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Wednesday, January 15, 2014

ESPN: Cubs not surprised by mascot backlash

The Cubs unveiled “Clark”—a Cub bear—on Monday, and the reaction was swift as the mascot was depicted in unflattering terms on several social media outlets.

 

Half Joe Camel and a third Fonzarelli.

spike Posted: January 15, 2014 at 11:18 AM | 71 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: chicago cubs, mascots

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   1. RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: January 15, 2014 at 11:48 AM (#4639399)
Put a sock in it Roy.
   2. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: January 15, 2014 at 11:51 AM (#4639402)
So, if you knew that the fans would hate your new mascot, why not come up with a better mascot? You know, one they wouldn't hate.
   3. Shooty Survived the Shutdown of '14! Posted: January 15, 2014 at 11:54 AM (#4639414)
So, if you knew that the fans would hate your new mascot, why not come up with a better mascot? You know, one they wouldn't hate.

You don't understand synergistic paradigmatical branding opportunities, do you?
   4. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: January 15, 2014 at 11:55 AM (#4639417)
There's nothing more repugnant than a bear mascot. Bring back Colonel Reb!
   5. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: January 15, 2014 at 11:57 AM (#4639421)
You don't understand synergistic paradigmatical branding opportunities, do you?

All I want is a real freaking bear, damn it!
   6. Shooty Survived the Shutdown of '14! Posted: January 15, 2014 at 11:59 AM (#4639424)
Bring back Colonel Reb!

My god was I glad to get away from that fight. Too bad they didn't end up going with Admiral Ackbar. That would have made Ole Miss the most popular school in the freakin world.
   7. RMc is a fine piece of cheese Posted: January 15, 2014 at 11:59 AM (#4639429)
Are mascots really necessary at the major league level? I mean, I understand it in the minors: nobody actually watches the damn game anymore; the unwashed masses just use the ballpark as a place for their nasty progeny to run around for a few hours. But in the big leagues, when you're paying several dozen dollars a ticket, is some idiot in a freak suit really going to add to your enjoyment?
   8. Crispix reaches boiling point with lackluster play Posted: January 15, 2014 at 12:00 PM (#4639431)
Some fans will hate any mascot or other seemingly unnecessary thing you add to the team's traditional brand strategy. That's inevitable. The question is, does anyone LIKE the new mascot?

To me it looks cheap. It looks like a piece of clip art that would be better suited to the Moline Rockhounds or Joliet Awesomedawgz or something. But maybe it will start doing interesting things, like the Pirate Parrot does.
   9. Shooty Survived the Shutdown of '14! Posted: January 15, 2014 at 12:01 PM (#4639432)
But in the big leagues, when you're paying several dozen dollars a ticket, is some idiot in a freak suit really going to add to your enjoyment?

Naw. I think they're good for stuff outside the game, though. Community events and the like.
   10. Crispix reaches boiling point with lackluster play Posted: January 15, 2014 at 12:03 PM (#4639434)
Naw. I think they're good for stuff outside the game, though. Community events and the like.

If Poochie the Bear never sets foot on the playing field and never interacts with anyone over the age of 9, it should work.
   11. eddieot Posted: January 15, 2014 at 12:09 PM (#4639448)
But in the big leagues, when you're paying several dozen dollars a ticket, is some idiot in a freak suit really going to add to your enjoyment?

Clearly you have never attended a game in Philly. The Phanatic is front and center pre-game and makes an in-game appearance in the 7th inning that I think most fans look forward to. He is around just enough to be funny but not enough to be annoying. He is the perfect mascot.
   12. spike Posted: January 15, 2014 at 12:10 PM (#4639450)
Dammit, I wish I'd seen this story first - slightly NSFW
   13. zonk Posted: January 15, 2014 at 12:11 PM (#4639452)
If Poochie the Bear never sets foot on the playing field and never interacts with anyone over the age of 9, it should work.


This.

I posted it yesterday -- but this link to a RedEye article (SFW) includes a link to a site that is most definitely NSFW (it's clearly noted) where folks did some photo-shopping of Clark.... On one hand, I feel bad because if Poochie mainly sticks to hospital pediatric wards, then god bless him... but yeah, unless he can pitch - I never want to see him on the field.
   14. GregD Posted: January 15, 2014 at 12:11 PM (#4639453)
Cheap effort to gain attention gains attention
   15. RMc is a fine piece of cheese Posted: January 15, 2014 at 12:11 PM (#4639454)
If Poochie the Bear never sets foot on the playing field and never interacts with anyone over the age of 9, it should work.


Poochie died on the way back to his home planet.
   16. RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: January 15, 2014 at 12:21 PM (#4639471)
But in the big leagues, when you're paying several dozen dollars a ticket, is some idiot in a freak suit really going to add to your enjoyment?



"Those antics may play in the sticks, but this is Capital City!"
   17. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: January 15, 2014 at 12:42 PM (#4639488)
I dunno, I think a fat guy dancing to "Baby Elephant Walk" would be much more popular than another furry.
   18. McCoy Posted: January 15, 2014 at 12:50 PM (#4639498)
Dammit, I wish I'd seen this story first - slightly NSFW

Hey, one of those Dominick stores that they are closing was my old grocery near me as a kid. Getting a little moist in the old eye balls.
   19. Hang down your head, Tom Foley Posted: January 15, 2014 at 12:54 PM (#4639502)
And now they introduce Clark's sidekick, Backlash, a bear with attitude. He's edgy, he's "in your face." You've heard the expression "let's get busy"? Well, this is a bear who gets "biz-zay!" Consistently and thoroughly.
   20. Pat Rapper's Delight Posted: January 15, 2014 at 12:55 PM (#4639506)
Where's Backlash?
   21. hee came hee seop'd he choi'd Posted: January 15, 2014 at 12:56 PM (#4639507)
Is the mascot's name a veiled reference to Clark Griswold, fictitious citizen of Chicago?
   22. RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: January 15, 2014 at 12:58 PM (#4639511)
better suited to the Moline Rockhounds or Joliet Awesomedawgz or something.


I'm not sure if you're kidding or if these are real teams in the Northern League. And I live in a town that has a Northern League team.
   23. winnipegwhip Posted: January 15, 2014 at 01:08 PM (#4639524)
I would like to see Homey the Clown parade around Wrigley Field. He can complain about the players to fans. When errors occur, Homey can proclaim, "Homey don't play that way."

   24. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: January 15, 2014 at 01:08 PM (#4639525)
Is the mascot's name a veiled reference to Clark Griswold, fictitious citizen of Chicago?

I would guess it's a reference to Clark St., which borders Wrigley
   25. base ball chick Posted: January 15, 2014 at 01:08 PM (#4639527)
i hate mascots

why do they always have their stupid mouths gaping? ( except mr met and the phanatic)

   26. spike Posted: January 15, 2014 at 01:13 PM (#4639536)
I'm not sure if you're kidding or if these are real teams in the Northern League.

Midland Rockhounds are a Texas League franchise.
   27. SoSHially Unacceptable Posted: January 15, 2014 at 01:15 PM (#4639539)
And I live in a town that has a Northern League team.


No you don't.

   28. RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: January 15, 2014 at 01:19 PM (#4639549)
Well, whatever that league is called. The American Association, or XXXtreme League, or Doritos Locos League or whatever its called.
   29. Crispix reaches boiling point with lackluster play Posted: January 15, 2014 at 01:19 PM (#4639550)
I thought Moline and Joliet were the Chicago-area teams in the Frontier League, but I confused Moline with Rockford. Or Schaumburg. Or "Crestwood, Illinois", home of the "Windy City Thunderbolts", if such a thing can really exist. Is every single Frontier League team located in the suburbs of an MLB market now?
   30. SoSHially Unacceptable Posted: January 15, 2014 at 01:25 PM (#4639560)
Well, whatever that league is called. The American Association, or XXXtreme League, or Doritos Locos League or whatever its called.


If it's the T-Bones you were referring to, then it's the American Association, where my Gary SouthShore RailCats are the defending champs.

The Northern League is no more.
   31. McCoy Posted: January 15, 2014 at 02:18 PM (#4639617)
why do they always have their stupid mouths gaping?

So that the person inside the suit can see. The Phanatic looks out of his neck while Mr. Met also looks through his mouth.
   32. Willie Mayspedester Posted: January 15, 2014 at 02:38 PM (#4639640)
Once again the South Park guys have the right idea
   33. Kiko Sakata Posted: January 15, 2014 at 02:55 PM (#4639660)
So, if you knew that the fans would hate your new mascot, why not come up with a better mascot? You know, one they wouldn't hate.


It doesn't matter what they did, somebody would hate it and the haters would be loudest on social media. That's the world we live in.

The question is, does anyone LIKE the new mascot?


Sure, I'll be that guy. Yeah, I kind of like it.
   34. SteveM. Posted: January 15, 2014 at 03:00 PM (#4639667)
How about investing in the major league instead of creating idiotic mascots?
   35. Sunday silence Posted: January 15, 2014 at 03:03 PM (#4639670)
He is around just enough to be funny but not enough to be annoying. He is the perfect mascot.


So maybe BTF can adopt that ThickieDon kid as its mascot?
   36. just plain joe Posted: January 15, 2014 at 04:35 PM (#4639735)
Is every single Frontier League team located in the suburbs of an MLB market now?


Not quite, Evansville, Indiana has a Frontier League team, the Otters.

why do they always have their stupid mouths gaping? ( except mr met and the phanatic)


I think the gaping mouth is there to provide an eye hole for the person in the mascot suit, and maybe ventilation as well.
   37. Fernigal McGunnigle has become a merry hat Posted: January 15, 2014 at 04:47 PM (#4639761)
the American Association, where my Gary SouthShore RailCats are the defending champs.

Gary plays in the U.S. Steel Yard, which might be the best corporate tie-in name for a ballpark.
   38. RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: January 15, 2014 at 04:48 PM (#4639762)
Once again the South Park guys have the right idea


I thought for sure this was going to be where the kids at South Park Elementary had to vote between having a mascot that was a turd sandwich, or one that was a giant douche.

Both upgrades over "Clark", right?
   39. SoSHially Unacceptable Posted: January 15, 2014 at 04:54 PM (#4639773)

Gary plays in the U.S. Steel Yard, which might be the best corporate tie-in name for a ballpark.


It's especially fitting when you consider the geographical portion of the team's name was also given to it by the steel company.



   40. Willie Mayspedester Posted: January 15, 2014 at 05:45 PM (#4639816)
#38 That would have worked too. This one works as well
   41. RMc is a fine piece of cheese Posted: January 15, 2014 at 06:47 PM (#4639878)
I thought Moline and Joliet were the Chicago-area teams in the Frontier League, but I confused Moline with Rockford. Or Schaumburg. Or "Crestwood, Illinois", home of the "Windy City Thunderbolts", if such a thing can really exist. Is every single Frontier League team located in the suburbs of an MLB market now?


And don't forget Sauget, Illinois, home of the Gateway Grizzlies of the Frontier League...and 249 people.
   42. madvillain Posted: January 15, 2014 at 07:29 PM (#4639934)
I sometimes peruse North Side Baseball whenever there is major Cubs news (and in this offseason this certainly qualifies), traffic is way down on their boards compared to a few years ago, but I find the level of discourse higher than Bleed Cubbie Blue. North Side Baseball is kinda like the Roger Bennett of Cubs fandom (sardonic yet not overly cynical).

I had to share this absoutely brilliant post from user imb!


"They hate me," he said. "I haven't even been the mascot one day and they all already hate me."
He'd grown up, like most kids in his neighborhood, with dreams of manning third base for the Cubs. The cover of the diary he kept as a nine-year-old was now almost completely worn off, and some of the pages threatened to fall out of the spiral rings. But, in this moment, he found himself turning the pages. He'd dared not open it for years, afraid of losing some of the priceless mementos of his past.

In it, he found he'd charted his career path as a Cubs minor league.

"'Triple A by 20,' what a joke," he said, aware that when he was 20, he had actually been a D-student with a steadily growing ponch above his belt. The Freshman 15 had gotten him at least twice, appropriate, considering he'd repeated many of the classes he'd taken those first two semesters.

But the thought struck him that, at just 25, he was still tasked with going to Wrigley Field every day. Sure it wasn't on the hot corner, but he was still in the park. And yeah, the adults would hate him, throw beer on him, hell, probably piss on him. But the kids would love him. And wasn't that the point? Who dreams of being a pro athlete as a child with the goal being the adoration of adults? He'd always envisioned himself taking pictures with little kids, signing autographs, tussling their hair and calling them "champ" or "sport."

Suddenly he discovered he was no longer dreading the job, he was actually looking forward to it.

Running his fingers across his chinstrap beard, he looked one last time into the Tupac poster above his bed, "Hail Mary" playing on his iPod.

"Now, do you want to ride or die?" he asked.


awesome!
   43. Poulanc Posted: January 15, 2014 at 07:43 PM (#4639942)
Does anyone complaining about the mascot have an idea to make the experience of going to a Cubs game more family friendly? That's what they are going after, isn't it?
   44. Cabbage Posted: January 15, 2014 at 07:54 PM (#4639947)
I sometimes peruse North Side Baseball whenever there is major Cubs news (and in this offseason this certainly qualifies), traffic is way down on their boards compared to a few years ago, but I find the level of discourse higher than Bleed Cubbie Blue.


I've come to spend most of my time at Bleacher Nation. Brett is a pretty good Cubs news aggregator, his opinions and analysis are sound, and his prose is quite clean. As far as I could tell, he was the first to pick up on the Cubs' "sign everyone in this year's int'l FA class, and deal with the bonus limitation for next year" strategy.
   45. zonk Posted: January 15, 2014 at 08:03 PM (#4639953)
Does anyone complaining about the mascot have an idea to make the experience of going to a Cubs game more family friendly?


Ban beer sales.
   46. 'zop sympathizes with the wrong ####### people Posted: January 15, 2014 at 08:43 PM (#4639964)
Does anyone complaining about the mascot have an idea to make the experience of going to a Cubs game more family friendly? That's what they are going after, isn't it?


No, but not everything has to be made "family friendly". Some things are awesome as an adult activity; some thing are awesome for kids without a giant stuffed bear bounding about.

I mean, given your user name, if you went to see a performance of Dialogues of the Carmelites, and there was a stuffed bear with a ####### grin giving out t-shirts and hugs at intermission, would you think "oh, great, now the kids will appreciate this" or \"#### you shitty bear die die die like the nuns"?
   47. 'zop sympathizes with the wrong ####### people Posted: January 15, 2014 at 08:46 PM (#4639965)
You know, if there are going to be ads shilling titty fantasy games on this site, I don't think ####### needs to be nannied.
   48. simon bedford Posted: January 15, 2014 at 09:07 PM (#4639968)
well there is this
   49. RickG Posted: January 15, 2014 at 09:16 PM (#4639973)
My childhood best friend is the GM of the Joliet Slammers. I miss the name of the old team, the Joliet Jackhammers. Still have a Jackhammers opening season jersey. But, the Jackhammer owners turned out to be crooks.

I tore my ACL this past summer while in a "sumo suit" for a between-innings contest. My friend doesn't know...I haven't really figured out how to bring that one up yet.
   50. RickG Posted: January 15, 2014 at 09:19 PM (#4639974)
Oh, and Sauget just happened to have the right plot of land for a stadium...right off the interstate, with a farmer (or whomever) eager to sell. There are 700,000 people in the Metro East, and outside of the Cardinals the Grizz are the only game in town.
   51. Poulanc Posted: January 15, 2014 at 09:25 PM (#4639976)
"No, but not everything has to be made "family friendly". Some things are awesome as an adult activity; some thing are awesome for kids without a giant stuffed bear bounding about."


But apparently there is a significant amount of Cubs fans that wanted the game experience to be more family friendly. This ESPN article suggests that the Cubs did a survey, where a segment of the population wanted the park to be more family friendly. If not a mascot, what alternative do you suggest to listen to the segment of the fans that would like to see Wrigley Field more hospitable to younger fans?
   52. madvillain Posted: January 15, 2014 at 09:30 PM (#4639981)
If not a mascot, what alternative do you suggest to listen to the segment of the fans that would like to see Wrigley Field more hospitable to younger fans?


They probably already have one, but a "family section" where they don't allow beer sales would be a good start. I know the Mets have one for example.
   53. Cabbage Posted: January 15, 2014 at 09:41 PM (#4639987)
I recall hearing about a family section in years past.

It's in the Cubs best interests over the long-term to make the stadium more family friendly. Baseball has the same business model as tobacco: get'm hooked while they're young, and you've got a customer for life. Only baseball doesn't kill you.

Except when you root for the g****** Cubs.
   54. McCoy Posted: January 15, 2014 at 09:45 PM (#4639992)
I sometimes peruse North Side Baseball whenever there is major Cubs news (and in this offseason this certainly qualifies), traffic is way down on their boards compared to a few years ago, but I find the level of discourse higher than Bleed Cubbie Blue.

After the demise of the Cubs.com message boards a couple of the posters created North Side baseball and I made travel over there with them as well. Was one of the first 100 posters to sign up and hung out there for about a year or so and believe it or not they wanted me to submit articles for them at one time. My time there kind of petered out as I spent more time at Baseball-Fever and here but it is good to see they are still going though sad to hear that traffic is way down.
   55. 'zop sympathizes with the wrong ####### people Posted: January 15, 2014 at 09:58 PM (#4640001)
But apparently there is a significant amount of Cubs fans that wanted the game experience to be more family friendly. This ESPN article suggests that the Cubs did a survey, where a segment of the population wanted the park to be more family friendly. If not a mascot, what alternative do you suggest to listen to the segment of the fans that would like to see Wrigley Field more hospitable to younger fans?


To the extent an MLB game is not family friendly, its because folks are getting piss-your-pants drunk at the ballpark. Clark the pervy bear doesn't fix that problem.
   56. Crispix reaches boiling point with lackluster play Posted: January 15, 2014 at 10:12 PM (#4640009)
Instead of being annoyed by a bunch of drunk yahoos booing the Cubs, kids can be both annoyed and saddened by a bunch of drunk yahoos booing Clark the bear.
   57. SouthSideRyan Posted: January 15, 2014 at 10:23 PM (#4640015)
[42] is made that much better when you realize it was about a previous poster.
   58. madvillain Posted: January 16, 2014 at 03:51 AM (#4640105)
[42] is made that much better when you realize it was about a previous poster.


No ####? That forum is great, as noted it's too bad their traffic has declined. Not to get too meta, but it seems for many teams that didn't have a strong pre SB-Nation blog, the online chatter now has coalesced (for better and worse) around the SB-Nation blog. BCB is alright, it's also run by a fan that has a very specific idea of what a Cubs blog (and fandom) should be about. It's very top down, and I find that a bit boring.
   59. Cap Peterson Posted: January 16, 2014 at 04:17 AM (#4640107)
The mascot should be Curtis E. Bear, the courtesy bear.
   60. Never Give an Inge (Dave) Posted: January 16, 2014 at 01:42 PM (#4640356)

Not sure if anyone has seen this yet. If the new mascot wasn't creepy before, he is now.
   61. SouthSideRyan Posted: January 16, 2014 at 01:58 PM (#4640373)
100% agree with your take on BCB. Al can get pretty insufferable, and I really just don't like the format of SB blog comment sections.

I've definitely posted less over there and here over the past year. I can only talk about rehab projects and bounce back candidates on 1 year deals so much. They need this TV deal taken care of and Ricketts needs to start acting like he owns a team in Chicago.
   62. Bunny Vincennes Posted: January 16, 2014 at 02:24 PM (#4640409)
Not sure if anyone has seen this yet. If the new mascot wasn't creepy before, he is now.


I actually watched more of that 3+ minute rooftop ad than I would have guessed. BUT, that news segment bit was hilarious.
   63. Bunny Vincennes Posted: January 16, 2014 at 02:31 PM (#4640418)
But apparently there is a significant amount of Cubs fans that wanted the game experience to be more family friendly.


I hate to say it but the easiest way to get a more fan friendly experience is buy better seats. I know, I know, it costs a semester at Notre Dame to take a family of four to a ballgame, but its true. On the other hand don't be surprised if the old people aren't thrilled with getting up and down ever other batter to let you and the kids out.
   64. Hal Chase School of Professionalism Posted: January 16, 2014 at 03:17 PM (#4640481)
On the other hand don't be surprised if the old people aren't thrilled with getting up and down ever other batter to let you and the kids out.


They should be used to it from the legions of clowns excusing themselves to piss like racehorses for the second half of the game.

If you break the seal by the 5th, forget it.
   65. Crispix reaches boiling point with lackluster play Posted: January 16, 2014 at 03:23 PM (#4640489)
There's already 12 or 13 minor-league teams in the Chicago area. Let the drunk 20-something yahoos waste their money on the Cubs and the drunk 50-something yahoos waste their money on the White Sox, and have a family-friendly experience at the U.ß. Steel Yard.
   66. Bunny Vincennes Posted: January 16, 2014 at 03:54 PM (#4640524)
They should be used to it from the legions of clowns excusing themselves to piss like racehorses for the second half of the game.


At Wrigely the old people in the good seats are between 65-100 years old. I'm 40ish and in the section I've been frequenting of late I bet I was the youngest (non under 10) by 25 years at least. The couple I sit next to could easily be my grandparents. And they love me too, the woman always shares a cookie with me.
   67. JE (Jason) Posted: January 16, 2014 at 04:32 PM (#4640556)
Regarding Clark the Cub's schlong making the rounds on Comcast, just be thankful they don't have a similar photo of Chris Matthews lying around.
   68. 'zop sympathizes with the wrong ####### people Posted: January 16, 2014 at 05:31 PM (#4640598)
Regarding Clark the Cub's schlong making the rounds on Comcast, just be thankful they don't have a similar photo of Chris Matthews lying around.


Other news outlets, in trying to euphemistcally refer to the incident, describe the image as an "anatomically correct" rendition of Clark the Cub. Really? Do other bears that you see have human dicks?
   69. The District Attorney Posted: January 16, 2014 at 08:16 PM (#4640675)
   70. Chicago Joe Posted: January 17, 2014 at 12:49 AM (#4640791)
And don't forget Sauget, Illinois, home of the Gateway Grizzlies of the Frontier League...and 249 people.


Mystique and Aura work there now.
   71. Fancy Pants Handles lap changes with class Posted: January 17, 2014 at 03:33 AM (#4640818)
Other news outlets, in trying to euphemistcally refer to the incident, describe the image as an "anatomically correct" rendition of Clark the Cub. Really? Do other bears that you see have human dicks?

I have never taken it upon me to find out what bear penises look like. But I am glad we have such a venerable expert, on the subject of bear penises in our midst, to set us all straight.

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