Cool Threads

By Chris Rewers on Wednesday, May 4, 2011

The Los Angeles Dodgers are sporting replicas of the powder blue satin 1944 Brooklyn Dodgers alternate uniforms for all of their weekday afternoon home games this season.

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April 1, 2011: Aisle 233, Row 8, Seat 110

By Chris Rewers on Thursday, April 7, 2011

I turned 41 on April 1 and I can't think of a better birthday present than the one my wife, Denise, gave me this year - three tickets to this year's Opening Day game between the Cubs and Pittsburgh Pirates at Wrigley Field.

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Greatest Moments, No. 4: The Sandberg Game

By Chris Rewers on Sunday, March 13, 2011

The Cubs' season was at a crossroads when the St. Louis Cardinals visited Wrigley Field for a three-game series, June 22-24, 1984.

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Greatest Moments: No. 9, Scratching a 39-Year Itch

By Chris Rewers on Sunday, January 23, 2011

(Editor's Note: Twenty-second in a series recalling the 30 greatest moments in Cubs history.)

When a Jody Davis sacrifice fly in the ninth inning finished off a 5-4 victory over the Philadelphia Phillies at Wrigley Field on Aug. 1, 1984, the Cubs moved into first place to stay. But even by the time the North Siders had fattened their NL East lead to seven games over the second-place New York Mets in early September, I still was waiting for bad things to happen.

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1989: Boys of Zimmer Clinch

By Chris Rewers on Friday, October 8, 2010

The 2007 Cubs Convention at the Hilton Chicago featured a panel discussion of the 1989 NL East champion Cubs. The panel consisted of seven members of that team: Mike Bielecki, Doug Dascenzo, Mark Grace, Les Lancaster, Ryne Sandberg, Dwight Smith, and Jerome Walton. The quote that sticks with me from that discussion came from Grace.

"1989 was my favorite year in a Cubs uniform," said Grace, who that year as a 25-year-old led the team in RBI, played first base superbly, and went an incredible 11-for-17 with five extra-base hits in the North Siders' disappointing loss to the San Francisco Giants in the National League Championship Series.

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1984: A Memorable Night in Pittsburgh

By Chris Rewers on Wednesday, October 6, 2010

When a Jody Davis sacrifice fly in the ninth inning finished off a 5-4 victory over the Philadelphia Phillies at Wrigley Field on Aug. 1, 1984, the Cubs moved into first place to stay. But even by the time the North Siders had fattened their NL East lead to seven games over the second-place New York Mets in early September, I still was waiting for bad things to happen.

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Milner Rains on Rainey's Parade

By Chris Rewers on Thursday, August 26, 2010

"C'mon Chris, give it up!" has been the constant refrain of family members and friends in recent weeks.

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Memories of 8-8-88

By Chris Rewers on Sunday, August 8, 2010

The 1984 Cubs ushered in the "yuppie era" at Wrigley Field. Seemingly overnight, the ballpark transformed from a slowly decaying, outdated, quirky facility to a 40,000-seat singles bar, a tourist attraction, and a baseball shrine. Harry Caray went from being an old, washed-up White Sox announcer to the hip grandfatherly Cub Fan, Bud Man. The bars that surrounded the park changed from quaint family-owned dives with juke boxes to corporate-owned establishments with dee jays. In the old days, the surrounding rooftops were usually empty and only occasionally would someone be seen watching the game from an across-the-street perch. After Ryno, Jody, The Sarge, and The Penguin, the rooftops became Big Business.

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A Tip of the Cap to Dawson

By Chris Rewers on Thursday, July 22, 2010

Andre Dawson's Hall of Fame plaque will feature his likeness sporting a Montreal Expos cap, but the Hawk will always be fondly remembered by Cubs fans for the thrills he provided during his fabulous 1987 MVP season.

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Rynomite!

By Chris Rewers on Thursday, May 13, 2010

USA Today's Paul White writes about the recent phenomenon of minor leaguers who share an unusual first name with a Cubs Hall of Famer and the manager of the team's Triple-A Iowa affiliate.

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A Harwell Memory

By Chris Rewers on Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Ernie Harwell, the longtime voice of the Detroit Tigers, died Tuesday night at age 92 after a year-long bout with cancer.

My favorite Harwell memory came when he filled in for an ailing Harry Caray on a Cubs broadcast on April 13, 1987. It was a memorable call.

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More Ways For Tom Ricketts To Desecrate Wrigley Field

By Beachwood Reporter on Saturday, May 1, 2010

"I don't really like the Cubs - 1984 turned me into a White Sox fan and an eternal baseball pessimist," Drew Adamek writes on the Beachwood Reporter.

"I'll admit it outright: I am not a Cubs fan because I like winning once in awhile. I don't buy into the lovable losers bullshit; being a baseball fan is too expensive and time-consuming to embrace constant mediocrity.

"The Cubs are just too goddamned disappointing every year for me to invest any interest in them. One devastating childhood heartbreak is all a team gets out of me.

"But there is one thing that I like about the Cubs: Wrigley Field. The only thing about the Cubs worth a damn to me is their ballpark. I love all great ballparks: Camden, Wrigley, the old Milwaukee County Stadium. The experience of going to a baseball game in a real park - the sun, the beer, the hot dogs, the history - is as American and traditional as it gets.

"Wrigley is a baseball - and a Chicago - treasure and it therefore breaks my heart that it's going to be defiled and desecrated in such a crass, commercial way. I am talking, of course, about the proposed Toyota sign. If this act of commercial graffiti happens, it will be an unforgivable defacing of one of the only true baseball temples left.

"I fear exploiting and weakening the tactile experience of going to a game more than I fear physical, cosmetic changes. Common places - ballparks, museums, plazas - collectively mean something, and when we change those places, we change our identity. Our experiences and memories become different; we lose something about ourselves every time we sell out our sacred places.

"If our temples are simply marketing opportunities then what do we keep sacred? (Right, before we go on about baseball as a business, I am asking that we keep one or two places culturally pristine to preserve what is great about America.)

"But fuck it, if the floodgates to commercial desecration are open why not go all the way? I mean, if you paint over Mona Lisa's smile, you might as well turn the rest of the portrait into a CoverGirl ad, right? If we can't enjoy simple pleasures without commercial intrusion then why bother anymore?"

Here, then, are Drew Adamek's suggestions for ways to further desecrate Wrigley by leaving no marketing stone unturned:

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Fool Me Once, Shame On Soriano . . .

By Chris Rewers on Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Unlike some people around here, I have gone to great lengths to stick up for Alfonso Soriano, but as Harry Caray used to say, "The worm is starting to turn."

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Ricketts Not Rich Enough Yet

By Beachwood Reporter on Tuesday, April 20, 2010

"There are ads behind home plate, in the dugouts, on the green doors of the outfield walls and in arrow electronic bands in the upper deck," the Sun-Times notes. "The Chicago Board Options Exchange has its initials on the brick wall in front of premium seats along the third-base line."

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Top 10 Home Openers

By Chris Rewers on Monday, April 12, 2010

The Cubs will open their 135th home schedule and their 95th at Wrigley Field today.

It is just one of the 162 games on the team's schedule, but the home opener is special. It's one of the rare times that there is optimism in the air. It's a day when it's acceptable to ditch the office early or to cut a class.

Here's a look at the Cubs' 10 most exciting Wrigley Field openers:

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Sincerely, JCB

I founded Agony & Ivy about five years ago for two reasons. First...

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