A League of Her Own

Chicago Cubs Headlines for Tuesday

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Thanks for pitching 8 shutout innings when it doesn't matter anymore


The 2009 Cubs are finally hitting their stride. In the month of September, they're 9-4, and even winning some close games. Too bad they're still 6.5 out of the wild card and still have 3 teams to jump over in that race.

But at least we can enjoy some winning baseball to finish out the season, right? That winning baseball included a 2-0 win over the Brewers last night, thanks to good pitching by Ryan Dempster, a solo home run from Derrek Lee, a fancy catch by Sam Fuld and my favorite play of the game, a 6-5-3 double play hit by Prince Fielder into the shift.

There was more. In the seventh, former Cub Casey McGehee led off with a single. With the infield shifted to the right, Prince Fielder grounded one to the right of second base. Shortstop Ryan Theriot grabbed it and flipped to third baseman Aramis Ramirez covering second. Ramirez threw a little wide of first baseman Derrek Lee, who finished the 6-5-3 double play.

"I'm not a shortstop; that's why I almost got killed there," said a smiling Ramirez.


If you didn't watch the game, click here to see the highlight on Cubs.com.

Today's the big day for the Fonz, as he's going under the knife. I hope that we hear that everything was a success, and he should see a vast improvement in his game after rehab. Don't forget to send cards and flowers to him, the address is Alfonso Soriano, c/o Chicago, IL 60613.

Alfonso Soriano isn't looking forward to his first surgery on Tuesday, though the arthroscopic procedure on his left knee is fairly routine.

"I never have had one before," he said. "They said it's a little one, so I hope I can feel some progress in two or three weeks."

Cubs physician Stephen Gryzlo will perform the surgery, which is being done now so the Cubs can monitor Soriano over the next few weeks before he returns home to the Dominican Republic for the off-season.

As was mentioned yesterday, Carlos Marmol is now the assumed closer for 2010. He's converted 9 straight saves since replacing Kevin Gregg, and hopefully this move will give him confidence going into next year.

''He's done enough and shown enough, and we have confidence in him enough that going into spring training next year it's his job,'' manager Lou Piniella said. ''And we'll leave it just at that.''

His September stats, in case you're interested: 7 G, 0-1, 6 SV,  7.1 IP, 2 R, 2 ER, 5 BB, 5 H, 11 K, .192 BAA, 2.46 ERA, 1.36 WHIP.

Speaking of pitching in September, the starters have been good. Very good, in fact.

Already the fifth-best starting rotation in the majors, the Cubs' starters are 8-2 with a 1.72 ERA in 13 games in September.

''That's why we watch pitch counts so carefully all year,'' Piniella said, ''so these pitchers have a finishing kick at the end. It's paying off.''


Not that you don't already know this, but they've been good the whole year. And, at least up to this point, better than last year, when their starter ERA was 3.75.


The Cubs won't have a 200-inning starter for the first time since 1994, but despite a few rough spots and five DL stints for the top four starters, the rotation has a 3.69 ERA this season -- better than it had in that 97-win 2008 season, so far.


In yesterday's headlines, I mentioned that Kyosuke Sasaki was back in town. As was suspected, he's here to save Captain Corkscrew from himself:


"He's been spinning a little bit," Lou Piniella said. "How many times have you seen him hit the ball to left field? Not much. When you isolate only one field, that's not good. He needs the whole field to hit with and not become so pull conscious. When you start spinning, that's what you do."


And I know everyone's been waiting for this day, and there's bound to be a heated discussion here on LOHO about these results. Each one of us will be defending our favorite prospect, citing reasons why he should've been named Minor League Player or Pitcher of the year. The official results are in:


Outfielder Kyler Burke and pitcher Casey Coleman are the Cubs' minor-league player and pitcher of the year, respectively. Burke, who played for Class A Peoria, had a .405 on-base percentage, a Midwest League-leading 43 doubles and 15 homers. Coleman, who is pitching in the playoffs for Class AA Tennessee, won 14 games in the regular season and 1 in the postseason.

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91 Comments

JulieDiCaro said:

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Believe it or not, we picked up another game in WC race last night. We're 6.5 back. If we get to 4.5, I might have to start paying attention again.

JulieDiCaro said:

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I guess I should have read the first paragraph of headlines before I posted that.

Carl Heartscubs Gierhan said:

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Giants 3.0 GB, Marlins 5.5 GB, Braves 6.0

antuck said:

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What are we paying attention too? Oh yea the Blackhawks start pre-season this weekend right????

millertime said:

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Yes. Blackhawks. That is what I'm talking about.

JulieDiCaro said:

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Oh and hey. Don't forget that I'll be hanging out at level 3 of Mark Shale on Thursday, September 24, for Sports, Scotch & Shoeshines. And, if you don't want to chill with me, there will be plenty of other CN bloggers scattered at various stores throughout the 900 N. Michigan Shops.

Please don't make me be the only blogger with no friends.

flyball said:

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what time?

JulieDiCaro said:

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5:00-7:00

FrankS said:

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Just curious as to which PR firm came up with this idea and did they get dram shop suit insurance?

gravedigger said:

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Buy me a plane ticket?

gravedigger said:

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5th best rotation i the majors? Doesn't someone owe me an apology?

millertime said:

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I'm sorry I said we should trade z and m-brads. I didn't mean it. I was just being spiteful. I'm sorry.

JulieDiCaro said:

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no, because we still don't have three "GREAT" starting pitchers.

gravedigger said:

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Sorry, we have three really good pitchers.

gravedigger said:

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And its unfair to say one deserves to be paid less because there are already two other guys who are also really good on the team.

flyball said:

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who said that?

gravedigger said:

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That was the ridiculous argument Julie and (I thought you?) were making yesterday.

flyball said:

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no way, I was saying that I didn't think Zambrano was a staff ace

I think a bunch of players are overpaid, but thats different

JulieDiCaro said:

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No, he would get paid less because there were two BETTER guys on the team. He gets paid less than the guys better than him.

I'm sorry, but there's not really a team out there that doesn't rank it's starting rotation. Maybe Atlanta in the 90s. That's about it.

Umbra said:

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I think you're arguing about two different things when you really agree. Julie is arguing about relative pay, while GD is arguing about absolute pay.

If a pitcher will help your club win 7 more games and you value each extra win at $2 million, go ahead and pay him $14 million. If there are two guys better than him who will each contribute 10 games, pay them 20 Mil.

But don't cut the pay of the first guy just because he's the third best. And don't raise the pay of the second guy because he's better.

The salary of the third-best pitcher for the Cubs does not need to be tied to the third-best pitcher for the Cardinals. The third-best pitcher for the 2009 Cubs does not need to be paid the same as the third-best pitcher for the 2010 Cubs. People should ideally be paid what they will contribute to the club, adjusted a bit for risk.

So when Julie says that a pitcher should be paid 'less', that means that he should be paid 'less than a better pitcher'. See? Argument over. I think.

gravedigger said:

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I think thats right.

JulieDiCaro said:

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Right. That's exactly what I'm saying. Thank you.

gravedigger said:

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Hmm. Then we agree. This is not as fun. So now I disagree.

Umbra said:

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Excellent article on Michael Jordan here. And it raises two interesting points:

1. Why do we feel the need to embellish and hyperbolize the accomplishments of an already great man? Doesn't the fact that he dominated his sport so completely mean that we can tell that story instead of making one up about being cut from his high school team?
2. Sometimes, the very qualities that make a person a great basketball player can be taken to destructive extremes off the court.

I suggest you all read it. The comment section is good reading, too, if you like a train wreck. My favorite:

There always has to be one person in the crowd who is jealous and feels it is their place to be the facts nazi....

Pointless article and a total waste of time................ ..fire the guy..........

millertime said:

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Sometimes even heroes let you down. Martin Luther was a great man, but clearly said some controversial and vicious attacks against the papacy, peasants, and Jews. When these types of things happen, it is wrong to just sweep it under the rug, pretend like it never happened, or come up with some fake excuse or story just because the person is supposed to be likable. Marvin Harrison might have shot someone. But he's such a classy guy! So nobody wants to hear about it.

Also, I'm pretty sure Superman was a racist.

flyball said:

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a few years ago I got sucked into this show where a few Chicago sports journalists discussed how Jordan was so well liked they kind of ignored some of the off-court things going on

now I'm not saying his marriage, his gambling or anything else is my business, because its not (especially anything family related) but I thought it was interesting

JulieDiCaro said:

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see, this is my point. he's always conducted himself like a gentleman in public. I figure what he does privately is none of my business. it's not like there are allegations of him beating up his wife and kids or him extorting money from people or him getting arrested for arguing with cops. i'd feel differently about that.

So he cheated on his wife. There are only two people who know what really goes on in a marriage. So he gambles. . I'm quite sure he can afford it.

This stuff has never diminished him as an incredible competitor in my eyes.

I wish I could say that about his stint with the Wizards.

flyball said:

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a Wizards uniform with Jordan on the back makes me nauseated

Umbra said:

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If you don't mind my asking, why is adultery personal but domestic violence public? Is it because domestic violence is worse? (I agree). But in that case, isn't your distinction about which behaviors are serious enough to publicly condemn based on their severity rather than who they involve?

Put another way, I could argue that adultery is a behavior that affects more than just a husband and wife. There are kids involved, and it may lead to wider acceptance of adultery by society. Gambling is another personal vice that is an undeniable social ill.

I could also argue that domestic violence is an intensely private issue between two people. No one else knows what happened, it's just between them.

Violence crosses a line, but it's not the line between private and public. It's the line between really serious crimes and not-so-serious ones.

Or maybe it's just that domestic abuse is against the law and adultery and gambling aren't and my entire post is irrelevant? I dunno.

JulieDiCaro said:

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It is crossing the line between public and private when the police are involved. That's why criminal cases are titled "People of the State Of Illinois" against the defendant. Some things are thought to be so repugnant that they harm the entire society. Domestic violence is one of those things.

Sorry, you'll never get me to put DV and adultery on the same plane. I've lived in France.

You think adultery should be against the law? I would have a huge problem with that.

JulieDiCaro said:

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And saying the domestic abuse is "private" is like saying child abuse is "private."

JulieDiCaro said:

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and no, i'm not saying it's public only if the police are called. i mean that it's been outlawed because of the damage it does to society, such that we've put a legal system, including police, in place to deal with it.

gravedigger said:

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Appropos to this is a story over at Huffington Post, related to healthcare reform. This is amazing:

It turns out that in eight states, plus the District of Columbia, getting beaten up by your spouse is a pre-existing condition.

Under the cold logic of the insurance industry, it makes perfect sense: If you are in a marriage with someone who has beaten you in the past, you're more likely to get beaten again than the average person and are therefore more expensive to insure.

Umbra said:

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I think adultery is bad and that the public has an interest in discouraging it. I'm not advocating criminalization or the thought police, just encouraging social norms. You can get those norms from your pastor, parent, friend, or Congressman, but I don't recommend the last. I don't think my view is very radical.

JulieDiCaro said:

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I don't disagree with you. But I make a big distinction between physical violence and other kinds of crimes or violations of social mores.

Umbra said:

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Now I understand. Hooray Internet dialogue.

JulieDiCaro said:

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And now the problems of adultery AND domestic violence have been solved forever. In addition to our solving of racism. This blog does good work.

flyball said:

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but just because someone is an athlete doesn't mean thy give up their right to keep their marriage private

Umbra said:

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It's not about heroes letting you down. It's about never constructing false images of these heroes in the first place.

It's like, what if you read a biography of Abraham Lincoln and they had an entire chapter devoted to that story about how he was working in a store and accidentally gave a woman the wrong amount of change, so he walked six miles in the snow uphill both ways to give her a single penny? He's a man who united a country, won a war, and freed the slaves! Surely the true aspects of his life are more inspiring than the false ones we make up.

flyball said:

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did you see the 2 part documentary on him that aired on Presidents Day? it was pretty great, and pretty honest about his shortcomings

also I found his battle with depression to be more inspirational than most of the stories that we learn as kids

JulieDiCaro said:

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me too. i totally agree about the depression part. that was sad and inspiring at the same time.

thisyearcub said:

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Jordan's Hall of Fame speech was idiotic. "Hey, let's call out all these people...and my kids!"

It's fun to watch him currently run this team into the ground here in Charlotte. BRING BACK THE HORNETS!

flyball said:

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the last bit is a phrase never again to be seen on LOHO

it was fun watching him pretend to care about hockey with the Caps

canopygrl said:

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Hey! I still have a Hornets stuffed basketball (from a fair or something with carnies).

JulieDiCaro said:

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When I first read this, I thought the comments at the bottom were just part of your post.

I was completely confused.

gravedigger said:

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What the fuck -- why are people expecting me to work today?

And moreover, why is it my burden that people waited till the last minute to do their work, and are now pushing it off on me?

Doc said:

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It's all really simple.

The world hates you.

Doc said:

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Actually, that's a bit harsh...

The world doesn't hate you...it just wants you to suffer.

Ted Lilly Fan Club said:

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We've about had it with that "My Wrigleyville" ad. What's the target audience, stat nerds? Better yet, fake stat nerds? We say fake because real stat nerds know that BA and ERA are flawed. Do fake stat nerds have a lot of disposable income? Maybe... maybe they're privileged banker types that hit 'bottles and models' on the weekends. Can My Wrigleyville tell us that? Where the models at? What time is it? Where are our keys? Who's in charge here.... you see that ad hunts us. Please remove it.

Umbra said:

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I'm glad that TLFC is getting on board with this. I first noticed the ad right around the time that guy poured beer on Shane Victorino. LOHO has become that which it most despises in others!

gravedigger said:

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I don't think LOHO has any control over the ads. I wish it did, because that one, I'm sure, would go. God, I fucking hate it too. I want to talk to the ad rep who made it and punch him in the face with a porcupine.

Umbra said:

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Aww, see I was hoping you were going to say, "This place has become a nightmare."

JulieDiCaro said:

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What?

I don't have control over the ads, people. We're just going to have to grin and bear it until it goes away.

JulieDiCaro said:

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Yeah--that ad doesn't really accomplish anything.

Are you a total dweeb? Do you want the chance to impress hot chicks with your SABR stats? If so, we can tell you where the hot chicks, who will inevitably tell you to drop dead, hang out!

Also, if some guy asked me where the hot chicks hang out, I would just tell him to go to any bar in Wrigleyville.

Ted Lilly Fan Club said:

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Julie, sorry we dismantled your LOHO fantasy squad, our talent is our cross to bare.

Regarding that ad. How much does an ad on LOHO cost? Can TLFC put together one? If it's 100 bucks, this might happen.

JulieDiCaro said:

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I have no idea. I thought about advertising my new law firm on there. HA!

Yeah, my fantasy team sucks. I've come to accept it.

Which reminds me . . . I have to bench Cutler and Bennett for this week.

millertime said:

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Do you need an accountant for your new law firm?

JulieDiCaro said:

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Actually, yes.

gravedigger said:

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How about a lobbyist? Or tech guy? Or lazy mongoloid?

Doc said:

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Or a really lazy software developer.

millertime said:

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wait wait wait. That one guy's name is Kyler? Yikes.

Dmband said:

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From above:

"Cubs physician Stephen Gryzlo will perform the surgery, which is being done now so the Cubs can monitor Soriano over the next few weeks before he returns home to the Dominican Republic for the off-season."

Now this may sound idiotic, but would it be totally out of the relm of possibility to expect these players to spend the offseason HERE so we can monitor them? I mean, I understand they have families, etc, but this guy is getting 136 million dollars and is an employee of the Cubs year round. Same thing with Geo...tell them, hey, based on your performance and duarbility issues, this year we expect you to work out here in the offseason with our training staff.

I mean, is that crazy?

JulieDiCaro said:

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it's not crazy from a business standpoint, but the players' union would never allow that. i'm sure they all have clauses in their contracts allowing them to go home for the winter. if they want to stay because of an injury, that's got to be voluntary.

anyway, this is supposedly relatively simple surgery, and I'm sure the Cubs have someone in the organization in the DR, so I'm not too concerned.

Dmband said:

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Thats right....darn Union. I guess I would just like to see a player say, you know what, I owe it to the team to show them how hard I am going to work to get back to where I need to be...

Although, quite honestly, I'd probably go home too.

Im really just trying to get back into baseball mode due to the fact that I am going to Wrigley later...true is, I havent watched a game in over a week. That felt good to say...

flyball said:

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I don't mind players going home, in fact its probably good, the amount of time they all spend with each other during the season having to work out all together after the season would be too much, and I really do believe most players put effort into their off season conditioning

but having some sort of accountability that players come into spring training with a minimum level of conditioning isn't unreasonable

canopygrl said:

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I mind when they go home and toke it up and then get the munchies and show up to ST out of shape!

gravedigger said:

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is your name Dmband for Dave Matthews Band?

JulieDiCaro said:

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I finally saw the season-ending episode of 'House' last night, and I don't mind admitting that I cried like a baby.

gravedigger said:

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I can't wait for the premier.

JulieDiCaro said:

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I'm getting sucked into "Sons of Anarchy" while I wait for House, Community, and The Office.

gravedigger said:

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House and Lost are all I care about.

millertime said:

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Always Sunny starts this Thurs. As does Bones.

Doc said:

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I saw this on last week's Power Rankings from CBS Sportline...

Milwaukee: Rank 20
Comments:
"I refuse to comment on any entity, sporting or otherwise, that employs Corey Patterson in even a vaguely baseball-related capacity. I'm sorry. I have to draw the line somewhere."

BAAAAAAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!!!!!!!

JulieDiCaro said:

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LMAO

I feel h is pain.

gravedigger said:

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Why do I have to log in every 10 minutes?

Doc said:

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It's a conspiracy against you.

JulieDiCaro said:

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I find Roger Federer to be a complete bore.

I miss the old tennis days of McEnroe and Conners, Lendl and Weilander, Agassi and Sampras and Chang. That tennis was fun to watch.

Doc said:

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Stefan Edberg was my favorite player when I was a growing up. I loved watching him play Boris Becker....good times.

Edelweiss said:

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Have you noticed that Federer looks like Ryan Theriot?

flyball said:

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so I don't know if you have all gotten the email, but the Cubs released a tentative schedule

seems the Cubs from office is also looking past this season

Doc said:

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The preliminary 2010 schedule is out.

Nothing drastic to note that I've found yet...

Interleague is vs. the AL West.

Dmband said:

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Hey Gravedigger, yes, that is why thats my name. (pause for comments)...

Honestly, I just made it up in 2 sec when I originally signed up..although I am a big fan...

gravedigger said:

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I love them. This has been a big fight between Julie and myself. Though, I haven't been a fan of anything since Everyday (and that was mediocre), I haven't even tried their most recent album after the single was complete shit.

Maim said:

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I'll go with Julie on this one.

Dmband said:

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Yes...I agree 100% with your assessment of the most recent albums. What is even worse, is that Everyday was born b/c they decided to shelve what would have been thier best album, now known simply as the "Lillywhite Sessions" named after the producer they then dumped. The new album is weak...

I was at Alpine, and they played 90% of Under the Table...good stuff...Seemingly, there are a lot of Dave haters out there, and what I dont get about that is, if you are a fan of music, you have to at least acknowledge the creativity. In an age of garbage pop music about bling or birthday sex....you've got a band that is comprised of 3 black dudes (well used to be 3), 2 white dudes a saxophone and a violin....very original...its refreshing to see actual bands can still make relevant music that has nothing to do with "disco sticks"...etc.

I will get off my soapbox now...

gravedigger said:

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Sigh. I agree. I gave up this fight with Julie and Max a while ago, who call their music "derivative." I tried using logic, but sometimes... well, perhaps I shouldn't insult someone in their own home, so to speak, so I'll shut up.

Dmband said:

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Hahahaha. I guess it's all a matter of opinion...

I will say, for a long time Dave has been my favorite live act, but I saw Pearl Jam when they were here a couple weeks ago and it may have changed my mind on that...

Maim said:

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Okay, so I was wrong last week -- the people I know are singing the stretch tonight.

Carl Heartscubs Gierhan said:

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I have a lot of rotten tomatoes in my back yard, if you're interested.

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