I'm trying to get into the holiday spirit. I've long been known as one of the most optimistic of fans, but these last few years have drug even my enthusiasm level down. I won't rehash my feelings here, because it's always a new day, with plenty of grass-is-greenerism just around the corner. How can we not be enthused with the waves and waves of talent percolating up through the system, and that Pot 'O Gold, the elusive and transformative TV contract, here upon us? I feel so giddy with the cold fingers of fandom tickling my ribs and promising better things, watching this juggernaut come into maturity, and fantasizing about the waste about to be layed by our boys in blue. It is certainly a holiday in this wonderland...
HAPPY HOLLOWEEN, DENIZENS!
It is their trick to our treat, their price to our privilege, their woe to our Mo. We have every advantage. Money, fame, and a loyalty that permeates through generations that will sit down and give thanks, to our country, to our beliefs, and to our Cubs. No other fanbase can claim such intimacy, and at this point my interns and production staff correct me in my holiday wishes. Barley, dude, get with it:
HAPPY THANKSGIVING, MY FELLOW CUBS FANS!
I can't give thanks to this current itineration of the Cubs. *My* Cubs. Of course I can reminisce and recollect the uphoria, the warmth, the drunken snow angels. But the effort since then has let us down. There is no other way to say it. We have gone downhill. Not just by poor signings and poor trades, poor scouting and poor development, but poor management and accountability, from the top down. We got lazy, and we got lapped.
I recall asking a hypothetical question in 2016. Where do we see ourselves in 3 years? I had never seen such a dominating projection in my baseball lifetime. We could:
- A: Continue on our road of development, with an insane possibility of future domination
- B: Expect a certain level of regression and the competitiveness that would come with the up-and-comers biting at our heels, or
- C: Expect a legitimate threat from a team or two in the NL who mimicked our blueprint.
Never did I contemplate the answer would actually be:
- D: Our organization would become so narcissistic and self-aggrandized they would smack other organizations on the ass as they passed us rather than patting ourselves on the back when we swung our arms behind us.
So here we are. Ownership with boatloads of dollars but no confidence in the stewards of fiscal navigation. A complete makeover of a crew who threatened mutiny, or at least proved unworthy of competent vision. A mighty vessel in search of a rudder. We are adrift in a sea of competition while seemingly having lost our advantage of, well, superiority.
So now we bail. Damn it! It ain't supposed to be this way. The Winter Meetings take place December 8-12 in San Diego. This is when things really start to heat up. We've seen a few early deals, which can be a good sign, but the meat and potatoes happen (or at least are started) with these meetings. We should be augmenting a Championship team, with our financial might aimed at one or more of the big FA's, but alas. We are teased with the possibility of Javy's camp meeting with the Cubs' camp to discuss an extension, which does nothing to improve a lackluster team, but it does feed red meat to a starving fanbase. All other rumors and hot takes involve subtracting from this juggernaut during it's competitive window due to organizational malfeasance. The story lines surrounding our Cubs are not of what will be added, but what will be taken away. As uncertain as I have been regarding my holiday awareness, I can say for sure: BAH HUMBUG!
No Cole, nor Rendon, no Strasburg or Gibson. No Dasher, nor Dancer, no Prancer or Vixen. To heck with the reindeer, we have dibs on the unicorn!
I had planned on getting into the trade market for KB, Javy, Willson, and Rizzo. I've had some technical difficulties, but that actually sounds like this could lead to a more thougtful discussion. Cool. With all of our families gathering for Thanksgiving, there is sure to be a drunk uncle or a crazy cousin. You're lucky if you don't have to deal with a White Sox fan or someone pushing shots of Cuervo on you. If you get bored come on here and debate why your favorite player shouldn't be dealt. I'll be here, as I'm sure I'll get tired of some of the company. Right?
Before I totally let go of this holiday thing, I do have one more Christmas present for everyone. The non-tender deadline is Dec. 2nd. We will get approx. $5.2M in savings when we say goodbye to a middle-infielder that we should have said goodbye to a loooooooooonnnnnnng time ago.
Happy Thanksgiving, ya'll.
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