Mariotti seems pissed


"Cash-cow Cubs a MacFailure on the field"

I pretty much agree.

So secure is MacPhail in his employment, he can get away with comments that insult the eternally tortured fans. This is what he said while defending his tenure: "In some ways, we have made significant progress. What I wanted to accomplish when I came here was to have an organization that could rely on a productive farm system and start to get a flow of talent. I keep a close eye on this, and we are among the top four teams in bringing talent to the big leagues over the last 11 years. Now, in my 11th season, we have had three Rookies of the Year and at least six All-Stars come up through our system. That's pretty good. We have had three or four attendance records. The things we have done to the park are going to help keep the park viable for the next generation of Cubs fans."

Pause here for a collective release of anger.

Don't bring up those trades

What is so incredibly wretched about those statements? First, MacPhail claims he and Hendry have overseen a productive farm system. In those 11 years, how many quality position players are starting for the Cubs today? Zero. Patterson is a bust, Hee Seop Choi was a myth, and of the three starting positions set for 2006, Lee, Aramis Ramirez and Michael Barrett were acquired only because cost-conscious franchises were dumping them. Maybe Pie and Murton will pan out, but I'll have to see it to believe it. As for Mark Prior and Kerry Wood, they were taken second and fourth in their respective drafts and weren't choices that required rocket science. As for the "three Rookies of the Year and at least six All-Stars" who have come up through the system? Embarrassingly, MacPhail is counting Dontrelle Willis, Jon Garland and Eric Hinske in that mix. I realize the Cubs were trying to win immediately when they were traded as prospects, but have some dignity, Andy.

Garland, a first-round draft pick, was traded to the White Sox for Matt Karchner. Hinske, a draftee, was traded to Beane's Athletics for Miguel Cairo. And Willis, a draftee, was traded to Florida in a package for Antonio Alfonseca and Matt Clement, who was allowed to sign with Boston last offseason. When you've given away three young stars and have squadoosh to show for it, don't remind Cubs fans that you drafted them. That just makes them sicker after the Lou Brock and Greg Maddux debacles.

Those last two paragraphs are hard to read. Well, OK, my stomach doesn't exactly turn at the thought of the "Lou Brock debacle," but maybe I'm just not old enough.

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This page contains a single entry by Papa-Lu published on August 24, 2005 8:26 AM.

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