NL Central, The Division That Nobody Wants

by

The Cubs have played like shit for much of this season, but still find themselves only 2-1/2 games out of first place. Last year this division got a bad rap, but when you add up all the numbers, it was tops in the NL in total wins.

This year is a different story though. At this time, not only the Cubs, but the rest of the division has collectively sucked. No team has been able to put a good string of wins together and start to pull away from the rest of the pack.

It’s there for the taking, but the Cubs have to start getting their shit together. It’s not early anymore.

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51 Responses to “NL Central, The Division That Nobody Wants”

  1. Dave Says:

    This division is like the NL West of 2007-2008. The winner might even get in with a losing record.

    The Junior Circuit is coming up, and the Cubs did poorly against the AL last year for the most part, as did the rest of the division as a whole. It will be interesting to see at the end of Interleague play where everyone stands.

  2. Matt Stairs Superfan Says:

    Dave, I think this division will be the first to 85 wins and the prize is yours kind. I agree though. Nobody wants this division. One of these teams though I bet in the next few weeks will get on a streak.

  3. chucky Says:

    The way the Cubs hit in that Little League park in Houston tells me they don’t this division. Goddamn Houstons pitching isn’t that fucking good.

  4. erniesarmy Says:

    My, my, my, Cubs blow another game to the Astros today, 2 – 1 in 13.

    Oh, wait, ladies and gentleman, I think I see Cubs manager Lou Piniella. Let’s see if we can get him to comment on this latest, with more to come, loss.

    Me: Lou, what happened out there, would you care to tell us why you, and your pathetic team STINK???

    Lou: “What can I do? I don’t know what to do.” (actual quote!)

    Me: Thank you Lou, I knew you had something insightful, something intelligent, something positive to say about your teams performance.

    With managers like this, and Durocher, and Kennedy, and Trebelhorne, and Lefevbre, and Fry, and Zimmer, and Baker, I just can’t seem to figure out how the Cubs haven’t won a World Series in 102 freakin years. (that was sarcasm for all the sheep out there, because I know you get confused)

    The Chicago Cubs, the poorest run franchise in the history of professional sports, and the laughingstock of every sports fan in the world – congratulations for being CLOWNS!

  5. MadCityMac Says:

    Ernie,

    SO well put!!

  6. Sandberg23 Says:

    The stats on that 8 game road trip pitched by Cubs starters. Quality start in every game. 2 runs was the most given up in any start. But yet they still only went 4-4. In that time only 2 wins we’re accumulated by the starters. The other games were all no decisions, mostly cause there was no hitting and of course sprinkle in the occasional bullpen implosion as well. How can a team that has no hitting and no bullpen going to make the playoffs?? Oh yeah that’s right they don’t!! The offense is fucking HORRIBLE. And I don’t wanna hear when Aramis comes back all will be fine. He’s a good hitter but lets face it he’s not a superstar player that is going to change how the rest of the lineup hits. This is still a fucking mess and the blood is on LOU’s and Hendry’s hands. Them two made these changes to the team.
    BTW, can we start complaining about Soriano batting leadoff again??!! All I every hear from Lou or people in the media is that Soriano struggles batting anywhere else in the lineup. Well he’s fucking struggling batting leadoff right now isn’t he. So what’s the excuse for that??? I haven’t heard Lou say a damn thing about it either. You’re goddamn leadoff hitter is batting .235 with a OB of barely over .300. Change something already jesus!! Bat fucking Theriot or Fuk/Johnson there. Get someone who has a high on base percentage there that can get on base. So then Sore-anus can hit his occasionaly home run. That’s all he hits anyways so put him in a actualy power spot. Especially since you don’t have a-ram.

  7. chucky Says:

    You’re on target, Sandberg. My big worry with Ramirez is when he returns, he’ll hit the same wall Derrick Lee hit after his broken wrist. Don’t think he’ll be the same player as before. You’re smoking crack if you think that.

    And Ernie…were you interviewing Lou Piniella or Dustrag Baker? I couldn’t tell.

    BAHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  8. E=MC2 Says:

    Greetings and Salutations,

    To date, this particular thread makes good sense. I must concur with most if not all positions. Most refreshing and I Thank You for that.

    I previously signed in as EMC=2…it was a test of sorts. I am somewhat disappointed — but not surprised — that the sheeple infiltrators didn’t pounce on it and question (or ridicule) me, given their utter distaste for spelling, punctuation, grammar errors…and the like. Given the amount of support that they lavish upon the current organization and it’s leadership, it is apparent that they easily overlook even the smallest errors.

    I fervently hope that they remain a safe distance from the laboratory!

    Fondly, Albert

  9. genrebuster Says:

    “The Chicago Cubs, the poorest run franchise in the history of professional sports, and the laughingstock of every sports fan in the world – congratulations for being CLOWNS!”

    I think Ernie nailed it, except “CLOWNS” might be too kind!

    HA HA HA HA HA

  10. erniesarmy Says:

    “I think Ernie nailed it, except “CLOWNS” might be too kind!”

    I know, Genre, but I didn’t want to paint the Ryan Sandbergs, Ernie Banks, Billy Williams, Ron Santos, Rick Sutcliffes, and Andre Dawsons with the same brush as the IDIOTS that run this franchise.

    When the Boston Red Sox were finally sold to John Henry, the machinations for one of the finest run organizations in baseball was started. They have won two (and probably will make it three this year) World Series titles, after having gone almost as long as the Cubs without winning one.

    That is what the Cubs have to do – get new ownership and start over!!!

  11. ron santo's legs Says:

    does anybody here believe that if this franchise can just get rid of all the scum players they have whether being trading away or releasing they could be good someday?

    my answer would be yes. that is what Florida did twice and won championships within 6 years of each of them. i would be totally fine with that. i think that is the only solution now.

  12. ron santo's legs Says:

    to follow up on my last post…

    the basic plan is to dump payroll and get as many prospects back as possible. it might take a couple years to get all the prospects in and ready to go, but i would be ok with that. i thought they should have done that right after the 05 and 06 seasons.

  13. erniesarmy Says:

    ron santo’s legs

    I like what you are saying, but that won’t happen with this organization as presently assembled. Get new ownership who will hire some people who can actually recognize talent, then what you suggest would be a winner.

  14. robert Says:

    Milton fucking Bradley

    Runners at first and third one out a pop fly he catches it stands there and poses , then throws the ball into the stands… allowing the twins to get another run….great move moe hendry…

  15. genrebuster Says:

    “That’s life,” Bradley said. “These people have high expectations. I have high expectations for myself. I never made a mistake like that [losing track of the outs] in my life. Sue me.”

    Another great move by Hendry, bringing the brilliant mind and mindset of one Milton Bradley to the Cubs. What a shitty attitude he has, the fact that he will likely get away with a comment like that is why I expect this team to FAIL: lack of accountability. IMOP, players like Soriano and Bradley do more to hurt a team than help over a 162 game season. Team players?

    FAILURE is definitely on track at the moment…for the 102nd time in 102 FUCKING YEARS.

    Anybody offended by my comments? Oh well, “that’s life…sue me!”

    Also, I heard throughthe grapevine that “Lovable Losers” has just been replaced by “PATHETIC CLOWNS”!

  16. genrebuster Says:

    Also, Lou has proven that he is completely “out of touch”.

    http://sports.espn.go.com/mlb/recap?gameId=290612116

    “It didn’t cost us a run but you’ve got to be in the game, you’ve got to know how many outs there are,” Cubs manager Lou Piniella said. “Do we need to go over math? One … two … three … I don’t know what else to say. I’m sure he’s somewhat embarrassed by it.”

    Then again, maybe not.

    “I wasn’t embarrassed,” Bradley said. “I’ve done a whole lot of [other] things to be embarrassed about. The run was going to score and a fan got a souvenir. I just made a mistake. I guess I’ll be in the bloopers.”

    Jackoff Jones, watch your back!

  17. robert Says:

    these quotes prove this team does not give a shit

  18. erniesarmy Says:

    robert Says:
    June 12, 2009 at 9:19 pm
    these quotes prove this team does not give a shit
    ………………………
    That’s because no one in this crappy organization does!

  19. ksmc2000 Says:

    genre, I was thinking the same thing about Bradley’s play and attitude. He is gonna make the Jackass Jones signing look like a good deal. The Milton Bradley experiment will have a very ugly ending. He will never be able to handle all the negative shit that will come his way without doing something stupid.

  20. genrebuster Says:

    ksmc, I have just one more thing to add re: Milton Bradley….

    tick tock…

  21. chucky Says:

    BOOM!!!!!

  22. robert Says:

    great news the cubs are going to go after pedro martinez…that will give the sheeple hope

    sheeple quote Derekk Lee and Milton Bradley will hit there past has proven it….

    If that is a fact why dont the Cubs go out and sign Reggie Jackson he always hit in October..

  23. MadCityMac Says:

    I was watching the game at the bar and couldn’t believe dumb-shit Bradley posing after the catch, then chucking the ball into the seats. Watching Lee imploring Bradley to throw the ball in was just fucking priceless. I really think Bradley is the symbol of this pathetic organization. At least it seemed some of the fans cared, creaming at Bradley. Obviously not sheeple.

    By the way, anybody know why the Cubs put up the “W” and “L” flags? So sheeple know who won or lost the game.

  24. MadCityMac Says:

    screaming, not creaming. Geez…

  25. Dave Says:

    Tons of trade rumors flying around right now. Ones including people like Matt Halladay(sp) and Pedro Martinez coming to the organization. I dunno about Pedro, but Halladay could be interesting. Anyway, I would leave this team alone for now, let the impending failure take place, and worry about it for 2010. Its getting to be pretty late for hope and the change that would bring about it.

  26. chucky Says:

    Didn’t Halladay get injured yesterday? A groin injury or something?

  27. Irish Yeti Says:

    Roy Halladay got hurt… not this Matt character

  28. erniesarmy Says:

    I have been watching the Cubs for 45 years, and I cannot remember a worse hitting team. In the past, their problems were always pitching, this is the first time in my memory it’s hitting.

    One further thought, I think it is entirely possible, even probable, that Milton Bradely has poisoned that clubhouse to such an extent that everybody is uptight, and either playing angry, or playing out the season in hopes that can hook up with another team through trade or free agency.

    The entire ballclub looks like they’re just going through the motions.

    I played sports in High School and college, and whenever there was someone with Bradley’s attitude it angered everyone to the point that the consensus was, “Hey, if he wants to do x, let him do it on his own, I ‘m not helping him.”

  29. erniesarmy Says:

    One other thing, a guy by the name of “Aaron” over at “Chicago Cubs Online” (a good site, by the way, no sheep), had some very good ideas for trades –

    “I’m starting these rumors right here…hopefully one or two actually pan out:

    Option #1: Derrek Lee and Soriano to Mets for: Carlos Beltran

    solves Mets 1B problem, and gives them Soriano to replace Beltran. We pay the remainder of Lee’s contract, and half of Soriano’s to make it more worthwhile to them.

    Option #2: Derrek Lee and Sean Marshall to Giants for Matt Cain (if Giants pick up all of Lee’s contract)

    solves Giants 1B need

    Option #3: Lee, Marshall, Fontenot, and Soriano to Angels for Matthews Jr. (to off-set part of Soriano’s contract), Brandon Wood, Sean Rodriguez, Chris Pettit, and Trevor Bell

    solves their 1B issues, OF issues (with Vlad being hurt), pitching shortage, and gets rid of Matthews contract. They also were players with Lee and Soriano when they were free agents, so there’s interest on their part. The get a solid infielder in Fontenot as well, and we get younger prospects up the middle in Rodriguez and Wood, would could split SS and 2B with us.

    Option #4: Lee, Colvin, Flaherty, Samardzija, Fontenot, Marshall, Fukudome (so he can be on the west coast closer to Japan), Marquez Smith and Jay Jackson for Jake Peavy and Adrian Gonzalez

    solves their money problems with Lee coming off the books next year, and he’ll be with his original team I believe…We can pay half of Fukudome’s contract and with the large Asian population on the West Coast, they’ll draw more fans to the park. They get good young pitching in return, which solves their problem, and they get solid young infielders and Colvin to help out in the field.

    Finally, sit Bradley’s ass on the bench, and let him know that we won’t take his crap anymore, and his play on the field warrants a benching…that way he only has 2 yrs with us. DFA Miles, and trade away Gregg, Heilman, Harden (b/c he’s a FA after the season), and if we have to include Theriot in any of the above deals, then so be it.

    I’m sick of this team, and we need changes immediately. I also think Soto should be a trade candidate, because as he gets older, his fat ass is going to be an even bigger problem…literally”

    None of them will happen, because no one wants those guys on their team, but some of those moves would be pretty exciting, esp. the one for Peavey and Gonzalez.

    What do you guys think?

  30. Matt Stairs Superfan Says:

    That team in Washington may suck, but at least their organization “gets it”.

    http://msn.foxsports.com/mlb/story/9677990/Sources:-Acta-out-as-Nats%27-skip-soon,-Riggleman-in

    When something hasn’t worked for a certain period of time, something needs to change. Too bad the greedy bastards at the Trib don’t get it.

    By the way, it gives me a chuckle with who Washington is replacing their manager with.

  31. chucky Says:

    Ernie

    Re: Option 3. Wasn’t Matthews here during the trainwreck Dustrag Baker era. I think he was one of his malcontent disciples. If that is true, I wouldn’t want him anywhere near Wrigley. Even to get rid of Lee and Bradley.

  32. erniesarmy Says:

    Chucky –

    “Re: Option 3. Wasn’t Matthews here during the trainwreck Dustrag Baker era. I think he was one of his malcontent disciples.”

    No, he was with the Cubs during the 2000-2001 season, the Don Baylor era.

    Anyway, I agree with you, I live here in L.A., and Matthews has been nothing but a headache for Scioscia.

    Anyway, some of those other options are pretty intriguing, yes? Maybe the Cubs should fire Hendry, and hire Aaron. At least he’s thinking!

  33. chucky Says:

    Yeah, some of those are intriguing. But I think there was a cap put on Hendry. He can’t spent any more money. Period. And he may have to sell when Ricketts takes control.

    Things have gotten VERY ugly around here.

  34. robert Says:

    1 down gerald perry has been fired

  35. captain1kirk Says:

    Hendry has done a masterfull job of assembling a great bunch of losers. The team chemisrty spells defeat. Trading DeRosa was essential in order to complete the masterpiece with the addition of Milton Bradley.

    Now we have a new hitting coach. Oh my the whole bunch of rich professionals can’t hit because of the coach? Maybe they should have given Zambrano the job.

    Lou appears to me to be a lame duck. I don’t see any fire in him or his team except for the nut case “Z”.

    Gregg, Bradley great additions. I am glad that this team is not going to the playoffs it would be 4 and out again.

    Leave this team for the sheeple I think I will find a real team with a real organization, thic Cub crap is getting old.

  36. Nemo Says:

    So, Kirk, should he have KEPT Gerald Perry? It needed to be done-he was fucking useless. Unfortunately, that is probably ALL that will get done and we all know that so much more needs to be done. The Twins demoted their pitcher who shut out the Cubs yesterday to AAA. THAT is how much respect the Cubs offense has. PATHETIC.

  37. captain1kirk Says:

    D Lee has turned into a cheap imitation of Mark Grace from a triple crown threat to this??? Do you think maybe its not the coach? Could D Lee have been juiced???

    Hendry is the useless one. Hendry gives stupid people a bad name.

    They should have backed up the truck and unloaded a bunch of these bums last year while they still had value. Instead they pulled up the truck and picked up the biggest bum in baseball.

    FIRE JIM HENDRY!

    Baaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa Baaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa Baaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa

  38. morpheus Says:

    The Cubs have seemingly played some of the worst baseball in baseball history this year. However, I point you to this:

    http://mlb.mlb.com/mlb/standings/index.jsp

    2.5 games back. Feels like more, doesn’t it? Still, all you have to do is get to the playoffs and anything can happen. I point you to the Cardinals in 2006, who only won 83 games during the regular season, as the most recent example of this.

  39. Dr. Kenneth Noisewater Says:

    Those are some colassally retarded trade proposals.

  40. Sandberg23 Says:

    Morpheus. We all understand that if you make the playoffs anything can happen, but please don’t use the ’06 Cardinals or any other team for that matter who has “shocked the world” and won something against all odds. There is a reason it is such a suprise when this happens because it dosen’t happen very often at all. I can use the opposite example, look at the ’07 Cubs. They won 85 games in a crap ass division and what happened to them? They got swept right on out of the playoffs. The examples that you can go off of are right now. And right now this team is no where close to making a run at winning a championship let a lone winning they’re pathetic division as it is. Something needs changed and changed soon cause this group the way things are is not gonna get it done. If they cannot add a bat somehow then that lineup needs shaken up. Especially right at the top. Soriano needs to get out of the leadoff spot as soon as possible and left out of it for a while to see if someone else can do better. Johnson needs to start more. Fuk is going into his tailspin again looking horrid at the plate.

  41. Sandberg23 Says:

    Bat Johnson leadoff, Theriot 2nd, Bradley 3rd, Soriano cleanup, Lee 5th, Fontenot 6th, Soto 7th & Anybody but miles playing 2nd 8th in the lineup. Except when Z pitches then you bat him 8th. How about that for some suggestions Lou since you are out of ideas anymore with the lineup.

  42. genrebuster Says:

    Dr. Kenny.

    I’m sorry, but Mitch is going to be very upset with you: it’s “colossal”.

    Also, many of us would love to hear your ideas for trade proposals if you can make time between patients.

    Question: do you treat people…or are you a veterinarian?

    If the latter, you might find other blogs more interesting/comfortable than this one, as most of the regulars here have little patience for sheeple.

    Good day sir.

    Morpheus, we see the stats…and we see the makeup of this team. If more CHANGES aren’t made soon, this team will be lucky to make the playoffs…in fact, some might say that the Cubs will be lucky to make the playoffs under any scenario.

    The two stats I can’t get out of my mind are these:

    1. The Cubs haven’t won a World Series since 1908.
    2. The Cubs haven’t played in a World Series since 1945.

    Hope springs eternal, and you are correct: anything can happen in a 7-game playoff. But there is a big elephant in the room and I bet that this current group of players will be unable to ignore it…should they make it that far.

    The Cubs organization is PATHETIC…it’s a FACT.

    Here is an interesting article on the Boston Red Sox organization, maybe the rumored new Cub owner(s) will read it:

    http://www.baseballamerica.com/today/prospects/rankings/organization-top-10-prospects/2009/267146.html

    FIRE JIM HENDRY.

  43. morpheus Says:

    Sandberg23,

    The 2009 Cubs are 2.5 games out of first place, and they have played horribly, with most regular players well below career norms for pretty much the entire season. I am a strong believer in mean reversion, as most have seen here. My point is that even though they have been seemingly awful and “no where close to making a run at winning a championship let a lone winning they’re pathetic division as it is” they are still only 2.5 games out of first place and sitting at a .500 winning percentage. This is not difficult to understand – if just some portion of the Cubs’ players reverts to career rate statistics, then the Cubs will start winning more games. And the Brewers and Cardinals have played as well as one could expect them to play, again given career norms.

    As for your second post… I think we agree on “anybody but Miles” – that guy’s a complete waste of space.

  44. Dr. Kenneth Noisewater Says:

    “Dr. Kenny.

    I’m sorry, but Mitch is going to be very upset with you: it’s “colossal”.

    Also, many of us would love to hear your ideas for trade proposals if you can make time between patients.

    Question: do you treat people…or are you a veterinarian?

    If the latter, you might find other blogs more interesting/comfortable than this one, as most of the regulars here have little patience for sheeple.

    Good day sir.”

    I see what you did there. It’s cute because you think I’m a real doctor. I do apologize for misspelling “colossally,” though. That’s my bad.

    And, you want to hear my trade proposals? Too bad. I don’t have any because I’m not in the business of making up fairy tale trades. Do you really think the Padres are going to trade Adrian Gonzales AND Jake Peavy? Really?

  45. robert Says:

    Bob Brenly bought up yesterday why this team will not win the world series and why this team has been swept out of the playoffs the last two years…

    Carlos Gomez hit a two out double stole second and scored on a bunt buy Nick Punto… Brenly then said I dont want to hear any complaints about why the cubs dont do that..the reason is they have no one who can bunt successfully. People who have been on this site from the begining have been saying this team cannot play fundamental baseball…that is why this team looses a ton of one run games and looses in the playoffs..

  46. genrebuster Says:

    “I see what you did there. It’s cute because you think I’m a real doctor.”

    NO…I don’t think you are a real doctor.

    “I do apologize for misspelling “colossally,” though. That’s my bad.”

    No apology necessary, that was an inside joke for the long-time regulars…it happens at HJE or any other established blog, too.

    “And, you want to hear my trade proposals? Too bad. I don’t have any because I’m not in the business of making up fairy tale trades. Do you really think the Padres are going to trade Adrian Gonzales AND Jake Peavy? Really?”

    No, I don’t expect that trade (Gonzales and Peavy). Besides, those weren’t my trade proposals.

  47. Dr. Kenneth Noisewater Says:

    “it happens at HJE or any other established blog, too.”

    Heh…now, THAT’S cute.

  48. genrebuster Says:

    😉

  49. genrebuster Says:

    On a different note: how many days until Milton Bradley assaults the water cooler (or worse)?

  50. chucky Says:

    genre

    Don’t you mean how many days until the water cooler beats up Milton Bradley? I think he’s due to be injured again, isn’t he?

  51. robert Says:

    genre I clicked on your link and was looking at the red sox last ten number 1 picks 7 of them are in the majors. Of the cubs last ten 2 have made the majors 3 were released in Spring training

SHOW DA FIRE AND PASSION, MY FRENDT!

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