Chicago's Inside Pitch

Chicago's Inside Pitch

At home on the road

Posted by Bruce on Sun, 09/14/2008 - 18:14
The Cubs had full run of the "home" clubhouse here at Miller Park. Well almost full run. The door to Brewers manager Ned Yost's office is locked, meaning Lou had to use the coaches room. "That's all right, I'm in the coaches room," Lou said. "Perfect. Nice and roomy in there." The Astros were none too happy about flying up from Houston today for a pair of "home" games. Looking around at the crowd, it's a sea of blue. Even so the Astros were making the best of the situation. But they did have plenty to say.

First impressions from Milwaukee

Posted by Bruce on Sun, 09/14/2008 - 15:05
First off, the drive wasn't bad. A lot of rain, but not a lot of cars on the construction-riddled Tri-State. For starters, the Cubs have the Brewers or "home" clubhouse here at Miller Park. I thought that, too, might make Astros owner Drayton McLane mad, but apparently, the Astros wanted the more "familiar" visitors clubhouse. Maybe the Cubs can find a few state secrets in the Brewers' clubhouse. But with the way the Brewers have been going lately, maybe not. Most of the stadium workers here aren't doing any actual work. They're watching the Packers game on TV out beyond left field, and they yell every time the Packers do something.

Milwaukee it is

Posted by Bruce on Sat, 09/13/2008 - 21:02
What took 'em so long? Major League Baseball finally announced tonight that the Cubs and Astros will play single games at Milwaukee's Miller Park tomorrow night at 7:05 and Monday afternoon at 1:05 to make up for two of the games lost in Houston to Hurricane Ike. A third, game, if necessary, will be played Monday, Sept. 29 in Houston. That game will be played if it affects the postseason. The Astros will be the home team for both games in Milwaukee. More to come in Sunday's Daily Herald.

Cubs hold tight Saturday; Sunday games unlikely

Posted by Bruce on Sat, 09/13/2008 - 15:53
Been waiting all day to hear from the Cubs about what they're plans are for the Astros series. Late this afternoon, a Cubs person said the team will not travel today, to Houston or anywhere else. That means it's unlikely the Cubs and Astros will play tomorrow, as teams almost never travel on day of game. The Cubs say they don't know what will happen. The Astros have been clinging to the hope of playing at least two games in Houston by Monday, but the effects of Hurricane Ike may prevent that. A couple days ago, I suggested the teams move the proceedings to Miller Park in Milwaukee, but the Astros wanted no part of it, even if it meant they could get all three games in and not have to worry about playing after the scheduled end of the regular season.

Rain, rain, go away

Posted by scotgreg on Fri, 09/12/2008 - 21:25
What a mess. In addition to the White Sox-Tigers game Friday night, five other games were rained out _ including the Twins’ game at Baltimore. More rain is on the way just about everywhere across the U.S., and major-league baseball is going to have to be really creative to get the regular season completed before Halloween. If the season does run long, it should actually benefit the White Sox. Paul Konerko (knee) should be back fairly soon and, who knows, maybe Carlos Quentin (fractured wrist) can return during the final week, whenever that happens to be.

Two paws up for Ozzie's latest gem

Posted by scotgreg on Thu, 09/11/2008 - 18:45
If he ever leaves baseball, Ozzie Guillen should go straight into advertising. “Every time I make up a line, people make money off of me,” Ozzie said Thursday. They sure do, especially up in Minneapolis. In 2006, Ozzie referred to the scrappy Twins as “little piranhas,” and T-shirts up in the Land of the Walleye are still being sold. The White Sox’ manager just might have topped himself on Tuesday. After the Sox dropped both ends of a double-header to Toronto, Ozzie threw out his latest gem: “We have to fight like a cat, paws up.” I almost laughed out loud, just trying to picture a cat with his/her dukes up in the air. Ozzie was wearing a “Paws Up” T-shirt on Thursday, and he was asked about where the line came from.

Why not Milwaukee?

Posted by Bruce on Thu, 09/11/2008 - 18:37
It's seems so simple. That's why Major League Baseball probably won't do it. If the Cubs and Astros cannot play in Houston in the wake of Hurricane Ike, why not Miller Park in Milwaukee? The Astros can be the "home" team, with money from the 40,000 Cubs fans going to the Astros, who seem most worried about losing three gates. On top of that, Miller Park and Minute Maid Park are both retractable domes, so the Astros will be playing on a homefield that's similar to theirs. Problem solved. Bud Selig can send a $50,000 consulting fee to yours truly. Maybe I'll print up some "Chicago's Inside Pitch" shirts with some of the dough.

Ozzie Q&A

Posted by scotgreg on Wed, 09/10/2008 - 19:34
Here are some highlights of Ozzie's interview with Sporting News magazine, which comes out Thursday. There is some rehash, but Ozzie never gets old on most topics. He was interviewed by Steve Greenberg. - Ozzie on the best manager in Chicago: "Me. Because our division is hard. Maybe all the people in the National League will be all mad, but I will trade (for a) National League Central (schedule) in a heartbeat. I will take that with my eyes closed." - On media treatment toward the Cubs: "If (Carlos) Quentin was playing for the Cubs, he'd already be MVP. If (Alexei) Ramirez was with the Cubs, he would be National League Rookie of the Year. They talk about (Cubs rookie Kosuke) Fukudome more than they talk about Ramirez."

Because you asked

Posted by Bruce on Wed, 09/10/2008 - 19:09
First things first. I asked Lou about his decision to bunt Soto last night. "We need a run to win. It's the eighth inning. I got Marmol for one, Wood for one if we score a run. I had talked to Soto about getting the bunt over if the leadoff guy got on. He just bunted a little bit too hard. I mean, I think you try to get people in scoring position late in the ballgame. We didn't bunt the next inning; there was another double play." OK, you know the scenario: Edmonds opens the eighth with a walk, and Soto, who had 2 singles previously, bunts into a DP. In the ninth. Fukudome opened with a walk. Soriano didn't bunt, but he grounded into a 5-4-3 DP. "A different way, the same result," Lou said. So there you go.

Lou lights 'em up

Posted by Bruce on Tue, 09/09/2008 - 22:57
For those of you staying up late, Lou lit into the Cubs after tonight's 4-3 loss. Here's what he said: “We’re playing like we’re waiting to get beat. You don’t have enough big of a lead in September to play ball like that. Teams that play baseball like that invariably get caught no matter how big their lead. You’ve got to stay aggressive. You’ve got to do the things that you’ve done all year. “We’re not executing. We’re making mistakes, and we’re getting beat. And I’m getting tired of watching it, to be quite honest with you. That’s not the way we played all year to get to where we are now. And I know we’re trying. But truthfully, trying isn’t good enough.