2014 Chicago Cubs Thread

Discussion in 'Chicago Cubs/White Sox Forum' started by little bear, Nov 7, 2013.

  1. little bear

    little bear Assistant Head Coach

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    View: http://espn.go.com/blog/chicago/cubs/post/_/id/25792/first-half-positives-prospects-excel

    First-half positives: The kids can play


    CHICAGO -- As the first half of the Chicago Cubs' season comes to an end, it might go down as the most positive of the three under president of baseball operations Theo Epstein. And that’s with a 40-54 record. The positives extend from the majors down to Triple-A. Here are five of them -- ranked in order -- with five negatives coming on Tuesday:

    1. Kris Bryant

    A minor leaguer is at the top of the list because Bryant hasn’t slowed down since he was drafted No. 2 overall last season. And he’s vaulted to the top of the Cubs' prospect standings with 31 home runs and 81 RBIs at the break. He has 107 combined strikeouts in Double-A and Triple-A, but that’s meaningless as he’s hit a combined .346.

    “You have to give something to get something,” Bryant said recently of striking out.

    The Cubs will take those totals -- or anything close to it -- once he gets to the majors. As sure things go, and there are few if any in baseball, he comes the closest. And his pattern has been the same since college: a small period of struggles followed by adjustments followed by a streak that hasn’t stopped. Bryant may not make it to Wrigley Field this year, but he’ll be there soon enough.

    With right-handed power a premium in baseball these days, Bryant stands as a potential franchise-changing player.

    2. Jake Arrieta

    While many believed Arrieta had the stuff of an ace or at least a No. 2 pitcher, there seemed to be a need for some gradual advancement. He missed all of spring training because of a sore shoulder that set him back further and then came out of the gate in May looking just OK. He took off after a few starts and hasn't looked back, flirting with no-hitters and perfect games. His stuff has been insanely good and hard to hit. He would be third in the majors in ERA (1.95) if he qualified, behind Clayton Kershaw and Adam Wainwright. That's some pretty good company. He'll still need to perform throughout the second half to stamp himself as an elite hurler, but right now Arrieta is proving his head has caught up to his arm.

    3. The Bullpen

    Yes, this ranks higher than Starlin Castro or Anthony Rizzo because, if we take a step back, that duo's resurgence isn’t all that surprising. One was a two-time All-Star before this season and the other had only to raise his batting average from last year to advance his game. But the bullpen has been a sore spot since the day Epstein & Co. arrived on the scene. Their mistakes with Carlos Marmol and Jose Veras will be long forgotten if the young arms they employ now take the proper steps. No one, and I mean no one, could have predicted Neil Ramirez as a lockdown setup man (1.08 ERA, 3 saves) and Hector Rondon accumulating 11 saves in the first half. And remember, one was acquired in the Rule 5 draft (Rondon) and the other (Ramirez) was a player to be named later in the Matt Garza deal. There are no guarantees with the bullpen from one year to the next, but these arms have a chance of sticking around for a while and growing together.

    4. Starlin Castro/Anthony Rizzo

    There were many doubters of both players, but Rizzo's and Castro's All-Star selections tell the story of their first half. They both deserve it, especially in putting up numbers with very little help around them in the lineup. It’s not about protection, it’s about pitching stress. Opponents felt very little of it until Rizzo and Castro came up in the lineup, and then they could “relax” again for another inning or two. When they get more dangerous hitters around them -- think Arismendy Alcantara and Kris Bryant -- their numbers might go up even more. Rizzo and Castro were roundly criticized and had major issues at the plate last season and both responded with first halves that have them at Tuesday's game in Minnesota instead of vacationing.

    5. Arismendy Alcantara

    Five games hardly makes a career -- think back to Junior Lake last season -- but there is definitely something about Alcantara that should excite the most pessimistic Cubs fan. Unlike Lake, Alcantara has been moving up in the prospect rankings for several years. There are many in the game who have scouted him and more than liked what they’ve seen. His switch-hitting ability, his defensive prowess in the infield and outfield, his surprising power for his size and his speed put him in a great position to succeed. That’s not to mention his baseball instincts, which those who played with him at Triple-A Iowa rave about. More than anything, he represents the future of the Cubs. Not some ambiguous idea of rebuilding but an actual product of the farm system who’s shown a lot of talent. He was an extra-base machine in Iowa this year and already has five extra-base hits in five games in the majors. Now he needs to make a major league career out of it and the Cubs might have found their leadoff man of the future.

    Honorable mention: Wrigley Renovations

    Before Sunday’s first-half finale, Rizzo discussed with reporters the need for an improved clubhouse, as all the new amenities, he claims, will help the players prepare for games. Rizzo should finally get his wish as renovations have been approved by the city and construction is getting ready to begin. The Cubs may have some tough days ahead with rooftop owners, but at least the hurdles of starting have been overcome and Rizzo should get his new clubhouse in due time.

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  2. little bear

    little bear Assistant Head Coach

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    View: http://espn.go.com/chicago/mlb/story/_/id/11236721/chicago-cubs-sue-fake-mascot-got-bar-fight

    Cubs sue over fake mascot


    CHICAGO -- The Chicago Cubs have filed a lawsuit against several people whom the team accuses of being behind a fake mascot that has been engaging in bad behavior near Wrigley Field, including getting into a bar fight that was captured on video and posted online.

    [​IMG]

    The team filed its lawsuit on Friday in federal court in Chicago against John Paul Weier, Patrick Weier and three other unnamed individuals whom the team says dress in the bear costume, the Chicago Sun-Times reported.
    The fake mascot -- not to be confused with the team's new official mascot, "Clark the Cub" -- wears a Cubs hat and No. 78 jersey that has the name "Billy Cub" on the back. The team says the defendants are trying to pass their character off as an official representative of the team, and it accuses them of trademark infringement, injuring the team's reputation and unfair competition.
    The team accuses those behind the fake mascot of demanding tips for photos, making "rude, profane and derogatory remarks and gesticulations," and punching a man at a bar near the ballpark. The punch, which was caught on video, was posted on YouTube and was widely viewed. The Cubs say fans were confused and thought the official team mascot had thrown the punch instead.
    The lawsuit wants the defendants to stop using the character and requests "deliver for destruction" the costume's components. It also is seeking payment for damages and legal fees.
    The nature of the Weiers' relationship wasn't immediately clear, and neither of them could be reached for comment.


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  3. The Benjamin

    The Benjamin George Halas Staff Member

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    Good riddance to him
  4. riczaj01

    riczaj01 DaBears Ditka DBS Writer

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    Thought they were dealing w/that last year also...wth?
  5. The Benjamin

    The Benjamin George Halas Staff Member

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    They were. Cubs sent him a cease and desist letter, as did the MLB. He ignored them.

    Now Cubs are suing
  6. little bear

    little bear Assistant Head Coach

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    View: http://espn.go.com/blog/chicago/cubs/post/_/id/26082/edwin-jackson-no-rookie-when-it-comes-to-trades

    Jackson no rookie in regard to trade talk


    CHICAGO -- Edwin Jackson, who has played for eight teams and been dealt six times in his career, is once again hearing his name floated as the trade deadline approaches.

    After a 13-3 loss to the San Diego Padres on Thursday night, the Chicago Cubs starter said his perspective with regard to being traded hasn’t changed much from when he first got moved.
    “I think I’ve always looked at it the same,” Jackson said. “It’s one of those things that you can’t worry about and you can’t control. That’s pretty much been my take on it since the first time that I’ve been traded. I’ve been traded after All-Star years. I’ve been traded after subpar seasons. I’ve been traded after bad seasons. I’ve been traded in the middle of seasons. Most of the time when you see people get traded, they go to a playoff contending team, so all trades aren’t bad.


    “At the present time, I’m right here with Chicago, and that’s what I’m focusing on. I’m not really focusing too far down the road.”

    The Cubs already have traded away two-fifths of their rotation for the third season in a row. And with the team headed toward its fifth straight fifth-place finish in the NL Central, the trade rumors aren’t letting up.

    Jackson said he and his teammates can’t fret the rumors or the departure of Jeff Samardzija and Jason Hammel, who were traded over the Independence Day weekend.

    “It happens,” Jackson said. “At the end of the day, we all have a job to do; we all have to go out and pitch. We can’t pitch for those guys, and we aren’t those guys. It’s a tough loss for the team. Those two guys were pitching real well. But at the end of the day, sometimes things happen that you can’t control.

    “We can’t let two guys that we lose dictate our season. We still have to go out, and we still have to play baseball games. We still have to finish the season, whether those guys are here or not.”

    After giving up five runs (four earned) in five-plus innings Thursday night, Jackson has a 5.68 ERA and a 9.8 percent walk rate on the season.

    Jackson is in the second year of a four-year, $52 million deal with the Cubs. During that time, he has racked up 291 innings with the team and posted a disappointing 5.26 ERA.

    When Jackson was signed, a point of emphasis was on his ability to eat innings. But he has thrown more than six innings only three times this season, and hasn’t done so since May 17.

    “Coming back from the break, I’ve been feeling pretty good,” Jackson said. “I feel like I can throw strikes and pound the strike zone. It’s just one of those things that you work off that and try to go deep in games and save the bullpen a little bit.”

    Though the results haven’t been exactly as hoped, Jackson is trying to focus on the positives in his recent outings. The righty has walked only one batter -- which came after his hand cramped Thursday night and he lost command of his fastball -- in his 10 1/3 innings since the All-Star break.

    “I haven’t been walking a lot of people; earlier in the season I was struggling with walks and big innings,” Jackson said. “But I’ve been feeling pretty good after the break.”

    Despite what Jackson feels has been better play of late, it’s hard to imagine a player with his recent performance and current contract garnering much trade interest.

    Prior to joining the Cubs, Jackson had a 4.29 ERA and averaged 193 innings per season since becoming a full-time starter in 2007.

    The Cubs’ best bet might be to hope Jackson can soon show signs of returning to the innings eater with a league-average ERA they thought they were getting when he signed with the team more than 18 months ago.

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  7. little bear

    little bear Assistant Head Coach

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    View: http://espn.go.com/chicago/mlb/story/_/id/11277141/chicago-cubs-trade-darwin-barney-los-angeles-dodgers

    Dodgers acquire Darwin Barney


    CHICAGO -- The Cubs have traded second baseman Darwin Barney and cash considerations to the Los Angeles Dodgers for a player to be named later.
    Barney, 28, was designated for assignment last Tuesday when Emilio Bonifacio was activated from the disabled list. Barney lost his starting job early this year as Bonifacio got off to a hot start.
    When Bonifacio went down with an oblique strain last month, Barney started playing more and was hitting .385 in July. But a two-day paternity leave opened the door for rookie Arismendy Alcantara, who was called up in Barney's place.
    A fast start for Alcantara has turned into a permanent job, leaving Barney to be demoted. Barney was hitting .230 with two home runs and 16 RBIs in 72 games this season. He's a career .244 hitter.


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  8. little bear

    little bear Assistant Head Coach

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    Damn, I was really hoping the Cubs would trade for Jon Lester, now he's heading west to Oakland.

    A's have done some really good work thsi season, looks like they're gonna go all the way.
  9. little bear

    little bear Assistant Head Coach

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    View: http://espn.go.com/chicago/mlb/story/_/id/11292420/chicago-cubs-send-james-russell-emilio-bonifacio-atlanta-braves-prospect

    James Russell, Emilio Bonifacio dealt


    CHICAGO -- The Chicago Cubs have traded left-hander James Russell and infielder/outfielder Emilio Bonifacio along with cash considerations to the Atlanta Braves for Class-A catcher Victor Caratini, the Cubs announced Thursday afternoon.
    Russell, 28, was 0-2 with a 3.51 ERA in 44 games this season after appearing in 151 games for the Cubs in 2012-2013. He was seen saying goodbye to teammates and fans as he walked from the bullpen to the dugout in the seventh inning of the Cubs game against the Colorado Rockies on Thursday afternoon.
    Bonifacio, 29, is hitting .279 with two home runs and 18 RBI's to go along with 14 stolen bases this year. Since returning from an oblique strain which kept him out of the lineup for over a month he was hitting .400. Bonifacio was held out of the lineup both Wednesday and Thursday in anticipation of a trade.
    Caratini was a second round pick of the Braves in 2013 hitting .279 with five home runs, 42 RBI's in 87 games for Class-A Rome.


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    Apparently they also got a draft pick and some $$$.
  10. little bear

    little bear Assistant Head Coach

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    View: http://espn.go.com/chicago/mlb/story/_/id/11308398/chicago-cubs-call-javier-baez

    Cubs call up Javier Baez


    The Chicago Cubs will call up prized infield prospect Javier Baez, who will make his major league debut on Tuesday against the Colorado Rockies.
    The Cubs' first-round pick in 2011, Baez, ranked by ESPN.com's Keith Law as the eighth-best prospect in baseball, has recovered from a slow start in his first season at Triple-A Iowa. After batting just .172 in April, Baez has trended up each month since.
    In the 20 games following the Triple-A All-Star break, he hit .342 with nine homers and a 1.159 OPS. He batted .300 with 10 home runs in July and hit his 22nd and 23 home runs on Sunday. For the season, the 21-year-old Baez is slashing .260/.323/.510 with 80 RBIs.
    A shortstop for much of his career, Baez, who hit 37 home runs between Class A and Double-A last season, has played more second base lately in anticipation of a big league call-up because the Cubs have three-time All-Star Starlin Castro entrenched at short.
    Arismendy Alcantara, a 22-year-old infield prospect called up to the Cubs on July 8, likely will shift from second base to play mostly center field with Baez in the lineup.
    Baez played in the Futures Game during the All-Star festivities in Minneapolis, hitting a home run.



    View: http://espn.go.com/blog/chicago/jon-greenberg/post/_/id/419/baez-makes-cubs-exciting-and-watchable

    Baez makes Cubs exciting -- and watchable


    When Chicago Cubs general manager Jed Hoyer met the media after trading infielder Emilio Bonifacio at the deadline last week, the giant middle infielder in the room was Javier Baez.

    In the Wrigley Field lunchroom, reporters asked Hoyer if this move would presage the promotion of Baez, who has been tearing up Triple-A pitching after a slow start. It makes sense, right?

    Hoyer first demurred at the question and talked about "whiteboarding" the organizational structure as if he was talking to the Harvard Business Review.

    Then, realizing he was talking to sports writers, he reiterated the front office's most common talking point when it comes to prospects: You can't rush the maturing process due to outside events.
    "We're not going to change our timetable on any of our prospects based on a moves we made at the big league level," Hoyer said. "When we feel like those guys are ready to contribute, we'll do that."


    Call me crazy, but the 21-year-old Baez was ready to contribute on July 31, just as he'll be ready when he joins the Cubs on Aug. 5 in Denver. Once he began playing second base on July 17, his prospect clock was ticking.

    While we knew Baez, barring injury, would be up this month, the news was met with great excitement when it was leaked Monday afternoon.

    When is the last time Cubs fans had something to be excited about on the major league level?

    This move, and the added meaning it represents, certainly qualifies as welcoming news for a fan base that has had to focus more on minor league updates than the daily drudgery of the major league team since president Theo Epstein started his teardown rebuilding project in 2012.

    It's apropos that Baez, considered one of the top power-hitting prospects in the minors, hit two homers in his last game for Iowa.

    Baez proved he wasn't ready for the majors when he struggled to start the Triple-A season. But he showed the kind of step-by-step adjustment the organization expects out of prospects when he hit .300 in July with 10 homers and a .345 on-base percentage. Nineteen of his 33 hits last month were for extra bases, giving him a .655 slugging percentage.

    In the 20 games following the Triple-A All-Star break, he hit .342 with nine homers and a 1.159 OPS. Baez finished his four-year minor league career hitting .260 with 24 doubles, 23 homers and 80 RBIs for the Iowa Cubs.

    In summation, he was ready.

    The Cubs knew this but there was no rush, considering the only race they are in is for a top-five draft pick in 2015.

    The Cubs obviously wanted to play Bonifacio, one of their few certain trade chips, before the deadline. Once he was dealt, I figured the Cubs would wait a few days, maybe a week or two, to bring up Baez.

    Less than a week and here we go. After a three-game series in Denver, the Cubs return home for a weekend series against Tampa Bay starting Friday. Good seats still available.

    The Cubs had already priced that series at the two highest levels, with Friday and Sunday at "marquee" pricing and Saturday one of eight scheduled "platinum" games. The cheapest tickets were going for about $35 on the secondary market when the news was announced, or $41.66 with tax on the Cubs' website.
    One thing is for sure, the Cubs will be watchable again, especially if Baez keeps hitting. The team is struggling to draw viewers, at least according to Nielsen ratings. I'm guessing Tuesday's game will set a season record on Comcast SportsNet.


    While Epstein and his front office are getting their rightful due for the relatively quick transformation of the farm system, it's helpful to remember Baez is the last of the Jim Hendry draft picks, even though Hendry will take no credit for Baez.

    Even if he were still the general manager, he'd credit the scouts and scouting director Tim Wilken. In this case, he already knew he was fired after a sitdown with Tom Ricketts and agreed to stay on through the draft before the firing was official.

    In my column the day Hendry was canned, I quoted a source who was in the room when Baez was drafted ninth overall in 2011. He said Hendry "acted like this guy would be playing third base for him for the next 10 years."

    Ironically, Baez's first home game will be against Chris Archer, whom Hendry traded in the Matt Garza deal, his unsuccessful last-ditch effort to save his job.

    Now it's time for Cubs fans to celebrate, or at least it's time to enjoy watching games again, because the new era of Cubs baseball is really beginning.

    Baez is up to bat, outfielder Jorge Soler is on deck (expect him up in September) and in the dugout, Kris Bryant is taking Wonder Boy out of its case.

    The big league Cubs are almost ready to matter again. It should feel good.

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    And so it begins! :woot:

    Go Cubs!!
  11. shark86x

    shark86x Pro-Bowler SuperFan

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    After being completely demoralized in the late 60's, suffering for a long time only to get hope again but have it splattered above the third base wall, FINALLY things MAY be looking better for the Cubs.
  12. little bear

    little bear Assistant Head Coach

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    http://www.cbssports.com/mlb/eye-on-baseball/24650555/reports-cubs-claim-jacob-turner

    Reports: Cubs claim Jacob Turner

    The Cubs have claimed recently-designated starting pitcher Jacob Turner off waivers from the Marlins, multiple outlets are reporting (Ken Rosenthal).
    Turner was on revocable waivers, so the Marlins could pull him back, however, since he was designated for assignment, pulling him back would mean they'd then place him on outright waivers. If that happened, the order would remain the same to claim Turner and only the Rockies would be in order before the Cubs. Basically, it seems pretty likely that the Cubs will flip a very minor prospect to the Marlins for Turner.
    Some of the shine has come off Turner after his big-league struggles, as he is 4-7 with a 5.97 ERA and 1.65 WHIP. On the other hand, here's what I said about Turner yesterday: "Still, he's only 23 and last year had a 3.74 ERA in 20 starts. Also, a few advanced stats show he had pretty bad luck this season, such as a 4.01 FIP, 3.93 xFIP and .368 allowed batting average on balls in play."
    Turner was the ninth overall pick in the 2009 draft and was the main component in the trade that landed the Tigers Anibal Sanchez and Omar Infante. He was once a top-15 prospect in all of baseball. Given that he's only 23, there's still plenty of time for him to achieve his promise.
    The move for the Cubs seems a no-brainer, especially in light of their need to develop pitching and how well pitching coach Chris Bosio has worked with several others in the recent past, such as Jake Arrieta this season.


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    http://www.mlbtraderumors.com/2014/08/cubs-designate-nate-schierholtz-for-assignment.html

    Cubs Designate Nate Schierholtz For Assignment

    The Cubs have designated outfielder Nate Schierholtz for assignment, tweets Mark Gonzales of the Chicago Tribune. With the move, roster space was created for Kyuji Fujikawa‘s activation from the 60-day DL.
    Schierholtz, a 30-year-old left-handed hitter, was playing on a $5MM salary this season in his final year of arbitration eligibility. Unless Chicago can find a taker for all or part of that figure, they’ll be on the hook for most (if not all) of the money left owing.
    The veteran of eight MLB campaigns had struggled to a .192/.240/.300 slash through 341 plate appearances this year, after posting a strong .251/.301/.470 line in 503 trips to bat in 2013. He had actually turned in three straight seasons with above-average OPS marks before hitting a wall this year.


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  13. The Benjamin

    The Benjamin George Halas Staff Member

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    Like both moves
  14. little bear

    little bear Assistant Head Coach

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    • Like Like x 1
  15. shark86x

    shark86x Pro-Bowler SuperFan

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    Hey! Hey!
  16. little bear

    little bear Assistant Head Coach

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    http://www.chicagotribune.com/sport...s-bits-cubs-rays-spt-0809-20140809-story.html

    Cubs miss on Cole Hamels but show a will to spend

    The Cubs knew they had little chance of making a deal for Phillies left-hander Cole Hamels after putting in a waiver claim Wednesday.
    They obviously don't need Hamels this season, but considered it a long shot worth taking to have one of the game's best pitchers under their control through 2018, if a deal could be made.
    To no one's surprise, a deal could not be reached between the two organizations, and the Phillies pulled Hamels back from waivers Friday.
    So Hamels will remain with the Phillies the rest of the year, while the Cubs showed potential free-agent pitchers they have money to spend this winter.
    Bosio's lab: The Cubs acquired 23-year-old Marlins right-hander Jacob Turner, whom they claimed on waivers, for Class A pitchers Jose Arias and Tyler Bremer.
    Turner, whom the Tigers selected with the ninth pick of the 2009 draft, never lived up to his potential, going 9-21 with a 4.77 ERA for the Tigers and Marlins. He will be another reclamation project for pitching coach Chris Bosio, who has helped turn around Paul Maholm, Scott Feldman, Jake Arrieta and Jason Hammel the last three seasons.
    "We've had some success with talented pitchers who were going through tough periods," Cubs president Theo Epstein said. "Getting them here, let them re-set a little … We're hopeful that will happen with Jacob. … Between now and next spring training there are things we can work together on."
    Wait till next year: Epstein said it's an organizational goal to "vertically integrate the entire system." With Javier Baez already up and Cuban slugger Jorge Soler in the express lane at Triple-A Iowa, could third base phenom Kris Bryant conceivably get a look in September?
    No chance, said Epstein, who reiterated his stance on making Bryant play a full minor league season.
    Epstein said it was not a "business" decision, though it makes perfect economic sense not to start Bryant's arbitration clock this year.


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  17. Jimmors

    Jimmors The Rhymenoceros Staff Member SuperFan

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  18. shark86x

    shark86x Pro-Bowler SuperFan

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    Geez dude, let that one go over the wall. the kids down there would much rather fight over a ball than to see a face splattered all over.

    nice catch and throw though...
  19. little bear

    little bear Assistant Head Coach

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    And here we go again.

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    http://www.chicagotribune.com/sport...ield-renovations-rooftops-20140814-story.html

    Rooftop owners sue city over Wrigley renovations

    [​IMG]

    A group of owners of rooftop clubs overlooking Wrigley Field sued the City of Chicago today in Cook County Circuit Court, asking a judge to review the decision that allowed the Chicago Cubs to build as many as seven outfield that would block views from the rooftops.
    The rooftop owners are requesting an administrative review of the Commission on Chicago Landmarks’ decision last month to allow the Cubs to move forward on renovating the 100-year-old ballpark. The plaintiffs allege that the decision violates a 2004 contract the rooftop owners signed with the Cubs that guaranteed their views into the ballpark in exchange for 17 percent of the clubs’ annual revenues.
    The unanimous decision by the landmarks commission in July gave the team the go-ahead to build as many as seven signs along the outfield walls.


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  20. little bear

    little bear Assistant Head Coach

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    http://espn.go.com/chicago/mlb/stor...disabled-list-starlin-castro-bereavement-list

    Cubs put Edwin Jackson on DL

    CHICAGO -- The Chicago Cubs put struggling pitcher Edwin Jackson on the disabled list with a right lat strain and placed All-Star shortstop Starlin Castro on the bereavement list on Thursday.
    Jackson, who is in the second year of a four-year, $52 million contract, lasted just 2 2/3 innings in an 8-3 loss to the San Francisco Giants, allowing seven runs to fall to 6-14 on the season. He has a 7.91 ERA in four August starts and admitted on Thursday that he's been battling through the issue for the last few starts. He finally decided it was in the best interest of the team and himself to take a break and make sure he didn't make the injury worse.
    "You can try to fight through something as much as you want, especially as a starter," Jackson said. "If you're going out and you're continually going deep in games, then you try to fight through. But I haven't been able to do that. I've pretty much been battling within myself. It hasn't been beneficial for myself or the team."
    Jackson said he missed a start toward the end of last season with the same issue. He described the injury as a "soreness" and isn't sure how much time he'd miss, but hopes to be ready to come back in early September.
    Jackson said he hasn't been happy with his performance during his time with the Cubs, putting up a 5.47 ERA in 314 1/3 innings since the start of 2013.
    "I don't think I've proven to the fans or the organization of Chicago what I can do, what I'm capable of doing," Jackson said. "Maybe a glimpse here and there, but I still think I have a lot of upside, and I still have a lot to bring to the table. I just haven't proved it. At the end of the day, you have to go out and do it on the field."
    Jackson has two years and $22 million remaining on his contract after this season.
    Castro is tending to a death in his family in the Dominican Republic. He was scratched from the lineup about two hours before Wednesday's game, the first game he has missed this season.
    Renteria said he spoke to Castro before he left the team and the young shortstop was very upset about his loss.
    Per league rules, Castro will miss at least three days and up to seven days. He is hitting .284 with 13 home runs and 64 RBIs this season.
    The Cubs recalled infielder Logan Watkins and reliever Zac Rosscup from Triple-A Iowa.


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