Sports by guys who like sports

Tuesday, June 20, 2006

Poor Cubbies

I honestly for once do feel bad for the Cubs. How does a sports franchise with such a loyal fan base in one of the largest cities of the country never compete for a championship? You could say bad luck, losing stars to injuries, Bartman grabbing the ball. However at what point does the organization take the blame? First, when are they going to step up and spend money to get the stars the fans in the city deserve? St. Louis is not near the market that Chicago is and their payrolls are relatively close. Second, it is like the organization has been content with losing, as long as they fill the stands, which they know they will each year, who cares about winning, not the management at least from an outsiders perspective. Finally, talent scouts, I have heard from my Cubs friends for a long time about the talent in their minor league system, and how they have the next Randy Johnson, Steve Carlton, Tom Seaver, Lou Brock (Had to throw that in for the Cards fans) however they still don't ever seem to be able to put it together. So either one of two things is happening, they are overhyping their players- Yankees or they need better managers at the minor league level to prepare them for the majors? Again not being a fan, I don't have the answer to this question. So I ask Cub fans, when do you finally demand that your organization actually steps up to the plate and produces something other than a division championship once every 15 years or so?

22 Comments:

  • Tim, I think most Cubs fans are now White Sox fans, so it is going to be hard getting an argument off this board. I think Prior still looks like Tom Seaver, but he can’t pitch like him.

    By the way, aren’t the Sox playing the Cards today? $50 bucks said you turned the game off in the 3rd inning when Mulder game up the 11 spot.

    Is your enter key broken?

    Go Astros…..


    Is your enter key broken?

    Go Astros…..

    By Anonymous Dillon, at 7:37 PM  

  • This is a hard one for me to weigh-in on. But let me say a few words in response as Tim has some things right and some wrong.

    First, the Cubs have spent some money. Granted, it doesn't seem to be the most well-spent when you see that Joe Girardi has a longer winning streak with the Marlins in two months than Dusty's had in almost 4 years. But I will say it sucks the Cubs are owned by a corporation. It's not like we have one face we can pinpoint (a la Mark Cuban, etc) to speak to. Ultimately the Tribune Company wants to make money and they are. But I also want to go this route...

    First, Hendry has done what I would expect, if not better. I would say I'd like to have insured Prior and Wood with some other guys, but he attempted to do that with Wade Miller and Dempster wasn't supposed to end up closing games. He has work to do though...see below.

    I'm finally about off the Dusty wagon. I'm not necessarily calling for his head b/c it's hard to do that when a guy hasn't had a healthy ballclub in basically 3 years. However, perhaps a change of leadership is what this team needs.

    I would like to see the Cubs reinvograte their minor league system. There is a lot of talent that's been produced - see Dontrelle Willis, Rickey Nolasco, John Koronka, etc. But I think the mindset isn't on par with the A's of 'get on base' - see Corey Patterson. While Corey's having a good season this season, he still is a free swinging hack and it's only a matter of time before the AL figures him out. The coaches need to teach our position players at an earlier point in their career to take pitches and force strikes.

    All that being said, our major league coaches go back and forth on this! One season or week you have Sarge / Gene Clines telling you to take pitches and the next you have them telling the hitters to hit the first pitch if it's good b/c it may be the only good one.

    Now...how to resolve it. I first trade Jacque Jones while he's going right to the Spankees. The fact the Royals were able to get Gathright from the D-Rays for a bag of balls (in my opinion) speaks to what's out there. I'd have taken Gathright for Jones, let alone a triple A pitcher. Then I'd try to resign Kerry Wood for a much discounted rate next season just b/c no one can really afford to invest too heavily in him.

    Then I'd go out and sign a free agent starter this offseason to supplement who we have. It may mean losing Maddog, which I'm not sure about but understand he may be gone.

    This season hasn't soured me as a Cubs fan and I'll continue to go to games. I simply love the team and the park. But I think their are organizational changes that could improve us for the long haul.

    - Conor

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