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BCB After Dark: World Baseball Classic

The late-night/early-morning spot for Cubs fans asks how you are feeling about the WBC.

Chinese Taipei v Fubon Guardians Photo by Yung Chuan Yang/Getty Images

It’s another week here at BCB After Dark: the hippest hangout for night owls, early risers, new parents and Cubs fans abroad. Come on in on this fine evening. We’re so glad to see you again. Let us take your hat and coat. The dress code is casual. The companionship is warm. There’s still a good table available. Bring your own beverage.

BCB After Dark is the place for you to talk baseball, music, movies, or anything else you need to get off your chest, as long as it is within the rules of the site. The late-nighters are encouraged to get the party started, but everyone else is invited to join in as you wake up the next morning and into the afternoon.

Last week I asked which non-roster invitee would you keep on the Cubs Opening Day roster, Ben DeLuzio or Mike Tauchman. By a vote of 56 percent to 44, you chose Tauchman’s power over DeLuzio’s speed.

Here’s the part where I talk about jazz and movies. You’re free to skip ahead to the baseball question at the end. You won’t hurt my feelings.

There’s no way that I can adequately pay justice to the career of Wayne Shorter, who left us last week at the age of 89. To put it in baseball terms, Shorter was a surefire no-doubt first-ballot Hall of Famer. As both a saxophonist and a songwriter, there were few that equaled him in the world of music. Shorter excelled as a solo artist, as a member of the Jazz Messengers and the Second Great Miles Davis Quintet, and as the founder and leader of the jazz fusion group Weather Report. Shorter always at the center of the story of the last sixty years of jazz. He always played with the best in the business. On Shorter’s first album from 1959, he played with such greats as Lee Morgan, Wynton Kelly, Paul Chambers and Jimmy Cobb. His final album, released just last year, was Live at the Detroit Jazz Festival. It was recorded in 2017 with Esperanza Spalding, Terri Lyne Carrington and Leo Genovese. If there’s a great jazz musician from the late-fifties to the early-twenties, Shorter most likely played with them.

He was also a great songwriter. Whereas many jazz musicians mostly or exclusively play songs written by other people, Shorter mostly wrote his own pieces. Shorter even wrote the music for many of the groups he was in led by other musicians. For example: on Miles Davis’ 1968 album Nefertiti, Shorter wrote three of the six tracks, including the title song.

This week is Wayne Shorter week at BCB After Dark. To be honest, three days is not enough time. But I’m sure that we’ll feature more of his music in the months to come. Heck, I just featured him a few weeks ago in the Miles Davis Quintet playing “I Fall in Love Too Easily.”

Perhaps Shorter’s best album as a band leader (and certainly his most famous) is 1964’s Speak Like A Child. Here’s the title track from that album, written by Shorter. It features two other members of the Second Great Miles Davis Quintet, Ron Carter on bass and Herbie Hancock on piano. Freddie Hubbard is on trumpet and Elvin Jones is on drums.

Now that the BCB Winter Noir Classic is over, I guess I have to go back to what I was doing before. We’ll try to come up with something almost as good next winter.

One thing that’s been suggested is a spy movie tournament, and while I’m not committing to that here, I am going to give you a chance to sound off on spy films. In particular, I’m asking you about the iconic spy, the ne plus ultra of cinematic espionage, James Bond.

Tonight’s question is: Who is your favorite Bond? The producers of the Bond franchise are in the process of picking a new James Bond after five Daniel Craig films, and if you want to sound off on who should be the next Bond, you can. (And no, it won’t be Idris Elba. He’s too old. He’s only four years younger than Craig and they want someone who can play the part for fifteen years or so like Craig did. Even Elba admits he’s now too old for the part.)

But tonight, tell us who your favorite Bond is from the 25 “canonical” Eon Films. I’m not letting you vote for David Niven in the 1967 parody Casino Royale, nor am I allowing you to vote for Barry Nelson as “Jimmy Bond” in the 1954 episode of the TV show Climax! (Although I would wonder where you saw that if that’s your favorite. I’d also question the sincerity of your answer.)

I don’t think I have to tell you who these actors are or were. And yes, you can vote for George Lazenby if you want. I find On Her Majesty’s Secret Service to be underrated. Even if it’s not among my favorites, I do think it’s not bad at all.


Who is your favorite James Bond?

This poll is closed

  • 60%
    Sean Connery
    (71 votes)
  • 12%
    Roger Moore
    (15 votes)
  • 3%
    George Lazenby
    (4 votes)
  • 3%
    Timothy Dalton
    (4 votes)
  • 3%
    Pierce Brosnan
    (4 votes)
  • 16%
    Daniel Craig
    (20 votes)
118 votes total Vote Now

And be sure to comment with your thoughts below.

Welcome back to everyone who skips the jazz and movies.

By the time that we meet again tomorrow night, the sixth World Baseball Classic will be underway. In fact, Cuba should be playing the Netherlands in Taichung, Taiwan when tomorrow night’s edition gets posted. Of course, you can use BCB After Dark if you want to say something about any of the games. I doubt enough of you will be watching live for a proper game thread, but sharing your thoughts of the game will be appreciated anyway. Even if they’re the next morning.

As you probably know, I’m a big fan of the WBC. I also know that not all of you feel the same way. So at the risk of hurting my feelings, tonight, I’m going to ask you your impression of the WBC.

Do you love it like I do? Or do you wish it would go away and die a quiet death? Or something in-between? Tell us about it in the comments. Hopefully some of you who aren’t fans of it will get converted over the next two weeks. But if you don’t, that’s OK too. I’m not going to tell you you have to watch.

I don’t expect anyone to watch every game, although I figure that MLB Network’s Jon Paul Morosi will certainly try. But even I need to sleep sometimes and some of these games start at 5 AM Eastern Time. But I will watch as many as I can.

But maybe you’re just someone who is going to catch a few games of your favorite team. (And it’s totally fine to be an American and cheer for a team other than Team USA.) Maybe your fandom is that you enjoy it and your glad it exists, but it’s not a big deal for you. Or maybe you care less one way or the other, but you’ll watch the semifinals or the finals just because it’s baseball.

Remember, all the games are broadcast by the Fox Sports family of networks: Fox, FS1, FS2, Fox Deportes and Tubi. Check your local listings. Or just check this list here.


The World Baseball Classic?

This poll is closed

  • 14%
    Love it! I’ll follow it as much as I can.
    (17 votes)
  • 31%
    Like it. I plan to catch a few games and the final four.
    (37 votes)
  • 36%
    Eh. It’s OK. I might tune in for the semis or finals.
    (43 votes)
  • 17%
    Blech. I’ll try to ignore it.
    (21 votes)
118 votes total Vote Now

Thank you so very much for stopping by this evening. We hope you’re leaving here in a little better mood than when you arrived. Recycle your cans and bottles. Tip the waitstaff. Please get home safely—we want to see you again tomorrow night for another edition of BCB After Dark.