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Browsing posts from June, 2009

Pittsburgh Is Cubs’ Medicine

By bullpenbrian - June 30, 2009 - 12:57 am Leave a comment.


Pittsburgh is the perfect opportunity for Chicago to get healthy in the standings.

Thankfully for the Cubs, the Central Division is the tightest in baseball. Only five games separate first from worst, and the Cubs are just 3.5 games back despite a sub .500 record.

To put that in perspective, all other division in baseball are separated by at least 10.5 games top to bottom.


Piniella Calling Out Cubs

By bullpenbrian - June 29, 2009 - 12:01 am Leave a comment.

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Lou is finally taking a hard stand.

The skipper was quick to point out the in the post game press conference that his team is playing poorly, period.

Despite the Cubs sub .500 record this season, we haven’t heard Lou get this critical publicly about his players all year.

I think the tough love is long overdue, but at least Lou is saying something other than “what can I do?”

Obviously, Chicago needs a fire lit under their rear ends, and it’s Lou’s responsibility to light the torch.


The Mark DeRosa Trade

By bullpenbrian - June 28, 2009 - 12:01 pm Leave a comment.
Mark DeRosa chases after Jim Hendry

Mark DeRosa chases after Jim Hendry

I feel for Mark DeRosa.

All the guy wants is to play for the Cubs. Instead, he’s suiting up with the rival Cardinals.

No doubt it’s a move up from playing with god-awful Cleveland, but I would rather see DeRosa in a White Sox uni before seeing him wear the birds on the bat.

It’s fitting DeRosa now has the chance to punish his former GM, Jim Hendry, for the remainder of the season, and maybe even longer if the Cardinals decide to resign Mark to a multi-year deal.

What’s worse, however, is watching Milton Bradley, DeRosa’s offseason replacement; slowly divide the Cubs’ clubhouse.

Who knew ditching DeRo would ever hurt the Cubs this much?


Lou vs. Milton Bradley

By bullpenbrian - June 28, 2009 - 1:00 am Leave a comment.

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Many moons ago I made a prediction.

I said Milton Bradley would keep the Cubs from winning a World Championship this season.

Through the first three months Bradley has held up his end of the deal.

His lack of hitting has gone hand-in-hand with his lack of professionalism. His blame-game is in full swing, and worse, he’s quickly dividing the Cubs’ clubhouse.

When teammates rip one another publicly, it’s a sure fire sign the team’s chemistry is off the mark (yes, I believe in clubhouse chemistry).

Thank Bradley for igniting the recent press barbs, and thank his teammates for leaking them out from behind the sacred walls of the clubhouse!


Only the W Matters

By bullpenbrian - June 27, 2009 - 1:42 am Leave a comment.

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Friday should be all about the W.

What it’s not about is Bradley’s fit throwing, Soto’s pot smoking or the Cubs’ lack of clutch hitting.

For one game the Cubs managed enough runs to break a four-game losing streak, return to the .500 marker, and defeat its cross-town rivals.

And that’s the best news in the last week.

With all the negative energy surrounding the Cubs, a simple 5-4 win is a huge relief. For the time being, the extra curricular activities don’t matter.


Geo Gets Fat Off Munchies

By bullpenbrian - June 26, 2009 - 1:25 am Leave a comment.


Now we know the cause of Geovany Soto’s weight gain: the munchies.

I guess winning the Rookie of the Year Award means you celebrate by smoking a couple of fat ones?

Common mistake for a 26-year old, but am embarrassing mistake for a pro ball player.

Worse, it appears Soto took his sophomore season for granted, got lazy during the offseason, and dated Mary Jane instead of working out.

Not surprisingly, he’s now battling both his weight gain and batting average in year two.

You hope the embarrassment is enough to motivate Soto back to his old form. After all, no one likes having a muddy name.


Cubs Can’t Buy Clutch

By bullpenbrian - June 25, 2009 - 1:23 am Leave a comment.


Lou’s got one thing right; the Cubs’ lineup can’t do any worse.

To this point, however, a shake-up of the batting order has been nothing short of an empty promise on Lou’s part, and that needs to change.

Piniella further added that he’s not interested in holding a team meeting. I’m fine with that decision, but falling back to the .500 marker is yet another reality check for this club.

And, if Lou isn’t going to address the team he should at least address the batting slump with some lineup changes.


Kevin Gregg Is Not The Problem

By bullpenbrian - June 24, 2009 - 3:36 pm 2 comments.


Let’s not get overly critical of Kevin Gregg.

Despite leading the NL in blown saves last season, he’s pitch well with Chicago.

Prior to Ryan Raburn’s walk-off job, Gregg had strung together nearly 10 innings of scoreless baseball.

He’s held opponents scoreless in 20 of his last 23 outings, converted 11 of 14 save opportunities (78 percent), including seven-straight from May 1-29.

At the very least, he’s still on pace for Woody’s All Star season from a year ago (34 saves).

Of course the blown save hurts, they always do, but that’s part of the job. It’s up to Gregg to bounce back, and I think he will.


No Wrigley No Runs

By bullpenbrian - June 23, 2009 - 1:46 am 2 comments.


The Cubs are six games under .500 on the road.

Obviously, it’s not the pitching that’s put them at 13-19 away from Wrigley, but the lack of run scoring.

Entering Monday’s game, Chicago was batting 24 points lower on the road than at home.

Whatever the reasons are for not scoring, the Cubs won’t win the Central without an improved road record.



By bullpenbrian - June 22, 2009 - 1:50 am Leave a comment.

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