Junior Lake is Magic, Tom Tunney is not

If you aren’t tuning in to Chicago Cubs games to check out The Junior Lake Show (with Special Guest, Junior Lake!), you are really missing out on some fun baseball these days. The bullpen is not as much fun, but that’s completely beside the point:

juniorPHOENIX-  Junior Lake had another big night for the Cubs, going 3-for-5 with a home run in a 10-4 loss to Arizona.

With 12 hits in his first five games, Lake has more than any Cubs player since 1916, and one more than Andy Pafko had in 1943.

“He’s playing as good as anybody can imagine for coming up after five games,” manager Dale Sveum said. “Every at-bat has been quality. He’s getting good pitches. The only pitches he’s been swinging bad at are great pitches… He’s one of them guys that look like he likes his stuff and performs better at this level.”

Sveum said he wasn’t sure if Lake would lead off again on Wednesday.

I mean, he’s only got a .565 on-base percentage. Why would you leave him in the lead-off spot with David DeJesus coming back? Come on, Dale. Try to keep up with the rest of the herd.

Here’s the best thing about Junior Lake: For every 2-3 brilliant plays he makes (and there have been some real beauties), he makes one hilariously boneheaded play. Usually, said play manifests itself in the form of a Willie Mays Hays TOOTBLAN, but not always. Last night, for example, he chased a ball into the wall, leaping like a ballerina (seriously, toes pointed and everything) IN THE DIRECTION OF THE WALL. Of course, the first thing to hit the wall was his foot, which made the rest of him fall down in true Benny Hill fashion. It was pretty special. But he’s just SO GOOD, you can’t even get mad at him, you just laugh.

Laughing at Junior also helps distract you from the fact that the bullpen gave up 6 runs.

In Wrigley renovation news, it looks like we have a tentative deal between the Cubs and Tom Tunney, which could be approved by the City Council as early as today:

After months of public posturing and private arm-twisting, Chicago aldermen are poised to sign off today on a Cubs plan to remake Wrigley Field and the surrounding neighborhood following last-minute tweaks to the $500 million project that brought on board a key alderman who had opposed it.

All sides will be able to claim some measure of victory.

Wrigleyville Ald. Tom Tunney got the team to agree to remove for the time being a pedestrian bridge over Clark Street. Rooftop club owners who have threatened to sue if their lucrative views are blocked saw Mayor Rahm Emanuel announce a 10-year halt to new outfield signs beyond the two already planned. The Cubs win much of the revenue-generating advertising that owners have long coveted. And the mayor can boast of a huge stadium renovation project that doesn’t rely on public financial support.

Because, you know, pedestrian traffic around Wrigley works so well as it is, why would you want to mess with it? I mean, you have to admit. the current system of enormous herds of people ignoring the cross walks and police officers and crossing Addison wily nily is pretty perfect. A bridge that would lift people ABOVE THE TRAFFIC and get them out of harms way is one big safety hazard, right Tom?

There’s also the question of how long the Clark Street pedestrian bridge will be off the table. Tunney, who sees the bridge connecting the Ricketts hotel to the ballpark as a safety concern and a giveaway of public space for the private use of a small group, sought to make the case during testimony that the team will be hard-pressed to get it built soon. “This motion will be deferred indefinitely about the bridge over Clark Street. So that is for a very, very long time,” Tunney said. “Nothing is forever.”

A Cubs source said the organization has no timeline for bringing the bridge back to the city for consideration but indicated the team would expect “some kind of a trade” in exchange for permanently scratching the bridge off its wish list.

So as soon as Tom Tunney is out of office, the bridge is back on the table? Let’s make it happen, Wrigleyville.

And was the Alfonso Soriano deal a figment of the trade deadline’s imagination? Not if Jon Heyman has anything to say about it:

Various sources have been suggesting throughout the day that the Yankees and Cubs aren’t necessarily all that close to a deal involving Alfonso Soriano, and that’s very believable.

They are surely haggling over the money, and since there’s a lot of money involved they may still be haggling for a while.

But that doesn’t mean a deal won’t get done. It simply makes too much sense for Soriano to return to the Yankees.


Word is, the Cubs will wind up paying more than half the $25 million remaining on Soriano’s deal through next year when they are done bartering (and assuming they can reach a deal). Soriano is still a productive power hitter, but he’s been overpaid since signing that $136 million, eight-year deal at the height of the market.

The Yankees wouldn’t appear too have other great options. The Padres told them Chase Headley can’t be had (at least by them). The White Sox would want the Yankees to pick up allAlex Rios’ $12.5 million salary, the Mariners aren’t selling (at least not yet) and Norichika Aokidoesn’t provide the type of power they seek.

The Yankees have checked in on Justin Morneau. But it shouldn’t be a surprise they prefer Soriano, who’s showing way more power and is also righthanded.

The Cubs will try to redeem themselves tonight at Chase Field. First pitch is at 8:40 pm CT.

22 thoughts on “Junior Lake is Magic, Tom Tunney is not

  1. dabirdguy says:

    I think the Cubs need more TEAM SPIRIT. I noticed that Joe Mauser of the TWINS went out and sired TWINS himself. THAT is team spirit.
    Where are the baby bears that our guys have sired?

    1. Doc Blume says:

      I’m pretty sure if our team sired some baby bears, some laws would have been broken.

      1. Doc Blume says:

        I’d get banned from this site if I made a joke about this in relation to the Red Sox.

        1. gravedigger says:

          the only people we ban are spammers :)

  2. Doc Blume says:

    Here is a good post on Fangraphs about the fact that Soriano is pretty valuable for the Yankees to get…and also making a point that Soriano was traded to the Rangers for Alex Rodriguez and that they now are looking for him to really replace him in the lineup.


  3. sloanpeterson2 says:

    My highlight of last night was hearing the arc of Marmol from the mouths of Lyons and Collins the Dodgers loser road announcers. Lyons kept pronouncing Marmols name with a french accent,kept saying how he thought Marmol was a gret pitcher and a steal for the Ddogers, and what meanies the Cubs fans were. Then Marmol actually began pitching and his tone changed. Lyons began saying things like ” I guess that’s what made Cubs fans tear out their hair.” Marmol nearly hits a guy in the head:”I guess Marmol needs a little more work on his control.” End result, Marmol gives up runs, is pulled from the game and unfortunately the blue jays pitching also goes and they give the game to the Ddogers. Let’s see how long Marmol is in the bullpen before he gets sent back to the minors…

    1. Doc Blume says:


      1. Doc Blume says:

        Mark…we should have both a “like” and a “love” button.

        1. juliedicaro says:

          And a “Julie is soooo right” button

          1. Doc Blume says:

            That button probably wouldn’t be used very much.

            1. dabirdguy says:

              You always state the obvious!

  4. sloanpeterson2 says:

    like times infinity…

  5. juliedicaro says:

    Just told by a source that the Cubs are preparing to take Soriano’s photo down in the press room at Wrigley.

    1. Doc Blume says:

      You’ve been talking to Phil Rogers’ dog again…

      Or maybe it was just Phil Rogers himself.

  6. Doc Blume says:

    Tom Tunney…after getting just about everything he’s asked for over the last month, it beginning another fight against the renovations right now in front of the city council…just before the final vote for approval of the project.

    What a total asshole…especially after what he has said after the previous two committee votes…claiming he had no more objections to the project.

    1. Doc Blume says:

      But his epic rant today was to no avail…

      The Wrigley Renovation PASSES!!!!

      Woohoo!!! New modern cramped seats and traffic congestion for everyone!!!

  7. dabirdguy says:

    What pisses me off about the “renovation” is the addition of a hotel instead of PARKING SPACES!

    1. Doc Blume says:

      The neighborhood needs the hotel.

      As far as parking spaces…you can find parking down there if you want. It’s actually driving on residential roads for 3 (or more) miles getting to the ballpark that is the bigger problem. If you add more parking spaces by the ballpark, all you are doing in encouraging more people do drive down there on game day which will create even more nightmares.

      If they work out a deal with Lane Tech and DeVry to use their lots for free…that would go a long way to solving the “parking” issue, but you’ll still spend an hour getting from the Kennedy or the Edens to the ballpark (and the same after the game) whether it’s in your own car or in a shuttle bus.

  8. gravedigger says:

    What in the world, why are comments getting awkwardly numbered now? Was that always happening?

    1. Doc Blume says:


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