A League of Her Own

Chicago Cubs Headlines for Monday


(Michael Tercha/Chicago Tribune)



Remember looking out to left field last year and seeing the Horseshoe Casino ad on what used to be the Budweiser building? You won't be seeing it this year, thanks to those big green panels you see in the photo above.

The Cubs have fired the opening salvo in a dispute against a local casino, erecting two sign boards in the back of the left-field bleachers at Wrigley Field.

The potential signage would obscure a prominent casino ad in most TV camera shots.


You might be wondering what is wrong with having a casino ad across the street. Maybe it enforces the loose morals and shoot-from-the-hip sensibilities, giving our kids the wrong message? Maybe we deserve something more family-friendly, like Budweiser? Or maybe it's because Horseshoe doesn't pay the Cubs anything for that prime spot:


While the Cubs weren't happy with the Horseshoe Casino ad, there was nothing they could do to prevent it from dominating the left-center field vista of Wrigley Field. But new chairman Tom Ricketts decided it was time to take action, with a plan to block out the building during Cubs telecasts and have their own sponsor in its place.
 
Chase didn't directly refer to the casino ad, but said the Cubs are "looking to protect our corporate partner family who invest their resources with us to be our official sponsors. It's important that we protect our brand in the marketplace, protect the value of our corporate partners and protect against anyone trying to ambush our brand."

Take a stand! Maybe that money can be used for a useful player.

Ken Rosenthal and John Paul Morosi tell us what we already knew, that trading for Roy Halladay is going to be rather difficult.

The Cubs would love to trade for Blue Jays right-hander Roy Halladay, but they would need to clear salary to pull off such a move, major-league sources say.


Thus, a deal is unlikely.

The Cubs' offseason will consist of trading outfielder Milton Bradley, finding a new center fielder and perhaps supplementing the bullpen. The team also could end up with Mets second baseman Luis Castillo, perhaps in a three-way deal involving Bradley.


They go on to list all of the big contracts the Cubs have and why it'll be difficult to move them. But then, they quote a friend of Jim Hendry's to give us hope! Who even knew that Jim Hendry had friends?


Still, as one friend of Cubs GM Jim Hendry says, "Jim has pulled rabbits out of hats before!"


With an exclamation point, for emphasis!



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33 Comments

flyball said:

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kinda sucks for the people who now can't see into Wrigley though, and I'm sure those big green boards are going to look just fantastic from inside the park

its like those green screens from a few years ago, those were just lovely

FrankS said:

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I'm sure that Horseshoe Casino and the building owner will be filing suit that the Cubs have violated the landmark building ordinance by erecting the panels.

berselius said:

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They have? IIRC the landmark stuff only applied to the scoreboard.

Doc said:

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Baseball, in general, gets rather icky about any gambling...I'm not surprised by this step...

But the Ricketts' need to be careful here. If you read a little down on the story here, the Ricketts' need to play nice with the owners of that building because that is the most logical place for them to eventually put a video board.

flyball said:

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there are 5 things that are included in the status, the scoreboard is only 1

flyball said:

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that would be an interesting lawsuit, presumably any part of the park thats protected needs the Commission's approval before construction, although my guess is that screen is considered a temporary structure, that said, I'm not sure that violates the status designation

Doc said:

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Do you have the list of the items include on the protected list?

As I recall, they were things like the marquis, the scoreboard, the ivy/brick wall and the slope of the bleachers...but I can't remember if that is right and what is missing from that list.

flyball said:

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outside its the 4 elevations (why anyone would want to protect that nasty precast panel Addison elevation is beyond me) and the marquee, inside its the brick and ivy wall, the scoreboard and the "open nature" or "sweeping nature" of the grandstand and bleachers (depends on who you believe on that one, I think the Commission uses sweeping)

so 2 things, 1 they've already altered 2 of the facades with the bleacher renovation, but I think that was in the original agreement, so I'm not sure if the screen counts for that or not, and using vague language like sweeping and open for seating to me means that you can't change the seats to add more supports for additional upper deck seating, "open" could include not blocking the views to outside the park, but sweeping? there is nothing in that term that makes me think they couldn't add screens

of course this is all dependent on the Chicago Historical people, which is a different thing than the Illinois Landmarks or the Federal people, its my understanding that the Commission can pretty much make whatever decision they want, and I just don't see them siding with the casino over Wrigley

berselius said:

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This is just the Cubs playing hardball with the building owner, who IIRC does not have ties with/pay money to the Cubs (since there are no seats on it). If they don't cough up some money, the Cubs can just put some ads on them.

AndCounting said:

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I would think the FTC might step in here. A casino sign aimed at Cub fans should be considered unfair exploitation of people with a history of unrealistic expectations of winning.

AndCounting said:

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And unhealthy addictions.

AndCounting said:

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And questionable spending habits.

Doc said:

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That was beautiful!

JulieDiCaro said:

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Agreed.

Doc said:

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Roy Halladay is this year's Jake Peavy.

It ain't going to happen...everyone please stop talking about it.

JulieDiCaro said:

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we have nothing else to talk about.

want to hear how much I want DeRosa back?

Doc said:

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oh...

well, in that case, Roy Halladay rumor yourself away then!

JulieDiCaro said:

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So, I was going to put up our annual free agent frenzy thingy this afternoon, but i think it needs to wait until tomorrow. Sorry guys. so much to do, so little time.

Doc said:

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I'd say "slacker" or something like that. But I just can't do that any more.

JulieDiCaro said:

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i'm too lazy to even respond to you calling me a slacker.

Carl Heartscubs Gierhan said:

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Of course it didn't occur to me at 6 AM, but we should've been playing "What ad should they put on the magic panels?" all day.

flyball said:

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ooh, great game

JulieDiCaro said:

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seriously. i got asked that for tomorrow's RedEye 5 on 5, and I didn't even have anyone else's ideas to steal.

flyball said:

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so we have to wait until tomorrow for your answer?

Carl Heartscubs Gierhan said:

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Lifelock, Dr. Tavel, Sunscreen Awnings, Empire Carpet (just because), Coppertone, Trojan...

Doc said:

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I think they should just put a Budweiser ad back up there...just to spite that roof top after their spat with Anheuser-Busch.

JulieDiCaro said:

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It can't be Empire or Luna. Or Olsen Rug. I'd spend the entire game singing the jingles.

JulieDiCaro said:

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TOM SKILLING SNUGGIE!!!!!

abe frohman said:

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Horseshoe Casino. Duh.

MillsChC said:

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I would hope to think that the big green panels are a shot at the owner of the Casino/Budweiser ad building himself, not just the casino ad itself... cause, I would like to give that guy the "Biggest Scumbag in the World" award, but "scumbag" would be too nice of a word to use.

However, it stinks for the people that have the rooftop that's directly behind the casino ad building... those people were really cool.

Edelweiss said:

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What the Cubs need more than anything else is a better crop of fans.
They keep blaming one player after another when the team does anything short of winning the World Series. I live in Wrigleyville, and have listened to fans talking about the Cubs since 1953, when I came to this country. My take is that they are a bunch of spoiled rich yuppies. They will pay $3000.00 for a new Schwinn Paramount, and then want to abandon it when they see a new Trek, which now costs $4000.00, just because the Trek is newer, and the Schwinn has a flat tire. Trouble is,they are still making payments on the first bike, which is only 2 years old. They rarely even ride the bike, except for an occasional trip down the lakefront bike path. A $250.00 bike from Sports Authority, or even, God forbid, a 150.00 bike from Wal-Mart would serve them just as well. They act the same about the Cubs, expecting Hendry to trade for someone they like right now, but calling him a loser when that player doesn't give instant gratification. If I were Halliday, or Granderson, I would not want to play for the Cubs. Even Milton Bradley could have had a better experience on the team if the fans weren't such jerks. Now we have to get rid of him because he burned his bridges. Maybe we should learn from these experiences, and be better fans.

cubby23(eric) said:

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...interesting take.

I don't think any one Cub fan is alike. I also don't think "real" Cub fans are expecting instant gratification, but rather high performance commensurate with their payroll. A team capable of contending and hopefully sooner rather than later, winning a World Series.

Sure, there are more fair weather fans crowding into Wrigley to be seen and soak up sun, but there are also Cub fans that care about their team in meaningful ways. The kind of fan that gets killed inside seeing the team's big ticket free agent M. Bradley forget the number of outs in an inning and throw the ball into the stands.

Maybe the fans didn't give Milton much of a chance, I can see that, but he didn't give the fans much of a reason to refrain from booing. He set himself up to fail, and maybe he should've stuck to playing baseball and working himself out of his hitting slump instead of talking to the media about Wrigley's bleacher fans.

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