Open Thread: Cubs vs. Rockies, Sunday 8/21

I have been accused in several places of being a pollyanna who, because I won't give up on this season, am "actively contributing" to the Cubs' problems.

This is silly. First of all, I'm not here to moderate a bitchfest. Second, I'm not going to play Jay Mariotti. There's more than enough of him right where he is, thankyouverymuch, and if anyone else desires to play Mariotti-wannabe, be my guest. I won't do it. It's just not in my nature.

I'm well aware of the shortcomings of this team, and yes, their playoff chances stand at a little over 2%, pretty darn small.

But I will NOT let these sad facts suck all the enjoyment of baseball out of me. When this season ends -- however it ends -- we can and will talk about how to improve the Cubs so that 2006 can be the season we've all dreamed of.

Random statistic: Tom Skilling's weather page in today's Tribune says that the 2005 Cubs are 14-19 with the wind blowing in, 16-11 with the wind blowing out. This should surprise no one.

Today's Starting Pitchers
Greg Maddux
G. Maddux
Cubs
vs. Jeff Francis
J. Francis
Rockies
10-9 W-L 11-9
4.40 ERA 5.87
101 SO 104
28 BB 55
21 HR 19

Maddux, as has been his pattern the last few years, is throwing much better in the second half (3.75 ERA since the All-Star break, and a 2.75 ERA so far in August) than in the first (4.67 ERA).

The Rockies' Canadian-born pitcher, who Rox fans have tagged "Jeff Franchise", has odd pitching splits: 8-4, 4.72 at Coors, 3-5, 7.24 on the road. The Cubs beat him up pretty good at Wrigley Field in May.

Enjoy the game. Really. I mean it!

Discuss amongst yourselves.

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