The Chicago Cubs—Your 2008 NL Central Executioners

Out of the corner of my eye last night, the one corner that wasn't marveling at how grotesquely obese Prince Fielder has become, I noticed what was happening to a couple of our National League Central friends:

The Cardinals, who were officially eliminated from the division race last night, were continuing to get their brains beaten in (six straight losses, five straight road losses, and 10 road losses in their last 11 tries), and the Astros were continuing to not hit (a 5-1 loss at Florida, which means Houston has scored two runs in three games).

Most everyone agrees that the Cards overachieved all season long and that they haven't been viable contenders for quite a while. However, if LaRussa & Co. had any flickering hopes, the Cubs went a very long way toward snuffing them out with their series win in St. Louis last week.

As for the Astros...

well, we all know about the Astros. They were baseball's hottest team, a fairy tale in the making, until Hurricane Ike, No-Hit Carlos, and One-Hit Ted got hold of them. Now they've lost three in a row for the first time in 56 days, and they find themselves three games behind the Wild Card-leading Mets. Suddenly their season is a lot less sunny.

All of that is to say nothing of how the Cubs have contributed to the Brewers' misery. While Milwaukee's September tailspin had nothing to do directly with the Cubs, their spirits couldn't have been lifted by watching the events taking place on their own home field Sunday night and Monday afternoon. Then, when they do go face-to-face with the Cubs, their previously untouchable pitching ace gets beaten, and now they get to read about how much the Cubs enjoyed using their lockerroom and even THEIR WHIRLPOOL TUB!

Yes, life in the NL Central is beautiful.

Just beautiful.

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Comments

Actually I guess the Brewers' spirits were lifted a bit by watching the Cubs beat the Astros Monday, they certainly weren't saddened by it.

Practically speaking, you're right. I was referring more to the indiginity I imagine they felt seeing the Cubs celebrating on their field.

Correct me if I'm wrong here, but the Cubs magic number to clinch home field advantage is 5.

Right?

for once, you are correct about something.

zing

I hadn't noticed this posted elsewhere, but Cubs 2009 Schedule is out.

They open the Season at Houston and at Milwaukee. The home opener is against the Rockies.

They play Milwaukee 7 times and St. Louis 3 times in September. The regular season ends with a 6 game homestand vs. the Pirates and DBacks.

http://chicago.cubs.mlb.com/schedule/index.jsp?c_i...

AL Central next year..

ROAD TRIP...to Detroit. Wait, maybe I'll skip that one.

That would be great. Sure, Detroit is s***, but Comerica is the balls.

They go to SD twice unless its a misprint for one to be SF.

And weekday series against Sox at Wrigley

shows a 4-game set @ SF in Sept, strange to have 2 road series vs Padres, but Padres schedule shows the same thing.

You know I have never been too keen on the idea of the Cubs building a new ball park but i think that article about how the Cubs really like Miller park probably changed that.

Who knows if having a bigger clubhouse, with more space for weights and spa's is more beneficial to a team? I think it could very well help with strength and conditioning and keeping players on the field. Just an opinion though.

I really like the idea's of tearing down Wrigley and building a replica in the same spot only with all the bells and whistles. The only other thought would be where do the Cubs play for the next 3-4 years when it is being built? Because I don't think they can do it over the Winter, lol. And i think with a newer park the rooftop people would be out of business.

probably work out something where they share Comiskey and Miller Park. It would probably cost them 2 seasons, possibly just one.

Relaxed players probably are better players.

I would imagine they could gut Wrigley and play a year at Comiskey.

Especially if Cuban is the owner.

im one of those people that could care less about wrigley.

it's pretty to look at and that's about it for me.

as long as they keep the organ and/or don't start having "intro/batting" music or blasting rap and 80s rock between innings i'm happy wherever they're playing.

Me too.

But I think to be profitable they need atleast two more rows of skyboxes from pole to pole (on roof and below) to make the money they will need.

Also I would want a replay score board on each side of the roof by the poles encles the stadium around the poles.

Just ask me I have the drawings on a cocktail napkin.

I like poles.

But not Dick Pole.

yeah...to be fair i really enjoy the OF view...the scoreboard, the ivy, the bleachers (very classy/transparent impact upgrade), and the backdrop of the buildings behind it.

ultimately, i could care less if they stay or go, but i guess i should stick with what i know to be good if i truly don't care. i'll ponder that one some other year.

i could talk about the impact of not getting players based on the cruddy clubhouse, bullpen waiting/warming area, training facilities...but really, things like all the day games have more proven impact on that it seems.

Wait, you could care less...so you DO care? That's not what go onto talk about, though. I'm so confused.

i do have the emotional capacity to care less if so desired.

also,

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hehe...

I was harboring a secret expectation (desire?) for that response! I'm p'sychic.

And this is why we love you.

I think he should be the mascot for the 2008 World Champion Cubs. That's right, I said it.

Whatever happened to the plan to build a new building between the current park and Clark - where the players currently park? I thought a couple of years ago they were talking about building something there that would have given some extra clubhouse space and other facilities for the team.

http://chicago.cubs.mlb.com/chc/ballpark/expansion...

I remember Kenney saying they would hold off until they could get more funds and probably until the sale was done. I also thought it was just retail space and more corporate office stuff rather than anything for the players.

They could always play a season at the University of Illinois... oh wait -- that's been done...

so when the cubs make the world series in 2009
and some team takes us to game 7 according
to espn that game is played on november 5th
brrrrrrrrr

Don't worry. Games 6 and 7 will be in sunny Anaheim, CA!

I don't know much about the inside of Wrigley, but isn't there a cheap way to build an awesome state-of-the art clubhouse for the players without tearing the whole thing down?

I realize it's old and there is not a lot of space inside, but you'd think you could knock down some walls inside and expand the clubhouse at the expense of other places, or build some sort of extension on one of the sides or something. I don't know.

Surely they could just put some of those troughs in the clubhouse and fill them with hot water for a jacuzzi when they're not being used for their main purpose.

They've pretty much maxed out the space in Wrigley.

Take the media interview room, for example. On TV, it looks like it might be your standard, maybe even nice, room. It's a dungeon. It's in this little crevice off the walkway to the field/clubhouse where they keep excess grounds crew crap. And the room itself is about the size of a condo's master bedroom.

Actually on TV it still looks like a dungeon. a really nice dungeon.

Recent comments

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The first 600 characters of the last 16 comments, click "View" to see rest of comment.
  • real shame I missed this week's episode of The Crunch Reporter.

    It's highly unusual.

    It does matter a little.

    It matters much less than you think.

     

     

    Rob G. 20 sec ago view
  • four winds field is awesome. it's crazy how minor league parks have "grown up" since the 80s/90s and that park was one of the late-80s models that showed a low-capacity ballpark could look like you're at something other than a highschool baseball game.

    crunch 1 hour 5 min ago view
  • On another topic....I returned to South Bend last night for the 2nd time this season (still haven't tried either the deep-fried mac & cheese sandwich nor "The Porknado", as the drive home is over an hour and that could get ugly), and was pleasantly surprised to find D. Underwood pitching in a rehab start. He looked good -- although, to be fair, these are low-A hitters -- fastball consistently at 94-95 (if the SB scoreboard is to be believed -- several pitches were clocked in the 30s...) and with good location.

    billybucks 2 hours 14 min ago view
  • he gains nothing, no advantage, no saving of resources, nothing...there is not a cost/benefit tradeoff...him letting the running game go on around him for others to control isn't gaining him an advantage elsewhere. it's putting him at a disadvantage even if it's not cashed in with a run.

    crunch 4 hours 54 min ago view
  • And out of respect for the rest of TCR, I'm done on this. I'm sure I'm not the only one in the other camp, but time to let it go. (Until the next Lester start. I kid.)

    #baseballtalk

    Tito 4 hours 57 min ago view
  • He is putting himself at a disadvanage. But how much of one relative to the rest of his game? He's not Justin Germano -- he's inarguably one of the best SPs in baseball, issue or not. It would be more of thing to discuss ad nauseum if it constantly caused him to give up runs and lose games. But it doesn't.

    #baseballtalk

    Tito 5 hours 7 min ago view
  • shouting down my points about lester with "well, it didn't hurt" is like saying it doesn't matter if a guy starts out walking 3 guys every inning as long it's followed by a K and a double play.

    it's like elevating ERA and wins to a high level while ignoring what it took to get there.

    crunch 5 hours 13 min ago view
  • I'm asking how much it has hurt Lester and the Cubs this year. Do you have that answer?

    I legitimately don't recall you answering that quesion, apart from the condescending silliness you just posted. So if you did answer specifically about the impact of Lester's issue, I'd like to re-read it. Thanks.

    #baseballtalk

    Tito 5 hours 26 min ago view
  • if runner = on base and pitcher = j.lester then lead = large

    if lead = large then probability of extra base on following hit > average of mean

    okay, enough of that silliness...

    ...you can read more on the thread i copy/pasted this from the last time you decided you needed to talk to me about me.

    crunch 5 hours 32 min ago view
  • Thank you for your answer.

    #baseballtalk

    Tito 5 hours 36 min ago view
  • bless your heart.

    crunch 5 hours 37 min ago view
  • I don't recall you answering my question about quantifying how it has hurt Lester and the Cubs this season, apart from one guy scoring on a sac fly. Can you direct me to your answer? Thanks.

    #baseballtalk

    Tito 5 hours 42 min ago view
  • Lester's personal catcher has an .809 OPS.

    #baseballtalk

    Tito 5 hours 45 min ago view
  • we already has this asinine discussion. you didn't like the answer. there's already an answer above you can apply about how a guy goes from 1st base to home on a sac fly that included him stealing 3rd while lester watched from the mound. the fact that the cubs bats, 100% independent of that situation, scored some runs invalidates it as an issue to you. i find that stupid. we will not get anywhere with this. you know we will not get anywhere with this...because we already had this asinine discussion.

    #circularlogic

    crunch 5 hours 46 min ago view
  • it's not about SB...it never was.

    jake arrieta being slow to the plate isn't comparable to jon lester not throwing to any base. how the runners read off arrieta isn't anything similar to what a runner is reading off lester.

    maybe arrieta could use a personal catcher solely to control his running game...but i doubt it's that important.

    crunch 5 hours 50 min ago view
  • Can you quantify how this has hurt Lester/the Cubs this season?

    #baseballtalk

    Tito 5 hours 50 min ago view