Friday, April 3, 2009

A True Concern for the Cubs' New Closer

I was walking to work this morning listening to my iPod and my random shuffle came upon the Spinners' "The Rubberband Man." For those who may not recognize the title or artist, it has become the entrance song for Carlos Marmol at Wrigley Field.

It has got a funky groove and I've always liked it, even if it really has nothing to do with intimidation of an opponent, which is ultimately what you would like from a reliever's theme song. There is at least some implication that Carlos is the Rubberband Man because of his great arm (I guess). Seems like a stretch to me (rim shot). In retrospect, this probably should have been the theme song for Terry Mulholland in 1998, but I digress.

As the song played and I tried to visualize myself hearing it at Wrigley in 10 days, I realized that the Cubs have a new closer, and he probably also needs a theme song. I believe there is a subsection buried deep within the baseball rulebook that says:

"8.03a - When the reliever so designated as the Final Reliever (Closer) enters to pitch (either between innings or during an inning in progress), the stadium crew for the Home team shall play a pre-chosen song recording over the stadium sound system for the duration of said reliever's entrance and prepatory pitches."

So after all of the hoo-ha about who actually deserves to be the closer for the Cubs, we have nearly forgotten that Kevin Gregg has no theme music! Thank God I was here to point that out! And thank God you were here to read about it!

I know nothing of Kevin Gregg's taste in music, but I'm going to say here and now, for the record, that the song should NOT be "Welcome to the Jungle" again. I say that not out of loyalty to Kerry Wood, nor because I am trying to break away from the traditions of the failed 2008 season. I am saying that because I hate that f---in' song.

I wanted to stick my Cubs pencil through my ears, into my brain, and swirl it around every time Kerry came in to pitch at Wrigley last year. What the hell does Kerry Wood have to do with a jungle? When has Wrigley Field ever been likened to a jungle? Isn't it about Axl Rose going to Los Angeles? Can we at least try to find something that makes a certain amount of sense instead of going with the first hairband opus we think of?

For the amount of sense "Welcome to the Jungle" made, we might as well just say Gregg's theme is Def Leppard's "Pour Some Sugar on Me" and be done with it. Its catchy, it rocks out in an 80s kind of way, and drunk people like to sing along to it. Those seemed to be the major qualifications that went into choosing "Welcome to the Jungle."

Personally, I would get away from the cliche metal theme song. Its been done. Many times. If it were up to me (which, sadly, it is not), I would kick it more old school and let the venerable John Williams set the mood with an orchestral score.

My first choice would be the Imperial March from Star Wars - any song written to musically indicate Darth Vader coming onto the screen (before we found out he was a whiny mama's boy) has got to be good enough for a Cubs closer.

My second choice would be the Theme from Jaws - Jaws snuck up from below and killed you when you weren't suspecting it (except when he was in 3D, when he tried to eat Dennis Quaid by breaking into an underwater complex). I have to believe that Gregg's current reputation isn't of someone opponents fear on sight. The surprise some batters feel that they have been retired by Gregg at the end of a game may be the baseball equivalent of a shark bite.

Plus, the Cubs marketing department could start using the tag line, "Just when you thought it was safe to play the Cubs at Wrigley..."

See? This is the kind of post you get when Spring Training lasts eight million years. Two more fake games to go and then it gets real.


Arnold said...

I think he should use TNT by AC/DC. WAY cooler than Welcome to the Dollhouse by Lames N Lamers.

Sarah Gaiser said...

I like to think that your knowledge of Jaws is directly related to the fact that you lived with me for 8 months! Now THAT'S something to be proud of! "Look ... another disc". Do you like that I never actually comment on baseball, the Cubs or the quality of your blog? It's just not me :)

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