I Predict...

Swami Murph will predict tomorrow that Todd Wellemeyer will retire!

OK, so it's just a tired old radio bit. Still, like a bad penny (I said BAD not Brad), Former 1969 Left field Bleacher Bums  mad Bugler (maybe it was a Coronet?),  Mike Murphy has returned to the Chicago airwaves on Sundays at 9AM. He's got a new gig with his old sidekick, Fred Huebner, on ESPN - 1000 (listen live link). ESPN has more WSCR refugees than the Orioles have ex-Cubs...although not by much (Orioles lineup today featured Jake Fox, Felix Pie, Ceasar Izturis, Kevin Gregg and DLee, not to mention almost Cub Brian Roberts).

Murph will host a regular show every Sunday from 9-1, bringing his 20 plus years of radio presence, dating back to the WLS "Fan Talk" days ("just fans talking to fans"). "Never been in a locker room Murph", he was never was afraid to read the tough questions from his yellow pad to Cub GM Jim Hendry or replay some of the great play-by-play calls from Jack Brickhouse or reminisce about his playing prowess in 16-inch softball with Mr. Cub, Ernie Banks.

...more after the jump

Murphy was embroiled in a legal despute with CBS and WSCR over a restrictive covenant issue. He has been off the air since June 2009 when his show was replaced by Dan McNeil. To me it was WSCR's final and not so subtle attempt to remove the featured hosts that were Cub fans. Although remaining host, Brian Hanley is a Cub fan, it's not like he wears his Cubness on display. Hanley usually expresses his embarrassment at being a Cub fan which suits WSCR (aka wsux) just  fine.  The catch was that Murphy wasn't fired and was still under contract with CBS Radio thru May 2010 (and apparently he kept getting paid till then). After the contract expired he filed  a class action suit vs CBS radio  which owns WSCR because the contract claimed to block local radio employment vs competitors for 6 months after contract expiration (and 3 months before expiration). The suit has yet to be resolved and as it's a class action suit, I presume there are other CBS radio personnel that were put in employment limbo with similar contracts that date back as far as Jan 2002.

Even though Murph's bits get repetitive and his theories (I like your "angle" sez Murph) are usually off the deep end, I admit I missed his Cub loving presence on Chicago radio. Since Ron Santo is gone, nobody on radio leaves his Cub emotions on his sleeve like Murph.

I'm sure many of the radio bits will be back. I do Hope Reverend Watkins is back too..."The Cubs don't have to be getting better, the other teams just have to get worse". Project .500 couldn't get a better motto.

P.S. Murph... Don't tell anyone this but I was secretly predicting you were going to be Pat Hughes sidekick. I can smell Swami Murph and Swami Fred now {{dons noseplugs}}


per E-man:


He has been on for two weeks now, IIRC.

I listened to him last week.

Its just like "old days" though.

Good Sunday baseball talk show.

Miss a little, miss a lot.

If the kool-aid is a little too sweet (or sour) on Murph's show...

Barry Rozner and Matt Spiegel do a nice baseball show Sunday mornings over at WSCR.

I agree QM.

Jessie Rogers, a former co-host of the show is an idiot and infamous for asking the Cubs former reliever Antonio Alfonseca about his six-finger hands, "So, how did you get those? Were you born with them, or what?"

Last week, the same moron when talking about the Atlanta Hawks fans quipped, "I don't know about the Hawks fans there, if they are interested or not. I have no idea if they have had a playoff game there before..."

Guess he never heard of Dominique Wilkens.

This is someone getting PAID at a sports talk radio station in America's #3 market!

Jessie Rogers might not follow much basketball because he's the beat writer covering the Blackhawks.

He has only had that gig for one or two years after jumping to WMVP from WSCR.

He touts himself as a "Chicago Guy", and as a sports talk show host, to not know that in fact the Bulls crushed HOF's 'Nique's Hawks Playoff team is pretty bad. Its not like he is a 25 year old new on the scene.

Not only did they lose to the Bulls in '93 and '97 (Jordan years), Wilkins is a TV analyst for the Hawks.

Rogers is in the "media business". He is an idiot and I scratch my head every time he is on the air wondering how he got the job.

In thinking about it now, I think it was Mike North. Another imbecile.

I was never a Mike North fan. Guys who blow their own horn have always pissed me off, hence, I dislike North, Coppock, etc.

Murphy might be a goofball but he doesn't seem to take himself too seriously. I can see people not liking him, but I can't see anyone hating him. He's like a fly, sometimes annoying but basically harmless.

Speaking of Chet Coppock, Garry Meier, who is on WGN now, told a funny story a while back about how when he was at The LOOP and Coppock would come on after Meier (and Dahl), one day Meier and Dahl screwed with Coppock's microphone, I think they said they rigged it to the light came on like it was on the air, but it wasn't. So Coppock started his show, talking into the mic for several mins, and nothing was heard. They had to go to a commercial, figured out what was wrong, and Coppock started the show again, repeating everything he had said word-for-word, because, as Meier said, he scripted most of his show.

m.fontenot is not a very good SS...

I'm already shocked the Giants haven't added a real shortstop to the roster, even if it's just one of the many good gloves on AAA rosters who barely hit.

watching the sf/col game..."i wonder what ben petrick is up to" (former COL catcher) popped into my mind.

last i heard he retired years ago after being diagnosed with parkinson's disease. i was wonder how he's doing, etc...

it turns out it was a misdiagnosis and he actually has lyme disease.

what's even freakier is he's about to be on a PBS documentary about lyme disease.


i guess it's better than parkinson's, but that's a hell of a swerve on diagnosis.

I don't think that WSCR got rid of him because he was a Cub fan. More likely that he happened to be a Cub fan who was also unfortunately a whiney moronic twit who drove listeners like me away.

BTW, who's wife did Coppock sleep with (alriiiight, everybody) such that a washed up has been like Murph gets a show before him? I mean, Coppock is washed up too, but once upon a time he did have something approximating talent.

Yeah Murph is hard to listen to.

He's famous for reading emails that agreed with that were sent by him.

No shit. I still can't hear the name McPhail without also hearing the clown noises in my head. Murph had his moments, like when he was asking Hendry if it would be a good idea to 'back up the truck' and they got into a heated exchange. I think this is about when Murph stopped getting good interviews. There is a delicate nuance to journalistic probing and Murph just doesn't have it.

I remember that interview.

Coppock's a tool!

Coppock did Talkin' Baseball with Bruce Levine about two years ago or so. Couldn't stand him so I understand why espn radio got rid of him.

I thought Coppock and North were doing the internet radio/telecast thing that went bankrupt after that.

Yeah, I think they both were with that company, and the owner had some financial issues and they were raided by the IRS or FBI, if I recall the story correctly.

Last I heard, North had popped up on Comcast Sports Net in the mornings, and I think has moved to CBS. Dan Jiggets is/was with him. That might have been before the internet radio thing, I'm not sure.

North off the air, thank God.

Coello has been starting and improving gradually. Yesterday he pitched a beaut--8 innings, no runs, 4 hits, no walks, 7 strikeouts. He looks like the only pitcher at Iowa who wants that fifth-starter gig, and he may give Doug Davis an argument.

I-Cubs won Coello's game 1-0 in the 10th on a home run by Brad Snyder. All five Cub teams, from Peoria up, won yesterday.

IF you haven't checked lately, the Wrigley Field Cam now has HD sound.

nice shoes soriano.

great outing by dumpster...crappy one for the bats.

2 runs given up by dumpster. he was taken out of the game for a bat in the bottom 7th.

81 pitches, 7ip 5h 0bb 3k...2er

...and yet another quality ninja outing.

1ip 0h 0bb 1k

he's packing a 2.33 era and a 1.34 whip...lot of walks, though.

On the Carlos Marmol 7-step reliever success plan

Nice. Ninja gets dogged a lot when he does poorly, but nobody has really said anything (until now) about his recent work. He's been doing a helluva job.

Understandably, it will probably take some time for him to build up some fan confidence. The Ninja jersey's probably aren't yet flying off the shelves.

all i see out of ninja is a guy that shows up in shape to play, works, doesn't bitch, and doesn't seem to have "baggage."

he's just overpaid and not very good. his lack of upper level development is unfortunate, but it doesn't seem to be a result of laziness or lack of focus.

He's obviously been pitching better, but his xFIP is still essentially 5. No HR's allowed and a BABIP of .182 aren't sustainable trends.

I haven't seen any of the games where he's done well, but his problem has been that he didn't have a swing an miss pitch and poor control. He is getting some strikeouts lately, so I have to wonder if something is changed, or if it's just a case of a blind squirrel.

When they called him up in 2008, his K pitch was an unpredictable splitter. The problem with that was that he had absolutely no control of it, and that showed in 2009 and 2010.

Well, I was just looking at his 2008 appearances this morning and if Gameday can be believed, he wasn't throwing splitfingers in 2008. He was relying on his four seamer almost exclusively by the end of the year and hitting 97-98 on the gun.

He added a cutter last year and this. And, maybe as a result of that, his fastball has lost 2-3 MPH. But in his last appearance they have him mixing a 4 seam 93 MPH fastball, cutter, slider and changeup and doing it effectively.

Has anyone? mentioned that back in 2008 Samardzija was used as a bridge between the SP and the tandem of Carlos Marmol and Kerry Wood and now that Wood is back he's been recast in the same role. Maybe Wood (who also is using a cutter more often) has something to do with his success this year. I wish our braindead media would ask him.

I think people and Gameday were calling it a changeup in 2008.

Murph was one reason (the other being Mike North) that I couldn't stand listening to the Score for years. Now I'd much rather listen to Spiegel and Rozner (despite him constantly interrupting Spiegel) than dealing with Murph.

The score is almost always respectful of their Cub listeners. I like listening to them. The afternoon show... the 'by cracky' thing is decidedly annoying, however.

Boers and Bernstein used to bug the fuck out of me - similar to Bob and Tom who always seem to be laughing - but they're generally better than Mac/Carmen,Jurko & Harry. I find myself laughing while listening to them, so I guess they're growing on me. Kinda like tallest midget to be the best afternoon show

Milton Bradley DFA'd.


MLBTR also says Rosenthal thinks the Cubs are in position to be contenders the next couple of years and should extend Hendry. I think they should extend Hendry a plank to walk into Lake Michigan with. This is not going to be a contending team the next couple of years unless they do something insane like sign Pujols or Fielder, AND add additional very good players beyond that, and have some kids develop fast and contribute.

Everyone in the NL Central is in position to contend if they add (or keep) Fielder or Pujols. The division just isn't that good.

Hmm. This offseason we lose ARam, Pena, Fukudome, Wood. Dempster will most certainly exercise his option because he's not likely to get $14 mil on the open market.

So we need a 1b, 3b, possibly a RF if they haven't let Colvin or Jackson get some regular AB's by the end of this year, plus we need to either resign Wood or replace him. I don't see any in house candidate ready to be a rh late inning rp.

Regardless, even if they sign Fielder or Pujols, they still need to plug someone in at 3b who can drive in runs, and the free agent market doesn't exist, other than ARam. Whoever replaces ARam is most certainly going to drop off in run production, perhaps a big dropoff.

We still have old players in LF, CF, a huge question mark at 2b, and fun but inconsistent SS play. Oh, and a good hitting catcher who is stuck batting 8th.

Not to mention no starting pitching depth.

I'm not seeing this team compete for the division.

you mean .700 OPS Ramirez? (.745 last year)

yeah, how will they ever find that replacement? Not to sound too VA Phil, but I think Marquez Smith could do that now.

Did someone ring?

Smith is one possibility, though he's off to a slow start (again?) at Iowa. He looked great in a few at bats in ST but I can't say I ever saw him hit a ball to center or right. He may have a pull-ish tendency that doesn't play in the majors, especially for a small guy.

Tennessee has Vitters at third plus two other guys, Flaherty and LeMahieu, who play third occasionally. Of the three, LeMahieu hits consistently. LeMahieu leads that team in doubles, by the way.

Wait and see if Vitters can get himself straightened out this season. I'm not making predictions, but I'm hopeful.

Statistically Vitters is doing fine - just a streak of bad luck.

Quade recently stated how he was struggling w/PT for Colvin.

Wondering who is the next AA or AAA lefty in line to take his place if /when he gets sent down? Jackson?

Well, they're not going to send Colvin down and call up Jackson, who would have the same problem Colvin does. More likely one of the AAA retreads or Aducci.

this is a nice way saying he's been a bust this year

I agree, if Colvin continues on with a .125 BABIP, he's not going to be able to stay in the majors. His K and BB rates are actually improved this year.

No they're not

2010: 25.4% K, 7.6% BB
2011: 25.0% K, 9.4% BB

Pretty sure that a lower K rate and a higher BB rate is an improvement.

Better start engraving that Silver Slugger award!

maybe more then one game a week would help?

Should be actively looking to move Fuku and Byrd, so they can bring up Jackson as well.

Suggestion: just watch the Iowa Cubs instead.

I-Cubs, no thanks, but I'd gladly watch the Smokies or the D-Cubs over the Cubs. In fact, I drove a long way to see Tennessee play recently.

Uncle Milty DFA by Mariners

I'm just saying, if the Cubs are looking for a little extra offense off the bench... I mean he's an option and he's available.

Hits from the correct side of the plate too, yes? Sign him up - i think the bleacherites would appreciate his passion for the game and he'd keep the locker room motivated.

More time on his hands to choke out and threaten the women in his life.

Next stop is California State Prison.

Recent comments

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  • I am right there with you closing in on 60.

    I don't care that much about "mortgaging" one player who is not only blocked by two guys, but is not ready to hit the majors for at least a couple years.

    There is no reason why this team, this year, can't have a real shot at something NONE of us have experienced.

    Further, I don't feel that even if they fall short that they have ruined their farm system.

    I have made my opinion clear here, with others, Warren was shit on the Cubs save one spot start.

    The E-Man 29 min 20 sec ago view
  • Trading for Warren, Warren sucking, getting Warren back for Chapman plus 3 prospects, sounds like Revenge of The Yankees on the former Boston executive. Old rivalries never die.

    I pray to the heavens above Chapman doesn't suck for some reason, or he'll be booed out of town faster than a Todd Hundley revival meeting.

    Old and Blue 36 min 59 sec ago view
  • I'm kind of nostalgic for the Schwarber-for-Miller rumors.

    Brick 48 min 43 sec ago view
  • This offseason, after some ridiculous playoff run and Chapman saving every game from here until the end of the postseason striking out 27/9innings, I welcome anyone to quote this thread and call me a dummy: I hate this trade, and my hate is 2 parts Chapman makes this team less likeable and 1 part that's a ridiculous overpay for 30 regular season innings and, at tops, 10 postseason innings. Already hoping they don't extend him.

    Charlie 50 min 32 sec ago view
  • btw...Thanks AZ Phil. I'm really enjoying your take on this trade.

    Cubster 1 hour 12 min ago view
  • I'm a bit disappointed on the Warren experience. Essentially they gave Castro away for crickets (OK, well they signed Zobrist with the Castro salary dump). Otherwise one might look at it as Chapman for Castro and our #1 minors prospect (Torres) + McKinney/Crawford. Seems pricey for a 2 month rental. We will see if this price tag is that steep in a relative way based on the remaining deadline deals for relievers.

    Cubster 1 hour 13 min ago view
  • Yep. One of the great things about this team (in addition to being really good at baseball) was the "likable" factor. Feels a bit different now. Who knows...maybe Chapman will be the king of the dance parties.

    billybucks 1 hour 22 min ago view
  • Here are some possible corresponding minor league moves we might see in the aftermath  of the Chapman trade: 

    SOUTH BEND to MYRTLE BEACH: OF Donnie Dewees and INF Bryant Flete  

    EUGENE to SOUTH BEND: OF Robert Garcia and INF Vimael Machin 

    There is really no reason to replace Billy McKinney at Tennessee because both Chris Coghlan and Jorge Soler are doing their rehab at Tennessee.  

    And there are plenty of pitchers at Iowa. No need to replace Warren at AAA. .  

    Arizona Phil 1 hour 42 min ago view
  • I am 70 years old. The Cubs last played in the World Series in 1945. I was born in 1946. I hate to lose a prospect like Torres, but when the opportunity is there to get that World Series ring, you go for it. This was the idea in stock piling all this young talent. I would like to see Reddick added now and the Cubbies should be done.

    Hagsag 2 hours 12 min ago view
  • I would expect Richard to accept an optional assignment because based on how he's played this season, there is a decent chance that he won't find work elsewhere. Rather stay and potentially get a ring. Same goes for Coghlan since he's struggled mightily this year.

    Edwards should not go down. He's pitched very well and Maddon is very impressed with him. I would expect Grimm to go down for Cahill so he can get back on track (he's pitched better in July, but he's not getting enough appearances).

    chitownmvp01 2 hours 16 min ago view
  • chitownmvp01: Indeed Clayton Richard would seem to be odd man out once Chapman reports, but Richard might accept a minor league assignment if he is promised a return to Chicago on 9/1 when MLB Active List rosters expand (Richard has minor league ioptions left).

    Arizona Phil 2 hours 19 min ago view
  • The only player in the deal that would cause me a second thought is Gleyber Torres.

    McKinney and Crawford are decent prospects but both are redundant/replaceable in the system and Warren was really only a middle-reliever or #6 starter, so to me it's really just Torres for Chapman.

    Arizona Phil 2 hours 39 min ago view
  • There is no Comp pick for players traded mid-season. 2+ months of Chapman is it.

    mbauer 2 hours 42 min ago view
  • to get one of the best you have to give up one/some of your best...but it's a bit painful to watch the system's best prospect walk for any 2-3 month rental, especially one that's not an everyday player.

    crunch 2 hours 44 min ago view
  • I assume Chapman will replace Richard on the roster, but who goes down when Cahill gets activated? Maybe Grimm?

    And when Soler and Coghlan get healthy, how do they fit them on the roster when they're ready to be activated?

    chitownmvp01 2 hours 47 min ago view
  • We are giving up a lot, but it's not like we're trading Addison Russell for 2+ months of Jason Hammel. When impact players become available, they are going to cost you. The other bids could also have been high.

    Having Chapman as a rental is potentially less disruptive than having him come in with an extension in place. 

    CTSteve 2 hours 49 min ago view