Off-Day Fun

We could all use some, right?

A bleacher semi-regular named David decided, beginning last year, to keep track of what color uniform the Cubs wore each day, and whether they won or lost. Monday, he gave me a copy of this year's list. Yes, this is obsessive behavior. I mention this to point out that I am not responsible for this list, only passing it along to you.

If you don't already know this, Cub tradition in recent years has been to allow that day's starting pitcher to choose the jersey for the club to wear. Typically, Carlos Zambrano always chooses blue; Greg Maddux and Mark Prior always choose pinstripes (or gray on the road), and other pitchers vary.

So far this year, the club records with different colored jerseys are as follows:

  • Home pinstripes, 18-19
  • Home blue, 15-17
  • Road gray, 13-16
  • Road blue, 17-18
So basically, the Cubs have not played well no matter what shirt they wear. You're going to say this is "master of the obvious", but it didn't necessarily have to work out that way. In fact, I'd have thought the "road blue" would have done better, because Maddux decided to wear the blue jersey on the West Coast trip in June, to keep up the winning streak there. (It worked -- they won twice with Maddux wearing the blue.)

Thanks to Rob at the 6-4-2 Dodger blog for pointing out that the Cubs have now been one-hit at Wrigley Field five times in the last ten years.

The one that came closest to being a no-hitter was thrown by Alex Fernandez of the Marlins on April 10, 1997. It was brutally cold that day -- 37 degrees, cloudy, windy -- and after Dave Hansen broke up the no-hitter with one out in the 9th, the Cubs loaded the bases on errors by Bobby Bonilla (playing 3B!) and Edgar Renteria, but could not score, and lost 1-0 when Ryne Sandberg struck out to end the game. That pretty much set the tone for the '97 season.

Finally, the recently-concluded series between the Cubs and Dodgers featured both teams wearing jerseys without names on the back, as LA has removed names from both home and road shirts this year.

The Cubs had names on the backs of their home uniforms from 1992-2004 (hmmm... exactly coinciding with Sammy Sosa's tenure with the team... hmmmm...), and prior to that, I remember all NL teams having names on the backs of their road jerseys dating back at least to the late 1970's.

So, the question is: when was the last time, before this week, when a game was played at Wrigley Field when BOTH teams had no names on their shirts?

If anyone out there has a definitive answer to this question, inquiring minds -- who don't have anything better to do on a day off with the Cubs out of the race -- want to know.

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