When last we left Chicago Cubs pitcher Matt Garza, he was getting his nose all bent out of joint because people (notably Brett over at Bleacher Nation) had the unmitigated gall to discuss his injury status on the internet. THE HORROR. You don’t know him! You don’t know his life! Stop talking about his arm! Only HE can talk about his arm, you bunch of jerks. Who the hell do you think you are, anyway?
Cubs starter Matt Garza grabbed his left side and let out a yelp during his first live batting practice session, and was forced to cut things short.
Cubs trainer PJ Mainville walked out to the mound to check on Garza, and the two walked back to the clubhouse.
Cubs manager Dale Sveum called the injury a mild lat strain, and said it would be evaluated on Monday.
“It has subsided and he seems to be doing a lot better now,” Sveum said.
Well, it’s subsided in the sense that he’s no longer yelping and grabbing his side. We still don’t know if he can pitch. But for crying out loud, don’t talk about it on the Twitter. Matt doesn’t like being discussed on the Twitter. In an unrelated story, Travis Wood was seen walking around all day with a huge smile on his face.
While I hate to be the one to point out the obvious, without a healthy Matt Garza in the starting rotation, I get a lot less excited about the Cubs’ starting pitching. I also get less excited about being able to flip Garza for some prospects at the trade deadline. So let’s all get out the Haitian rum and chicken bones and say a couple of prayers for Garza’s speedy recovery, shall we?
Speaking of the internet, the story that had everyone sticking their heads in their respective ovens last night was the speculation that the Chicago Cubs might leave WGN entirely after their contract with the station is up in 2014.
Cubs Chairman Tom Ricketts is always looking to increase the team’s revenue sources, and now it appears likely the team will wave goodbye to their longtime TV home when its contract ends after the 2014 season.
Ricketts declined to address their plans on Sunday, except to say a discussion on rights fees will begin in 2013.
“Obviously local media rights have been increasing in value,” he said. “Hopefully at some point we will be able to get more value for our media rights. It’s just something that’s playing out over time.”
By way of full disclosure, I work for the Chicago Tribune, who also owns WGN. And while I have no insider information on what’s going to happen between the Cubs and WGN, I’m not sure why this is so surprising to so many. Most games are on Comcast Sportsnet these days, anyway, and the number of games on WGN has been diminishing over the years. Sure, we all loved the days of coming home after school to find the Cubs on good ole Channel 9, but this hasn’t been the reality of Cubs baseball for many years.
The payoff? Having their own YES-style network could vault the Chicago Cubs into elite company when it comes to revenue and payroll, and frankly, I’m willing to give up a bit of my childhood nostalgia in order to see this team compete year-after-year. And, if I’m being honest, the people who aren’t willing to give that up love warm, fuzzy feelings more than they love winning Chicago Cubs baseball.
And while we’re on the subject of destroying our childhood memories and everything good about life, Tom Ricketts needs everyone to calm down about night games and signs. At least for now:
Ricketts said the Cubs will not be adding more advertising signs this season, nor will they play more night games.
The club chairman met with the media after talking to Cubs players. His message to them?
“My message to the team, well, it’s real Knute Rockne stuff, real emotional — I think there were some tears in there,” Ricketts said, joking.
Oh, to have been a fly on the wall for that.
Finally this morning, all the beat writers are giggling over this:
MESA, Ariz. — About halfway through Cubs manager Dale Sveum’s speech prior to the first full squad workout on Sunday, the players started to take off their jackets to reveal bright orange hunting gear tops. Then, they put on the orange caps.
“Of course, they gave me one with a target on it,” Sveum said, chuckling.
The quick clothing change was a humorous response to Sveum being accidentally shot by Hall of Famer Robin Yount while the two were quail hunting in Arizona before the Winter Meetings. Sveum was hit in the ear and back.
Is it just me, or is this team not even very good at making fun of people? I mean, this joke is okay, but there’s so much more you could do with someone being accidentally shot by Robin Yount. This roster continues to disappoint.
If you haven’t been paying attention thus far, Theo knocked off Jed in the bunting tourney (then was knocked out himself by wunderkid Scott Harris), live batting practice started yesterday, and we have inter-squad games this Thursday and Friday. Per Carrie Muskat:
The Cubs will play intrasquad games Thursday and Friday, with Chris Rusin, Cory Wade, Trey McNutt, Nick Struck, Robert Whitenack and Rafael Dolis scheduled to pitch Thursday. Brooks Raley, Drew Carpenter, Hector Rondon, Dayan Diaz, Alberto Cabrera, Michael Bowden, Blake Parker and Jensen Lewis were slated to pitch Friday.
And here I was hoping the Cubs would forget about Brooks Raley. Foiled again.