LaHair's grand slam made it by a hair.

When the Chicago Cubs were up 9 (nine!) to nothin' over the St. Louis Cardinals, the best word I could come up with was "exotic".

Because that's how it felt.
Two days in a row of massive Cub bat-damage?
That's like being on some island in National Geographic where the lizards all have fur and bring you rum drinks.

Luckily the game was delayed by rain so's I could hear some on the radio while driving home, and LaHair's Grand Salami happened about a minute after I turned it on.
Neither Pat Hughes or Keith Moreland thought it was going out, and both sounded surprised that it did which actually made for a kinda cool radio moment. And I thought man if I was on the radio right now I'd say, "That grand slam by LaHair made it by a hair!" and the audience could collectively groan yet maybe remember that moment a little clearer.
Which, HEY! I kinda did here, right?

And I'm making a new window/flower box for the front of the house, so I continued with the radio while sanding and got all nervous with the rest of you when Samardzija gave up that batch of runs and even though the bullpen's been kinda scary I was thinkin', "HEY SVEUM PUT SOMEBODY IN."

But Samardzija goes 5, then Dolis-Russel-Wood-Marmol all worked perfectly.
I even saw the Marmol part, and he looked great (struck out 2!).

I didn't mention that Ian Stewart banged a 3-runner out too.

Cubs 9 Cards 5.

The whole deal was the opposite of what you expected, which happens ALL THE TIME in the Greatest Rivalry in Sports.

Today at noon Central it's Chris Volstad vs. that guy who took Chris Carpenter's place, Lance Lynn.
Lance won his first game, and I'd appreciate it if they didn't have their own version of Lynn-sanity in St. Louis.
Also, I read some thing about the entire Midwest being under some kind of Horrible Weather warning, with conditions that probably will create angst and havoc and hopefully not tornadoes (or a rain delay in St. Louis).

Go Cubs!


Someone else said it in previous post, but I would rather watch this team develop then some of the overpayed crap we have trotted out lately.

Move Byrd, Dejesus in CF, Sori in Right, LaHair in lf and bring up rizzo.

As much as I've always opposed Soriano since his signing, he seems to have changed something. That diving catch he made, though it looked bad, was really a pretty good play with the way the ball was twisting in the air. Since he is the poster child of our over-payed crap, if he can do something good on this team it would be a huge bonus to us.

He looks much much more confident. He also looks like he's taking a little pride in defense--like he thinks catching the ball matters. Bob talked about him working on being "aggressive" on defense.

He has the look of a man determined to be traded to a real baseball team.

He's actually been tracking the ball pretty well when I've had to chance to watch him. Even his approach at the plate seems different. If he is determined to answer his critics, good for him. I'd love to see him make a point. Hell, I've even seen him make contact on stuff he didn't use to make contact on. And lay off some stuff he was swinging at.

But a week doesn't a season make. I'm skeptical, but strangely hopeful.

Rain Delay about to end, Pat Hughes giving the lineups on WGN radio (2 pm cst)

Recent comments

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  • I support this. Hendricks has not only looked better lately but seems to start struggling after a few innings which is better than the 1st in the playoffs.

  • Just tweeted via Jesse Rogers: Hendricks starting Game 2. Wow. Just wow.

  • That was good!

  • Well said. On one hand, I thought the HBP was a bad baseball play -- down 4 runs, put a runner on for a red-hot Fowler. On the other hand, they needed to do something -- I hadn't thought about the warning/pitching inside point. Is Hurdle that smart? He does not strike me that way. By the way -- not clear which fan base you are referring to in your "first" 3rd point.

  • My unsolicited opinions on topics covered in this thread:
    1. I hate the fact that after 162 games, a team could be out after 1 game. However, I think the system is pretty close to perfect right now. 2 of 3 isn't feasible unless they shorten the regular season, and it ices the division winners for way too long. This creates excitement, and rewards the division winners.

  • Personally, I think the game could have had a very different look had the Pirates held onto the ball and tagged Fowler out on the steal in the first. Cole was clearly frazzled, but if they took that runner off the base, it could have relaxed him a lot.

  • Football games are played once a week. There are 16 games a year. I'm not even remotely following at all how you can compare the two leagues and playoff systems. It is physically impossible to play a home and away series. The idea of not having any road games in baseball playoffs is certainly a head scratcher.

    How is not having the first and last game at home a benefit for the division winners and team with the best record? How is it not an incentive to win the division when a WC team has to blow their top pitcher?

    Call me lost.

  • Two 97+ win teams in a do-or-die, great bullpens, overpowering starters, plenty of pop--hard to believe that game wouldn't be tense. A 4-0 lead is not a blowout, especially in that situation and with the Cubs' young bullpen. Not only would a defensive play here or there make a difference, but you get the win there also on the home plate umps strike zone (generous strike calls for Arrieta, including a couple Ks), and on Schwarber sitting on the right pitch at the right time.

  • Unbeleivable Dodgers:
    I just noticed the Dodger's payroll today. It is just absurd. $300,000,000+!!
    Here is where just some of their money is for 2015:

    Some "Highlights"
    Carl Crawford $20MM
    Brandon McCarthy $17MM
    Bronson Arroyo $3.5MM
    Darwin B $2.2MM
    Dan Haren $10MM
    Matt Kemp $18MM
    Brian Wilson $10MM
    Ryan Webb $2.2MM
    Dee Gordon $2.5MM

  • So I think tomorrow will be the most important test of how far we can go. We can win it all with two pitchers since Arietta has shown he can carry over his success to the post season. If Lester can be dominant also then I think we can go far no matter how Hendricks or Hammel do.


    And in terms of pitching just went through to see how we could maximize Lester and Arietta and came up with this (Lester would be going on 4 days rest three times and Arietta twice):

  • i still can't believe that crawford contract (7/142). all that loot and years for a LF'r who's entire hitting game revolves around his legs and line-drive power. those triples that raised his value are deceptive as hell to his true power, but it helped him get paid.

    there's also pause about a guy who's ob% is almost totally driven by hits rather than walks. BOS got lucky unloading that crap deal.

  • I think the Cubs take Berry and Soler off playoff roster and add Hammel & Ramirez. Believe Maddon will find Denorfia & Jackson defense too hard to lose.

  • O & B: I like the one-game Wild Card heart attack game, but I'd actually like to see a best two-out-of-three LDS played in the home parks of the two division winners with the best records, and then the LCS as a best two-out-of-three in the home park of the division winner left standing with the best record, and then let's get to the World Series already. 

  • I...don't know. If chanting would help the Cubs beat the Cardinals in the next series or ultimately the World Series I think I'd be ok with it lol. I'm not supportive of saying insulting things to opposing fans or throwing things but loud noise and chanting seems appropriate to me.

    I also grew up in France though and that kind of thing is par for the course at soccer and rugby matches and I love it. I find crowds too passive here.

  • Er, they won the first one. My bad. Carry on.