Tyler Olson, you’ll be unsurprised to know, has been sent to Iowa, along with the gopher balls, and Alec Mills, who has been looking a little tired lately, has gone along to keep him company. Jharel Cotton, who has been tearing up Triple-A, is heading to the Big Apple stat, along with Trevor Megill, the big guy with the big fastball.
The Blue Jays, feeling like they’re still in the hunt at 43-38, acquired the services of outfielders Josh Rojas and Guillermo Heredia from the 33-47 Pirates, sending outfielder Teoscar Hernandez to Pittsburgh.
The Dodgers, apparently desperate at 46-35, and with nobody really nipping at their heels, sent Kiké Hernandez and Terrance Gore to 38-43 St. Louis for good old Dexter Fowler, who had fallen on hard times and was at Double-A, stranded after an injury assignment, and Kwang-hyun Kim. The Cubs and Cardinals also exchanged A-ball pitchers, for what that’s worth, as I had to work to make the deals reasonable. The Cardinals look to be on the verge of selling cheap and they have some people the Cubs might like. I’ll be watching.
The Cubs are still on top of the NL Central. Here’s the current standings:
And on that note, let’s check in with simCubs manager Brandon Palmer:
CT — Good afternoon, Brandon. How are things?
BP — Smashing! Oh wait, I forgot, that was last week. This week I’m trying to figure out the difference between a Bronx and a Brooklyn accent. Brooklyn is more dese, dem, dose, it seems, and the Bronx had embedded raspberry, that little honk. The Bronx is said to have more Spanish influence, I read somewhere.But then the thing I read talks about Fuhgeddaboutit, which I always thought was Joisey. But then North Jersey is a New Yawk-style of speech. It’s confusing ... especially when people says there’s no Brooklyn accent, which would puzzle Leo Gorcey and Ben Grimm, not to mention Aunt Petunia. And of course the other boroughs have their own flavor.
Seriously, though, I can’t complain. We’re 33 games over .500 in a tough division in a tough league and we’re spending the weekend in nice digs in the Bronx, have money to spend, and don’t have to wear masks or social distance or anything like that because we’re not actually real. Even the team colors are pigments of someone’s imagination.
CT — That’s hilarious. And spot-on, I must say. I’ve spent a bit of time in the Apple and of course have seen all of the films. Isn’t the Bowery in Manhattan though? It was the main drag a long time ago ...
BP — Yes, you’re right. But Gorcey and Huntz Hall typified and solidified that lower-class accent that came to symbolize the hoodlum element, where Manhattan is seen as more upscale. For that matter, Yancey street is also in Manhattan, but it’s across the bridge from Brooklyn, via the Williamsburg bridge. I was just there a little while ago. I’m a huge Jack Kirby fan and was taking a tour of some of his spots. He was from the Lower East Side, just like the Bowery Boys, but he went to school in Brooklyn. Well, for a while, anyway. Jack didn’t stay in school very long.
Aren’t we supposed to be talking baseball? My gosh, my team is all over the leaderboards. Anthony is leading in homers, KB in doubles, Javy in stolen bases.
CT — Oh, for sure. My bad, I didn’t know I was supposed to interrupt you. I was fascinated.
BP — Entranced, enchanted, embalmed, right?
CT — Soitenly. Now there’s a set of Brooklyn boys.
BP — Absolutely. The Horwitzes and Feinbergs were Brooklyn-born and bred. You need Chazz Palminteri or Billy Joel for that Bronx cheer.
CT — Bobby Darin.
BP — Yeah, that’s right. And lots of ballplayers. Gehrig, Greenberg. Rod Carew. Bobby Bonilla, who is still gettin’ paid.
CT — You know too many weird things. You also manage weird. Why’d you bring in Tyler Olson to face right-handers?
BP — Hindsight is 20/20. Olson’s splits are not all that bad. Nobody counts on Freddie Galvis going deep. Suarez is another matter entirely. He kills us. But Tyler threw a bad pitch, and he’ll work that out in Iowa, where they’re contending for a title, too.
Alec is gonna head up the rotation with Max Fried. They’re both big parts of the club going forward, and we know, and they know it. They’re motivated to win and to show us how wrong we are to put them in Iowa, and we’re okay with that.
They’ll be back. And they’ll get a good taste of winning where they are. The I-Cubs are good team, 54-19 going into today’s contest with the Memphis Redbirds, and Josh Phegley is still hitting everything in sight. He’s got some help down there with the great rotation and a solid group of fielders.
CT — It’ a beautiful thing. So we can look forward to some good young people coming up to join the big club and push the vets a little. And some guys with MLB experience, like Phegley, Albert Almora Jr., Steven Souza Jr. or Brett Phillips.
I like seeing how well Brennen Davis is doing after his promotion. He’s getting it done at the top, isn’t he?
BP — Indeed he is. Let’s drink to that and to continued success, and we’ll reconvene next week. I understand there’ll be a surprise for the fans Saturday.