At the first Cubs game I went to the season, the very first pitch wound up on Waveland Avenue. The Brewers won that game 8-2, and we Cubs fans figured that was a foretaste of the entire season.
Well, the Brewers lost last night, and the Cubs' magic number fell to 1 (against the Brewers). Except that yesterday, the Cubs hosted St. Louis, who got a grand slam in the 1st which pretty much set the stage for the game. Final scoreboard:
Let's look at that close-up:
Well, it's likely they'll clinch the division today. They can't possibly lose two in a row against St. Louis, can they?
'Nuff said. That it went to extra innings disturbs me only a little. I'll be at the game against St. Louis tomorrow afternoon, but I won't see them clinch; the earliest that can come is at the end of Milwaukee's game at Cincinnati tomorrow night.
Also, the 2009 schedules are up. The Cubs open in Houston on April 6th. No word yet on when tickets go on sale.
Update: The Trib has the story of today's game.
This evening the Cubs chose (B), against Milwaukee, so the magic number remains 4.
And the magic number drops by two. Though, I gotta say, the top of the 9th was nerve-wracking—but Wood pulled through, finishing the game with a strikeout.
Philadelphia has clinched the NL East, so now it's beween New York and Milwaukee for the wild card, assuming the Cubs don't choke.
Oh, and the Cubs win has eliminated St. Louis.
And this one, a one-hitter. Magic number now 6. Milwaukee and St. Louis will be in town this week—I'll be at Friday's game—so the Cubs could, theoretically, clinch by Thursday.
Monkeys could, theoretically, fly out of my butt, too; but the Cubs clinching the division this week is actually more likely.
Milwaukee lost the first game of their double header against Philadelphia this afternoon, so the Cubs' magic number is now 9.
Update, 21:00 CDT: The Brewers just lost 6-1. The Cubs' magic number falls to 8, with 16 games yet to play.
Later update, 21:15 CDT: The Cubs are right now schooling the Astros 5-0 in the top of the 9th at Miller Park. So despite the rain, today is turning out pretty well for the Cubs.
Final update, 21:30 CDT: Thanks to a 7-inning no hitter by Carlos Zambrano—the first Cubs no-hitter since 1972—the Cubs beat Houston 5-0, lowering their magic number to 7.
Yesterday Chicago broke its all-time one-day rainfall record of 165 mm (set 14 August 1987) with 168 mm recorded at O'Hare:
And it's still falling:
Here's the Tribune story:
After the rainiest day in recorded Chicago history, residents across the area faced more storms, closed roads and flooded basements Sunday as the remnants of Hurricane Ike were expected to arrive.
Saturday's rainfall, as measured at O'Hare International Airport, was at least 6.63 inches, breaking the city calendar-day record of 6.49 on Aug. 14, 1987. Records have been kept since 1871.
The storm, which was blamed for at least one death, also clogged dozens of roads and stranded motorists from Evanston to Schaumburg to Naperville. The Edens Expressway was closed for hours, and access to O'Hare blocked by both road and train.
An additional 2 to 4 inches of rain are forecast, compounding the damage to a waterlogged region where record flood levels are expected along the Des Plaines River. Prospect Heights officials declared a state of emergency, and Riverside residents were put on alert for possible evacuation as the river rose. Water also edged higher on the Chicago and Fox Rivers.
My just-bathed dog now smells like a clean, wet dog instead of just a clean dog. And it keeps coming down.
Stuff that makes you say "huh:"
The Cubs and Houston will play two of their postponed games at 7:05 p.m. Sunday and 1:05 p.m. Monday at Miller Park in Milwaukee, Major League Baseball announced late Saturday night.
The third postponed game will be played only if it affects the postseason situation, and not until the day after the end of the regular season. Brewers officials said they encourage fans heading to the games in Milwaukee to purchase tickets online and use the print at home feature to expedite the game experience.
Until Saturday afternoon, Houston Astros owner Drayton McLane had refused steadfastly to concede that rescheduling games in a hurricane-ravaged area was unfeasible, insisting the Astros deserved to keep their home-field advantage. The Cubs, meanwhile, continued to push for a switch to a neutral site, with Miller Park—aka "Wrigley North"—being their first choice.
Um...with the Brewers within spitting distance of the NLC pennant, I hardly consider Miller Park "neutral territory." But it is a good compromise. And, if I get my act together, I might go after all (once I figure out the Astros' rain-check policy).
Update: I may actually go to Milwaukee on Monday...
The Cubs' magic number remains 11 (with 15 games left), only because the Brewers were also rained out tonight.
I hope Ike doesn't hit Houston too hard tonight, and I think I'm joining all of Houston—Astros fans or not—wishing the storm had gone somewhere else.