Today, the Chicago Cubs go for their first three-game winning streak of the season. They’ve had nine previous cracks at it this year, and have lost all nine. This is the longest the Cubs have gone into a season without winning three in a row since 1966 (which was just five games longer). Before that, there wasn’t a longer stretch. So this is already, like, historically bad.
- Randy Wells suggested yesterday something I’ve been speculating about for a month – he hasn’t been totally healthy since coming back from a forearm injury that cost him two months at the start of the year. “It has been a process trying to get back where I want be. I’ve been battling aches and pains and trying to get healthy. I’m just happy to get the ball on the ground a lot more than I have in recent starts and get the team through six or more innings.”
- Buster Olney says Reed Johnson should be one of the most sought-after pieces at the trade deadline, given his production and dirt-cheap contract. But then he steps on our grapes by noting that teams are unwilling to give up more than a C+ prospect for him (and guys like him), asking “is it worth it?”
- The Cubs are sticking to their Sean-Marshall-is-not-available story. Shrug.
- Can someone give me a good reason why the Cubs should not claim lefty Jo-Jo Reyes? Reyes, 26, was DFA’d by the Blue Jays yesterday after putting up a 5.40 ERA over 20 starts this year (which, you’ll note, would be a vast improvement over the Cubs’ back-end of the rotation when you do the normal AL/NL adjustment). Once a prospect with a bright future in the Braves’ organization, Reyes got a shot with the Blue Jays and failed. He still has a mid-90s fastball and is young enough to turn it around. He’s making just $439K this year. Again, why would the Cubs not put in a claim?
- Watch out, Mike Quade, Carlos Zambrano has your back: “[Quade] makes mistakes like everybody else, you know,” Zambrano said. “At the end of the day, all [he’s doing] is just trying to win. Sometimes it doesn’t go the way he wants, but you know he tries to win. For me he’s the same guy … things haven’t gone the way he expects.”
- Jon Greenberg shreds the Cubs for the crappy attendance at Wrigley Field and the organization’s weak efforts to lure fans with giveaways. He offers some joke giveaway ideas before concluding on a serious (and somber) note: “Now that we’ve had our fun, here are two last ideas to boost attendance and bolster enthusiasm. These are really wacky, so suspend your disbelief in advance. Lower ticket prices to normal levels, and spend more money to bring in, you know, good baseball players. Guys who can play defense and pitch and look interested half the time.”
- Attendance problems don’t just hurt the organization. Think about the dude bringing you your (sixth) beer: A Wrigley Beer Man’s Notes. Pro-tip: treat everyone like an actual human being, even if he’s “just” the guy selling you beer. Do so especially this year. Also – read that Tumblr. Dude can write.