There are reports that Rangers star Josh Hamilton has had a very public relapse involving alcohol earlier this week (Hamilton battled a very serious drug addiction for a number of years that robbed him of most of his early baseball career, and, as you may know, part of getting and staying clean for folks who have an addiction problem is avoid all intoxicating substances). He was spotted drinking at a bar in Dallas a few days ago, and I’m not going to wag my finger too aggressively, knowing that we’re all flawed. But I will turn my judgmental eye on whoever was drinking with Hamilton, because we know he wasn’t drinking alone. Shame on you folks. You know what he’s battling.
- It’s no surprise – and, indeed, if he’s getting a Major League deal, it’s required – but newly-signed Cub Gerardo Concepcion will be in Spring Training this year, though he’s not expected to compete for a rotation spot (which, like, duh – he’s a teenager (his birthdate remains a minor mystery – I’ve seen January 1993, January 1994, and June 1993 – which is why you see him sometimes said to be 18, sometimes said to be 19).
- Curt Schilling, who was courted to the Red Sox by, and then played under, Theo Epstein in Boston, is a big fan of the Cubs’ new president, and believes good things are on the horizon for the Cubs. “I would feel very comfortable putting a very large chunk of money that [a World Series title] would happen in the next five to 10 years,” Schilling said Thursday on “The Waddle & Silvy Show” on ESPN 1000. “This guy is a game-changer from a baseball knowledge perspective. He is as smart, as aware as anyone I have ever been around, and I’m talking about game smart. The kind of smarts that generally have been associated with people who have been on the field. He understands the human element to this. A lot of what I learned from and about Theo I’ve taken into my company and tried to help my company grow. Theo gets it, and it’s not lost on the people who played for him. He’s the only general manager I ever played around who fit into the clubhouse. That’s a very dangerous thing for general managers, especially if they don’t fit. He was always welcome. He’s a very smart guy.”
- Alfonso Soriano’s is NOT the worst left field contract in baseball, according to CBSSports. Vernon Wells and his three years and $74 million remaining earn that distinction. Soriano’s – three and $54 million – are next.
- Jon Greenberg notes that the Cubs have – quietly – revealed pricing for the rooftop-style seats/patio section going into right field for the 2012 season, and, as expected, it’s quite high. Tickets range from $125 to $250, but they include food and drink. That part isn’t too bad, but the rub? You can’t buy solo tickets right now. Indeed, the smallest block of tickets right now is 50(!). So, if you want access to that section right now, the cheapest investment you can make is $6250. It’s obviously a very different area for a different set of folks (business outings, upscale bachelor parties, etc.), but I’ve still got zero beef with it. It doesn’t impact me in the least, and it helps generate extra revenue. Bring it on.
- The Cubs received approval yesterday from the Landmark Commission to proceed with those plans in right field, but an alderman is pushing that the Cubs should have to get City Council approval before adding more advertisements to Wrigley Field. Why? Because there are community members (and the politicians who want their support) acting as though they own Wrigley Field, and should have a right to control what ads the Cubs put up there (calling it things like a “treasure” and a “part of the community”). Well, excuse me, but forget you. You want to have a right to control what the Cubs do with Wrigley by acting like you “own” the place, but when the Cubs look to the community for support in renovating Wrigley Field, you turn a cold shoulder? Again: forget you. You can’t have it both ways: either help the Cubs fix the “treasure” up out of your own pocket, or let them do their thing with ads.
- Never end on an angry Bullet. I just got a whole bunch of Cracklin’ Oat Bran yesterday on sale. Love that stuff.