of the ringers Mr. Burns wanted for the company softball game

      • Brad Lyerla

        Annie Oakley. Typos . . .

      • JTBarrett16

        D’oh!

    • Oh yes! This Van in Historn. One of my very favorite columns.

      • Adam Peters

        I fear Historn shall repeat itself.

  • Buddy

    I wonder if there are Cub fans out there who are still pissed that they let Sam Fuld move on.

    • Sam Fuld’s Mom

      I sure the hell am

      • Sam Fuld’s ex-roommate

        Me too. He owes me 50 bucks!

  • Brad Lyerla

    Check out Mark Bowman’s explanation of why he gave Kris Bryant his vote for MVP http://m.cubs.mlb.com/news/article/262070398/why-kris-bryant-got-first-place-mvp-vote/

  • Sherm

    Laurie Reis is a very interesting case, because he was a pitcher, AND the last baseball player ever named Laurie. Pretty sure.

    Rick Monday was born on a Tuesday. Probably.

    Rick Monday and Jay Johnstone. Separated at birth? You decide:

    • they were born on the same day (November 20th. Probably a Tuesday)
    • both served in the Marine Corps Reserve
    • both bath left
    • they each played for the A’s, Cubs, and Dodgers
    • started MLB careers in 1966
    • their pro baseball-playing careers lasted 2 decades
    • they had similar career batting averages (Johnstone: .267, Monday: .264)

    Monday rescued the American flag from being burned by two fans in center field at Dodger Stadium in 1976. He said after the game, “If you’re going to burn the flag, don’t do it around me. I’ve been to too many veterans’ hospitals and seen too many broken bodies of guys who tried to protect it.” Monday still has the flag he rescued from the protesters; he has been offered up to $1 million to sell it, but has declined all offers. Will someone please forward this information to Colin Kaepernick and the rest of the NFL and tell them to take their protest and shove it up their collective bargaining agreement? I’m FINE with protests, in general, as long as they are peaceful – but these are a) employees on their employer’s time, and b) celebrities who are easily well enough connected to the media, and have the capital to tell their story – whatever it may be – on a different platform of their choosing (i.e. OUTSIDE of the beginning of pro football games. Take out ads. Do talk shows. March. Whatever. But respect the flag that represents the freedom that ALLOWS you to protest and say what you want in the first place. NO ONE is FOR any kind of brutality toward persons of ANY color, race, religion, sex…) Soapbox closed, sorry for the rant. Had NO idea that was coming out, but I’ll tell you this. It starts happening in baseball? I’m out.

    And now back to our regularly scheduled program…

    I like the fact that Theo and Jed have been fairly quiet thus far. If St. Louis gives up the farm for Stanton? Good. He’ll never be better than he is now, and that contract is a financial hamstring pull.

    I still bring back Arrieta. Only way I wouldn’t is if the funds required would keep the team from paying the young studs when their time comes, but I don’t think the Cubs are in that position, at ALL.

    I’ve heard chatter of a Lackey return. Please. No.

    I saw and spoke with Carlos Zambrano yesterday at the airport in Cartagena. Very nice guy – mountain of a man. Looks like he could play tomorrow for the Cubs. Or the Bears. I told him i liked watching him pitch but LOVED watching him hit. He said he loved to hit. He should go play in Japan. But he seemed super happy and was, as I said, very open to conversation and didn’t seem bothered by some stupid fan interrupting his time.

    More later. Or not. Happy Thanksgiving week, VFTB Family!

    • Doc Raker

      Sherm nails it again. Where is Lizzie now? Buddy?

    • JTBarrett16

      I disagree on the anthem protests. It’s free speech, which is what the people who serve are defending. I may not agree with it, but I will defend their rights to say it. I’m tired of people who say they aren’t watching because of the protests. To me, they’re not true fans. Let them protest, let them stay inside for the anthem, I don’t care. All I want is my games. End rampage before this becomes a full blown political discussion.

      Did you get a photo with B the C?

      • Sherm

        Disagree on 2 counts and I’m all for free speech. They are on their employers time. You work for someone so I think you understand how that goes. The fans at the game PAID to be there to see football, not a political/social protest. They should not have to be part of that. Take the protest to ground and time that YOU the protestor pay for…not someone else. If the lady who cuts my hair made a social/political statement at work before each haircut? She’s be fired and/or she’d lose clients like me.

        Your right to free speech does not include the right to say whatever you think on company time. Surprises me that you can’t see that.

      • Sherm

        Yes on the photo, but since you have no respect for the man, I’m exercising my right not to share it with you

      • JTBarrett16

        B the C had no respect for the Cubs management or his teammates

      • Doc Raker

        When you are the phone with a client can you say whatever you want to them an expect to keep your job? The NFL owners stood down on requiring their employees not to offend out of political correctness fear. That is not to be respected.

    • Brad Lyerla

      It ain’t freedom if you have to do it. My solution is to not play the national anthem at sports events. It’s phony patriotism. All show and no sacrifice.

      • JTBarrett16

        I’ve said it should be done on select games, Opening Day, holidays, and 9/11. When I was in high school, we even played it before swim meets at Niles North and New Trier. I got to thinking, it worked as a segway between the end of warm-ups, and now it’s game time. I always swam backstroke on the medley relay, which was the lead-off leg of the first event. So the anthem in a way served as my warning to get ready.

      • Brad Lyerla

        It’s like communion. When they do it every service, it stops being miraculous. But more than that, I just don’t like mindless patriotism. It interferes with clear thought and enables authoritarianism.

        My dad taught biology at Niles North in the 70s. My kids went to New Trier in the 90s and early 2000s. Both really good schools. You were lucky to go there.

        When I was in high school, I got sick and tired of the anthem before all our football and basketball games. We were in Vietnam and racism in sports was a constant subject in the news. I just did not want to be reminded of politics at a ball game.

        One night we were visiting Prospect (I went to Conant) and to relieve my irritation, I stepped forward and sang the whole damn anthem at the top of my lungs. It caught everyone by surprise. My coach clapped me on the back and it became a thing. For some it was patriotic. For some it was ironic. For me, it was just being a high school kid with mixed feelings about everything.

        I will go on for a moment longer, at the risk of high jacking the conversation. One of the last games that I attended at Wrigley this season involved a mild anthem-related event. I was there with my friend Sandy. Sandy is from Brooklyn. He is not a big guy. He attended MIT and the University of Chicago in the early 60s. He has 50 or 60 patents and is involved in promoting science in a number of ways. He also is a Cubs fanatic. He wears more logo wear to the game than I have owned in my entire life.

        So there we are in my regular seats. I am two heads taller than Sandy and he is in all this Cubs regalia. The anthem is about to begin, and he says to me, “I am going to take a knee.” Leaning down I say, “what?” He says, “I am going to take a knee”. I said, “OK.”

        Sandy goes to one knee. Guy behind us says loudly, “some people”. I turn around and glare.

        He wilts.

        Inside I am rejoicing. After turning to glare, I realize that I have put myself in a bad situation. What if the guy makes an issue of it? You see, I am big. But I am old, skinny and cowardly. This could go very badly, I realized.

        But I dodged the bullet. And I was proud of my friend

      • cap’n realist

        I was really hoping this would end with the guy behind you slapping some patriotism into little Sandy. To each their own I suppose…I guess I just have better taste in friends.

      • Brad Lyerla

        Shame on you.

      • Sherm

        Conversely, however, the guy behind you had every right to voice his displeasure without your glare, no?

      • JTBarrett16

        Everyone has a right to their actions. Brad’s friend has a right to take a knee, the guy has a right to be mad, and Brad has a right to glare at him. If the guy takes a swing at Brad and his friend, he’s looking at time in the slammer.

      • Brad Lyerla

        That’s a tougher question. Sandy was responding to an invitation to show a political response. But the guy was not invited to respond to Sandy’s response.
        They are not equal.

        That’s the problem with playing the anthem in the first place. You are hoping for a particular response. But you don’t have the right to insist upon the response that you want.
        Sandy is free to respond as he pleases, and he isn’t inviting anything by doing so. It really has to be that way. Otherwise the dissenting minority can always be bullied by the majority. And our most sacred political institutions are set up to protect against that happening.
        That’s why our ancestors left Europe. So the kings, the pope the aristocracy could not require them to bow down to ideas that they did not accept, even when they were in the minority.
        It is the thing about the U.S. that some of us love the best.

      • Doc Raker

        Such the lawyer, always arguing your point of view is closer to Jesus than the other guy. Everyone has a right to voice their opinion whether invited or not. Most only voice their opinion without invitation when truly offended. So be it.

      • Doc Raker

        You must of missed CNN’s broadcast of all those lefties slapping, punching, throwing stones and vandalizing property simply because they oppose someone across the political aisle. Did you miss all that? See- Berkley and how many other campuses with the violent left at work.

      • Brad Lyerla

        Doc, this is a perfect example of a smart guy arguing like a child instead of a citizen arguing thoughtfully and with principle. Nothing that I said exonerates illegal or violent behavior from the left. This is a false equivalence. It is not responsive to a single thing that I have said.
        Why do accomplished and smart people argue in such a way? It might be because patriotism calls up strong emotion and emotion clouds reason. That’s why dishonest politicians invoke patriotism so often. They can get away with murder when the public is all riled up unreasonably. That’s why we all have a duty as citizens to resist it.
        Happy Thanksgiving.

      • JTBarrett16

        It’s all deflections. To distract people from what happened with the flooding in Illinois and Wisconsin, Trump is riling everyone up by focusing on anthem protests and LaVar Ball.

      • Brad Lyerla

        We shouldn’t try to discuss politics on this site. Or over the internet. There is no restraint or sense of responsibility to facts or reason. Plus, most the guys are hiding behind avatars and don’t use their real name. The anonymity detracts from any sense that you are accountable for your words.
        I got off FB and twitter a while ago because of it. Here, I really just want to talk about baseball.

      • Good work once again, Brad.. pick a fight, preach, dismiss us as idiots, bro-out with Caps about high school (?), preach a bit more, and sidle off with some feigned honor.

      • Bro out with Caps – always a good plan when others are disagreeing with you because he doesn’t know whether you’re offending him or not.

      • Eddie Von White

        Yeah. Nailed it (as Doc would say).

      • Doc Raker

        I am not sure what you are referencing. If it is my comment about violence please note that was in response to your claim that we don’t react with violence when we politically disagree than you must not understand the point. The point is your statement is false, it is a statement of what you hope political discourse to be, what the law says it should be. The fact is we have plenty of political violence from the left. Antifa, BLM have encouraged and committed violent acts against political opponents. Lefty malcontents rioted in Berkley and other campuses because a conservative was going to give a speech there, a Congressman with an R next to his name was shot at a softball practice, police officers have been executed for no other reason than they were police officers. Sadly, violence from the left is rampant. I know CNN doesn’t tell you about it so maybe you aren’t up to speed on all the violence but when people march in the streets chanting, “what do we want, Dead Cops, when do we want it, Now,” I find your ‘no violence in political discourse’ naive, patently false and just a statement of hope, not a fact of reality.

        Those players taking a knee are political allies of the violent left. There is a place for protest but the employers are foolish to allow the protests on their time, in their place of business.

      • Brad Lyerla

        UnAmerican whether from the right or the left.

      • Doc Raker

        Completely agree. UnAmerican.

      • JTBarrett16

        How about the GOP celebrating people calling for the lynching of Obama, or promoting him with a Hitler mustache?

      • JTBarrett16

        If I took a knee in SD would you have whacked me? Regardless of whether or not my shirt is on

      • cap’n realist

        No…I don’t participate in violent acts against batch cookers. Plus, with all of the active duty military inside Petco, I doubt even Sandy would have had the balls to disrespect the anthem there.

      • JTBarrett16

        Glad to know I’m safe from your wrath

      • Sherm

        You’re also safe from being invited along next time. It’s our right not to tell you where we are going or when.

      • JTBarrett16

        I don’t protest during the anthem. I take off my hat and face the flag. But I will defend anyone’s right to protest. If you start banning certain forms of speech, you start a slippery slope. If you say you can’t say candidate A sucks, people who don’t like him will say, why are people allowed to say candidate B sucks?

      • Doc Raker

        You would of been scolded for sure.

      • JTBarrett16

        Did your kids do any sports at New Trier?

      • Brad Lyerla

        Both my daughters are very athletic. Nina was captain of the varsity volleyball team. Claire was a warrior in lacrosse. My son did club rugby. He decided not to try out for baseball, even though he had been on traveling baseball throughout his grade school/jr high years.
        My dad coached football and track at Niles North way back in the day.

      • JTBarrett16

        Awesome. I miss my high school swimming days. My junior year at New Trier during freshman conference, we ran through a fencing meet, and our coach flipped a shit at us. He called all of us into the locker room and lit into us. He was like this weekend was supposed to be about the freshman and now I’m going to have to spend it on the phone with the AD. There’s probably going to be suspensions and maybe people thrown off the team. One of my classmates who was on the fencing team told me we got off because her coach called the swim coach and AD and told them not to punish us because the whole fencing team thought it was hilarious.

      • Fascinating.

      • Brad Lyerla

        If you can’t get a little crazy in high school, then when can you?

      • JTBarrett16

        I don’t know. He was also mad at us for cheering 1-2-3 after we swept several races, and for chanting pulverize.

      • Sherm

        I vacillated on whether or not to jump in, but because you decided to include communion in your post, I decided to counter, especially because of the time of year it is right now. You wrote “It’s like communion. When they do it every service, it stops being miraculous.”

        Communion, defined, is really just the act of sharing. Taken in the context of the church, it means sharing in a common mean memorializing the life and death of Christ. I don’t want to delve into what people believe – I’m merely, to this point, stating those definitions for clarity.

        Communion is part of what is known as the Eucharist. The Eucharist is the entire ceremony (which contains the communion and commemorates the Last Supper.)

        The word “Eucharist” is a transliteration of the Greek word eucharistia, which is itself a translation of the Hebrew word berekah. All three words have the meaning of THANKSGIVING.

        Zig Ziglar once wrote the incredibly powerful words “I’ve never met a happy, ungrateful person.”

        To me, having grown up without much religion in life and making my own decisions as an adult? I find every Eucharist and communion miraculous. For me, the miracle is on the inside. It’s the miracle of gratitude – of being thankful for everything I have, every moment of every day, and when my gratitude gas gauge runs low? There is a spiritual filling station, for me, at the Eucharist.

        Part 2.

        You wrote: “It’s phony patriotism. All show and no sacrifice.” and “I just don’t like mindless patriotism. It interferes with clear thought and enables authoritarianism.”

        I find that offensive – here’s why. I have lost friends to war, who died defending this country. I know hundreds of servicemen and veterans who have sacrificed for our freedoms and creature comforts, so when you say All show and no sacrifice, Brad, I have to disagree. Much like the Eucharist, this is a memorial to those who HAVE sacrificed so that we can live free. For 3 minutes before sporting events is it really that difficult to respect those who have sacrificed? Is it mindless patriotism to be grateful to the veterans and the military and the generations before ours that molded the United States into the great country BASED on freedom that it is?

        I don’t hate your friend Sandy at all, but I feel sad for him and for you because I think you might be missing the point. If Sandy really and truly doesn’t think this country is worthy of having him stand for the anthem, then fine – sit down, Sandy. Those 50 or 60 patents wouldn’t belong to you if you had developed them in China, or many other places, pal, but whatever. Sit down. Taking a knee, however, is a direct and intentional “slap” in the other direction. It says “shove your anthem.” At least that’s what it says to me, and to many of my friends in the military, past and present.

      • I think you and I, as white people of significant privilege, can never begin to understand what marginalized young black men feel which would cause them to take a stand like this (no pun intended.) I’m more marginalized than you are, for more reasons than I care to share, and maybe because of that I can feel what they were intending to do even if it didn’t work. They are calling attention to something. Something you and I will never understand. So I feel instead of assuming a disrespect to the military, it might have been better to say as a country “wow, these people of color in our great country whose family and friends have made sacrifices just like I have and whose family and friends love their country just like I do, need some support on this issue and they are calling out for help” and take it from there. Instead it just gave white America a new drum to bang. That didn’t solve anything for anyone, and in hindsight they probably should have done it differently because now it’s just a shit show on both sides. But I can understand trying.

      • Sherm

        Agree…but only sorta.

        Knocking down one thing to prop up another doesn’t work.

        As a white male, do I have to wear a Black Lives Matter T-Shirt or can I simply do what I’ve ALWAYS done, which is treat everyone, regardless of color, with kindness and respect.

        Being a WPOSP (white person of significant privilege – you might be able to copyright that) doesn’t EXCLUDE me from the issues. I don’t know what it’s like to be a young black man in this country. I also don’t know what it’s like to be Chinese and live at the factory in which I work, or to be a woman, or a lot of other things. That doesn’t exclude me from caring or being capable of reasonable conversation about progress, or being outraged at injustice.

        These athletes have a platform to do some good – and aren’t choosing to use it, in my opinion.

      • JTBarrett16

        Maybe the NFL should look to the NBA for a clue. The NBA is 75% African-American just like the NFL, the NBA fan base is more anti-Trump than the NFL fan base, yet NBA players don’t protest during the anthem? Why? It’s not only because you have anti-Trump owners like San Antonio and Golden State, who back their anti-Trump coaches. This whole thing is out of control what Trump is doing. I don’t care if Joe Schmoe is mad about anthem protests. But while Trump is complaining about anthem protests, telling teams they’re not welcome at the White House because their players and coaches don’t like him, and getting into a pissing match with LaVar Ball, did anyone notice that Illinois was denied FEMA relief for the flooding this past summer, while Wisconsin got FEMA relief for the same floods? People should be mad about that, that’s he’s playing politics over natural disasters like this.

      • Seymour Butts

        When I remove my hat during the national anthem I have mixed feelings. First I feel lucky to have been born in this country. I too am a WPOSP. Some of which I have earned, some of which I was given simply by being born. What I am ambivalent on is “Am I proud to be an American”? Prideful people are off-putting.
        How does America treat those who are not like me, both at home and abroad? It is not consistently as I would want to be treated. This is the point of Kapernick, et al. It has nothing to do with disrespecting (probably my least favorite word) veterans.
        Take a clue from the overly pompous “leaders” who want the players who kneel to be crushed. If that is their feeling, it can’t be right. I will respect the kneelers even more.

      • JTBarrett16

        This. The problem with Trump is he’s butthurt because his football league in the 80’s failed, and his bid to buy the Buffalo Bills 3 years ago was denied.

      • JTBarrett16

        This is how I feel about what the players are doing. They’ve repeatedly said this isn’t about the military, and people who have served said this what they fought for. The problem is with society. They don’t care what anyone says. They want to shape it to fit their agenda. Similar to how people who were against Obama would spin anything he did, and people who are against Trump are doing (whether it’s justified or not). The biggest problem is our media, instead of reporting on news, they give us sensationalism, which sells. 20-25 years ago, everyday my mom and dad would be sitting at the table reading the New York Times and Chicago Tribune while drinking their morning tea. My dad told me today he still reads it, but he’s not reading it cover to cover like he used to because the quality has gone downhill.

      • Brad Lyerla

        Sherm, I am an old campaigner and I know when someone is trying to change the subject. But I want to stick with it.
        First, as I understand it, those who first began taking a knee were protesting police violence. Then they were joined by others who wanted to give solidarity because the backlash was brutal and they did not want the message relating to police misconduct to be squashed.
        Second, to the best of my knowledge, no one taking a knee is protesting against veterans.
        Third, respect for veterans is widely shared among Americans, probably even among many who are taking a knee.
        Fourth, but even if someone wanted to take a knee to protest veterans, that is allowed. This is America. No one is required to agree that veterans are good. That is the ultimate point.
        Fifth, showing protest in relation to the flag is an American thing. When you are pissed, dissing the flag is a way to communicate to other citizens that you are pissed.
        Sixth, dissing the flag is purely political activity. Our government is a limited government. It does not have the authority to regulate against dissing the flag — because we did not give it authority to regulate purely political activity.
        Finally, and again, no one taking a knee is even thinking about veterans. They are thinking about racism. Inserting veterans into the discussion is just a distraction.
        And in conclusion, it will be even worse next season when Raker is out there taking a knee every game until Len Kaspar is fired. And if anyone tries to slap Raker, he has to answer to me.
        Happy Thanksgiving.

        Brad

      • Sherm

        I learned as a child that if my actions or words hurt someone else’s feelings, even if well intended, I should consider thinking of a better way. What I’m saying is that with all the misunderstandings around the subject and hurt feelings, intended or not, they should find a better way.

        To your point? The original cause is lost in the shitshow.

      • Brad Lyerla

        It doesn’t have to be. Citizenship requires open-mindedness in a country like ours. It is the only country in human history that was created specifically to be diverse in religion and politics. We will never agree on everything because it was not meant that we should. So we have to learn (re-learn?) how to disagree without anger.

      • JTBarrett16

        Everything offends someone these days. I told a customer last month that his plan to drive a car home from NH without registering it first in MA was illegal because MA doesn’t recognize temporary insurance, and he got offended because I was ruining his plans. So trying to keep people out of jail is offensive?

      • [sandy kneels]
        [me, hatless for once, shakes head]
        [me, after anthem] for fucksake..
        [sandy eyes forward]
        [brad glares]
        [me, hat on this time] you can fuck yourself too
        [everyone, eyes forward]
        [baseball game happens, and a nice day is had by all]

  • Michael S.

    And the Cubs draw a day game to start the season. 11:30 Correct Daylight Time on March 29, 2018.

    Yeaaaaahhh, that’s the stuff. Now we just need firm dates for pitchers and catchers to report.

    • Doc Raker

      A Thursday. Opening game will be in Miami, it should be sunny with a high of about 80 degrees.

      • Michael S.

        Thanks, Siri!

      • JTBarrett16

        And the Marlins still won’t be able to sell tickets. I went to the Cubs-Marlins series in 2012, and got tickets to all 3 games for $5 each. Including one game where I was in a section that would scare Safety Sue (behind home plate)

      • Seymour Butts

        I’m doubting that you sat in the seat you paid for…for some reason.

  • Eddie Von White

    And Rick Monday hobbles off into the sunset.

    • Buddy

      I hope John Lackey doesn’t take a swing at him too!

      • Eddie Von White

        If he swings like he pitches, Monday will be safe.

    • Sherm

      Rick Monday was the asshole who started all this. If only he’d realized that he wasn’t invited to take that flag and spoil those boys right to diss the flag, everyone would be happy.

      • Eddie Von White

        Couldn’t have said it better myself.

  • Doc Raker

    If you own/owned a business would you allow your employees to offend your customers?

    • JTBarrett16

      Protesting the anthem is a lot different than telling a customer they’re stupid. How is an athlete protesting the anthem going to affect your life?

      • Doc Raker

        It is up to each employer to decide what guidelines they want their employees to follow. I don’t like politics in sports from either side. Since ratings are down and half the viewing audience is offended by the protests I would argue it is bad business to allow politics into the game

      • JTBarrett16

        Until 2009, NFL teams stayed in the locker room for the anthem. They started coming on the field for it because the DOD paid the NFL for it under the guise of patriotism.

      • Eddie Von White

        It’s now 2017. We do things differently.