9:28 AM CDT, July 13, 2011
The White Sox are five games out of first place in the AL Central and just lost five of seven at home against divisional opponents. Paul Konerko says his Sox don’t look like a division-winning team right now. Rank honesty about a team playing pretty rank baseball.
The Cubs, meanwhile, are 18 games below .500 and have the second-worst record in baseball. Matt Garza says his Cubs are “right where we want to be.’’ Wait, Garza WANTED to be the second-worst team in baseball? Is Garza that delusional or does he believe you can play Cubs fans for stupid? Either way, he has ownership written all over him.
And there you have the difference in Chicago: On the South Side, they stick you with truth serum, while on the North Side, there’s a group discount for stupid gas.
I fear that the Sox’s main strategy in the second half is to believe that Adam Dunn and Alex Rios can’t be this bad the rest of the season, which is troublesome because, yes, they can be this bad, and in fact, I think Rios has it in him to be even worse. The strategy cannot be just hoping. The Sox manager has to seriously bench the guys who don’t produce. Big money, veterans, whoever --- hit or sit. And Sox general manager needed to move someone out of that clubhouse at least two weeks ago. Heck of a time for Ozzie Guillen and Kenny Williams to turn all Mike Quade and Jim Hendry on us.
Konerko, Carlos Quentin and Starlin Castro¿ combined to go 0-4, make an error, get thrown out at the plate, and make the last out of the All-Star Game with a teammate on third. Doesn’t matter where you play, it’s still Chicago baseball.
That said, Castro is young and special. He’s thirsting to improve. He’s already a star, an All-Star, in fact, but he isn’t taken with himself. Instead, he’s talking about wanting to be the best, not acting like he already is. You can’t help but think of Derrick Rose. You can’t help but think that’s a great thing.
Best thing about the All-Star Game for the Sox was Detroit’s Miguel Cabrera suffering an oblique strain on his right side. Such injuries can sideline players for a month, but more immediately, Cabrera might be unavailable to kill the Sox when their miserable season resumes this weekend. So, even if the Sox can’t figure out how to help themselves --- choking two of three against the worst team in the league and five of seven against AL Central foes at home --- then at least one opponent in one of the worst divisions in baseball found a way to help.
Cabrera’s injury is exactly why teams don’t want their players in that meaningless game, but hey, at least Bud Selig can now award the Tigers home-MRI advantage.
The All-Star Game determined home-field advantage in the World Series. The Yankees are a team with a stake in that. The Yankees captain skipped the All-Star Game. How important is the game again? Connect the dots, Bud.
Wait, the All-Star Game was played in a National League park, but used the designated hitter? Isn’t that the kind of thing you’d do in a meaningless exhibition game? I’ll hang up and listen for Selig’s next step in clowning his sport’s championship.
So, does the All-Star Game result confirm that Quade is far better as a coach in a National League dugout than as a manager? I’ll hang up and listen for Hendry’s hummena-hummena-hummena.
As the Cubs’ death spiral continues in the second half of this season, I can’t imagine the manner in which players will publicly disrespect Quade.
The Brewers acquired closer Francisco Rodriguez¿ from the Mets, and I’m wondering, how does this affect the Cubs’ chances of reaching the World Series?
But hey, at least the Cubs would have home-field advantage this year.
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