Thursday, July 28, 2011

Sox Trade Up For Bullpen Help; Two Eras End In Chicago

     The last few days in Chicago have been eventful. The White Sox and Cubs have both hit the trading spree before the trade deadline on July 31st, while the Bears have been quick to fill their 90 man roster. The Bears long time punter Brad Maynard, a fan favorite and to teammate Robbie Gould "an unsung hero" to the Bears organization, will not be resigned. The Bears told Maynard he would not be coming back after the team's NFC Championship loss the Green Bay Packers. According to several sources,the Bears recently signed punter Adam Podlesh. Podlesh was selected in the fourth round of the 2007 draft by the Jacksonville Jaguars. Podlesh put up career numbers in 2010 with  43.8-yard gross average, a 39.2-yard net average and 26 punts inside-the-20 and selected as a Pro Bowl alternate. 
     For the Southsiders, pitcher Edwin Jackson and infielder Mark Teahen were traded on Wednesday to the Toronto Blue Jays for relief pitcher Jason Frasor and minor league pitcher Zach Stewart. While Teahen, who batted .203 in 51 games, will stay with the Blue Jays, Jackson was traded then to the St. Louis Cardinals alongside others from the Blue Jays including former Chicago athletes Octavio Dotel and *time for a pause and long angry sigh* Corey Patterson. Jackson, with a record of 7 wins and 7 losses and a 3.92 ERA, became valuable by giving up two runs in 15 innings. For White Sox fans, this is a good trade. Not only do you get a key pitcher in the bullpen who has a 2.98 ERA in 44 games, but you also have a regular 5 man rotation. This whole season the White Sox have been having a hell with a 6 pitcher rotation. One thing I've been questioning is Ozzie putting Phil Humber in the bullpen, a man who surprised everybody. Has he had a few bad starts? Sure. But why Ozzie put him there in the first place just baffles me. With Teahen gone, the White Sox called up outfielder Alejandro De Aza, who homered in his first plate appearance. De Aza may also be taking over the struggling Alex Rios' position.   
     Now onto the Cubs. Waking up this morning and reading that outfielder Kosuke Fukudome was traded to the Cleveland Indians for two prospects, outfielder Abner Abreu and right-hander Carlton Smith. Tyler Colvin was called up to join the team in Milwaukee. Fukudome who was hitting .279 with three home runs and 13 RBIs in 87 games, first came to the Cubs in 2008. I'll never forget the hype and excitement that brought to Cubs fans before the season. A Chicago Sun Times headline line read "SAYONARA" with the sub headline being "As the Cubs release Mark Prior, another era in Chicago Cubs history starts" of course meaning the signing of Fukudome.In 2007, the Cubs came out of nowhere to win the division and 2008 looked promising. On Opening Day, the Cubs were down 0-3 in the 9th, when Fukudome smashed a 3-run home run to the right field bleachers. Fukudome would continue to have a great first half, becoming an All Star. Then Fukudome slumped as the Cubs were swept out of the playoffs. As the years went on, Cubs fans grew disappointed in the former Japanese baseball star. Fukudome recently has not been terrible, but not what we wanted. Now the Fukudome era in Chicago has ended. Sayonara Kouske. 

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