I love you, Greg Maddux!!

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My title is only partly tongue-in-cheek. The baseball heroes that I grew up with, like Ryne Sandberg and Bruce Sutter, are getting their calls for the Hall, and so I'm in a more nostalgic mood these days when it comes to my Cubbies--this year's miserable team doesn't provide much competition, and the fog of memory hides the equally miserable records from those bygone years.

And so it was with sadness yesterday that I heard about the trade of Greg Maddux to the Dodgers for a guy who has potential but has demonstrated little other than utility status. Maddux and I are of an age, and so, even when he pitched for the dread ship 'Lanta, I followed his career with interest. And when we signed him 2 years ago, it was my fondest wish that he would end that career where he began it, with the Cubs.

In a game that offers plenty of appeal to the quicker-of-mind-than-feet, Maddux was/is the archetypal smart pitcher. Never overwhelming, he's nevertheless outlasted a lot more talented pitchers and a lot more gifted athletes than he is, and he's done it with pinpoint control and intelligence. More than perhaps any other player that I could name, Maddux is a guy who's maximized what talent he had, and he built a Hall of Fame career on skills and smarts.

I hope that Hendry has the brains and loyalty to sign him back after the season, whether as a 4 or 5 in the rotation or as a pitching coach. At the very very least, after publicly saying that his first priority was helping the Cubs (whether by throwing or going), Maddux deserves it.

That is all.

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This page contains a single entry by cgbrooke published on August 1, 2006 11:10 AM.

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