Tagged: Ryan Braun

The Villainous Braun

It’s always good to see Ryan Braun look like this after an at bat.
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                       Darren Hauck, Associated Press / May 10, 2009     


Braun is
one Brewer who is starting to rub me the wrong way.  He seems to have an
arrogance about him   When he hits a home run, he throws his bat, runs
around the bases with his arms extended and his tongue sticking out.  If
the Brewers win, he pulls his shirt out of his pants right away and struts
around with an arrogant bravado.  He’s the perfect villain in the Cubs vs.
Brewers rivalry.  We couldn’t contain him Friday, but thankfully we did yesterday.

46809840.jpg     Darren Hauck, Associated Press / May 8, 2009

See what I mean?

Yesterday, the Cub bullpen finally did its job in preserving a 4-2 win in Milwaukee.  Marmol looked shaky again in the 8th, having loaded the bases, but he managed to pitch out of it.  Gregg was actually effective in closing out the ninth.

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                          Darren Hauck,
Associated Press / May 10, 2009     

Sean Marshall turned in another strong outing.  He struggled early, but only gave up two runs.  He really settled down after the rocky start.

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                                  Darren Hauck,
Associated Press / May 10, 2009  

I heard that Piniella feels that fixing the bullpen should be priority number one.  Yeah, no kidding.  The Cubs did call up reliever Jose Ascanio to replace the injured Chad Fox.
Finally, here’s some good news coming out of Cubs camp.  Derrek Lee had an MRI on his neck and it was determined that he will not need to go on the DL and should be back in the lineup during the upcoming home stand.
It’s a good thing that there is no Cubs game tonight, because all eyes in Chicago will be on our beloved Blackhawks as they look to close out the Canucks at the United Center and punch their ticket to the Western Conference Finals.
Hopefully, we’ll see more scenes like these.
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      Darryl Dyck, Associated Press / May 9, 2009

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               Jonathan
Hayward, Associated Press / May 9, 2009  

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                 Jonathan
Hayward, Associated Press / May 9, 2009  

Let’s start the chant now.  “Let’s go Hawks!”  “Let’s go Hawks!”
Photo Credits:

Strange Brew

Right after school yesterday, my friend Packer Pete and I headed straight up I-94 to Milwaukee to catch the Cubs vs. the Brewers.  This is certainly a blossoming rivalry now that both teams are among the better teams in baseball.  Since the Brewers moved to the NL in the 1990’s, these games were just another set of games on the schedule.  After the Cubs near World Series appearance in 2003, tickets to Wrigley Field became harder and harder to get.  So many Cub fans who could not get tickets to Wrigley, started buying up the tickets to Miller Park.  This started the rivalry.  The Brewers were not good at this time, but their fans began to resent the F.I.B.S. that started overrunning their stadium whenever the Cubs came to town.  What’s a F.I.B.?  Well, the “I” stands for Illinois.  The “F” and the “B” stand for two words I can’t print here because kids may be reading this.  Use your imagination.  Thus, the Cubs/Brewers rivalry was based more on Wisconsinites’s disdain for people from Illinois taking over their city and stadium than it was on baseball.  That has changed in the past three years.  The Cubs and Brewers are now rivals in the standings and these games have taken on a real spirited atmosphere.  I always saw the Cubs/Cardinals as a friendly rivalry.  The Cardinal fans knew their team was superior to the Cubs and the Cub fans were just happy to be out at the game and maybe see their Cubbies embarrass the Cardinals a bit.  After the game, everyone would go out together.  Yeah, I don’t see that happening with the Cubs and Brewers.  This rivalry is a lot more jaded.

So it was with this backdrop that we headed up to Miller.  I was sporting my Cubbie gear and Pete was sporting his Brewer gear.  
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He also brought the infamous goat dressed up in a Brewer uniform.  He said he brought it to “curse” the Cubs.  I’ve never heard that before.
DSC04541.jpgSee what Cub fans have to put up with?  
Going into this game, I expected the Cubs to lose.  They were starting Randy Wells, a pitcher they called up from Iowa to replace Zambrano.  Wells made his first start in the majors last night.  He actually pitched well.  He went five scoreless innings.  Sure, he got into a few scrapes, but he managed to induce a double play or something in order to get out of it.  Heck, he pitched better than some of our regular starters have this year.   When Piniella took him out after five and put Guzman in to pitch in the sixth with the Cubs leading 2-0, I told Pete that the Brewers have an excellent chance of winning this game.  Guzman gave up a solo homer to JJ Hardy.  Heilman came in to pitch the eighth.  Perhaps I had a premonition of pending poopiness about to occur in the game, but I decided to go to the restroom and then get something to drink. Yeah, I didn’t actually see the four pitch walk and the two run bomb hit by Ryan Braun.  I could just hear the explosion of the Brewer fans and the ensuing fireworks that rocked Miller Park.  I didn’t need to see this.  I’ve been seeing it all year.  Stupid bullpen.  The scoreboard after the game told the tale.

DSC04567.jpgI do have “Hells Bells” by AC/DC stuck in my head as the Brewers continue the Trevor Hoffman tradition of blasting this entire song when he comes into the game.  

The Brewer fans can gloat.  For one day, at least.
DSC04564.jpgThe goat had nothing to do with it.
Boy, things just keep getting worse for the Cubs.  In the third inning, Aramis Ramirez dove along the third base line after a ball hit by Ryan Braun and apparently injured himself.  From where we were sitting on the first base upper deck side, we couldn’t tell what exactly happened to Ramirez.  Did he get hit in the face with the ball?  Did he land awkwardly on his wrist?  We only saw Theriot sprint up to him and the trainer and Piniella sprint out of the dugout.  Ramirez stayed down for a long time.  They finally got him up and walked him straight into the clubhouse.  Not good.  I’ve always said that Ramirez is the one guy the Cubs could not afford to lose for any lengthy amount of time.  After they got him in the clubhouse, I called my wife to ask her what she saw on T.V.  She said it looked like a shoulder injury.  Sure enough, the news from the Cubs is that Aramis Ramirez separated his left shoulder and will get an MRI today.  He was placed on the DL and will be out 4-6 weeks, at minimum.  Ramirez suffered a similar injury back in 2000 with the Pirates.  He missed six weeks.
I did hear that the Cubs have traded Joey Gathright to the Orioles for Ryan Freel.  Freel will be a much needed utility player for the Cubs.
I enjoy Miller Park.  Here are some more pictures from yesterday’s game.
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The hot dog eventually won.
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It’s times like these that test the mettle of a team.  We’re going to find out a lot about the 2009 Cubs in the next six weeks or so.