Paul Sullivan writes a column in Monday’s sports section concerning Corey Patterson and the winter ball idea. I’d like to take this opportunity to let you know my thoughts as I read through the article.

Corey Patterson says he wants to return to the Cubs in 2006, and barring a change of mind, the Cubs are planning to give him that opportunity.

Contrary to popular belief, Corey Patterson is not a lost cause. He is slowly getting there, but he has not arrived at that point yet. With that being said, 2006 is his last shot at showing the talent his prospect scouting report talked about. Next year must be Corey’s bust out year. With Felix Pie on the horizon, it’s now or never for C-Pat. If Paul Sullivan is correct in this opening statement, I believe it’s a good decision on the part of the Tribune Co. to not trade Patterson this offseason.

The Cubs want to send Patterson to winter ball in December to work on his game, a plan to which Patterson has yet to agree. Patterson said he doesn’t feel pressure from management to play winter ball, despite repeated suggestions by manager Dusty Baker that he needs to do it for his own good.

What I don’t understand here is this. If the Cubs have asked Corey Patterson to play in winter ball, why does he feel that they aren’t serious about it? I would like to know what Corey would consider putting pressure on him. Perhaps it would involve Dusty holding him down and twisting his thumb back until he cries for mercy. No matter what, all the Cubs should have to do for Corey to know they’re serious is ask him. It should take no more than that.

If Patterson doesn’t go to winter ball, would he be sending the wrong message to the organization?

“It’s his career,” Baker said Monday. “It ain’t my career.”

Gotta love Dusty Baker chiming in with his village idiot comments. Why doesn’t he just come out and say that he doesn’t like Patterson and that he wants out of this ballclub?

My Conclusion
This is probably not the most popular opinion, but it’s one I am sticking to. I believe that Corey Patterson should NOT go to winterball. He’s had a terrible year. Sometimes something like winterball would help. However, this year, Corey needs to take a break from baseball. He should clear his head and come back fresh to impress. He’ll be pushed in spring training next year by Felix so he needs to be rested and ready to shine in 2006.

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Joe Aiello is the founder of View From the Bleachers and one of the lead writers as well as host of VFTB Radio. Growing up in Chicago, he fondly remembers attending games in the bleachers before that was the popular thing to do. Currently Joe resides in North Carolina with his wife and three kids. Connect with Joe via Twitter / Facebook / E-mail