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angry-mob2A reminder: I’ll be at the Cubs’ home opener tomorrow – before, during, and after the game – and I’d love to meet up with any and all of you who will be in Wrigleyville.

Also, a tease: the minor league seasons open up today, and in celebration, there’s a very special, enormous top prospects list dropping later today …

  • Remember that expanded free parking lot and shuttle the Cubs are doing this season (something they were required to do as part of City Council’s approval of the Wrigley Field renovation and development plan)? Proof that no good act goes unpunished – or, perhaps, that there are enough people in the world that you can always find someone to bitch about everything – the Cubs were lambasted by some residents in the area of the parking lot (DNAinfo). As with virtually everything related to the renovation, I’m pretty sure this is much ado about nothing, but these folks won’t see it for themselves until the games actually start. And lest you think I’m speaking out of my depth, here’s BN’er Adam, who lives in the area, discussing the issue on Twitter. The money quote:

  • You can read the game recap for last night’s game over at MLB.com, which features the standard quotes from the involved players/manager. There really isn’t too much you can say after a loss like that (and one the game before) other than the standard stuff: keep playing hard, stay positive, etc.
  • Good news on the rehabilitation front: Jake Arrieta will start for the Tennessee Smokies on Saturday, per Carrie Muskat. It’s his first minor league rehab start (shoulder stiffness), and he’ll probably do two or three thereafter. That puts him on pace to return in the April 20 to 25 range, which means it’s been a conservative process for Arrieta, but that’s fine, long-term.
  • Ricky Renteria tells CSN that, despite early signals, Darwin Barney isn’t part of a strict platoon just yet (a strict platoon would have Barney starting only against lefties). Things are still in a mix-and-match mode.
  • BN’er Dylan Heuer is a fan-freaking-tastic photographer, and he was at the Iowa Cubs’ media workout yesterday, snapping some incredible pictures. View them rapidly. Side note: first baseman Lars Anderson could not possibly look more like a dude named Lars.
  • Ryan Kalish got a little discussion from BA in their top 10 roster surprises.
  • Isaac

    Definitely a fan of the get-all-of-the-money house rule. Adds to the game immensely.

  • Cornish Heat

    I lived in Wrigleyville for three years at two different residences (one on Magnolia, which is three blocks west of Wrigley Field, and one on Racine, which is two blocks west and a bee-line down the McDonald’s alley).

    The people who own residences in the immediate Wrigleyville area are some of the weirdest and curmudgeoniest people I’ve ever met. Many of them are a bit elderly, purchased their home long before Wrigleyville became what it is today, and haven’t been able to adapt with the changing community… the one that’s been changing for about twenty-five years.

    In particular, my landlord (who lived below me (never make that mistake again)) at Magnolia was one such kook. He threatened me one time with violence when a buddy and me were watching a documentary (The Aristocrats), and he (my buddy) left at 1:00am on a weekend.

    So, yeah. These are the types of people Tom Ricketts and the Cubs business folks get to deal with.

  • Blackhawks1963

    Take the rooftop owners and the “special interests” of Wrigleyville to court and BURY them. Scorched earth all the way. Hire the best damn corporate attorneys money can buy and bankrupt these people in a sea of mortgage debt and attorney fees that shall destroy them and bring a merciful end.

    • Cornish Heat

      Love it. Like General Sherman’s march to the sea in 1864 – burn and destroy everything in your path, and remind them with whom you’re dealing.

      • kj1

        Or Ford’s Theatre in 1865, but besides that Mrs. Lincoln, how was the play?

  • Spriggs

    Awesome photos from BN’er Dylan!

  • cub4life

    Those are some awesome pictures.

  • Diggs

    I live a couple blocks from where the new parking lot will be. I think it’s a great idea.

  • jp3

    They probably hate kittens too…

    • ncsujuri

      Especially kittens in pajamas…

  • mr. mac

    Lars Anderson looks like Charlie Hunnam from Sons of Anarchy.

  • MightyBear

    Kalish did not have a good debut. Looked nervous out there. Should have caught that ball that turned into the first run. Looked over matched at the plate. I’m still a fan of this kid but early on, he didn’t look like a major leaguer.

    • gocatsgo2003

      Imagine that… a guy who hasn’t played in the Bigs since September of 2012 looked a little nervous/excited/jumpy in his first game back at that level.

      • candyland07

        For a player that has not earned the creditability for being on a 25 man roster . Yes he looked nervous and over-matched and that would be normal. Him being on the 25 man roster to start the season was a mistake but every front office needs that one special guy that reports and tattletales on everyone and MR/ Kalish might be that person. – how can a guy that has not swung a bat in two years and had an okay spring jump onto the 25 man roster.

        • http://fullcount1544.blogspot.com FullCountTommy

          Every time I think you can’t possibly say something more absurd than you did the day before, you surprise me and one-up yourself. Kudos to you

  • Nate

    Great photos. Interesting that Baez writes left-handed.

    • JacqueJones

      I was just about to say the same thing, beat me to it

    • djraleigh

      I bet Baez could bat left handed better than the average minor leaguer bats normally.

  • Jon

    Castro should get a good look at that first pick(Baez and Alcantara) cause that is the future SS, 2B combo in Chicago if he doesn’t get his act together.

    • ssckelley

      I bet he hears footsteps!!!

  • JulioZuleta

    -”And I’m Lars.”

    -”Lars?? What kind of name is that? Where are you from anyways?”

    -”Fa(r) away.”

    • Nate

      Who’s Seymour Butts?

  • Darth Ivy

    I’m really getting sick of the Simpsons around here

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L_mrNQBLSMU

  • http://bleachernation.com woody

    Seymour Butts is the cousin of I.P. Nightly of rusty bedsprings fame.

  • djraleigh

    I live right by the parking lot and I’m very excited to put the shuttle to use for week night games. Nothings better than free. I don’t see why residents would be concerned…

  • Camiata2

    It’s like the city council meetings from “Parks & Recreation” have come to life.

  • cow142

    I live 3 blocks from the new parking area and I can actually see some people’s concerns. It will add traffic to Irving Park Rd that use to use Addison. As long as they are efficient in getting the cars in and out I am fine with it. Also if I can walk over 3 blocks and use the free shuttle that would be cool also. To clarify this is by no means a neighborhood against the Cubs type of thing. I live 2 miles from Wrigley in a totally different ward.

  • Medicos

    Addison traffic going west after a ball game is clogged up for 2 miles. So you’d better expect it will be just as bad on Irving Park with all the shuttle buses plus the autos before and after the games to be just as bad. Too bad Phil Wrigley didn’t purchase all the apartment buildings on Waveland and Sheffield when he had the opportunity back in the 1960s. Multilevel parking lots could have easily been constructed and many of these parking problems would have been eliminated.

    • DCF

      And it would have eliminated most of what makes Wrigleyville ( and Wrigley FIeld) popular along with it.
      If you don’t arrive by car, being smack in the middle of everything is pretty cool, as opposed to being smack in the middle of a 1.000 acre parking lot as it is the case at many other sport stadiums.

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