Road to Opening Day: #24

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The Cubs put a ton of guys on and still couldn’t score even one run today.  Bad luck, bad execution, but again…just spring training.  At least Travis Wood pitched well:

 

 

The Cubs kick off the weekend with split squad action, with one half visiting the Angels while the other half hosts the Indians at home.  Here are the lineups from Carrie Muskat because Anno hates attributing tweets for some reason:

Let’s keep going with our countdown lineup

The Old and the New

I was going to go another direction with this one, but on Thursday we found out that the doctor who invented Tommy John surgery, Frank Jobe, had passed away.  Jobe’s pioneering procedure has touched many pitchers over the years, including Cubs pitchers.  It used to be that an elbow injury was a death sentence to a pitcher’s career; now, it’s a one-year rehab stint and the pitcher is back in action.  Small miracles.

Of course we’ve seen a few pitchers on this generation of Cubs go through Tommy John as well.  Kerry Wood had to undergo the procedure the season after his great pitching performance.  Ryan Dempster had the procedure prior to signing with the Cubs, and then was successfully converted back to a starting pitcher before he was traded and won his World Series ring with the Boston Red Sox last year.  Arodys Vizcaino is starting to come back from his Tommy John and was reported to be throwing 98 mph gas in his bullpen sessions.

It’s not exactly open heart surgery, but it can’t be argued that Dr. Jobe’s invention saved the livelihoods of many talented pitchers.  Stephen Strasburg, Adam Wainwright, and Matt Harvey still have good shots at long, successful careers because of Tommy John surgery.  Pitching is such an unnatural motion that injuries are almost guaranteed to crop up at some point.  It is no wonder that pitchers, sportswriters and others are mourning the loss of Dr. Jobe.  Without him, Kerry Wood’s story would have ended right at that rookie season, and Ryan Dempster would be nothing more than an afterthought (well, to some he kind of is anyway, but I digress).

24 more days until Opening Day.

About Rice Cube

Rice Cube is the executive vice president of snark at World Series Dreaming. He loves all things Cubs, with notable exceptions (specifically, the part of Cubs fandom that pisses him off). Follow on Twitter at cubicsnarkonia

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