A League of Her Own

Worst Cubs of the Decade: A Photo Retrospective

If you suffered from OCD, your therapist might treat you by shoving you face-first into a huge pile of icky garbage to make you deal with your issues. Think of this as the same thing. LOHO will force you to confront the demons of the last 10 years, allowing you to begin 2010 with a clean slate. WARNING: Persuing this gallery while consuming alcoholic beverages may lead to suicidal tendencies. Enter at your own risk. Vote for the Worst Cub...

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82 Comments

Doc said:

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This is close to a tossup for me...

It's either Todd Hundley or Aaron Miles.

Jimmy Greenfield said:

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I'm going to cast my vote for Gary Matthews, Jr. He hit .207 with the Cubs in 416 AB's and somehow went on to become the worst $50 million player in MLB history. Stunningly awful hitter when with the Cubs.

smwojoz said:

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I wish I could have finished these. This looks like a snark filled fun fest and I can trow down some snark.

smwojoz said:

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trow=throw Though that is how we pronounce over by dere in Norridge(pronounced Norich).
I shall now use these in a sentence: "We trow da ball over by dere in Norich."

waxpaperbeercup said:

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Julie, the Brant Brown play you speak of was in 1998. He only played 54 games for the Cubs in the 00's in his second stint with the club.

JulieDiCaro said:

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Thanks--someone just pointed that out to me on Twitter. For some reason I remember that play as happening in 2001.

Oh well--he was on the team in the 00s, he counts. :P

Jimmy Greenfield said:

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He was actually pretty good with the 1998 Cubs, hit .291. But in 2000 he was abysmal. Hit .157. So he's a good fit for this fine team.

waxpaperbeercup said:

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my vote is for ronny. i just didn't like the fella.

JulieDiCaro said:

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I think this post is screaming for a poll.

BRB.

Dmband said:

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Its gotta be Gonzalez due to the significance of that play. It also pisses me off that the casual fan doesnt remember that it was actually HIS fault that we lost that game/series...

gravedigger said:

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Yeah, but he's gorgeous. He gets a pass.

JulieDiCaro said:

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He blew our first real chance at the WS since 1945. He does NOT get a pass.

And he owes Steve Bartman an apology.

herlihy said:

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Gonzalez may owe Bartman an apology, but Moises Alou should be Bartman's butler for a year.

JulieDiCaro said:

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Knowing what we know about Moises' hands, he might want to choose a different butler.

*dan bradley said:

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That double play wouldn't have mattered, had Alou been allowed to make that out. It's reflexive. And Bartman, yes, is still sadly accountable.

gravedigger said:

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God Alex Gonzales is hot.

Dmband said:

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Cant give him a pass. I will never forget how sick to my stomach I was after that game, walking around Wrigleyville in a daze (more so than normal).

Doesnt he kind of look like Theriot?

gravedigger said:

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he looks NOTHING like Theriot.

look, that shit was devastating for me too but he wasn't solely to blame. What about Prior shitting the bed?

my vote absolutely cannot go to one of the most attractive cubs players of the decade.

JulieDiCaro said:

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Dude--Alfonseca is getting screwed in this poll. People forget how bad he really was.

smwojoz said:

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Yabbut, he had extra fingers and toes!
Think he'd donate a finger to a worthy cause?
I'll call it the "Give a Pollock the Finger Fund".

gravedigger said:

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I totally agree. He was completely and maddengly terrible.

smwojoz said:

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Is one off season enough to decide you can't stand the new ownership? If it's true that all the decisions come from the top, then I gotta toss my hat into the screw the Rickettses's'es.

I cannot believe that Hendry has suddenly become the worst GM in the history of the game. He has to have marching orders.

Handcuffed by Bradley or not, he had ways of creatively improving this club. There were moves to be made and moves not to be made.

Sign Grabow. Don't trade Harden when the Twins showed interest, then sit him for the rest of the season, then don't re-sign him? Bench Bradley instead of making him man up and essentially destroying his value. We can go on and on, but why bother. This is most likely a lost season. If these bizarre decisions are handed down from a self proclaimed fan of the team then I fear for the seasons after this.

gravedigger said:

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Others have hammered this point home, but I'll say it too: having a fan as an owner = seriously fucking bad idea.

Dmband said:

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Either way that picture of him is hilarious. He's a professional athelete..

waxpaperbeercup said:

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cool poll. i wish i could vote numerous times. isn't this chicago?

payolelly said:

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I had somehow blocked Roberto Novoa out of my mind, but the pain and frustration has come flooding back now.

Dmband said:

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GD-

I cant "reply" to specific comments for some reason, but yes, others were to blame as well, its just that he had a routine ground ball...dammit now Im upset thinking about it...IT WAS IN HIS HANDS!!!! WE HAD THE WIN!!!!

Looks didnt factor into it...frankly, I dont care if a three-toed sloth is out there as long as he or she is properly fielding thier position.

gravedigger said:

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First, curious why you can't reply -- a few of us have been having weird technical problems on this site and I'm sure the developers would want to hear. Is there no reply button? Does it just not work when you click on it? I think there are some javascript problems around that reply button.

Anyway, yes. I was super fucking pissed at him when he did that. But then I pictured him naked and all was well. Well, better anyway.

We're just not going to agree on this. Though we should, because I'm right.

Dmband said:

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Come on he does kind of look like Theriot

gravedigger said:

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Theriot looks like a rat. Gonzalez looks like an underwear model.

Dmband said:

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hahahahaha. You are right, we are not going to agree. And Yes, I have two problems with the sight, but only when using my work computer...(shhhh dont tell anyone)...There is no reply button and the "post comment" button hovers in the middle of the text box...which is funny because I can never tell what I've written at a certain point b/c its blocked by the post comment button.

Dmband said:

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And of course that should read site, not sight. Last day before Vaca...im giddy with anticipation of being off...

flyball said:

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no excuses!

sorry, some of us don't go on vacation tomorrow and are bitter

gravedigger said:

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I'm thinking about becoming a Nats fan. I live next door to the stadium, and they have Jason Marquis.

...

Dmband said:

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I will try and remain focused for the remainder of my time here.

I've already started with the "we'll pick this up after the new year"...line...

I think Im doing more harm than good at this point.

Mattitude said:

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Doc Blume was being too nice to Hundley. Hundley couldn't throw anyone out, nor could he run the bases. Plus he had anger problems. Considering when it was that he had his power year (plus those aforementioned anger problems) I have always suspected that he must have been Sammy's "connection."
Probably the worst effect he had was that Hendry WAS able to trade him, which led Cub management to believe that Hendry knew what he was doing. So now, the Cubs may not have Hundley but they still have Hendry, who is connected to everyone else on that list.

Doc said:

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Well...the thing about Hundley was that I have met his father a number of times when I was still living in Palatine. There was honestly never a player I wanted to succeed more in the last 15 years. You broke my heart, Todd. You broke my heart.

Anyway, that is why I was being nice to him.

But Miles batted .185.....185!!!

Ugh.

Mattitude said:

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It's okay for us fans to feel that way about a player, but when the guys on the radio and in the paper never say a negative word about him, it's a problem. But they also were letting their relationship to Randy affect their reporting. They didn't want to alienate Randy so they seemed to have a hands-off policy about Todd. (And I was being sarcastic about you being too nice about him.)
Too bad, we have so many to choose from.
Thanks.

Perkins said:

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Miles was worth -1.3 WAR in 170 PA. Technically, he should have been paying the Cubs to play for them.

Doc said:

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At the very least he should have paid me to watch him all last season.

Doc said:

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Julie, I'm a little disappointed that JJ isn't up there.

LostinFla said:

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Well, it’s not my poll, but it seems to really combine 2 separate questions based on the player choices given:
1) Most hated Cub player
2) Most disappointing Cub player (based on perceived talent/results)

My choices from that would then be 1) Todd Hundley and 2) Corey Patterson (although I went with Hundley in the poll). Corey epitomizes the Cubs’ cursed nature since he ended up being injured in what MIGHT have otherwise been his breakthrough season. Yes, he should have come back from the injury without any long term detriment to his playing skills, and perhaps his subsequent disastrous campaigns with the Cubs (and elsewhere) suggest that his half-a-season represented all he had, but he was hitting 3rd that year for a reason (and with success) and it’s just another in a long line of "what might have been" for the Cubs.

Putting players like Novoa on the list is digging deep. I’d put Bill Mueller on the list before someone like that because Novoa had no short or long term importance to the team.

The inclusion of Alex Gonzalez, based on his infamous boot, I think is a bit unfair. At the least, I would have Moises “Cry-Baby” Alou on the list way before Gonzalez because I think his histrionics were far more instrumental to the Cubs’ 03 meltdown. Gonzalez actually had one ofthe best "bases empty homerun" seasons for the Cubs since the heyday of Leon "Solo Shot" Durham.

JulieDiCaro said:

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No no no! "Most Hated" is still coming in another poll! Don't confuse the issues!

LostinFla said:

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Ok. I'll wait for a most hated poll. :)

Hundley will still top that one for me.

JulieDiCaro said:

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It is hard not to see where the lines blur. . . ;)

Perkins said:

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I have to say Aaron Miles, hands down. He was worth -1.3 WAR in a scant 170 PA. Let's think about that. More than a win below replacement in less than a third of a season's worth of plate appearances. The English language is insufficient to describe Miles's sheer suckitude.

AndCounting said:

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I just had a Felix Heredia flashback. Someone make it stop.

MillsChC said:

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Where's Rey Ordonez on the list?... he freaking cried in the clubhouse to reporters after making a game-losing error. Yeah I know he only played a handful of games for the Cubs this decade, but...

he FREAKING CRIED in the clubhouse to reporters after making a game-losing error.

smwojoz said:

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Rey Ordonez? Isn't he the guy that FREAKING CRIED in the clubhouse to reporters after making a game losing error?

zonk said:

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Thank you, your honor.

The defendants, Mr. Brown and Mr. Patterson are being unduly maligned, falsely accused of heinous acts of suckdom that was, in fact, committed two entirely different perpetrators.

I submit to the court that what ever errors in judgment Mr. Patterson may have made, he embodies the Cubs. Hope springs eternal - but spring never seems to come (especially as we sit in December). On track for his first all-star game, Mr. Patterson's unfortunate injury would lead him to watch a basketball player manning his rightful spot in CF. I submit that had Mr. Patterson, with his marvelous range, been in CF on that fateful October evening in 2003 - he would have corralled that infamous foul ball. Ball hawks everywhere would now be safe to add to their collections. Mr. Patterson deserves the court's empathy - not its derision... I would also remind the court that a Mr. Dusty Baker - Mr Patterson's superior during the decade in question - doesn't seem to have much of knack with young OFers (see Bruce, Jay).

I would direct the court to closely examine the record and whereabouts at the time of one Jose Macias. Mr. Macias is a known member of a terrorist organization known in some internet circles as "F Troop". This organization was well known throughout the decade for crimes like hacking at pitches in the dirt, posting worse batting lines than Carlos Zambrano, and finding a way to convince the aforementioned Mr. Baker they were options in LF.

As for Mr. Brown, the sole evidence against him would seem to be the testimony of one Mr. Ronald Santo... unless the court wishes to place its trust in known junk science like 'the internet' or 'video tape'.

As Mr. Santo declined to testify at this hearing, I submit that unforgettable cry of "Ohhhh Nooooo!!!!" might very well have at have been a vision of the approach of a true con man... A Mr. Neifi Perez. As all con men do, Mr. Perez approached the Cubs in a moment of weakness. His short few of weeks of favors, though, turned into a mult-year exploitation. Also a known member of F Troop, Mr Perez's crimes are so well documented, I see no reason to repeat them here.

As such, we ask the court to remove the indictment against Mr. Patterson and Mr. Brown and replace them with the real criminals -- Mr. Perez and Mr. Macias.

Edelweiss said:

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My gossip concerns one of today's candidates.

Edelweiss said:

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Just testing the reply button, which was NOT working yesterday. OK, Gravedigger, here it goes.......The guy is huge, about 6'6" and 260 pounds. He looks way bigger than other guys listed at his size. But,,,,,,,not all things are in proportion, in fact what he has is waaaaay out of proportion, and he was the source of much locker room ribbing about his shortcomings.

AndCounting said:

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Wait . . . so you're saying Kevin Gregg is a really short reliever?

Kahuna said:

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Todd Hundley has to be the worse Cub of the decade. What other player have you ever seen get booed while circling the bases after hitting a HR. That happened to Todd for good reason. He was Craptastic. He is also the most hated Cub.
I thought this was a great poll, but with all due respect, I think we missed some very important bad Cubs. I agree with Neifi Perez being on that list. I always thought he must have been the guy that scored the good stuff, otherwise why would he be on the team. Also, Felix Heredia and Rey Ordonez should be on there before Ronny Cedeno and Brant Brown. Brant Brown at least helped us land Aramis Ramirez. Nomar Garciaparra and Jason Kendall shouldn't have made the list. They were never hated, they just didn't fulfill their great pasts. How about Delino Deshields. What an awful Cub he was. Kyle Farnsworth made a great tackle for us, but he acted like a child most of the time, and never fulfilled his potential. How could you miss Jaque Jones? He couldn't leave town fast enough. A few other notables would have been Juan Pierre and (if you allow managers) Dusty Baker and Wendell Kimm.

I am ready for your most hated Cubs of the decade. I would like to see how much it differs from this list. Please consider adding Mark Prior to that list. He encompassed all that went wrong with our championship run.

Thanks for the fun.
Kahuna

Mattitude said:

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Really, Todd Hundley was the worst everyday ballplayer I have ever seen, not just Cub. And I was excited when they traded for him. But at least I got to see a one-of-a-kind player. I would say he was a negative 5 tool player.

GeorgeG said:

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Hey it was actually Brant Brown for John Lieber, who had a 20-win season (with a terrible Cubs team!), and was a BULLDOG!!
Jose Hernandez, Matt Brubeck, and Bobby Hill were dealt for Aramis Ramirez AND Kenny Lofton in yet another fleecing of the Pirates. Say this for Jim Hendry, he owned Dave Littlefield (who in a stunning twist now works for the Cubs!) Without these deals, Hendry would have been fired long ago.

Kahuna said:

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Thanks for correcting me. I get all the stolen Pittsburgh property confused sometimes. I think Dave Littlefield did better work for us as a Pirate. Could we send him back?

GeorgeG said:

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Hahaa, good one!!

Alan said:

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You can list Ronny Cedeno and Brant Brown and yet omit (S)Mel Rojas and Felix HORRIDia?

What were you possibly thinking!

JulieDiCaro said:

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Hey--there were a LOT of potential candidates. After I while, I started blocking out some of less-terrible offenders.

Kahuna said:

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Ok. Just trade me Delino Deshields for Brant Brown. Delino has to be in the top ten.

gravedigger said:

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Yeah, Mel Rojas was TERRIBLE. I think I blocked him from my memory.

eazy e said:

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mel rojas played in 1997. this list is 2000-2009. getcha facts straight.

thephxrising said:

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You are too fucking funny. I was laughing my ass off reading your stuff (and I write comedy in Hollywood). You need to go back a generation. Remember Adolpho Phillips? The outfielder was once hit on the head with a fly ball because his eyelids stuck together. Or that second baseman whose name escapes me who lost the game by losing by losing a ground ball in the sun. Or Dick Drott who didn't throw a single strike -- in consecutive seasons.

gravedigger said:

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A generation? I think you went back more than "a" generation :)

*dan bradley said:

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oh man i completely forgot about Roberto Novoa. He gets my vote by a million. WHY IN THE HELL did the Cubs keep sticking him in the bullpen when he did ABSOLUTELY NOTHING good for the team? The way Jim Hendry has run this bullpen absolutely astounds me. (By the way- go look at Michael Wuertz' stats with Seattle, i think? Or Oakland? They'll astound you. Oh, and Scott Eyre won a world series. Nuff said.)

gravedigger said:

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I looked this up, and it is not true. The Phillies won a world series. Eyre was on the team, but he was not listed as the winner of the World Series.

cubfan said:

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How could any worst cubs list be complete while completely ignoring m personal favorite Nefii "MVP" Perez? Who can forget his memorable bunt with 2 out, and two on in the bottom of the ninth in a one run game? Or his "catch" which caught him on his enormous noggin within the same weeK? And Dusty's "I don't know" remark after that game? He would top Hundley easily of he was elegible for this poll.

gravedigger said:

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I can forgive Perez because of his HR that won the game right after the Cubs had lost in 1998, forcing the one game playoff.

Rich C said:

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I don't know how this can even be open for discussion. Not only was Todd Hundley the worst Cub of the decade, he may actually be the worst all-around baseball player I've ever seen. He couldn't hit, throw, run, or catch, and made terrible decisions.

This is an absolute no-brainer.

BTW....the 2nd worst Cub of the decade was Dusty Baker.

Mattitude said:

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I don't know that I agree concerning Dusty Baker. I truly believe that, had he activated himself, he would have been the best pinch-hitter on that bench. Was there any non-starter who could hit?
Of course, this assumes he could run down to first and didn't swallow his toothpick.

Rich C said:

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Dusty Baker will forever be on my list for doing everything he could to make sure Mark Prior never had a big league career.

If I were the Cubs GM at the time, I would called down to the dugout and fired Baker on the spot after he sent him out for the 7th inning in game 2 of the NLCS with a 10 run lead after pitching a complete game against the Braves 5 days before. Prior had already pitched about twice as many innings in 2003 as he'd ever pitched before in his life, and he was never the same after that. In Mark Prior, we could have had the next Tom Seaver, but, thanks in part to Baker, we wound up with the next Mark Fidrych.

It looks like it's already too late for the Reds young talented pitchers, too. Cueto and Volquez both are now having arm problems. What a shame.

IrishYeti said:

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LaTroy's 2004 was decent to good. His 05 was bad. I don't see how half a season of bad puts you in the worst of the decade. Just b/c Cub fans hate him doesn't mean he was necessarily bad.

JulieDiCaro said:

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I think he unfortunately blew a couple of very memorable saves. And then he was a jerk. It's possible he's more appropriate for the "Most Hated Cubs" list. Unfortunately, I'm way too lazy to edit the gallery now.

IrishYeti said:

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LaTroy's 2004 was decent to good. His 05 was bad. I don't see how half a season of bad puts you in the worst of the decade. Just b/c Cub fans hate him doesn't mean he was necessarily bad.

Shlobotnik said:

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Corey Patterson wins for me simply by the sheer longevity of his Cubs awfulness - he was a day in, day out starting disappointment for YEARS. Most hated, however, easily goes to Kyle "$1,000,000 arm, 10-cent head" Farnsworth, who's idea of setting up a save consisted of making sure the bases were as full as possible when he got yanked.
I would also like to vote retroactively for the worst Cub of the 90's (TIE:Brian McRae/Mel Rojas each get a Spice Girls CD) and be the very first(though probably not the last) to pick Alfonso "But I WANNA bat leadoff!" Soriano as the worst Cub of the teens...

Rich C said:

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Corey Patterson could have been the next Willie McGee, but, instead, he wanted to be the next Willie Mays.

He looked to me like the single most uncoachable player ever.

eazy e said:

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the real surprise of the decade is how and why the chicagotribune sports section has a link to this list. brant brown barely played in the 2000's, roberto novoa wasn't nearly bad enough to warrant a spot on this list (4.4 and 4.2 era in his 2 years). i'll give you good calls on hawkins, hundley. for some real researched cubs decade stories read this:

http://thechicagosportscritics.blogspot.com/2009/10/2000-2009-chicago-cubs-decade-of-summer.html

Delusional Cubs Fan said:

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I gave my vote to Hundley but Alfonseca and Miles both get honorable mentions.

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