And so, barring any last minute freak out by O’s deranged owner Peter Angelos, or a sneezing fit during his physical, Sammy Sosa is no longer a Cub. In a move being celebrated by those who grew to hate him, the Cubs have agreed to send Sammy to Baltimore in exchange for Jerry Hairston, Jr. and a pair of minor leaguers. Those of us who were resigned to the fact that Sammy’s return for 2005 was going to be a distraction at best and a full-scale toxic waste scene at the worst, it doesn’t really matter who the Cubs got in return. Sometimes, buddy, it’s time to go. Now’s the time. Buddy. Dopes like Phil Rogers will express mock indignation that the Cubs couldn’t get more for Sammy, and evil, little, trolls like Jay Mariotti will put down the doughnut to rip Sammy on the way out, but like all things, it was a little more complicated than either has the ability to express. Mariotti actually wrote, “This puts intense pressure on Nomar Garciaparra to stay healthy and carry the offense with Aramis Ramirez, Derrek Lee, Todd Walker and Michael Barrett.” That’s right it’s up to Nomar and FOUR other guys (not to mention Corey Patterson) to carry an offense. In an article that was supposed to be written about how Sammy wasn’t a TEAM-mate, how can Mariotti so...Read More
Jan 26, 2005 | Andy
Honestly, I haven’t heard this much talk about streaks since our school bus hydroplaned right after a chili supper. (I have no idea what that means.) But while one lived on last night. Two are in the ether. Illinois ran their current winning streak to 20 games, meaning that they’ve won every game since Chris Duhon’s gutty (snicker, snicker) performance in last year’s NCAAs. Wisconsin’s impressive 38 game home winning streak is over, as is the 16 game win streak the Badgers enjoyed when Mike Wilkinson’s pie-faced girlfriend sung the national anthem before games. At least in this game, the Illini left no doubt in the closing minutes so she could actually face the court from her seat in the Wisconsin band. They’re quite a pair, those two. She’s a band geek and he’s a rat-toothed guy who Dick Vitale thinks can play in the NBA. He’s white, and couldn’t jump over the Brodhead, Wisconsin phone booth. I see him more as bench fodder for the CBA’s Yakima Sun Kings. Besides, being outplayed down the stretch by James Augustine and Jack Ingram aren’t exactly bullet points on your NBA resume. But that’s what happened. Illinois found themselves down 56-48 in the second half and Wisconsin was throwing in shots from near halfcourt. The Kohl Center was rocking. The drunken students had their red and black tie-dye on and adrenaline...Read More
Jan 26, 2005 | Andy
When you’re on top The Wallflowers I need a bed That nobodyÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s slept in I need some air NobodyÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s been breathing I need a thought That I can believe in Is this fog Or is the building really burning I need you Much more than ever IÃ¢â‚¬â„¢m making new friends But none of them matter Maybe now We donÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t fit together But youÃ¢â‚¬â„¢ve got your arms around No one but strangers I feel fine With the sun in my eyes The wind in my hair When IÃ¢â‚¬â„¢m falling out of this sky IÃ¢â‚¬â„¢m doing better than I thought I would But nothingÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s ever as good As when youÃ¢â‚¬â„¢re on top I want to wake up And just start running Into a ditch Or straight up a mountain I want to get Where no one been gettinÃ¢â‚¬â„¢ Make it deeper than hell Or make it higher than heaven I need someone whose price hasnÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t been met When everybodyÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s disappearing By the minute There isnÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t anyone left I havenÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t meet yet Well I remember When they hadnÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t gotten to you yet I feel fine With the sun in my eyes The wind in my hair When IÃ¢â‚¬â„¢m falling out of this sky IÃ¢â‚¬â„¢m doing better than I thought I would But nothingÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s ever as good As when youÃ¢â‚¬â„¢re on top Half way up And over this rainbow I heard a shot...Read More
Jan 24, 2005 | Andy
When you’re mildly insane like I am, many things can entertain you. At this weekend’s Cubs Convention, one of the things I liked the most was looking at some of the bums immortalized by fans with their own jerseys. As you can see in the photo, somebody actually bought a game-used Gene Glynn jersey. What, Dan Radisson wasn’t available? The Tom Gamboa one was still bloodied from a run-in with the Ligue’s down in Wicker Park? The Cubs were selling “new” game-worn jerseys and a guy was holding a Wendell Kim jersey up to his son who couldn’t have been more than seven or eight and it looked like it actually might fit. I was very tempted to buy a game-used Paul Bako bat. As we know, the hits would all still be in that thing, but for $50 it just wasn’t funny enough. $20? You bet. $35? You’re pushing it. $50? Forget about it. I want to know how much this guy paid for his Steve Rain jersey! I should admit that the only Cubs jersy I’ve ever owned with a number on it was Shawon Dunston’s 12. Hey, I was 14 years old. Cut me some slack. Besides, if it still fit, I’d wear it. But this is not the information you want from me about the Cubs Convention is it? All right, let’s get down to...Read More
Jan 20, 2005 | Andy
As Doc Holliday once said, “My hypocrisy has its limits,” but even though I’ll be attendance for my second Cubs Convention in three years, it doesn’t mean I don’t get to make fun of…everybody else who’s there. I was struck by two things when I went to my first convention in 2003. First, I was impressed by how quickly the attitude of the franchise had changed with the hiring of Dusty Baker. No matter his faults, the attitude of self-defeatism and resignation to being losers was gone the minute Jim Hendry hired Dusty. It may have been replaced by an attitude of paranoia and defensiveness, but hey, for the Cubs, that’s progress. The second thing I noticed was, “Holy crap, look at all these geeks!” It’s a fan convention. In that sense you expect kind of a Lemming Horde at these things. What you get however, is an interesting mixture of the old, the young, the square, the hip and the mildly retarded. I’ve told this joke before, but hey, it’s not like you’re not used to me recycling them. A few years ago my friend Wheels and I saw an obviously retarded young man wearing a Cubs hat. Wheels looked at me and said, “What does that tell you?” And I replied, “That even he’s smart enough not to root for the White Sox.” It will be interesting...Read More
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