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Monday, June 15th, 2009

Mark DeRosa is currently hitting .277 with 11 home runs and 44 rbis. Milton Bradley is currently hitting .227 with 5 homers and 15 rbis.

DeRosa, admittedly, has more at bats. That’s because he’s healthier and we know he’ll play hurt. DeRosa has a slightly higher OBP (.347 to .335) and a higher slugging percentage (.459 to .383)

All of that said — who do you think will end up with better numbers when this year is over? Do you Bradley fans think that he’ll pick it up and end up with a higher average and more homers than DeRosa? It’ll be tough to catch up to the rbi count…but do you think he will?

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Undefeated in the Von Joshua era

Sunday, June 14th, 2009

I only saw one inning today…the ninth. Pretty good timing, I suppose.

Nice to see Lee hit the ball hard and get the rally started. I have to give him credit as he’s been taking his game up a notch in the face of adversity (adversity = crappy offense by the team as a whole.)

Nice to see Soto hitting — and loved the aggressive baserunning by Lee to get into third base. And Soto’s smarts to move to second on the play. I don’t agree with Brenly that Lee went because he saw the outfielder was deep…I think he went because the third baseman was on the ground after a diving attempt. Whatever. We’re in a team slump and I’d rather see them being aggressive. You don’t passively turn things around.

Best of all? The celebration after the game. Nice to see the team jumping around. These are the kinds of games that teams look back to and point and say “that game changed things.” I hope so in this case.

Plus, we have a new batting coach and that makes me happy. All in all a good day.

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Breaking News

Friday, June 5th, 2009

This just in from the Cubs training department. The GatorAde cooler is not finished for the season! In fact, it’s not even going on the DL. It is listed day to day with a “bashed plasticula” and may see action as early as Wednesday. Lou says that the team will just go with a short “refreshing beverage bench” for a couple of days, and that water cooler will do his best to pick up the slack.  “Look,” said Lou, “it may even be ready before Milton.”

Lou then burped, giggled and took the team to Home Town Buffet…the new “Eatery of the Cubs” in what appears to be a cost cutting move since Lou, Rothschild and Perry get the senior discount and Theriot, Fontenot and Quade can wear shorts and take advantage of the “Kids eat Free” policy.Reign Over Me trailer

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Barking Mad

Wednesday, June 3rd, 2009

1. Learn to flippin’ bunt. Could any team be fundamentally worse at this incredibly basic baseball strategy? I don’t think so. Way to go.

2. Milkit Badly — part THREE: I suggest that when (if) Milky takes the field from now on, the loud speakers play “China Doll.” You can have this guy. I think he was a bad signing. Sample size or not, one third of the way into the season and he stinks. The stats support it. So far. (I added “so far” for you, Dave. I’m trying.)

3. How in the world do the Braves get Nate McLouth for three minor league pitchers? I said last summer that we should have gone after him — INSTEAD OF THE MILKSTER

4. Not a rant, but imagine McLouth in center and Adam Dunn in right.

5. Another game that we deserve to lose tonight. Can’t bunt. Had to go with Lilly because the bullpen can’t be trusted. Had to let Lilly bat in the seventh with a runner in scoring position because who’s going to pitch? Right? Good call, Lou. Now everyone is pitching anyway…

6. Fire Gerald Perry already. Just do it. Right now. Hurry up. I’ll wait.

I wasn’t going to post here anymore, but I got pissed off and forgot. This team makes me crazy.

Sherm

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Hartsfield Ramblings

Saturday, May 2nd, 2009

I’m sitting in an airport with little else to do.

The Lollipop Guild has more homers than the big corners (Lee and ARam) at this point. 6 – 5.

Lee and Theriot are tied with 2 homers each. In fact, Lee realized that today when Theriot homered for the second straight game (I think Mattingly’s 8 game streak is safe) and he promptly homered in the fourth to save face.

Batting Carlos Zambrano in a 6 – 1 game. Agree or disagree? I disagree — what happens if he gets hit on the hand during one of these meaningless at bats and misses months? I’m sure it’s fun for Carlos, but I think it is kind of careless. There are times to do it, sure, but today in the eighth inning wasn’t one of them.

Ted Lilly is a quality pitcher, and without any of the fanfare is our real ace of the staff. Has been now for some time. I hope that Sean Marshall watches him closely and learns from him.

Umm…just saying, but Adam Dunn hit his seventh today. Now has 18 rbis, 23 walks and a .460 obp.

That’s all for now. I’ve got to go pay $14 for a hot dog and bottled water.

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Observations

Saturday, April 25th, 2009

I didn’t see the game — for whatever reason it wasn’t showing on the plane; but when I landed I checked my phone and saw that we had a runner on third with one out in the eighth of a 3 -3 game and I thought “great — we should go up 4 – 3.” By the time I got to my car, Pujols had stolen second and was being singled home. It was 4 – 3 alright, but not in our favor. For some reason, I thought of a great Tommy LaSorda line from the past…when asked after a game what he thought of his team’s execution, he responded “I’m in favor of it.”

That’s not the topic of this post, which doesn’t really have a set topic, but 1.) not scoring in those situations hurts, and 2.) Pujols stealing? Come on. But I didn’t see it…so whatever…

Here’s my thought for the day:

Aaron Heilman is doing a great job. But I don’t think he should be a one inning everyday pitcher. The guy is a starter by definition — live arm and more than two pitches in his repertoire — so if he’s not starting for us, at least use him for what he is best suited. Why not let him go two or three innings twice a week? I am not saying that this is why we lost last night — who could know that Marmol wouldn’t get it done? I’m saying that if the game goes thirteen innings, who pitches? No one would be left in the bullpen in whom we can have any confidence. If Heilman pitches the seventh (as he did) and let’s say the eighth and ninth — even if both teams are still scoreless — he gives the Cubs a chance to take the lead and let Gregg or Marmol try to save it. This pitcher an inning thing is becoming a trend that could and will bite us in extras. I think Heilman once through any order is a decent bet — why not use him that way? The same could be said for Sean Marshall, but I prefer him as a starter (and I think given the ball every fourth or fifth day he’ll be a 12 – 15 game winner every year.)

Part two:

This speaks to management, but when you have players with a propensity for minor injuries, like Aramis Ramirez, shouldn’t you build your team with some contingency for that? He always has a few things during the year that happen to him, hammies, whatever, that cause him to miss a few stretches of games. I’m not criticizing him for it — it is what it is and he’s been a very solid player for us — but knowing that, why don’t we have a player who can backup for third base. Fontenot is not the guy. As Joe noted, Fontenot may not even be the guy for second base. Yes, the DeRosa trade is looking worse and worse — but that’s not my point with this. Trading DeRosa for whatever reason is fine; why wasn’t the need for an Aramis backup addressed? We have a load of outfielders and guys who can play second base — why not a utility guy who can play third? I think that was an oversight by management. In fact, I think this team was “oddly” constructed — almost without considering certain possibilities in order to become more left handed and “faster.” We have Jumpin’ Joey and AAron — neither of whom we REALLY NEEDED — and no real third base backup, no real right handed bat off the bench to PH, and the middle of that bullpen? Never mind that.

Despite last year’s playoff debacle, It appeared that the team had good chemistry. This year, I’m not seeing it yet. Maybe later. Or not.

Sherm

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Accentuate the positive!

Thursday, April 23rd, 2009

First off, I’m pretty positive that we stunk it up today, but that is not what I mean. After being tabbed the King of Pessimism and then repeatedly taken to task for having negative opinions about certain Cub players, I’ve decided to be nice and think positive!

1. We scored a run today! Yay! That’s better than yesterday!

2. Geovany Soto may only be hitting .103 but that’s more than twice as good as Milkit Badly! Yay, Geo!

3. Derrek Lee is hitting .207, sure, but that’s twice as good as Soto. You go, Derrek! Yay!

4. At least we took one game from the Reds. Yay!

5. Neil Cotts didn’t walk anybody today! Hip hip hooray!

6. Zambrano went seven innings. At least he gave Aaron Heilman a break. Yay!

7. Alfonso Soriano has a ten game hitting streak! (really? yes.) Yay!

There are probably more, but I’m weary from all this giddiness.

News today is that Milkit won’t play until he is fully healthy. If mental health is included in that assessment, well………….I wonder if we could still get Adam Dunn because it might be years.

Overheard in the Cub locker room after the game Wednesday — this quote from Lou Piniella “Let’s not play Milton for a while…he’s slowly approaching a reasonable sample size.” When asked what that meant, he refused to comment, adding only that he “prefers Super Sizing to sample sizing.”  He then farted, giggled and slammed his office door.

Ah, forget it. I go back to my original comment. I’m positive that we stunk it up today. Thankfully, tomorrow is another day.

Sherm

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Sample Sizes

Wednesday, April 22nd, 2009

It has been said too many times here that Milkit’s 1 for 19 start is too small a sampling to mean anything. Therefore, by the same “rule,” we have to assume that AAron Miles 2 for 16 falls into the same anomaly category — and give him a pass. For now.

That said, what is the appropriate waiting period before we can call a sampling statistically accurate? Is it, oh, I don’t know, maybe 50 at bats? Is that a reasonable number to wait before passing any kind of judgment on a ballplayer?

If so, well, then Derrek Lee sucks, because he’s hitting .200 after his first 50 at bats. And that is after a poor spring. One homer. 9 batted in. Clogging up that three hole like a chunk of ham in Mama Cass’s windpipe. Or do we have to give him a hundred at bats? Or does it go by number of games played? Let me know, okay?

I don’t know the pitcher’s qualifier, either, but Neil Cott’s five walks and one hit batter in three innings pitched scares me. I think his problem is that he can’t pitch to lefties. But wait, he’s the situational lefty specialist! There’s the rub. He hasn’t been any good since the Sox tossed him aside.

Bright side is that we’re 8 and 4, which is a nice start. Great to see Aramis starting to heat it up — he’s an impact guy in the middle of the lineup when he’s hot — now we need the guys directly before and after him to pick it up, too. Hoffpauir did it tonight and got the job done. I really think that when (if) Milkit Badly comes back — he should hit third with Aramis fourth. Neither Fontenot nor Lee are hitting…so who’s your choice for the five spot? Soto? Not much else to choose from unless Hoffpauir plays first. Thoughts?

I’m liking Heilman — maybe he should be the fifth starter and Marshall should be in the bullpen. See above: Cotts, Neil.

More later. Or not.

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Milkit Badly — part 2

Sunday, April 19th, 2009

Well, so far it’s been quite a treat having Milkit on the team. He’s 1 for 19, has missed a number of games already with an “owie” and is being suspended. The best thing he’s done for this team so far is have the decency to get injured in the right game — so that Reed Johnson could save the day making a catch that Milkit would have watched sail over the fence for a grand slam.

Meanwhile, Adam Dunn, Bobby Abreu and Mark DeRosa are all driving in runs for their respective teams.

More later. Or not.

Sherm

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