Tagged: cubs

Pat the Bat

It was a mob scene at home plate as one of the more beleaguered Rays came home after ripping a game-winning home run in the bottom of the 11th inning.

And I missed it (Dog paws hit the channel up button; by the time I fixed the situation and turned it back, Pat was being mobbed.  Sheesh!).

That’s ok, though.  Thank goodness for replay.

Pat Burrell snapped the Rays’ 4-game losing streak and sent the fans home happy tonight with his heroic blast against Toronto Blue Jays hurler Brandon League.  He came into the at bat 0-3 and hitting only .218.  While the average might have climbed just a little bit, the spirits of the Rays faithful soared with his big hit.

It could be that things are starting to improve for Burrell.  As he said in his postgame interview with Todd Kalas, “Maybe tonight, you know, it’ll start turning around.”  What an exciting proposition that would be.  To see Pat the Bat putting up the numbers expected of him to help jumpstart an offense that has been quite anemic as of late.

These are the types of games that not only end losing streaks, but start winning streaks.  An injection of excitement from a veteran was exactly what this squad had been missing.  In the past it had come off the bat of such guys as Eric Hinske, Cliff Floyd, and Jonny Gomes.  And everytime it was followed by some good baseball.

Let’s hope that this will be the case again.

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Cubs note: Does everybody know how Ryan Dempster broke his toe?  He jumped over the railing at the end of last night’s Cub win.  Could be shelved 3-4 weeks.  Not good, not good…

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Oh Happy Ray!!

MLB All-Star Game 2009 logo

 

This Rays fan is ecstatic with the selection of every deserving Rays position player to the All-Star Game roster.  I was getting a little worried as they made the announcements of the AL reserves because no Rays were being mentioned.  Every year the manager of the team always gets a little leeway when it comes to selecting players from his own team to the roster.

I was worried Joe Maddon might buck tradition and leave off guys from his own team in favor of being as fair as possible.

What was great is that “fair” was exactly what happened today.

The Rays got an unprecedented (for them) amount of players put onto the team with the selection of Evan Longoria, Carl Crawford, Jason Bartlett, and Ben Zobrist.

Every one of those guys should be an All Star and it is great that they will represent the reigning AL Champs in St. Louis next week.

It’ll be interesting when it comes out more directly which of those guys were player selections and which of them were Maddon selections.  Either way, they made it on the merit of their play, not simply due to their time in the league over the past years. 

I was a little surprised that so many Red Sox were put on the team (again, I don’t know right now which were chosen by Joe and which were player selections) not because of the team’s lack of success but because of some incidents in the past with the Rays and Red Sox.

Good for Joe taking the high road and getting the deserving Sox on the team.  It would be hard to argue leaving any of them off.

What is even more exciting is the potential of getting Carlos Pena onto the team as well through the final man fan vote.  I’ve already started voting.  This might not be the most deserving of guys, so I’m just closing my eyes and hoping we can get one more Ray on the roster. 

But this was truly a day for the Rays.  Not only will the game be a pure treat to watch this year, with no ill feelings whatsoever about who should have made it, but today brings alot of pride to the area and to the team that has waited a long time for it. 

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On a side note: It was quite a hit to see only one Cub put on the team after they set the record last year for most players from one team on an All-Star roster.  But they got what they deserved.

Hockey

I told you it was a slow day.

The hockey free agent period has been pretty exciting for the teams I call MINE: the Chicago Blackhawks and the Tampa Bay Lightning. 

Both teams took a huge step forward in shoring up their respective teams, signing guys who are going to come in and really hit people and light the lamp.

The ‘Hawks signed one of the more coveted forwards in the league, Marian Hossa.  His story is pretty intriguing: played for Pittsburgh two years ago, lost the Stanley Cup finals, decided to leave alot of money behind to sign with Detroit this past season because he thought it would be his best chance to win a Cup.

Of course, that did not work out as his Detroit team lost out to the ‘Pens.

Ironic.

But hey, he brings his 40 goals to an already awesome (and young) Blackhawk team that made a nice playoff run last year.  He’ll be around for 12 years (hockey contracts are so out of the ordinary).

I know it is early to talk about hockey, but I’m really excited about this upcoming season because my mom and dad bought me a Patrick Kane Winter Classic at Wrigley Field jersey for my recent birthday.  Funny how something so simple, yet pricey, can get one jones-ing for a sport’s season to start!

And since it is a Winter Classic jersey and that that game was played at the Cubs’ home, this whole article is suddenly somewhat baseball related.  So there.

I’m upset Chicago lost Nikolai Khabibulin, but that’s how it goes.

The Lightning should have one solid defense next year as they followed up their inspired draft of Viktor Hedman with the signings of former ‘Hawk Matt Walker and former Canuck, and overall amazing defenseman, Mattias Ohlund.

Pair that with their organization’s decision to keep Vinny Lecavlier, and things are officially turned around in Tampa.

I know, I know, it is a little early to talk hockey.  And on a baseball blog!  Unheard of!

Hey, it’s been a slow day…