Northside For Life

Saturday, February 25, 2006

Prior Watch - Day 4

Northside For Life's continuing coverage of the annual Mark Prior spring training saga:

After spending Thursday discussing how he he couldn't figure out who was behind all the bum shoulder rumors, Prior took the mound on Friday and made a few pitches. About 20 to be exact. And he wasn't exactly letting 'em rip, although one has to consider that this was his first time on a mound this year. He had to get used to being on the hill, had to make friends with the mound-become one with it. This takes a little bit of time you know.

Again, the Cubs and Prior insist that getting Mark loosened up is a process. Apparently a very slow, deliberate process. At this rate, he'll be ready just in time for the All-Star break. The Cubs' spin on this is that his offseason routine was slowed down due to serious illness back in December, as well as trying to have him follow a program that will reduce his spring aches and pains. Um, ok. Meanwhile everyone else on the team is letting it rip. Well as long as Prior is ready for his first start in April, and comes out pitching like the Mark Prior we've all come to know and love (you know, the 2003 version) then he could train however the hell he wants to. You know this wouldn't be an issue if it weren't for those pesky rumormongers. Then again, it wouldn't give bloggers like me material to write on either. I mean, Prior Watch 2006? It's comedy gold. You have to have fun with it. Either that, or just live with the angst and crippling fear of having to worry about a young millionaire's golden arm without knowing what's really going on. Thinking that his health is the key to the season. Um, no. Fuck that.

Without the ongoing concern over Prior's health status, what other fun stuff could I write about? I guess I could always rip on Dusty. He's been dropping some beauties lately, such as:

"Joe Black told me years ago, because I had a little dilemma going on with myself, and he said, 'Remember, you're a hitter, not a slugger,'"

For some reason the name Joe Black brings to mind that stupid movie with Brad Pitt and a mailing-it-in Anthony Hopkins. Dusty's dilema now however is who to play at second base. He made it seem like it was Walker's job to lose, only to turn around and pimp Jerry Hairston for the position. Never mind that Dusty was regularly calling him out in the press most of last year. In fact Jerry was the only player Dusty ripped in the media. And now he's talking him up. Altough I like Hairston's moxie, I don't know about have to watch him play everday. If Dusty decides to go that route, he might want to invest in a GPS device to help Jerry navigate the bases. And then of course there's Neifi. And we all know about Dusty's love for the guy. I'll just leave it at that. Don't want to jinx anything.

Meanwhile, Kerry "Splintered" Wood also took the mound today, and made a few throws. Apparently both he and Wade Miller, who is also coming off labrum surgery, have been making good progress in camp and are "feeling good". Take it for what its worth.

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