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Hey, Soriano! Who you crappin?

Thursday, July 9th, 2009

Slumping left fielder Alfonso Soriano sat for the third time in eight games Wednesday and isn’t happy about it. When manager Lou Piniella spoke to Soriano last week in Pittsburgh and told him he would be giving him a few more days off, Soriano said he understood. But Soriano was miffed when he learned his name wasn’t in the starting lineup Wednesday after he had a pair of hits Tuesday night. “That’s why I’m mad,” Soriano said. “If he had told me yesterday, then I wouldn’t come today ready to play.”

Chicago Tribune

Um, Aldolpho….you haven’t been ready to play all year. Who you crappin?

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Dear Mr. Hendry

Wednesday, July 1st, 2009

Dr. Mr. Hendry,

Hello Mr. Hendry. I wanted to write to you because I think I’ve created poop that didn’t stink as much as this Cubs team.

When a team gets 97 wins, why would you tinker with as much as you did? Are you listening to Coach Piniella? You shouldn’t. He’s a grumpy old man, waiting to retire. My Dad says guys that old are just skating by, doing the bare minimum, and collect their pay checks.

My Mommy is very upset you got rid of Mark DeRosa. She says there’s no one as pretty as him on the team anymore. Maybe we need another pretty player?

I can’t write anymore. This team makes my eyes bleed, which makes it difficult to write.


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Dear Mr. Bradley

Thursday, June 11th, 2009

Dear Mr. Bradley,

I am a hugemungous Cub fan. I was very excited to see you become a Cub, because my Daddy says you can hit the ball very goodly. For some reason he keeps saying many bad words when you are up to bat now. I guess you are not doing very good when you swing. That makes me sad.

I like to see many home runs, and you are supposed to be doing that! You should be hitting a million billion home runs each day, and scoring 17,000 runs. What is wrong with you? Are you hurt? My Dad says you are made of popsicle sticks and bubble gum. Maybe you need some strong tape instead. Or crazy glue!

The other night I saw you break your baseball bat. You seemed very angry. Jedi Master Yoda says that anger leads to the Dark Side. I don’t want you to be like Darth Vader. I bet he could hit a baseball with his lightsaber! Maybe you should get a light saber, and then you can hit lots and lots of home runs!

Thank you for being a Cub Mr. Bradley. I hope you get playing better soon, because my Dad needs some soap for his mouth.


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Kool Aid is Spelled M I L T ON

Tuesday, April 21st, 2009

Since this seems to be a reoccuring argument, and capnobvious took Dave and I to task, let’s outline my love for Milton flavored Kool Aid.

April 1999: While playing for Montreal’s Double-A affiliate at Harrisburg, Pa., he was suspended for seven games for spitting gum at an umpire after being ejected. The ejection came for charging the mound after being hit by a pitch.

  • OK, here’s one I can’t defend. Except he was young, and stupid. It happens.
  • April 2002: As a member of the Cleveland Indians, Bradley was removed from a Cleveland restaurant after he refused to leave. According to the EMS report, he was “severely intoxicated.”

  • Yeah, you’re using an off the field issue to support your argument. Anyone of us could be removed from a restaurant for “intoxification.” I’m betting a few have too.
  • April 1, 2004: Indians manager Eric Wedge determined Bradley failed to run out a pop-up that fell for a single during an exhibition game and removed Bradley from the game. Four days later, Bradley was traded to the Los Angeles Dodgers.

  • OK, so we’ll use this argument, while at the same time A-Ram and Soriano do the same thing. I wonder what would happen if Lou pulled them?
  • June 1, 2004: Bradley dumped a bag of baseballs near third base, delaying the game, soon after being ejected.

  • Hasn’t this happened hundreds of times, with hundreds of other players? What’s the difference?
  • Sept. 28, 2004: Bradley, playing right field at Dodger Stadium, responded to a fan who threw a bottle in his direction by walking over the stands and slam-dunking the bottle back. He was ejected and removed his jersey on his way off the field.

  • By happenchance, I was actually at this game. I can’t defend his over the top antics, but didn’t we just see a manager pull his entire team off the field when the crowd started throwing things?I’m not saying his actions afterwards were acceptable, but when you’ve got things being thrown at you while trying to do your job, I’d get a bit pissed off too.
  • Oct. 6, 2004: Bradley called Los Angeles Times writer Jason Reid, who is a black, an “Uncle Tom” after Game 1 of the Dodgers-St. Louis Cardinals Division Series in St. Louis.

  • Carl Everett says dinosaurs didn’t exist. People say and do dumb things all the time. Browse these posts. You’ll see.
  • December 2004: Bradley served three days in an Ohio jail for what his agent said was the resolution of two traffic-related incidents. In one, Bradley was charged with refusing to sign a speeding ticket and then driving away. In the other, he pleaded guilty to yelling at a police officer.

  • Again, off the field stuff. I don’t get why everyone makes a big deal out of it. Let’s concentrate on his performance on the field.
  • June 28-July 30, 2005: According to municipal records in Redondo Beach, Calif., police were called to Bradley’s home three times to respond to complaints of domestic violence. He wasn’t arrested.

  • No arrests. Which means no probable cause. Which means no evidence such things were occuring. Next please.
  • Aug. 20, 2005: Bradley and Dodgers teammate Jeff Kent got into heated exchange during a game after Kent accused Bradley of not hustling. Bradley said Kent, who had issues with Barry Bonds when both played for the San Francisco Giants, has difficulty dealing with black players.

  • It’s well know Jeff Kent was an hot head himself, who did have issues with black players. What’s the point?
  • Sept. 23, 2007: As a member of the San Diego Padres, Bradley was lost for the last week of the season when he suffered a knee injury following a confrontation with first base umpire Mike Winters that resulted in Bradley being ejected. Bradley was hurt when Padres manager Bud Black wrestled him to the ground during Bradley’s argument with Winters. Major League Baseball later confirmed Winters used profane language during the argument and suspended him for the rest of the regular season and the post-season.

  • So he’s called out, and the ump uses profane language, which is confirmed by the MLB. There happens to be a freak accident that blows his knee out. How does this matter?
  • AND booted from his first Wrigley Field appearance in a Cub uniform AND suspended for THAT temper tantrum.

  • After that call, I’d have done the same. It was terrible. Sometimes, like a Technical Foul in basketball, something needs to be said or done to get the team motivated. I don’t see D-Lee, Soraino, or A-Ram, doing it. It might as well be someone. This team needs a little fire. Unless, you consider beating a water pipe to death after you’re eliminated “fiery.”
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    Holy Macaroni! 5-2!!!!

    Tuesday, April 14th, 2009

    Over the last week, I’ve sat back and read most of the posts and comments.  Chiming in with my usual blather of sensical talk.  Or at least what I perceive to be sensical talk.  I’m beside myself in the daily garble of Chicken Little “the sky is falling” talk. Seven days into the season, and the world is coming to an end.

    It appears that this year being calm, cool and collect, is not in the Cub fan’s dictionary.  Raggin’ on D-Lee because he’s hitting under .100, Milton Bradley hurt himself, Geovany has played two games, Aramis has a sore back, Piniella has no idea how to manage.  The list goes on and on.  Seven days, sigh…….I’m not sure I can take six months of this.

    In seven games, the are 5-2.  FIVE AND TWO!!!!

    And that’s with all of the issues stated above.  Bradley’s out, Geovany is out, D-Lee is hitting (or lack of hitting) like a he’s got a tuna in his hands, the bullpen has been less than spectacular (May I clean those goggles Mr. Gregg?), and yet…….they’re FIVE AND TWO!!!! Wait Until Dark

    The Cubs lost a game they should have won, and won a game they should have lost.  By my math that would put their record somewhere around…hmmmm, let me figure this out…….carry the one………FIVE AND TWO!!!!

    Serenity now.

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    Contrary to Popular Belief, I am not an A-Hole

    Friday, March 27th, 2009

    Those of us that have been following the comments in Sherm’s latest post know that it’s gotten into a heated battle about autograph hounds.  Those that haven’t read it should, or read this Cliff Notes version:

    A Father and his son were at Spring Training.  The morning before their flight they headed over to Cubs camp just to see what was going on.  Carlos Zambrano, was out riding a bike, and the son approached him with a jersy to sign.  Carlos rode past them without acknowledgement. 

    Classy move? Definitely not. Acceptable? Absolutely. I don’t see anywhere in any of these players contracts that state they must sign autographs at whatever time someone deems appropriate.  Carlos was at an early morning workout, and most likely didn’t expect an autograph hound.  I certainly wouldn’t.  Nor would I want to be approached at that time in the morning. 

    I was raised with the idea that these professional athletes are people.  People with personal lives, that most of the time they’d like to have.  I distinctly remember eating at Chi-Chi’s on Lake Cook Road, shortly after Superbowl XX, and Mike Singeltary walked in with his wife. I was beside myself, Samarai Mike was eating at the table across from us.  I asked my Dad if we could say hello, and he told my sister and I, “No. Let him eat dinner with his wife. This is not the time to bother him.” Within minutes a man and his son walked up and asked Mike for a autograph.  His response? “Please. I’m trying to have a quiet dinner with my wife. If you must have one, wait for me in the lobby.” It struck a chord with me, and I’ve been respectful of athletes and their personal space ever since.

    I’ve been pretty blessed with one on one encounters with pro athletes. I’ve hung around many Bulls players during their hayday while sipping coffee at Barnes and Noble. I personally attended to Phil Jackson while he shopped for hobby gifts for his sons. For a few years, I followed my friend to a local restaurant where WWE wrestlers hung out after shows. Same thing, we would wait around and just watch. Many times they’d start to talk to us. Partially because they recognized my buddy for the years he’d been doing the same ritual. The only autographs I’ve ever asked for, was Mickey Morandini, and that was at the post 9-11 game where that was why he was there. And the fact that everywhere I go Mickey seems to be there, so it turned into a running joke with a friend of mine. I’ve never understood the excitement over obtaining autographs. Maybe I’m missing something. Or maybe, I know how much I like my personal space, so I let them have theirs.

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    Pessimism? I'll show you pessimism!

    Friday, March 6th, 2009

    As I stepped outside this morning and was hit in the face with almost warm weather, my nostrils got a quick wiff of what’s just around the corner.  A rotting pumpkin on my neighbor’s stoop.  Seriously. 

    But I digress, last night I sat and watched about three full innings of baseball.  I’m not saying it was Cubs or Saox baseball because after about that inning, I don’t have any idea who the heck most of the guys are on the field.  For all I know it’s the local pub sponsored softball team.  I basically listened to the annual Len and Bob interview of Lou, and the “State of the Cubs.” It’s the one reason I like Lou.  He doesn’t mince words. He told us the good, the bad, you take them both and there you have.  The facts of life.  Lou is our Ms. Garrett.  That’s right, I’m comparing him to Charlotte Rae.  Laugh now, but you know you see a resemblance. 

    He keeps the “kids” in line, tells it how it is, the good side of the team, and the minuses.  And trust me kid-os, there are more minuses this year than last.  As Lou put it, the team that won the Central Division had a 20% turnover.  That’s some scary stuff. 

    Speaking of scary, and I don’t mean a Milton Bradley meltdown, check out this abomination of a bullpen. The void between a three inning Zambrano catastrophe and trying to get to Marmol or Gregg, is wider than Louie Anderson’s waistline. Where’s the beef? It certainly isn’t hanging out down the third base line this year.

    Then we have that Centerfield mess. Yeah, yeah, yeah. Fukudome is going to make a miraculous turnaround.  That’s about as likely as you finding me at Britney Spears concert, who by the way I hear is looking spectacular.  Not that I would know. Do us a favor and just play Reed “Daughtry” Johnson. I like my outfielders scrappy. And not Theriot scrappy. Although, we’ve got a short dude thing going on this year don’t we?

    Honestly, we’re a Bradley hat throwing, Big Z forearm tightening, Soraino calve cramp away from blowing this thing.  I can feel it.  Just you wait.

    Then again, I’ve been wrong before.  Just not when it comes to the Cubs.

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    One Heck of a Year

    Monday, October 13th, 2008

    As many of you know, I still play baseball. In fact, Jose and I play in the same league, on a National level.

    This year, was nothing like the Cubs’ year, as our mighty Lobos struggled through the regular season, myself included. We managed to win our play-in game to get into the playoffs, and then things started clicking. Of course, it always helps when your four pitchers show up each and every game. We went the full three games (each series is a best of three) in the semi finals, beating a strong offensive Diamondbacks team, and reached the Finals, last Friday. Things looked bleak when we went down by five runs in Game One, but we managed two comebacks, and won it late. Yesterday was a doubleheader, in which we were shorthanded, and just didn’t have the arms, and some seriously untimely defense. Much like the Cubs showing in the NLDS.

    Although we lost, and my body is truly pissed at me today, it was one of the most exciting years we’ve had. Before this season, the Lobos had never won a playoff game. This year we won four, just not that one game that we needed in the final day.

    I just want to thank the guys for yet another memorable season, and tip my hat to the Devils, which is becoming quite the little rivalry. As we’re all used to saying around these parts, “Wait til next year!”Black Dawn hd

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    Let It Roll or Matt's Crazy Off Season Plan

    Wednesday, October 8th, 2008

    The Chicago Tribune had a poll up Sunday asking which Cubs collapse broke your heart the most. Honestly, I’d have to rank it, and this is only in my lifetime, the 2003 team, the 1984 team, and then this 2008 team. After the 2003 meltdown, I was literally numb for about two weeks. Mountain Dew wasn’t as sweet, Snickers bars weren’t as nougaty, and Old Style still tasted like crap. I believe when, or should I say if, the Cubs win the whole shabang, Old Style will be as fine as a vintage champagne. Yeah, who am I kidding. I didn’t even watch Game 3 on Saturday evening. I was done, the Cubs were done, and to listen to Dick Stockton one more evening would of driven me to the heights of insanity. I had lost my heart in Cubs baseball, all in a matter of four days.

     When Joe asked about each of us doing a “what do they do for next year” post, I actually had no ideas. On paper, and for most of the season, I saw nothing glaringly wrong with the team as it was. They needed a centerfielder, Jim Hendry grabbed Reed Johnson, and later Jim Edmonds. A starter to help fend off the Brewers, he traded for Rich Harden. What else could you ask for? Maybe a little bullpen help, but most of the time they were fine. Do you really make a major change with a team that just won back to back NL Central titles? I don’t think so, much to the chagrin of all some of you that want major changes. My bigger gripe about the team’s failure in the post season. Management. Why in god’s name did Lou reinsert Kosuke Fukudome into the lineup? Better yet, why did he bat him second? Why would you mess with a lineup that you’ve stuck with almost the whole year, and change it for the biggest series of the year? Blame the offense all you want, I blame Lou just as much. He tinkered when it wasn’t necessary.

    Here’s my realistic ideas:

    • Re-sign Reed Johnson. Platoon him with Pie in centerfield.
    • Make Mark DeRosa your everyday right fielder. Put Mike Fontenot in as your second baseman. You’ll get two good bats in the lineup, and a lefty which is sorely needed in the right handed heavy Cubs lineup. You lose some defense in right, but after this year, they need to reward Mark with an everyday position, not as a super sub. If necessary, go sign a Felipe Lopez, utility type player to fill the super sub role.
    • Kosuke Fukudome heads to Iowa to learn American styled hitting and pitching. The Mets did it with Kaz Matsui, maybe it’s Kosuke’s time. He’s in Lou’s doghouse as it is, I don’t see this ending well, any way you slice it.
    • Micah Hoffpauir becomes the pinch hitter. He’s no worse defensively than Ward. And cheaper.
    • Re-sign Dempster and Wood. With the NLDS loss, they may take a hit in salary to see if they can get the job done, like they should have this year.
    • Sign Jeremy Affledt to strenghten up the middle relief, and give Lou another lefty in the pen. 
    • Resign Hank White. He’s a great mentor to Geo, and is one of the few people that can probably keep Zambrano under control.

    And of course, some pie in the sky ideas:

    • Don’t resign Dempster. Make a serious run at CC Sabathia. Heck, sign Dempster, then go get Sabathia. Get us a dominating scary #1 pitcher.
    • Go balls out, and sign Manny Ramirez. Move Soriano to right field. Again, Fukudome gets to check out the cornfields of Iowa for awhile.

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    • Trade for Robinson Cano.  The Yankees are looking for pitching and a centerfielder. We seem to have both of those. If you trade Pie, you resign Edmonds. I think a full Spring Training will benefit him. He became a clubhouse leader, from what I’ve been told, the day he arrived.

    I’ll be honest. I’d be very happy to see the same team next year, with a tweak or two. Hendry’s close, and I think this team is going to be hungry next year. Really hungry. Not to mention, the free agent crop is below average, and most of them are past their twilight years. I’m not sure it’d be worth the risk. Of course, I see a nice young power pitching right hander is available. Mark Prior anyone?

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