What with the holiday, and attendant family obligations, I watched yesterday’s Cubs/Reds game on a tiny screen on my computer when I could sneak a peak. I didn’t see every pitch, but I saw enough to get the lay of the game, and to see Reds hitters take advantage of what looked like softening stuff from Carlos Villanueva once they’d seen him two or three times already that day.

But, now that I was able to look at the replay of the game on a larger, higher-definition screen, and I can see that I was dead wrong. There isΒ a pretty clear explanation for Villanueva’s troubles yesterday, and I’m sorry that I have to reveal such a frightful truth …

villanueva no stache

Carlos, NOOOO!!! Bring it back. I will send you more mustache wax if you need it.

  • jh03

    There are two things about this Cubs team that I never want to see end..

    1. Villanueva’s mustache
    2. Valbuena’s bat flip singles

    These two things make this team enjoyable. I don’t care what you people say.

    • http://CubbiesCrib.com GarrettFilsonFS


      Even better, when Valbueno flips it on a fly out. Usually I don`t care for “showboating”, but man do I love bat flips.

    • CubsFaninMS

      True! And sadly, Luis Valbuena has turned from Mickey Mantle in Spring Training to Mickey Morandini in the regular season.

      • http://CubbiesCrib.com GarrettFilsonFS

        Yeah, I don`t care if RR wanted to play the matchups in the first month, but like everyone says, Olt should be getting more ABs consistently soon.
        Can we all spaz out over Valbueno`s walking though? Gee whiz..

        • half_full_beer_mug

          Because he isn’t getting on base, or is it because he fails to make contact with the ball so often, or maybe it’s because he’s been incredibly lucky so far when he does make contact.

          Yeah lets always start MIKE OLT!

          • http://CubbiesCrib.com GarrettFilsonFS

            Olt never had issues drawing walks in the minors, so that leads me to believe if he was in there 5-6 games a week he`d be fine. He`ll start getting more starts, thought so it`ll be fine.

            • http://CubbiesCrib.com GarrettFilsonFS


        • CubsFaninMS

          I’d prefer playing Olt at third, Valbuena at second, and Barney as the 2nd base backup. Valbuena’s OBP is looking really good right now. Small sample size or not, that’s one of our biggest weaknesses offensively. Having his bat (or batter’s eye) out of the lineup is a loss at this moment in time.

          • willis

            Yeah, this is the right thing to do. Barney is horrible at the plate and if we’re going to see what Olt can be, I’d still like Valbuena in the lineup at 2B because he sees a lot of pitches, gets on base and is decent with the glove.

        • cubbiehawkeye

          Did you watch the game, Garrett? Olt looks lost most of the time. I mentioned this in another post…his first couple of at bats yesterday were awful.

      • ssckelley

        True but I will take a .419 OBP from Valbuena any time. He never did hit for enough power to really make a difference anyway, but he provides some value in the 2 slot if he can keep being patient and taking walks.

        • GoCubs

          Ok…So, has his .419 OBP ensured more wins for the Cubs compared to last year this time?

          • Patrick W.

            Is he the only player batting?

    • Funn Dave


      I like this one. He looks like he’s thinking, “oh, shit–I’m supposed to start running, but I hafta flip this bat quick first!”

  • Medicos


    One of my most interesting memories of being at the Wrigley Field occurred in the summer of 2012. We were eating lunch at the outdoor area in the upper deck under the pressbox. BRUCE LEVINE, who then was still working at ESPN 1000 now on the WSCR, sat down at the same table. We all began talking about the Cubs, who were now being run by Hoystein. As he got up to leave, I asked him, When will the Cubs ever win the WS????” He adamantly answered, ” THE CUBS WILL NEVER WIN THE WORLD SERIES” and this from an extremely knowledgeable baseball reporter with 38-yrs of experience in covering the Cubs. I sure hope he was wrong.


    • Dustin S

      Most memorable moment is easy, when I was a kid at my first game for the first time walking up the stairs opening out to the beautiful view of the green grass of Wrigley. When my train pulls in and it’s time to leave this fine world, that will probably be one of the last memories that flash across.

      #2 most memorable less mushy time, going to a game with a large group in college where we got our name on the board. At that game 4 of us went shirtless with C-U-B-S spelled out on our chests, but then sat out of order so we spent most of the game spelling out S-C-U-B, which since then somehow seems appropriately funny in the bad times. Plus the Cubs came back from 8 runs down against the Giants and won that game.

    • DarthHater

      1984, Cubs were hosting the Phillies with Gary Maddox in CF. I was in the bleachers and ragged on Maddox the whole game. Following the final out of the game, as he started to trot toward the infield, I once again explained to him his suckitude and he stopped, turned around, and glared at me. I actually kinda felt bad. I suspect beer may have been involved. πŸ˜›

      Second most memorable moment was not actually in the Friendly Confines, but on the way there. Grade school field trip to Wrigley, on a school bus, on an exit ramp from the Kennedy Expressway. I fired a large, juicy spitball out the window of the bus and landed it splat in the middle of the windshield of a car on an adjoining ramp. In retrospect, it was dangerous and I probably should have kinda felt bad. Beer definitely was not involved πŸ˜›

    • Sandberg

      I was 10 or 11 and brought my mitt to the game. We had some box seats and I decided to walk back and forth in the aisle between the 100 and 200 sections. At one point, someone fouled a ball off and it was coming right for me. About 5 feet from my mitt, some dewd with a beer in his hand pushes me out of the way to grab at the ball, and spills his beer all over me. Neither one of us got the ball.

      So, yes, beer was involved. πŸ˜‰

    • http://www.friendly-confines.com hansman

      “He adamantly answered, ” THE CUBS WILL NEVER WIN THE WORLD SERIES” and this from an extremely knowledgeable baseball reporter with 38-yrs of experience in covering the Cubs.”

      So his tenure covering the Cubs allows him to see the future?

      • Brocktoon

        Get back to when Chris Volstad answers the question.

    • http://www.friendly-confines.com hansman

      Most memorable? Defeating the security guard with my ninja-death hamburgers after I touched the ivy.

      It felt like a plant.

      • TWC

        “Defeating the security guard by breaking down in tears, and wailing, ‘Please, please don’t arrest me!’ after I touched the ivy.”


        (Pretty sure that Ace could vouch for the accuracy of this, right?)

    • Thiscantbegood

      Most memorable memory for me would have to be back in 2008 when both the White Sox and Chicago Cubs were top of their respected divisions. I went to Wrigley with my best friend, his brother and his uncle. His uncle and I were Cubs fans while him and his brother were White Sox fans. Of course this was the game Derrek Lee and Aramis Ramirez hit back to back homers in the 7th inning to tie up the game, then in the 9th A-Ram hit a walk off homer to win us the game. Best game of my life, and to be around both Cubs fans who were going crazy and White Sox fans who were whining couldn’t be better! lol.

  • JulioZuleta

    True Life: I’m a Cubs Fan: My most memorable moment at Wrigley Field was probably seeing Tom Glavine’s 300th win… Close runner up a 2 HR Sammy Sosa game in 1998. Close third: Hanging out with Brett :) Winky face.

    • JulioZuleta

      Ugh. Was supposed to be a reply to medicos. Making rookie mistakes lately.

  • Mreverything

    For me it was opening day 1969 vs Phillies. Banks hits 2 hrs that game but Don Money kept coming up money for the Phils. Top of the 11th Phils get a run and it looks like were dead. Then Willie Smith steps up with a man on and hits a home run to win the game. The magical 4.5 month season of 1969 was off and running.