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Browsing posts from September, 2011

Tito To Cubs?

By bullpenbrian - September 30, 2011 - 3:01 am 7 comments.

If Terry Francona becomes available, which according to multiply sources seems likely, would you want him as the Cubs new manager?

In eight seasons with Boston he’s 192-games above .500 at (744-552). His team never finished with less than 86 wins (2006) or lower than third in the tough AL East.

His run also entails breaking Boston’s perceived curse with 2 pennants and 2 World Series championships, albeit with one of the league’s highest payrolls.

But if Tom Ricketts truly wants to bring a World Series winner to the North Side, and is willing to pay for it similar to Boston, is there a better candidate than Tito?

Francona may be tired of Boston’s oppressing fan fare, but he’s handled it with professionalism and poise throughout. Chicago would be no different.

And if given a roster that can win, Francona’s track record proves he’s capable as any to lead the Cubs to the promise land.

Introducing new Cubs manager, Terry–Tito–Francona! Has a nice ring to it, doesn’t it?

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March Madness In September!

By bullpenbrian - September 29, 2011 - 1:30 am 2 comments.

The Wild Card races felt a lot like March Madness. Crazy comebacks, buzzer beater-like endings and wild scenes of jubilation!

It was a night like no other in MLB history–and one we won’t soon forget–having witnessed the completion of two of the biggest September collapses ever!

What’s more, the Yankees, Red Sox and Braves were all within one out of victory, but lost.

Meanwhile, Tampa Bay rallied from seven runs down. Baltimore touched up Jonathan Papelbon for just his third blown save of the season, and the Cardinals advanced behind Chris Carpenter’s complete game gem.

The last was my only disappointment of the evening. Watching a shirtless Ryan Theriot celebrate with his Cardinal teammates, fully knowing the Cubs should have eliminated St. Louis this past weekend, was somewhat irritating. But otherwise, what a terrific night for MLB and its fans.

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Cubs Close Season, Summer

By bullpenbrian - September 28, 2011 - 2:00 am Leave a comment.

“The Green Fields of the Mind “

A. Bartlett Giamatti

-former president, Yale University, former commissioner, Major League Baseball, taken from Yale Alumni Magazine, November 1977.

“It breaks your heart. It is designed to break your heart. The game begins in the spring, when everything else begins again, and it blossoms in the summer, filling the afternoons and evenings, and then as soon as the chill rains come, it stops and leaves you to face the fall alone.

You count on it, rely on it to buffer the passage of time, to keep the memory of sunshine and high skies alive, and then just when the days are all twilight, when you need it most, it stops.”

-Today, September 28, a Wednesday marking the Cubs’ final game of 2011, leaves us with autumn chills, a long winter awaiting, and suddenly…summer is gone.

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Mike Quade Poll

By bullpenbrian - September 27, 2011 - 3:01 am Leave a comment.
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Homers, Castro & Soriano

By bullpenbrian - September 26, 2011 - 3:01 pm Leave a comment.

A few Cubs notes heading into the season’s final series this week in San Diego.

-Chicago has three players with 25 or more HR this year including Carlos Pena (28), Aramis Ramirez (25) & Alfonso Soriano (25).

Milwaukee is the only other club in the NL to match the same feat with Prince Fielder (35), Ryan Braun (33) & Corey Hart (25).

The last time the Cubs reached this same mark was 2004 when four players hit 25 or more HR: Moises Alou (39), Aramis (36), Sammy Sosa (35) & Derrek Lee (32).

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Cubs Need New Closer, Right?

By bullpenbrian - September 25, 2011 - 1:01 am Leave a comment.

I would be greatly disappointed if Carlos Marmol returns as the Cubs closer next year. And I think it’s fair to say I wouldn’t be the only one.

Marmol’s frequent inability to throw strikes has largely accounted for his 10 blown saves this season–the most in the majors.

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Mr. Cubs Race!

By bullpenbrian - September 24, 2011 - 1:01 am Leave a comment.

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Cubs On Verge Of 90-Losses

By bullpenbrian - September 23, 2011 - 2:40 am Leave a comment.

Two things to watch for as the Cubs’ season draws to a close over the final six games.

1.) The Cubs and Pirates are tied for fourth place in the NL Central.
2.) Chicago has a chance to ruin the Cardinals’ bid for the NL Wild Card.

The Cubs have managed a (27-23) record over its last 50 games to climb into a tie with Pittsburgh for fourth place in the division at (69-87).

The Peg Legs, meanwhile, have gone in the opposite direction. They’ve lost 40 of its last 56 games since leading the division at (53-47) 100-games into the season. 

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This Date In Cubs History

By bullpenbrian - September 22, 2011 - 2:22 am Leave a comment.

2001 — Alex Rodriguez hit his 48th home run, breaking Ernie Banks’ major league record for shortstops and lifting Texas to a 5-2 win over Anaheim.

2001 — Sammy Sosa became the first player to hit three home runs in a game three times in a season, but Moises Alou’s two-run shot rallied Houston to a 7-6 victory over the Chicago Cubs.

2004 — Greg Maddux picked up his 15th win of the season in Chicago’s 6-3 victory over Pittsburgh. Maddux reached 15 wins for a record 17th consecutive season. He surpassed Cy Young’s record of 15 consecutive 15-win seasons in 2003.

-Courtesy AP News Wire.

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Aramis Top F.A. At Third Base

By bullpenbrian - September 21, 2011 - 2:01 am Leave a comment.

I take Aramis Ramirez’s claim that he’s ‘probably’ played his last game at Wrigley Field with a grain of salt.

If anything, Ramirez and his agent, Paul Kinzer, are posturing for a new deal with Chicago, likely in the area of three to four more years, knowing the Cubs are without a viable option to fill his departure at third base.

Although Aramis appears peeved with the Cubs front office in a state of flux, he’s clearly the top-billing for free agent third basemen entering the offseason. 

That alone should keep Ramirez patient enough to see who Ricketts hires as his new GM, and what offer, if any, is presented to him following the season.

Going the free agent route to replace Ramirez is hardly an option for the Cubs. The 2012 F.A. class is mostly a mix of washed-up veterans and journeymen including: Wilson Betemit KC, Casey Blake LAD, Eric Chavez NYY, Mark DeRosa SF, Greg Dobbs PHI, Edwin Encarnacion TOR, Wes Helms FLA, Melvin Mora ARI & Miguel Tejada.

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