The Electric Commentary

Thursday, May 10, 2007

The Chicago Sun Times reminds us of what we hate about Chicago

As you may have heard, the Brewers are kicking a lot of ass right now. We're even getting a lot of national press pointing out that we have the best record in baseball, that we're having the best start in franchise history, that we have a 7 game lead in the NLC, that the signing of free agent Jeff Suppan has improved a solid rotation to be one of the deepest in baseball, that the crew's own home-grown youngsters like Hardy, Fielder ant Weeks have led us to being among the best in the NL in hitting, home runs and basically everything else, etc. etc.

You may also have heard that there is this other team in the NLC that is 7 games back, in second place with, a .500 record. They're called the Cubs, and like the Brewers, they have had very little success in Baseball.

These two teams actually have a lot in common in that regard. But they are so so different in so so many ways. For starters, the Cubs are a large market team with a huge payroll. Every single guy on their team was acquired by free agency. They're like the Yankees except they suck. The Brewers play in a smaller market. The Chicago metro area is about 10 million people to Milwaukee's 1.5 million or so. Despite having at least 6 times the fan-base, they only sell a few thousand more seats per game. The Brewers have the 15th best attendance in baseball and play in the smallest market in baseball. The Cubs have the 7th best attendence and play in the third largest market. Brewer fans even came out in droves to watch the Indians play the Angels when The Jake was snowed in, just so the Indians would feel at home. The Cubs' payroll is over $100 million, to the Brewers' less than $70 million. The Brewers have built their team by developing young talent in addition to acquiring some solid free agents. Brewer fans drink lots of beer and eat lots of sausage in the parking lot before the game, then go inside and watch the game and cheer on our team. Cubs fans don't seem to know when they should be cheering. The number one thing people from out of town say about Milwaukeeans [besides making fun of our apetites] is that we are all really "nice." The number one thing people from other cities say about Cubs fans is that they're ass-holes.

But the biggest difference between the two teams is attitude. This article from one of the local rags in Chicago is the latest example of why the Cubs and their fans never win, and never deserve to. What's interesting about this article is that it is saying a lot of what I just said--e.g. that money isn't enough and that there is something to be said for building a team, but it does so in a back-handed way so typical of the Wrigley crowd. Some quotes:

And you might not know this, but the people in Milwaukee think they're in a rivalry with Chicago. How cute! But this division is lining up as a battle between the free-agent-buying, big-market Cubs and little Milwaukee, the burg where you stop along the way to get Christmas trees.

Actually, at the moment this division is lining up as one team running away from the pack. It's early and I'm not smug enough to say it'll look like that all season, but the Cubs are 7 games out of first, and only 2.5 out of last in the division. And nobody in Milwaukee thinks our city is a rival to Chicago in anything but beer consumption and baseball. Few cities are! Our alleged inferiority complex is a figment of Chicago's collective imagination.

''The Cubs are going to be hanging around us all year,'' Brewers reliever Derrick Turnbow said. ''They won't go away.''

Did you notice anything about what he said? The Brewers think they're going to be around all year.

This from a team that has finished behind the Crew the last two years. I'm not saying we've been good, but they've been worse. Where does this arrogance come from? I could understand if it was the New York Times and he was talking about the Yankees, but this guy is a Cubs supporter!

Despite his back-handedness, I like his conclusion:

''There's nothing wrong with assembling a team if you have the resources to do it financially,'' said Capuano, who's 5-0. ''You can buy a whole team, like the Diamondbacks did in '01.'' But Capuano said there's something to be said for camaraderie. And in the Brewers' case, many of these guys have ridden the bus together through the minors, learned the game together, learned how to be together... ...The Brewers still run the sausage race after the sixth inning. Bratwurst won Wednesday. Everyone still seems a little too nice, a little too white-picket-fence. And Yost can say, ''We're not here, there or anywhere. It's May.'' But little Milwaukee is going big-time.

I hope so.


  • chicago is an annoying place full of annoying people, but the cubs are actually pretty good (i hate to say).

    they've scored 163 runs and allowed 137-- they've just been pretty unlucky so far.

    By Blogger ahren, at 12:31 PM  

  • Yeah, their bats are all over the leaderboards in most offensive categories. They're good. If they can make it through their next 13 games (Mets, Whitesox, Padres, Dodgers) close to 500, and we can't (Philly, Twins, Padres, Dodgers), I'll be a little nervous about them. But however much talent they have, they're still the Cubs.

    By Blogger DannyNoonan, at 5:19 PM  

  • Milwaukee's other claim to fame: more church's per capita than any other city (with one exception: Las Vegas, witch is an exception unto itself)

    By Blogger Peter, at 8:15 PM  

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