Wednesday, June 6, 2007

Chicago Baseball: Neutral Ramblings

Alright I’m going to do my best to put an end to the whole Cubs/Sox argument. Let’s start with the Cub’s fan’s attacks on the White Sox. I know it’s funny to call the White Sox fans trashy, but in all seriousness, is it really fair to rip on people for being blue collar workers? So what if they have mullets? You have fat people that sit with their shirts off and shovel hot dogs down their face until they can’t move. Which is worse? I don’t really know. I think real problem here is a little bit of self-consciousness. Cubs fans were used to being the Chicago team and now you’re having a hard time adjusting to the fact that the White Sox actually won something.

Now White Sox fans seem to like to say that the Cubs suck. Well, this is pretty much true right now, but remember, you sucked for a long time too. They also like to say they don’t care about their team because they show up regardless of how bad they are. Would it be more admirable if they just didn’t come out to the ballpark for years at a time when the team wasn’t the most competitive? Mike, you say no one is impressed by the Cubs attendance? I bet the White Sox would like to have similar numbers. In the past 10 years the Cubs have had an average of 11,000 more fans per game! Even more embarrassing, after your team won the World Series, your attendance jumped by almost 8,000 per game (can you say bandwagon?) and yet you still had an average of 3,000 less fans per game than the Cubs who went 79-83 the previous year. White Sox management has to resort to promotions such as “Bring Your Dog Day”, “Elvis Day”, “Half Way to St. Patrick’s Day”, and yes, the infamous “Mullet Day”. All this to get people to get people to come to a relatively new ballpark that is much nicer than the decrepit Wrigley Field that you like to ridicule so often.

So here’s my advice:

White Sox fans: start going to the games. You should be thankful that you have management that understands that good teams are built around pitching, generally drafts well and realizes that overpaying for big name players doesn’t guarantee success. You claim to want to usurp the Cubs as Chicago’s team? The real test will be after you have a losing season or two.

Cubs fans: shut the hell up until you win something. Or better yet stop bitching about White Sox fans and start bitching to management. Year after year they pocket your money while usually failing to field a competitive team. (I know, I know, they spent money this year. How they spent it wrong is a whole different story.) Keep coming to the park, but try taking more of an active interest in your team. I know there are some really good, knowledgeable Cubs fans out there, but even the best of them spend their whole season talking up the team, only to start incessantly complaining after the first month of the season. Be realistic and demand better.

Very interested to hear comments.

(By the way, anything you want to say about the Red Sox, I've heard it before, so bring it.)


BigLots said...

I agree that the White Sox attendance in the years prior to the World Series were bad but that doesn't neccesarily mean that everyone who started going to games are bandwagon fans. Obviously, every team has bandwagon fans when they start to win, it happens to every team in every sport. Nothing new. However, I think that many of the new fans were always fans yet they just chose not to show their support to ownership. To be fair, the White Sox were hit harder then any other team in baseball by the strike. They actually had better attendance numbers then the Cubs in the three years prior to the strike. However, since Reinsdorf (the Sox owner) was one of the leading causes of the strike, on top of nearly moving the team to Florida in prior years, the fans got fed up with the ownership and stopped coming. No one wanted to support Reinsdorf. Time and wins eventually healed the wounds and people began coming back to the park. This year's attendance numbers are pretty good for a mediocre team with the worst hitting in baseball. It is my opinion that the Sox fanbase is back for good and you will no longer see the days of attendance being below 20,000.
However, I would rather the sox average 5,000 fans a game and win the world series again then sell out every game and never win shit.

Buzzsaw said...

I could respect this article if it weren't written by a Red Sox fan. Red Sox fans have been bitching about the Yankees for decades before having "won something" a few years ago. Also, at least the Cubs/White Sox are different (they have much different fan bases). The Red Sox had a gripe when they didn't spend that much money and complained about the Yankees "buying championships." The Red Sox no longer have a leg to stand on since they bought one of their own. It used to be like David v. Goliath, but now it's more like two millionares bitching about who's got the nicer mansion.

Logan said...


First I want to address you assertion that the Red Sox 'bought one of their own'. Let's examine that 2004 team's roster. They had exactly three high profile free agent signings (Manny, Schilling, and Foulke). You can't really count Damon because he was a pretty good bargain at 4/$31 million. Cabrera, Mientkiewicz, and Dave Roberts were trade deadline moves (two of three were acquired by trading a high profile player). Varitek and Lower came from a great trade (steal) with Seattle where the Red Sox gave up Heathcliff Slocumb. Pedro was also a steal in a trade with the Expos. Millar, Bellhorn, Pokey Reese, Mueller, Kaplar, Mirabelli, Wakefield, Timlin, Leskanic, and yes, even Ortiz, were all cheap signings that Theo or his predecessor took chances on. Youkilis and Trot were from the Red Sox farm system, and last but not least, Arroyo and Mike Myers were claimed off waivers.

Now I'm not saying the Red Sox didn't spend money. Their payroll was about $57 million less than the Yankees that year, but it was still the second highest in baseball. What I'm saying is that its not as if they went out and paid the most for the best player at every position. They did it by a combination of good scouting, luck, and some key big signings.

However, you are still correct, the Red Sox do spend a great deal of money, and they are getting closer to the Yankees in payroll. I would like to say two things about this though. One, I don't think there is anything wrong with that. They are trying to win, they have the money to spend, and they basically have to do it if they want to compete.

Two, even though they both spend a huge amount of money, I think how they spend it is what makes them different. It seems as though the Yankees have simply signed or traded for the best players available at the time, regardless of age, team chemistry, or any consideration of the future. I'm not saying this makes them better, just smarter.

As for the fans, any fan that bitched/bitches about the Yankees and their spending is an idiot. Any somewhat educated fan (I would like to consider myself one) should hope that the Yankees continue to spend money on aging free agents and deplete their farm system. Anyone who knows baseball would realize that their dynasty of the late nineties was not built with this strategy, it was built around a strong farm system.

So to sum up a post that was way too long: The Red Sox didn't buy a championship and any fan that complains about the Yankees spending is like Gary Sheffield, an ignorant prick.

About Health Blog said...

Now White Sox fans seem to like to say that the Cubs suck.