Tuesday, March 15, 2005

This is Great

Stone to Wood: Adjust or go sell cars

Listening to the Mike North Morning Show on The Score this morning was fairly entertaining. Here is what Stone was quoted as saying:

...And if they call you a thrower, and if you keep saying you can't change your mechanics, and if in fact your mechanics are partially responsible for you getting hurt every year, you've got a couple of choices: You can take all the money you've made --which is a bundle -- and you can go sell cars. Or you can make some adjustments and try to stay around this league for 10 years.

I agree whole-heartedly with Steve Stone. You see how the Sun-Times and others will take a perfectly legitimate statement like this and rip the "Adjust or go sell cars" line right out of it to make a controversial headline. Stoney has always cut to the point. He's a matter-of-fact commentator and he's dead on here. Woody showed signs of becoming a "pitcher" in 2003, but I'm not sure if he's gotten over the mentality of just trying to muscle up and blow a fastball by the hitter - you've got to outpitch the hitter.

Stone had some words regarding Mark Prior as well:

I won't name names, but coming out of camp last year at times was [the opinion] that Prior probably wasn't tough enough.

Now I don't doubt there were some players questioning Prior's physical toughness last year and they're probably still saying the same thing this Spring, but I don't know where to land on this one. Part of me says the Cubs should continue to be cautious and wait until the inflammation is down before moving forward, but the other part remembers that my arm hurt every time I threw a baseball hard for any extended period of time. I don't think any of us can know if what Prior is going through is the norm for other pitchers of his style and he should just pitch, but if Prior doesn't think he should be pitching until he's straightened out - maybe we should all try to sit tight until he's fixed.

And if you'd rather let him go, here's Stone again: So you've got a multimillion-dollar talent, you want to keep running him out there and saying he's not tough enough? Well, I'll tell you what: Let him go and see if anybody else picks him up.

Monday, March 14, 2005

What Next?

Mark Prior has pulled up with more elbow problems this Spring and will most likely miss his next start. This in itself isn't that great of news, but coupled with Kerry Wood's problems and the following statement, I might be looking at a couple of ulcers.

Ryan Dempster, Glendon Rusch or Sergio Mitre could fill in in the rotation if Wood and Prior are sidelined.

Friday, March 11, 2005

Wood Back in Chicago

"It was just a matter of him going back and seeing our team doctor. Right now, it's nothing. We just decided to do this for a precautionary sake." -- Dusty Baker

Now, I am hoping Baker is right here, but after all the downplays on the injuries last year, I don't know what to believe. I was spoon-fed the slop that Cub management was serving last year and I don't feel like eating any more. Remember this: "Mark Prior is fine, he'll probably just miss his first start." All of a sudden he doesn't start until the June timeframe. What about Kerry Wood last year? "He's ok, we'll just take a look at his arm and he'll probably just sit out one week." Apparently, to the Cubs old training staff, one week equates to two months. I'm hoping they've come back to reality this year, but I really don't know what to expect at this point.

Monday, March 07, 2005

Steroids? Forget it, give me elective surgery!

I just read an interesting article over at Wired.com concerning elective surgery, or the idea of having voluntary surgery done in order to improve sports performance. The article talks about a number of common procedures, such as laser eye and Tommy John surgery. The writer also mentions Kerry Wood a number of times and claims Wood's peak velocity was reached after he underwent surgery. Whether his claims are true or not is another point. Regardless, the article points out a number of medical ethics problems that could arise in the near future. Amid all the steroid talk (and is there anything else on sports radio anymore?) it's interesting to think of the implications of elective surgery on the creation of the next generation of record-breakers.

Tuesday, March 01, 2005

My reaction was the same as this man when I first realized that the Cubs 2004 hopes were lost.

While we're waiting for 2005 to start, do we have a Strat-O-Matic Baseball fan out there who has the 2004 Cubs card set? I'm ready to take somebody on with my 1970 Chicago Cubs to answer the burning question of which team had the best station-to-station offense of all time.

Here's my starting pitcher....