“I can remember a sports writer asking me for a quote and I didn’t know what a quote was. I thought it was some kind of soft drink.” – Joe DiMaggio
In the history of their franchise, the Cubs have had a number of high profile managers, many of them with personality quirks that made them virtual quote machines. Without much baseball news to report, I thought I’d pick out some of my all-time favorite Chicago managerial quotes and share them with you. Please spare me your wrath for including the wisdom of former Cubs manager Tom Trebelhorn.
- “The last time the Cubs won the World Series was 1908. The last time they were in one was 1945. Hey, any team can have a bad century.” – Trebelhorn
- “I never questioned the integrity of an umpire. Their eyesight? Yes.” – Leo Durocher
- “We got all these so-called fuckin’ fans that come out here and say they’re Cub fans, that are supposed to be behind you, rippin’ every fuckin’ thing you do. Eighty-five percent of the fuckin’ world’s working. The other 15 come out here.” – Lee Elia (full 1983 Elia rant right here)
- “[Theo Epstein, Jed Hoyer, and I) kind of sat behind the Cousin Eddie. That’s our RV, the Cousin Eddie, a 43-foot Winnebago, and we sat back there and pretty much just talked philosophy about how this is all going to work. For me, that was the most important thing. That’s what I needed to know, that we were philosophically aligned.” – Joe Maddon
- “It’s a little bone that doesn’t mean anything (the hamate bone), that you don’t need, and won’t cost you eight weeks of not playing.” – Dale Sveum
- “One of [Bill] Veeck’s first projects was organizing a little musical group that played concerts before each game. Bill’s instrument was a big whistle with holes in it and a plunger to control the air. Rudie [Schaffer] played a home-made bass fiddle, consisting of a five-gallon paint can and a broomstick with a cord on it, which produced a thumping noise. George Blaeholder, a veteran pitcher who has been credited with introducing the now popular slider, played the accordion, and I chimed in with my banjo.” – Charlie Grimm
- “The weather’s cold. My club’s bad. My knee hurts and I can’t putt no more. My wife is nagging me. Other than that everything’s fine.” – Don Zimmer
- “You can tell your uncle stuff that you can’t tell your dad. That is kind of the role of the uncle. I feel very much like a father sometimes, but sometimes I feel like a teammate.” – Dusty Baker
- “As far as sleeping goes, you’re up and ready to go at six in the morning. Spring training was always a combination of relaxing and working, and I missed that quite a bit. I missed being around the ball field. A baseball. A bat. The smell of the uniform, you might say. Talking baseball. Seeing opponents as well as the Cubs.” – Lou Boudreau
- “People ask me what I do in winter when there’s no baseball. I’ll tell you what I do. I stare out the window and wait for spring.” – Rogers Hornsby
Cubs News & Notes
- Right fielder Jason Heyward will likely hit sixth in the order once the 2020 season is able to resume. Heyward had his greatest success at the plate last season hitting at the back end of the lineup.
- There’s a good possibility that David Ross will carry three catchers to start the season. Before MLB suspended spring training, Josh Phegley was in the mix for the Cubs’ 26th roster spot. He’s not on the 40-man roster and could open the season with the Cubs or in Triple-A.
- Second baseman Nico Hoerner spent the offseason earning his degree from Stanford University. The infielder was impressive in a starting role as an emergency September call-up last season after Javier Báez injured his thumb. Jason Kipnis will likely get the starting nod over the rookie infielder this year, but it won’t be long before Hoerner is a regular starter.
- Anna Katherine Clemmons of ESPN wrote a nice feature on lead hitting lab tech Rachel Folden.
- Kyle Ryan is a lock to make the team and may be relied on to pitch in high leverage situations.
- The final day of spring training typically provides its own farewell, and the abrupt ending this year prevented a few traditions.
- Jharel Cotton is a longshot to make the team, so he will probably start the season in Iowa. The 28-year-old missed all of 2018 recovering from Tommy John surgery and hasn’t pitched in the majors since 2017.
- Gabby Hartnett is the greatest catcher in the history of the franchise, according to Jordan Bastian of MLB.com. Willson Contreras also makes Bastian’s top five.
- The Cubs’ 10 best free agents of all-time includes Jim Edmonds, Mark DeRosa, Andre Dawson, and of course Jon Lester. Edmonds signed for the league minimum in May of 2008 after being released by the Padres.
- MLB Network will air the ‘Tuffy Rhodes Game’ on Thursday evening at 11 PM Central.
- Rhodes is considered one of the all-time greats in Japanese baseball, but is having a tough time getting the necessary votes to be elected into the NPB Hall of Fame.
- Steve Stone recalled a time that announcer Harry Caray was held at gunpoint, with a surprising twist.
Odds & Sods
You have just four days left to get this really boss t-shirt!
— Michael Canter of Cubs Insider ✨ (@MEdwardCanter) March 24, 2020
MLB News & Notes
Mets starter Noah Syndergaard needs Tommy John surgery and will miss the entire 2020 season. An optimistic timeline for his return would be next April and a conservative estimate is probably 15 months out, something like just after the 2021 All-Star break.
MLB has delayed Opening Day until mid-May at the earliest.
Giants outfielder Hunter Pence doesn’t think a shortened season should diminish the impact of its champion.
Lawyers representing the Astros answered a man who is suing the organization for $1 million for illegally stealing signs in 2017: “A ticket holder has only the right to enter a venue and to have a seat for the ticketed game, and cannot complain afterwards that the game should have been played differently.”
An unnamed Red Sox minor league player has tested positive for COVID-19.
David Schoenfield: The 10 best Home Run Derby performances of all time https://t.co/cMyJ3QijdT
— Buster Olney (@Buster_ESPN) March 25, 2020
They Said It
- “I think [Hoerner] is going to be a stud. He’s going to be one. He’s a young guy with a lot of talent and I don’t want to get in the way of him progressing in this game, or getting better.” – Jason Kipnis
- “(I’m) playing with a guy that’s been in the big leagues almost 10 years, played in the World Series, played second base at the highest level, [Kipnis] has been great to me so far.” – Nico Hoerner
Wednesday Walk Up Song
Bug A Boo by Destiny’s Child
What went wrong? Songs that reference technology can seem dated pretty quickly. Lyrics to this song include “You make me wanna throw my pager out the window”, “Tell MCI to cut the phone calls,” and “Have AOL make my email stop.”
How does it play today? It’s funny, and makes us feel like we’ve all aged incredibly quickly. Songs that reference MySpace make us laugh now. One day we’ll probably laugh at songs that mention Twitter and Facebook, too.