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Cub Tracks’ rock rolls back down

Quixotic quest ends in extras, and other bullets

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Javy Jug
Jim Young-USA TODAY Sports

Damn. Just damn. Woulda shoulda coulda. So many opportunities. Terrence Gore shouldn’t even be issued a real bat. Just send him up there with a pool noodle. Let’s get started with the Bryce Harper rumors again, right away. Catch a jump on the silly season and get right into the swing of things. Gotta fix that drive-by offense, you know.

I’m forced to root for them. I hate everyone else. I’m for Rockies vs. A’s. Not that I’ll watch, but I’ll hear the news from afar, as it were.

Cuz I’m baseballed out for the year. I’m heartsick and soul-numb and full of random trigger-points...even more so than usual.

This is going to be interesting. Heads are gonna roll and we all know it. I bet Chili Davis feels real secure. The pitching certainly wasn’t the problem. But the pitching staff’s Herculean efforts to allow no runs at all, ever, ultimately became Sisyphean, and the rock grew ever heavier as the season progressed, until the point where the rock rolled back.

So Kyle Schwarber and Jason Heyward are certain to be hitting the rails along with Addison Russell and Joe Maddon, and Yu Darvish will be sold to an unidentified Japanese fishing trawler as cut bait. Manny Machado is shortly to join the team along with Harper, and probably Patrick Corbin as well because he’s under 30 and the best free-agent starter on the market and it’s not our money anyway.

I preferred not to see that, so I turned the game off. I turned Twitter off too — the hate was getting as thick as the haters, and now I need a Javy Jug. I have so much hate that I’m watching political coverage at 2:15 am on a Wednesday morning, and it’s soothing.

There’s a growling noise in this room, and I suspect it’s coming from me as I try to resist being dragged down by the stone. The bright spot is that maybe the Cubs can go back to being underdogs. Is that a bright spot? I dunno. I’m gonna put all the meatball takes on my Prince spaghetti, Anthony, as it’s Hump Dayyyy. Yeah, you know what day it is. Let’s hump that rock back up the mountain, shall we?

As always * means autoplay on, or annoying ads, or both (directions to remove for Firefox and Chrome).

Cubs News and Notes:

  • Morgan Greene (Chicago Tribune* {$}): Wildly protracted wild card ends in disappointment for fans. ““We’re exhausted,” said one fan, who shook his head and kept walking.”
  • Gordon Wittenmyer (Chicago Sun-Times* {$}): Successful? Not this Cubs season, team says: ‘We lost’. “There’s a lot of positives,” Albert Almora said. “But it’s not a success unless we win. That’s just the mindset we have here.”
  • Evan Altman (Cubs Insider): Report: Maddon could be out with Wild Card loss, 3 potential successors named. “During his appearance on 1070 The Fan’s Dan Dakich Show, NBC Sports Chicago’s David Kaplan cited a well-known baseball insider who said chances are “better than 50 percent” that Maddon would be relieved of his duties if the Cubs fall to the Rockies.”
  • Steve Greenberg (Chicago Sun-Times* {$}): Should he stay or should he go? Cubs players have manager Joe Maddon’s back. “I just don’t see where he’s going to get heat from,” Anthony Rizzo said. “I think he’s managed his [expletive] off this year.”
  • David Haugh (Chicago Tribune* {$}): The only certainty for the Cubs is change, a necessity after they exit meekly from the playoffs. “For a second straight day, a visiting team frolicked on the Cubs’ home turf...”
  • Steve Greenberg (Chicago Sun-Times* {$}): Cubs’ bats didn’t back him up, but starter Jon Lester was more than good enough. “Young Rockies left-hander Kyle Freeland was outstanding, at times dazzling, but the 34-year-old Lester more than held up his end of things.”
  • Carrie Muskat (*): Cubs’ season ends after wild, dramatic night. “The Cubs called on starters Cole Hamels and Kyle Hendricks to back up Lester, but they couldn’t stop the Rockies, who apparently don’t need much sleep.”
  • Tony Andracki (NBC Sports Chicago*): Cubs’ season comes to a screeching halt after just one playoff game. “For the second straight day, the Cubs managed to score just one run in a high-stakes October game...”
  • Michael Cerami (Bleacher Nation): The inconsistent Cubs offense became more consistent in September…in a bad way. “ September, the highs weren’t as high and the lows were much lower for the Cubs...”
  • Matt Monaghan (*): Terrance Gore’s wild run around the bases impressed fastest man alive Billy Hamilton. Props to Gore.
  • AP via ESPN: Rob Manfred says no timetable on finishing Addison Russell investigation. “Right now, we’re kind of going day by day,” Manfred said.
  • Gordon Wittenmyer (Chicago Sun-Times* {$}): Commissioner: MLB could rule on Russell case this month. “I think we will have a final decision shortly,” said Rob Manfred who said a ruling by the end of the postseason is “conceivable.”
  • Patrick Mooney (The Athletic {$}): MLB commissioner: Ruling coming soon in Addison Russell case. “The sense around the team is that Russell has already played his final game in a Cubs uniform...”
  • Daniel Kramer (*): Voting underway for Hank Aaron Awards. Javier Baez is a nominee.
  • Grant Brisbee (SB Nation): The unwritten rules of breaking up a double play with a tender embrace. “Javier Baez appreciates Nolan Arenado, who appreciates Javier Baez. We can all relate.”
  • Robert O’Connell (The Atlantic): The Chicago Cubs’ best player can do it all. “Báez stands out for his incredible versatility—a trait not common to, or usually required of, MLB superstars.”
  • Thomas Harrigan (*): Players set to become free agents in 2018-19 offseason. Lots of 30+ guys and Bryce Harper.

Food for thought:

Thanks for reading.