pearl jam wrigley fieldYou know it’s been a rumor-heavy morning when the Bullets don’t arrive until mid-day. It’s OK to admit it: you didn’t even notice the missing Bullets …

  • Pearl Jam is playing at Wrigley Field tonight, about which you already knew and are happy (because you’re going), or about which you’d forgotten and are now bummed out (because you’re not going). How stoked are fans for the concert? They were lined up early morning yesterday to buy the concert merchandise. If you braved all of that Mankind, I guess that makes you a Better Man than I. If you decide to get a beer after the concert, ring me up, because I Got ID. Do these puns make you Smile? (But, seriously, if they play ‘(Someday We’ll Go) All the Way,’ and it isn’t recorded *legally* for distribution among the masses, I will be very sad.)
  • Jed Hoyer spoke with Dave Kaplan last night about a variety of things, including rumors, the Wrigley renovation, and developing prospects. He also addressed outside commentary about the Cubs’ top prospects not really being interested in taking walks. “I think Soler is going to wind up being a guy that’s going to be a pretty high on-base guy,” Hoyer told Kaplan. “We feel the same way about Bryant. I think Baez and Almora will continue to develop their on-base skills. They may never be high walk guys. We’re certainly hoping get to that average walk rate, if we blend them with the rest of the guys in the lineup it will be okay.” I listened to Hoyer’s interview, and he was putting it as politely and positively as possible that Almora and Baez are probably never going to be high OBP guys, but that’s OK. It’s not their game, and it doesn’t mean they can’t still be huge contributors. And, hell, if they hit .280 to .300 (very plausible), their OBP will probably be fine, anyway.
  • Shawn Camp is a Diamondback (well, a minor league Diamondback, to be precise, after signing on with them on a minor league deal). Best of luck to him in figuring out what was wrong with his slider.
  • Although we’ll discuss it more next week in advance of the full City Council meeting, here’s a good take from Danny Ecker at Crain’s on yesterday’s Plan Commission approval of the comprehensive Wrigley renovation and development plan. You can see what’s coming, what’s been agreed to, and what minor bits are left to be negotiated.
  • You may have seen the “Billy Cub” mascot walking around outside of Wrigley Field over the last few years. Well, it turns out that he’s not actually sanctioned by the team, and now there’s a little bit of a scrape going on about his ability to keep doing what he’s doing (posing for pictures, shaking hands, accepting tips, etc.). I try not to call upon my legal experience too frequently – because I am no longer a practicing attorney, and no, I can’t offer any legal advice – but one thing that being in the law showed me is just how true the whole “two sides to every story” thing is. (Indeed, The Wife often gets frustrated with me when I offer up the opposing viewpoint to an obviously horrible thing that Person X is doing.) In this situation, I can certainly see why “Billy Cub” wants to be able to keep doing what he’s doing, and why it seems harmless at worst and fun for the fans at best. On the other hand, I can see where the Cubs are coming from. Because of the way Billy performs, it sure looks like it’s an official Cubs thing. And if fans think it’s an official Cubs thing, then when Billy reportedly swears at fans or grouses about a lousy tip, it reflects badly on the organization … and it’s completely out of their control. So, as I said, I can see both sides.
  • Brandon Phillips continues to say incredible things. And I don’t mean the “super wonderful” definition of incredible. Specifically, he still can’t believe – and is saying this publicly – that the Reds “slap[ed him] in the face” by signing Joey Votto to an extension before signing Phillips to his extension. There has to be an inside joke here that I’m missing.
  • Carew

    Phillips is an ass. And I find him to be very overrated

    • Internet Random

      But he hates the Cardinals, and that’s pretty ameliorative in my book.

    • ChrisN324

      I can’t stand him. He definitely made it worse by being a sore loser after Barney got the GG last year. The guy’s a clown.

      • Carew

        Internet Random: that does boost it a bit, but then again he’s a red, so now its back to where the dislike was. Oh well.

        ChrisN: That is what turned it for me. That was terrible way to react, and only a buttwipe reacts like that

    • Cubman23

      Hilarious. He’s not in the stratosphere of a player like Votto. Any GM in baseball would work on extending Votto before Phillips. What an ass.

    • Carew

      He also used the term swag…not helping his case at all

  • Jim

    I’d give the naming rights to several of my unborn children to go to that concert.

  • Sean

    Doesn’t Pearl Jam record and release all of their shows?

    • Joker

      They sure do!

  • Cubbie Blues

    Do you mean this Billy Cub?


    I could see where they would have a “Grievance”.

  • Wrigley11

    I’m bringing the Kleenex just in case they play Someday We’ll Go All the Way.

  • Cubbie Blues

    Wait, FanGraphs has Phillips on a:

    $72.5m / 6 Years (2012 – 2017) (Edit)
    signed by Cincinnati Reds on 4/10/2012 (Extension)
    2012: $12.5M, 2013: $10M, 2014: $11M, 2015: $12M, 2016: $13M, 2017: $14M

    and Votto with a:

    $38m / 3 Years (2011 – 2013) (Edit)
    signed by Cincinnati Reds on 1/17/2011 (Extension)
    2011: $5.5M, 2012: $9.5M, 2013: $17M

    Of course they are going to extend Votto first Phillips is on the hook until 2017 and Votto was a free agent after this year.

    This is Votto’s new contract:

    $225m / 10 Years (2014 – 2023) + 1 Option Years (Edit)
    signed by Cincinnati Reds on 4/3/2012 (Extension)
    2014: $12M, 2015: $14M, 2016: $20M, 2017: $22M, 2018: $25M, 2019: $25M, 2020: $25M, 2021: $25M, 2022: $25M, 2023: $25M
    2024 Team Option: $20M ($7M buyout)
    No Trade: Full

    • hansman1982

      Ya, he seems like a whiney baby about it. Face facts dude, Votto is a better player than you and therefore the Reds locked him up first.

      Although, Phillips was on the last year of his deal and Votto was under control through this season.

  • Stinky Pete

    RE Phillips: Maybe not an inside joke so much as an Inside Job.

  • Cubsfan21

    Matt Garza ‏@Gdeuceswild Protected account 7h

    Gotta love TSA, got harassed about a snap back! As homeboy strolls by me unquestioned about turbine…god thing I pay taxes for #freedom

    Garza can be such a fucking idiot sometimes. #goodriddance

    • CubFan Paul

      Everything should be searchable at this point. Everything.

      • forlines

        Have you scheduled your colonscopy with the TSA yet?

    • King Jeff

      I don’t know, if someone walked past me with a turbine in the airport unchecked, I’d be concerned too. I’d really be worried about it being the turbine from the plane I was getting ready to board.

    • Big Joe

      Not sure which was more ridiculous, the “turbine” statement, or a grown ass man beginning a thought with “homeboy”.

  • Joker

    Ace – are you in town for the show?

  • Ash

    Seriously with the puns, you could do Better Man.

    • Ash

      Scratch that, you got it. Damn short term memory went Black.

  • King Jeff

    “There are bridges across town with another baseball team, and people are not throwing beer off these bridges across Chicago.”

    This is my favorite snippet from that article.

  • Cubbie Blues

    Brett, if you wanted a Garza break, FanGraphs just came out with their top 10 on the trade value listing they have been doing.

    • Brett

      NO BREAKS!

      (Sorry. It already feels like the Deadline.)

  • waittilthisyear

    for those of you who want to meet before the show, ill be the drunk guy in a gray shirt and blue jeans

  • Marco Esquandolas

    I know Theo is a big PJ fan, but the real party is at Northerly Island for PHiSH.

    Just saying.

  • chrisfchi

    I enjoy the bullets, doesn’t matter what time of day. Hope your keeping your fingers cool(all this Garza stuff is going to give you carpal tunnel)

  • fromthemitten

    This is the reason why the Cubs don’t want this guy outside their stadium, and I agree with them because of shit like this:

  • DarthHater
    • Brett

      I’m as obsessive about that stuff as anyone, and I didn’t really see too much there to freak out about. Concerts are a part of the deal, and Tunney probably does legitimately now think to himself, “Hmm… should we have a better plan in place for these additional, later concerts/ballgames?” That stuff has already been approved by City Council, but I don’t think it’s unreasonable of him to have a moment of pause. I don’t see him as saying a late concert is going to make him blow the deal up.

      • DarthHater

        Hey, my job is to feed the Dark side by sowing fear and chaos…