Archive for June, 2006

Make it five in a row

Tuesday, June 27th, 2006

So what should we do, trade the whole team? This isn’t a “team,” it’s a grouping of players. True, the manager doesn’t pitch and he doesn’t catch, throw or hit. But what do you do when you have a systemnic breakdown? What do you do when your manager continuously makes bad lineup choices, when he can’t inspire the team or teach them to play fundamental baseball? What do you do when you have a hitting coach that knows nothing about hitting or a pitching coach that doesn’t know the first thing about pitching? What about a GM who has one good year and then takes his team (including the minors) on to failure?

This Cubs team will find a way to lose games. Besides firing MacFail, Hendry and Baker, Gene Clines and Larry Rothschild need to get the heave-ho too. The sooner the better; Hendry today gave Dusty his usual vote of confidence and I’m sure that Andy would give his if asked. The Cubs are now on pace for a .368 winning percentage – the worst Cubs team ever earned a .364. We are witnessing history.

Dusty-o-Meter: 86 games left
Hendry-o-Meter: 410 games left

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Cubs Quiz

Tuesday, June 27th, 2006

Instead of actually writing something constructive about the Cubs, I’ve decided instead to give our readers this quiz to take.
Each answer has a point value:
A – 0 points
B – 1 points
C – 2 points
D – 3 points
E – 4 points

1. Cubs fans are:
A – extremely loyal
B – extremely drunk
C – getting fed up
D – apathetic
E – part of the problem

2. Jacque Jones is:
A – a steal!
B – a .300 hitter
C – the only option for right field
D – there’s still a chance he can be traded, right?
E – par for the course

3. Matt Murton:
A – should be benched
B – should be platooned
C – has red hair
D – needs at-bats
E – won’t be here next year

4. Neifi Perez is:
A – a number 2 hitter
B – a gold glove defender
C – a decent bench player
D – taking up a valuable roster spot
E – blackmailing Dusty Baker

5. Jim Hendry’s contract extension was:
A – a good move
B – a necessary evil
C – possibly premature
D – a big mistake
E – highway robbery

6. In 2007, the Cubs will be managed by:
A – Dusty Baker
B – Joe Girardi
C – Bob Brenly
D – somebody new
E – the college of coaches

7. Carlos Zambrano:
A – needs to control his emotions
B – needs to let his emotions control him
C – will toss a 163 pitch no-hitter
D – is the only thing worth watching on this team
E – is the 6th best hitter on the team

8. Derrek Lee’s wrist injury:
A – definitely cost us the Pennant
B – probably cost us the Division
C – may have cost us the Wild Card
D – cost us two extra weeks of contending baseball
E – probably hasn’t healed correctly

9. The Phil Nevin trade:
A – was a stroke of genius
B – didn’t cost anything
C – was about 6 weeks too late
D – will cost Matt Murton his job
E – Phil Nevin is still in the league?

10. The 2006 Chicago Cubs need to:
A – look to the 2005 Houston Astros for inspiration
B – get everyone back healthy
C – trade for a superstar player
D – blow up the team – trade everybody
E – blow up the team – collect the insurance money


40 – 31 points: You are the angriest Cub fan possible. You’re angry at everyone from Andy McPhail to the fans that continue to attend games. Heads need to roll, and fans need to stay away.

30 – 21 points: The team stinks, and you know it. If somebody offered you a free ticket, and you had nothing better to do, you’d still go a game and heckle every Cub player or coach that got within earshot.

20 – 11 points: You know the team is bad, but you still love the Cubs too much to go cold turkey. You still find yourself shouting at the TV when Dusty Baker makes another tactical blunder, despite the fact that it means nothing.

10 – 5 points: You are still kidding yourself if you think this team has any hope. Please, seek help.

5 – 0 points: You are one of the following: Andy McPhail, Jim Hendry, Dusty Baker.

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Radio Show Archive

Tuesday, June 27th, 2006

On Sunday I was a guest on Sports Talk Cleveland for about 25 minutes. I have clipped the appearance and have posted on the site for your listening. The topics covered in the clip are:

1) What’s wrong with the Indians?
2) Why I’m blogging for the Devil Rays now
3) Have the White Sox taken over the city of Chicago?
4) Kerry Wood’s future?
5) Mark Prior’s progress and future?
6) Maddux trade winds
7) Is the slide blamed on Derrek Lee?
8) Blockbuster trade prediction
9) Closing thoughts

Listen to the MP3

Enjoy and feel free to use the comment section to let me know your thoughts on what was said.

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Why do we suck?

Monday, June 26th, 2006

Comparing the boxes of the starters for both teams provides just one one facet of a million-faceted gem that is the Crown Jewel of the Cubbies’ 2006 Crown of Thorns.

Batting averages of starting Brewers vs. starting Cubs:

.286 .248
.270 .241
.263 .327
.274 .249
.290 .230
.261 .277
.263 .290
.263 .226

ERA of appearing pitchers:

3.10 4.94
3.51 5.89
n/a 4.46
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New Cubs slide hits four

Monday, June 26th, 2006

Today’s Tribune featured an article by Paul Sullivan which implied that Dusty had to “start winning now or face the possibility of losing his job.” The Cubs have won two of their last thirteen and are now on pace for a 60-102 season; during the last 27 innings they have scored just 1 run. It’s the timidity of this organization that concerns me the most; the decision-makers seem paralysed by the team’s predicament. It’s as though they are at a total loss as to what to do, they are on pace to commandeer the second-worst team in the history of a 131 year-old franchise and nothing is happening. Today’s game also resulted in the team’s eighth-straight home loss, the Cubs have also been swept twice consecutively at home. The club is presently 19 games below .500.

So that’s the bad news. The good news is that every loss now makes it more likely that the Dunce of Wrigley will be jettisoned soon. Hopefully Brenly will come down from the booth to lay down the law; I think he’ll turn this team around very quickly. He’ll also set some guys like Ramirez and Pierre straight – Aramis has totally let the team down this year with his lax production and I’d love to see him sent somewhere in a trade that involved a top 3B prospect such as Andy Marte or Shelly Duncan. When you look at Ramirez’ production the last few years it’s been decent but injuries or relaxed play always prevent him from being a superstar. “Hustle” is not this guy’s middle name. Now would be an excellent time for a blockbuster trade or two, what do we have to lose? This team needs new chemistry.

Dusty-o-Meter: 87 games left
Hendry-o-Meter: 411 games left

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