I usually try to wait until after the emotions of a particular event subside before writing about that event, but today, I simply can’t wait. I just finished watching the Chicago Cubs enter the bottom of the 9th inning against the New York Mets with a 5-1 lead and with closer Ryan Dempster on the mound. Starting pitcher Angel Guzman pitched a heck of a game and has battled for over two years to get his first major league victory and was in line to do that today until that Cubs bullpen in typical format, gives up 5 runs in the bottom of the 9th to give away yet another game and lose in walk-off fashion, 6-5.
(AP Photo/Kathy Willens)
Now I realize that every man in that bullpen is working hard and trying to get outs. Nobody is trying not to win, but this is just unbearable to watch. I mean, I recall a bitter game on July 28, 2002 against the St. Louis Cardinals on an ESPN Sunday Night Baseball broadcast when Antonio Alfonseca and others gave up a five run lead to lose a game by 1 in the ninth inning (Cards were losing 9-4 in the bottom of the ninth; Edgar Renteria hit a three-run homer to top off a 6-run comeback to win the game for the Cards, 10-9) and today’s game brings back memories of that painful night. The Cubs went on to finish that season 67-95.
The end of today’s game was completely crushing for Cubs fans. Yes, the Cubs are 3 games under .500 for the season, but this seems like a team that is going nowhere fast. There is no consistency on this team, unless you count the fact that they are consistently inconsistent. One day it’s the offense not hitting, going 0-16 in bases loaded situations until Aramis Ramirez’ grand slam homer on Tuesday night, one day, it’s the defense not making plays or making errors. Most every time, it’s the bullpen blowing leads, giving up runs in mop up duty. The bullpen has clearly been the achilles heel of this team, racking up a 2-12 record so far through the not so young season. This is quickly turning into another lost season unless something is done now. Better get some new bullpen guys and fast.
So, for $300 million, we get this? The new ownership can’t get here fast enough, in my opinion…..