View From The Bleachers

Talking Cubs Baseball Since 2003



September 2009



Jake who?

Written by , Posted in General

Well it’s nice to be back in Guitar Town, the Cubs are now officially out of the race but I got to see them play twice in AT&T Park in San Francisco, it’s always nice to see the Cubs play in person. It was especially interesting to hear the boo birds in somebody else’s park – at one point SF was closing on the Rockies but the Cubs effectively knocked them out of playoff contention. Sorry Giants fans but that’s paybacks for 1989.

AT&T is a nice venue to see a ballgame from – you even get the fog for free. We flew in on Tuesday and stayed at the Grosvenor on Knob Hill. If you are planning to visit San Francisco sometime be forewarned – the “hills” have very steep inclines and it is sometimes necessary to use public transportation to go two blocks as a consequence. From our hotel we could watch the fog roll in across the bay and by night time it was misty with low visibility. In the ballpark one could see the fog roiling above the playing field and seagulls were cruising in and out of the stadium, one can only imagine the distraction that that might present to an outfielder. I saw two superb pitching performances by Ryan Dempster (who has to be considered for Player of the Month in September) and Carlos Zambrano – Z went out and whupped Lincecum and Randy Johnson came in for a spot appearance. We sat right in front of the Giants’ bullpen so it was neat seeing a future Hall of Famer get warmed up and do his thing.

I still can’t understand why Piniella is starting Bobby Scales in the outfield and benching Fox. Granted, the guy has made two errors at first base and he’s not going to win any Golden Gloves, but how is going to improve his defensive skills warming the bench? I’m wondering what Fox said to tick the Cubs manager off – perhaps Piniella sees Scales as the next super-sub in the outfield but I can’t understand why. I don’t dislike Bobby but in my opinion the Cubs have a difficult decision to make insofar as Fox and Hoffpaiur, I don’t think there will be room on the 2010 bench for both.

  • Seymour Butts

    Since comments are few and far between, I’ll drone on about AT&T park(PAcbell, or whatever). My daughter and I caught a 3game set there a few years ago, the Cubs dropped Friday and Sundays game, but Saturday was the day Greg Maddux won his 300th. We sat in the bleachers and struck up a conversation with a couple the turned out to be D Lee’s aunt and uncle. we exchanged business cards, but I’ve had no reason to write him. I did not like the park as much as other newer parks as the grand stands go straight up, I guess an homage to the polo grounds. That was a trip planned later than most I take, so I bought the tickets on stub hub and paid a bundle for good seats Friday and Sunday. Friday we were 2 seats removed from Dusty’s parents. My Daughter talks to everyone and chatted with Dusty’s brother most of the game. Met Shawon Dunston that night as well. The memorable part of that game for me was Moises Alou hitting a ground rule double to center. All the cub fans stood and cheered. His wife, son and daughter were 5 rows in front of us and sat practically motionless.
    Sundays game was to be the real treat. Front row, 5 seats to the outfield side of the Cubs dugout. If there weren’t a huge camera well, it would have been awesome, but we still were able to look down the Cubs bench. ESPN changed this from a day to a night game 1 week before the game, so it ended up costing me about $759 extra for an additional night in the hotel and new plane tickets as the first airline had no available seats until Tuesday.
    The hotel we stayed in was 7 blocks away in a straight line and as Mark mentioned, at a steep angle. We walked it anyway.
    So anyone else been there?

  • I was at the Maddux 300th game also, my only time at the new park in SF. It was a beautiful August day so the sun was out and it was very comfortable. We had a few drinks across the street at Momos and walked around the park. We saw Kerry Wood and a few others pull up in taxi’s into the park. All these new parks have a bit of a Wrigley feel to them with no parking lot, just a lot of foot traffick and entertainment going on around the park.

    As far as Jake Fox goes, since you haven’t been around you should know that the Cubs are going to give Jake a look at playing 2b. He should be playing 2b in winterball somewhere. You can catch up on the Jake Fox has range at 2b conversation on Lizzie’s most recent post. Lot’s of fun.

  • Mark Strickler

    Jake Fox playing second base? What idiocy, that’s like asking Aramis Ramirez to pitch. I’m sorry, if the Cubs are considering that they are destined to have 150 years without a championship. I can’t believe Jim Hendry is that stupid but who knows?

  • MJ

    I do want to go to AT&T and see a game. I think I can convince the wife, if I include some time in Napa. 😉

    Fog is pretty interesting to play in. At Oakton Community College, I’ve played in quite a few games where fog rolls in off the Des Plaines River right onto the field. It’s odd not being able to see the outfielder next to you. It’s also the field I had a bat (not of the wooden kind) fly into my head! It’s dangerous out there!

    I’m headed to the game on Saturday. It won’t be for anything, but it’ll be a nice send off for a lost season, although when was the last time the Cubs had three winning seasons in a row? To that, I’m happy. They’re at least moving in the right direction.

  • While I have made it pretty clear that I am not a Jake Fox fan, and don’t believe that the Cubs really have a place for him, I too am baffled about why both he and Hoffpauir have received so little playing time in recent weeks.

    Both have some trade potential, especially if they show that they can play the corner outfield positions. Bobby Scales, on the other hand, has zero potential for anything.

    And Fox/Hoff’s lack of defense can’t really be the issue, considering the fact that Scales may be even worse than those two in the outfield.

  • cubbiedude

    China Basin, where AT&T park now stands, used to contain a shipyard or two. And it was my job to treat patients from the ships while they were there.

    So, while I haven’t yet been to At&T Park, I have, in a sense, been “there”.

    At that time we were living in San Francisco Bay on Yerba Buena Island, so I saw lots of fog roll in. Great town, San Francisco.

    As far as the Scales, Fox and Hoffpauir thing: “The Lord works in mysterious ways.”

  • Since the post season has already begun for me I haven’t seen many innings lately, Jake Fox’s game winning HR in St Louis was probably my last viewing of a Cubs game but I would have to agree that if they aren’t playing Fox or Hoffa at least for trade value I am surpised.

    Or maybe the Cubs like their trade value as it is and do not want to expose their holes any further, or maybe Fox is busy taking 250 ground balls at 2b everyday and is too tired to play.