Cubs Lose a Tough One

Milwaukee Brewers 9

Chicago Cubs 5

They couldn’t make it three in a row but there was some good things to come out of last night’s game against the Brewers.  Reed Johnson hit a three run homer which I don’t need to preach about how good a player he is.  The Cubs are the only team in the Majors that haven’t won three in a row.

 I guess everyone is getting worried including the Ricketts.  Something tells me you don’t want to get the boss upset,”Everyone in the organization is frustrated.” Ricketts told the media, “Mike’s done a great job, I have 100 percent confidence in Jim.”

Now, this might seem like everything is fine on the surface but I can guarantee that one of them will not be there after the All Star break.  Hey, he’s the captain of the ship and his job is to be cool under pressure and say all the right things to the media, but as every fan knows that  when teams aren’t winning, the coach and the GM are the first to go.

—Mark Gauthier

Cubs Have Speed

I don’t believe in curses.  However, just in case this picture might help ward off anything that comes our way.

There’s an old saying from the film Rocky, “Speed is what we need, we need more speed.”  Mickey said that.  I like the saying,”I’m going to make you crap thunder and eat lightning.” a heck of a lot better.

The Cubs have now won two in a row. Aramis Ramirez slammed one into the left bleachers and Geovanny Soto got one too but it was the steller play of Tony Campana and Starlin Castro that sealed the victory in the tenth inning.

Like what Mickey said about eating lightning, Tony Campana’s speed landed him on second and Starlin Castro got a walk-off to score Campana.

Reed Johnson got his first hit since being back in the Cubs lineup.  Now, when Marlon Byrd gets back the Cubs will be flying.

This is exactly the win the Cubs needed I think.  It’s not just against any team but the Brewers.  It’s two in a row now and I think it’s about getting that confidence that can really get the bats swinging.  That’s really a huge thing.

—Mark Gauthier

Not So Bad

There’s an old cliche that says, “They’re great on paper.”  This applies to the Chicago Cubs.  It’s funny you know, the Toronto Blue Jays on paper have an Ok team, but this year, they’re exceeding expectations.  The Cubs on the other hand, for some reason can’t get it together.  They have one good game followed by a really poor one and then climb out of the woodwork and pull together an amazing game.  That’s baseball.

The Cubs are seven games back.  A few years ago they were ten games back at the start of August and came back to win their division.  That’s also baseball.

There have been some outstanding performances this year like Darwin Barney and Starlin Castro who should have no problem making it to the Allstar game.  There havy been some great surprises like Tony Campana and returning stars like Kerry Wood and Reed Johnson.

To be fair, Andrew Cashner has been injured and now Marlon Byrd so injuries have played a crucial part in this year’s fluctuation.  I’m confident the team will turn around.  I think after the Allstar break, we’re going to see a much better Cubs team.  No, a more consistent team.

—Mark Gauthier

Cubs Snagged a Marlin

Ok, maybe the spelling is wrong.  Marlon Byrd hit his first home run in, well a long time.  Yes, the game kind of went like the Cubs season.  Back and forth.  Now, the Cubs record stands at 18-23. 

I think they did it for the Gauthier. 

So, let’s just see how the Cubs won the game.  They got big hits by the big guys in the top of the order and how about that home run by Reed Johnson?  I don’t know if Reed will ever make it to Cooperstown, but here’s my argument for why he should be considered or at the very least made an honourary member if that makes sense.  Reed Johnson doesn’t get the big numbers but his consistency and heart exemplify what ballplayers should be and that alone is a great reason why he should be there someday.

All right, where did Tony Campana come from?  Holy Crap he’s quick.  Did you see that play for home?  Wow!!

I can’t wait for the weekend.

—Mark Gauthier

First Place!!!

So, I’ve been out of the loop the last couple of days.  I go to check up on the latest happenings and what do I see?  First place!!!

Maybe it’s the usual cliches of hard work and dedication, but in this case it’s true.  Now there’s a three way tie for first place. Incredible.

Not to be a “told you so” but I did mention picking up Reed Johnson was a good choice.  Here’s the post.

What about Alfonso Soriano?  He’s having a killer year!

Isn’t that a crazy statistic?  1-1, 2-2,3-3,4-4, 5-5, 6-6, 7-7, 8-8, 9-9

Win one lose won.

Nope, That aggresive kind of play is what will lead the Cubs to the Series.

—Mark Gauthier

 

Castro is Ready

It’s been a few days since my last post and sure enough, there’s been quite a bit of news and happenings.

Randy Wells is the fourth starter, Johnson’s made the Opening Day roster, Castro is ready and so is Robert Redford.

First of all, let’s talk about Starlin Castro.  Sophomore Jinx and Starlin Castro probably won’t be in the same sentence.  Although, I’m jinxing it by saying it.  He’s had an outstanding preseason.  Yeah, he’s made some errors but he’s batting .351 this spring so yeah, he’s ready to go!

Yesterday he had a great game against the Mariners, hitting a three run double.

It’s a “Natural” to have Robert Redford throw out the opening pitch seeing he knocked out the Wrigley scoreboard.

I’m glad Randy Wells made the line up.  He’s pitched hard. 

Hey, what about Reed Johnson?  Arguably the best pick up the Cubs made in the off season, now before everyone says,”What?” Matt Garza and Carlos Pena excluded.

Reed Johnson is the best bang for your buck player in baseball.  I’m not making any bold predictions, but Starlin Castro and Reed Johnson are going to be two reasons why the Cubs will be in the post season this year.

now you can say,”What?”

—Mark Gauthier

 

Working Out The Kinks

So, I missed yesterday’s ballgame.  We had company, but It looks like I didn’t miss much.  Spring Training is a time for working out the kinks, clearing the dust and cobwebs  from the corners and finding out just where things go.  Spring cleaning works pretty much the same way around our house.  I love cleaning.  I love spring training.  People think I’m crazy,”It doesn’t count.”  or,”What’s the point?”

So, I after seeing the score against the Padres (and for those of you not in the know, it was 14-4) a pretty bad score by any other standard but this being Cactus League play, let’s break down the Box Score:

Fukodome got one hit and a run. He continues to shine in the lead-off position.  Let’s keep him there. 

Marlon Byrd wasn’t in the lineup.

One word:  TYLER COLVIN.  ok, that’s two words but he got one hit, one run and two walks.  He’s going to be a star this year.

Reed Johnson is his usual best with a hit and a run.  The Cubs did a great job getting him back.

Pitching is still a little shaky.  Matt Garza is struggling but he got off to a rough start but you know, the best players bring their game come the regular season.  I’d give him some rest.

Despite yesterday’s loss, the Cubs are in good shape for Opening Day.

—Mark Gauthier

Fight Night!

Yesterday, Carlos Silva and Aramis Ramirez mixed it up in the dugout  during the first inning after three errors were committed. 

Whether it was nerves, frustration or anger, this has to stop.  They won’t be playing ball in October if this keeps up.  I mean, I know that tensions can get up there at times but these guys do get paid a lot of money so acting professional is a good step in the right direction.

Mike Quade will address the situation today.  Let’s hope they’ll get over it.

Ok, and the Cubs lost.  I’m not worried, in fact a 12-5 loss to a divisional rival is a good thing at this stage.  When they get back to Wrigley, they’ll be polished.

Let me breakdown the game:

I’m eating crow.  I admit I was too harsh on Fukodome.  He’s doing really well in the lead-off with 2 AB and 2 R.  I apologise Kosuke!

Castro has been great with 3 RBI’s

Soriano’s stepping up and Pena’s been finding a groove.

Oh yeah, Welcome back Reed-we missed you!

—-Mark Gauthier

Fukodome to Lead-Off

It looks like  Mike Quade has chosen Kosuke Fukodome in the lead-off position.  Although, he’s going to mix it up a bit and put Reed Johnson in the position on Monday then Fukodome will be back on Tuesday.

Hey, this is what spring training is about and I completely forgot about Johnson in the Lead-Off.  That might work, you know?

I don’t know.  Something tells me I don’t trust Fukodome’s bat.  Is he erratic?  We’ll have to wait and see.

 

—Mark Gauthier

You Can Always Come Home

There has been some returning veterans  this spring who have come back to the Cubs after spending time around the league.  Kerry Wood, Todd Wellemeyer, Reed Johnson, Augie Ojeda, and Scott Moore have all been invited to camp for non-roster positions.

In Kerry Wood’s case, he took a pay cut to come back to the Cubs.  I like that signing because he was a huge part of the Cubs success a few years ago and he’ll probably finish his career in Chicago.

Reed Johnson is returning to the Cubs after a brief campaign with the LA Dodgers.  He’s a great player and I’ve always been a fan of his from his time in Toronto.

This is Ojeda’s third time around with Chicago.  At 36, he’ll likely finish his career here also.

Scott Moore and Ojeda turned down other offers to go back with the Cubs and this is a good sign because these are the players a team wants.  Character guys who want to be there competing everyday and even if the team doesn’t fare well this year, we know it’s going to be competitive. 

 Who can forget Kerry Wood’s 20 strikeout game shutout in 1998.  Yes, hopefully, Wood will bring back some of the heat and help lead the Cubs back to the World Series.

—Mark Gauthier