A League of Her Own

Chicago Cubs Headlines for Monday: Is it Us? It's Us, Isn't It?

Rodriguez reacts during game 3 of the ALDS in Minneapolis

Ryan Theriot, you ass!
 

Soooo. . . cheering for our own team didn't work. Cheering for someone else's team didn't work. Maybe we're just not supposed to enjoy the post season?

The question was posed last night, more than once, "where do we go from here?" Well, as I see it, we have three options:

1) We pick a new team to cheer for this postseason. However, I think we all realize the effect we will have on the lucky team we on which we choose to bestow our fandom. With that in mind, I suggest we cheer for either the Yankees, Brett Favre, or Glenn Beck.

2) We take abefrohman's advice, threaten to cheer for all the remaining teams, and make people pay us to NOT to cheer for their team. Guaranteed to be LOHO's biggest fundraiser yet!

3) We go back to "cheering" for the Cubs.

Alas, we can take comfort in the fact that we aren't the only ones looking in the mirror:

ST. LOUIS -- Several teams coveted Mark DeRosa before the St. Louis Cardinals traded for him in June, and as a free agent this off-season, he will draw a lot of interest again. But buyer beware: though DeRosa adds versatility and is beloved by teammates, he also brings a hex. His teams have lost 10 consecutive playoff games dating to 2003, a streak extended Saturday night when the Los Angeles Dodgers dumped the Cardinals out of the postseason.

"Is it me?" DeRosa said. "Three years in a row, it must be me."

Let's see. .  Cubs news . .   Cubs news. . . . oh, here's something:

MESA, Ariz. -- An Indian tribe in Arizona is making a pitch to the Chicago Cubs to move their spring training sit.

Members of the Gila River Indian tribe traveled to Chicago to speak with Cubs management about moving the training to the Indian nation south of Phoenix.

The team, which currently holds spring training in Mesa, has said its in the market for a new spring training facility.

Move away from Mesa? Sakes alive! Whatever shall we do?

Oh hey, want to hear what Gordon Wittenmeyer would do if he were Jim Hendry? (Warning, the following piece is extremely annoying):

Not let Milton Bradley disrupt the offseason, too
 

It might seem obvious, but that means deal the enigmatic outfielder as soon as a reasonable market for him is established -- and definitely before the winter meetings. Knowing he's gone and knowing where your payroll stands sooner rather than later are more important than waiting out another million or the ideal player return in a trade.

Make sure they can catch the ball, especially in the outfield

 

The Cubs no longer have a strikeout pitching staff, which raises the stakes on the fielding. And we all know how shaky that looked at times, especially in the outfield. Assuming shaky left fielder Alfonso Soriano is going nowhere, Kosuke Fukudome needs to go back to right, where he plays Gold Glove-caliber defense, and the Cubs need to make sure they put a rangy outfielder in center. That might mean making a run at aging Mike Cameron for a short-term contract.

Sign Chone Figgins
 

That is, if they're going to sign any free agents (and if Figgins gets past the Angels' 15-day exclusive negotiating period). Figgins can fill a void at the top of the order, add some desperately needed speed to the lineup (the Cubs finished last in the majors in stolen bases) and can play enough positions that when/if some of the prospects start coming through, he doesn't hold anybody back.

Avoid any/all long-term free-agent deals
 

If those prospects are the real deals, then the Cubs can't be clogging up their path to the majors. Beyond that, one of the keys to remaining competitive in the next decade will be having backloaded contracts fall off the books, not adding more to the books.

Listen to anybody who wants to talk about dealing for Big Z
 

Yeah, he has a no-trade clause. Yeah, he doesn't want to leave and the Cubs don't plan to shop him. But for all his talent and hefty price, Carlos Zambrano did nothing to make the 2009 pitching staff better, and he was no better than the third-best pitcher on the staff by the end of the 97-victory season in 2008. If he puts up yet another don't-give-a-damn season in 2010, your ability to move him goes into the tank. And for the right destination, he might waive the clause.

So no lont term free agent deals? WTF do you think Chone Figgins is going to want? $*@#$*$%@$@#%$@  Honestly, this Chone Figgins nonsense has gone far enough. 

It was nice to have a few days off from the Milton Bradley saga, wasn't it? Well, too bad for you guys--right back on the horse!!!<p>

FRIDAY: ESPN's Buster Olney says "it's very much a longshot that this deal gets worked out."

THURSDAY: The Cubs are focused on one particular trading partner, as they look to move Milton Bradley. Chris De Luca of the Chicago Sun-Times hears that the Cubs are pushing the Rays to make a quick deal.

De Luca suggests the Rays could send Pat Burrell to the Cubs for Bradley. Burrell has $7MM remaining on his contract and Bradley has $21MM remaining on his, so the Rays would likely want the Cubs to cover a considerable amount of Bradley's contract in any deal.

The Blue Jays and Padres are possible destinations for Bradley, but the Blue Jays have a new GM (Alex Anthopoulos) and the Padres haven't yet named a permanent GM. As De Luca points out, it's doubtful that either club would want to acquire Bradley to kick off a new regime given the outfielder's volatility.

And Spellcheck pitched the other night in Mexico. Or something.

And it only took two seasons, but it looks like Cincy has finally figured Dusty out:

 Dusty Baker may not be as safe in Cincinnati as the Reds' strong finish would suggest. Owner Bob Castellini reportedly has his eye on the Cardinals tandem of manager Tony La Russa and pitching coach Dave Duncan.

Maybe the Cards and Reds could swap managers? I know there's nothing I would enjoy more than watching Dusty dismantle the Cardinals.

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flyball said:

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I might have to give up on this post season, my second and third tier teams are really not doing well

sigh, and college basketball season is still a couple weeks away, does this mean I'm going to have to be productive now?

millertime said:

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You should give college hockey a try. Or even NHL, for that matter. Good times.

berselius said:

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College hockey is TONS of fun. I need to make an effort to actually go to some games this year. The atmosphere is great at the men's games here - I enjoy going to hockey games more than football games. The Women's hockey team is incredibly good too (they've won multiple titles while I'm been here.

millertime said:

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The zero hour, Julie. It's the end of the line. I'm the firstborn. Sick of playing second fiddle. Always third in line for everything. Tired of finishing fourth. Being the fifth wheel. [thinks for a moment] There are six things I'm mad about, and I'm taking over.

flyball said:

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did anyone watch the Red Sox late inning meltdown last night?

millertime said:

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No, but I'd pay sooo much money to see Skip Bayless' face this morning. A-Rod comes up with clutch HR two nights in a row, and his beloved Red Sox are out. All I need is a Dodgers/Yankees World Series, with A-Rod or CC as the MVP, and my non-Cubs postseason dreams will be realized.

flyball said:

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who walks to get to Vlad? seriously? it was almost funny, oh wait, it was funny

JulieDiCaro said:

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I think I hate baseball now.

AndCounting said:

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I didn't even watch past the first couple innings of the Rockies Phillies game. Actually, I don't know who won. The not caring is really kicking into overdrive. Once the basketball regular season starts, I'll be completely over it. Until the annual West Coast circus trip makes the Bulls too sucky to watch. Damn you Austin and Josiah Ringling.

Doc said:

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And baseball hates all of us. It uses us for 6 months out of the year, and then just takes a dump on us and throws us out the door. Screw baseball.

thisyearcub said:

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I tell ya, it's been fun cheering for the Yankees. Sure, A-Rod is an ass and Jeter's a prettyboy, but Texeira is good and I root for Posada. Oh, and Jerry Hairston Jr. sightings as well!

But if that doesn't work for you, there's always the countdown to Winter Olympics. Less than five months until moguls and curling and hockey!

flyball said:

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you have issues

thisyearcub said:

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Why is that? You don't like the Olympics?

berselius said:

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I don't like the olympics (though I am one of those dorks who likes watching curling). The nationalistic grandstanding never seems to be as bad in the winter games though.

JulieDiCaro said:

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I love the Olympics and I love curling! Woot!

JulieDiCaro said:

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I can't cheer for Posada. He has no chin.

AndCounting said:

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Knowing Milton's gone and knowing where the payroll stands before the winter meetings . . . yeah, that's crucial. Yes, let's hurry and get this deal done before an offer that won't royally screw us arises.

Doc said:

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Yeah...but at best we are going to get a deal done that will peasantly screw us if we wait.

AndCounting said:

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That's the dream. :) The mere notion of disrupting the offseason makes me laugh, though. Disrupt what exactly? Disrupt the dull throbbing ache of unspeakable grief? No, please, free me from the mild Milton distraction and let this feeling go on unperturbed.

thisyearcub said:

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Zambrano did nothing to make the 2009 pitching staff better?!?!?!?


Do these writers even watch the games?

berselius said:

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How many wins and losses did he have, Matt? You need to pay attention to statistics. Z cares too much about his R+RBI

millertime said:

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Plus, dude threw a ball into the stands. Do we really need that on our team? Really?

Doc said:

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As expected, I'm back and our team is out of the playoffs. WTF!

So, what am I supposed to do now?

JulieDiCaro said:

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Ed says he's taking over. I eagerly await what he has in store for us.

millertime said:

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52% of the country is single. That's a market that's been dominated by apartment rentals. Let's take some of that market. I call it "Single City."

It's, like, "Hey, you want to go down to the whirlpool?" "Yeah, I don't have a husband." I call it "Swing City."

This goes for the guys, too. Because sometimes the guys are tapped out. But check your lease, man. Because you're living in
[bleep]

I'm an ideas man Julie. I think I proved that with "F&%k Mountain".

millertime said:

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Things the Cubs could do to get better:

1. Sign that kid from Rookie of the Year. He's got to be old to play by now, and with his crazy antics and never say die attitude, he'd be the perfect replace for Zambrano and Zambrano's 67.65 ERA*(Adjusted for help to team and don't give a shit attitude).

2. Send MB in a box to Abu Dhabi, and replace him with Tron. Dude plays a mean CF. Or if Tron is unavailable, start Colvin or Fuld. Both of those guys have an adjusted OPS of .878-.999 if you adjust for fielding, heart, and whiteness.

3. Sign Chone Figgens to a one-year league minimum deal. This move is just a know-brainer. Don't let his bad numbers in the past fool you. This guy might put up good numbers. Unlike Jeff Baker. Who put up good numbers. Or Mike Fontentot. Who put up good numbers in a platoon. Sometimes, its all about knowing whose good numbers to ignore, and whose bad numbers to disbelieve. Take it from me. I was at an orchard that had little kids everywhere the other day, so I think I understand baseball quite well, thank you very much.

4. Don't sign Free Agents. We don't want any new players other than what our vaunted farm system gives us. Signing a guy from another team like say, a 3b/of/2b/super utility guy from the angels, would just be a bad move. In fact, lets not do any of the things I mentioned, cause they all make our team worse. And I think making our team worse somehow decreases our chances of winning, but that sounds like it would take too much work to understand.

Thanks again sports writers, for showing what a horrible crazy world it would be if you guys actually got to run a real baseball team.

Doc said:

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And trade Derrek Lee.

millertime said:

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I just don't get it. I mean, I understand it'd be cool to be like the Rays or Twins and have no payroll but magically have these unheard of guys get you to the post-season, but it doesn't always work like that. Spending money on good players, combined with good drafting, leads to long stretches of good teams, which leads to world series. The more money you spend, the less you need to address issues in the draft. Teams like the Twins are nice, but sooner or later the talent is going to dry up, and then they'll lose horribly for the next 5 years until they get enough high draft picks come through to get back on top.

The Cubs aren't going to instantly turn their farm system around in 2 or 3 seasons, it takes awhile. And I think they're off to a good start. But right now is not the time to bail on a guy like Z. I'd rather take a shot or two now, and then have some horrible losing seasons while we pay off the backloaded contracts. Then we'll have some talent in our farm system, and the financial resources to go after some big free agents. Losing isn't the worst thing that can happen to a team. Losing every year and never bothering to rebuild (pirates) is far worse.

thisyearcub said:

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Speaking of which, the new Tron looks awesome.

JulieDiCaro said:

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All right, I have to drive to Elmwood Park. Bleh. Be good while I'm gone. Also, if you guys could figure out what we're going to do for the rest of the winter, that would be great.

AndCounting said:

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NASCAR!!!

Doc said:

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Drugs.

Doc said:

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Ok...

The Cardinals won the Central division by a large margin this year.

Just like the Cubs last year.

The Cardinals got swept out of the playoffs this year.

Just like the Cubs last year.

The Cardinals were beaten by the Dodgers this year.

Just like the Cubs last year.

So, I think the Cardinals should probably panic. The need better production from the left side of the plate.

They need...

MILTON BRADLEY!

He'll be the player that can get them over the top. And to make room for Milton Bradley, they should make sure Mark DeRosa doesn't come back.

Right? Am I right here?

millertime said:

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You're right that Milton Bradley would help this team win games next year better than anyone they will replace him with. Unless you believe in multiplication by subtraction.

Berselius, you're a math major, aren't you? Is it possible to multiply something by subtracting something from it? Without using negative numbers?

FrankS said:

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I suppose there is always some chance that the Cubs would bring Milty back, but seeing as how the GM and most of the team leaders buried him after he was suspended, I can't think of how it would happen. If people thought the environment was bad last year, just think how it would be next year after so many of his teammates came out in the media against him?

berselius said:

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Sure, you can if you define a specific algebra with a wierd operator etc etc (I don't really care about that branch of mathematics).

Or you could just define some sort of elaborate formula like wins(x) = 1/x, then subtracting from x will make wins bigger

FrankS said:

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Works for me.

millertime said:

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Anyone know any good study music on Pandora? I've just been using Norah Jones.

flyball said:

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blues?

millertime said:

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Any good artists you care to recommend?

flyball said:

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I feed into a friend's station, which was originally started with Buddy Guy (can't go wrong there) try Albert King, Joe Louis Walker, Johnny Jones

thisyearcub said:

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Big Jack Johnson, Muddy Waters

AndCounting said:

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I've always found Damien Jurado to be helpful thinking music.

Doc said:

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It's official.

The Cubs are bankrupt.

I blame Milton Bradley.

Doc said:

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But seriously...this will be the last hurdle before the Ricketts family can close the deal for the Cubs. And that is good news...

Unless you hate Tom Ricketts.

Umbra said:

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How are the Cubs 'no longer a strikeout team'? They tied for second-most strikeouts in the majors, and had more strikeouts this year than last year.

Also, the FIP of our starters this year:

Carlos Zambrano: 3.61
Ted Lilly: 3.65
Ryan Dempster: 3.87
Randy Well: 3.88
Rich Harden: 4.35

Not that it's the be-all, end-all, I'm just saying. He pitched ok.

millertime said:

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I'm sorry, how many X chromosomes do you have? Do you have any children? Then you have no point of reference.

I don't need your facts, or your reason, or your logic. My feelings from watching this team tells me that they are no longer a strike out team. And that's all the research I need to do.

Also, what is FIP?

JulieDiCaro said:

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Make fun of me all you want.

Doc said:

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Harden sucks.

millertime said:

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Who the fuck spits out their chewing tobacco into a public drinking fountain?!? I mean seriously. That shit is gross. I mean, why don't I go take a shit on their lawn? Wait, I remember why I don't do that. Because it's gross and completely un-fucking-sociable. Grrrrrrrrrrrrrr.

flyball said:

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I don't know who thinks they look good chewing tobacco, its the grossest, most ridiculous of all publicly accepted vices

JulieDiCaro said:

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Agreed

JulieDiCaro said:

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Trying so hard to work up the energy to care about this Phillies/Rockies game, but I just . . . don't.

JulieDiCaro said:

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'House' is so much better than this game.

Maim said:

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Aren't the Blackhawks playing tonight? I can't find them on.

JulieDiCaro said:

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Try WGN?

Maim said:

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It's on Versus, which DirecTV doesn't offer, I guess. But they're down 5-0, so I can just watch WILDCAT TV. Jeez. Stop saying WILDCAT!!!11

Maim said:

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So this series, "V" ...Is that a remake of the one from when I was a kid? Something to do with aliens, and I was totally terrified of it?

JulieDiCaro said:

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yep.

i don't even want them to remake it...just replay the old one.

MillsChC said:

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Hey lookie who it is about to blow this clinch for the Phils

MillsChC said:

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or maybe not.... by the way is there some question to whether Zach Braff is alive or not... I just woke up.

JulieDiCaro said:

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he's alive. it was a scam.

JulieDiCaro said:

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It only took me 90 minutes to find Versus on my tv. Bleh.

FrankS said:

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The Hawks just won the biggest comeback in the team's 83-year history. It was aggravating to watch them get down five goals, but it was sure fun to watch them claw their way back to a win.

cubby23(eric) said:

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What a blast, the UC was in playoff mode as the Hawks crawled their way back from a 5-0 deficit in the first period, and it was bedlam when Seabrook got the game winner in OT.

JulieDiCaro said:

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That was a ton of fun to watch!

JulieDiCaro said:

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Oh ha! Brad Lidge vs. Tulo. This should be interesting.

JulieDiCaro said:

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That was a pretty lame celebration. They did't look all that thrilled to have won.

berselius said:

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They probably wanted to get back to the clubhouse, which is heated

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