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All Sammy, All The Time

Until this deal -- or deals, as I shall explain -- is finalized, I'm going to obsess a little about the Sammy-to-Baltimore trade... this is bigger than the Nomar trade, in many ways it can be argued that this is the biggest name involved in a Cubs trade since they dealt away Ron Santo and Billy Williams in the mid-1970's.

Yes, that's right, those two beloved Cubs, who we think of as bleeding Cubbie blue, didn't finish their careers on the North Side. Santo wore the mid-70's goofy-looking red pinstripes of the White Sox, while Billy was garbed in Charlie Finley's gold-and-green of the Oakland Athletics -- and became the only one of the much-loved Cubs of that era to make the postseason, with the 1975 A's (he didn't distinguish himself, going 0-for-7).

I got e-mail from Mike today, summing up his thoughts on the Sosa deal, and I think speaking for many of us, myself included:

The Trib said it perfectly in their headlines, this is a divorce. Despite the
painted-on good vibes displayed by Baker and Hendry at the convention, the differences were apparently irreconcilable. In this case, the correct aggrieved party is being cut loose. If speculation is in order, perhaps the purported meetings fell through, or were rejected. The goods we'll be getting in exchange do not seem of equal value, but the leavetaking is everything.

As to his legacy, a lot of the leftover bitterness will depend on his subsequent performance. If this does rejuvenate him, and he has two or three banner seasons, seasons he could as well have had here if he behaved less like a jerk, then it will be more difficult to be gracious. At this point, the greatest Cub in history is either Banks or Sosa, the tossup to be resolved by how this separation matures.

I do have to agree that I would not have matched either the Beltran or proposed Detroit-Ordonez deals.

Nor would I, and that brings me to the discussion of "deals", plural, because the Aubrey Huff rumors persist, and I am led to believe are more serious than might have been thought earlier today.

Let us hope this happens. Huff's a terrific player and would be a younger, cheaper, lefthanded, nicer version of Sammy Sosa.

We await developments.