I was talking to one of the front office guys for the Cubs at Wrigley Field yesterday, and we agreed that, over the course of the last few weeks, there’s been a sea change in the attitude of Cubs fans. Oh sure, we still know this team stinks, and we’ll still complain about it, but there’s been a lot of good news coming out of Clark & Addison lately. Finally. And it’s put a spring in my step.
Maybe it’s the signing of Kris Bryant (who the Cubs introduced at Wrigley today), perhaps it was knowing that the Cubs were willing to jettison dead weight like Carlos Marmol, Shawn Camp, and Ian Stewart. Perhaps it’s all the good news about how the kids are doing down on the farm or the highly-praised international toutings. At any rate, I feel like, as Tom Loxas said over at Cubs Den, that the worst is behind us. You can see the light at the end of the tunnel from here. Let’s all hold hands and walk towards it together, shall we?
Of course, opening a can of 3-0 whupass on the Cardinals and their mouth-breathing, jorts-wearing fans is always a good time. And when Edwin Jackson finally gets a win, it’s a good day:
Edwin Jackson pitched seven shutout innings, Anthony Rizzo drove in three runs and the Cubs turned in a strong defensive effort before a crowd of 35,379.
Jackson, who gave up three hits, has won five of his last seven starts and has allowed one or no runs in four of them. He’s 3-0 with a 1.93 ERA in his last three outings.
“Like I (said) earlier in the season when I was struggling, it’s a crazy game and you just have to keep throwing,” Jackson said. “Just have to have confidence things will change and the ball will roll your way.”
The Cubs won for the 10th time in 15 games.
Rizzo has five hits and five RBIs over his last 11 at-bats, continuing to follow a cold streak with a hot one.
I’m not going to say that my perfect strike (okay, it was a little high, but it didn’t bounce!) had anything to do with the Cubs winning, I’m just going to point out that the Cubs are 2-0 when I pitch. Ahem. By the way, I’m nursing a fairly big crush on Blake Parker and his sexy lumberjack look, even after he almost blew the save.
The Cubs introduced the darling Kris Bryant and his garbage bags full of money today at Wrigley:
The Chicago Cubs formally introduced top draft pick Kris Bryant on Friday at a Wrigley Field news conference in the PNC Club suite.
Bryant, the a slugging third baseman from the University of San Diego, agreed to a club-record $6.7 million signing bonus on Wednesday.
“This is a dream of mine and I am very happy to be a Cub,” Bryant said. “Hopefully I can play this game for a long time. I am excited to get my journey started. I am going to go out there and do my best.”
Bryant, who was accompanied at the press conference by his agent Scott Boras, said he would go to Mesa, Arizona, first to “knock off the rust”, then head off to play with the Boise Hawks.
While we’re on the subject of people who don’t play for the Cubs, it looks like Scott Baker make actually make another appearance this season:
CHICAGO — Scott Baker, rehabbing from Tommy John surgery, will start for Class A Kane County on Sunday. If all goes well, he could join the Cubs’ rotation in August.
Baker threw a bullpen at Wrigley Field on Thursday, his final tuneup before he starts against West Michigan in his first game action. He did make one Cactus League start March 17, but was shut down after that, and diagnosed with a strained elbow.
“[Thursday] was better than what I saw the last time, before he had the setback,” Cubs manager Dale Sveum said. “He was letting it go his last 10, 15 pitches. I don’t think he’s ever going to exert himself on the mound too much until it counts. It was coming out of his hand pretty easy. Everything is going really well now.”
Baker was expected to make four Minor League rehab starts, and if he continues to progress, will give the Cubs a fresh arm for the final two months of the season. That may be key if the Cubs deal Matt Garza by the Trade Deadline.
The Cubs will try to kick the Cards in the teeth again this afternoon at 3:05 pm CT. Carlos Villanueva (2-4, 3.63) will take the mound to face Joe Kelly (0-3, 4.15). First pitch is at 3:05 pm CT on WGN. Lineup to come.