Cubs News and Notes: Almora Celebrates Mother's Day Early

The regular season is underway in baseball. I'll still be giving you news and note updates, but they won't always be Wednesdays and we'll take some weeks off. But don't worry I'm not going anywhere (wait, you weren't worried? I was hoping you would be a bit worried) anyway, lets get to the news.

Albert Almora Jr. made an unbelievable home run saving catch to preserve the Cubs first win on Tuesday night. Tuesday also happened to be the birthday of Albert's mom. So he dedicated his home run saving catch to her. As the slick centerfielder put it: "I didn't hit you one, but I robbed you one." Thanks Albert for making all of us look like ungrateful kids.

Justin Grimm missed Sunday's season opener due to the death of his Grandfather. Grimm was back on Tuesday and warmed up but didn't appear in the game. Justin tweeted a tribute to his grandfather on Monday.

I speak for all of Cubs Den when I offer our condolences to the Grimm family.

There was a bit of controversy on Sunday night over the advertisements behind home plate at Busch Stadium. Javy Baez said he lost sight of a ground ball as it blended in with a white advertising sign behind the backstop.  Major League Baseball has asked the Cardinals to change the sign for future games. The Cardinals have agreed and changed the signage to blue or navy colors. Now if only they would switch Dexter Fowler back to blue or navy from red.

Wrigley Renovations

The Cubs home opener is this Monday and fans are going to see some changes at Wrigley Field. Most obvious is the fact the bullpens have been moved from foul territory to a recently contructed area beneath the bleachers. Those hoping for more foul territory will be disappointed as additional seating has been installed where the pens once were.

  • The Cubs also continue to offer new food options including sandwiches from local barbecue restaurant Pork and Mindy's.
  • Additionally, a plaza outside the stadium will feature a Starbucks perfect for future clandestine meetings with baseball executives. Finally, as if there weren't enough reasons already to avoid driving to Wrigley, surge pricing for parking meters on game days has been introduced.

A quick update on last week's News and Notes article. Former Cub Clayton Richard made his season debut for the Padres Tuesday. How did Clayton fare against the mighty LA Dodgers lineup? Well as everyone expected, Richard threw 8 shutout innings in the 4-0 San Diego win. I look forward to Trevor Cahill's no-hitter at Dodger Stadium Wednesday night.

First Pitch and 7th Inning Stretch Lineup

  • David Ross will throw out the first pitch before the Cubs get their World Series rings on April 12th.
  • The Ricketts family will throw out the first pitch before the home opener.
  • Billy Williams, Ferguson Jenkins, and Ryne Sandberg will all sing the opening seventh inning stretch this homestand.
  • Ross will sing the 7th inning stretch on April 12.

Speaking of Ross, he did this on Monday night.

Which prompted Anthony Rizzo to say this.

Personally if I was Ross all I would say is this.

Comments

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  • i always thought they didnt give either richards or cahill a decent chance... i think they both would be better than their current fifth starter options...and two other things... first of all, almora will be fine in center, especially long term...i miss fowler too, but i think we are ok...lastly... dont you think maddon should have used his closer in the first game instead of trying to be cute and use montgomery?? i mean we did give up soler for this guy...i love maddon, but he gets too cute at times... i know he's a god and you can never point out any of his BAD decisions, but i thought this was a game he lost for us... like he almost lost the world series for us by burning out chapman with a five run lead...

  • In reply to razor23:

    Ill disagree with the Cahill and Richard statement. 1) I absolutely hated Cahill. Guy was nothing but a nibbling junk thrower who walked too many. Richard is lucky to even be in the league still.

  • In reply to razor23:

    Actually, I don't think Maddon is a God, and I criticize him when I think he makes a mistake, as I did when he kept Chapman in game six.

    But I don't think it was a mistake to use Montgomery on Sunday. Playing on the road in an extra inning game, it is not unusual to save the closer until you score, so there is a lead to protect.

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    In reply to razor23:

    I believe Clayton Richard was a better pitcher than his normal stats last year showed. I think his peripherals were decent, though that doesn't mean I think he is anything like what he showed in his first game this year. I suspect he will go back to being Clayton Richard soon enough.

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    I think Joe was going along with his tribute to the WS by using Montgomery. I believe Monty will be fine, but I would have liked to see a hold there and come back for a win.
    The Cubs are always thinking--it's cool that Rossy will be throwing out the first pitch when they get their rings.
    For all those reading Cubs Den, starting next week we'll all sound older when we say to someone "I remember when the bullpen was Right There, almost on the field of play!" One more passing item that was Wrigley, although I'm fine with all that's been done. It just makes me feel old, and although I'm in my 60's I really don't ever feel old.

  • In reply to Jonathan Friedman:

    I always feel old(er) when I can clearly state I remember watching games at Wrigley Field that were called because of darkness,...

    :D

    But that's only been since 1988,.... And technically that real "first night game" got rained out if I recall.

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    After watching Heyward bat against the cards, I wonder if the cubs tried making him into a power hitter, he seems to really try and pull the outside pitch quite a bit nowadays. I remember him more as an oppo field hitter with his previous teams,maybe it's the contract, he's trying to be a hitter he's not. Seems he hits the ball harder when he takes that outside pitch to left...

  • They worked with him last yr on goin to left late in the year, so not sure. But i do agree. When he hits the pitch away to left he looks good.

  • In reply to CubfanInUT:

    The only way he will look good is going to LF because he is behind on almost all pitches. Other than that it's a ground ball to 2nd. I give him all the credit in the world for his attitude and the fact he already has two hits without hitting a ball 200 feet. It's going to be a long year for him hitting I'm afraid but it sure was a nice grab of the Carpenter liner. Just needs to come out of the 6 spot.

  • In reply to veteran:

    Mendoza had a better swing.

  • Being stuck in St Louis for 5 days has to be considered cruel and unusual punishment.....

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