Northside For Life

Friday, April 08, 2005

Random Thoughts

  • The home opener of course is today against the hot-hitting Brewers. It'll be a good chance to see if Woody is over his shoulder issues. I'm thinking he'll have a good day. My fearless prediction for Woody's line: 7 IP 6 H 2 ER....Cubs win. That's not too much to ask for is it? Unfortunately I'll be missing out since I'm going on vacation soon and have a bunch of work to finish up. I had planned on taking half a day off of work, head over to Wrigley and see if I could score a standing room ticket. Now I'll have to settle for listening to Pat and Ron on 720. *Sigh*
  • The other staff ace, Mark Prior, had his minor league rehab start last night against the Alberquerque Isotopes (when did they move out of Springfield?). It didn't go well as he gave up 7 earned runs over six innings, altough 5 of those runs came in the first. For the night he threw 88 pitches, 57 for strikes and struck out 7. Take out the first inning and it's not too bad of a start, especially when you consider that he hasn't gotten much work in the spring and the Isotopes' home park is considered the Coors Field of the Pacific Coast League. The Cubs haven't released word of whether or not Prior will start next week against the Padres. It wouldn't be a bad idea to give him another Iowa start for him to work out the spring training kinks and be 100% ready for MLB action. Give that April 12 start to Glendon Rusch and have Prior take the next turn.
  • Another case of Premature Hop-ulation? Remember last year when Sammy Sosa hit a long drive to right field in Pittsburgh, did his signature home-run hop, only to watch the ball carom off the high right field wall and bounce back into play? The homer hop limited Sammy to a single and a good bit of ridicule. Sammy made it worse when he refused to "apologi" for it after the game. Fast forward to last night at Sammy's "new house" at Camden Yards. Sammy hits a long drive to left-center, does the hop, and watches the ball bounce off the warning track and into the stands for a ground rule double. Lucky for him it went out of play, otherwise he might have only gotten one base out of it and made himself look an ass yet again. You would think Sammy would have a better grasp on the dimensions of his new house so that this kind of thing doesn't happen. What I really want to see is Sammy do the hop but have the ball fall short of going out and then get thrown out at second trying to stretch it into a double. Preferably at his new house in front of all those fans he's so desperate to win over. I'm not bitter or anything. Honest.
  • Speaking of ex-Cub sluggers, I heard on SportsCenter that Moises Alou is having calf trouble again and might go on the DL. Better with the Giants than with us I say. Given his injury-prone past and the fact that he played the last two years injury-free, it seems as if he was due to have some sort of health issue. I really liked Alou when he was here and didn't really agree with letting him go, but at the same time I understood the logic. Looks like Hendry made the right choice on this one.
  • I love listening to sports talk radio. I spend about 2 hours a day commuting to and from work, and I'll usually have my radio set to WMVP AM1000, or ESPN Radio. Their hosts are for the most part pretty knowledgable and offer some good insight altough other times they seem to be kind of short on material and tend to nitpick and overanalyze. That said I pick up some good knowledge by listening to this station. However, I cringe whenever they have fans call in with their opinions. Yesterday evening was no exception. The show I was listening to, hosted by Jeff Dickerson and Mike O'Golnick (sp?) had the hosts ask callers for their opinions on the Cubs and White Sox after both teams finished their first series of the season. Kind of premature in my opinion seeing as they've only played 3 of 162 games but whatever. Of course here comes some "woe is me" Cub fan calling about how the season is over, the pitching staff sucks, the team can't hit for power because Sosa and Alou are gone, the Cubs can't come back because they lack power hitters who could hit big homeruns late, blah blah blah. "Wait 'till next year" this moron says. All this after 3 F*CKING GAMES! And I know there are other fans out there already thinking of stepping out on the ledge because the team has started 1-2. Let's not consider the fact that Maddux doesn't pitch well in April or that Dumpster has no business being in the rotation. The Cubs can't hit, huh? They only tagged the Snakes for 16 on opening day, and have been showing good discipline at the plate altough a lot of their hits didn't find the gaps the last two games. But that kind of stuff happens. Of course Dusty has already started with his questionable strategic choices (pinch hitting Neifi Perez instead of Dubois or Hairston for example). People please, CHILL THE F*CK OUT!. Let the season progress and let things fall into place. Let the rotation get sorted out once Woody and Prior start pitching again, Mad Dog gets in his grove, and Dumpster is put in the bullpen where he belongs. Let the hitters get in their groves too. This team will not have as much trouble consistently scoring runs as they have in the past. Yeah they're not going to score 5 or more everyday, but we won't see the feast or famine act we did last year with a 13 run game followed by struggling to get 1 run the next day. Give the team some time.

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