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 It may have been replaced by an attitude of paranoia and defensiveness, but hey, for the Cubs, that’s progress.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
Jan 19, 2005 | Andy
The Cubs handed out money like candy yesterday and Corey Patterson, The Farns and Michael Barrett all got paid. Two of them deserved the money they got. The other one has already spent it on leather pants and Zima. But the best of the arbitration eligible Cubs didn’t sign on the dotted line yesterday. E-ramis Ramirez submitted his arbitration figure and it was a big one, $10.5 million for 2005. Carlos Zambrano submitted his at just over $4 million, saw what E-ramis had asked for and yelled, “I must go out there and kill my agent!” Already this morning you can hear talk radio filled with dopes wringing their hands over the Cubs’ public statements that they want to sign E-ramis to a long-term contract but not Carlos. Here’s what makes them dopes. This is E-ramis’ last year of arbitration. You don’t sign him long-term now and he’s taking grounders for the Tigers…or Tigres or whoever next year. Zambrano still has two years of arbitration left, so you play this out next year with him. These are the same dopes who predicted that Kerry Wood was going to be an Astro or a Brave by now. That’s why they’re dopes. You can piss and moan all you want about the contract that Corey Patterson got from the Cubs for next year. He got a $2.4 million raise for striking...Read More
Jan 18, 2005 | Andy
In an elaborate ruse to confuse us into thinking the players have changed even though they haven’t, the Cubs are taking the names off of the home jerseys this season. It’s a nod to a simpler time when the Cubs were bad and nobody seemed to mind too much. Chances are, all this will accomplish is that instead of waiting until they’re too drunk to read, yuppies in the bleachers will be able to ask, “Who’s this guy?” from the very first pitch. There is a benefit, however. For example, if you go out and buy a Neifi Perez jersey (and come on, you know you want to) and it turns out that he blows as much as all know he’s going to, you can pretend it’s a Turk Wendell jersey. Everybody loved Turk. However, there’s a risk, too. People might think it’s a Jeff Fassero jersey and bludgeon you to death. In truth, the home whites never looked right with the names on them. And other than the 6,000 drunken bleacher dopes, did anybody really need the names on the jerseys to tell them who was who? We had our very own Karry Ling place a phone call to prominent Cubs’ reliever Mike Wuertz to ask him about the move. Karry: Are you excited about not having your name on your jersey this year? Wuertz: Why, did I...Read More
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