Tagged: Andres Blanco

Three in a Row!

The comeback kids do it again!

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                               Phil Velasquez/Chicago Tribune / June 20, 2009
For the third straight game the Cubs come back to claim a walk off victory.  Thursday, they erased a 5-1 deficit to beat the White Sox 6-5.  On Friday, they erased a 7-0 deficit and beat the Indians 8-7.  Yesterday, it was only a 5-4 deficit in the 13th inning.  It’s nice to see a little fight from the Men in Blue.  However, let’s hope our starting pitching isn’t going into the tank while the offense improves.
The one constant in each of these three comebacks has been Derrek Lee who is red hot.  Lee has homered four times in his last three games and has a 17 game hitting streak.  Finally.  A 17 game hitting streak?  Hmm, that means Gerald Perry was the hitting coach for at least 13 of those games.
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                     Phil Velasquez/Chicago Tribune / June 20, 2009
Another constant has been the emergenge of Andres Blanco as a major contributer in the Cubs late inning offense.
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The final constant has been Kerry Wood, the Indians bullpen, and the Indians infield defense. Oh, my God!  How must Eric Wedge feel know that you’ve got a seven run lead and you will likely lose the game?  It’s not just against the Cubs.  The Indians blew two five run leads in a game earlier this week versus the Brewers.  The 15-12 loss was capped off by a Prince Fielder grand slam.  That game, and the last two against the Cubs, are the signature games of the Indians 2009 season.  They tell exactly what has gone wrong for them.  The theme song of the 2009 Indians should be “Give it Away” by the Red Hot Chili Peppers.

O.K., Cubbies, you’re facing Jeremy Sowers today.  Sowers is 1-4 with a 5.14 ERA and has gotten to the sixth inning only once in his last seven starts.  There should be no need for a comeback win today.  Knock him out early.
Happy Father’s Day to all the Dads out there!
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The Curse of Being a Fan

I’m sorry I haven’t posted in a few days, but I’ve just been totally consumed by the Lakers.  Since they clinched last Friday, I’ve been pretty much thinking and worrying day and night about how they’re going to win this title.  They have to win.  Well, they rewarded me tonight with their second best effort of the playoffs (the closeout of Denver was still more dominating).  Apparently, the Lakers are interested again, which is good for me because I can at least sleep good the next couple of nights.  I know it’s silly, but those of you that are obsessive about your teams will understand.  I think.  One not so humorous thing about tonight.  Well, it’s something I’m sure we’ll look back and laugh about.  Tonight is the eve of our fourth anniversary, the fruit anniversary.  My wife went out and got her hair done.  Our son was staying with my parents today, so I went to pick him up and take him home.  They live 40 miles from us, so I did not get home until the player introductions for the game.  My son was cute, because he knew Kobe right away (I’ve taught him well).  Well, when I came in and put my son down, I became consumed with the game and did not notice my wife’s hair or make a comment about it. (She looked beautiful, but then again she always does).  Finally, when the Lakers started to open it up in the second quarter, I noticed.  I apologized profusely.  My wife understood.  She blamed Kobe.  I am so sorry, honey.  I did bring home a dozen roses, however.  And I did plan a great outing on Saturday to celebrate.  It still doesn’t excuse it, though.  Why do we get so consumed by a game on TV played far away by people who don’t know us?  It’s the curse of being a fan.

The Lakers success has taken some of my attention away from the Cubs.  Right now, this may not be a bad thing.  Where do I begin?  Let’s recap the rain shortened series against the Braves.
The still suspended Carlos Zambrano misses the team flight to Atlanta on Monday.  Way to go, Carlos.  Lou said he gave him a talking to.  Big Z was supposed to pitch today, but that game was rained out.  He’ll go tomorrow in Cincinnati instead.  I have a bad feeling about that.
Milton Bradley got hurt again.  Yawn.  However, the Cubs just call him day to day again and won’t put him on the DL.  They can’t say when he’ll play, though.  Are they serious?  You know, I would not care if they just cut him and ate the two years remaining on his contract.  There is a silver lining to his injury.  It means Reed Johnson will get to play more.  The Cubs are better with Reed Johnson then they are with Milton.
With the injury to Ramirez and the injury of the week to Bradley and others, the Cubs are becoming a team of Triple A players.  Andres Blanco, Bobby Scales, Jake Fox.  These guys aren’t young, either.  Scales is 31, Fox is 27, Blanco is 25.  Micah Hoffpauir is 29.  I admit, I liked the Bobby Scales story, but if the Cubs are going to depend on these three guys for a long stretch of time, they are not winning the division.  To remain in the minors until your 29 or 30 tells me there are some fatal flaws to your game, otherwise they’d be up sooner.  The other teams will figure the flaw out and exploit it.
Carlos Marmol and Kevin Gregg turned in a tag team effort to blow Tuesday night’s game.  Poor Randy Wells had a no hitter into the seventh inning and left leading 5-0.  Marmol gives up 3 runs in the eighth and Gregg gives up two in the ninth to force a sure win into extra innings.  In the twelfth, Heilman provided the cherry on top by giving up the winning run.
The next night, the Cubs blew a 2-0 lead and had the game go into extra innings.  Fortunately, they won this game to stay one game over .500.
Now the Cubs start a big series with the Reds, who are a game ahead of them.  Now would be a good time to start a winning streak.  OK, Big Z, your the ace.  Go and pitch like one.