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CHICAGO | The dead of winter should be a prime time for Jeff Samardzija to indulge in his second-best talent: talking about baseball.
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…
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.
Turns out Andre Dawson wasn’t talking out of unlit regions.
Seize the opportunity.
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.
CHICAGO | Larry Rothschild’s busy enough coaching the New York Yankees’ pitching staff.
Beware of young pitchers traded near the deadline by the Atlanta Braves.
There’s a sub-culture in media and among some fans that knowledge of baseball history is geeky or even abnormal.
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.
Theo Epstein is asking Cubs fans to suffer a few more years, taking the proverbial loss to make the long-term gain.
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.
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.
“You couldn’t deny it in Boston, you can’t deny it in Chicago. It is the elephant in the room, so to speak.”
It’s no cliché: If you don’t learn from history, you’ll be badly misinformed – or condemned to repeat its mistakes.
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.
There’s no crying in baseball, to be sure, but there’s sure room for some dry-eyed sentiment.
Baseball is chock full of boom-and-bust stories.
Let’s understand Paul Mainieri completely here.
This is the mulligan Cubs fans wanted to grant their management for decades.
The Sox and Cubs could try trading with each other, but...
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.
Sounds like Alex Gibney will display a winner, "Catching Hell," to the ESPN audience at 7 p.m. Tuesday.
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.
Baseball is chock full of grand entrances that contrast with quiet, anti-climactic exits.
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.
If you keep underestimating Darwin Barney, he'll keep surprising you.
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.
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.
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.
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.
CHICAGO | "Ever been booed?"
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?
If the typical Cubs fan is not put upon enough, then he's got an additional decades-long burden -- he's under-rated.
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.
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.
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.
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.
CHICAGO | As the former matinée idol of the Cubs, Ryan Theriot can talk a good game as well as act the part.
CHICAGO | A lot of personalities have had their sticky hands in the Cubs 102-year walk in the championship wilderness.
CHICAGO | Casey Coleman probably went two batters too long.
CHICAGO | Who should bat where for the Cubs, and what would they do once they're slotted in a particular spot?
CHICAGO | Between 2004 and 2008, Aramis Ramirez operated like clockwork for the Cubs.
CHICAGO | The hype machine for center fielder Brett Jackson is going to start sooner or later.
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.
CHICAGO | He's almost there.
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.
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."
CHICAGO | You hoped Carlos Marmol paid attention a bit to Matt Garza's "dozens" of numbers Sunday before the closer was charged with the loss in the Cubs' 5-4 setback to their new nemesis, the Pittsburgh Pirates.
Blake DeWitt was the luckier of the two, in a perverse way.
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