We Got Wood Back

Kerry Wood completed his minor league rehab last night, throwing 1.2 IP (24 pitches) for the AA Tennessee Smokies at West Tenn. Wood had not thrown more than one inning or 17 pitches in any previous rehab outing. box score In his eight minor league rehab outings at Mesa, Peoria, and Tennessee over the past three weeks, Wood went: 8 G 8.2 IP 5 H 2 R (1 ER) 3 BB 9 K 0 HR 1 WP 1.03 ERA 0.92 WHIP Prior to throwing in two consecutive games last Thursday-Friday, Wood had made five relief appearances for AZL Mesa and Peoria where he had a day off after each outing. And last night was his final test, proving to the Cubs (and to himself) that he could throw in two consecutive innings--where he would have to warm up again after sitting down for a half-inning while his team took its ABs--without any negative physical after-effects. KW has returned to Chicago, and could be reactivated from the 60-day DL as early as tomorrow, or probably Friday at the latest. Either Angel Guzman or Henry Blanco (probably Guzman) will likely be transferred to the 60-day DL to make room for Wood on the Cubs 40-man roster, and Rocky Cherry wil likely be optioned back to AAA Iowa to make room for Woody on the 25-man roster. Cubs manager Lou Piniella has stated that he plans to initially use Wood in middle relief (mainly the 6th and 7th innings) while he builds up his stamina and gets acclimated to facing MLB-quality hitters again. For Wood to be an effective reliever for the Cubs the last two months of the 2007 season, he will have to not only consistently throw his heater in the mid-90's (as he has throughout his rehab assignments at Mesa, Peoria, and Tennessee), he will also have to be able to throw at least two and maybe even three days in a row, as well as throw more than one inning if necessary. Speaking as someone who watched him throw in his first three rehab outings last month at AZL Mesa, the one main area of concern I would have is that he needs to be able to consistently throw strikes. The heat is definitely there, but I am concerned that the control might not be quite there yet.
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Comments

AZ Phil - I fear that you may have invoked the name of the pitcher-of-perpetual-rehab too hastily. I believe that it was agreed upon most of our little community here, that W's name not be used until he throws a pitch in a Cubs game. He has not even officially been activated yet. I will blame you if this does not happen. You have been warned.

"he will also have to be able to throw at least two and maybe even three days in a row, as well as throw more than one inning if necessary."

Why is this true? Wouldn't Wood be valuable even if he is only used when there is concern about Marmol being over used?

AZ Phil - As much as we appreciate your in depth reports we aren't above hurting you for using the name of the pitcher who shall not be named.

I suggest changing your article before someone leaves a horse's head on your pillow.

I know it's been said before, but MVN/Wordpress sucks major donkey.

az phil-
room will still need to be made for (re-hab guy) on the 25 man roster, true?
is cherry the odd man out for now?

How do you know the headline was referring to W? Maybe AZ Phil just had a good morning...

AZ Phil - I fear that you may have invoked the name of the pitcher-of-perpetual-rehab too hastily

Not only that Jace, but look what he did in this sentence:

Prior to throwing in two consecutive games last Thursday-Friday, Wood had made five relief appearances for AZL Mesa and Peoria where he had a day off after each outing.

P & W in the same sentence?!?!??!?!? We're doomed.

dc60124 — August 1, 2007 @ 10:45 am
az phil-
room will still need to be made for (re-hab guy) on the 25 man roster, true?
is cherry the odd man out for now?

======================

DC60124: Unless somebody unexpectedly goes on the DL, I would think it would be Rocky Cherry.

is cherry the odd man out for now?

I can see the headline now:
Wood Pops Cherry

Phil also invoked the name of our other pitcher who shall remain nameless.

Or what Wes said.

more future headlines:

Wood Succumbs to Prior Injury

AZ: Has Wood made any mechanical changes to his delivery? What did you notice? Is he still falling off considerably? Is his slot the same? Any recoiling? Let me in on it!

sod the pessimism.

getting wood gives me some cub chub.

Wood wouldn't (sorry...) have to pitch that frequently after Sept. 1, when more pitchers wil be added to the 'pen.

We are all living in two parallel worlds: the world of healthy denial that W will ever return, and the world where W seems to be on track to actually contribute. If those worlds collide at Wrigley this weekend, it's going to be a stunning, emotional thing.

Remember the exhiliration of the Cubs' run in 2003? I've followed sports all my life, rooted for lots of different teams, but there was nothing like those 2-3 months. We all felt it. And whether we admit it or not, we all associate -- even if only subconsciously -- Kerry Wood with that feeling of hope, promise and resurgence of this franchise.

I understand that people are hesitant to unlock those feelings again, because we have been burned too many times. But it's about to happen. Seeing KW on the mound making real contributions to this team -- a team that has shown it may be capable of great things -- may stir up long-dormant emotions in even the most cynical Cub fans.

The Cubs are one game out of first, with the best record in MLB over the last half of the season, and KW is about to return. We're about to get on a roller coaster. Hang on tight.

433-
As much as many of us DO want to deny this just to protect ourselves from the inevitable disappointment of failure, I think, given the circumstances, it will be hard to do so. I was one of the people begging Hendry to get Wood/Prior out of the organization if only to eliminate the 'what if' variable. Sure, the likelihood that Wood comes in and contributes is not as high as inflammation and soreness returning, but that doesn't mean I won't hope for the best and dig around in my storage to find the 'We Got Wood' shirt that I wore thin in 03.

You can bet I'll be the fool in section 209 standing up and applauding Wood with that shirt on if he comes into the game on Friday.

If for no other reason, just to acknowledge the strength and persistance it must have taken him to overcome the massive frustrations of his lost career.

I'm still holding my breath that W will be able to remain healthy. Sure, maybe he'll give us a week or two but what happens if his pain returns as quickly as it mysteriously left?

BTW, unless I'm mistaken, Kusuke Fukudome becomes a FA this month in Japan. I know they're under the gun with the sale, but I hope the Cubs show some interest.

There was a great article in the New York Times on Wood's comeback that was printed in early June. This would be a good time to break that out -- anyone recall it, or better yet have a link to it?

great article. wood is a tough mofo, with the heart of a champion.

Yea... what Henry said! :)

433--
Great article--I believe it is now archived on NYT site, so you'll need to be registered..but here is the link..

http://www.nytimes.com/2007/06/03/sports/play...

433: "We all felt it. And whether we admit it or not, we all associate — even if only subconsciously — Kerry Wood with that feeling of hope, promise and resurgence of this franchise."

Hate to be the contrarian, but for me it was 100% Mark Prior that provided the hope, promise and excitement. I couldn't wait for Prior starts; they were an event. He was by far the best pitcher in baseball after the Giles collision. I remember arguing whether Pujols or Prior was the most valuable commodity in baseball.

For some reason Cubs fans tend to like Kerry Wood more. Perhaps because he's grittier, perhaps because his wife's hotter. I, however, love Mark Prior and I always will. Even if he never throws another pitch in the big leagues.

kerry wood...

marmol/howry/dumpster/wuertz...

hey, wood's nice. good perk. would be nice if he was here all year, but he's here now.

unlike the past he's a perk, not a needed part.

be interesting to see what he's throwing in realtime rather than boxscores from minor league games.

cool thing is wood's possible failure doesnt put the team in a worse situation unless he gets like 30 innings to showcase his failure in situations that matter.

For some reason Cubs fans tend to like Kerry Wood more.

It is because people have this absurd idea that Mark Prior is not tough enough. People blamed Prior's injuries on lack of mental toughness instead of legitimate injuries, even though they had nothing to support such assertions. We saw it (and still do) all the time here on TCR, people calling Prior all kinds of names implying that he wasn't "manly" enough.

Of course, we then found out that his shoulder was torn up and that he needed serious surgery.

But people still question his toughness.

But yea - I always like Prior. I still think that he would have been the better pitcher of the two (Prior and Wood) and could have been something really, really special.

Oh well...

"henry — August 1, 2007 @ 11:27 am

great article. wood is a tough mofo, with the heart of a champion."

Thank you! I am tired of people calling him out for being a wimp. (and some people do) That guy has given every ounce he could to this organization and I think that's incredible.

If he gets activated tomorrow I'm so there.

If he gets hurt again after a week or two then oh well.

If he doesn't .... too exciting ... does not compute ...

Rishi - To me, Prior was always a more reclusive, spoiled, pampered, prima donna. Wood is the more relatable of the two. That's not why I like him more, but I bet it is for a lot of Cubs fans; they like who they can relate to. Down-to-earth everyday-type guys like Wood, DLee, Barrett pre-07, the Riot, etc.

Rotoworld blurb says Ward's calf has improved quicker than expected and he could be back by mid-August.

I have to believe that W will be on a very short leash and that Lou will not treat him much differently than any other minor league call-up pitcher. The bulk of the relief work is still going to the pitchers he has faith in right now.

kupfer — August 1, 2007 @ 11:05 am
AZ: Has Wood made any mechanical changes to his delivery? What did you notice? Is he still falling off considerably? Is his slot the same? Any recoiling? Let me in on it!

========================

KUPFER: From what I could see, his delivery was smooth and he threw free and easy, although I would also say his mechanics are probably basically the same as before his injury.

But at least he is throwing with plus-velocity. (Wade Miller, he ain't!). He had no trouble throwing his fastball for strikes out here, but he did have some trouble throwing his breaking ball for strikes in two of the three outings.

Also, for those of you who haven't seen him since last season, Woody has lost a lot of weight. He went on a diet last winter where they deliver the meals to your house (I forget what it's called). From a distance, he looks tall and lean, like Bob Howry or Sean Marshall.

He went on a diet last winter where they deliver the meals to your house (I forget what it’s called).

Did he go on the NutriSystem diet that gets advertised on ESPN all the time? With Golich, Montana, etc as spokespeople?

I don't know about Mark Prior, but I can tell you Kerry Wood bleeds Cubbie Blue. Like Ernie Banks, Billy Williams, Ron Santo, Mark Grace, and Ryne Sandberg, he is an eternal Cub.

"How do you know the headline was referring to W? Maybe AZ Phil just had a good morning…"

Brilliant Dave. :-)

I refuse this time to get excited about W, in light of my heart getting broken too many times. If he could effectively replace Eyre, in spite of being a RH, I'd be thrilled!

Sheets gone for AT LEAST four more weeks, absolute minimum. I say he's back mid-September, and of course they're buried by five games at that point. =D

http://www.jsonline.com/story/index.aspx?id=6...

#6 Dave

Big blog comment of the month right there. The bar has been raised, fellas.

Just wanted to say hi. Will be back here and attempting to be useful, in another week.

One game out.... hell yeah....

Some of you still don't get it. HE'S NOT HERE YET! There has not been an evaluation of how he feels after last night's outing. He has not yet travelled from Tennesee to Chicago. He has not yet successfully navigated the clubhouse. He has not yet warmed up without tweaking anything. HE'S NOT HERE YET. Call this irrational, whatever. I don't care what you call it. From my standpoint, I call it being reasonable.

If he could effectively replace Eyre, in spite of being a RH, I’d be thrilled!

Hmmm...

Career #'s against lefties:
Wood: 1.43 WHIP, .221 BAA
Eyre: 1.41 WHIP, .246 BAA

Works for me...

Interestingly, Eyre was better against righties last year than lefties.

A sign of panic in Wisconsin?

Ricky Weeks was sent down to AAA Nashville.

Elmer Dessens is also being called up to replace the newly aquired Scott Linebrink who just became a dad.

dave — August 1, 2007 @ 11:50 am
Did he go on the NutriSystem diet that gets advertised on ESPN all the time? With Golich, Montana, etc as spokespeople?

======================

DAVE: I don't remember if it was NutriSystem. He said what it was, but unfortunately I didn't write it down.

# Dave.

I had to go back and read that again....been laughing my arse off now for, ohhh say 20 minutes.

Sorry to hijack yoru blog guys....my teenage sense of humor getting to me.

Done now. Carry on.

Joey

I wouldn't call either of those "panic."

Essens will just be up for a couple of days until Linebrink comes back.

And Weeks has been downright bad. He has a good April, and has been bad since then. It just means that they are willing to make adjustments and send a player down who doesn't deserve to stay in the bigs.

dave, i’m pretty sure that Wood has great peripherals against all batters.

I agree... but I was posting that in response to the idea of him replacing Eyre, who has been seen as a loogy. I was just pointing out that Wood has been just as good against lefties as one of our lefty specialists.

Any of you guys watch the video on the left hand column of the NYT link? Pretty cool to watch him working on getting his body back together. He even threw a baseball in the end :)

Murphy, on the Score, is talking about Jock's missed fly ball that bounced into the center field shrubbery. Has anyone see this happen before? A ball bounce into the bleachers at Wrigley?

Dave, sure.

I've seen ground rule doubles at Wrigley many times.

I remember Sosa dropping bombs on the warning track that bounced into the stands.

I’ve seen ground rule doubles at Wrigley many times.

I feel like I have too (though I can't think of examples) ... but Murph is saying he can't ever remember it happening.

Has anyone see this happen before? A ball bounce into the bleachers at Wrigley?

Good grief, how old are you....six?

Did the ball bounce into the stands, or get lost in the ivy? If its in the ivy, all Jones has to do is raise his arms and its a ground-rule double.

Good grief, how old are you….six?

Yup... I am 6 years old. But I'll be 7 soon! But maybe when I grow up I can start acting like I am six like you.

But thanks for answering the question.

Seriously... I just don't remember a lot of ground rule doubles that have bounced into the bleachers at wrigley. And obviously I am not the only one, as Murphy is talking about it on the radio.

Did the ball bounce into the stands

It bounced into the "stands," though it was in CF so it really bounced into the shrubbery in CF where no one is allowed to sit.

We needed a bat and got none.

We could easily go back to the days when Murton, Jones, DeRosa, Floyd, insert any catcher's name here, Fontenot, Theriot don't hit. If that happens we are screwed, regardless of the pitching.

Margin for error is very, very thin.

We could easily go back to the days when Murton, Jones, DeRosa, Floyd, insert any catcher’s name here, Fontenot, Theriot don’t hit.

Well... being that the Cubs are winning while Murton, Floyd, Catcher, and Fontenot (along with Soriano) all are not hitting very well, it doesn't really worry me.

'Rishi says:

433: “We all felt it. And whether we admit it or not, we all associate — even if only subconsciously — Kerry Wood with that feeling of hope, promise and resurgence of this franchise.”

Hate to be the contrarian, but for me it was 100% Mark Prior that provided the hope, promise and excitement. I couldn’t wait for Prior starts; they were an event. He was by far the best pitcher in baseball after the Giles collision. '

2nd half, 2003:

Prior: 10-1, 1.52 ERA, 95 K, 16 BB
Wood: 5-5, 3.21 ERA, 110 K, 42 BB

It's funny. I didn't realize how much better Prior pitched than Wood. I guess I just remember Wood in September through the end of the regular season when he was just unreal.

Sept 2003:

Prior: 5-1, 2.27 ERA, 60 K, 12 BB
Wood: 3-1, 1.00 ERA, 47 K, 13 BB

Then again, Prior wasn't too shabby in September that year either.

when your most glaring need is a part time RH'r RF'r well you're not doing too bad...imo...

would people be happy with keilty? helll, i wish milton bradley was here, but that's another arguement probably not worth having at this point.

I don't think Kielty would be any better than DeRosa and thus I'd be against having him, unless he were willing to go to the minors and await a September call-up. What the Cubs really need is some more pop to their lineup, righty or lefty, and there just doesn't seem to be much of that that isn't ridiculously priced. I hope Hendry tries for Gomes again in the offseason.

I'd take Keilty.

Stevens/Rishi

Maybe you can only remember back as far as 2003 but Kerry Wood brought way more excitement to the Cubs organization than Mark Prior ever did. He's the reason that we brought the K cards out there. The fans made "We Got Wood" t-shirts. Kerry Wood was as close to a rock star baseball player as we have ever seen.

Mark Prior was a dynamite pitcher but never brought the vibe to Wrigley that Wood did.

"I don’t think Kielty would be any better than DeRosa and thus I’d be against having him"

that's the thing, though...the issue im thinking is the most glaring is the lack of a RH hitter off the bench and how quickly the RH hitters are used/stacked against lefties leaving little off the bench.

murton's here now and that helps, but his RF isnt very steady.

im thinking about that kinda lift that nevin gave the cubs...occasional start, bat off the bench...etc etc.

I don’t think Kielty would be any better than DeRosa

He isn't supposed to be. Having Kielty would provide a decent right handed option off of the bench. DeRosa plays everyday.

Not sure how the two are related to each other.

And Andrew, Kielty would be a bench player. Send Fonty down as we don't need him. We already have a back up ss in Cedeno who can also cover 2nd or 3rd.

Quick thought:

How many bases will Reyes steal against the Cubs this weekend? 10? 12?

When Reyes starts to steal 2nd, Kendall should throw the ball directly to 3rd base, just to be safe. Better yet, he should runt he ball down to third -- The Riot has made some amazing plays to keep Kendall's throws out of CF -- ugh.

Jason -- better keep those big hits coming.

CRUNCH:

Evan Longoria promoted to AAA.

That's an excellent point, Chad. You're also quite sharp to deduce that I did not start watching Cubs baseball religiously until the glorious summer of 2001. Indeed, my memories of the 1998 season are almost nil.

I have paid my due dilligence with regards to history, though. I bought the 20 K game off mlb.tv and watch often during the winter. The way that ball moves...no wonder he's hurt all the time. Actually, Marmol has shades of Kerry's wicked bendy stuff, doesn't he?

I had assumed Kielty was being talked about as the RH-ed platoon RFer to pair with Floyd. If he's just being used as a bench player, then sure, he'd be fine, but who would he replace? Murton should have been traded if he's just going to be a bench player and pinch hitter.

Stevens,

Don't forget how good KW was (I can't honestly use W in a positive sense) at the start of 2004 before he got hurt again:

6 starts, 42.2 IP, 28 H, 13 BB, 50 K, 2.53 ERA

Man, I love this feature on Baseball Reference where you can just click on 2 games and it sums all the stats in between.

I had assumed Kielty was being talked about as the RH-ed platoon RFer to pair with Floyd.

Well... that may be the case. But DeRosa has not been playing that role; DeRosa has been playing second against lhp with Fontenot on the bench.

"How many bases will Reyes steal against the Cubs this weekend? 10? 12?"

How about we just keep him off base?

It's in some respects kind of silly to compare Prior and Wood, but I have always been a Prior man. He just always struck me as someone who was going to be the best pitcher in baseball, because he could get people out on contact or with Ks. He had great perephial, a nice assortment of pitches and was just effortless when he was on the mound.

I always kind of viewed him as our ace with Wood and Z the best 2 and 3 pitches in the history of baseball.

Well… that may be the case. But DeRosa has not been playing that role; DeRosa has been playing second against lhp with Fontenot on the bench.

Yes, true. My point that DeRosa could ably fill that role wasn't meant to convey that that is indeed how Lou is using him.

I just can't believe all these people who have never seen a ball bounce into the Wrigley Field bleachers before are experts on an obscure DFA like Bobby Kielty.

Quick, without looking, what color is his hair?

And yes, it is kind of annoying that people blame either Prior or Wood for being pansies. Prior especially we've found out is hurt because of the colission and no one diagnosing that he had left over injuries from that. It was a freak accident that has led to the current situation.

Hopefully the surgery will fix it, because Prior is still young. Even if he doesn't come back as the most dominant guy in baseball, he could still look very nice in our rotation, especially when we drop Marquis and go with Z, Hill, Marshall, Lilly and Prior.

Kielty?

Let's just stick with Murton then, when you're young, cheap and can't stick with the A's, you have problems.

Hey cwtp, stop being an asshole and bring some real discussion to the table. I can't very well bring up any balls that have bounced into the bleachers, even if they've happened. But I can definitely read a lot about all different kinds of players.

You're post has nothing do with anything except personal animosity between you and dave.

I just can’t believe all these people who have never seen a ball bounce into the Wrigley Field bleachers before are experts on an obscure DFA like Bobby Kielty.

And the two are related how? Not sure why you have such a problem with me saying I can't recall a ball bouncing into the bleachers, based on a bunch of other people having the same conversation on the radio.

Quick, without looking, what color is his hair?

Red. What else would you like to know?

Rob, I have no desire to see Matt Murton pinch hit late in a game.

If Murton is going to contribute, he needs to play the entire game.

Kielty's PH numbers: .286 .343 .460

And he hits lefties very well. I would take him in a swap for murton (murton goes to AAA) for sure.

"Red. What else would you like to know?"

What's his favorite food?

Well, he eats pitchers for lunch!

"And Andrew, Kielty would be a bench player. Send Fonty down as we don’t need him. We already have a back up ss in Cedeno who can also cover 2nd or 3rd."

Plus, Cedeno has the added bonus of not being able to hit. Should fit perfect with the Cubs.

What’s his favorite food?

I have no idea. Probably something red.

I think there's a ground rule at Wrigley that a ball bouncing into the bleachers is a triple unless a fan throws to third to hold the batter to a double.

I'm going to guess there's more than the numbers on Kielty. A's wouldn't give up on him over 30 some AB's and somebody would have traded for him if it was just a case of an overcrowded outfield.

My 2 cents...

Conine or someone like that should be available soon enough.

Jose Cruz Jr. got DFAed today too, not sure there's really much of a difference between him and Kielty, but probably another cheap option out there.

Horatio, say what you want about Cedeno (i don't like him either) but he is our only backup shortstop. DeRosa is not the answer if Theriot gets dinged and misses a day or so.

AND late in a game with a lead, I want Cedeno in there.

and NO WAY JOSE CRUZ JR. FOR ME!!!!

And I'd take Conine.

I will agree with Chad here, Jose Cruz has not been good the past couple years and is positively dreadful as a PH. .182 BA, .289 OBP, .379 SLG for a .668 OPS.

I would definitely take Conine over Keilty or Cruz Jr.

Hendry/LouPa said in the trib this morning that they were working on a deal for a bench player, but it fell through. Has anyone heard anything who this person may have been?

Were these the Church talks?

Jose Cruz ... is positively dreadful as a PH. .182 BA, .289 OBP, .379 SLG for a .668 OPS.

Which, as much as it pains be to say it, is better than Murton's OPS as a PH (though it is in a limited number of at-bats).

My 2 cents on W and P: I always liked them both, but agree with Arizona Phil that W bleeds Cubbie blue, a vibe I never got from P. Maybe I'm wrong but I don't think P signs the hometown discount contract that W did in the same situation. Also, I too thought P was set up for the better career, but I still today have a gut feeling that if I needed to win one game and only one, I'd take W in a heartbeat.

WISCGRAD said: if I needed to win one game and only one, I’d take W in a heartbeat.

Funny you should say that, since in 2003 the Cubs needed to win "one game and one game only" to get into the Series and they gave Prior and Wood the ball on consecutive days. Prior took a shutout into the eighth. Wood, not so much.

There have been way, way too many mentions of He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named in this thread today. Do any of you really think that the WordPress "glitches" are unrelated?

Virgina Phil: funny you should use that as your example since the Cubs lost both of those games if my history is correct. Just as W struggled a bit in Game 7, P was part of the 8th inning collapse in game 6. If your guy had done his job more effectively then you wouldn't even be able to use that example against my guy. But this is a moot point. Since it's a hypothetical - since I can't imagine myself managing either for just one game and having to make the choice - I can't really be wrong in saying that I'd take W.

I knew that somehow it would come to this....

I’m going to guess there’s more than the numbers on Kielty.

Exactly. How about torn miniscus in left knee that showed up a few days before spring training and just a month after he signed a $2.1 MM contract.
Then a strained calf that kept getting tweaked and kept him on the DL most of the year.

Yeesh, why don't we just re-sign Jody Gerut.

Didn't know about any injuries for Kielty.

Yeesh, why don’t we just re-sign Jody Gerut.

Well, John Hill would probably support it....

One of the guttiest performances I have ever seen in my life was that game in Atlanta that same year by Wood. It's probably why he's at where he's at today, injury-wise, but it was a fabulous effort, and was part of the reason for that season's turnaround. Or was it in Florida? Or both?

hell, I don't remember.

Dave,

Sun Times sports,pp 90, today basically refers to the bench player as being Church. Said 'they just couldn't get it done'.

Put me down for Conine as our RH bat off the bench instead of Murton too.

Okay, WG, I walked into that one. I had no intention of entering a W/P debate. I'd take either pitcher for that one big game, as well as two or three that we have right now, as long as Piniella was managing and not some other guy I'd rather not name.

Ok, now a serious question for you guys.

I'm driving down from Wisconsin for the Sunday night game with my girlfriend. I've seen the Cubs on the road quite a bit over the years but haven't been to Wrigley since I was little. So needless to say I'm excited, and couldn't be happier that the tickets we bought long ago turned out to be a night game on ESPN, in a pennant race, with Glavine going for 300 on the mound. However, I'm not really at all familiar with the area. My girlfriend has relatives living in Lombard so we thought we'd go in there, grab lunch with them, and just take the Cubs Roundtripper to the ballpark. It leaves right from Yorktown Center where we'd likley be at eating anyway, has free parking, and only costs 7.50 a trip per person. It also puts us much much closer to the interstate we need to get back home later that night.

But of course all my info is from the website, so I wondered if anyone had done this before or knew about it, or just in general had any suggestions for my trip - things to do or see, avoid, etc.? Thanks.

WisGrad,
Never done that. I usually park near the lake then hoof it. But traffic is ass, so it sounds like a good idea. Definitely worth the money, though.

Yeah, Wiscgrad - That sounds to me like a good plan. I've always taken the train or walked, depending on where I was staying. I've NEVER tried to drive to anywhere near the park. Always been told not to bother.

Yeah, if you like micro-brews (you are a UW grad, I see) go to Rock Bottom Brewey at Yorktown and you won't have to worry about whether or not the Cubs Roundtripper is a good ride. You'll be plenty numb by then.

Seriously, never used the Roundtripper but they're always pimping it on WGN so I assume it's relatively popular. I usually park near or in the lot at Lawrence and Winthrop and take the Red Line two stops south.

And last time I went, I parked on Halsted between Diversey and Clark. It's just under a mile to the park from there but parking is often easy to come by and there's no permit crap.

I'll agree with Chad on Kielty for a RF platoon and Pinch hitter. Why he might not be the player Murton is, he is more comfortable in that role than Murton and will be more likely to excel in that role. Also Levine is saying W--- will be activated on Friday.

"And last time I went, I parked on Halsted between Diversey and Clark. It’s just under a mile to the park from there but parking is often easy to come by and there’s no permit crap."

Halsted isn't permit parking, but all of the side streets in that area are. Also, Halsted is metered, with a 2 hour time limit. However, you could park in the Century City parking garage on Clark and Diversey for $12, then walk up to the stadium.

Not worth a $50 ticket to try to park on the streets if you're not from the area and don't fully understand all the ridiculous regulations.

If Rockbottom Brewery (the national chain) is your best micro-brew option, you need to come out to the Pacific NW. Jeez, Rockbottom? Holy crap :)

WISC, I haven't taken the Roundtripper, but what I usually do is part at the Cumberland Park and Ride which is right off I-90 just past O'hare. You can take the blue line from there to Addison and then take the bus right to Wrigley. Trip takes about an hour from the car to the ballpark, but then you are right on the Interstate for an easy trip back to Wisconsin.

P.N.Dub, represent!

"How many bases will Reyes steal against the Cubs this weekend? 10? 12?"

Cubster and I discussed this very thing last night.

Looking at the "productive+" arm of Kendall (0-Cubs), and to a close-but-lesser-extent Hill, why not just simply allow the steal with NO play during the series, not unlike a prevent D in football.

In this way, you prevent the runner from reaching 3rd on a poor throw (Theriot saved one of these last night) - or error on the fielder - AND you save potential arm injuries from the catcher.

Face it - Kendall and Hill would have a hard time throwing out Daryl Ward with their lack of accuracy - so why not just let Reyes, et. al. have a base?

Jose Cruz Jr. got DFAed today too, not sure there’s really much of a difference between him and Kielty

Well, both have nagging injury problems. Cruz, Jr has had a bad back since at least 2005. And it seems to stiffen up when he doesn't play every day, which could account for his performance in July, ... 36 AB's .056 .128 .167
when he was coming off the bench almost exclusively.

That'll get you DFA'd.

“How many bases will Reyes steal against the Cubs this weekend? 10? 12?”

He can't steal if he's not on.

Ugh... one of the three on Mack, Jurko, and Harry just said Ryan Braun was a good defender - not sure which one.

There really isn't a requirement that you need to know something about sports in order to be a sports talk radio host?

"He can’t steal if he’s not on."

Excellent point. One I am sure Larry Rothschild is aware of.

But since the rest of the NL has not figured out how to prevent this, the Cubs staff will have their work cut out for them.

Lineup... per ESPN 1000
Soriano - LF
Theriot - SS
Lee - 1b
DeRosa - 3b
Murton - RF
Fontenot - 2b
Jones - CF
Kendall - C
Hill - P

I didn't quite hear which order Jones and Fontenot are in, but they are both in the lineup.

Interesting that we have both of them in against a lefty.

I know dissing the lineup is so last week. But that lineup does kinda suck.

#114: "cubswinthepennant — August 1, 2007 @ 3:29 pm

“How many bases will Reyes steal against the Cubs this weekend? 10? 12?”

He can’t steal if he’s not on.'

Please see post 71.

Any lineup sans Aram sucks. And I'm not doing a reverse chalupa jinx voodoo. I mean it. He has to be hurt, right?

WISC Grad-

Take the EL!!!! Stay out of the traffic, also going on Sunday night-

Lolapalozza at Grant Park
Bears Family Night at Soldiers Field

Downtown Chicago and area will be a nightmare.

I still predict, and I hope I'm wrong, KW throw 5 innings before he returns to the desert.

He's kinda like John the Baptist, comes in spins some heads than mysteriously heads back to the desert.

Well Chad, they've pretty much said that ARam was going to hurt for the rest of the year, so it wouldn't surprise me if he sat a bit more.

Being Jewish, I am not that familiar with the New Testament. That being said, didn't John the Baptist get his head spun...off his body?

Please see post 71.

Well, it should be clear I think your post at 71 was brilliant!

Well thank you, then.

re: post 71.

Why not just extend this to all of the Mets?

Except, "Pee-Hands". He has the coolest batting stance ever.

He has to be hurt, right?

No... not any more hurt than he has been over the last couple of months. The Cubs were pretty clear that they were going to give A-Ram a lot of time off.

That being said, didn’t John the Baptist get his head spun…off his body?

Yes.

Carlos Delgado is welcome to stand on first the entire series. With him on first, he won't score much.

Ramirez would have had today or tomorrow off either way...

Jones actually 300/391/350 vs Moyer in his career, 20 AB's and Moyer has no discernible split vs lefties or righties.

Moyer is awesome against both sides! He's actually done very well against the Cubs, posting a sub 3 ERA I believe. I am going to be so torn here.

btw, Levine reported the Cubs are going to try and pursue a deal for Ryan Church through the waiver process, so says an NSBB blurb.

Pretty clear now Church was the guy Hendry was going after and didn't get.

Wanted to ask AZ Phil if Wood has worked on a decent change - up at this point. Coupled with Wood's fastball, he could be deadly. Watching Hamels feed us a diet of constant change - ups made me hope for Wood's adoption of that pitch.

Fontenot hit lefties/righties about equally in AAA.

Jones with the winning hit last night and Pagan not very good batting righty.

All the righty hitters except Theriot had trouble with Hamels' changeup. Moyers another changeup pitcher.

Piniella has said that a mixed lineup gives a lefty pitcher problems because he can't just pitch to one spot all night.

So lineup may not suck.

John the Baptist got his head lopped off not spun off.

Bad example on my part.

"dave says:

August 1st, 2007 at 11:37 am

For some reason Cubs fans tend to like Kerry Wood more.

It is because people have this absurd idea that Mark Prior is not tough enough. People blamed Prior’s injuries on lack of mental toughness instead of legitimate injuries, even though they had nothing to support such assertions"

No - it is because Wood is the staff leader who took a 80% pay cut to make good with the Cubs this year. The same guy who probably blew out his arm trying to give the Cubs a chance in the '98 playoffs and when he didn't get things done itn the '03 playoffs didn't make a million excuses like most players would he just said 'I choked' (even though he pitched us past the Braves). Zambrano and Prior - did they say they choked? Nope.

That's a pretty crap-tastic lineup. Soft-tossing lefties rule the Cubs. Its written in stone somewhere.

Julio Franco just got released too.

Actually, Marmol has shades of Kerry’s wicked bendy stuff, doesn’t he?

In a word, no.

Watch the pitch Wood threw to Guiterrez in the 7th or 8th to strike him out. No one throws that pitch. No one.

theriot day off throwing things in a weird direction.

fontenot batting 2nd vs. the lefty...cedeno at SS...

murton in RF...jones CF...

"No one throws that pitch. No one."

Probably because that pitch will eventually cause major problems to any pitcher's arm, and Wood was not immune. He stopped throwing that pitch after he first became seriously injured, I believe.

Cedeno and Murton BOTH in the lineup? I really hope that they produce... I really don't think they're going to get many chances...

Why does Hendry have a man crush on Ryan Church? He is an average fielder, baserunner, and hitter. Plus he is a southpaw so it is not like helps our LHP issues. They only way this makes sense if he is going to sign a guy with the last name Deamon to play the OF, so you can run out a Demon-Pagan Church OF.

I would like to know in what why Ryan Church helps this team. Unless this is part one of a two step process.

well Ryan Church is better than Angel Pagan...

Church and Murton, not much difference either, except Church can play all 3 outfield positions. Lose a little on the batting average/OBp with Church, gain some on the power.

pretty sure Church is unhappy in Washington too, he was pretty moody in the past about his playing time.

plus you have Church for the next 3-4 years or so, might make dealing Murton easier.

but I can't imagine Church would make it through waivers unless we're the only team that likes him.

Cards sure could use him for one.

Jordan, if you can find a better beer at Yorktown Center, i'll buy you one. It's all corporate restaurants around there ... typical western burbs crap.

Rob,

I don't think that the Cards would block Church. They are not going to claim him unless they directly want to keep the Cubs from getting him. The Cards know that if the Cubs really wanted him and the Reds have already agreed on a deal, that the Reds would just pull him back.

First, it's the nationals

Second, a player goes through waiver and everyone has a chance to put a claim in. Ryan Church was likely put on waivers today and if not today by the weekend (7 a day is the max). If someone with a worse record than the Cubs put a claim in, they get 48 hours to make a deal, not the Cubs. And since Church makes nothing and I do think there are some teams out there who could use them doing worse than the Cubs, I don't expect him to make it through. I could be wrong of course...

Rob, at this point I don't think people put waiver claims on guys unless they are in it and/or blocking.

"well Ryan Church is better than Angel Pagan…"

Why?

WISCGRAD

The Yorktown bus thing works pretty well. My sister meet me for a game once last year and she used that bus, she really liked it. Although if you are going back to Wisconsin Sunday night going back to Lombard seems kind of silly, just suck it up and drop the $20 for parking.

W. Burbs, blah.

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