50-Game Mark TCR Reader Survey: Question 4

How optimistic do you feel toward the remaining 2009 Chicago Cubs' season?


Chicago Tribune says Z missed the team flight to Atlanta and got chewed out by Lou when he did arrive.


Sullivan, who really seems to dislike many Cubs players on a personal level and takes pot shots at them instead of just reporting facts, added:

"This isn't the first time Zambrano has ignored team rules, but the Cubs appear to be wearying of his act. He's expected to be fined for this latest incident, and may be asked to apologize to his teammates as well."

Luis Vizcaino was cut supposedly because of not following team rules. Seems like there might be a problem of this stuff. Is this Lou starting to lose the team some?

Oh yeah, wouldn't it be nice to have Vizcaino and his 1.54 ERA in the bullpen right about now? Nah, I would rather have Patton and his big 4.2 IP in the past month rotting on the bench.

I don't miss Vizcaino at all, saw him gag up two games on ESPN this year. But, I'd like a real live 25th guy on the roster rather than Patton. His stuff better be the best since Bob Gibson, that's the only reason to keep a single A player hidden on your 25 man.

A lot of Cub players are disliked by the writers. This apparently is not a likeable team. I've seen at least three writers (including Sullivan) say the 07 and 08 Cubs were much easier to work with, since they had guys like Wood and Howry who stood up and dealt with the scribes on a regular basis, whether they were going good or bad. While this team has a few such players (like Lilly and Dempster), from what I can tell most of them are uncooperative.

"they had guys like Wood and Howry who stood up"

Actually, according to Bruce Miles it was MARK DEROSA who regularly talked to the media and gave his teammates cover.

Who cares?

I don't want players that talk nicely with the media. I want players who perform on the field.

wow he may have to apoligize to teammates how bout he throws
a four hitter gives up, one run and pitches nine innings so we dont have to look at our bullshit bullpen on thursday.

if lou called him into the office i would hope he wasnt the only one.

cubs best pitcher= randy wells

I went with somewhat optimistic manly because I feel the Brewers and Cardinals are playing over their heads still. I mean we have played as crappy as we have and were still only 4 games back of a playoff spot.

i agree whole-heartedly with your first sentence, and voted the same way.
i shall now live in terror that the challenge you have thrown at the cubs with your second sentence will be answered with: "you folks ain't seen nuthin' yet".

I think SOME Cards and Brewers and Reds are playing over their heads. I feel somewhat optimistic because I think they have a lot of holes in their teams, just like the Cubs. St. Louis starters, Brewers defense and Manny Parra, Reds offense are all problems. What bugs me is that come trade deadline, two of those three will do something about it. Hendry can't, unless it's a dollar for dollar thing. I think dreams of Peavy/Halladay/anyone worth anything are just that - dreams.

Don't look back, someone may be chasing you

--attributed to Satchel Paige

I'm not too optimistic about the rest of the season, and here's why -

If the Cubs want to match what they did last year during the regular season, they'd have to go 72-40 the rest of the way. Yeah right.

Granted, they might not have to match 97 wins, but it looks like the NL Central is a pretty tough division, despite once again getting absolutely no respect during the preseason.

Stealing Peavy and Adrian Gonzalez during the Pads' fire sale would certainly boost my morale though...

As long as Gregg is the closer, I can't feel optimistic.

He thinks he has a Billy Wagner fastball, as evidenced by last night -- "I will announce my presence with authority!". Flat, 93 mph fastballs over the middle of the plate get hit berry, berry far.

"I will announce my presence with authority!"

Nice Bull Durham reference.

Recent comments

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  • The Cubs had some good runs and nice winning streaks that propelled them to the playoffs. Austin Jackson wasn't part of that. I don't quite understand what it is about Jackson that they are so enamored with.

  • I think the strike zone was very inconsistent, but it's hard to blame the loss on the ump. They had chances and mistake pitches and just couldn't cash in. Lackey ran the ball inside and outside very effectively.

  • Correct. Castro 5th, AJax 6th; I'll edit my lineup post to fix this.

  • Lineup: Fowler, Soler, KB, Rizzo, Castro, AJax, Montero, Hendricks, Russell

  • if he put ajax 1st/2nd in the f'n playoffs he deserves to lose his nearly sure-thing MOY award to terry collins.

  • I believe Castro batting fifth, Ajax (LF) sixth

  • Maddon did not listen to me yesterday re Strop, or EricS on Schwarbs today.

    Wtf is up w/that?!

  • Crunch got his wish - Ajax not hitting 1-2 in the lineup ...

  • I know he's struggles against lefties but Schwarber seems zoned in - hope he starts tonight.

  • Awesome stuff, Phil.

  • listening on ESPN 1000, caller says Bill Welke will be the home plate ump today. Supposedly his reputation is for having an even bigger strike zone than last night's Phil Cuzzi. Some of the issues with bad umpiring come from an inconsistent strike zone. Hoping at least for consistency. Last night's called strike on David Ross was outright embarrassing for Cuzzi.

    That might work out in favor of Kyle Hendricks, who benefits much from a large strike zone.

  • it's kind of mesmerizing to watch
    should Theo add some Ted Abernathy videos for minor league pitching coordinator's use?

    sadly, Ted passed away in 2004 from complications of Alzheimers. I always loved the Cub bullpen trio of Phil Regan, Ted Abernathy and Hank Aguirre. As a kid, I even worked on both Phil Regan (very quirky delivery) and Ted Abernathy (extreme submarine) imitations when throwing a rubber ball against a wall. It wasn't a good imitation unless I could scrape my knuckles off the ground. I'll always have a soft spot in my heart for submariners.

  • HAGSAG: Chris Pieters was sent to instructs to develop his hitting, bunting, and outfield play (he is already a decent first-baseman).  

    Pieters is tall and rangy , a "long-strider" in the same mold as Trey Martin and Rashad Crawford. He is a very patient hitter (unusual for a hitter with his lack of experience) and has an outstanding (almost uncanny) eye at the plate, and he is a fast runner with unusually good baserunning instincts, and he is a good basestealer, too.

  • I doubt we will see Pedro in any more "high leverage" situations this series. With Hendricks and the pen today, we need Bryant-Rizzo-Castro to get going ASAP.

  • One funny thing to see before the game was the two submariner pitchers (David Berg and Corbin Hoffner) playing catch with each other. Both pitchers throw "submarine" even when they play catch, and it's kind of mesmerizing to watch, even for the other players. 

  • CUBSTER: One of the points of emphasis  at "basic" Instructs this year was teaching the position players the art of baserunning and base-stealing, like getting a good primary and seconday lead, reading the pitcher, cutting bases sharply, and different ways to slide to maximize the baserunner's chance to arrive safely.