Not conservative enough

Interesting to see during the opening introductions that Juan Pierre and Nomar Garciaparra got booed. Greg Maddux got a nice hand, as you would expect.

It was relatively quiet outside the ballpark, not a whole lot of chaos or activity, but a lot of people nonetheless. A more serious crowd tonight, I think. Perhaps it was the 5:30 start. It just didn’t have the frenzy game day normally has.

Which is probably an apt description, as I bumped into nationally syndicated columnist, George Will. Renowned for his conservatism, love of baseball, as well as baseball acumen, he looked a little lost milling around the Ernie Banks statue; perhaps he was waiting to meet someone. He actually looks a little like an older version of Andy MacPhail. Not sure if Andy would think that’s a good or bad thing.

So I introduced myself as the editor of Vine Line and offered him a copy of our latest issue, which features Carlos Zambrano’s no-hitter on the cover. I asked if he would ever consider serving as a guest columnist.

“Absolutely. Just give me a topic and I’ll write it.”

Now that’s cool.

Cubs legend Rick Sutcliffe threw out the first pitch (photo by Dave Durochik). He even showed a little of his trademark forearm dip before skipping his pitch into the dirt.

sut.jpgThe color guard was from Dixon, Illinois, which was a nice surprise–that’s where where I was born some 37 years ago and Ronald Reagan grew up. Not sure if I consider that a good or bad thing.

Mark DeRosa staked the Cubs to a two-run lead, with a opposite field homer to right. It was the only place you could hit a ball and have the wind help. The wind was cutting directly across the outfield, not in.

I came back up to the office mid-fifth after James Loney hit his grand slam off of Ryan Dempster and you could just feel the entire stadium deflate. Odd that Dempster walked SEVEN guys and stayed in. He had only given up two hits, though. So what to do? Fans behind me were going the conservative route–pull Dempster before the walks really did some damage. Or do you leave him in? He had pitched out of jams twice. Perhaps a third was too much.

And it was. Now they’ve got to dig themselves out. Let’s hope they can do it.

–Mike Huang

Ouch. Manny Ramirez just blasted a shot to left center to make it 5-2.


Ever consider letting fans submit articles to Vineline as guest colomnests?

We have had fans write columns for Vine Line as in our Aisle 429 segment. But we would gladly welcome articles from fans! We also recommend writing in to Vine Line via snail mail or e-mail whenever possible!

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