11:28 AM EDT, Wed May 27, 2020
May 1, 2020
Today in MLB history: They played 26 innings in Boston and nobody won

Today in MLB history: They played 26 innings in Boston and nobody won

Braves Field in Boston | Photo by Transcendental Graphics/ The longest game in major-league history happened 100 years ago today. The game between the Boston Braves and Brooklyn Robins on Saturday, May 1, 1920 shouldn’t have happened at all. Per the SABR account of this game, it rained all morning in Boston and it was still “overcast, damp and raw” when the scheduled starting time, 3 p.m., arrived. Even so, they played. And played. And played some more. The Robins (as the Dodgers were known in that time, after their manager, Wilbert Robinson) scored a run on an RBI single in the...
May 1, 2020
An exclusive interview with the simCubs manager

An exclusive interview with the simCubs manager

Photo by Will Powers/Icon Sportswire via Brandon Palmer is his name. He talks inside baseball, David Ross’ absence and whiskey. Hello, BCB. I am intrepid reporter Ray Renfield, and I’ll be a fly on the wall, reporting the goings-on behind the scenes, as it were, with the simulated Chicago Cubs 2020 squad and their skipper, the erudite and quite odd Brandon Palmer. RR — Brandon, fill the readers in our your background... BP — Hi Ray. Good to meetcha. I was born and raised in Bahston and knew the Epsteins. My great-uncle Artie was Theo’s dad’s mechanic. My grand-uncle,...
May 1, 2020
FanPost Friday: What are you doing without baseball?

FanPost Friday: What are you doing without baseball?

Photo by Joshua Blanchard/ Watching old games? Reading baseball books? It’s a tough time to be a baseball fan right now. There seems to be a constant churn of news about the anticipated return of the game we all love, but at the same time, nothing actually tangible we can mark on our calendars. If you’re anything like me, you’ve probably had to cancel travel plans you spent a lot of time working on, you’re missing your baseball family — you know, the usual rowdies you spot at home games — and you would do just about anything for an overpriced hot dog and beer. So while...
May 1, 2020
If Cubs baseball is played in 2020, spring training could resume at... Wrigley Field

If Cubs baseball is played in 2020, spring training could resume at... Wrigley Field

Photo by Scott Olson/ This is part of MLB’s newest plan for a season this year. Several different plans for having a 2020 Major League Baseball season have been discussed by owners and players. Among them is one to play in teams’ home ballparks without fans, which I detailed here Wednesday. Now, we learn that these empty ballparks could be used for a “spring training” resumption, according to Bob Nightengale of USA Today: The move would be driven by an interest in saving time and money, with training camps expected to last three weeks before the start of the truncated regular...
May 1, 2020
MLB Bullets won’t be in the Hall of Fame this year

MLB Bullets won’t be in the Hall of Fame this year

Photo by Jim McIsaac/ Alas, no Hall of Fame ceremonies in Cooperstown in 2020 For many, the annual induction ceremony of the Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown marks the high point of the baseball season. It’s usually late July and the season has resumed from the All-Star break. We have a good sense of how the divisions are shaking out, and who needs to get busy if they’re going to make it to the postseason. It’s also a time to remind ourselves of how great baseball and those who play it can be, as we honor and remember the best of the best. Unfortunately, in 2020 there will be...
May 1, 2020
Baseball history unpacked, May 1

Baseball history unpacked, May 1

Mike Fyhrie | Cubs, simCubs, and MLB news and notes The simCubs ran their record to 22-10 with a victory over the Diamondbacks at Chase Field, winning by six runs in a game that hinged on the Cubs’ epic sixth inning, in which nine men came to the plate and five scored. Lots of highlights from that game: Same two teams today, with Jose Quintana (01, 6.93) once again trying to get past the fourth inning, opposing D-back Zac Gallen (1-3, 5.34), who has 19 walks in 30⅓ innings and has coincidentally given up 18 earned runs in that span. He throws the knuckle-curve and...
Apr 30, 2020
Sara’s Diary, Day 49 without baseball: Crowds are strange now

Sara’s Diary, Day 49 without baseball: Crowds are strange now

The scene at Murphy’s Bleachers during the 2016 NLCS | Photo by Jamie Squire/ Even in Wrigleyville Chicago has been cold, gray and unwelcoming for the better part of three days now. I took advantage of a break in the constant rain this morning to go for a short walk. It is one of those days where the temperature is highly dependent on the wind. With no wind my light jacket was fine, but then one of those brutal Chicago gusts would howl down the street. I almost lost my hat on multiple occasions. I definitely let some expletives fly behind my Cubs mask. I was heading home with a well...
Apr 30, 2020
Chicago Cubs vs. Arizona Diamondbacks simulated game, Thursday 4/30, 3 p.m. CT

Chicago Cubs vs. Arizona Diamondbacks simulated game, Thursday 4/30, 3 p.m. CT

Photo by Christian Petersen/ The simCubs come to the simulated desert having won three in a row and four of five. One thing is for sure: There won’t be any rain on our sim games for the next four days, as the simCubs head to the desert to play the simDiamondbacks at Chase Field. Also, remember: This would have been an 8:40 p.m. CT start. So — you don’t have to stay up till midnight Central time to see the end! Here are highlights from the simCubs’ win Wednesday over the simPirates, including David Bote’s walkoff homer in the 13th inning: Here are the simCubs results and...
Apr 30, 2020
Cubs unsung heroes: Alan Benes, August 27, 2002

Cubs unsung heroes: Alan Benes, August 27, 2002

Photo by Jonathan Daniel / The younger brother of a well-known Padre and Cardinal had one big game as a Cub. Andy Benes was a solid rotation starter for 14 years in the major leagues, mostly with the Padres and Cardinals. San Diego had made him their No. 1 pick in 1988. Five years later, Andy’s younger brother Alan Benes was selected in the first round (16th overall) by the Cardinals. In doing so they passed on Torii Hunter and Jason Varitek, among others. Alan Benes pitched briefly for the Cardinals from 1995-97, posting a 3.5 bWAR season in ‘97, then suffered shoulder injuries that...
Apr 30, 2020
What’s the best Cubs jersey ever?

What’s the best Cubs jersey ever?

Kris Bryant and Anthony Rizzo in the current, iconic Cubs home pinstripe jersey | Photo by Jamie Squire/ I’ve selected five Cubs jerseys that I think stand above the rest. Which one is the best? Since 1957, the basic Cubs home jersey has remained the same — white, with blue pinstripes, with the iconic “UBS” inside a large “C” logo on the left side. There have been minor modifications in the type of fabric used, and the “CUBS” logo has changed a bit over the years, but that’s more than 60 years of essentially the same look at Wrigley Field. But it wasn’t always that...
Apr 30, 2020
The minor league baseball season might be about to be cancelled

The minor league baseball season might be about to be cancelled

Four Winds Field, home of the South Bend Cubs | Al Yellon ... according to one report, which was swiftly denied. Even while Major League Baseball discusses several different ideas to begin a 2020 season, it seemed clear that Minor League teams would likely not be able to play this year. MLB teams can still make money while playing in empty stadiums, because a large portion of their revenue comes from TV. Minor League teams don’t have that source of income; they need fans buying tickets to have any real source of revenue, and at this time it doesn’t appear possible for them to...
Apr 30, 2020
Cub Tracks misses Yu

Cub Tracks misses Yu

Photo by Masterpress/ Cubs, simCubs, and MLB news and notes “I’m sorry...” said Brandon Palmer. “I thought that was gonna be one of those games that bites you on the ass, but in the end, it wasn’t. Nice at-bat by David Bote, who is clutch. One of the most clutch in the league. Just ask Matt Vasgersian.” The Cubs swept the Pirates, but I gotta tell you, for a team that’s 21-10, they worry me. Part of it is that they don’t play Pittsburgh again for months, and part of it is that they seem besieged by weird things like the barrage of dink hits that the Bucs...
Apr 29, 2020
Sara’s Diary, Day 48 without baseball: The food supply

Sara’s Diary, Day 48 without baseball: The food supply

Workers sell fruit at a farmer’s market in Brooklyn during the COVID-19 pandemic | Braulio Jatar / Echoes Wire/Barcroft Media via Millions are hungry as food is destroyed There are so many shocking images and developments as the COVID-19 pandemic progresses that it’s difficult to keep up with all of them. The public health and economic crises have fed off each other. Millions are out of work due to the shutdown and many of those workers have found themselves dependent on food banks to feed their families. Multiple ballparks have been transformed into food bank distribution centers,...
Apr 29, 2020
The Cubs are offering a 5 percent credit to season-ticket holders

The Cubs are offering a 5 percent credit to season-ticket holders

Photo by Jonathan Daniel/ ... but so far, only for games through the end of May. Last week, I wrote here about reports that the Cubs (and White Sox) were planning to offer 5 percent credits for season-ticket holders who were willing to leave their season-ticket money with the Cubs instead of taking refunds for unplayed games this year. Tuesday, it was reported that Major League Baseball had now given teams permission to offer such credits, or refunds. Previously, teams had deferred to MLB for any decisions on what to do with tickets. Today, Cubs season-ticket holders received an email...
Apr 29, 2020
Chicago Cubs vs. Pittsburgh Pirates simulated game, Wednesday 4/29, 3 p.m. CT

Chicago Cubs vs. Pittsburgh Pirates simulated game, Wednesday 4/29, 3 p.m. CT

The simCubs go for the sweep of the simPirates. The simCubs walked it off against the simPirates Wednesday, with Kyle Schwarber running through a stop sign at third base on a double by Ian Happ to score the winning run. Here are highlights: Here are the simCubs results and schedule for April: We have made a couple of roster moves. Jesus Luzardo is going to be sent back to Triple-A to join the rotation there, and Kyle Ryan is being recalled. We’ve also sent Jeremy Jeffress, who’s been pretty bad, to Iowa and called up Dillon Maples. I have always had an irrational like for Maples. Now...