The death march has begun.
The Cubs have traded probably the only tradeable pieces that they are willing to trade. There may be some rumors about Fukudome or Nady as the waiver deadline approaches, but I expect that the moves would either never come to fruition or do nothing more than clear a roster spot.
The Cubs have slipped into fifth place in the standings and have some work to do to get to last, but that may end up being the biggest story when it is all said and done.
We will get to see a parade of pitchers who are clearly over-matched on the major league level. Casey Coleman may be a third generation major league pitcher in his family, but the Cubs might as well have sent his grandfather out there against the Brewers last night, and he's been dead for 13 years.
Brian Schlitter is so terrible that I think he may actually be part of a plan to make fans beg for Jeff Samardzija to get another chance. He makes us wish John Grabow a speedy recovery. He makes us pine for the services of Bob Howry again. He makes us wish we could get our hands on some cyanide capsules.
There is almost nothing interesting left about the 2010 season, so there is almost nothing left but to wildly speculate about 2011. So, what if Ozzie Guillen were the next manager of the Chicago Cubs?
See, if I had said that yesterday you would have thought I was just an insane, wreckless blogger living in my mother's basement and stirring up trouble. But today, Paul Sullivan provided this conjecture:
So I am not the one throwing the insane, wreckless ideas out there. I am just sitting here in my mother's basement and commenting on it.
I'm going to come out and say this is a fabulous idea and I throw the full weight of Aisle 424 behind this initiative.
Let's face it, the Cubs are probably going to blow pretty hard next year too. Everyone will be a year older and on a veteran team like the Cubs, that isn't a good thing. There isn't any money to improve via Spendin' Jim's preferred means, so the caravan between Iowa and Chicago will be adding a few departures to keep up with demand.
What would keep us interested in 2011 after the disappointment of 2009 and the journey to oblivion in 2010?
Ryne Sandberg? I know he's become a walking firestorm that gets kicked out of games every other day now, but it is still Ryne Sandberg. The quiet guy who kept his head down and played "the right way." I love Ryne, but we also have to remember that when stuff got tough at home, it followed him onto the field and he eventually quit before his skills left him. That was his choice and something he felt he needed to do, but it doesn't make for a quality I would want leading the Chicago Cubs where adversity is around every corner.
Joe Girardi? If he is the next manager of the Cubs it is because the Yankees didn't want him badly enough to hold onto him. That's not good. Add in that he was fired from his Florida Marlins job after winning Manager of the Year, and we have what appears to be a very good manager, but one with some quality that nobody wants around very long. That could be interesting, but it hasn't made for real good copy since whatever it is about Joe that people don't like must happen behind closed doors.
But Ozzie on the north side? That would be entertaining as hell. Half of the fan base would hate it to the core of their being. You thought bringing in Jim Edmonds was a tough sell? I would almost rather try to convince people that BP is an environmentally friendly corporation. So there would be that shitstorm which would be fun in and of itself, but then you would also have the media dredging up every anti-Cub, anti-Wrigley, and anti-North Side thing Ozzie has ever said. Think of the backtracking and the new Ozzieisms that would spring from such an exercise.
On top of THAT, the only reason Ozzie would even ever be available for the job would be because he and Kenny Williams' irreconcilable differences will become unlivable and the split probably won't be amicable. If you thought reading how big a dumbass Kenny Williams is in "Moneyball" was fun, just wait for the first press conference Ozzie has when he is asked about his feelings about Kenny. That is an hour-long ESPN special waiting to happen.
So I am 100% on board the Ozzie-to-the-Cubs Train. It gets hard to write about the Cubs every damn day, but I bet Ozzie would make it a whole hell of a lot easier.
Oh, and he won a World Series with a team that had Geoff Blum and Scott Posednik on it that was second only to the Cubs in futility. So there is that too.