The Wife and I are headed back to our college town (Oxford, Ohio) for a little mini-vacation this weekend, mostly so we can pretend we’re not 30 for a couple days. Keg stand!

  • The Cubs/Pirates series that opens today is pretty huge for the Pirates, who’ve lost 10 of 12. If the Cubs take this series, or even split it, the Pirates’ playoff hopes probably die. They’re three games out of the second Wild Card (and behind two teams, the Dodgers and Cardinals), and are nearly tied with the Brewers(!) at this point.
  • BN’er cjdubbya (on Twitter as the same) snapped some awesome pictures at Jeff Samardzija’s final start of the year last week, including that Gatorade blast shot you see there to the right (ok, “Gatorade”). Check the series out on the BN Facebook page.
  • Gordon Wittenmyer looks at what the last long homestand for the Cubs could mean for 2013 (“long” being operative, as the Cubs do return to Wrigley for the final series of the year against the Astros). As rough as the roster looks, we still might be seeing six or seven of the regular offensive starters for next year in the current lineup. Is that a good thing or a bad thing?
  • Paul Sullivan talks to and about Starlin Castro’s big extension, and how it could change him (pointing to Carlos Zambrano’s changes after his $91 million extension back in 2007). Castro, himself, instead points to Alfonso Soriano as the example. “No, I’m pretty sure [I won’t change],” he said. “It’s the same as Soriano. Look at him. He has a lot of money, too, but he hasn’t changed.”
  • Carrie Muskat answered some questions in her “Inbox,” and noted, among other things, that the dates for the 2013 Cubs Convention will be January 18 to 20. Plan accordingly.
  • A little fluff on Josh Vitters’ path to the big leagues.
  • Today’s the deadline to enter the Cubs DVD set contest is today at 5pm CT. So check out the details, and enter! I’ll be contacting the winners over the weekend/Monday, so make sure you check your various message thingies on Monday (email if you entered by comment, DM if you entered on Twitter, and messages if you entered on Facebook).
  • The MLBullets at BCB are largely about how the Cardinals are going to make the playoffs, so you may want to avert your eyes.
  • Eric

    Please Pirates. For your sake and ours. Plunder us. AAArrrrr!

    • DocPeterWimsey

      Unfortunately for Cubs’ fans dreams of a #1 draft pick, the PIrates are not so much a team with the wheels coming off as a space wreck breaking up on atmospheric entry. However, it should not be too surprising: they were competing through “exceeds expectation” starting pitching and relief pitching with lousy offense. The pitching is worn out and the offense is still lousy. That makes them no better than the Cubs right now.

  • cjdubbya

    Hey, I know that cjdubbya guy. I hear he’s pretty swell. And funny…right Katie?

    Seriously though – that was a fun happening, especially to see it develop. Surprising but not that it’s the only CG of the year for the Cubs, and I hope that Samardzija’s around for a long, long time in a Cubs jersey, especially if that game’s a microcosm of his future.

    • cubchymyst

      That is a great picture, thanks for sharing. Love that Samardzija is standing in a superman pose and completely unaware of the Gatorade tide that is about to hit him.

  • Jarrod C.

    Brett, I’m assuming you went to Miami of Ohio? Were you in a fraternity there?

    • Brett

      I did (though it was just “Miami” to us…), and was (ATO).

      • Stinky Pete

        Did you hang with big Ben?

        • Brett

          Ha. You know, it’s funny – he was there the same time we were, and he was an education major, same as The Wife. And yet she never did see him anywhere but the football field.

          • JR

            I use to love Wally Szczerbiak! haha.

          • TWC

            And yet she never did see him anywhere but the football field.

            I suppose that’s better than running into him at a nightclub bathroom.

            • SirCub

              Ouch, too soon.

            • Brett


            • Jschroeder

              Hahaha, BOOM

      • Karen P

        One of my best friends if from Cleveland, and I really only know of Miami from her. So many stereotypes running through my mind right now. AND YOU SEEM SO NORMAL.

        • Brett

          Let me help you with that.

          All of the stereotypes are true.

  • Cizzle

    Nice to see another Miami boy make it big. Though I’m surprised you’re not popping your collar in your pic…

  • Spencer

    You gonna go to the convention again this year?

    • Brett

      That’s the plan. When I know for sure (hopefully by next month), I’ll blast it loudly so that if folks are going to be going, perhaps we can plan a meet-up.

  • Tim

    Hey brett, do you know when tickets for the convetion go on sale?

    • Brett

      I don’t, but last year they went on sale the second week of November.

  • Tim


  • JR

    Can anyone fill me in on ballpark of what it costs to go to Cubs Convetion? I would love to go to that..

    • Brett

      Last year it was, I believe, $60 for a weekend pass (which gets you into everything, plus a little bit of swag). But they had a package deal where you could get a couple nights in the hotel, tickets to a game, and two passes for a decent rate. I expect they’ll do that again (at least I hope so).

      • TWC

        I want to make a crack about $60 being an awful lot for a “little bit of shwag”, but I think I’ve used up my day’s quota of inappropriate comments.

        • Brett

          You’ve still got a little space. The Big Ben one cost you six, but you’re up to a daily limit of 10.

          • DarthHater

            Hey, we should set up a market for trading inappropriate comment credits!

            • SirCub

              Cap and trade, I like it.

        • A.J.

          Ha! Awesomesauce!

  • Convention Jason

    Hey Brett, I am reading/hearing chatter of the Convention NOT being at the Hilton this year. The people at the Hilton won’t give away any details but are hinting that it may not be there. We’ve stayed at the hotel for many years and have always made our reservations well before now. Also, I was listening to ESPN1000 on 9/5/12 around 10pm and Bruce Levine said changes are coming to the Convention and details would be announced soon. Haven’t heard anything since. I know if you hear anything, you’ll scream. I’ll be waiting.

    • Brett

      Oh my. Good to hear, Jason. I’ll pound the pavement a bit.

  • Convention Jason

    News today from Chicago Sun-Times that Convention moving to Sheraton Chicago Hotel and Towers.

    • Brett

      Indeed. Will have a write-up soon – hope you’ll still make the trip. Now I have to figure out where folks can meet-up.