Quantcast

In a few years, having been at today’s game is going to be a great story, much in same way that having been aboard a sinking ship, and living to tell the tale would be. Today, however, I feel a little sick to my stomach. That’s a silly reaction, of course, given that this team was not about to rattle off a 20-game winning streak and make a surprising charge for the playoffs. It’s just … it was a fun damn day before that 9th inning. Why the cosmic hate for the Cubs?

Jeff Samardzija pitched well enough to win, and the bats supported him sufficiently this time around. But Pedro Strop came into his first save opportunity since the changing of the guard with a three run lead, only to throw all over the place. By the time he’d found his command, a Starlin Castro error had helped load the bases. A groundball that hit second base and a hit to right later (that maybe could have been caught), and the game was tied. A blooper to right later, and the game was gone. Justin Ruggiano hurt his hamstring on that last one, and just about no one will remember the homer he hit earlier in the game to extend the Cubs’ lead.

april 23 box

Full box score.

  • waittilthisyear

    i was following on gamecast while in class. i left for the L when the game was entering the 9th. i got home and saw this. after last night’s bull’s game, no less. very uncool, cosmos, very uncool

  • dkap

    I can’t think of a more appropriate way for the Cubs to sum up the franchise’s last 100 years than this game.

    • itzscott

      Yup…. A perfect ending to a perfectly awful 100 years.

      Couldn’t have been scripted any better.

      You’d think they planned this in the clubhouse it was so eerily “Cub-Like”.

  • KHRSS

    If anything this was a very Cubs way to celebrate 100 years of failure.
    Errors, missed catches, walked batters and 3 relievers allowed hits/runs.

    Was there any doubt Russell was going to give up a hit? Bad move to bring him in.

    • willis

      No doubt at all, he always does. How many times does he have to suck before they stop putting him in high leverage situations?

      • craigp

        Amen!!

  • 70’s Cub

    Three years and this FO can’t solve protecting a three run 9th inning lead. The predetermined closer sucked during spring training and still got the job because that is the Cubs Way. Stroup does not have command I would like the Cub General Manger do something and send him down and/or move him to another organization. WTF at this rate season over before May 1st mainly because of acquiring pitchers that have a history of poor command. Memo this summer do not flip players for pitchers that have shitty command and/or Tommy John elbows!

    • http://www.teamfums.org MichiganGoat

      Can we just stop with that tonight it was a nasty lost but let’s not turn this into a front office shit parade.

      • cubbiehawkeye

        Agreed

        • renegade4196

          Why can’t it be? You guys are content with a complete shit bullpen?

          • cubbiehawkeye

            I’m not content with anything about this team right now other than Rizzo, Castro, and Samardzija but it is what it is bro. I hate to be so blunt and non descriptive but thats the only way to describe the organization right now.

            • cubbiehawkeye

              If the front office doesn’t spend serious money next offseason then I think you can get the pitchforks out but I see the front office spending money next year so really this team right is what it is. We don’t have a closer…trial and error man.

              • itzscott

                Spending money on who?

                Who’s going to be available that’s going to make a difference??

                • cubbiehawkeye

                  Lol really? Is that a serious question? I’m not going to do the work for you but go look at a list and tell me you can’t find 10 guys that wouldnt be better than the scrap heaps we have now. I didn’t say they were going to spend money and be a world series team next year but I expect the cubs to be competitive as the years progress and I think some bigger deals get made to get that ball rolling in the right direction. They have to start spending next year it’s a no brainer.

                  • itzscott

                    So in other words, you have no clue who they should target to sign because just about anybody worthwhile has been locked up….but you just want them to spend some money.

                    • cubbiehawkeye

                      That’s not at all what I said or was inferring. My point is their will be plenty of quality pieces to pick up to give us a semi competitive ball club. Not only do I want them to spend money (smart money) but I’m of the opinion that they’ll have to spend money. I believe they’re at that point in the rebuild.

              • Brocktoon

                A lot of people who are saying that now said it in May of 2013 too

          • DarthHater

            A few days ago, the pitchfork wielders were screeching about how everything about this team was shit EXCEPT the bullpen. Now the bullpen blows one game badly and the shittiness of the bullpen is suddenly the central fact in the universe. Nah.

            • jp3

              I never said the bullpen was any good… This team sucks As a collective whole. I do have to say I don’t want to play the whole “we should’ve signed this guy or that guy” BUT you can’t tell me we were so damn poor we can’t do better than Jerry Hairston/Justin Ruggiano/Kalish combo…. I know I’m just crying too but I know we can do better than those shit signings for 3+ years. Nobody gets that kind of rope saying hey I’ve got a 5 year plan…maybe 6 or 7 years

              • DarthHater

                “I never said the bullpen was any good…”

                Well, I wasn’t responding to you, was I? ;-)

                But seriously, I’m pretty much with you. I don’t think fielding this quality of team for this length of time is really required by any reasonable rebuilding strategy. I just think that it’s absurd to treat the results of each day’s individual game (or, even worse, the contents of each day’s lineup card) as if it somehow epitomizes all the organization’s problems in a way that justifies screaming about those same problems every fucking day.

                • DarthHater

                  BTW, that last sentence was not directed at you, jp. That’s just my own form of generalized, exaggerated whining. :-P

                  • jp3

                    Yeah you def didn’t say anything to me about the bullpen. I was just reiterating it really isn’t any good though the results haven’t been terrible -Veras😀. I’m just frustrated and this team makes me want to kick the cutest litter of puppies. I completely agree that this plan is flawed in that we should be too relevant to suck this long, this bad. I do get a little annoyed (not by you) that there are consistently people who say you don’t understand the plan.

                    • DarthHater

                      You just have to remember that the Goat is … well … only a goat. ;-)

                    • DarthHater

                      [img]https://farm8.staticflickr.com/7429/13989379485_e10272e3b6_n.jpg[/img]

                    • jp3

                      Ahh perfect that’s just the pic I had in mind though the wording could be different. “Every time shark pitches…”

            • craigp

              The bullpen has been shit all year. As a collective unit!

          • http://www.teamfums.org MichiganGoat

            Because we all know the story by know… Blah blah blah FO is bullshit blah blah blah. Focus on the actual game instead of spinning bullshit complaining narratives- go to an ESPN board to play that game.

          • DarthHater

            It is perfectly possible to be unhappy with things about the team without feeling compelled to constantly do this all over the internet:
            [img]https://bloodyhelldell.files.wordpress.com/2013/09/70crybaby.gif[/img]

      • notcubbiewubbie

        amen goat

  • cubsfan1594

    I hate to ask but if ruggiano hits the DL who gets the callup (Watkins, vitters, szczur)

    • blublud

      Valaika or Vitters

    • blublud

      Vitters or Valaika

    • renegade4196

      I’d bet on Vitters.

      • augiepb

        I can’t imagine he doesn’t hit the DL just watching him walk off the field today. Just looking who is on the 40 man and what they would be replacing, Vitters really is the only one that makes any sense (RH, OF, Power). It’s too bad because Ruggiano actually was starting to hit a little bit.

        • JCubs79

          It will most likely be Chris Coughlan. The FO want to ensure the tank job this year. Vitters could be decent so don’t bet on him coming up.

  • 70’s Cub

    Castro screwing up again he plays like a player who has been in last place his whole career.

    • cubbiehawkeye

      …care to complain about anything else?

      • DarthHater

        My eyeglasses are pinching my nose.

      • 70’s Cub

        That my point at this rate by May 1st. no more complaining. Until next year!

  • PolarBear

    Anyone else bothered by the fact that ESPN, which is usually nothing but Yankees and Red Sox, has been doing nothing but making fun of the Cubs all afternoon? The guys on TV are basically laughing every time they show the highlights from the game. Just pathetic! And they want to be called professionals. What a joke!!!

    • The Real Wrigley

      If you don’t want to be laughed at, then don’t play the way the Cubs did today . They’re a complete joke. A hot mess. You’re not used to it by now?

    • jp3

      I agree, if you don’t want to be picked on don’t suck for for over a century… Is that too much to ask?

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

        Well…the suck has only been the last 70-80 years.

      • PolarBear

        Wrigley and JP…I’m so sure that you guys could have done better with the hand that Theo and Jed were dealt. At some point, you have to right the ship. It was way of course before they got here and had to deal with the fallout from irrational spending by the previous owner just to drive up their asking price. I am so tired of all this “spend more money, it will fix everything” mentality that floats around on here between people that don’t understand the real problems with this team. The Cubs suck for the very reasons that you are trying to uphold. Your views, simply put, line up with the thinking of the city and all the rooftop owners. Time to get out of the past and move on.

        • jp3

          I never said that money will fix everything but if you think our HISTORICALLY BAD OF production couldn’t have been significantly better by spending a bit more you’re kidding yourself. Believe it or not there were better options out there than Ryan Kalish and Sweeney. How much better would you feel about an OF of Beltran and Corey Hart for about 21 million this year? Yeah I know there is no guarantee they’d have signed but they also signed for short deals, Hart 1 year and Beltran 3 years. I don’t think that would’ve crippled us going forward do you?

          • OlderStyle

            ^ this a hundred times.
            Is this dogmatic adherence to “The Plan” (as interpreted by some internet zealots) truly the only way to go? I have always believed the Cubs could and should build from within and still field competitive teams. Is it really necessary for the Cubs to do a pale imitation of what the Astros are currently doing?

  • Cubs-Win

    How many games has the bullpen given up so far this season?

  • Canadian Cubs Fan

    Ruggiano was playing too deep on the line drive that tied the game. It hung up plenty, and it looked like he was playing no doubles. It was pretty much the same as the ball Valbuena hit to end the game.

    • craigp

      Regardless of where he was playing, he should’ve made that play! And he should’ve made the next one. Apparently the marlins won that deal…
      I’m so pissed they lost today I can’t stand it!!!

  • Darth Ivy

    I hate the cubs so much. F Wrigley. Demolish the shithole. Baseball is the worst sport in the world. Im never watching another game for the rest of my life.

    Now, where’d I put that Jameson?

  • BlameHendry

    If the Cubs had Yankees/Dodgers money, I’d probably be okay with them spending $100 million on the bullpen.

    • Darth Ivy

      Wouldnt matter. Whoever they have on the mound will blow it. Just get out now. Its a good time toface become an Astros or marlins fan

  • willis

    The cubs have no LHP in the bullpen and no closer, so this stuff is going to unfortunately happen, a bunch. I think Strop is just fine as a reliever, but not as a closer. I have more faith in Rondon or Grimm right now, and hopefully soon Rusin and Rosscup will be up as the lefties, and Ramirez and Vizcaino can replace a couple shitty righties. Then you have a pen. Right now it’s ok, but not good enough to close out games that should be won.

    • Canadian Cubs Fan

      I hear what you’re saying, but Kyle Freakin’ Farnsworth had a 2-run save the other night. A league average closer should be able to get a 3-run save more often than not, especially facing the bottom 3rd of the order.

      • Brocktoon

        Lots your opinion that Strop would blow more than half of his 3 run save opps?

        • Brocktoon

          *it’s

        • Canadian Cubs Fan

          I think he would likely hold onto 7 or 8 out of 10 3-run leads. Just not today.

          • Jason P

            I would sure hope more than that.

          • Brocktoon

            Save conversion rate is ~67% league wide which would include blown holds and obviously 1 and 2 run saves. If a pitcher could only hold 7 out of 10 3 run leads he wouldn’t be in the majors. He wouldn’t even be in AAA you’re talking best case scenario a guy with a RA in the 8s

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

            Historically, the failure rate on 3-run saves has been around 4%.

            This holds true regardless of the talent of the pitcher.

            • DarthHater

              Well, somebody has to be accountable, dammit!

            • Mike

              So I would have a 4% chance of converting a 3-run save? Gonna call BS on that one. 100% chance that they all get blown.

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

                Well you are not someone who is capable enough to be in a MLB bullpen.

                • Mike

                  Well, neither is half of the Cubs bullpen.

    • Pat

      I agree about Strop in the closer role, but do you really want to burn through three closers before the end of April? The good thing is, the only free agents are Veras and Wright (if you start demoting/cutting free agents after a few bad games it makes it harder to sign them in the future).

      Mostly I just want some guys with low walk rates in there. Getting hit around is one thing, but giving up walks regularly is the last thing you want in a bullpen guy.

      • baldtaxguy

        “The good thing is, the only free agents are Veras and Wright (if you start demoting/cutting free agents after a few bad games it makes it harder to sign them in the future).”

        Sorry, but bullshit. Veras being demoted from closing, or even cut from the team, is more about him sucking. I would think that Veras blowing 25 saves during the year “because the Cubs signed him as a closer free agent” would make other FA’s run for the hills. A closer does not have the luxury of having “a few bad games” like every one Veras has had.

        There are other reasons the Cubs will have problems signing future free agents – but cutting/trading the Marmols and Veras’ when they are not performing the job they were hired to perform is not one of them.

        • Brocktoon

          This can be our new excuse. We didn’t miss out on Masterson because we failed to offer him the most money nor was it that we have shown no signs of being a competitive ball club, it’s that we released Jose Veras in July

  • willis

    I think before long, the pen will be Strop, Grimm, Rondon, Ramirez, Vizcaino, Rusin, Rosscup. That’s a hell of a lot of talent. For now we’ll have to deal with the mess that it is.

    • Darth Ivy

      Yep, that’s a lot of talent that’s going to blow games

  • RWakild

    I think Ruggiano should have caught the game tying hit. It seems like it hung up forever. Wonder if his hamstring hurt on that play he looked slow

  • JM

    THIS is the exact kind of game that will keep Jeff S from wanting to resign with the Cubs. He may love the city and the idea of winning in Chicago and blah, blah, blah, I just see the losing as too much for him to handle.

  • DarthHater

    Okay, everybody. You want to know who’s really to blame for this loss? See below:

    hansman
    April 23, 2014 at 4:14 pm | Permalink | Reply
    RUGGIANO GOES YARD!!!!!!

    Cubs socking it to the D-Backs.

    WHO’S THE WORSE TEAM NOW

    • Darth Ivy

      Let’s put him on a 2 day suspension from cheeseburgers

      • DarthHater

        That would be cruel and unusual punishment.

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

      To be fair…at that point the answer was D-Backs.

      But I don’t expect you to be fair.

      • DarthHater

        “But I don’t expect you to be fair.”

        Hey, now, who just spoke out in favor of not suspending you from cheeseburgers?

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

          You just said it would be cruel and unusual punishment.

          Coming from a Sith Lord it’s a resounding endorsement.

          • DarthHater

            Curses! My ruse has been foiled!

  • HislersHero

    So, how is everybody doing today?

  • Kenster

    Depending on the severity of Ruggiano’s injury I wouldn’t be surprised if the FO held off on putting him on the DL for a few days and instead wait until the activate Arrieta and go with a 13 man pitching staff until hes back off the DL. I think they are plenty versatile to last with 12 hitters for the time being. Even though I would much rather see a Josh Vitters or even Chris Valaika (whos crushing AAA right now) be called up right away.

    • http://BN Sacko

      My thoughts that if they do bring up a position player this could be Ruggs last game as a Cub.
      As who ever comes up may not be sent back down.

    • JCubs79

      I actually wouldn’t be surprised to see the FO force Ruggiano to play, so they can make sure that we still have another easy out int the lineup. Gotta keep the tank job going and that fits the FO’s MO.

      • baldtaxguy

        I have not read the entire comments yet this morning, but this has my vote as the most douche-worthy. Congrats.

    • Brocktoon

      If that were the case they wouldn’t waste that roster spot in the interim. They’d call up Vitters/Szczur/Rosscup for 3 days then send them down when Arrieta’s spot came up.

  • waffle

    looked like a real baseball team for most of that game

    Walks, bloody walks. If you walk the leadoff batter as a reliever you should have something very very VERY bad done to you.

  • Espy

    This one is hard to take. I go from a feeling of euphoria to a now ruining my day feeling.
    My question is why in the heck did he not leave Rondon in to at least start the 9th??!! Rondon threw a total of 6 PITCHES and should have been given the opportunity to finish the game. We don’t have a designated closer anyway and he has been our best, so you go with your best there. This “8th inning guy, and 9th inning guy” mentality has to stop. Just win the game!!!!

    • http://BleacherNation blewett

      This makes too much sense.

    • Brocktoon

      Because likely in his head, RR had his designated closer and it was Strop. Looking at the usage patterns since Veras was demoted it seems he’s been angling for Strop to be the guy the entire time.

  • http://bleachernation.com woody

    On the bright side Barney looked pretty good again. Would somebody please give us a prospect for him. I thought Valaika looked pretty good in ST. Unfortunately the best guys don’t make it becuse we have guys that are playing badly that have guaranteed contracts and can’t be sent down. I am a real fan of Barney, but if they can’t get a return for him then they should release him so he can move on with his career. And on the MiLB side those Smokies are kicking ass and taking names. I wouldn’t be surprised if they could beat the I- cubs in a head to head matchup.

    • craigp

      A real fan of Barney? Congrats….

  • 5412

    Hi,

    Guys lets separate things out here. Strop came in and gave up a single. Next pitch he throws is a perfect DP ball and gets booted. Then another DP ball hits the base and goes for a hit.

    That would rattle any pitcher, particularly a kid.

    As far as the front office, they hired the guy from Japan or Korea and he blows out his arm. They hire Veras who did not look that bad on paper and he can’t find the plate. Look closely and it is the fact his ball is moving all over the place and he can’t control it.

    Visciano is throwing darts in Daytona and hopefully will be our closer soon.

    It is one thing to say the front office made some choices and had some bad luck along the way. It is quite another to say they are not trying.

    If either one of those tailor made double play balls gets turned we would have won, it is just like Pinella used to say…..just a Cubbie occourance.

    Personally, the veins in my neck were popping out and I thought my head would explode. I am as angry and frustrated as I have ever been. For two years the Dodgers have tried to sign all the good players with their new TV money and I don’t see the dynasty just yet.

    No point in getting pissed at God, he has a lot more things to look after than a baseball team.

    regards,
    5412

    • Espy

      But he walked his first batter on 4 pitches, and ended up walking two in the inning. Starting off that way is a recipe for disaster.

    • http://fullcount1544.blogspot.com FullCountTommy

      I get this line of thinking, but starting your appearance with 7 straight balls is never a good thing. On the ball Castro booted, Campana was running and there was no way there were turning two. The ball that hit the bag, Barney was diving before it hit the bag, and there was no way they were turning two on that one either. Castro has to get one there and yes that’s a bad break with the ball hitting the bag, but bottom line is Strop has to come in throwing strikes.

  • DarthHater

    Well, the FCC just killed the internet today. So it enjoy it while you can, folks.

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

      It’s an un-regulatable wild expanse of unfettered capitalism.

      Governments usually hate those kinds of things.

      • DarthHater

        You mean like government’s hatred of the railroads during the settlement of the American West?

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

          $$$

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

          Actually, now that I have actually read about what the FCC did, the main drawback I see is mega-companies sucking up all the bandwidth.

          From the WaPo:

          “The FCC said new rules will ban Internet service providers such as Verizon and Time Warner Cable from blocking Web sites or charging a firm like Netflix more for faster and smoother delivery of content.”

          Maybe I am missing something? Doesn’t seem to be a big issue.

          • DarthHater

            Well, I didn’t actually bother gathering any facts before I posted my comment. Cuz, it’s like, my opinion, man. :-P

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

              Wha? No one EVER does that on the internet…especially not me.

              • DarthHater

                But see? By making an unsupported, exaggerated assertion, I got you to go do the research for me. Thanks, man! :-D

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

                  God.Damn.Sith.

                  • DarthHater

                    Yea, but it turns out you did shitty, worthless research. So I guess you won after all. :-P
                    [img]https://farm4.staticflickr.com/3682/11986320713_1ba6c3a16f_m.jpg[/img]

          • TWC

            “Maybe I am missing something? Doesn’t seem to be a big issue.”

            But the new rules, as I understand them, allow firm to *pay* ISPs to prioritize the firms’ content.

            The real trouble here is that the “pipes” are only so big; there’s only so much bandwidth. Firms sitting on large capital can squeeze out smaller ISPs (who have to buy bandwidth from the mega telecoms who own all of it).

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

              Ahh…what I had read earlier was the way it was before.

          • http://www.bleachernation.com Luke

            Actually, Hans, I think you’re a little optmistic on this one.

            Per http://arstechnica.com/tech-policy/2014/04/net-neutrality-dead-for-good-fcc-may-endorse-pay-for-play-deals/

            The FCC is proposing to allow individual content providers to enter negotiations for preferential treatment over the last mile connection to the home. There will be a “no blocking” requirement, but the language governing that requirement is extremely vague.

            If you’re an optimist, then you can expect your Netflix bill to go up, your MLB.TV price to go up, and to pay more for gaming services such as PSN+ as these services will likely be all but required to pay up for the preferrential treatment in order to stay competitive with other offerings. And they will of course pass those costs on to consumers.

            If you’re a pessimist, you’ll imagine a world in which all internet performance is restricted to, say, the equivalent of a 2G cell phone network as the minimum “no-blocking” standard, and only those content providers who pay up will be allowed to deliver content at normal speeds. In that world, if Bleachernation.com doesnt’ bribe every internet company through which it is read, then it could restricted into artificially long loading times while competing outlets, ESPN for example, who do pay up are allowed to take full advantage of broadband internet speeds. Under the rules as written, that scenario looks entirely legal.

            One could argue that the FCC would never allow such blatantly anti-consumer minimum standards to be applied, but I think if you’ll check the resumes of the FCC commissioners you’ll find that many or all of them used to be high level executives for the broadband and network companies or for the lobbyist groups who work on behalf of those companies, and that the heads of the lobbying firms in turn used to work for the FCC. I’m not sure who speaks for the consumer on the FCC as structured, but I’m still looking.

            See http://arstechnica.com/tech-policy/2014/04/washingtons-revolving-door-cellular-lobby-and-fcc-have-traded-leaders/ for examples of the lobbyist, FCC connections.

            This looks very bad to me. Right now, I don’t see any kind of a positive here.

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

              Ya, I didn’t date check the article I read before. Took the top respectable site on the Google News and ran with it.

              • TWC

                F’in internet, man!

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

                  SEE The death of net neutrality strikes its first victim.

                  Next thing you know, DieHard will start making sense.

                  • http://www.teamfums.org MichiganGoat

                    If he’s not dead has he even been around?

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

              It makes some sense, though. If I want to use more data, I have to pay more.If I want to use more of anything, I have to pay more.

              I think it could be abused and I don’t like their ability to carte blanche block websites (especially if the FCC heads are dominated by “New Media” types).

              In the end, I prefer a wild-west style internet where everything flows freely and it is ridiculously easy to start anything you want.

              It’s an election year so changing the Federal law would be easy enough. Basically, consumers need to start lighting up Congressmen and Senator’s phone lines. I think I’d like to see the internet considered a utility like electricity. I can have any amount available that I need, I just pay for it.

              I understand limited bandwidth, is that hurdle as simple as installing more tubes?

              • http://www.bleachernation.com Luke

                The current President acted as if he was the most committed to a free and open Internet of any politician in history. He campaigned on it. He promised it. He used it to get elected.

                And he placed a big media lobbyist in charge of the FCC. Apparently, when it came to actually doing something, he didn’t care for an open Internet after all.

                I’m all in favor of the “use more, pay more” concept. In fact, in many areas it is already in place. I have a data cap on my cable modem connection, for instance, and if I go over that cap I pay more data.

                The problem with my provider also charging providers to access me is that I am already paying for that access. I pay my cable company for access to, among other things, Netflix. My cable company will now get to extort money from Netflix to access me over the connection I’m already paying for (the last mile), or will get to artificially restrict my access to Netflix if Netflix doesn’t pay.

                I’m not sure how that makes sense for anyone but my ISP.

                Of course this would not be a problem if we had a competitive market in which I could pick the ISP with the best policies and practices. But we don’t, and I can’t.

                Despite the press releases issued by the major companies in which they claim to demonstrate that virtually everyone in America has multiple high quality, high speed broadband internet providers competing fiercely for their contracts, the reality is similar to mine. I can pay the cable company that has been provided a monopoly in my region, or I can pay for a vastly inferior service at a higher cost via an outdated DSL network, or I can rely on a cell phone network connection that is unreliable in poor weather conditions and has extremely low data caps, or I can pay a small fortune for a high latency satellite connection.

                I suppose that is competition in the barest, most basic sense of the word, but in reality it isn’t. If I want an internet connection that allows me to do my job via VPN when required, for example, I have precisely one choice.

                And the major internet companies have been lobbying very hard to pass legislation in a large number of states that would ban cities and towns from ever developing any form of public fiber based internet service as a utility, even when approved by referendum. Many of these laws have now passed.

                In short, the system of sheltered regional monopolies is likely to continue without any new entrants becoming able to gain enough traction in the market to force any sort of a realistic change. Whatever policies my cable modem provider chooses to impose I must live with or relocate out of the geographic area of that company’s regional monopoly.

                If that company decides that MiLB.TV needs to pay up to be allowed to stream video to me at more than one frame a second (or whatever minimum the FCC allows), and MiLB.TV chooses not to do it, then I get deal with the consequences without any plausible recourse whatsoever.

                I still can’t find a silver lining here. This is an awful, awful proposed set of rules that will have absolutely no conceivable benefits for consumers.

                • Patrick W.

                  Going back to the old Internet Super Highway analogy, the proposed rules are akin to having a speed limit everyone has to follow unless they’re on their way to McDonald’s.

                  If this is enacted it’s great for established companies but you can forget about ever seeing a new Amazon or Netflix. They’ve won.

                  • Patrick W.

                    (The opinions expressed here are not the expressed opinions of my employer)

                    • TWC

                      Hey, Paddy, why would the My Little Pony Superstore care what you write on some internet blog?

                  • http://www.bleachernation.com Luke

                    It’s not even great for established companies, and I suspect it will negatively impact Netflix and possibly push Amazon out of video altogether given they are already profitable in other areas.

                    Take the hypothetical case of Brettcom.

                    Brettcom offers a video streaming services that competes with Netflix. Brettcom controls the network through which both their service and their competition will be streamed. Brettcom dictates what level of connection will allowed to their consumers without content providers paying special fees, and Brettcom controls the size of those fees.

                    Now. Why in the world would Brettcom not set the fees to be just high enough Netflix refuses to pay, then make sure Netflix’s service on their network degrades enough that the customers no longer enjoy using it, and then begin heavily marketing their own alternative as a direct and better competitor to Netflix?

                    Hint – they would. It’s already happening. Just replace Brettcom with AT&T and voila.

                    http://arstechnica.com/business/2014/04/netflix-still-sucks-on-att-and-now-att-plans-to-offer-netflix-clone/

                    • Patrick W.

                      I can’t say this for certain but I think Amazon’s shopping traffic (109MM unique visitors in December) is important enough to them to ante up.

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

                      Couldn’t Brettcom have a close relationship with Luke Bank and do the same thing to Luke Bank’s closest competitor, Joe Bank? Hindering their ability to compete/expand in a certain region?

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

                      “I can’t say this for certain but I think Amazon’s shopping traffic (109MM unique visitors in December) is important enough to them to ante up.”

                      Eh…if Amazon decides that it isn’t worth the hassle or wants to fight the good fight and refuses to play the game, they’d pull the plug pretty quickly.

                      Florida insurance was getting so ridiculously difficult to handle a few years back that State Farm was planning on pulling out of Florida all together.

                      I’ve heard scuttlebutt that tougher banking regulations in California got nixed because a big time bank threatened they couldn’t do business there with them in place (although less stringent regulations were passed).

                    • Patrick W.

                      Maybe Amazon will just launch their own satellite and offer DSL for free to Prime customers.

                    • http://www.bleachernation.com Luke

                      Throttling Amazon.com would be tough. Throttling Amazon’s video service, though, I can certainly see them trying.

                      To the Bank question – yes and no. If LukeBank was like Ally and was reliant almost entirely on the internet to access customers, maybe. Under the “no blocking” rule, though, the worst they could do is make sure that JoeBank loads faster than LukeBank, and that may or not be enough to sway consumers.

                      The scenario I sketched out earlier – in which all Internet traffic on the last mile is throttled to a fixed bandwidth regardless of what bandwidth the consumer is paying for (or maybe slightly leveled from slow to kinda slow based on customer packages), and any provider who pays the bribes is promoted to the fast lane strikes me as very likely unless the FCC has some additional clauses up their sleeve that haven’t been revealed yet.

                      This morning I didn’t think we had anything to worry about, but I’ll go to bed tonight strongly suspecting that we are just a few years, at most, from the day when Bleachernation loads markedly slower on all our devices as compared to FanSided or SBNation sites because Brett doesn’t have the corporate muscle to pay up.

                      Maybe the FCC will reveal some additional clauses in the morning that will make this appear to be less of a complete disaster of a proposal. Maybe a SOPA style public reaction will put a stop to it. Maybe the White House or Congress will step in and force out the current FCC and replace them with people who have no prior connection to the industry they are supposed to regulate.

                      Maybe a magic pony will bring me a pot of gold a bottomless bag of chocolate cookies that I can munch on as I’m whisked away to an alternate reality in which Wood and Prior never had health issues and Hee Seop Choi became a Hall of Famer.

                      Funny which of those scenarios I find the most likely.

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

                      “Maybe a SOPA style public reaction will put a stop to it.”

                      Eh (and this isn’t political, just an observation), if the immigration fight has taught me anything, it’s that politicians while continue to ram something down the public’s throat long enough until the vocal minority tires and STFU.

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

                      An exciting new world of technology and the government manages to screw it all up.

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

                    I would be in favor of any law that allows me to reach hamburgers at Ludicrus Speed.

                    Ok, I understand this better. It really does sound awful, just God Awful.

                    My severe contempt for lobbyists grows.

                • TWC

                  Luke, I cannot disagree with a word you said, but I’d like to bring it back to one of Joe’s comments:

                  “In the end, I prefer a wild-west style internet where everything flows freely and it is ridiculously easy to start anything you want.”

                  That’s what the internet *was*, man! That’s why our global economy is what it is right now! I mean, for better or worse, the internet is everything and everywhere and everything. And if these proposed Net Neutrality rules actually go into effect, things will contract. The new sheriffs are gonna rule the town for a looooong time, or, at least, until the next Internet arises. (C’mon, DARPA, whaddya got for us?)

              • Cubbie Blues

                It may take a while, but at least it appears they are working on it.

                [img]http://web.mta.info/nyct/service/7Line2014/images/3_31_14/09_large.jpg[/img]

  • JL82

    How in the hell is Dempster or Mathews a Cubs Legend. Seriously they should have brought in Mark Grace and Kerry Wood

  • kj1

    Buffet not buying minority interest, can’t say I blame him.

    • DarthHater

      Well, perhaps he’d be interested in just giving us a billion dollars, anyway? He probably wouldn’t miss it that much.

    • Pat

      The problem is, that like the first time they tried to sell minority shares, they are trying to sell non-voting stock. Nobody spends that kind of money on second class securities.

  • Medicos

    Obviously a tough loss today. The great thing about the MLB is that there will be another game in 18 hours. Bonifacio should get some player -of-the-month votes. There were a number of excellent defensive plays by the infielders. Sitting a few rows back of the DBacks’ dugout you could tell their hitters really weren’t getting such great swings vs Strop. Gave up 4 runs. Only 1 earned run. Once he gets better control of his pitches, he should be a decent closer. A late inning of bullpen Russell-Grimm-Strop-Rondon-Parker should be able to do the job. An SD scout was checking out Gold Glove winner Darwin Barney.

  • craigp

    Ship him for BP balls. 2 dozen

  • cubmig

    Memo to Theo&CO:

    We had to put our cat down because he was puking all over the place. Your guys are shitting everywhere and on everyone —-the field, the game, the fans— what do you think that deserves?

    Do something, damn it!

    • 70’s Cub

      If the Cubs have better bullpen talent down in the minors now would be a good f-ing time to bring them up at this rate wait till next year starts in one week! Some say calling for action is starting a shit parade on the FO getting your ass eliminated this early sucks especially for old time Cub fans like my 88-85 year old parents they of course don’t complain, still does not make it right. After 2 years it is time for the Cubs to quit hiding these guys bring them up. Today after being lucky enough to be leading by 3 runs with only 5 hits the 9th inning bullpen can’t throw strikes w/a 3 run lead. I find it reasonable to expect this type of young bullpen player can get it right by going back down to AAA and being recalled after the Allstar break. I don’t feel ashamed to expect some tough love and directional control from this FO please send a strong organizational message throw strike one!

    • DarthHater

      This is a perfect example of the kind of reasoned, mature, and articulate analysis of the current situation that absolutely does not deserve to be jumped on with a lot of sarcastic, name-calling retorts. Well done.

      • baldtaxguy

        And to you, well done… as well. Your comments have the power of making me laugh out loud (without rolling on the floor). I’m feeling closer to the dark side.

  • http://BleacherNation blewett

    Darwin Barney for Nick Hundley. Makes sense for both teams. Gyorko is scuffling on offense and is horrible defensively. Pads could use a defensive 2B. Hundley would be quite an upgrade from Baker and would give us two decent catchers. Plus it would free some our glut at middle infield.

  • Ron

    Well that sucked. Glad I spent the day with the kiddos on a school field trip. On another note did anyone see Corey Blacks line 6 innings no hits 3 walks and 8 strikeouts?

    • Medicos

      Hey Ron—Your class might have done a better job closing against the DBacks today. You should plan a school field trip to the Friendly Confines in May so the boys could observe how not to execute on a ball field.

Bleacher Nation Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. Bleacher Nation is a private media site, and it is not affiliated in any way with Major League Baseball or the Chicago Cubs. Neither MLB nor the Chicago Cubs have endorsed, supported, directed, or participated in the creation of the content at this site, or in the creation of the site itself. It's just a media site that happens to cover the Chicago Cubs.

Bleacher Nation is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.

Google+