I’m still stewing about Tony La Russa’s crap from last night.
- As has been in the works for some time, interleague rivalry series – like the Cubs and White Sox, for example – will be reduced to a four game set (two each, home and home) starting in 2013, except for the years in which the teams’ respective divisions are already playing each other in interleague play. In those years, the series will be six games. What will become of the BP Cup? I’m sure it sticks around. I like the six game series, but I know it’s not everyone’s cup of tea. I’m just glad it will be 67% preserved in most years.
- Bryan LaHair on why he’s here in the US this year, rather than Japan (where, you’ll recall, he almost went), from Bruce Levine: “I was on my way to play in Japan this year. Theo basically eliminated me going to Japan by his conviction that I had a place in their plans …. My agent and I decided that when we talked to Theo if there was any doubt in his mind or any hesitation that I would be a part of it we were going to take an offer from Japan. [Theo] told us he was excited about me getting an opportunity and showing I could play for the Cubs every day so we were convinced.” Does that include trading LaHair, if the right deal came up after he’d established himself with the Cubs? I’m thinking yes, that would be OK.
- LaHair and Starlin Castro were very gracious about their appearances in the All-Star Game last night, as you’d expect them to be. But how could they not be a little annoyed that La Russa held them out so long with no legitimate excuse? Good on them for saying all the right things. There are a lot of nice thoughts and memories from the duo in that article.
- Doug Padilla offers 10 things we learned about the Cubs in the first half.
- BN’er Spriggs updates us on Dillon Maples’ progress in Arizona, and it sounds like the Cubs’ most promising young pitcher could finally get started this year as soon as next week. Although hopes are high for the kid in the long term, you *must* keep your expectations in check for the 2012 season. It’ll be his first professional experience, and he’s overcoming some injury issues (I know, you’re flashing on Hayden Simpson).
- MLBullets at BCB look at a variety of things, including the Indians putting reliever Will Hagadone on the disqualified list after he hurt his hand in anger following a crappy outing. Players have done that kind of thing for years, and teams have just kind of accepted it as a cost of doing business. The Indians may be bucking that trend, and I’m sure the union will give them a fight.