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Cub Tracks wants taters

Players wearing numbers, looking outside, calling all planets, and other bullets

San Diego Padres v Chicago Cubs
I’d be hiding.
Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images

Cubs lose, get meat loaf but no mashed. We need more taters.

Maybe the bats with hits in them were already packed. This road trip frightens me. Not as much as the prospect of actually going outside for more than a minute, but it frightens me nonetheless. I hope the GLHOAT can get going again. Go buy ESPN The Magazine for naked Javier Baez pictures.

That saves me a thousand words. Let’s see what’s to read -- as always * means autoplay on™ (directions to remove for Firefox and Chrome).

Today in Baseball History:

  • 1926 - The Cardinals pick up 39-year-old Grover Cleveland Alexander on waivers from the Cubs to help in the pennant chase. He went 9-7 down the stretch.
  • 1932 - The N.L., at a meeting of club presidents, approves players wearing numbers. The A.L. had started in 1929.
  • 1936 - At Ebbets Field, Ival Goodman hits an unusual home run when his fifth-inning fly ball lands and stays on top of the scoreboard in right field. With the perched ball considered in play, the three Dodger outfielders watch the Reds' right fielder round the bases for an easy inside-the park round-tripper in their 7-2 loss to Cincinnati.
  • 1946 - Bill Veeck, Sr. heads a syndicate that purchases the Cleveland Indians.
  • 1987 - Tom Seaver abandons his comeback attempt with the Mets and retires with a career record of 311-205, an ERA of 2.86, 3,640 strikeouts, and 61 shutouts.
  • 1990 - The last-place Braves fire manager Russ Nixon and replace him with general manager Bobby Cox.
  • 1993 - On his final day as a professional baseball player, 45-year-old White Sox backstop Carlton Fisk catches his 2,226th game to surpass Bob Boone as the all-time leader.
  • 1999 - Although he has been dead for fifty-one years, Hack Wilson is awarded another RBI, increasing his major league RBI record to 191. The commissioner's office revises the total after baseball's historian Jerome Holtzman discovered the Cubs outfielder did not get credit for driving in Kiki Cuyler with a third-inning single in a game played in July 1930.
  • 2002 - Cardinals pitcher Darryl Kyle is found dead in his hotel room, causing the cancellation of that day’s game between the Redbirds and the Cubs. Joe Girardi, the Cubs' player rep, informs the Wrigley Field crowd, below:

Cubs News and Notes:

  • Carrie Muskat ( Cubs eyeing pitching ahead of Trade Deadline. "The pitching is a priority now," Jed Hoyer said.
  • CBS Chicago*: Cubs have ‘Soft Plan’ in place for Kyle Hendricks’ return but don’t reveal target date. “Time will tell if we’re going to be able to follow through with this plan,” Chris Bosio said.
  • Chris Emma (CBS Chicago*): Mike Montgomery making case to stick in Cubs’ rotation. “I felt strong throughout,” Montgomery said after his first win of the season.
  • Patrick Finley (Chicago Sun-Times*): Miguel Montero: MLB’s slide guideline ‘terrible (bleeping) rule’. “I think it’s just B.S., because as a catcher, you like those,” he remarked.
  • Marly Rivera (ESPN*): Miguel Montero: 'When I came to the U.S, I had a different mentality than the rest'. “For many players,” he said, “their No. 1 goal is to play in the major leagues. My first goal was learning English.”
  • Joe Reed (Wrigleyville-Baseball Prospectus): It’s time to talk about Victor Caratini. “...just because Caratini has flown under the radar so far, doesn’t mean that he should be ignored.”
  • Patrick Mooney (CSN Chicago*): Cubs won’t look outside for leadoff hitter when they have Anthony Rizzo and pitching priorities. “Honestly, I’m just keeping an open mind,” Maddon said. “I did not have a set number of days to do it. Just watch it and let it play out.”
  • Randy Holt (Wrigleyville-Baseball Prospectus): Anthony Rizzo: Leadoff experiment should be more than that. “...there’s nothing wrong with an on-base presence like Rizzo continuing to see action out of the number one spot in the batting order, no matter what his skill set says he should be.”
  • Marly Rivera (ESPN*): Javier Baez on the art of the tag. It helps that he’s secretly left-handed. He’s thought it out, too.
  • Michael Cerami (Bleacher Nation): Digging into the contact troubles in Kris Bryant’s recent mini-slump. Plate discipline slumps, too.
  • Bruce Levine (CBS Chicago*): Ian Happ flashing abilities while still in development mode. “The ball comes off of his bat different,” manager Joe Maddon said. “It comes off hot and loud. As he gets more acquainted with the league, I believe you will see a higher batting average.”
  • John Perrotto (FanRag Sports): Cubs rookie Ian Happ potential star despite coming from football country. “He’s a very impressive young player,” Cubs manager Joe Maddon said. “And he’s just getting started.”
  • Patrick Mooney (CSN Chicago*): Joe Maddon's up-and-down roller coaster with Cubs: 'I'm enjoying it in a perverse way'. “Of course, I’d rather we be 10 games up, but I’m good with what’s going on right now, because it is challenging, and every year presents differently,” he added.
  • Bruce Levine (CBS Chicago*)” Joe Maddon believes in benefits of meditation. “This is something I have been in touch with for a bit,” Maddon said.
  • Jeff Arnold (Chicago Sun-Times*): Jed Hoyer says front office owes players patience. “I think we know we have the talent, we know the guys care, it’s just a matter of kind of finding our groove and getting it together. I think we will,” he said.
  • WGN-TV: Wife of Cubs’ Addison Russell files for divorce, declines interview with MLB over abuse allegations. Melisa Russell is filing for divorce, according to the law firm representing her in the proceedings.
  • Joe Seidel (Chicago Sun-Times*): No prison time for ex-cop tied to Wrigleyville rooftop scheme. Calling it “the break of your life,” a federal judge handed no prison time Tuesday to Richard Zasiebida.

Food for thought:

  • Mary Beth Griggs (Popular Science): Why go to Mars when you can telecommute there instead. Long distance is the next best thing to being there.
  • Mindy Weisberger (Live Science) Is it time to rethink how we search for alien life? “...experts suspect that intelligent extraterrestrial life could be advanced in ways that would stymie current efforts to find them,” says Seth Shostak.
  • Marshall Shepherd (Forbes): The science of why it's too hot for some planes to fly in the southwest U.S. It’s a dry heat™.

Thanks for reading — see you Sunday, if I don’t melt.