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Parallel Lines

My son Mark was selected to play in a special fall baseball league through the Welles Park team he was on this summer.

Today was the first game of the Welles Park All-Stars; they're wearing black and orange uniforms, so have become the Orioles (Finally! A team he's on that I don't hate!).

And they blew a 13-0 lead and lost a tough game 16-15.

For a while tonight, I thought I might be witnessing the same thing in the Cub game, as they streaked out to a 5-0 lead, only to see Richie Sexson's 8th-inning HR off Dave Veres (just back off the DL) cut the lead to 5-4.

See, I'm too much a Cub fan. I've seen too many of these leads frittered away.

Not this time. You know, this team has started to get a swagger after last week's intense series against the Cardinals, and I say that in a good way. You need that to win championships, and again, I repeat what I said earlier this week. There is a madness to Dusty's method, but it is working. The "proven veterans" are doing their jobs, and in the 9th, when the Cubs could have gone out meekly, instead, Tom Goodwin doubled, Kenny Lofton beat out what was supposed to be a sacrifice bunt, and then Troy O'Leary, who wasn't even supposed to play tonight (Moises Alou still has the sore knee, but ought to be OK by tomorrow), hit a home run, his second this week, and so the Cubs beat the Brewers decisively 8-4, in front of the largest crowd in the history of Miller Park, 46,218, which is about 4,000 more than the listed capacity. The Brewers are expecting another sellout tomorrow, which will make this the largest-attended 3-game series in the history of Miller Park.

So many good things today -- Randall Simon, who is vilified in Milwaukee for the "Sausage Beating", hit a home run; Mark Prior didn't have his "A" game, but threw seven decent innings, and registered his 200th strikeout, likely the first of many 200-K seasons, and won his 15th game, and Joe Borowski got a day of rest after throwing three days in a row. Now JoeBo will be fresh for tomorrow if needed, then won't have to pitch again till Tuesday night in San Juan.

So we await the result of the Padres/Astros game tonight once again, to see if the Cubs can take over first place, and tomorrow afternoon I'll be off to Puerto Rico, and will report from there on the Cubs/Expos series.

Hope requests that you bring your brooms tomorrow.