Virtual Waiting Room Virtually Gone

 

So, single game tickets went on sale yesterday (yawn), a couple of weeks later than what had been the norm for many years. I used to go at it on Day One via phone and computer both, from the opening bell until whenever I finally broke down the door to the virtual waiting room. Usually that was mid-afternoon and by then the pickings were slim for whatever prime games hadn’t already sold out.

Yesterday it was mid-afternoon before I even recalled that the ticket windows were open. Then I tapped into the Cub website for the sake of both old times and curiosity.

Opening Day was still wide open. So was the White Sox series. The Saturday Boston game in June was down to nothing but $140 (!) bleacher seats (that’s not including handling/processing fees) but the Friday and Sunday games were very available. Weekend series with the Cardinals in July and September still featured full menus of sections and price tiers. I checked again before I hit the sack last night and all of the above was still true. I couldn't find a sold out game. Feeling almost sorry for the organization I plunged in and bought four in the bleachers for a game vs. the Giants on Labor Day weekend when my alma mater Iowa Hawkeyes will also be in town for their season opener at Soldier Field. I got 'em for the comparatively low price of $27 (silver tier) plus about another nine bucks per in add-on fees.

The brand appears a bit tarnished after prolonged storage in fifth place.

But the thick manual the new management regime has been rushing to assemble apparently isn't limited to on-field ways and means of doing business.

One of my spring rites is to get pocket schedules from the Cub marketing commandoes. I'm unable to find them here in Des Moines, even so closely removed from headquarters as the team's Triple A outpost. They always oblige, but never so promptly or cordially as this year. The same day I e-mailed my request I got a reply from Barb, a "Wrigley Field Ambassador" assuring me the schedules were already in the mail. Sure enough, they arrived a couple of days later, tucked inside a handwritten note from Barb. She also tossed in a Cub decal and expressed her hope that I'd be able to pay (and I do mean pay) a visit to The Vaunted Confines sometime in 2012. 

There's one born every minute. The trick this year will be luring three million of us enabling suckers through the turnstiles again. But if they can get someone who's used to driving across town to watch guys like LaHair and Barney play for free to spend lots of time and money for the privilege of watching them do less in Chicago than they did here in Des Moines, who knows? Maybe they can turn that trick. 

15 minutes until first peek at the 2012 Cubs on WGN. I can hardly wait to see what I bought into.

Comments

Well at least you WON'T see a wrestling match between Z and gatorade, you will not see Aram grounding into a rally killing double play, and you probably won't see snow on labor day.

Other than that, things are looking up!

"you will not see Aram grounding into a rally killing double play"

you're not going to like ian stewart.

oh wait, people have to be on base for that to happen...nevermind.

-edit- two line drive singles to RF rather than two ground balls to the 2nd baseman today so far...keep it up...or keep it further up and put it over a wall.

GOOD timing, CRUNCH!

it's more about how much stuff he's going to put toward 2nd/RF as far as the DP thing goes. we're going to see a lot of it.

You also wont see ARam hit game winning home runs. You also won't see .300/30/100 from the Cubs 3b dude.

Empty stats. Aram is about Aram. Only when shit doesn't matter. good riddance.

3rd all time team slugging, .356 ob% over 8.5 years.

cubs could use more empty stats players...and his arm.

If the Cubs had 7 other starters as shitty as ARam, imagine how terrible they would be!!!! Aram totally sucked it up in the 2003 playoffs. .887 OPS(5th best in team history)with the Cubs in 1100+ games. What a loser.

If ARam sucks, Santo sucks.

he may not range as well as others left-to-right, but you couldn't drop a bunt or weak hit on the grass in front of him. he could throw off-balance and on the run with the best of them.

While I wasn't unhappy he's gone with our current plans, I'll just never get the hate for ARam completely unwarranted by his stats. It's almost visceral. Then again, Crunch has that for Ian Stewart so eh (though for sure ARam is a better player).

ian stewart kicked muh dog and it up n' died.

also, i could care less about his stats. i care about what he does putting a bat through the zone.

at least im not getting the "dubois treatment" backlash. people can feel free to call me a dumbass/wrong-as-hell or whatever about my view on stewart, but i'm not feeling the hate level from the dubois era view on dubois's swing.

Really? I'm the exact opposite. I don't care how he swings the bat long as he gets the stats.

that's the thing...i don't think he'll get the stats of old based on how he swings a bat.

i'm projecting based on what i see him doing recently with a bat, not what he's done in the past.

anyone who pitches him low or misses middle is playing with fire. you can lure him into ground outs and line drives (most line drives by anyone goes for a hit) pitching him up because of his swing mechanics.

i honestly think he'd be better off...with his swing...letting it loose hard at the expense of a few more Ks in order to elevate the ball more. it's just a shame he's not a guy who could temper those extra Ks with walks (like j.burnitz).

The trade for Aramis was a good one, especially initially. I do not think anyone would argue about that. We loved his RBIs and some years even his avg. HOWEVER, in more recent years his numbers have been down, AND there is little question that he did not bring it to the park every game. the former we can overlook to some degree, the later we can not from a veteran. Based on this, do you sign him to multi-year contract given that you want to change the culture of the organization? I say, no. I'd rather have the Cubans in the system.

I certainly will never begrudge his best years, but he completely was a no-show in 2010 for the first three months.

It was a great trade getting him and Kenny Lofton was very valuable for the Cubs as well. But it was time for him to move on for the amount of money and years the guy wanted.

I wish him well except against the Cubs.

The team needed his bat to remain in the thick of things and He failed again and agan.

"again and again" sure seems like exaggeration to me. He had some slow starts and a few injury-shortened seasons. And he still managed to be the Cubs' most productive third baseman since Santo.

I think the real question in all this is, did we want to give Aram three more years or so at third. He wanted a longer term contract, and he deserved his free agency. Part of backing up the truck means doing things like letting a guy like Aram go. He's getting slower and he is always an injury waiting to happen. But I'll still miss seeing him at the plate, and I'll cringe when he comes up against the Cubs. It was nice to have somebody FINALLY fill that Santo gap for several years. But it was time to say goodbye, as well. On a team that is trying to free itself of insidious long term contracts, hooking up another one wasn't a good idea for a team that has performed the way it has lately.

If we knew it would've taken only 3yrs/$36 million, maybe I we'd have been more pro-signing Ramirez. That last year might be a tough pill to swallow...but I'd bet he's solid the first two.

I didn't realize we were talking about resigning Aram. I was only pointing out that Aramis did not fail again and again. I was perfectly happy to see him go given the direction of the organization.

The Cubs weren't any good in 2010 whether he hit or not. Now, his no-show didn't help, of course. He was arguably the team's best hitter during his tenure. I've never gotten the hatred...it's all related to him "not hustling" or whatever. Bottom line, the guy produced.

Phil Rogers again saying Cubs win in Soler derby

http://www.chicagotribune.com/sports/baseball...

kiss of death...'this guy has made 88 straight (PAT's, free throws, whatever)...'

well it ain't over 'til it's over... = )

What's really annoying about the article is how different the headline is from the article. The headline makes it sound like the Cubs have pretty much nailed it, and the article is much fuzzier.

that's because the headline is designed to make you read the article and the article is designed to make you wish you had not read the headline.

Ha.

btw, also bought a groupon yesterday: 10 I-cub tix for $25...

niiiiiiiiiiice.

Already tired of len/bob...took but an inning

That is strange. They are one of the better pairs in baseball. Len is extremely good.

I'd prefer dizzy & pee wee...

this team will win at least six dozen...

chris carpenter update (the evil one...well, not really, but he plays for STL on a voluntary basis)

"Chris Carpenter was diagnosed Saturday with a bulging cervical disc in his neck.
The Cardinals haven't decided when the veteran right-hander is going to be able to resume throwing, but Joe Strauss of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch says a bulging disc is "not nearly as bad as nerve damage," which the Cards originally thought Carpenter had."

bored...checking stats on one-time "maybe" cubs signing ricky jacquez (210Ks in 120ip in his last 2 years of highschool...all 5'9" of him).

he's got years to turn it around, but right now he's a little wild...bit hittable...still getting the Ks.

they're using him as a college 3-4 pitcher (sometimes pen, sometimes starting)...not at all uncommon for a college freshman.

4g 1gs - 11ip 13h 8bb 13k 6.55era

MLB confirms 5 year deal LHP Conception with Cubs...

http://chicago.cubs.mlb.com/news/article.jsp?...

Sullvan's article says $6M guaranteed, $3M signing bonus, $3M spread out over 5 years
http://www.chicagotribune.com/sports/baseball...

“He’s a 20-year-old left-hander, a really good feel for pitching, a three pitch mix,” Hoyer said. “He’s had success at a young age in Cuba and a guy we’re excited to bring over here and work with.”

mentions something about starting out in AAA, but that seems like a bit of a reach.

should've traded him...

(2) Dejesus vs. (3) W. Castillo
(2) Coleman vs. (3) Maholm

well i'm just glad that the finalists in the bunt tourney are potentially our 1-2 hitters in the lineup

David Dejesus and Vince Coleman?

Lilly vs Garza and Garza lasted only 1.1 innings.

Single, HBP, Single, K, BB(RBI), BB (RBI), Single (2 RBI)... Replaced be Chris Rusin

4-0 Lillies, thru 3.

(in Buffalo Bill's voice)

is a great, big fat person.

'Sully' could use a new do...

Dwight Shrute disagrees.

Putting himself back into contention for bullpen spot with some poisonous stuff...2 IP, 0 H, 0 BB, 5 K

"Jamie Moyer allowed one run and three hits in three innings of work Sunday in a victory over the White Sox."

hell yeah.

Nick the ....
Still can't get the Theo Compensation venom out of his bloodstream.
Fortunately, these are the only Cub references in his Sunday Baseball Notes.

http://www.boston.com/sports/baseball/redsox/...

1. The PA announcer at Roger Dean Stadium in Jupiter made this introduction Thursday: “Now pitching for the Red Sox, ‘the other’ Chris Carpenter.’’ The “other’’ Carpenter proved he was no relation when he walked three batters in the inning, including one with the bases loaded.

2. Speaking of Carpenter, Thursday’s appearance against the Cardinals was a flashback to the command issues he has had. The Red Sox are impressed with his live fastball (96 m.p.h.), but privately they are not pleased with what they wound up having to settle for as compensation for Theo Epstein.

Maybe Nick Cafardo is Larry Lucchino's pen name.

Recent comments

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  • Wow. The site actually loaded without an error! Happy 4th all, and Go Cubs!

    The E-Man 8 min 19 sec ago view
  • OK -- my 4th of July resolution is to try to stay more positive. So -- 10 games to the AS break, meaning the Cubs will be in first place at the break! First time since...2008? Also, hopefully, Willson, KB and Javy learned something about Familia yesterday that they can use in the future.

    billybucks 43 min 38 sec ago view
  • Hmmm, my math might be fuzzy but if he retired 3 batters with 3 pitches, how did he get a 1/1 GO/AO ratio?

    bradsbeard 2 hours 8 min ago view
  • Pls DFA Peralta when Richard comes back. Richard 1 IP, O R, O ER, 0 BB, 2 Ks in first rehab appearance. We really need to trade for a LHRP.

    chitownmvp01 2 hours 25 min ago view
  • "The Boston Red Sox were banned from signing any international players for the next year and had five of their teenage prospects declared free agents on Friday after a Major League Baseball investigation showed they circumvented signing-bonus rules last year, a source familiar with the situation told Yahoo Sports."

    https://www.yahoo.com/sports/news/source-red-sox-b...

    Rob Richardson 6 hours 4 min ago view
  • The thing with Heyward is its not just free agency. He is way under performing his career #s. He's making the same % of contact but his soft contact is much higher and hard contact much lower than all his previous years so there is something very specifically going on this year causing the issues. Chances are he will eventually get back to his previous #s and it's better to get the slump now and get that hot run later but I wish I knew what is different about this year. He's either just not seeing the ball as well or a swing change is causing it.

    johann 6 hours 20 min ago view
  • Only 3 pitches for Leathersich. Not much of a rehab outing.

    Thanks for the reporting Phil.

    QuietMan 6 hours 32 min ago view
  • He's the nastiest pitcher I've seen in awhile. I'm gonna give them all a mulligan on this one.

    Coghlan's strike out was more disappointing. He was fighting off a lot of pitches and not swinging at crap, and on the last pitch, he swung at stuff he was laying off, and struck out.

    And Heyward, too. I don't blame Heyward - I blame free agency. I hate it. You almost never get a valid return on the investment.

    I look forward to the day when ball players own the teams. The current economics are not sustainable.

    Old and Blue 7 hours 33 min ago view
  • Oh, I'm sure you're right. He's not 27-27 in saves for nothing. But, man, I hope they learned last night that he didn't throw a single pitch in the zone to KB, Contreras or Baez, and they all just kept swinging.

    billybucks 9 hours 41 min ago view
  • Sounds like a much better game than last night's fiasco in Flushing.

    Old and Blue 9 hours 57 min ago view
  • I'm pretty sure it looks like a sweet pitch on the way in. How many sinkers like that are there at 98 mph? I agree that they should just do a Lackey and stand their with their bat on their shoulders until he throws a strike next time, but I can see how that's hard to do.

    The bullpen, on the other hand, is a mess, and Heyward is starting to piss me off.

    Old and Blue 9 hours 59 min ago view
  • I noticed that too. He's getting to everything, but when he gets right under it on a high flyball he looks uncomfortable

    cubbies.4ever 18 hours 32 min ago view
  • Did you expect anything different?

    billybucks 19 hours 3 min ago view
  • Wow, did they blow this game. Stupid plays by the kids in the 7th -- Almora throwing to 3rd instead of 2nd to keep the DP in order (when a DP probably wins the game) and Baez throwing to 3rd (to a backpedalling KB) instead of getting the easy 2nd out at first - cost them the game. Also, Contreras almost throws the ball into RF on a nonexistent pick-off play. And Maddon, for using Peralta in the first place. Did they do a bunch of shots in the dugout before the 7th? Unbelievably bad baseball. I thought Almora had a high baseball IQ?

    billybucks 19 hours 25 min ago view
  • men on 2nd/3rd, 0 out...and nothing.

    cubs lose :(

    crunch 19 hours 57 min ago view
  • UH OH! RALLY TIME!

    crunch 20 hours 7 min ago view