I am going to write a new article about the Cubs every month of the 2006 Cubs season. Here is issue #1.

August 2006

Trade Deadline
Well that trade deadline has passed and Jim Hendry has done was he was supposed to and unloaded Maddux and Walker. I love both of those guys but they are not in our future plans so I am fine with these moves. Izturis could be a long time solution at SS if he can stay healthy. I am interested in seeing how Cedeno can handle the move to 2B. I have been wondering why the Cubs are so down on Walker. That guy can hit and he plays 2b just fine but they obviously don't think so. Back to Maddux, the cool thing about trading him is that there is a chance that he could come back as a free agent at the end of the year. I think he might have some gas left in his tank and he is fine as a #4 or #5 starter.

Play the Kids
I think that the Cubs have finally admitted this season is over an they will have to play the kids. They need to play them every day and see if they all have legit major league talent. I want to see Murton, Pagan, Cedeno, Izturis, Guzman, Hill, Marmol, Theriot, Wuertz, and Marshall. No one knows if these guys are going to be big league stars but we now have 60 games to find out if they can handle big league pitchers and hitters. Cubs fans seem to support this team if they would have 9 Augie Ojedas out there. So play the kids!

Lee, Prior, and Wood
It is easy to say that this season's failure is directly related to the Cubs injuries. But every team has to deal with injuries. The Cardinals had to deal with Pujoles being out. The Yankees have to deal with Sheffield and Matsui being out. What could the Cubs have done? The easy answer is not getting these injury prone guys in the 1st place. Beyond that, they need guys in the minors ready to fill in if one of our soldiers goes down. The Cubs AAA team really doesn't have any Major League ready guys. Major league rosters have 25 spots on them. Dusty uses his whole bench. I think the Cubs have to start thinking about finding more guys like Maddux and Pierre who are ready and healthy to play every day.

Greg Maddux is gone but maybe not for long. I think my dad mentioned the other day that the Cubs should offer Maddux the 2007 Cubs pitching coach job. And how about Sandberg as hitting coach. And Joe Girardi as manager. Maddux said he doesn't want to walk away from the game yet so how about giving him a full time coaching job. I know the money won't be the same but I am sure he could support his family on 1 million a year. As for Girardi, it is my understanding that he has something put in his Marlins contract to get out of it if his dream job came up. That has to be the Cubs job. If the Cubs are moving away from Baker, they have to go after Girardi.

White Sox
The past year or so I have been telling people that I am also a White Sox fan. But I have to admit that their struggles lately have made it a lot easier to deal with the Cubs horrible season. Because it feels just as bad when the Cubs lose as it does hearing from White Sox fans how great the Sox are. But lately they have played real bad. And I am actually happy about this. I am sick of the Sox being perfect and doing nothing wrong. I hope they don't make the playoffs so we can see what a disappointment they were this year. But for the record, if they do go on to the playoffs I will be cheering for them louder than most Sox fans.