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GEORGE CASTLE: Shark, Theo should have continued swimming together

GEORGE CASTLE: Shark, Theo should have continued swimming together

CHICAGO | Smart alecks will suggest Jeff Samardzija infected his new team, the Oakland Athletics, with the “Strain” of Cubbie Occurrences that suck the life out of a club through massive collapses.

September 10, 2014 8:30 pm
GEORGE CASTLE: Time to pay or trade The Shark

GEORGE CASTLE: Time to pay or trade The Shark

CHICAGO | Pay him or trade him.

January 19, 2014 6:45 pm Photos

Photos

Future Te'os ought to listen to a wizened Samardzija

Future Te'os ought to listen to a wizened Samardzija

CHICAGO | The dead of winter should be a prime time for Jeff Samardzija to indulge in his second-best talent: talking about baseball.

January 20, 2013 6:47 pm Photos

Photos

Cubs duel Red Sox in ’03 World Series in ‘Alou Makes the Catch’

Cubs duel Red Sox in ’03 World Series in ‘Alou Makes the Catch’

Times baseball writer George Castle’s 11th book presents 10 “What if’s” in Cubs history. “Alou Makes the Catch: An Alternative History of the Chicago Cubs” plays off real persons and events to show how the star-crossed team’s championship drought might have been broken on several occasions s…

December 23, 2012 10:19 pm Photos

Photos

GEORGE CASTLE: Risking more losing culture means rebuilding must be hastened

As out-of-towners with no institutional memory, Theo Epstein and Jed Hoyer surely don’t know how the past two 100-loss Cubs teams revived on a dime and contended into August the following season.

October 03, 2012 6:12 pm

GEORGE CASTLE: Is ‘Shark’ a Cubs leader? Teammate says probably

Turns out Andre Dawson wasn’t talking out of unlit regions.

September 19, 2012 10:00 pm

GEORGE CASTLE ON THE CUBS: How to survive and stay sane amid 100 losses

Seize the opportunity.

September 06, 2012 7:00 pm
GEORGE CASTLE ON THE CUBS: Darwin Barney must be his own man

GEORGE CASTLE ON THE CUBS: Darwin Barney must be his own man

Darwin Barney hasn’t heard of Kenny Hubbs and Glenn Beckert, the two Cubs second baseman to have won Gold Gloves prior to Ryne Sandberg.

August 29, 2012 6:22 pm

GEORGE CASTLE: ‘Shark,’ Prior like 2 ships passing in night

CHICAGO | Larry Rothschild’s busy enough coaching the New York Yankees’ pitching staff.

August 20, 2012 10:00 pm

GEORGE CASTLE: Theo-Jed still in Rebuilding 101 class

Beware of young pitchers traded near the deadline by the Atlanta Braves.

August 01, 2012 10:00 pm

GEORGE CASTLE: Ignorance of history most galling aspect of Dempster trade talks

There’s a sub-culture in media and among some fans that knowledge of baseball history is geeky or even abnormal.

July 25, 2012 4:30 pm

GEORGE CASTLE: Pitching must top off rebuilding process: A-Ram

The man who almost single-handedly won the last Cubs postseason victory has the right to analyze what the North Siders need to finally win another one, after nine consecutive losses.

July 18, 2012 6:32 pm
Will Epstein be as patient as Cubs fans are asked to be?

Will Epstein be as patient as Cubs fans are asked to be?

Theo Epstein is asking Cubs fans to suffer a few more years, taking the proverbial loss to make the long-term gain.

July 11, 2012 7:34 pm
GEORGE CASTLE: Players make room for a Cinderella All-Star

GEORGE CASTLE: Players make room for a Cinderella All-Star

Since major-league players put on their pants one leg at a time like the 99-percenters they aren’t at payday, suffice to say they’re subject to the same emotionalism as the rest of us.

July 04, 2012 11:30 pm
GEORGE CASTLE: Samardzija won’t employ hindsight to wonder ‘what if?’

GEORGE CASTLE: Samardzija won’t employ hindsight to wonder ‘what if?’

Jeff Samardzija pitches tonight indoors away from the Phoenix heat, charged with dual mundane tasks: stopping another Cubs loss from mushrooming into 2012’s umpteenth mega-skid and getting his 5-5 record above .500.

June 21, 2012 6:00 pm
GEORGE CASTLE: Cubs kids need education on a crazy title drought

GEORGE CASTLE: Cubs kids need education on a crazy title drought

“You couldn’t deny it in Boston, you can’t deny it in Chicago. It is the elephant in the room, so to speak.”

June 13, 2012 10:00 pm

Lessons from Theo’s draft history: Success is hardly assured

It’s no cliché: If you don’t learn from history, you’ll be badly misinformed – or condemned to repeat its mistakes.

June 06, 2012 8:35 pm

Theo’s program will truly arrive if he can draft big boppers

In all his preparation for next week’s amateur draft, Theo Epstein ought to have put aside his sabermetrics and new-age strategies, looked outside his Boston posse and done something old-school: make a phone call.

May 30, 2012 8:45 pm

There’s still plenty of room for two-way loyalty in baseball

There’s no crying in baseball, to be sure, but there’s sure room for some dry-eyed sentiment.

May 23, 2012 9:00 pm
Marmol tried so hard in 9th, he ends up losing it all

Marmol tried so hard in 9th, he ends up losing it all

Baseball is chock full of boom-and-bust stories.

May 16, 2012 7:15 pm
Mainieri: What if Samardzija had started all along in Cubs system?

Mainieri: What if Samardzija had started all along in Cubs system?

Let’s understand Paul Mainieri completely here.

May 10, 2012 6:32 pm
It's all about Theo's new Cubs Way, not the players, in camp

It's all about Theo's new Cubs Way, not the players, in camp

This is the mulligan Cubs fans wanted to grant their management for decades.

February 23, 2012 10:00 pm Photos

Photos

Top marketable Sox, Cubs at winter meetings

The Sox and Cubs could try trading with each other, but...

December 04, 2011 6:30 pm

Heavy burden lies with Quade's replacement

Into the perpetual merry-go-round of Cubs managers come the first candidates of the Theo Epstein epoch after short-termer Mike Quade was sent packing Wednesday.

November 02, 2011 6:15 pm

GEORGE CASTLE: Producer goes a long way to absolve Bartman

Sounds like Alex Gibney will display a winner, "Catching Hell," to the ESPN audience at 7 p.m. Tuesday.

September 21, 2011 6:30 pm
GEORGE CASTLE: Spectacular Santo statue reminds of HOF's unfinished business

GEORGE CASTLE: Spectacular Santo statue reminds of HOF's unfinished business

CHICAGO | The impact of Ron Santo's statue outside Wrigley Field goes far beyond sculptor Lou Cella's spectacular three-color depiction of the third baseman, standing on one leg and leaning right, ready to fire the ball cross-body to first in his patented 1960s image.

August 10, 2011 8:45 pm
Fukudome exit reminds once more of glorious ‘08 debut

Fukudome exit reminds once more of glorious ‘08 debut

Baseball is chock full of grand entrances that contrast with quiet, anti-climactic exits.

July 28, 2011 5:00 pm

GEORGE CASTLE: Big boppers in pipeline, but barrier is hitting MLB fastball

The 50th anniversary of the rookie-of-the-year season for Billy Williams, the last home-grown Cubs power hitter, was a good time to ask about any power prospects who combine size, strength and swing.

July 22, 2011 8:00 pm Related
GEORGE CASTLE: Next step for Barney is team leader status

GEORGE CASTLE: Next step for Barney is team leader status

If you keep underestimating Darwin Barney, he'll keep surprising you.

July 20, 2011 10:00 pm
GEORGE CASTLE: Flunking Cubs historically bad at All-Star break

GEORGE CASTLE: Flunking Cubs historically bad at All-Star break

It's even worse than it appears. At 37-55, the Cubs deservedly own the second-worst record in baseball. They've flopped in all aspects of baseball, starting with ownership.

July 12, 2011 12:00 am
GEORGE CASTLE: Wrigley should be a fortress for Cubs, but Sox often scale walls

GEORGE CASTLE: Wrigley should be a fortress for Cubs, but Sox often scale walls

CHICAGO | From all the colorful descriptions of Wrigley Field over the years from Ozzie Guillen, you'd think the ol' girl was sports' chamber of horrors.

June 30, 2011 8:00 pm
GEORGE CASTLE: Shark still wants to start, but present and future point to bullpen

GEORGE CASTLE: Shark still wants to start, but present and future point to bullpen

When Valparaiso's Jeff Samardzija arrived at Wrigley Field on Tuesday for the long hours required to handle a day-night doubleheader, he knew his arm had to be as loose as it had been all season.

June 29, 2011 10:00 pm

GEORGE CASTLE : Samardzija wants to start, but bullpen beckons

CHICAGO | When Valparaiso's Jeff Samardzija arrived at Wrigley Field on Tuesday for the long hours required to handle a day-night doubleheader, he knew his arm had to be as loose as it had been all season.

June 29, 2011 9:00 pm
GEORGE CASTLE: No boo-hoo from Dunn on catcalls, lost season

GEORGE CASTLE: No boo-hoo from Dunn on catcalls, lost season

CHICAGO | "Ever been booed?"

June 22, 2011 9:30 pm
GEORGE CASTLE: What a change -- this Cub has ‘arrogance' about his legs

GEORGE CASTLE: What a change -- this Cub has ‘arrogance' about his legs

CHICAGO | When's the last time you heard a Cub use the word "arrogance" about his legs, let alone any part of his baseball ability?

June 21, 2011 10:00 pm

GEORGE CASTLE: Are you listening, Tom Ricketts -- fans will accept youth movement.

If the typical Cubs fan is not put upon enough, then he's got an additional decades-long burden -- he's under-rated.

June 16, 2011 10:00 pm
GEORGE CASTLE: Time for honest ‘state of the Cubs' talk from Ricketts

GEORGE CASTLE: Time for honest ‘state of the Cubs' talk from Ricketts

If you've been to Wrigley Field lately -- and chances are less on such patronage compared to 2007-09 -- then you've had a good chance to run into Cubs chairman Tom Ricketts.

June 01, 2011 10:00 pm
Sleep tight, hitters - ol' lefty Davis tries to defy Cubs history

Sleep tight, hitters - ol' lefty Davis tries to defy Cubs history

CHICAGO | Doug Davis' delivery seems even slower than some of his pitches that dart and barely nip corners, frustrating hitters who aren't already distracted, almost even drugged into 40 winks by his frame-by-frame, unorthodox motion.

May 15, 2011 12:00 am
Crisis management now a must at Wrigley Field

Crisis management now a must at Wrigley Field

CHICAGO | To be a fly on the wall the other day before Cubs chairman Tom Ricketts, team president Crane Kenney and marketing chief Wally Hayward, all adorned in their first-string suits, walked out of the Stadium Club as a group.

May 12, 2011 10:00 pm

GEORGE CASTLE: Cubs’ offensive gears mostly caught in a stuck clutch

CHICAGO | As Cubs fans, you can't adequately count the decades of teeth-gnashing after your heroes got a man to third with none out, and the batter(s) who followed him hit the first pitch right to the third baseman, struck out or popped up to the infield.

May 11, 2011 10:00 pm

GEORGE CASTLE: Theriot chirps, but Cubs fans want strong, silent ‘Big Bird'

CHICAGO | As the former matinée idol of the Cubs, Ryan Theriot can talk a good game as well as act the part.

May 10, 2011 10:00 pm

GEORGE CASTLE: Cubs now have added burden in being Red-faced

CHICAGO | A lot of personalities have had their sticky hands in the Cubs 102-year walk in the championship wilderness.

May 08, 2011 10:00 pm
GEORGE CASTLE: Without reward, Coleman shows his mettle vs. Reds

GEORGE CASTLE: Without reward, Coleman shows his mettle vs. Reds

CHICAGO | Casey Coleman probably went two batters too long.

May 07, 2011 10:00 pm
GEORGE CASTLE: How do you change up a throwback Cubs ‘Rush Street lineup?'

GEORGE CASTLE: How do you change up a throwback Cubs ‘Rush Street lineup?'

CHICAGO | Who should bat where for the Cubs, and what would they do once they're slotted in a particular spot?

May 06, 2011 10:00 pm

GEORGE CASTLE: Does A-Ram have one more vintage year left for Cubs?

CHICAGO | Between 2004 and 2008, Aramis Ramirez operated like clockwork for the Cubs.

April 27, 2011 10:00 pm

GEORGE CASTLE: Jackson asked to develop patience –- and is showing it

CHICAGO | The hype machine for center fielder Brett Jackson is going to start sooner or later.

April 25, 2011 10:00 pm
GEORGE CASTLE: One particular team leader firmly entrenched amid Cubs’ good chemistry

GEORGE CASTLE: One particular team leader firmly entrenched amid Cubs’ good chemistry

CHICAGO | It's hard to detect positive chemistry -- a modern baseball term as common as OBP and RISP -- when a team like the Cubs gets walked all over, as the Los Angeles Dodgers did to them on Friday.

April 22, 2011 10:00 pm

GEORGE CASTLE: Garza one click away from pure dominance, first Cubs win

CHICAGO | He's almost there.

April 20, 2011 10:00 pm
GEORGE CASTLE: Castro has shot at historic top ranking as Cubs kid

GEORGE CASTLE: Castro has shot at historic top ranking as Cubs kid

CHICAGO | I don't know if I'm going out on a limb. You can start sawing off the branch behind me, and if I fall, it will all be on me.

April 18, 2011 10:00 pm
GEORGE CASTLE: Colvin an all-around wonder on a nervous Cubs day

GEORGE CASTLE: Colvin an all-around wonder on a nervous Cubs day

CHICAGO | You'd have a right to be nervous seeing Andrew Cashner walk off the mound in the sixth inning Tuesday and soon dash off to the hospital for an MRI after being diagnosed with "shoulder tightness."

April 05, 2011 10:00 pm
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