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Surrounded

Today, despite our best efforts, a couple of really loud Sox fans sat down in the unoccupied seats in our row.

You know, these are the guys who, at the Cell, when the Sox are playing, say, Baltimore, and losing, they start yelling "Cubs suck!!" And you think, "Geez, you're playing the Orioles, not the Cubs." Serious inferiority complex; I really think their entire season is made if they beat the Cubs, better for them than even making the playoffs. And another thing -- if I yelled as loud as these guys for three hours, I wouldn't be able to talk for a week. By the 8th inning I wanted the Cubs to win just to shut these people up. They were doing stuff like continually yelling "Cheater!" at Sammy Sosa. Gosh, how original. And gee, as soon as the Sox lost the lead, they were out of there. Couldn't take the heat, I guess.

Fortunately, after the Cubs barely hit the ball out of the infield against Bartolo Colon, Jerry Manuel decided to move to lefty Damaso Marte and that cost them the game, as the Cubs roped three straight hits off Marte and won 2-1 to salvage the third game of the crosstown series. It also means that the Cubs still have not been swept this year, and the longest losing streak is still only three games. If Texas can somehow beat Houston tonight (click here for updated boxscore), the Cubs will move back into first place. And with the Brewers coming in, a team the Cubs have actually handled this year, with Wood and Prior going the next couple of days, it's a good time to pick up some ground. The Cubs will appreciate their first day off in two weeks, I'm sure. So will I, actually!

Carlos Zambrano threw his second really good game in a row; I'm glad he came out of this one with a win, rather than the no-decision he got in Cincinnati. Joe Borowski (who I just added to my fantasy-league team) got his 15th save, and this time he decided to go 1-2-3 rather than make it exciting. Jerry Manuel made the curious call to double-switch Tony Graffanino into the game, and then pinch-hit Brian Daubach for him; Daubach struck out. I think these AL managers don't really get the double switch.

Strategy was important again -- with the Cubs down 1-0 and two runners on and one out in the 7th, I told Mike that Damian Miller should bunt. Mike said no, not to give up the second out. Well, Miller ended the inning by hitting into a DP, just what we wanted to avoid. As it turned out things went fine -- and there was a nearly identical situation to yesterday, with Mark Grudzielanek on first and a double by Ramon Martinez into the gap, Wavin' Wendell waved around Grudzielanek. Very different situation, of course -- the tying run in the 8th, and the fact that Grudz is one of the better baserunners on the team, made this "wave-around" a no-brainer. It was still a close play at the plate.

There was a huge brawl in the RCF first row of the bleachers; ten people were ejected including two who walked out with blood streaming down their faces. What is with people, anyway? Is it just too much beer? Or are people just stupid? Or all of the above?

Brian was supposed to show up today but we all figured that he couldn't find parking after driving around, so he just went home. This is silly, when you have a $30 ticket on a beautiful day. But to each his own, I guess.

One note that I forgot from yesterday: there was a really weird mistake on the scoreboard. The team plates are actually in two pieces and someone mixed up the first half of the "OAKLAND" plate with the second half of the "CLEVELAND" plate. Therefore, San Francisco was listed as playing "OAKLALAND" yesterday. They figured it out before today's action.