Ivy’s Ode to Soto

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When you spend a large amount of time with someone you can’t help but get attached, it’s common sense.  I’ve been a Cubs fan since I can remember and I spend my summers year after year with these guys, so I’m bound to have a favorite or two. I noticed Geovany Soto a few years back and after that, he became my favorite. I’m not a huge fan of these blogs because I know I will be judged immediately, especially by guys who think that girls only watch sports because of the guys that play them, and trust me, that’s not the case with me…AT ALL. July was a rough month for me, and when I saw that Geovany Soto got traded I figured that my bad luck was still continuing. I decided not to talk to anyone and just stay away from Twitter and Facebook, because right away the mean comments towards Geo began pouring in. I don’t understand how some people enjoy being rude and mean.

It was my Father’s birthday and I was getting back from dinner. I had heard about Reed Johnson hugging all his teammates because he had gotten traded. As I walked in to my house I just wanted to enjoy whatever was left of the game, little did I know, I was about to find out terrible news. I turned on my TV, and the first thing I saw was Geo hugging Reed Johnson, I thought to myself that it was because Reed had been traded. Then, as I saw Geo making his way to his other teammates, I started to tear up and realize what was going on. Geovany Soto had been traded.

Soto’s final hit as a Cub

I don’t want you guys to think that I’m dramatic or super emotional, because I’m far from that, but it just didn’t come at a good time, not that it would have ever been a good time for it but you guys get the point. I’m actually quite surprised that I’ve taken it pretty well, but honestly, with every mean comment that came my way there was also an outpour of well wishes from my friends. Everyone knew that I was the biggest Soto fan out there, so as soon as the news about his trade broke out, my phone started to blow up. I even got flowers at work. I had to laugh about it because everyone was treating me as if it was something really really bad that had happened. Nonetheless, I am so grateful to every single one of you that called me, texted me, sent me Facebook messages, tweeted me or were there in person with me.

Soto was sent to Texas for minor league pitcher Jake Brigham. Geo has replaced Yorvit Torrealba as the Rangers’ backup catcher to Mike Napoli. Geo was with the Cubs organization for about 12 years…let’s look back at some of his accomplishments.

Soto was drafted by the Cubs in 2001, and since then had played his entire major league career in Chicago. 2008 was without a doubt Soto’s best year in his career.  He was voted as the National League Rookie of the Month in April 2008 after hitting .341 with 5 home runs, 8 doubles, and 20 RBIs, with an OPS of 1.059. On May 19, 2008, he scored his first career inside-the-park home run against the Houston Astros, and things only got better. Geo was selected to the 2008 Major League Baseball All-Star Game, but not only that, he was selected to be the National League’s starting catcher in the game, becoming the first rookie catcher ever to start on the National League All-Star team. It wasn’t all offensive feats for Soto though, on September 14, 2008 he called a no-hitter as he caught Carlos Zambrano against the Houston Astros at Miller Park in Milwaukee (due to Hurricane Ike moving through Houston at the time). To cap-off a great year, Geovany Soto was elected as the National League Rookie of the Year. He finished up the year with a .285 average, 23 home runs and 86 RBIs.

He has without a doubt been on the decline and hasn’t been the same since his 2008 year.

2009- .218, 11 HR, 47 RBIs

2010- .280, 17 HR, 53 RBIs (actually a pretty good year)

2011- .228, 17 HR, 54 RBIs

Ivy’s Soto jersey

He left the Cubs with a .199 batting average, 6 home runs and 14 RBIs. That is all that the haters seem to remember, but what do you expect. Geo did have some good years here and others not so great, but I really hope that he can turn things around and shut all the haters up. The one thing that makes me smile so much is that this last January, I got to meet him when I attended the Cubs Convention for the first time. Thanks to Anno, I got to meet my favorite (current) player before he got traded. In the most recent years, I have had two favorite Cubs. One was Rich Harden, and the other being Geovany Soto, ironically enough, they were both traded to the Rangers. Rich Harden didn’t really work out so I’m hoping that Geo does. I’m not sure what the Rangers have against me that they take all my men…lol. The Cubs will always be my team, but I would be lying if I said I am not rooting for the Rangers now. I wish Geo all the best and hopefully he can get a ring, he is still young and there is still plenty of time for him to turn things around.

Geovany Soto was not the best baseball player ever, but when you love someone, you look past all their flaws and support them no matter what. Geo, I wish you the best, and maybe one day you can come back and sport the Cubbie blue pin stripes once again.

Love,

Ivy.

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