The Seeker

A Meta-Cognitive Journal About Writing… Plus Other Stuff

Winning Season

with 2 comments

The Cubs are 1-6, and I’m already calling this a winning season—the reason being that we’re on the right path for the franchise to fire Joe Maddon, and I’m all in favor of that for the Cubs to move forward.  Very little has changed since I last railed on the Cubs, and it’s easy to see at this point that that which didn’t work last season is not only going to not work this season, but is going to be a resounding failure.

Still fits.

Let’s talk tactics.  The most damning aspect here is these dolts are still without an everyday leadoff hitter.  What we have is leadoff platoon with a likely candidate to be an everyday leadoff guy–Albert Almora.  He hit .286 last year over 152 games.  So, rather idiotically, the Cubs alternate him with a 37-yr old who should be little more than trade bait at this point.  But instead, Joe Maddon keeps getting to play mad scientist and switch lineups on the daily, and he keeps around a guy that did real well for him during the World Series run in ’16.  How long until he pulls the Rizzo-at-leadoff stunt?  Gimmicks don’t win titles, Joe.  They might win individual games at critical points in the season and pull you out of slumps, but that’s about it.

This is not to say that Almora is the solution.  I don’t know that he is.  The real solution is having an everyday leadoff hitter, which the Northsiders haven’t had since Dexter Fowler took I-55 to St. Louis two years ago.  Somehow Joe has Theo Epstein convinced that the platoon approach is going to work.  But I’m not sure what pressure is on the organization to address the most critical issues that face the team.  The Cubs ran for 108 years on the fumes of nostalgia, and the games are still going to be sold out on the daily.

There are greater concerns than leadoff hitter, though.  There are matters of the integrity of the franchise, and that’s where the baseball gods are again throwing down lightning bolts.  How far will they allow the Cubs to go now that they are inclined to shelter domestic abusers?  The situation is so profound in the #metoo era that it’s perfectly reasonable to think that Larry Baer’s confrontation with his wife was actually a public audition for a position in the Cubs’ front office.

The racist and Islamophobic communications of Tom Ricketts also figure into how I’m viewing the Cubs these days.  Another Ricketts is overseeing fundraising for the re-election of the current PO(tu)S, and I’m left wondering how long a blue-collar city in a blue state will tolerate these right-wing and extreme positions.  I’m already tired of the bullshit, but I don’t speak for the city.  At what point do all these concerns overpower the strength of the nostalgia that has gripped generations of Cubs fans and result in a revolt that forces changes in how the organization is run?

You might be asking, too, why I’m even concerned about it.  That’s a good question.  I have a dual-citizenship in baseball, and my “other” team is 7-1 and scored thirteen runs last night against the tail-chasing Cubs.  All of this is telling me I need to spend my baseball money this summer north of the border rather than on the north side.

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Written by seeker70

April 6, 2019 at 10:39 am

Posted in Uncategorized

2 Responses

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  1. As far as the politics angle goes, having the new Cubs channel run by / controlled by Sinclair is going to be a real test. It could be good for distribution, and many (if not most) Cubs fans will likely be willing to tune in for just the Cubs broadcast, but it’s still more than a bit galling.
    You’re not wrong about leadoff hitter, but until the bullpen tire fire is put out, no aspect of hitting is going to help.

    Adam D. Vollmers

    April 6, 2019 at 12:13 pm

    • Thanks for chiming in, Adam. I merely covered what I find most annoying about Maddon at this point; regardless of what that is, many things under his purvey are lacking this early in the season. I don’t know why Joe is so bent on platooning. I could write a whole other post about the pitching staff. As for Sinclair, I doubt at this point that I will subscribe. Not only are they too radical and conniving right-wing (is that a redundancy?), but I enjoy listening to games on the radio. Besides, there will still be a million bars in the Chicagoland area that will all being showing whatever product the Cubs put up. My bottom line is fire Joe, get leadoff hitter, and stick to an everyday lineup.

      seeker70

      April 7, 2019 at 7:48 pm


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