A Stefani September: Lieber. Angel.. Music.. Hoff-power.

I started a thread regarding the Sun-Times article this morning stating that many of the Cubs September call-ups may be delayed as the Iowa Cubs clinched the playoffs. The I-Cubs will host the Oklahoma RedHawks (Texas Rangers AAA affiliate) starting Sept 3rd in a best of 5 game series. The debate over what value the AAA playoffs bring vs getting a September reward as a call-up for a contending team doesn't get my debating shoes polished but it's interesting to see how the Cubs brass is going to handle this issue.

From the Gordon Wittenmyer notes:

The Class AAA Iowa Cubs are back in the playoffs for the first time in four years, and one small ramification at the big-league level is that a few anticipated September roster additions might stay with Iowa through its playoff series.

The exceptions: Pitchers Jon Lieber (foot) and Angel Guzman (elbow) are expected to be activated from the DL when rosters expand, and lefty hitter Micah Hoffpauir, who's having a monster season, is expected to join the big club right away.

I suppose getting Lieber is an upgrade on last year where Hendry dropped AAA talent on the Orioles for a near worthless Steve Traschel. Angel Guzman just might be another solid compliment in our bullpen. Micah Hoffpauir, well there is a big fan club out there rooting for some September Hoff-Power.

The biggest addition might not get up here until after the AAA playoffs. This is when Koyie Hill gets the call-up to add 5 mph to the pitching staff's fastballs. That's "Serious" music to my ears.



Don't speak
I know just what you're saying

It's all your fault
I've gotta screen my Parachat window

i sense a sept. collapse without k.hill, j.dubois, k.hart, pie, and piggy.

i guess there's always 2009.

sick of this team. bah.


"Oh that's easy, White Sox. I'm not one of those fair weather fans. The Cubs, they're nice, you go to Wrigley Field, you have a beer, the beautiful people out there, people aren't watching the game. It's not serious. White Sox; that's baseball."

Dude has to appeal to the proletariat on the south side to put him in office. No brainer where his allegiance would be.

Barack Obama hates bathed people.

All he needs is to get in the middle of one of the TCR comment wars and he'll find out rather quickly how serious Cubs fans can get.

Yeah, we'll flame him online, but White Sox fans will jump shirtless over the fence and beat him silly.

Nothing says fair weather fan like rooting for a team that hasn't won a championship in a century.

While I don't mind the shot by Obama, you raise a good point. The last place Cubs will outdraw a first place Sox team. How is that fair weather?

I think his statement does prove he doesn't know shit about what's really important in this country (baseball).

As per fair weather, may he's just saying he's not going to jump on the bandwagon just because they're winning. Though, I'm not sure how that makes too much sense, because the White Sox are winning too.

He's clearly unaware of how many Cub fan voters there are in this country. Although, McCain is from Arizona, so whatever.

I don't think he's stance on the Cubs will cost him votes in the swing states.

And I wasn't voting for him either way.

...never would have guessed.

But Chad, he IS the gay rights candidate...

But is he the mullet rights candidate?

I actually think it was kind of a telling statement. He grew up on the South Side and was a Sox fan. It would be easy for him to say he likes the Cubs because they have more fans and are doing well. Or he could say some of the usual bullshit like: "I'm a Chicagoan first and I wish the best for both teams." But he disses the cross-town rival in favor of his team. As much as we disagree with it personally, we would hate it if a candidate were saying he were a Cubs fan and then said he likes the Sox.

I agree, but he didn't need to criticize the Cubs in order to declare himself a Sox fan. Oh wait, that's the very definition of a Sox fan. Nevermind.

But correct me if I'm wrong here Sandy, but haven't the Cubs consistently outdrawn the White Sox since the 50's?

I think that is Obama's (and Sox fans') point.

"Cub fans don't care about good baseball -- even when the team sucks, people go to drink beer, have fun and check out the babes."

I have never really understood why going to the ballpark to enjoy yourself is a bad thing, but it seems to be a point of honor with Sox fans that they recognize bad baseball (by not showing up) and thus are much mroe knowledgable baseball fans.

He did NOT grow up on the South Side. He lived there from 1981-2000 except for the three years he spent at Harvard.

He still does live there...

Well, he moved there when he was almost 24, and I doubt he lives there now. He went to law school in MA when he was 27. He probably lives in a bus or in DC. I am guessing Cabrini Green wasn't filled with too many guys with degrees from Columbia.

I don't even consider him an American. The fact that he has an opinion on the Cubs/Sox rivarlry speaks more to where he thinks his votes come from than from hanging out with the homies in front of the tube on a Saturday evening.

Actually, if you look at his history, all he's been doing for the last 6 years is running for office.

And we've officially fallen of the edge. Nobody cares if you consider him American.

So any news on Angel? Anyone?

Well, he moved there when he was almost 24, and I doubt he lives there now

Huh? He lives in Hyde Park, which is part of the South Side.

I am guessing Cabrini Green wasn't filled with too many guys with degrees from Columbia.

Cabrini Green isn't part of the South Side.

I don't even consider him an American.


. The fact that he has an opinion on the Cubs/Sox rivarlry speaks more to where he thinks his votes come from than from hanging out with the homies in front of the tube on a Saturday evening.

No... it speaks to the fact that he has lived in Chicago for many years, he was a State Representative from Chicago, and he now is a Senator from Illinois.

On a side note... what are the South Side projects down south of The Cell? The Robert Taylor homes? I forget; it's been too many moons since I lived in Chicagoland.

Do the police still route departing Sox fans down past the projects after the games? That was always a beautiful thing.

Yes, Robert Taylor homes.

And they have been torn down.


When you're a state senator, you do that from your home district? When you're a US Senator, you do that from your home state? Do you think President Bush lives in Texas? Do you think the Clintons are die hard Mets fans?

Facts: they're a bitch.

Born in Hawaii, to a non-American father. Spent his primary education years (you know, when the rest of us were saying the Pledge of Allegiance every day) in Indonesia, while his mother was living with a 2nd non-American.

I just like my presidential candidates to be 'Americans' (not white). Born and raised in America by 2nd generation Americans. I also don't like them to be panderers (in the Gorgian sense) but that's another story.

*Minor note from the Wikipedia article on Gorgias "He says that rhetoric is to government what cooking is to medicine"

Obama '08

When you're a state senator, you do that from your home district?

Actually... in Illinois, Senators and Reps spend more time at home than they do in session.

When you're a US Senator, you do that from your home state?

You spend half of your time at home, and half of your time in DC. He lives in Chicago. It is pretty clear. And Barack is home, in Chicago, when the US Senate is not in session, and also travels home every weekend.

Facts are only a bitch when you get them wrong. And you are getting them wrong. You were wrong about Cabrini Green. You are wrong about him not living on the South Side. You are wrong about how much time state senators spend at home.

Facts: they're a bitch.

Spent his primary education years (you know, when the rest of us were saying the Pledge of Allegiance every day) in Indonesia

He only spend a couple of years in Indonesia.

But as you say, facts: they're a bitch.

I just like my presidential candidates to be 'Americans'

This is absurd. Barack Obama is American. He was born and raised in America by Americans.

So what is your definition of American? Must never live outside the country? Must have two-second generation American parents?


He spent years 6-10 in Indonesia. He was in US schools in Hawaii (part of America) from 5th grade on - saying the pledge of allegiance (not that that should really matter at all for his policies). His mom's second husband only went back to Indonesia because the government made all students studying abroad come back - he wanted to stay in the US. If it makes you feel any better, he worked for fucking Mobil Oil while he was there - you really can't get any more "American" (read Republican) than that.

Fact - Obama has lived and traveled around the world, and that is a GOOD thing.

Fact - His mothers parents are descended from European colonists, mostly from England, who settled in the American colonies in the 1600s.

The idea that you vote on some silly standard that both parents of a candidate have to be 2nd generation Americans, considering we are a country founded by immigrants, and that a candidate can have never lived abroad while growing up sickens me. I'm guessing you won't be sending your children to study abroad? If only people actually voted on what policies they thought would be best to run the country...

If only people actually voted on what policies they thought would be best to run the country...

Obama forms his 'policy' based on whatever he thinks the particuarly audience wants to hear. Decriminalize marajuana? Sure, if you're speaking to college students, but says he's against it when he's speaking to an older audience. Immediate withdrawl of troops from Iraq? That's responsible. But now, he's just talking about lowering the presence, or a 16 month withdrawl, or deferring his right to make a decision when he's President.

The guy is a panderer, and people who defend his 'policies' as what is best for the coutnry is the height of naivete. Yeah, I will take an American raised by Americans rather than some carbet bagger politician who's more interested in acquiring power and money than what is in the best interest of the country. Call me crazy, call me un-American. Call me someone who at least knows how many states there are.

The guy is a panderer

The guy is a politician - they all pander.

rather than some carbet bagger politician who's more interested in acquiring power and money than what is in the best interest of the country.

Again... so he is just like every other politician.

But you do know that he actually has pretty clear and firm policies, don't you? Or are you like Chad who likes to pretend Obama doesn't have policies so he doesn't actually have to do the work to learn about them.

Yeah, I will take an American raised by Americans

Again... he is an American, and he was raised by Americans.

Oh... and well done ignoring the facts that you were wrong on.

Naivete? Your naivete comes out when you have to resort to names such as "carpet bagger" and continue to display a bias towards Obama because his family background doesn't quite match your own. This is 2008. It's ok to be black. It's ok to be a woman. It's ok to be gay. It's ok to have college degrees. It's ok to have lived abroad. It's ok to be a child of an immigrant.

Also, for politicians seeking power and money see exhibit a) Bush, and exhibit b) McCain.

If you want to keep voting for old, white, rich, socially conservative men, who keep bringing us the same policies that continue to weaken our country, then fine, go for it - there is nothing anyone on a Cubs blog can do to convince you otherwise. But we reap what we sow. All of those people who voted for Bush because they wanted to have a beer with him and because he isn't different and is conservative like they are, are the ones hurting the most. The economy is killing them and Iraq is killing their kids. But because they think gays have cooties and abortion is the devil they keep voting against their own interest. It's quite sad really.

We have a douchebag contest winner!


Good thing I distrust McCain more than I distrust Sox fans.

But yeah, I'm not sure what "fair weather" he's referring to.

Remember though, it wasn't always like this! The Cubs drew below league average during the 1970s and early 1980s. I mean they averaged about 12,000 people a game. 1984 was the first year since 1972 they were even above league average for attendance. They then held right around league average until 1998. That year they jumped from 27K average to 32K. In 2003 it jumped again from 33K to 37K, and we've been sold out pretty much every game since.

Granted the capacity of Wrigely changed a few times over the years. But while the die-hard fans are by no means fair weather, if you look at it historically, this is a relatively new phenomenon:


A bit of topic (politics), but has anyone actually heard how Angel has looked?...aside from adorably baby-faced?

That hurt my brain.

Heh... then just imagine what it will do to Chad's brain.

According to WSCR

Zell said ownership bids down to five including-
Canning Family

Also instant replay could be inplace as soon as Thursday.

I can't believe they're even considering adjusting any call up plans because of minor league playoffs! Are you kidding me.

On a side note, have you guys seen this web site.



all the call-up plans do is make it harder to find a seat on the bench and make the locker room more crowded. They'd be lucky to get an AB or an inning in the time the playoffs in AAA end and when they will get called up. Does anyone really think Lou is going to go to someone he hasn't used all year in the middle of a pennant race?

The one guy he might use is Hoffpauir to pinch-hit and he is getting called up right away. Those bullpen arms that are going to wait wouldn't be used for anything other than blowouts. 

Wait... you mean that the might Koyie Hill will not be playing everyday?

We are going to be stuck with Geovany Soto?

Our pitchers are going to continue to suck...


i don't know why this won't show as a reply

Holy shit, what's up with that tongue?


I'll betcha those two girls would like a little captain in them!

Is that what you're calling yourself these days?


Zell said ownership bids down to five including-
Canning Family

I think George W. Bush should get back in the biz by buying the Cubs. He can send the pesky Brewers to Guantanamo Bay and he can name Pujols an enemy combatant.

Of course, the Cubs books would be in the red in a matter of months, but who cares. Deficit spending yee haw.

If anyone is actually seriously upset by Obama's comments, you should lose your right to vote. (Kidding, sort of).

Anyway, his point is what every single Sox Fan in Chicago always says. People don't go to Wrigley for the Baseball, they go to drink and have a party and be seen, or whatever.

Of course, that doesn't account for the fact that the Cubs do significantly better in TV ratings...but Sox fans don't pay attention to facts anyway.

I, for one, take great confidence when a Presidential hopeful repeats and believes generalizations that are made about specific groups of people. A man who reinforces stereotypes is exactly who I want to lead our country.

*stir stir stir*

The biggest addition might not get up here until after the AAA playoffs. This is when Koyie Hill gets the call-up to add 5 mph to the pitching staff's fastballs. That's "Serious" music to my ears.

Dr. Joseph, I keep think of Koyie after seeing Z go through a rough slump recently. I remember he caught Z the next game after the Barret incident and worked off of Z fastballs for most of the game. Z had an excellent game, but recently I haven't noticed him hitting anywhere near mid 90s as much or consistently as last year.

Your thoughts...

H Rod: the Koyie Hill isn't quite the same as what we saw last June-July.

Yet, he's a medical miracle that he's catching at all at this point.

Here's the link from Scout.com (hope you can read it as I think it's a subscription site)


Last October, Hill accidently severed the pinkie and ring fingers from his right hand with a table saw...
The blade completely cut off the pinkie finger on his right hand, and left the ring finger hanging on by the skin near the base of the joint. It also cut deeply into the middle knuckle of Hill’s middle finger and lacerated his thumb.

...the rest of the story details his return to AAA, so a call-up should be quite an emotional story for Hill. I expect we will see him in Sept.

As for Z...whatever is going on is probably something with his mechanics but he goes thru funky periods of badness and pulls out of them just as mysteriously. I doubt it has to do with who is catching him as Soto seems to know what he's doing (he's rarely criticized for game calling ability). Blanco similarly is considered to be a good at calling a game.

Here at TCR, Koyie was attributed with magical abilities in handling the pitching staff last year...hence the +mph fastball reference. His inability to hit a lick forced the Jason Kendall trade although Soto arrived on the scene for good in his September callup and as they say...the rest is history.

It would be no big deal for the Cubs to recall Pie, Hoffpauir, Wuertz, and Hart, and select K. Hill right at the start of September, if they feel the additions would be of benefit (and they quite possibly could, too, especially in an extended extra innning game where a team can run out of position players and/or pitchers).

While the AAA Iowa Cubs are in the PCL playoffs and are guaranteed to be playing at least until September 6th (if not beyond), AA Tennessee is out of contention for the Southern League playoffs, and with the Tennessee regular season ending next Monday, the Cubs could very easily promote the four Tennessee players who spent time at Iowa previously this season (CF Sam Fuld, 1B-LF-RF Jake Fox, RHRP Dumas Garcia, and RHRP Gregory Reinhard) to Iowa on Tuesday (the PCL playoffs start on Wednesday) to replace Pie, Hoffpauir, Wuertz, and Hart, plus Tennessee catchers Chris Robinson (who played for Team Canada in the Olympics), Mark Reed, or Welington Castillo could replace K. Hill on the Iowa roster and back-up Tony Richie.

BTW, besides Iowa, the only other Cubs minor league team with a legitimate shot at making its league playoffs is the Daytona Cubs (Florida State League).

Recent comments

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  • AZ Phil, has Nathan showed up in Mesa yet? Thanks.

    Hagsag 1 hour 28 min ago view
  • Eickhoff looks like a good young pitcher. Lets steal him!

    Hagsag 1 hour 29 min ago view
  • Manny Rondon faced 13 batters ... and got 10 to K. Not a bad day's work.

    Eric S 11 hours 10 min ago view
  • With several other Cubs hitters bailing out on curves today I think overall it wasn't being seen well. It for sure looked silly but a good breaking pitch coming at you and then breaking down isn't the easiest thing to see and has made many hitters look silly. Also Soler should have more walks this year but for quite a few called strikes that were actual balls and even the called strike he bailed on was borderline.

    johann 14 hours 8 min ago view
  • it's not like we're talking about a guy who's never had issues with pitch selection and seeing the ball over here. we're talking about a guy who has some rather legendary swing-and-misses at breaking stuff who's been exploited low. going forward it's worth paying attention to seeing if he can be exploited inside, too. he seriously bailed out of the box on a called strike. sure it was a good curve, but he obviously didn't see that well at all.

    crunch 14 hours 20 min ago view
  • It would seem like he is figuring it out now and it's really coming together. Really happy for him. Joe was really protecting him from the 3rd time through the order, but as you allude to, he is earning trust to go deeper.

    Wondering if has potential to become a #3 pitcher? His current stats certainly support it.

    The E-Man 14 hours 29 min ago view
  • That doesn't count b/c CRUNCH didn't see it on his 60" HDTV 5 times in replay.

    I have seen many players "bail out" when the ball looked like it was gonna hit them.

    Especially with the advent of the splitter and pitchers that can really get the ball to dance. Marmol, Sutter, Pedro Martinez, Curt Schilling, Derek Lowe, Smoltz, Arrietta...

    These guys have made the best bail out only for the ball to come over the plate and be called a strike.

    No shame in that. The same way players whiff hard enough to cause them to drill a hole in the ground from spinning.

    The E-Man 14 hours 34 min ago view
  • a 60" TV with slow-motion replay and multiple looks on that replay helps...a lot...

    it's one thing to shy away like he did the 2nd time, it's another to bail out of the box on a called strike. that happened in the 1st one he pulled away from. he misjudged that one by a foot or so...

    crunch 14 hours 53 min ago view
  • Good Hendricks sure is fun to watch. He was hitting all his corners today and the Phillies couldn't do anything with his changeup.

    johann 15 hours 29 min ago view
  • Bryant and I believe Zobrist both did that too.

    johann 15 hours 46 min ago view
  • Soler BB acumen and plate awareness is excellent. Not unusual for even the best players to react as if they were about to hit them, "even though they weren't that close" from your vantage point sitting on your deck, or wherever.

    The E-Man 15 hours 48 min ago view
  • soler vs inside breaking balls is scary.

    he's had 2 inside curve balls today where he reacted as if they were about to hit him even though they weren't that close...one he bailed out of the box on, it was a called strike.

    crunch 16 hours 6 min ago view
  • j.urias optioned back to AAA...guess we wont be seeing him in the LAD series.

    crunch 16 hours 13 min ago view
  • so is him actually getting 2 hits in a game (2 doubles!)...first time he's even been on base 2 times in a game since 9 games ago on his 3/4, 1bb day.

    im ready for him to at least look like a 2-slot hitter since he's gonna be slotted there no matter what he does.

    crunch 17 hours 9 min ago view
  • That Heyward move to avoid Bryant's ball hit at him was a thing of beauty too.

    johann 17 hours 27 min ago view
  • 9 pitches in and this game already rules.

    HR, double...bryant's turn (who came out to a Kris Kross song for some horrible, horrible reason).

    ...2 run inning...zoobrest hitting streak at 14.

    crunch 17 hours 31 min ago view