And...this is what is wrong with Cub Fandom
I knew my post yesterday about Derrek (DP) Lee would rankle Sayers40, but the rest of you?
Please, let's face facts here. Nice man. Good looking man. Devoted to his wife and children, as far as we know. No arrests, no rumors, no illicit drugs. Lives his life with grace and dignity. Faced a debilitating disease that threatened his daughter's eyesight and possibly more without complaining, without taking it out on the press. Would love it if he were my neighbor (because that would mean I myself would be living in a more prosperous part of town).
Has always been a fantasy league darling. Used to be able to run some, stole bases. Had a monstrous year in 2005, also had a monstrous 4 months last year. Has a World Series ring as a member of the Marlins in 2003, which I do not begrudge him at all. He is not Dusty Baker, Mark Prior, Alex Gonzalez, or Moises Alou. He is not even Juan Pierre, Luis Castillo, Miguel Cabrera, Josh Beckett or Jack McKeon, all of which, frankly, had more to do with shaping the 2003 NLCS than Lee.
But I do not hate Derrek Lee. How could you?
But if you are really going to sit there and say that "you didn't see this coming", then you haven't been a frequent reader here. Three years ago, it occurred to me that in tight games, with runners on base, he was most willing to take walks, when the situation called for action. I went out here and said it, and you all jumped down my throat.
Two years ago, when the Cubs won 97 games, Lee led the major leagues in GIDP. I went out here and complained about it, and you all called me a killjoy.
Last year, I did not CALL for the team to replace him with Micah Hoffpauir, but simply for everyone to consider using a man who, in relation to Zambrano, Ramirez, Soriano, Bradley and Fukudome, had a favorable contract and possibly using him in some fashion to shore up the two huge gaps we had at the time, namely Leadoff Hitter and Staff Ace. Gaps which did end up biting us on the ass, well, that and fat Geo, dislocated Aramis and limpy Alf.
And yes, from June forward last year, he hit very well, while Hoffpauir didn't do dick.
But have you forgotten? We did not make the playoffs last year? We did not make the playoffs in 2004, his first year. Or in 2005, his best year?
In fact, his three least productive offensive years in our uniform were 2006-2008, and of course, we won the division in 2007 and 2008.
There is NO statistical correlation, Colin-breath, between Lee Success and Cubs Success. I can recall Aramis Ramirez homers to win games, Alfonso Soriano homers to start games, Ryan Theriot hits to start rallies, great catches by Reed Johnson and Fukudome...hell, I can even recall a couple of special Mark DeRosa moments in 2007-2008, and folks, it truly took confidence in my own manhood to admit that.
Really, put down the goddamned kool-aid for a second, use the logical side of your brain for once, and ask yourself this question:
I realize that he is a good human being, but what exactly has Derrek Lee ever done to put the Chicago Cubs over the top?
(Besides beat the Sox once with a homer. Whippty damn doo.)
I know it is just a movie, but in "Little Big League", the kindly bench coach (played by the guy who was Taggart in "Beverly Hills Cop") advises Billy Heyward that he can't be a fan anymore, that he has to use his head, and not his heart, when assessing his team's chances. The Cubs have not won in 102 years, and they are no closer to a World Series than they usually are. Honestly: they don't deserve your heart, at this point. They deserve a kick in the ass.
Once again: you want to root for the Cubs with your heart? Go over and hang out with Al, he'll stroke your head and tell you what a great player Derrek Lee is. Here, at GROTA, we root for the Cubs with our heads - both of them!!