The Cubs were swept by the Cardinals over the weekend in St. Louis. They were outscored in the series a jaw-dropping 23 to 1. No mean achievement. Your team engine has to be really hummin’ on one cylinder to do that.
The Cubbies (to use a term of endearment apt for their cuddly ineptitude) are one of the Majors’ authentic bottom-feeders. That is the stark reality. Everything else is manipulated dreamscape and castles in the air.
But I’m happy to relate that they remain a loose group. With great camaraderie in the clubhouse, and all that other malarkey peddled to the fans so they’ll swallow the sour grapes with a dollop of stoicism.
In today’s Trib sports section, scribe Paul Sullivan describes how the players cope with futility and resign themselves to fate. They dress up as super-heros. “It’s something guys kind of look forward to and talk about, breaks up the monotony,” says wardrobe manager Dale Sveum. He means the monotony of losing. But super-heros? How counterintutitive. We must credit struggling hurler Matt Garza—who may be traded any nanosecond—for the whimsical idea. And so the players on the flight to Pittsburgh for tonight’s game must have been a sight for criminal eyes. Superman, Batman, Captain America, and Spidey were headed there to bring to justice those rascally buccaneers— who happen to be making a lot of their enemies walk the plank this year. They are genuine contenders in the NL East and have been ripping the cover off the ball and silencing their opponents’ bats.
But, shiver me timbers, you dastardly Pirates better batten down the hatches. The Cubs are dressing for battle. And they just might bring Aquaman along for the fight.
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