A League of Her Own

Chicago Cubs Monday Headlines: Cubs Only 9.5 Back!!!!!!!!!



Tribune Photo by Nuccio DiNuzzo


Lou Piniella shuffled the lineup on Sunday night against one of baseball's best starting pitchers. It worked.

Rookies manned the Nos. 1 and 2 spots in the batting order, with right fielder Tyler Colvin moving up to the leadoff spot and Starlin Castro batting second.

The moves had Piniella looking good and everybody smiling after the Cubs' 11-6 victory, giving them three of four in the series.

Colvin was 3-for-5 with 2 runs scored, and Castro raised his batting average to .294 by going 3-for-4 with a run.

Suffice it to say that the two kids gave the Cubs a spark for at least one night.

"They really did," said Piniella, whose team is 42-51. "Both of them swung the bat well. They got on base and let the middle part of the lineup work. We swung the bats really, really well today against a good pitcher."

Not only did the Cubs win, Marlon Byrd continued on his record-setting pace as a human baseball magnet.

Marlon Byrd was hit by pitches in the second and sixth innings. Those were the 15th and 16th times he has been hit this year. He became the first Cub since Frank Chance in 1905 to be hit with pitches at least 16 times.


We're in the throes of excitement watching the Cubs reassert themselves in the division race, and have one more thing to look forward to next week.

Carlos Zambrano isn't expected to return to the Cubs for at least another 10 days, but he'll throw a simulated game today in Mesa, Ariz., at the team's spring headquarters. He's expected to go to Class AAA Iowa by week's end.

''We'll go from there,'' manager Lou Piniella said of Zambrano, who has been on baseball's restricted list as he undergoes anger-management counseling. ''He's missed a lot of time [since his June 25 dugout outburst at U.S. Cellular Field]. I would think he would return some time on the next road trip to Houston and Colorado next week.''

Zambrano will pitch out of the bullpen when he returns. His return to a rotation spot could come later, but Piniella has put off that possibility for now.


Starlin Castro hasn't disappointed since his call up from the minors. In fact, his call up is one of the few right moves Jim Hendry has made this year.

After battling through a .227 average during June, Castro, 20, was at .362 in his first 47 July at-bats, which included a pair of hits and an RBI Sunday. And he hasn't made an error since July 6, after working pregame hours with former infielders Ivan DeJesus and Alan Trammell.
It has become clear he is living up to his hype and probably will never be returned to the minors.

"He's a nice young player," Piniella said. "He's been learning on the job up here. Both DeJesus and Trammell have done a nice job with him. And to the kid's credit, he's been showing some doggedness.

"He's doing a really nice job for a young player. I've got no complaints whatsoever."

Either Joe Morgan has gone soft, or he's a big fat liar.

"I can't really give you a 'why' (Santo has not been voted in yet)," Morgan told us before broadcasting Sunday night's Cubs- Phillies game for ESPN. "I can only tell you what I have said before when people ask me: I get a vote in the Veterans Committee. The first name I put down is Maury Wills. I'll just tell you that. Then I put Ron Santo's name down second. I voted for Ron every time; I voted for Maury Wills every time I had a vote."


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46 Comments

gravedigger said:

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OK, I need to actually do some research for once, but wasn't he on record before as saying he does NOT vote for Santo?

AndCounting said:

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I think he changed his tune after they changed the format of the Veterans Committee voting to allow current HOF members to have a vote (prior to that they polled dead journalists via séance). Could be way off, but I seem to remember there being a story about it awhile back.

kiwibob said:

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I was under the impression he didn't vote for Ron before.. I could be wrong.

What I'm fairly sure I'm not wrong about, however, is my impression that he is a complete tool.

sloan peterson said:

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I vote that Morgan is lying. He has stated in previos years that Santo did not deserve it-he's changing his tune, because even more attention is being paid to those who do vote in the HOF...

JulieDiCaro said:

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he's totally lying. I'm positive he's said before that Santo didn't deserve to be in.

gravedigger said:

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This is weird. I'm totally positive too, but searched for like 30 minutes and couldn't find a damn thing.

AndCounting said:

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I'm also pretty positive that it was more than 10 years ago. I know I've heard him say before that he had changed his mind.

gravedigger said:

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Now that you say that, I kind of remember that too.

Doc said:

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I'm not so sure...he was pretty negative about Sandberg entering the hall, but I don't think he's been anti-Santo...at least for the last 10 years.

JulieDiCaro said:

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I swear I remember Morgan saying something about not voting for Santo in the last couple of years.

flyball said:

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hey, it that a real victory leap? I think someone has been practicing

JulieDiCaro said:

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Look at how even and parallel their butts and feet are. they totally nailed it.

Doc said:

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I have decided the Cubs should not fire Jim Hendry...but they should promote him to team president instead.

flyball said:

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I feel that this needs an explanation, I'm interested in hearing your reasoning and I will reserve judgment until then

flyball said:

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interesting, I don't know if I agree or not, partly because I am not completely convinced that the president needs to be, or even should be a "baseball guy" but interesting

Doc said:

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I didn't got into much detail on my post...it was just something that popped into my head this morning as I was driving to work..."What if the Cubs did the exact opposite of what everyone thinks they should do?" type of thing...and it kinda made a little bit of sense.

If I had written it at home, I would have thought through my reasoning a bit more. And added more detail probably. But I think I made a couple of interesting points.

JulieDiCaro said:

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Wrong. Look at how much damage McPhail did in that role.

Doc said:

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The role has changed...McFail was given too much power as president. With the Rickettses in charge, Hendry will be just a pretty face that gets up in front of people at the Cubs convention and speak pre-written company BS...just like Crane Kenney.

sloan peterson said:

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So you want Hendry to be the equivelent of the Geico Gecko? I could go for that....

Doc said:

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Or the equivalent of what GW Bush should have been as President.

Edelweiss said:

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Gravedigger's picture is cuter than the gecko, but I don't know what to call it.

gravedigger said:

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Also, a lot of the damage McFail did was when he was also filling in as the GM...

gravedigger said:

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Oh, and oh my god, did you just call Jim Hendry "pretty"?

What is wrong with you?

sloan peterson said:

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To be fair, he's prettier than 2 of 3 announcers for last night's Cubs ESPN team...

Doc said:

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Well...I was waiting for someone to point that out.

yes, I called him pretty...in an ugly sort of way.

Edelweiss said:

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Are you as cute as your icon?

gravedigger said:

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tl;dr. Does it boil down to "peter principle"?

Doc said:

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What is the "Peter Principle"?

gravedigger said:

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It is a government thing, where yoour supervisors realize you are incompetent at your job, so they promote you to get you out of their hair, and it keeps happening until you're in a position you just absolutely do not qualify for, but rose to through sheer incompetence.

Doc said:

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Bingo!

Rich Beckman said:

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The Peter Principle states that employees rise to their level of incompetence. As long as the employee can competently perform his or her current job duties, they are likely to be promoted. Eventually a level beyond the competencies of the employee is reached and promotions end. This process is not restricted to government, but takes place in any large organization.

JulieDiCaro said:

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Big media day for me today. Just penned a real-life "My Boys" thing for lemondrop.com, now off to meet with the head of CN for lunch and be filmed by WBEZ talking about bloggy things.

I'll be back later with the game thread.

gravedigger said:

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heh, well then, funny timing on an email i just sent you

JulieDiCaro said:

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Okay--who's the wise guy who put Homer Simpson on the standings flags?

plamorte said:

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hehe.

plamorte said:

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and don't worry, it'll be back to normal tomorrow, i was just bored

JulieDiCaro said:

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LOL. It's awesome.

plamorte said:

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can't leave it up for too long, if the Rickett's see it, they might get an idea for a new sponsorship...but that might not be a bad thing

Doc said:

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At first I wasnt' quite sure what you were talking about...since I saw Lionel Hutz above the flags under the sidehar headline "Who is Chicago's Worst Lawyer?"

Carl Heartscubs Gierhan said:

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Latest MLBTR post: Tigers could be interested in Lilly and Theriot.

JulieDiCaro said:

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They can have Theriot for free. Lilly stays.

Edelweiss said:

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It said "could be", which does not mean they are. The author was just examining the team's needs. Most teams are looking for temporary replacemkents, and Theriot thinks he is the big cheese.

sloan peterson said:

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My co-workers who are Tiger fans want Lilly badly & wonder if the Cubs would take a straight cash deal. My Yankee co-workers seem to feel Big Z would fill the hole left by
Andy P. going on the DL.(did't even attempt to spell his last name)

secdelahc said:

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Does Brandon Inge count as the token scrappy white guy that every team needs? If so, why the hell would Dave Dombrowski want Theriot? If not, I repeat, why the hell would Dombrowski want Theriot?

Edelweiss said:

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Who says he does? According to my source, no team has asked about Theriot, but Hendry is shopping him. Also, the player I saw yesterday in jeans has not yet been traded. One of his team-mates hid his uniforms. and Lou is pissed!

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