The Cubs Convention was a success this past weekend thanks to the work of the Cubs' organizational staff and the participation of the players, both past and present. It really is a special opportunity for fans to see their favorite team in a very different kind of context.
My Facebook Live interview with Victor Caratini on Saturday went nicely, and I want to thank the Myrtle Beach Pelicans for setting that up. I've seen him around the clubhouse at Wrigley, but this was the first time we had spoken.
There were a couple of other quality interviews with Dillon Maples and Mark Zagunis done by Evan Altman of Cubs Insider, and I'd encourage you to check those out as well.
Now, at risk of burying the lede too badly, I have some personal news to share. It's not easy, and to be honest I've spent several days already putting this off, but I'll get to it: The time has come for me to say goodbye to Cubs Den. When I was first hired to contribute on freelance by Sporting News last May, I shared the news with John, and he was extremely excited for me. I also shared then that I felt like it would be right for me to move on after the season ended. I didn't want to leave my fellow game recappers hanging, but I also knew that having the kind of media access that being a part of Sporting News would grant me would also mean that continuing to write for a team-centric blog would be hard to maintain. John agreed, and was very supportive. Obviously, things changed significantly just a few months later. John's passing meant that I wasn't quite ready to step away immediately following the end of the season like I had originally intended, but now with spring training about a month away, it's time.
I am nothing but confident in the future of Cubs Den. The growth of the site has not slowed, and that has a lot to do with the dedicated readership. You guys are a remarkable group. The other writers here are doing spectacular work, and I'm happy about what the site can be going forward.
I am excited about pushing myself even further at Sporting News (and places like 2080 Baseball and Chicago Magazine when the opportunity arises), and I'm thankful for the opportunities that have already come through writing for SN. I was credentialed for quite a few games in 2017 at Wrigley, Guaranteed Rate, and at Miller Park, and I had the amazing opportunity to be credentialed to cover the postseason. I look forward to continuing to spend time in the clubhouse and in the press box this year. I learned a lot from these experiences last season, but I have a great deal more to learn going forward.
So I am very excited about the upcoming season, but at the same time I'm very sad, to be honest. This is a part of why I've just put off being public about it. I'm sad because I will always recognize Cubs Den as my first real break. I will never forget where I was when I saw the email from John congratulating me back in December 2015. I will never forget scheduling my first article to post, especially because of how nervous I was. Between then and now, I've written a handful of pieces I'm really proud of, a few I'm embarrassed by, and many I've forgotten, but what will always stick with me will be how much fun I had writing game recaps, interacting with the readers and other writers here, and most of all, being a part of what John had created. He was a uniquely remarkable man, and if I live twice, I'm still not sure I'll hold a candle to him.
That's it then. Bye for now.