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starlin castro sports illustratedChicago Cubs shortstop Starlin Castro turns 23 today. When I was 23, I was still in the “schooling” phase of my life. The average rookie in MLB is 24 years old. Starlin Castro has been in the big leagues for three years.

  • Today’s the day for you to hold your breath a bit, if you’re inclined to do so: Scott Baker will have his elbow examined by the team orthopedist so that the next steps in his recovery from Tommy John surgery can be planned. Baker returned to live action a week ago today, but, after feeling soreness the following day, was shut down. Any substantial delay in his rehab program will completely neuter the possibility – however remote it is at this point – that he could pitch a few great months for the Cubs and become a flippable asset at the deadline (which is not to say that’s the only good outcome for him, but it would be nice for the Cubs to have that option). I am not optimistic, even as Baker says he’s feeling better after a combination of treatment and medication this week. My guess is, if the examination yields good news, we’ll hear about it today. If it’s bad news, there will be no rush, and options will have to be discussed. What we know is: Baker felt soreness, got an MRI, the Cubs declined to elaborate on the MRI results, and the Cubs instead paged the doctor to come down and evaluate Baker in person. You can see why I’m not optimistic.
  • Dave Sappelt is a confident man, and he’s happy to have made the big club. I really like the possibility of production out of center field and right field platoons involving Sappelt, David DeJesus, Nate Schierholtz, and Scott Hairston, especially if Dale Sveum really commits to it. In that plan, the Cubs could see league-average production from those positions – maybe even a touch better – for dirt cheap.
  • Casey Coleman, on the other hand, is unhappy not to have made the big club. “It’s a tough one to swallow,” Coleman told Jesse Rogers. “They have a plan, they have guys here with no options that have pitched well in the big leagues. You came in here throwing no runs, no walks and felt like you did everything you could, perfect. Knowing there are some other teams out there you could have made …. I’m not going to lie, it’s frustrating when you do put up those numbers and nothing happens. You feel like you just didn’t get the opportunity from the get-go.” Coleman, however well he pitched, was behind the 8-ball, being a guy on a minor league deal whom the Cubs could simply send to Iowa if they wanted. When needs emerge in the bullpen later this year – and they will – Coleman seems as good a bet as anyone to come up to the big club, assuming he’s continued pitching well in relief at Iowa.
  • A great, great write-up on Javier Baez from Patrick Mooney, complete with anecdotes and quotes from the Cubs development staff. Although he’s still a ways off from the bigs, Jason McLeod and Brandon Hyde marvel at how far he’s come in a year, in terms of maturing as a baseball player.
  • David Haugh is the latest Chicago columnist to write extensively about the Chicago Cubs moving out of Wrigley Field, and into a new stadium somewhere like Rosemont. Again, any effort to legitimize the “threat to move” is appreciated, as it has the potential to spur a deal for the Cubs to remain at Wrigley Field. Haugh made certain to underscore the April 1 deadline – the date by which the Ricketts Family has said it needs to have a deal in place in order to get started on renovations after the 2013 season – and remind folks that these negotiations could change dramatically if that date comes and passes without a deal. While I’ve never thought the “threat to move” could be regarded as credibly as it would need to be in order to make a difference, I think the threat becomes just a touch more believable after a deadline – however artificial – passes. That’s one week away.
  • rich

    I think the aggroant whigleyville people should get off their high horse and shut the hell up . Without wrigley field that area would not be worth what it is . To the people who moved there in the last few years you knew what you were getting into so shut your damn pieholes and be greatful that you live in an area like that !

    • Die hard

      Not so sure because a 5 star hotel with parking would stabilize the neighborhood and provide a steadier revenue stream during off season

    • Kevin

      Other than Rosemont what other options do the Cubs have to relocate?

      • CubFan Paul

        The spokesman for the Cubs said there are “other” cities that have expressed interest in the Cubs, so they have options/LEVERAGE approaching April 1st.

        I dare Emanuel to call the Tom Ricketts’ bluff.

      • Rcleven

        The Cubs have talked with DuPage County for one.
        Once it becomes public that Cubs will listen to offers on a new location there will be all kinds of offers. Hoffman Est. has the Sears property for one. I am sure many community’s would set up TIF’s just to attract three million visitors a year.

      • Die hard

        Don’t know but isn’t there a casino in Rosemont? See the game day or night and finish the fun at the casino… Also don’t know if this is considered yet but a Wal- Mart at Clark and Addison would stabilize neighborhood by being family friendly

        • aCubsFan

          No casino in Rosement. It is down up River Road in DesPlaines.

          • aCubsFan

            oops…It’s north of Rosemont on River Road in DesPlaines.

    • Nick

      Rich,

      I sold a condo about 1/2 mile from Wrigley and bought another about 1/2 block from the field in the last year. I really don’t think that it is anybody in the neighborhood (other than the rooftop owners) is holding this up. If it really is the neighborhood, I really don’t think the “demands” by the area are unreasonable.

      Like you said, we knew what we were getting into when we bought in the area (including extra police and parking restrictions for night games). I don’t think it is unreasonable to ask for the same night game protections that are currently in place be extended when the cubs get additional night games.

      Trust me, as a 15 year plus resident and 10 year season ticket holder, I want to see this deal done, but I am sick and tired of people pulling out the “you knew what you were getting into when you moved there” card. The EXACT same thing could be said about Ricketts – he knew about the restrictions when he bought the cubs – he shouldn’t be able to just change the rules because he doesn’t like them.

      All that said, let’s get a deal done and go Cubs.

      • CubFan Paul

        “I don’t think it is unreasonable to ask for the same night game protections that are currently in place be extended when the cubs get additional night games”

        ..ummm, of course the night game protections that are currently in place would apply to any new night games. That’s not the issue

        The (real) issues are: Tunney wants the Cubs to pay for the RedLine, donate (MORE) to his charity, and an extension of the (HORRIBLE) rooftop deal that still has 11 years on it.

        • aCubsFan

          There is an article in the Chicago Tribune Business section today the print edition has it titled “Squeeze play on Wrigley rooftops?” and the online edition is titled “Wrigley rooftop owners say Cubs trying to squeeze them out”

          It’s an excellent read.

          It states Ricketts offered to buy a 50% stake in 5 of the rooftops, but their efforts were rebuffed. I got the impression that George Loukas, who owns 3 rooftops, is the one who is holding up any deal.

          Loukas feels that the Cubs want to put up signage in the bleachers which will cause the rooftops to become extinct, then the Cubs would buy the rooftops at a reduced price and than move the signage to the rooftops and reopen the rooftops.

          Part of the problem between the Cubs and rooftops relationship is that in 2011 the rooftop owners sold tickets at a discount.

        • Nick

          “Of course” the current protections would be extended. Do you a source that has said that part is a done deal? I haven’t seen it. My main point is that I don’t think the majority of the neighborhood is the one holding this up and what the majority of the neighborhood wants is reasonable. Also, the same tired arguement that people moved there knowing these things is true, but it is also true for the Ricketts family.

  • walterj

    Feel bad for Coleman . Hopefully he gets called up during the season and sticks with the club .

  • Die hard

    The move to Rosemont could be the best for all if Ricketts could sell site to hotel developer and take selected portions of Wrigley like scoreboard, ivy covered wall etc to Rosemont and start a new 100 yr tradition

    • CubFan Paul

      Agreed. He’s got $500M to invest and Tunney and The Mayor act like that’s not important leverage.

      Ricketts better not blink first because Tunney & The Mayor don’t have a $500M bargaining chip.

      • Kevin

        Rickets is a smart businessman and, if he blinks first, he’s not overly concerned with a counteroffer from the mayor.

      • Die hard

        Except if Rosemont depends on City services which could be affected if Mayor miffed… Where does Rosemont drinking water come from and where does its sewage go to?

        • Kevin

          The sewage goes directly to City Hall!

        • aCubsFan

          In short Rosemont gets their water from the city of Chicago. It is based on a 1949 agreement between Chicago and Rosement to allow a pipeline to be allowed to run through Rosemont to feed water to O’Hare airport. I believe waste goes to the DesPlaines Reclamation facility

          • Die hard

            So Mayor has leverage as to water ? Big bargaining hold on Rosemont

  • Die hard

    If Red Sox take Soriano Cubs could throw in Coleman as a deal sweetener

    • AB

      If a team really, really, really wanted Coleman, they probably would have picked him up at the end of the season for free when the Cubs de-Rostered him from the 40-man and he passed through waivers.

      • DocPeterWimsey

        You used 3 more “really”‘s than necessary! Basically, it would only be a sweetener for the Sox if the got to make Coleman pitch for the Yanks, Rays or Jays.

        • Rebuilding

          ^LOL. I like that Coleman looked good out of the pen this spring, but I’m not sure what he expected. He’s been absolutely horrible in the bugs and is transitioning to a new role. I hope it works out

  • RoughRiider

    I’m guessing that the MRIs were inconclusive. THe doctor doesn’t need to go to Arizona to look at them. Also if it was preceived to be anything serious Baker would have been on the next plane to Chicago. More likely that Baker is being caucious.

    Coleman will be back.

  • BubblesHargrave

    Get out of WRIGLEYVILLE! Nostalgia has harmed the game of baseball, and it is harming the Cubs. I like Wrigley field, but I don’t understand the attachment people have to a place where such winless futility has occurred for so long.

  • BubblesHargrave

    Also, yes older fans may not like a move, but how long will they be around anyways? They may like it more if it some way helps with winning. Like more night games, etc. I think this whole situation is and will show Rickett’s true worth as an owner.

    • Timothy Scarbrough

      Did you really just make the argument that we shouldn’t care what old people think, because they are going to die anyway? Like, really?

      • Timothy Scarbrough

        “Sorry Grams, it doesn’t matter where you want to have Thanksgiving, because you know, you might die by then.”

    • Tsb

      When I have a heart attack while driving my car, I hope you and your family are crossing the street right in front of me.

      • DarthHater

        I saw a young guy by the side of the road who had been hit by a car in a remote area. He needed emergency assistance. I considered calling 911 and stopping to help, but I don’t have that much time left before I die myself and I still have a lot of things to do, so I just drove on. :-P

  • Kevin

    Someone suggested the Cubs move to the former meig’s field location. If the city offered the land could Reinsdorf block the move because its too close to the White Sox?

    • DocPeterWimsey

      It would be a non-issue. For one thing, the that island nowhere near wide enough, so unless you wanted Polo Grounds On Steroids, you couldn’t really fit in a ballpark.

      Another huge problem is that there is only one narrow way onto the island (the way that you take to Adler), and mass transit does not get people closer to the museum campus than Roosevelt St. (I’d be extra glad to no longer be at the Field Museum if I had to get home against that condensation of traffic!) And, of course, playing there would be horrible: as someone who biked up and down that stretch for years, I can attest to how often it was 5˚ colder along that stretch than it was just 5-6 blocks away from the lake.

      • aCubsFan

        Plus I don’t believe the city would give up the nature trails they spent millions on to give it to the Cubs if they could.

  • Spoda17

    I admire Coleman’s honesty. Sometimes hearing the “company-line” gets old. If it were me, I’d be pissed too. Actually, Coleman has always been mild and meek, I like that the spoke up and said he was pissed.

    I am so sick of the stadium soap opera. I don’t live in Chicago, but I do try to get back there once a year or so, and I do go to Wrigley when I go, but enough is enough. I hate that the Mayor and this Tunnie dude are keeping the fans hostage. Ricketts is just trying to run a business and actually make a better experience for fans, and players… EFF the city.

    • BluBlud

      I agree about Coleman. I said the same about Wells last year. I would rather have my player upset that he did make the team then hold it in and not show it. I think every player that got cut should be upset. From Coleman to all the way to Soler and Baez. While we knew certain players were never going to make the team, every player should always expect to make the team no matter the circumstances, and they should be upset if they don’t.

    • DocPeterWimsey

      What makes you think that Coleman is mild and meek? How much we hear from players depends heavily on how interesting they are (for good or ill) to the media.

      At any rate, Coleman really has no rational basis for being upset. (And, yes, I understand that this is not entirely rational.) He has to know that most teams do not use spring training numbers when making roster decisions anymore and that he’s long since demonstrated that MLB hitters find him very hittable. He might have a future as a LOOGY: but, frankly, I think that most lefties are going to hit him well, too.

      • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

        I think Coleman would really struggle as a LOOGY …
        :)

        • DocPeterWimsey

          d’oh! Brain cramp….. I was trying to find something charitable to say about him and I guess that the first few words of the “he’s like Tom Glavine [but without the talent and pitching right handed]” lines got lodged in my head…..

          Mea culpa.

          (And even if he was a lefty, I think that he’d probably struggle at that!)

          • DocPeterWimsey

            I guess that the obvious lesson is, don’t try to be nice! :-)

  • BluBlud

    I love old school baseball as much as anybody. I loved when players didn’t change teams and when you wanted to beat the other team with your players, not sign their players. But this attachment to Wrigley is just mind boggling to me. I just simply don’t understand it. I kind of just wish the whole place would burn to the ground or a tornado would come through and wipe it out so we no longer have to have this conversation. It’s a dump. There is nothing historic about the place. No championship, no signs of wi ning anything. We are not the Yankees, the Cardinals, the Lakers, the Celtics, the Packers, UCLA or Kentucky basketball, Alabama football or any other sports team or program with a history of winning in a particular place. Wrigley has meant nothing but bad luck and a history of losing for the Cubs. We should run as far away from as fast as we can.

    • CubbiesOHCubbies

      Ironic you bring up winning teams and their attachments to stadiums. We are not the Yankees, Cardinals, Celtics or lakers. ALL of those teams had NO ISSUES leaving their stadiums, rich with history, and championships, for brand new, state of the art, money making stadiums. AND they still draw packed houses. I don’t see Yankee fans pissing and moaning when the old stadium got replaced. Cardinal fans LOVE the new Busch Stadium. The cubs have too many fans that would rather lose with tradition than win in a new stadium in the suburbs.

      • caryatid62

        The Yankees are a bad example. They’ve had trouble selling tickets at their new stadium after the first year, especially the priciest seats.

    • Tommy

      BluBlud – I have very fond memories of my first MLB experiences being at Wrigley with my Dad, teaching me to fill out scorecards, eating hot dogs and peanuts, getting autographs by the dugouts, and watching the Cubs with my glove at the ready for any possible foul ball that might come my way. We’d go to at least a handful of games every year, and watch the rest of the games on WGN. I grew up loving to play and watch baseball because it was the one things that my Dad and I shared together. Sure, we watched football and a little bit of basketball on occasion, but we never went to Soldier field, and the NBA growing up just wasn’t a thriving league at the time, so that left us with 162 glorious games of Chicago Cub baseball.

      My Dad died last year, and those are some of the fondest memories of him for me. I guess I am telling you this to explain to you my personal attachment to Wrigley, and I’m guessing I’m not alone in these sentiments. Dad died at 88, and Wrigley was part of his past, as well as mine, so one of the few things that lives on in this age of new things is Wrigley field. Yeah, we could move on from Wrigley and I’d survive, but my nostalgic visits and sharing my experiences that I had with Dad with my own son (live and in person) would be gone. Personally, I’d like to think that’s one thing he could continue to do when he has children of his own someday.

      And that’s why Wrigley is important to me.

      • Tom A.

        Good story !

        It may me think of the dialogue spoken by James Earl Jones from the movie Field of Dreams.

        “The one constant through all the years Ray, has been baseball. America has rolled by like an army of steamrollers. It’s been erased like a blackboard, rebuilt and erased again. But baseball has marked the time. This field, this game, is a part of our past, Ray. It reminds us of all that once was good, and that could be again.”

      • BluBlud

        I understand memories. When I was a kid, my dad used to take me to the store in the neighborhood, and get me, what I thought at the time, was the biggest pickles in the world. My godfather owned that store, and my father worked for his father as boy. I used to spend days and days in that store growing up. Guess where that store is now? It’s somebody’s back yard. Times change, things changes, but memories never fade if they mean enough to you. I grew up watching Derek Jeter, Jorge Posada, Mo and o lot of other Yankees come up through the minors with my grandmother. She passed away in 2011. I never forget her taking me to those games. That stadium the old Yankees team played in is still standing, but our minor league team(Now run by the Marlins) has a brand new stadium. Once of the niciest in all of the minor leagues.

        I am not against renovating Wrigley. If they do, I’m fine with it. I’m just against the Alderman, the Mayor, the Rooftops and a bunch of neighborhood clowns telling Ricketts how to run his business. If leaving Wrigley gives him freedom, then he needs to do it. If I’m him though, I’m not investing one penny into Wrigley until you give me EVERYTHING, and I mean EVERYTHING, I ask for. There would be no other options. It would be that, or I move. It’s really that simple to me. Ricketts would never suggest that as it would be a PR disaster, but I would if I were him.

        Your attachment with your dad should be to the Cubs, not to the stadium. If they are attached to the stadium, those memories are going to fade just because the stadium is gone. I’m sure you’ll take all those memories to the grave with you, as I’m sure I’ll take my memories of my grandmother to the grave with me someday. I’m sure there are stories like yours and mines that existed in every stadium that has ever been moved out of in the world. When new stadiums open, new stories are wrote. That’s life cycle.

        • BluBlud

          I meant those memories aren’t going to fade just cause the stadium is gone.

    • Tom A.

      But, it does present memories (good memories) for many people !

      There are two major league ball parks that we all think of in a special way — Wrigley Field and Fenway Park.

      I truthfully want to be there in my seats in remodeled Wrigley Field to see the Cubs win a World Series. I really don’t care if there are advertising signs stopping the view of those ugly rooftop seating areas, I really don’t care if there are 30 or 40 bars in walking distance of the ball park and I really don’t care if Mr. Tunney stays in politics or enjoys making money in his restaurants. Those last three things are like gnats or bugs or other parasites that must be dealt with and / or ignored. But, a World Series win in Wrigley Field — that would be priceless !!!

      • BluBlud

        There are two Major league parks I think of when I think of old and trashy, Wrigley Field and Fenway Park. I could really careless if Wrigley is renovated or not, and I could really careless if the Cubs move or not. I care about the Cubs. I don’t care where they play, when they play or who they play, I’ll be pulling for them. I don’t think the owner of the Cubs have a right to ask the goverment for money to run his business and I don’t think the Government or “the people” have a right to tell him how to run his business. I have no attachment to anything else. If Ricketts wants to stay in Wrigley, I support it. If he wants to move out, I support it. If he wants to move the team to Africa, I support it. You know why? Cause it’s his team, he owns it and he can do whatever he wants with it. I wish somebody would try to tell me what to do with my house, My land or my property.

  • BubblesHargrave

    Well said BluBlud! Wrigley Field is the pure embodiment of the term “lovable loser.”

  • cubzforlife

    We forget about the sixty five year old season ticket holder shelling out 100,000 a year for his four seats behind the dugout. And there are alot of guys just like him. These folks won’t be going to Rosemont and those seats won’t sell for that kind of money. Wrigley Field is a gold mine.

    • Rich H

      Yep and the luxury suites will not work. Wait oh never mind we all know that they are always filled up even in Pittsburgh.

      • Kevin

        We can learn a lot from Pittsburgh, one of the best parks in baseball.

  • BubblesHargrave

    A gold mine for the Rickett’s bank account. So if they’re just looking to benefit themselves, you’re right, they should stay.

    • Die hard

      Might be cheaper to move and let lawsuits start than trying to negotiate into an inside straight

      • Kevin

        Lawsuits?

  • mditka

    wrigley is NOT the reason the cubs have been losers over the years – has nothing to do with it! its the players, coaches & front office. i get so sick of that bs excuse to move! the reason the owners want to rehab wrigley & stay there is why wouldnt they? its a totally great place to go for a game. its a great neighborhood. its steps from the red line & numerous bus lines. it draws tons of spectators each yr & even more just to come to the area & hang out. its a gold mine – thats why they want to rehab & stay. who wants some brutally stale new stadium in rosemont or any other burb? how many outsiders will want to go there & hang out for the weekend? i know you suburbanites that say its a horrible place to get to, etc but the bottom line is if you live in the city its a breeze to get to & a blast during your time there. i lived across the street from 89 till 2001. i will say it gets old living there if you outgrow the party atmosphere but everyone moving in there or living there knows what they are getting into after the first season and can make their choice going forward. look at other MLB teams looking at new stadiums – they WANT to move back in the cities not out of them. that is where the fun is & it draws visitors from outside of the area. not gonna change. like any negotiation – both sides push as hard as they can to get everything they can for their side & eventually the compromise works out. just let it go & know the outcome – cubs will get most everything they want – and they will get more over time. they will spend loads of cash to make wrigley a palace for fans & players – you can see it from the plans. quit crying about it.

    • DarthHater

      Few if any people are silly enough to try to blame Wrigley for all of the Cubs’ problems over the years. But a lot of people with a lot more direct connection to Wrigley and the Cubs than simply having lived in the neighborhood consider a number of Wrigley issues to be among the reasons for the Cubs’ prolonged difficulties. Flatly stating that the Wrigley “has nothing to do with it” is just as silly as making Wrigley the sole cause.

    • Kevin

      “cubs will get most everything they want – and they will get more over time”

      Do you really think the Cubs will get anything more than is offered now? If the Cubs decide to stay at Wrigley they must get everything they want up front. Just think how much leverage they lose after spending $500.

    • Die hard

      Wrigley is a factor in that for a qtr century Cubs knew had golden goose of a set up and would draw fans no matter what the product and so not as much was spent on player development as could have been….to Ricketts credit he’s trying to reverse this trend but the convergence of the ancient stadium and emergence of the Brewers as a good team with their great stadium is a lot to overcome at the same time…. For a long time many Wisconsites were Cub fans…. Not so much anymore

      • aCubsFan

        But that has been a fallacy. Wrigley Field and the Cubs didn’t draw no matter how poorly the team played. It wasn’t until 1982 when the Tribune Company brought in Harry Carey as the broadcaster and then the 1984 and the 1989 Cubs playoff runs did attendance begin to constantly reach and exceed 2 million. Then in the 1990s you had personalities like Sandberg and Sosa that helped drive attendance. Then you had Dusty Baker, Lou Pinella and the 2003, 2007 and 2008 playoff runs.

        • DarthHater

          Yea, another guy with a “pro-reality agenda” touting the virtues of taking all the relevant facts into account. Yadda yadda yadda. ;-)

          • aCubsFan

            Isn’t that how objective business decisions are supposed to be made — with facts? Emotional decisions are made, but typically end up leading to failure.

            All one has to do is look at the decisions made by the Tribune Company with respect to Sariano and others they paid big bucks to just so they could drive up the value of the club if they had won — or even the nonsensical rooftop deal. Now the Ricketts and Cubs are paying for these emotional shortsighted decisions.

      • hansman1982

        Not sure how Wrigley has ever been a fantastic draw for fans.

        From 1946 to 1983 Wrigley was a terrible draw. According to here: http://www.baseball-almanac.com/teams/cubsatte.shtml

        The Cubs were on a downward spiral until 1984 with attendance peaking at a running total of 8 million below average. During this time the only years that the Cubs were at or above league average were 1946-1948, 1950, 1952, 1969-1972.

        Starting in 1984, the Cubs reversed this trend and are now 500,000-1,000,000 fans over the running average since 1946.

        I would say that the Cubs nationwide fan base is more attributable to WGN than it is Wrigley. I think more fans come to Wrigley because of WGN (both TV and radio) making them a fan.

        • http://thecubcontrarian.blogspot.com Kyle

          I think WGN and good marketing made Wrigley an inextricable part of the brand that helps drive Cubs attendance, and could have done the same with a lot of parks. But it’s too late.

          • hansman1982

            Meh, I think right now would be an amazing time to build a new park. The 1-2 year bump in attendance would give us an additional “cushion” year should the rebuild take a little longer to get us to the promised land but if the Cubs start regularly making the playoffs and/or contending in the new stadium, it won’t take long for people to start saying:

            “Wrigley, wha?”

            • Edwin

              Fair point. But how long will it take before the Cubs start making the playoffs regulary? It could easily be 2016/2017 before the Cubs are able to produce a playoff team. How quick will the “new stadium” vibe wear off, and if the Cubs have down seasons, will they still come to the new stadium like they currently do with Wrigley?

              I think if the Cubs build a new stadium and are able to stay either in the current spot, or move somewhere else but are still able to keep a nice downtownish location, they’ll be fine in the long run.

              I think if the Cubs build a new stadium in the Suburbs, they’ll still be a good draw, but I worry about attendance in the long run, during down seasons. Maybe they can make it up the lost revenue by way of less taxes and more ad revenue, but there is still a risk that the Cubs Brand might take a hit.

          • hansman1982

            Also, I would really love it if the Cubs could pioneer some sort of online network free from the blackout rules.

            But they need to keep the WGN Radio commitment (still my favorite way to follow a Cubs game)

    • Toby

      I’ve read plenty of comments over the years from former Cub players that have said the mainly day schedule is extremely difficult to deal with, going from mainly night games to mainly daytime ones. They said it is easier to adjust for visiting teams to adjust to because of the fact it’s never more than 3, maybe 4 games they have to deal with, but constant differences in the schedule drain players over the course of a season. I’m tired of hearing fans with an agenda act like it isn’t a factor, unless you’ve actually played for the Cu bs and can say otherwise.

      Give the team whatever it needs to compete with other clubs and you’ll see a difference at the end of the season.

    • George

      Dude, your in denial !! The morning games are the problem. They’ve asked current & former players & it seems to be a common thesis. Kerry wood was asked a year ago what he thought the reason was & he came out & said he thought it was night games. Hey , if your a player getting payed millions , yea you can get used to going on the road playing night games & coming back & throwing your clock way off thrown into playing games at noon,1,2 but don’t expect them to play well rested including the young single partying types off players. Name me another team whom has city ordinance restrictions on night games like the cubs do? The only way they will win a World Series & have a chance to win is when you relax the night ordinance bans on night games. And I don’t think the city ever will, hence a move to the suburbs might & probobly will be the answer with a reasonable schedule wit the majority off there home games played around the same time in the night,& stop this 4:30,2:001:20,12:15 ,3:14,7:00,9:00 BS.

      • George

        I meant to say Kerry wood said , & I feel the same way the problem is with all the day games.

  • Tommy

    Well, looking back on the Sean Marshall trade, it looks like we got:
    1. Travis Wood (starter)
    2. Dave Sappelt (major league player now)
    3. Ronald Torreyes (Luke’s #35 ranked prospect in the Cub’s farm system: see here: http://www.bleachernation.com/2013/03/05/the-bleacher-nation-top-40-chicago-cubs-prospects-for-2013-lets-start-with-40-to-31/)

    Not too shabby thus far, and hopefully looks better as more time passes. Marshall did put up some nice numbers for the Reds last season, but you still would have to consider that a nice haul for a middle reliever (in my humble opinion).

    On a side note, I’ve become so accustomed to coming here for my quick catch up on all things Cubs, that I’ve started taking these bullet posts for granted. Brett – thanks so much for the work you do, and especially these bullet articles. You make it easy to keep up on all Cubs news in one easy read, and it’s made being a Cub fan a lot more enjoyable since I found this site. Kudos to you, my friend. Keep up the good work.

    • http://thecubcontrarian.blogspot.com Kyle

      Still love that trade.

      Think about the hole in our rotation losing Wood would bring. We desperately needed a long-term, cost-controlled starting pitcher who could reliably tie down a spot even if he wasn’t great. I would have done Marshall for Wood straight-up.

  • DarthHater

    Coleman is a known commodity and a few good innings in spring training does not change that. It’s good that he has enough fire in his belly to be disappointed at not making the ML team out of camp, but does he really think that bitching about it to the PRESS does anything at all to help his future prospects?

  • Nomars left glove

    I personally welcome a move to I would go to more Cubs games, guaranteed. Everyone talks about the fact that Wrigley is a money maker. I’m not sure that these people are considering the fact that the Cubs could build a much larger park and still sell it out. If they consistently sell 3 million tickets a year, imagine how many they would sell if they got rid of the burden of a tiny ballpark with no parking. I hate to sound like a sell out, because I truly love the history of the game in Wrigley, but I love Miller Park with its roof, parking, restaurants, score boards, etc. also, know that Chicago is very expensive to do business in, imagine how much more money they’d make on food, beer, and tickets without chicago,s onerous taxes not playing a factor.

    • DocPeterWimsey

      The tourist attraction is Wrigley, not the Cubs. A big reason why people doubt that the Cubs would still consistently sell out games is that some of us doubt that the Cubs can do this without boost that tourists give to ticket sales.

      • Nomars left glove

        I think that this logic is flawed.
        1st. In all of the times that I have gone to Wrigley field and met people from out of state, they have come “to see a Cubs game” not to see Wrigley field. Most have been WGN out of state Cubs fans, not baseball park historians.
        2nd. A lot of local people I know don’t go to Cubs games because it is outrageously expensive and inconvenient. Sure, there is public transportation but most people I know would rather drive.
        3. The Wrigleyville atmosphere is reproducible. Especially when it comes with the type of financial incentive that this has attached to it.
        4. Most Cubs fans I know actually live in the suburbs. Look, it’s not like Rosemont is on the border on Iowa. It is a very near suburb with very good transportation.
        5. True Cubs fans will go to where the Cubs are, irrespective of location. Ask Yankees,cardinals, White sox, or dodgers fans. I might also ask Brett, he knows a bit about sports tourism. I bet he’d see a Cubs game in Rosemont.

        • DocPeterWimsey

          The logic is not flawed: you are challenging the soundness of the premises, which is a very different statement. Moreover, one could stand your claim on its head: “coming to see a Cubs game” is not “coming to see the Cubs” and it’s just as synonymous with “coming to see Wrigley.”

          Moreover, there is a very unsound aspect to your reasoning: it’s based on people “you know.” Given people I know, the 2000 election was a squeeker between Al Gore and Ralph Nader: that 3rd party guy wasn’t on the radar. Given people I know, the average age of getting married is in the mid-30′s and the average number of kids is 1.0. Given people I know, far and away the most common religious affiliation is “None” (or “the Marxists were right on that count.”) Etc., etc. People that individuals know represent a very non-random cull of the overall population.

          Finally, I would note that there is a huge tautological element to your final argument: True Cubs fans will go wherever; ergo, the ones that won’t go elsewhere are not True Cubs fans and thus we don’t need to worry about them. Well, most Cubs fans will not meet such definitions of “True Cubs Fans” and they contribute a lot more $$$$ to the coffers than the fundamentalists, I mean, TRUE Cubs fans do!

    • Tommy

      Just to bring up some points that others have mentioned here before.

      Without Wrigley:
      1) Tourists coming into Chicago that make a stop to see historic Wrigley, no longer have that incentive. Tourists don’t travel to Rosemont for vacation.
      2) Casual fans that follow the Cubs because of the mystique of Wrigley, the 100 years of futility, and the curse would no longer have that connection.
      3) Moving from the 3rd largest city in the nation, a city of 3m people to a suburb that has a fraction of that would affect attendance.

      As someone who has gone to Fenway park twice in his life, I can honestly say that were the Red Sox playing somewhere else, I wouldn’t have scheduled that in to my visit out there. I went to see Fenway, not the Red Sox. I would assume there would be a large contingent of ticket sales lost to that were the Cubs ever to move.

      Look, we’re all frustrated with the negotiations, and it does seem like the Cubs get the short end of the stick compared to the rest of MLB when it comes to this sort of thing. Fact is though, moving out of Wrigley, and especially Chicago is an unknown, but very likely a bad financial decision. They know they have an incredible fan base right now, so why would you risk changing that dynamic? It just isn’t worth the gamble.

      • Rcleven

        And the same arguments were made when the Ranger’s moved out of Dallas to Arlington.
        Build a winning team and the fans will come.

        • caryatid62

          You’re running a business. You can either:

          a. Have a guaranteed revenue stream regardless of the quality of your product

          or

          b. Have a revenue stream that is dependent upon the quality of your product, which is variable and subject to A LOT of factors completely out of your control.

          Which one insures the profitability of your business?

        • Tommy

          I don’t think comparing the Rangers to the Cubs is a very good comparison. The Rangers have only been a franchise since 1961. There is a huge difference in nostalgia and history there, not to mention Dallas is half the size of Chicago.

      • Nomars left glove

        I’m a bit too lazy to write all of what I just responded to Doc with, but I would add that if you have faith that the current ownership and front office can build a solid, consistently winning team through belief in an ideology in a Cubs-way, it is hard to believe that you don’t think that these same guys can’t take Wrigley feel to another park.
        Chicago is the 3rd largest city in the U.S. and Rosemont is right outside of it. Opponents to change like to point out that Rosemont is not in the city, but it’s not in a corn field somewhere. It would probably be far more convenient to get to for even people who live in the city.
        Also, although Fenway park got your business twice because of “mystique”, actual fans make up the bulk of their business and fans would follow the sawx to another field if they felt that it was the best for the team.

        • caryatid62

          It’s not more convenient. Anyone who has travelled to O’Hare knows that.

  • Kevin

    If they build a generic cookie cutter stadium similar to U.S. Cellular Field then I totally agree. A new stadium with as much appeal as Wrigley Field would continue to attract fans from all over the country. Don’t under estimate how many Cubs fans exist.

    • Rcleven

      We live in the Mid West. It’ cold in April and can be cold in October.
      If done right, a stadium with a roof that retracts, taking on a partner like the Bears, where it becomes a usable arena year round it could make financial success. Even makes Chicago a Super Bowl destination.

    • caryatid62

      No, it wouldn’t. It just wouldn’t.

      The entire “move the Cubs to Rosemont” idea is utterly laughable. It’s not happening. Move on.

      • Andy Robillard

        Thanks for sharing your opinion, alderman.

        • caryatid62

          Yeah, because this ridiculous scenario in which the Cubs take the guaranteed billions of dollars (over the next 20 years or so) to move to a suburb when (a) no team has done a city-suburb move in 20 years (for obvious reasons), and (b) they’d be losing the guaranteed revenue stream that comes with Wrigley is so plausible that anyone who opposes it must be in cahoots with the alderman.

          I want the Cubs to get everything they’re asking for and support their position on the rooftop issue. However, the threat to move is utterly laughable. They’re not moving. Get over it.

  • The Dude Abides

    “I really like the possibility of production out of center field and left field platoons involving Sappelt, David DeJesus, Nate Schierholtz, and Scott Hairston, especially if Dale Sveum really commits to it. In that plan, the Cubs could see league-average production from those positions – maybe even a touch better – for dirt cheap.”

    I like that – cheap and at or a little above league averages if everything goes right. Perfect description of the 2013 Chicago Cubs. Don’t aim to high, don’t spend money, hope for the best…

  • DarthHater

    “I really like the possibility of production out of center field and left field platoons involving Sappelt, David DeJesus, Nate Schierholtz, and Scott Hairston”

    Don’t you mean a right field platoon? Isn’t Soriano still the Cubs’s left fielder?

    • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

      Yeah. Just a slip.

      • DarthHater

        We are an unforgiving lot, aren’t we? ;-)

  • Saving Grace

    Brett wrote it it wrong in the bullets and the dude abides copied it the way it was written.

    Maybe it was wishful thinking in Brett’s subconscious that Soriano will be traded.

  • DONNIE621

    DarthHater
    March 24, 2013 at 2:30 pm | Permalink | Reply
    I saw a young guy by the side of the road who had been hit by a car in a remote area. He needed emergency assistance. I considered calling 911 and stopping to help, but I don’t have that much time left before I die myself and I still have a lot of things to do, so I just drove on.

    Wow! I would like to think that this is a feeble attempt at something… but I think you just gave a true glimpse of your character.

    • bbmoney

      Feeble? I thought it was a wonderful satirical comment made after a pretty stupid comment about old people not being around for too long and thereby their opinion not really mattering.

      Made me laugh.

    • Drew7

      How you been, Roy?

    • DarthHater

      Gee, Donnie, that was a satirical comment directed at Bubbles’ apparent views about old folks. I thought the satire was obvious enough not to need any indicator beyond the :-P that I put at the end of the comment. Guess I was wrong.

      Normally, I might make a smartass remark at this point, but I misinterpreted someone else’s joke here just yesterday, so this one’s a mulligan as far as I’m concerned. ;-)

  • cubfanincardinalland

    Where do you guys come up with this myth that tourists flock to Cubs games to see Wrigley Field? Rosemont is 12 miles from Wrigley, DuPage County is 16 miles. It’s still Chicago boys.
    Truth is always stranger than fiction. You have a city so screwed up, it is shutting down part of it’s public education system. One of it’s business icon presents a half a billion dollar plan to invest in the city, and they are stonewalled? Have to get approval for advertising in their own building, and what time of day they can operate their business. The Ricketts or anyone else would be fools to continue to try and operate under this climate. I really thought Emanuel was more astute than this.

  • Tommy

    “Where do you guys come up with this myth that tourists flock to Cubs games to see Wrigley Field?”

    Mostly from tourist sites, like this one:

    http://gochicago.about.com/od/attractionsandlandmarks/tp/chicago_tourist_attractions.htm

  • caryatid62

    Mostly due to the Cubs, who reported that over 1/3 of their attendance over the last five years was travelers.

    Rosemont might be 12 miles, but it’s 50 minutes by public transportation and 40 minutes by car (in traffic). DuPage county is an hour for either.

    It’s fine to criticize the manner in which the city has dropped the ball on negotiations, because they have…badly. But, I’m sorry, the idea that the Cubs would move is stupid. It’s never, ever, ever, ever, ever, ever, ever, ever, ever, ever, ever, ever happening.

    • Kevin

      Please tell us how you really feel!

    • BluBlud

      Right, because in the year of 2375, the Cubs will still be plYing in Wrigley Field.

      • caryatid62

        That’s a joke, right?

  • cubfanincardinalland

    You guys are deluding yourself, tourists don’t come to look at a ballpark, they come to see the Cubs play. You are naïve to think the Cubs are not moving, I have been told this week, that they don’t get the laundry list by the first, they are opening up the bidding. They told that idiot Rahm as such, he cut his spring break short and headed home. Damage control on steroids about to begin.

    • caryatid62

      Literally none of that is true. He didn’t cut his spring break short–in fact, he was scheduled to come home Friday afternoon/evening, which was exactly when he came home (those following the school closing issue know that).

      If you don’t think that tourists come to see Wrigley, I don’t know what to tell you. You’re just wrong.

      They’re not moving. I would literally bet my house on it.

      • JR

        Ok, thanks for the update from the horses mouth Rahm…

        • caryatid62

          This is ridiculous. As I wrote above-I AGREE WITH THE CUBS’ POSITION. They should have gotten what they wanted without it coming to this. They provide tangible benefits for the neighborhood, and the businesses (including the rooftops) depend entirely on the Cubs for their profitability.

          However, just because I agree with the Cubs doesn’t mean the threat that they’re going to move isn’t stupid. It’s a laughable threat that has literally zero chance of happening, and anyone who takes it seriously is either naive beyond imagination or is not being intellectually honest.

          This is just insane, and I can’t believe people are actually taking this with even 1% of seriousness.

          • cubfanincardinalland

            It’s a baseball stadium (and a worn out and becoming obsolete one), not the Sistine Chapel or the US Capitol. Stadiums are torn down and sports franchises move all the time. There are only two baseball stadiums in the last 100 years that teams have not moved from. It is the norm, not the exception.
            I think what Brett and some of the posters on here don’t take into account, under the current situation, the Cubs are basically forced to move. No billion dollar business can invest hundreds of millions of dollars into their facilities, if they do not maintain control of them, and expect to remain profitable and survive. And doing nothing ensures the stadium slowly falls apart.
            Under the current business situation, moving is the absolute prudent course to take, increased revenue and control of your brand. And the Cubs are the brand, not a ballpark.

            • caryatid62

              The problem with your statement is the “under the current situation” part. The “current situation” is all part of a negotiation. It’s obvious that the current situation will not last, that they will get a deal done with the city, and that the Cubs will remain profitable. The threat to move is a negotiation tactic, and a bad one at that.

              Furthermore, teams do not move “all the time.” 2 teams have relocated in the last 40 years. Only one team in the last 40 years has moved from a large urban area to the suburbs. Not only is a city-suburb move rare, it’s damn near nonexistent.

              A move would absolutely not increase revenue–in fact, it would significantly reduce revenue because it would eliminate a large percentage of the fans who make up that 37% of tourists who current attend games. Anyone who thinks that revenue will increase by eliminating up to 25% of paid attendance is fooling themselves.

              The ballpark is an integral part of what the Cubs have been creating for their brand over the last 30 years, so to claim the elimination of it would increase the viability of that brand is ludicrous. Aside from the obvious issues, the cost of reshaping an entire marketing campaign and long-term strategy would cost the company millions of additional dollars in man-hours as well as productivity.

              It’s interesting that you mention that only two teams have not moved in the last 100 years. Oddly enough, those two were two of the top four grossing franchises in baseball. Although correlation is not causation, it’s obvious that both the Red Sox and Cubs don’t heavily benefit from their stadiums.

              And OF COURSE a billion dollar business can invest millions into it’s facilities if the resulting income from those millions is billions of dollars in revenue, which is what the Cubs would get from a rebuild.

              The Cubs should get everything they want for their renovation now that they’ve been willing to foot the bill for it. This has no bearing on the stupidity of the threat to move.

              • cubfanincardinalland

                Well thought out response, but I think you are being much too optimistic on where the state of this negotiation is today. It’s in the shitter. This has been going on for two years.
                The Tribune article touched on what I had heard through the grapevine. That the Ricketts are pretty much shell shocked at this point. When they came out with a well thought out plan, with a way to pay for it, and told the city they would pay for it themselves, they really thought it was a done deal.(I mean what sane city would put up roadblocks for something like this?)
                Perhaps they were naïve, but at this point they are questioning the whole model. That the city and the neighborhood is still making them jump through hoops, and dictating what they can do even inside the park, has really made them look at things in a brand new light.
                I said on here months ago this would not end well, because I knew the city would jerk them around. Chicago is a mess.
                We will have to disagree on the revenue question. I just believe the franchise is the asset, and the park has been a liability for years. I travel and go to different games(SF, LA, Phoenix). I don’t go to see the park, I go to watch the teams play ball.

      • BluBlud

        You kust be a rooftop owner. You must be willing to bet the house that the Cubs won’t move, because if they do move, your house won’t be worth jack squat anyway. So, you really have nothing lose. ;-)

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