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The present and future of Chicago baseball

By Kyle Young
On May 4, 2009

Overall, Chicago 2009 Baseball...We'll Get Back To It

CHICAGO- The North and South sides have ridden an extremely rough ride. Both teams' seasons are hard to explain; equally their beleaguered records are near identical. The Cubs have been slow to repair themselves and one can't help but think of a ship without a captain steaming through a river bumping off of the sides. Meanwhile, feats in individual careers and the ascension of fresh talent just might bring the S.S. Sox to dock herself in Glory's Port as she did during the 2005 season.

The Cubs started out unstable; with winning and losing in pattern order. It took five games before their first back-to-back wins against Milwaukee. They then lost back-to-back before they won in the same fashion. Their last game hosting St. Louis was rained out and they went on to face Cincinnati, against whom they were 1-2 for that series. When St. Louis returned the favor of hosting, they again took the same record and lost their first two games. Same story against hosts Arizona, only this time the win was in the middle. The Sox record isn't solid either, but they have fared better. The Sox suffered three rainouts and a barely decent 5-4 road trip. Prior to their tour, the longest so far of the season, they were 3-3 and after a dismal homecoming series against Toronto and immediately receiving their worst game so far of the season, they came back to take a 2-1 series against Seattle. Also, in the spirit of history making, the Sox made many breakthroughs this season; most known of these are right fielder Jermaine Dye and first basemen Paul Konerko hitting career 300 home runs in succession against Detroit.

Cubs: Living Through

"I don't think anybody is in a panic mode," Cubs general manager Jim Hendry told Chicagocubs.com, "but I don't think anybody is feeling good about the way we've played or swung the bat."

Hendry maybe speaking truth, but there must be a few people at Wrigley nervous about how bleak the season looks.

Questions to weather the DeRosa and Marquis trades, along with the Bradley contract, have begun to erode Hendry's stance. Many argue he's throwing franchise dollars away at team deficiencies.

And there is outrage that Luis Vizcaino was dropped just as soon as he was making progress, despite the fact that without Vizcaino, the franchise now saves $5 million on the return from Marquis.

Out of the office and onto the field.

The Cubs are 12 in both hitting and pitching, 10 in defense in League place; which was proved reason enough to keep Aramis Ramirez off the disabled list. A choice of an alternate, however, if Ramirez should be on the DL is Bobby Scales. Scales, 31, is in his eleventh year in the Minor Leagues and hasn't appeared in a Major League game yet, notwithstanding shocking talent. Sox Ease And Observe

The Sox rested after a successful 2-1 home series against Seattle. The team's roster changed four times during the rest. Brian Anderson is on the disabled list for fifteen days following an evaluation; Jayson Nix has been brought up from Triple-A Charlotte.

Designated hitter Jim Thome and second baseman Chris Getz after Thome's left heel and Getz's right-middle finger, both parts having been previously injured, past inspection during a midweek re-evaluation and are back in the lineup.

Tried-and-true closer Bobby Jenks is also said to be pitching a lot of innings so far this season. It is unfortunate people in Jenks' position get more attention for mistakes then they do for their successes.

"Obviously, being a closer, I guess it's the closest thing to being a starter as far as pitching goes," Jenks told Whitesox.com. "You get more of the spotlight out of the bullpen role. But you know, without a good bullpen in front of me, there is no closer. I can never say enough about my guys down there before me."

Two Sox prospects may be finally on their way to firm Chicago debut. Daniel Hudson, 22, now with Class A Kannapolis, and both Aaron Poreda,21, presently a Birmingham Baron should start looking for Chicago digs as the Sox look to strengthen the bullpen.

Poreda's uninspiring first debut in Chicago in March was washed away with his stunning domination in his first win against the Jacksonville Suns last month.

Hudson, who bested himself in a game against Lake County Captains, with 13 strike outs, was the Sox's fifth-round pick in the 2008 First-Year Player Draft out of Old Dominion University, Hudson went 5-4 with a 3.36 ERA and a Pioneer League-high 90 strikeouts with Great Falls in 2008.

"lighting up the night and" - avoid using extensive analogies (mostly avoid using analogies unless you are trying clarify something). It is a well-conceived analogy though. Remember your job as a journalist is to be as clear and frank to a broad audience, so analogies involving imagery only take away from your overall point. Make sure you stay as concise as possible. Eliminate extra words that slow down your story.

Don't use passive verb forms like "have suffered." Stay active and keep your reader's attention. Just say "suffered"

"a dismal homecoming series hosting Toronto." To say "hosting" here is redundant because you've already deemed the series a "homecoming series."

Drop the the on words like 30th

Don't say things about what people think in a news story...EVER. Even when people say something, they don't necessarily believe it.


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