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The Daily Belli watch: 35 days to the Cubs Spring Training opener

We’ve got more today than just Cody Bellinger.

Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

Today, since I have no real news about Cody Bellinger to share with you, I thought I’d make this post a sort of generic catch-all for a couple of things.

First, I messed up the jersey poll in Thursday’s edition, so I’m repeating it here with the missing players added, and Miguel Amaya removed because he got zero votes in the previous poll.

Second, I wanted to talk a bit about the proposed White Sox stadium in the South Loop that was revealed the other day. Ashley touched on it in today’s Outside The Confines. Here’s a Chicago Sun-Times article that talks about it. Here’s what we know now, from the article:

Sources familiar with the talks, all speaking on the condition they not be named, told the Chicago Sun-Times the negotiations for a baseball-only stadium are “serious.”

The Illinois Sports Facilities Authority, the government agency that owns and financed Guaranteed Rate Field, has not been involved in the discussions, according to the authority’s CEO Frank Bilecki. At some point, the stadium authority would need to get involved in determining the future of Guaranteed Rate Field and possibly in building a new ballpark if it is publicly funded.

As I have mentioned previously here, I am dead-set against public money being used for stadium construction in Chicago. The same goes for a Bears stadium in downtown Chicago, something team president Kevin Warren mentioned last week:

... he also emphasized a glass-half-full mindset with his dream of building an iconic stadium in Chicago.

“Absolutely we can build something that would be magnificent downtown,” he said.

Oh, please. The property Warren is talking about is the parking lots south of Soldier Field. Soldier Field has issues, and so does that location — it’s very difficult to get to. Honestly, the Bears should just build on the Arlington Heights property they paid almost $200 million for. That’s the best possible location for what they have envisioned.

And once again: No. Public. Money.

I spoke to Brett Ballantini, editor-in-chief of our SB Nation White Sox site South Side Sox, about this proposal and here’s what he said:

On the face of it, sure, I like it. Not married to the 35th & Shields location since Reinsdorf tore down the Baseball Palace of the World. I don’t trust them not to screw it up some again, and like 35 years ago I’m 100 percent against significant money being spent by taxpayers. Jerry is bored, his team sucks, so we’ll have these non-stories to talk about all year.

From a Cubs perspective, it’s interesting, too. The Cubs have maybe never had a “ballpark rival” in the city, no matter how undesirable Wrigleyville may have been in the past (probably not at all beyond some noise/traffic). While this new park could never outdo some of what Wrigley has, it would be interesting to see how tourist dollars might get siphoned given the as good/better location.

That’s a valid point. Here’s a photo of where the proposed new Sox stadium would go, from the Sun-Times article:

Chicago Sun-Times

The location would be at the north end of that grassy area, basically around the intersection of Clark & Roosevelt — the intersection at the upper right corner of the grassy area (hey, two Chicago ballparks on Clark Street!). That would be close to downtown, right next to public transit, and provide some excellent skyline views — that is, presuming they build the park facing the right way (northeast), rather than the southeast-facing park the Sox have now.

It’ll certainly be interesting. The Sox lease at Guaranteed Rate Field expires after the 2029 season, so that’s six more years before they’d need a new park. That would seem to allow plenty of time. But, as always, we await developments.

Which reminds me: Five weeks from today, Cubs players will take the field at Sloan Park and face the White Sox. Here’s hoping Cody Bellinger is one of them.

Poll

Let’s try this again. If you could buy only one current Cub’s jersey, who would it be?

This poll is closed

  • 0%
    Adbert Alzolay
    (4 votes)
  • 0%
    Javier Assad
    (2 votes)
  • 2%
    Craig Counsell
    (18 votes)
  • 5%
    Pete Crow-Armstrong
    (43 votes)
  • 1%
    Yan Gomes
    (9 votes)
  • 3%
    Ian Happ
    (28 votes)
  • 19%
    Kyle Hendricks
    (148 votes)
  • 23%
    Nico Hoerner
    (174 votes)
  • 1%
    Shōta Imanaga
    (13 votes)
  • 9%
    Christopher Morel
    (69 votes)
  • 6%
    Justin Steele
    (51 votes)
  • 4%
    Seiya Suzuki
    (37 votes)
  • 14%
    Dansby Swanson
    (112 votes)
  • 0%
    Mike Tauchman
    (7 votes)
  • 2%
    Patrick Wisdom
    (19 votes)
  • 2%
    Someone else (leave in comments)
    (18 votes)
752 votes total Vote Now