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   1. Charles S. will not yield to this monkey court Posted: May 21, 2010 at 08:19 PM (#3539148)
As crazy as this move seems, it is not a bad thing. The last four (or in the Cubs case, 5) spots in your bullpen are the least predictable spots on the roster. Shuffling cheap guys in and out until you catch lightning in a bottle makes more sense than signing the likes of John Grabow, Aaron Heilman or George Sherril to big-money deals.
   2. Brian C Posted: May 21, 2010 at 08:43 PM (#3539166)
Well, I think fans are dumb, too, and I wouldn't have brought back Howry. So what's your point?
   3. SG Posted: May 21, 2010 at 09:06 PM (#3539181)
   4. Kiko Sakata Posted: May 21, 2010 at 09:11 PM (#3539186)
As crazy as this move seems, it is not a bad thing. The last four (or in the Cubs case, 5) spots in your bullpen are the least predictable spots on the roster. Shuffling cheap guys in and out until you catch lightning in a bottle


Yeah, but how much lightning are you likely to find in a 36-year-old pitcher with an ERA over 5 over his last three seasons? The difference between Berg and Howry right now looks like Berg is 10 years younger, more prone to walks, less prone to HRs. I'm not a big fan of putting either one of them into anything but the lowest of low-leverage situations, but given a choice I'll take the younger guy who keeps the ball in the ballpark.

But yeah, at the major-league minimum, which is what I assume he's making, it's not like this is the deal that's going to destroy the Jim Hendry regime or anything like that.
   5. Brian C Posted: May 21, 2010 at 09:23 PM (#3539197)
it's not like this is the deal that's going to destroy the Jim Hendry regime or anything like that.

Probably not, but if Howry comes in and gives up a few highly visible homers, it'll be awfully tough to live down.
   6. HMS Moses Taylor Posted: May 21, 2010 at 09:39 PM (#3539204)
Isn't there another arm or two at Iowa that would be a better option than this - Gray, for instance?
   7. HMS Moses Taylor Posted: May 21, 2010 at 09:40 PM (#3539206)
And the Hendry comment was more towards his quote that Howry was bringing veteran experience to the pen. This team is loaded with veterans, what exactly is Howry going to add that isn't already here?
   8. Brian C Posted: May 21, 2010 at 10:52 PM (#3539272)
Isn't there another arm or two at Iowa that would be a better option than this - Gray, for instance?

It's funny, but I'm not really sure there is. Gray doesn't seem obviously better to me. Mitch Atkins? Thomas Diamond? Maybe this is Hendry's way to get back at us for being so mean to Samardzija.
   9. ursus arctos Posted: May 21, 2010 at 11:55 PM (#3539322)
I read that as a reference to Pete Gray . . .
   10. Spahn Insane Posted: May 22, 2010 at 01:17 AM (#3539462)
And the Hendry comment was more towards his quote that Howry was bringing veteran experience to the pen. This team is loaded with veterans, what exactly is Howry going to add that isn't already here?

It corrects an imbalance. We need a veteran righty who sucks as much donkey ass from the right side as Grabow does from the left.

Seriously--just shoot me already.
   11. Spahn Insane Posted: May 22, 2010 at 01:19 AM (#3539468)
Howry was finished two years ago. He's allowing over 3 HR per 9 (!) this year. I know our pen's been a trainwreck, but this isn't a fix for anything.
   12. McCoy Posted: May 22, 2010 at 01:33 AM (#3539505)
as soon as I heard he got I released I just knew that he would become a cub. Funny part is that pat & ron thought howry's career was over when they heard the news.
   13. OlePerfesser Posted: May 22, 2010 at 02:00 AM (#3539552)
Interestingly, he's put up that 10.67 ERA while being relatively lucky on balls in play, with a .250 BABIP.

By contrast, the A's recently DFA'd Chad Gaudin, who has an 8.83 ERA that's largely a result of a .440 BABIP. Gaudin is walking 2.6 per 9 and striking out 10.4, while Howry's walking and striking out 3.8 per 9.

If I were in Hendry's shoes, I'd have called Billy Beane about Gaudin before wasting time with Howry. Neither of them may be very good, but there's at least a better chance of getting something out of Gaudin than Howry.
   14. Mess with the Meat, you get the Wad! Posted: May 22, 2010 at 05:04 AM (#3539634)
retro, im glad my theory has caught on.
i would rather have gone after wuertz the gaudin. and do lou an hendry not remember why they got rid of howry? the ###### gave up a home run damn near every apperence
   15. HMS Moses Taylor Posted: May 22, 2010 at 05:54 PM (#3539773)
If I were in Hendry's shoes, I'd have called Billy Beane about Gaudin before wasting time with Howry. Neither of them may be very good, but there's at least a better chance of getting something out of Gaudin than Howry.

The Cubs already gave Gaudin away. I think he ran over Lou's dog or something, so he's definitely not welcome back.
   16. Nineto Lezcano needs to get his shit together (CW) Posted: May 23, 2010 at 03:22 PM (#3540425)
It's funny, but I'm not really sure there is. Gray doesn't seem obviously better to me. Mitch Atkins? Thomas Diamond? Maybe this is Hendry's way to get back at us for being so mean to Samardzija.


Hey, you've noticed the plus side to this - it keeps Samardzija safely at AAA. I'm suddenly enthusiastic about this move.
   17. Nineto Lezcano needs to get his shit together (CW) Posted: May 23, 2010 at 03:22 PM (#3540426)
It's funny, but I'm not really sure there is. Gray doesn't seem obviously better to me. Mitch Atkins? Thomas Diamond? Maybe this is Hendry's way to get back at us for being so mean to Samardzija.


Hey, you've noticed the plus side to this - it keeps Samardzija safely at AAA. I'm suddenly enthusiastic about this move.
   18. McCoy Posted: May 26, 2010 at 03:28 AM (#3543114)
Well, Lou and Hendry just figured out how to get good performances out of their pen. They simply have the starter throw 8 shutout innings and then hand the ball to Marmol. I guess on the day Marmol can't pitch they give it to Marshall.
   19. OlePerfesser Posted: May 26, 2010 at 12:18 PM (#3543193)
...I think he ran over Lou's dog or something...


Yeah, that would be a deal-breaker, Moses. I'm sure that Howry has a rep as a "character guy" and that that played some part in this decision. Decision-makers are human, and sometimes they decide based on criteria like trust, respect, affection, or the lack thereof, instead of K/BB or BABIP. Esp. when ignoring such factors (coughBradleycough) has produced recent pain.

On McCoy's insight, the question is what'll happen to that fiendishly clever plan when Zambrano rejoins the rotation.

I'm actually pretty optimistic that Z is getting it together; I think (per BABIP) that he was pretty unlucky early in the season.

As to whom to bump, my radical proposal would be: no one. I'd go with a 6-man rotation, and then on the starters' "throw days" I'd use them for an inning in relief, if necessary. The goal would be to concentrate as many innings as possible in those 6, plus Marmol and Marshall, and keep the other dreck off the field except in extremely low leverage situations.

Of course, in this day and age of babying arms and agents deciding how their guys are used, this is a completely silly, theoretical notion - so no need to ridicule me for it. I know it ain't going to happen. But if this was 1948...
   20. OlePerfesser Posted: May 26, 2010 at 12:26 PM (#3543195)
P.S.: I'm visiting Chicago and excited to be making my first visit to Wrigley for tonight's game. Any suggestions from Thinking Cubs Fans about neighborhood landmarks I absolutely, positively have to see (and, preferably, consume some food and drink)? Thanks!
   21. Andere Richtingen Posted: May 26, 2010 at 04:00 PM (#3543359)
P.S.: I'm visiting Chicago and excited to be making my first visit to Wrigley for tonight's game. Any suggestions from Thinking Cubs Fans about neighborhood landmarks I absolutely, positively have to see (and, preferably, consume some food and drink)? Thanks!

Hopefully a local or two will chime in, but the neighborhood around Wrigley is a pretty typical Chicago neighborhood, with a huge excess of bars, restaurants and traffic. I recommend getting there early and having a brew or two along with dinner at Goose Island brewery, on Clark St. just a bit south of Wrigley. Of course, you might want to stop in at Murphy's Bleachers just to say you've done it, but expect a large and annoying crowd. I like Yak-Zies on Clark a bit north of the ballpark for food and beer myself -- better food, better crowd. Other options: La Gondola for pizza, Thai Classic for Thai...again, hopefully a local will offer some suggestions. As you go east toward the lake, you get to "Boys Town," so don't be surprised as the demographic changes.

The most important thing is to do the complete walk around the circumference of the ballpark to get the full feel of it.

Have fun!
   22. Eddo Posted: May 26, 2010 at 04:27 PM (#3543384)
P.S.: I'm visiting Chicago and excited to be making my first visit to Wrigley for tonight's game. Any suggestions from Thinking Cubs Fans about neighborhood landmarks I absolutely, positively have to see (and, preferably, consume some food and drink)? Thanks!

Unless you really want to experience the super-annoying Wrigley bar crowds, I'd avoid: Murphy's Bleachers, The Cubby Bear, Harry Caray's, John Barleycorn's, and almost anything within 100 yards of the stadium. The one exception would be the newly-renovated Sports Corner (disclaimer: I have not been there since they renovated it), which used to have the best tater tots in the city. It's located across Sheffield from the Captain Morgan Club.

As for post-game bars: Uberstein, on Clark Street, usually gets a more laid-back crowd; if you head south down Sheffield, you'll come to either Redmond's or Sheffield's, which are far enough (about three blocks) from Wrigley to draw lesser crowds.

Really, you can't go wrong with any bar; you can always move to another if the atmosphere isn't to your liking.
   23. Spahn Insane Posted: May 26, 2010 at 04:27 PM (#3543385)
P.S.: I'm visiting Chicago and excited to be making my first visit to Wrigley for tonight's game. Any suggestions from Thinking Cubs Fans about neighborhood landmarks I absolutely, positively have to see (and, preferably, consume some food and drink)? Thanks!

What kind of food do you like? I second the Goose Island recommendation, and the wandering around the park (inside and out) thing, but I'm not really a huge Wrigleyville fan beyond the ballpark itself. I've become too much of a curmudgeon to really appreciate it.
   24. Spahn Insane Posted: May 26, 2010 at 04:29 PM (#3543390)
Unless you really want to experience the super-annoying Wrigley bar crowds, I'd avoid: Murphy's Bleachers, The Cubby Bear, Harry Caray's, John Barleycorn's, and almost anything within 100 yards of the stadium.

Yes. And Slugger's. For the love of god, avoid Slugger's.

If you're able to venture a couple miles north of the park, Hopleaf (on Clark just south of Foster) is a great place for beer (particularly Belgian, but they've got scores of beers on tap) and food.
   25. Spahn Insane Posted: May 26, 2010 at 04:35 PM (#3543392)
John Barleycorn's, FWIW, is perhaps the ideal place to observe the American Douch3b@g in his natural habitat (and in large numbers), so there is that. Quite possibly the most irritating establishment I've ever set foot in.
   26. Spahn Insane Posted: May 26, 2010 at 04:39 PM (#3543396)
And if you're a whiskey guy, don't miss Delilah's (Lincoln just south of Diversey--about a mile and a half from the ballpark to the SSW). Their whiskey menu is staggering.
   27. Andere Richtingen Posted: May 26, 2010 at 05:43 PM (#3543497)
which used to have the best tater tots in the city. It's located across Sheffield from the Captain Morgan Club.

Best tater tots in the city? WTF?

And Captain Morgan Club...could there be a more pure theme for attracting ##########?

Also, Gern mentioned Delilah's, a motion I second. I also recommend Maza, an outstanding Middle Eastern place right across the street from it.
   28. Spahn Insane Posted: May 26, 2010 at 05:46 PM (#3543503)
If we're gonna get into Middle Eastern food, I've gotta toot my neighborhood's horn. We've got the best Middle Eastern in Chicago; I especially recommend Noon o Kabob, Al Khaymeih, and Baghdad Kabob. Take the brown line from Belmont to Kedzie.
   29. Bunny Vincennes Posted: May 26, 2010 at 09:16 PM (#3543726)
I will also recommend Delilah's. Its a great place. I also like La Gondola. After a couple of beers there and some pizza, I need to start heading for the El back downtown for a martini or three.
   30. OlePerfesser Posted: May 26, 2010 at 09:44 PM (#3543758)
Thanks for all the help, Cubs fans. I did circumnavigate the park, and it's unreal. I'd heard about the rooftop "spillover" bleachers, but it's amazing to see. Also had to stop at Harry's after seeing his statue.

Saw Yak-Zies on Clark earlier, and for some reason that seems appealing for pre-game meal. After the game, I believe my plan will be to sample as many bars as possible, even if some of them are populated by Am. D.B.'s - all part of the experience. Go Cubs!
   31. McCoy Posted: May 27, 2010 at 05:36 PM (#3544496)
The one time they score 5 runs in a game and they end up allowing 8.
   32. The Ghost of Sam Fuld Posted: May 27, 2010 at 07:40 PM (#3544612)
I've been working on a knuckleball in my spare time down here in Des Moines...

Hey, if it worked for John Cangelosi, it can work for me too!
   33. McCoy Posted: May 28, 2010 at 12:51 AM (#3544813)
see as long as they stick to the new plan, have the starter throw 7 or 8 shutout innings and then turn it over to marshall and marmol, they can't lose.

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