Goatriders of the Apocalypse

Gamecast (July 24, 2010) Cardinals @ Cubs

This was from the gamecast comments from yesterday:

" I'm sure we annoy you Cubs fans plenty, but I believe it has to do with the fact that we (Cardinals) have had such great success over the years, and especially in the last decade, whereas you Cubs have had huge disappointments even in your best recent years, and of course the whole 102-year drought thing. Those two very different histories make us Cards fans sound smug and obnoxious when we think we are only teasing you guys; and conversely even your actual angry talk doesn't bother us much because your team hasn't been able to back up your talk. It's like the little brother that hates the big brother's teasing, whereas nothing the little guy says even phases big brother.

I suppose my pointing this out sounds smug and obnoxious to most of you, but I actually don't mean it to. It would be a LOT more fun if the Cubs were in the position of the Reds this year. Even though I generally pull for whoever is playing the Cubs, I simultaneously dream of the possibility of the Cards and Cubs playing for the pennant some year. THAT would be putting all the chips in the pot, eh?

As I post this, the Cubs are beating the Cards 5-zip in the opener, so my smugness is currently in check..."

Here's the deal, Token, I don't give a flying f&ck about the Cubs' 102 year "failure" as you guys like to throw in our face daily. That "history" has zero to do with this team and this organization. The Cubs may be playing somewhat poorly right now but this isn't your father's Cub organization. This team has zero connection to, for instance, the 1978 team that was the first team I followed as a young bright eyed eight year old. The truth is, going forward, the Cubs are going to be winning more championships than your Cardinals. Why? Because the Cubs can spend money you guys can't and at the moment, we also have a better farm system. This has more to do with reality than some stupid curse that only people like you like to perpetuate. Very few Cub fans actually believe in the "curse" or like to talk to about 100+ years of losing. That just has nothing to do with us today or our team. You may as well be teasing our team for playing in a stadium with vines on the walls. That is why I am annoyed by you guys. It's tired. We've heard it. We don't enjoy the losing. Your opinion of both the current Cubs organization and Cubs fans is just wrong. Find a new way to "tease" us.
Today's Matchup: Blake Hawskworth (59.1IP, 4.85ERA, 4.41xFIP) vs Tom Gorzelanny (80.2IP, 3.12ERA, 4.02xFIP)

Whew, after that rant, let's preview this game. It's already going but I will pretend it hasn't started yet. Gorz has been very good since coming back into the rotation. The key to his game is not to walk more than a batter or so every three innings and keep blowing people away. Hawksworth is nothing more than a mediocre middle reliever. Mediocre middle relievers rarely become decent starting pitchers. Dave Duncan, after Suppan yesterday, and Hawksworth today, doesn't look like such a miracle worker.

Who's Hot: Alfonso Soriano hasn't had too many of his patented hot streaks this year but so far, he's producing at a .380 wOBA, which would be a career high, and he's stayed healthy. Like Soto, he probably should be moved up in the order but it's kind of amazing to me how much better the Cubs' offense would be had Ramirez and Lee just had normal seasons this year.

Who's Not: Coming into today the Cardinals offense has gone two straight games without scoring a run. That's the first time in 15 years that has happened. That that occured after an eight game winning streak is beyond unlikely. I doubt this continues but it would be nice if Gorz could put another big zero on the board today.

Conclusion: A win would be nice. I ranted above and mostly about the Cubs but I wanted to point something out. In the last 3 years, the Cubs have won 2 division titles, the Cardinals have won 1. Just saying.....

Misunderstood AGAIN

I agree completely with you, Sayers: even going back a few years on a team is irrelevant -- a 50% turnover in personnel probably makes for an entirely new team.

I also agree completely that there is no such thing as a curse, in baseball or mummies or anything else. I don't perpetuate believing in the curse, I joke about it just like you guys do -- or is the Goat reference in GROTA not about the "cause" of the curse?

I'm sure you don't appreciate constant references to the 100+ year drought. Let me point out that I wasn't EXACTLY throwing that in your faces, I was trying to explain why we might come off so annoying to you guys. Again, isn't the Apocalypse reference in GROTA sort of referring to the drought?

You guys (not you specifically, Sayers, but most of the rest of the regular bloggers) put down the Cubs WAY more than I ever have on this blog. Is this a case of, "we can make fun of our team, but you Cards fans can't"? Well, fair enough if that's how you feel, but I AM a registered member of this blog; and besides, I thought my teasing was pretty mild. Of course, you likewise have the right to object as strenuously as you want. But my opinion of the Cubs organization and fans is formed primarily by reading GROTA and has nothing to do with the curse and ALMOST nothing to do with the 100+ years thing.

I guess we shall see whose team wins more championships going forward. I can't really speak to the farm systems, I don't follow that much; but regarding more money to spend, you guys spent practically the whole first half of the season complaining about how the Cubs MISSPENT all that money. I guess you're counting on that improving going forward.

I can't argue with your last dig, about the last 3 years and division winners. I could talk about relative success in just the past decade, but I already agreed above that that would be irrelevant to comparing today's teams. I'll just point out that there's an excellent chance that after this season the score will be 2 division titles apiece -- or 2 to 1, Cardinals advantage, if we're going to stick with only 3 years back. Just saying...

One final fun fact, believe it or not: my father happened to be born in... 1908. So you WISH this was my fathers' Cub organization. (And honestly, I really like the vines on your walls.)


Just a few points:

There are two things that critics of the Cubs and their fans do that annoy me to extreme and it's so common among Cardinals fans, I feel like it's almost Turrett's Syndrome with them.

The first thing they do is point to the "100 years of failure" as if not winning a world championship makes a team a "failure". That may not be you but it sure is damned annoying. The second thing is to suggest that Cub fans like it when the Cubs lose, like somehow it makes us happy to just sit in the sun and drink beers and lose game after game. Well, along with the fact that they haven't been that team in quite some time, I just think it's a lie about the average Cub fan. For us, winning it all is simply going to be 10,000 times better than it is for fans of any other team because it will be the end of that bullshit.

You are welcome to comment on the site but if you do, just realize that I and others will come after you from time to time. That's the way we roll here.

Oh and about the Goat. Obviously, I wasn't here when the name was created (talk to Kurt and Rob) but I think it's creative, don't you? How many other sports organizations have so many things that can be called iconic. Even before you get to the losing, you have other things like the ivy, the goat, the black cat, the brick, the wind, the W flag, the seventh inning stretch and so on so forth. A lot of that is tied in a way to the losing and while I want that to stop (and for teams and people to treat the current Cubs the same way they do most other organizations) but I love the icons. I mean, you call a blog "Goat Riders of the Apocalypse" and if you have any knowledge of the Chicago Cubs, you know right away which team it refers to.

Oh and about the spending money, hey I was never the one complaining. I thought it was awesome that Hendry bought the Cubs back to back "shots" (because that's all you get if you're a major league team, shots at the world series) and while I think the Cubs are nowing paying for that a little, this is easily the shallowist "down swing" that I've ever seen for the Cubs and I've been following them quite actively for over 30 years. All teams go through down swings and I believe the Cubs are on a two year down swing right now. I giggle sometimes at how some of my co writers (all of whom I love, btw) act like this is the end of the world. It isn't. Teams lose for a couple of years, even the Yankees had a season where they missed the playoffs and they are the Yankees. The Cubs will be fine. After 2012, the Cardinals are going to find it very difficult to win the division for some time to come. Hopefully during that period we can put an end to all the talk of the Cubs never winning.


OK, I can believe that the "100+ year" reference would get pretty old; I'll try to hold off on that, not so much out of deference to your feelings, but if the "joke" has gone stale, it's gone stale.

The suggestion that Cubs fans like it when the Cubs lose -- I don't know where that one even comes from. I know lots of Cubs fans, and they all seem to pretty much hate the losing, just like the fans of every other team in the world. So I promise not to use that one, I don't even get it.

I'm TOTALLY OK with you or anyone else coming after me from time to time regarding my comments. I just want to make sure I'm understood correctly and not yelled at for things I didn't even say (or mean).

Yes, Sayers, I DO like the Goat reference in the GROTA name. I started reading this blog in the first place because I liked the name -- it signified to me that you guys didn't take yourselves TOO seriously. I know you're serious about your team, and about winning, and so on, but not too serious about YOURSELVES, which is a trait I admire in people generally. I like Rob's irascibility, I like Kurt's reasonableness, I like your optimism, Sayers. Hell, I'm a Cardinals fan, but I read this blog almost every day, so I obviously like the website. Just want you to understand where I'm coming from.

Now, even though part of me wants the Cubs to go 0-162 every year, there is another part of me that thinks it would be the best season ever if the Cards and Cubs were battling it out for the division some year. You seem to think that could happen after 2012; actually, you seem to be saying you'll be up and we'll be down. We shall see. You guys keep this blog going, I'll keep reading, and... we shall see.

Obnoxious St. Charles fans

There are a good Cards fans and their "dick" Cardinals fans. It is the latter category which alienate Cubs fans. I have a buddy who is a Cards fan who knows only one catcher's name, yet he is very very obnoxious. Luckily, he toned down his rhetoric when the Blackhawks won the Cup and I pointed out that the Blues are the Cubs of the NHL.


This is the first year in a while that the Cubs/Cardinals aren't even relevant to what is going on in the Central. You take away half of the losses the Cubs endured to the Pirates and it becomes very interesting at this point in the season. Since the All-Star break, the Cubs seem to be moving forward... The Cardinals were red hot before they got came to Wrigley... Maybe not so much now. How nice it would be IF it WAS relevant.

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