javier baez cubs gloveThe conversation in the comments the last few days about green tea has been fascinating. I just bought a box of Lipton green tea and went at it, but I didn’t really know what I was doing or how many varieties there are or how many ways to prepare it. For now, I’m keeping things very simple – heat up cup of water, stick in bag, let it sit for a bit, drink – but I’m going to check out many of the things you folks discussed.

One thing I don’t know, but have been afraid to ask for fear of breaking the Internet’s limit on people shouting PHRASING! at you … are you supposed to squeeze the teabag out at the end, into your cup? Am I wasting precious flavor/good stuff if I don’t?

And as for the young folks who are readers: welcome to your future, where you’ll often talk about things like green tea.

  • I very much like hearing this:

  • That shouldn’t be surprising, as we know that Baez is incredibly athletic and instinctive on the field already, and we also know that he was getting praise for his ball-shagging ability in the outfield back when he was Iowa (though it’s always hard to know how that would actually translate in-game). We’ve already seen that Baez has the ability to play above-average defense at second and third base, neither of which was his natural defensive home (shortstop). Knowing that he can also play shortstop well, and in the outfield, makes him all the more valuable to carry on the big league roster, even if the bat isn’t quite there. Further, having Baez able to play adequately or better in center field, specifically, could allow the Cubs to more comfortably construct their bench without having to force a right-handed hitting center fielder onto it.


  • I tend to think it’s going to be hard to know before Spring Training just how well Baez could handle center field if he had to be out there for an extended time, and the Cubs might have to make a decision on adding another outfielder long before then, so I still wouldn’t bank on Baez being considered the primary center field back-up heading into the season. Still, it’s nice to know that the early reviews are positive, and to know that the roster can be even more versatile no matter what.
  • I hope you’ve heard of the TOOTBLAN. I hope you see it all the time when a baserunner does something stupid and gets thrown out. But did you know that it was started by a Cubs blogger back in 2008? Did you know that Ryan Theriot was the predicate for the term? You can learn these things in the TOOTBLAN’s oral history (in which I said some things, too).
  • With Ken Griffey, Jr. elected (easily) to the Hall of Fame, we get to wonder which hat he’ll wear when he goes in – Mariners, right? But, hey, who cares about that? What I really want to know is whether the hat can be backwards … and the answer is maybe!


  • Also, a touching off-the-field story on Griffey. And a look at how great he was until age 30, with a really rough visual on just how good he was and how it all fell off.
  • Jeff Sullivan is polling fans on what they think of their team’s ownership. My guess is Cubs fan responses will be fundamentally different now than they would have been a year and a half ago (mine would have been the same (dusts off shoulder)).
  • Over at Baseball is Fun, Bartolo Colon is getting ready for the season with ropes. Big ropes.
  • Wow, those are some extremely bold Cubs leggings. Wonder if I can pull them off at the Cubs Convention …

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