Ramon Ortiz looked like he was who we thought he was in the bottom of the first inning (though he didn’t get help from his defense (though Jeff Baker, who’s errant throw allowed two runs to score, didn’t get help from his back)). And then, he was brilliant. On the whole, he was as good as you could possibly expect from a 38-year-old dude who hasn’t pitched meaningfully in the bigs in about four years.

I’m glad the Cubs were keeping him secret and safe until juuuust the right time.

  • The Magicman

    at least we are improving our chances in getting the first pick in the draft.

  • Toosh

    The good news is the Cubs have a lot of superstar prospects only a couple of years away.

    • Coldneck

      I don’t come around her often so I assume this is sarcasm???

      • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

        Yes, it is. Self-interested-pro-tip: Come around more often. :)

    • http://twitter.com/thomaswconroy TWC

      And they’re ALL LEFT-HANDED!

    • steven

      And they all currently play for the rays..

  • Coldneck

    Aramis is FINALLY showing he’s not washed up. Lets see if it will continue for a few more months. If so, the Cubs will have a tough decision to make about whether to pick up his $16M option or extend him a $2M buyout. The one year commitment is ideal considering his age, but who knows what the Cubs plan to spend next year and the main target should be Prince.

    • http://twitter.com/thomaswconroy TWC

      Well, around here we’ve talked a lot about this year’s Cubs, but we haven’t really touched on Aramis Ramirez’s contract. It may be a good discussion to have….

      • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

        Until recently, it seemed about as useful as discussing whether Zambrano’s 2013 option was going to kick in this year (when he finishes in the top 2 in CY voting).

      • http://www.frenchrocks.net Ian Afterbirth

        What we do with Ramirez completely depends on whether we think we can contend next year.
        What are your opinions?
        Is next year something we could pull off or should we more realistically go with a 2-year plan?

        • http://twitter.com/thomaswconroy TWC

          Oh, just wait ’til NEXT year!

  • Cpat

    Soriano right now looks clueless when he is up to bat.

    • willis

      He looks clueless all the time. God forbid someone like Johnson and his awful average and terrible defense get any starts in left. Soriano is a washed up has been and is taking time from players who could actually make a difference.

      As far as Wells’ comments, hopefully they were a shot at the coaches. Because, as we all have seen, the handling of the pitching staff has been terrible this year and seems to be getting worse. From pitch selection to rotation decisions to shuffling relievers to leaving pitchers in too long to injuries. And yet, no one seems to talk about responsibility?

  • Ol’CharlieBrown

    Just saw that Aramis Ramirez has been named the National League Player of the Week.

    Its kind of ironic that he should win an award with such a fitting title. I’ve always liked Ramirez, but these days he really is just a Player of the Week. Not the All-Star and MVP candidate he used to be.

    • Hogie

      The stats have him as the best offensive 3rd baseman in the league! It doesn’t sound right, but third has become a weak offensive position and Ramy has been just crushing it lately.

  • Ron

    Just read the articles on mlb.com about Randy Wells and tonights game, Wells and Baker had some interesting quotes about pitch selection and not executing. Ace, I was wondering your thoughts if they are not saying but saying our coaches suck. Because if they are I agree with them.

    • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

      Yeah, the pitch selection quote by Wells was interesting. I’m not sure who calls the pitches for him, whether it’s Soto or Quade/Riggins. It’s most likely that Wells was just saying he should have shaken off a few pitches. I read Baker’s quote about failed execution as a (self) criticism about errors and not getting timely hits. I don’t see it as a criticism of the coaches.

  • Carrie Lymanstall

    For Pete’s sake, this is the worst blog ever. I hate it.

    • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

      Before other readers pounce, I have reason to believe Ms. Lymanstall is just kidding. Thanks for the feedback.

      • wax_eagle

        Ace, this whole Brett thing is really throwing me off. I keep seeing Brett and going Who the F is that, then I realize its just good ol Ace and I settle down…

        • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

          Just let the Duffman picture be your guide. Good thing I didn’t change that as well.

    • http://www.frenchrocks.net Ian Afterbirth

      It’s opposite day!!!!

  • JB

    You can’t sign ARAM and bring him back…weill I guess you could if you were an organization that just kind of went through the motions and didn’t care what kind of team they put on the field. Ok…Cubs…please don’t resign him…here’s why…he doesn’t help the long term future of the Cubs playing third base for the team and (see Mark Prior/kerry Wood) you can’t rely on a player that is going to miss a quarter of the season. Can’t do it…(Alou). He isn’t the long term answer and that is all the Cubs should be thinking about right now…sign fielder…bring up everyone you can right now to see what in the hell you have on your team. See who can hit and who can’t …see who can pitch and who can’t and don’t waste half of next year trying to figure that out. Then formulate a game plan of what you actually have…it appears we have a middle infield tandem…it appears we have a decent young starter…it appears we have young outfielder that can’t get on the field…because we have to make sure that Fukudome can get his at bats and I am not talking about that ass clown Tony Discenzo who runs like the wind.

    This division is going to be wide open in two years if we get Fielder…the Cardinals don’t have a GM and Larussa will be gone and Albert is going to start breaking down…Reds have Dusty…and the Brewers won’t have any one to protect Braun…the class of the division might be…gulp…the Pirates.

  • EQ

    There’s really not a better choice for next year though than ARAM. I say pick up the option and give it 1 more year. Then maybe there’ll be an adequate replacement available. Everyone’s been knocking ARAM all year, and I’ve kept saying he’d rebound and put up his usual numbers… which he’s doing. I’m also predicting right now, that the cubs will finish about 5-7 games under .500 this year.. Too much talent to be this terrible.. at some point they’ll put together a good stretch of baseball.

    • Fishin Phil

      I absolutely hate saying this, but…… I ‘d be thrilled if they finished 5 games under. How sad is that???

      • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

        I can understand, but I’d be pretty bummed if that happens. Give me playoffs, or give me death. And I mean DEAAAAATH.

    • Michigan Goat

      I agree that if this continues we do not have a better option, BUT 16M is a large chuck to pay someone who has been this average the past three seasons until these last 30 days. And as Jeff mentioned where was all this when we needed it?

  • RoughRiider

    Ramirez was injured and missed a good portion of 2009 and 2010. Perhaps he is finally getting close to being the player he was. Since there is no replacement in the organization and the lack of a better player available elsewhere, it would be prudent to keep him for at least another year. He’s only 33 so it’s not as if he’s ready for the scrap heap and addition by subtraction is not applicable in this case. He is a good player (not great). He is a good teammate and a good guy. I gave up on this year before spring training started, but it is not unconcievable that, with a few changes and better mangement, coaching and a little luck, the Cubs could be a respectable team in 2012.

    • STG3

      BullShit! Ramirez never give 100%, he is lazy and I honesty don’t think he even likes baseball. The Stats he is putting up now mean nothing, We are 17 games under .500 so there is really no pressure. Its the same thing last year when the team went on a run in the last month and a half. The Cubs are about 2 years from being legit contenders or more. So picking up Ramirez option or resigning him for less (which he won’t do) would be stupid and won’t make a difference. To quote Morgan Ensberg last night on XM “The Cubs need to take all of the money coming off and use it in the international FA market and the Draft next year”. He also said “That Cubs Management has been tricking Cubs fan into thinking the Cubs are better then they are”. And I couldn’t agree more.

      • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

        Ouch. Harsh, Morgan. Not totally off base, but harsh.

  • RY34

    Cubs won’t win a game this week and will finish the season with the worst record in baseball.