Found December 19, 2012 on Obstructed View OLD:
Hi. I'm AC, AndCounting for long, and I am a Cubs blogger. It's been two months since my last post. I stayed clean for as long as I could, but I decided that it was time to get off the wagon. Or on the wagon. Or on the bandwagon. Or onto the main wagon where they let the real fans ride. Honestly, I don't understand the rules about wagons (band or standard), so I'll go ahead and steer clear of wagonisms from this point forward. If this were a confessional, it would include details like, oh, I don't know, that I have no clue who the Cubs have traded for or signed or not signed, that I don't know who Rant Sports is, and that I have neither confidence nor a clue why that might be funny. But this is not a confessional. It's not about me, per se, or my lack of involvement on this blog or Cubdom in general. This is about what it is like to be involved on any level with the Cubs. And it’s about how there are five of them. 1. Cub level If you are on the Chicago Cubs, you’re on this list. Now, there are probably sublevels to this and all the levels. There are starting players, bench players, guys on the 40-man roster, front office staff, scouts, varying levels of Ricketts. But, you get it. If you’re part of the team, you’re part of the team. And that’s pretty involved. 2. Season ticket holder level This is not just season ticket holders. Actually, there are season ticket holders who I really wouldn’t include in this list. The gist behind this list is the type of passion that compels someone to buy tickets to and/or attend as many Cubs games as possible. That passion is shared by many people who never attend Cubs games. It is lacking in many season ticket holders (I’m speaking specifically about those corporate/commercial entrants in the STH market; I’m not calling into question the loyalty of fans who attend the games). I don’t give a flying bison burger how much money you spend on the Cubs. This STH-level of involvement is what some people consider die-hard and what others consider idiotic. If you spend eight hours on a Cubs blog every day, you’re in this category. If you call in to every post-game show, you’re in this category. If you spend more time on a typical day discussing or thinking about the Cubs than an actual Cub spends doing his job, you’re probably in this category. The bottom line: if you’re involved with the Cubs on a level-2 basis, you spend way too much time and/or money worrying about this crap team. And that’s okay. I’ve been there. That’s who I am. Or who I was. Who I intend to be again. Again, there are sublevels. If your blood is actually blue in color, great. If you live, breathe, eat, sleep, and **** Cubs baseball, fine. If you just talk about them a lot, that’s cool, too. We can all share a category. The thing we all hold in common is that the plight of the Cubs has stricken us with some skewed emotional connection that causes to actually try to devote our resources to seeing them do well and actually figuring out ways that they could improve. We’ve somehow associated an inordinate part of our well-being with the results of their games and seasons. It’s disgusting and awesome. 3.  Viewer level These people watch the games and care. They do. But when the game is over, the grieving process (or rare period of jubilation) ends relatively soon after. A category-3 fan doesn’t know what time the game is, but he or she will ask someone occasionally. Seeing games is a distraction from life, not the other way around. For beginning of this year, this was about where I was at, a bummer of a stretch for a Cubs blogger. I know, I know, it’s not about me, but I use myself as in illustration (and maybe not for the last time). I tried to watch the games, and I was glad when I could. Cubs baseball was a nice little getaway, but it was not the Disneyland of my escapism. More like a Six Flags or maybe just the merry-go-round at the mall. These people still get pissed when the Cubs lose and happy when the Cubs win, but the game is just a game. Except when it’s a really awesome come-from-behind game or the Cardinals and umpires and the ghost of Mike Quade conspire to screw us in the ninth. 4. Nominal Cubs fan level This is when you have to have an answer for “who’s your team?” and “the Cubs” is your answer. You didn’t see the game. You don’t know who won. You don’t know how to spell Samardzija. Samardzijia? Samardziajia? Is he even still on the team? Was he ever? Who’s coaching these days? This is where I am right now. There’s just too much. Baseball isn’t even a distraction. It’s a big fat pile of wanton neglect. I’m too lazy regarding baseball to even bother to look up wanton to see if I used it properly. Stuff like changing your faith, leaving your job, going through a divorce, and recommitting yourself to everything you believe is true in this world will do that to a person. I imagine James Earl Jones has a speech for these people. For me. There must be some earth-shaking words to conjure up the spirit of baseball past or to instill some passion for the game the way Ryne Sandberg tells us it is meant to be played, or . . . or . . . I don’t know, lend me a ****, so I can pretend to give it. But for class-4 fans, the fire just ain’t there, not even a candle. On our hearts, there’s a picture of a dim light bulb with a Cubs logo on it. Woo. Hoo. 5. Not Cubs fans I mean, seriously. Just plain not liking them at all is actually an option. It works for some people. But. It’s not me. It’s not you. It’s not us. We’re attached to this team like soft on Tony Campana. And just like the Cubs, we’re not going anywhere.

An updated look at the 2013 rotation

The Cubs finalized contracts with Edwin Jackson and Carlos Villanueva today, which gives the Cubs something like 18 starters. I lost count. The good news is that Edwin Jackson is actually good unlike the other 22 starters they signed this offseason. Jackson has been underrated for some time and that's in part to how miserably he performed when he reached the big leagues. According...

Carlos Villanueva, Scott Baker and Scott Feldman combine to make one slightly below average starting pitcher

The Cubs have gone a little nutty in signing as many back-end of the rotation starters as they can find. They grabbed Scott Feldman who would be the worst starter in many rotations and the Cubs rotation is no different. They did sign Scott Baker though he's coming back from injury so we have temper expectations. Then they signed Carlos Villanueva, who hasn't been any good...

Dave Cameron on the Edwin Jackson signing

Dave Cameron wrote a bit about the Cubs signing of Edwin Jackson. Here's part of it. But we should note that Edwin Jackson makes them better, and this price for Edwin Jackson is still completely reasonable based on his established performance level. That the Cubs aren’t yet obvious contenders shouldn’t cause us to tell them to stop trying to improve. By bringing in Jackson...

Better Know a Cub: Alfonso Soriano

On November 19, 2006, Alfonso Soriano signed the 5th-largest contract in Major League History (to that point, by total dollars). Coming off a season in which the Fonz hit .277/.351/.560 and joined the 40/40 club, the deal looked like a pretty good sized overpay, but the cost of doing business with a premier free agent [...]

The 5 Levels of Cubs Involvement

Hi. I'm AC, AndCounting for long, and I am a Cubs blogger. It's been two months since my last post. I stayed clean for as long as I could, but I decided that it was time to get off the wagon. Or on the wagon. Or on the bandwagon. Or onto the main wagon where [...]

Cubs Rumors: Chicago Frontrunner for Edwin Jackson

Yesterday it was reported that free agent Edwin Jackson had narrowed his list of suitors down to two teams; the Chicago Cubs and Texas Rangers. Now, Jim Bowden of ESPN is saying that the Cubs are the frontrunner for Jackson. Cubs now the front runner for Edwin Jackson as negotiations continue with both Cubs and Rangers..4 yrs and approx 52 m is ball park #source — JIM BOWDEN...

Cubs Sign Carlos Villanueva The Cubs have reportedly signed Carlos Villanueva to an undisclosed deal. Barring some unexpected turn of events (like Bob Nightengale involving the Nippon Ham Fighters in some insane bidding war), this appears to be final. What does it mean for the Cubs? I'm not sure what the contract is, but almost certainly...

AP source: Cubs reach deal with RHP Edwin Jackson

A person familiar with the situation tells The Associated Press that the Chicago Cubs have agreed to a four-year, $52 million contract with right-hander Edwin Jackson. The person spoke Thursday on the condition of anonymity because the deal had not been announced. Several outlets had previously reported the agreement. The Cubs will be the eighth team in 11 years for the 29-year...

Cubs Get A Starting Pitcher (Allegedly)

Jon Heyman (and others) are reporting that the Cubs have signed SP Carlos Villanueva, formerly of the Toronto Blue Jays. The 29-year old swingman ran up career highs in innings (125.1) and games started(16) last year for the Blue Jays. Depsite a fastball that won't get over 90 too often, he manages nearly 8 K/9(7.8 to be exact) for his career and a 3.1 BB/9. He's a bit prone...

Edwin Jackson signs with Cubs for four years, $52 million

Edwin Jackson has chosen to sign with the Chicago Cubs. Four-years and $52 million are pretty good reasons. Multiple teams had interst in the 29-year-old but yesterday the bidding was between the Cubs and Texas Rangers. In Chicago, Jackson will join a staff that includes Matt Garza, Jeff Samardzija, Scott Feldman and Travis Wood. The team also has Scott Baker who should return in...

Cubs Sign Pitcher Carlos Villanueva

With Scott Baker still recovering from Tommy John surgery, the Chicago Cubs wanted to add another starter and give themselves some options during the 2013 season.  They did just that by signing Carlos Villanueva. The details of the contract were not known last night, but Patrick Mooney of CSN Chicago confirms the Cubs were finalizing the deal last night.  Villanueva split...

Source: Cubs, Villanueva close to deal

The Chicago Cubs, continuing to add depth to their pitching staff, are close to signing free-agent right-hander Carlos Villanueva, according to a major-league source. Villanueva, 29, spent the past two seasons as a swingman with the Toronto Blue Jays, contributing as both a starter and reliever. The Cubs' rotation currently consists of Matt Garza, Jeff Samardzija, Travis Wood...

Report: Cubs closing in on Edwin Jackson

The Chicago Cubs are closing in on four-year, $52 million deal with free-agent pitcher Edwin Jackson, according to an ESPN The Magazine report. Jackson, 29, went 10-11 with a 4.03 ERA in 189 2/3 innings with the Washington Nationals in 2012, after signing a one-year, $11-million deal with them. The Nationals didn't make a qualifying offer, so they won't receive draft-pick...

Cubs sign Carlos Villanueva

The Chicago Cubs have signed Carlos Villanueva to a two-year, $10mm deal, Jon Heyman of CBS Sports reports. Villanueva spent the last two seasons in Toronto posting a combined 4.11 ERA, while splitting time in the rotation and the bullpen. Last season in 38 games (16 starts) Villanueva went 7-7 with a 4.16 ERA with a 8.8 K/9. Image taken by Keith Allison and used under the Creative...
Cubs News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.