matt garza cubsIt wasn’t until I’d put The Little Girl to bed and settled in front of my a few pitches into the Cubs/Pirates game last night that I remembered: I’m blacked out of Pirates games. This, despite living 185 miles from Pittsburgh with no channels in the Columbus area that even think about carrying Pirates games. I’m reminded of the poor folks in Iowa who are blacked out of about 30% of all MLB games for ridiculous reasons, and I’m similarly reminded that these blackouts – really, the territorial restrictions – are what drives up the local TV deals that we’ve seen exploding in baseball over the last couple of years. Until MLB figures out a way to capture local markets within (and share that revenue with local providers who’ve got a deal with a team), the blackouts will remain in place. Unless, of course, a lawsuit takes the system down, which could kill the big money TV deals before the Cubs have a chance to get one. It’s a complicated mess, and one probably not appropriate for a Bullets intro …

  • Matt Garza is set to join the Cubs in Atlanta, where he’ll continue his rehab from a strained lat. His elbow is still feeling good, so that’s the good news. Garza will be getting back on the mound for the first time since late February when he suffered a setback in his recovery from the lat injury. That injury occurred back on February 17th – which was, itself, the first time he’d faced live batters since his elbow problem developed last July – when he suffered the lat injury. Conservatively, you’d give him at least a month of readying himself for the regular season, so I wouldn’t expect to see Garza pitching with the Cubs until mid-May at this point.
  • The Cubs have started the year 0-13 with runners in scoring position. About that, Dale Sveum put it plainly to the media: “We don’t have a hit with men in scoring position. We need to get better at that.” Yes. Yes, you do.
  • There was a scary moment last night when it appeared that Wandy Rodriguez had drilled Anthony Rizzo in the head. Rizzo immediately hit the dirt, and his helmet went flying … but fortunately the pitch actually hit his shoulder, and he was fine.
  • More Dale Sveum and Chris Bosio defending Carlos Marmol. They’re hoping he gets a chance to get back out there soon.
  • Perhaps you can get out some of your frustration about last night’s loss by captioning this Charles LeClaire/USA Today photo of the moment Brent Lillibridge struck out looking on the 10th pitch of an at bat with the bases loaded:

  • hansman1982



  • cubfanincardinalland

    Well I see our favorite alderman Tunney is back in the news this morning with his latest obstructionist drivel. Says there won’t be a resolution of the many “asks” as he calls them anytime soon, but he is all for the Cubs resolving they are staying in Lakeview. And his new thing is now the hotel, which he is whining about.
    If any Cub organization people scan this blog, please I am begging you, do not make any type of deal unless you get what you want up front. Starting the renovation before you get what you need, the city will own the Cubs. They will regret it for decades.

  • Cubbies4Life

    ProfessorCub – definitely the best caption of all! Farley Flash – good post.

  • Jim

    I am really sick of hearing about Garza. It seems like since we have gotten him, there is always something news worthy on him, and most based on his health. I will be surprised if he pitches before the All Star break, and be even more surprised if he is healthy at the trade deadline.

  • beerhelps

    “I have a degree in dicknology!”

  • Andrew

    I don’t worry too much about the tv bubble bursting if blackouts go away. I think the reason the bubble is so big is much more about channels competing for programming that can’t be DVR’d or watched on hulu or netflix. mlbtv attracts fans that are out of market more than anything, because most people have cable TV anyways. I doubt many people would prefer to watch mlbtv than regular cable TV so the cable tv contracts i think are here to stay regardless of mlbtv

  • cb

    I too live in Columbus. I tried to watch the game yesterday while flying from Vegas to Atlanta to Columbus, but said I was blacked out. I tried to log in on my VPN and it still read me as being in Columbus.

  • Other Edwin

    “If your argument is that Theo/Jed are just flat out smarter than other GMs and so we’ll be ok – why did they get outsmarted in these situations?”

    Because you’re looking a small number of isolated situations, and you’re using hindsight that Theo/Jed didn’t have at the time they actually made the moves. Even great GM’s make mistakes, even bad GM’s make good moves every once in awhile.

    Theo himself even admitted that he’s going to make mistakes. All GM’s do. I don’t expect Theo to make the right move every single time. I expect him to make more good moves than bad moves.

    • hansman1982

      or at least fewer bad moves than all the other GM’s

      • Edwin

        That’s a fun way to put it.

    • Rebuilding

      Should I look at the fact that we lost 101 games last year partially through roster mismanagement that was either negligent or by design to get a better draft pick?

      • Edwin

        I guess? I don’t know what you’re trying to say with this comment.

  • bobo justis

    Regarding blackouts, three letters. VPN

    (They won’t exclude you if they think you are in Argentina.)

  • YourResidentJag

    Actually, I live in Iowa and through Directv get Royals, Cubs, Sox, Cards, Twins and Brewers games and MLB is working on removing blackout restrictions after 2013.