Road to Opening Day: #28

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The Cubs have yet to win a Cactus League game this spring, but hey, it’s spring training!  Unfortunately for Cubs fans, shortstop Starlin Castro tweaked his hamstring, but they’re downplaying it so I guess we don’t have to worry too much:

 

 

Darwin Barney got another hit, increasing his potential trade value.  Javier Baez and Kris Bryant also got to play.  For Monday’s game, Carrie Muskat has the lineups:

 

 

The B-Game lineup:

Alcantara 2B
Almora CF
Olt 1B
Bryant 3B
Kottaras C
Soler DH
Vitters LF
Szczur RF
Valdez SS

Hammel P

And against the Brewers in Maryvale:

Coghlan LF
Roberts 2B
Valbuena 3B
Lake CF
Baez SS
Cunningham DH
Baker C
Valaika 1B
McDonald RF

Jokisch P

There might be tweaks to the lineups by game time, but hey, that’s spring training for ya.  Keep up with our countdown lineup as we continue our journey to Opening Day.

Ballhawking

I went ballhawking once at Wrigley Field just to see what it was like.  It was a particularly good game to get some potential street balls, as the Cubs were hosting the Philadelphia Phillies that day.  The Phillies had prodigious power guys like Ryan Howard, Jayson Werth and Raul Ibanez.  The Cubs had plenty of guys who could slam the ball to Waveland, plus Tyler Colvin, who for all the crap we give him had a ton of power.  And so I thought I’d get a good shot at a souvenir.

As luck would have it, nobody hit a home run that day.  The Cubs scored their lone run on a Ryan Theriot squeeze bunt hit that allowed Starlin Castro to scamper home, and then Carlos Marmol happened in the ninth to walk the world and cement another loss.  I kept hoping whenever Aramis Ramirez, Alfonso Soriano or Geovany Soto came up, but no dice.  I did get a chance to take some nice pictures though, and interacted with a few of the regular ballhawks.WavelandWrigleyView

The ballhawks didn’t really seem to have a strategy, other than the obvious.  They would keep tabs on who was hitting by either listening to the radio call or the public address announcer blaring past the bleacher walls, and then station themselves accordingly.  If it was a lefty batter, they would bike over to Sheffield.  Then they would come right back to Waveland.  I personally stayed at Waveland because I enjoyed the shade and the view of the scoreboard from there.

I’m glad for the neighborhood flavor of Wrigley Field and hope they can figure out a way to appease the neighbors so the Cubs can play in a modernized stadium for years to come.  At some point they will have to literally rebuild, but that was a fun experience that I think every fan should try once, even if no homers were hit that day.

28 days.  Four more weeks.  It’s getting closer, folks.

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