Baseball is back (for optimists).

I believe we're all optimists at heart or the being a Cubs Fan thing falls apart.
But there's a tug of war illustrated here that's happening, too.
Yes, we're all thrilled that baseball is back. 
I may weep when I hear Pat Hughes' voice on the transistor out by the grill. 
But also, I can't help thinking that Lucy's holding that football and telling me to kick.

Here's hoping it all actually happens. 

Comments

angels are missing 10-ish players from today's workout and mike trout isn't sure he'll participate this year (pregnant wife, newborn on the way).  welcome to the angels, maddon.

I acquired Trout over the winter in a keeper league. Not feeling too great about that either.

Don't let short-term market fluctuations diminsh your enthusiasm for a great long-term investment.

MLB has confirmed 38 positives (players/coaches/personel/etc) so far.

the cleveland indians have released a statement that they are open for dialogue about the future of the team's name.

twitter is all over it and seems to be all about going back to "cleveland spiders", an unrelated dead MLB team lineage in cleveland from the 1800s (some guy named cy young played for them).

"I've been thinking about it and been thinking about it before we put out that statement," (Terry) Francona said. "I know in the past, when I've been asked about, whether it's our name or the Chief Wahoo, I think I would usually answer and say I know that we're never trying to be disrespectful. And I still feel that way, but I don't think that's a good enough answer today. I think it's time to move forward. It's a very difficult subject. It's also delicate," he said.

d.price (LAD) to sit out the season.

LAD isn't going to get d.price at all in 2020 and they got m.betts for 60-ish games until he's a FA.  ow.  that duo cost them jeter downs, alex verdugo, and connor wong.

2020 schedule to be announced monday (tentative).

Wittenmeyer tweet: Hendricks and Darvish combine for 4 Ks in a pair of scoreless half-innings.

Press box wag: "Cubs hitting sucks this year"

phillies now have 7 down with covid...freddy freeman (ATL) has symptomatic covid with fever/chills/aches for the past 3 days...some players on multiple teams are still awaiting initial test results so they can join spring training 2.0 with their teams...

also, this photo of pablo sandoval (SF) taking grounders at 3rd... https://pbs.twimg.com/media/EcHFTylVcAAE5SI?format...

COVID positive: LeMahieu NYY; Sano MIN; S Perez KC.

freddy freeman + aaron nola are also positive star players.

the scary thing is freeman tested negative on tuesday.  by thursday he was sick and tested positive shortly afterwards.  some may question the strength of the MLB test if they were the ones who gave freeman's initial negative...

Two White Sox test positive for Covid. Not yet disclosed who they are. Reminder that the Cubs are going to be scheduled to play the WSox for 6 games.

"Yu Darvish threw his new pitch, a two-seam/splitter hybrid, during his first intrasquad game appearance on Saturday.

Darvish, who already had 10 different pitch variations in his arsenal, is calling this new pitch "The Supreme.""

Worrisome. Astros and Nats cancel workouts because of Covid testing delays.

Trumpy: "Anyone who wants a test, can get a test." 3-6-20. Four months ago.

https://khn.org/news/donald-trumps-wrong-claim-tha...

I'm beginning to think maybe this guy doesn't have a good grasp on being President. 

Dodger's Stadium is a testing site. Except, you can't just get a test. You have to be symptomatic. Cough, cough...this is really not going well.

Dodger stadium Covid testing site was closed without notice today. Long lines, pissed off people. ClusterF*cked Americans as the virus spreads. Here is the WSCR link that says KB is pissed about the lax testing by MLB.

https://670thescore.radio.com/cubs-kris-bryant-cri...

"We have had guys that showed up here on Sunday (June 28) and hadn't gotten tested again until seven days later," Bryant said. "And then you don't get the results for two days either. So that's nine days without knowing. If we are want this to succeed, we are going to have to figure it out."

Apparently being run by the same guy who put Quintana in charge of washing dishes.

Joey Gallo tests Positive. 

My take on MLB issues getting tests is that it's a slice of the dysfunctional American dilemma by having corrupt, science-denying, lying, racist Federal government officials and it's worse now in Republican states due to the Governors lax approaches, in an effort to suck up to you know who. I listened to NY Governor Andrew Cuomo in his conference today and his leadership converted a full-blown local pandemic to a  flat curve and what seems to be a successful and appropriate cautious opening. It took 3 months and some cooperation from, of all people, New Yorkers. Too bad the United States is no longer united and the Red portion of the country is definitely not cooperative and if anything more crazed then ever.  Jackie Robinson, our own Ernie Banks and Branch Rickey must be horrified if they are able to watch from Baseball Heaven.

With players dropping like flies and others opting-out, methinks the MLB season could resemble the last three innings of a Cactus League Spring Training game.

Well, back in February (I think; that was about 17 years ago now), our diaper staining commander in his own mind declared we had 15 cases in the U.S. and that would quickly go to zero. 130k dead and rapidly rising now 4 months later I still have brain dead neighbors in SoCal saying if Biden gets elected we're screwed. I wonder what they think screwed looks like. 

maybe he's hoping it'll be bad enough to flip the population odometer over to 0 after humanity is wiped from the planet.  let's give him more time to see if he's right before we get too down on him.

Hmm. Never thought about it that way. Maybe it is a very stable genius? 

Cubs first Wrigley game is vs Brewers per Sun-Times. Full Schedules to come out in an hour.

"Angels summer camp workouts are optional on Monday due to COVID-19 testing delays.

The testers simply failed to show up to Angels camp on Sunday, and there were also apparently some shipping issues with samples during the July 4 holiday weekend. The Astros, Nationals, and Cardinals have outright canceled their Monday workouts because of delays within MLB's testing protocol."

neat.  this is going just great.

but hey, i'm sure a month from now we'll be done with all this crazy virus stuff going on...as players consider multi-game road trips through FL/TX/AZ/CA.

4-29-20: White House senior adviser Jared Kushner told "FOX & Friends" Wednesday morning that he expects to see life go "back to normal" in the U.S. by June and "the hope is that by July the country’s really rocking again."

https://www.realclearpolitics.com/video/2020/04/29...

Well, that prediction has held up especially well in FL, TX, AZ and CA

MLBPA sent a memo to player agents Monday saying that it and the league are “actively pursuing an additional medical lab site to increase the speed and efficiency of test processing and reporting,” Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic tweets.

Try Toronto? or Mexico City (if you can climb the wall)

Is Cubs 3rd draft pick Jordan Nwogu not going to sign?  Most teams are done signing.  Since the Cubs have the other 4 signed there's not a question of negotiations.  I thought Little (using his viral video of 105 mph as leverage) or Moreno being a promising HS SP would be the tough ones.

deleted that link.  it was a republished-to-feed article, not a new one, so it's not very useful.

cubs taking full advantage of that "night games deal" with the wrigleyville neighborhood...almost all the home games will be night games.

8 home day games, 6 on the weekend.

anthony rizzo is in mid-season form.

he sat out today with lower back tightness.

Unfortunately, Kimbrel in Cub mid season form as well, giving up a two out, two run oppo homer to Willson. 

Kimbrel Cub stats which I tried to bury but were dug up again: gave up a career high 9 home runs in only 20 2/3 inning, averaged a career high 9.1 hits allowed per 9 innings and served up a 6.53 ERA for his troubles. And no full spring training build up period again.  Still hopeful he's got something left in the tank this year and next but man, he's got my full attention going into the season

i still can't believe this front office paid anyone 16m a year to throw 60-70ip...

Yep

Watching the last night's highlight clip was not encouraging either as discussed here:  https://www.bleachernation.com/cubs/2020/07/08/craig-kimbrels-intrasquad-performance-is-a-reminder-of-the-concerns-that-already-existed/

You could say that Ross is also personally invested in Kimbrel given that he scouted him at Theo's request and basically gave Theo the green light to sign him.  But as the original post concerns optimism for the season ... I'll give it a rest (until his next poor outing!)

Also: good to see Willy do what you're supposed to do on meatball fastballs this early in camp

"Shohei Ohtani threw just 15 of his 50 pitches for strikes in an intrasquad game Tuesday.  Trent Rush had him at eight walks, a hit by pitch and six wild pitches before he was shut down for a day. "

ow.

On the bright side regarding Kimbrel. It doesn't have the lasting bad side as the Mets arrangement with Bobby Bonilla. Unless they want to re-negotiate Kimbrel's terms.

BobbyBo: he'll get paid $1,193,248.20 a year every year until 2035, when Bonilla is 72 entire years old. ... Questionable sports contracts – The New York Mets are payingretired outfielder Bobby Bonilla $1.2 million a year until he is 72, as part of a deferred payment deal negotiated after he retired.

There is that re Kimbrel - at worst, just another year on the books.

 July 1st is Bobby Bonilla Day - the day that check is cut and paid annually. 

per Tribune: Kimbrel's OK, just working on his changeup (formerly his fastball).

I think what your saying applies to all franchises in all big-time team sports.  The virus is asymptomatic in many carriers.  The national positive test % rate is mid/high single digits.  If your pro sports franchise does 3-4 x better than that, it still means some players and coaches will test positive and things will grind to a partial or complete halt.  At least baseball didn't try to "bubble" in AZ and FL, which are looking like two of the worst (and worst-led) states in which to be located at the currrent stage of the pandemic.

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  • Cubster 18 min 42 sec ago (view)

    and they are including amusement tax, healthcare costs (Doc Adams doesn't come cheap!), social security and political donations to the City and the Governor of Nebraska. 

     

  • bradsbeard 43 min 52 sec ago (view)

    It all depends what you count as "payroll." If you include the $11M in Lester and Descalso's buyouts plus the $3M sent in the Darvish trade you get to somewhere like $145M. If you include the $15M in estimated share of player benefits, you get to $160M. I think that last year, including player benefits, they were slated to be up around $205M for MLB payroll before the pandemic. 

     

  • crunch 10 hours 27 min ago (view)

    not sure, but i think it's around 130-135m right now even with bryant/baez/contreras still on board...including the 3m to set darvish free and other random $$ expenses on the roster.

    tack on another 3-4m for happ when that gets settled....plus other odds/ends that have a chance to make the roster (s.miller, a.morgan, j.holder, etc) and other pre-arbitration guys...

    cubs still need someone to back up contreras (if he sticks around, which i wouldn't be surprised to see him stick around)...not sure if taylor gushue is gonna be that guy and m.amaya is too young.

     

  • George Altman 11 hours 16 min ago (view)

    Seriously, what's the 2021 payroll number? Currently at approximately $165M and after they trade Bryant, Baez, & Contreras  - $130M. Is that it, $135-140M.

     

  • crunch 11 hours 21 min ago (view)

    Q to the angels...supposedly 1/8m

     

  • crunch 20 hours 16 min ago (view)

    pete ricketts (the governor of Nebraska ricketts) is a key part of an anti-gambling Nebraska group called "Gambling With The Good Life" that actively lobbied their open legislature...including a speech by pete...to keep gambling illegal in Nebraska.

    he last spoke for the group to the state government in-session 3 months ago.

    ...it's also worth mentioning all of this is separate from the Draft Kings/Wrigley Field deal that flew under the radar toward the end of the season that will put a sportsbook directly in wrigley field, itself.

     

  • Charlie 20 hours 51 min ago (view)

    Of all the things, why does this most make me want to punch

     

  • Cubster 1 day 2 hours ago (view)

    I thought the Cubs had lost a rising star in Porter, seems the just got lucky with him leaving the organization. 

     

  • crunch 1 day 9 hours ago (view)

    jared porter...damn dude...mets gm, ex cubs director of scouting...

     

  • crunch 1 day 13 hours ago (view)

    cubs freeing up that chatwood + lester loot sure did help...wait...sigh.

     

  • Cubster 1 day 13 hours ago (view)

    Plus Chatwood signing w Bluejays is done.

     

  • crunch 1 day 15 hours ago (view)

    ...and done.  1 year deal with a mutual option.

     

  • Cubster 1 day 16 hours ago (view)

    Dolorous in discussions with the Washington Schwarbs.

     

  • crunch 1 day 16 hours ago (view)

    that's where i'd put my money.  he gave up an alarming amount of HR last season, giving pause.  still, he's shown he's better than a 5 slot guy...

     

  • Cubster 1 day 16 hours ago (view)

    God knows, the pitching staff needs more Garlick but the offense needs to ward off those strikeout demons.

     

  • Dolorous Jon Lester 1 day 16 hours ago (view)

     Has to be Paddack