Quick, someone calm him with a Baby Ruth!
It's never a good day for the team when you hear the PA announcer say "Jose Contreras is the winning pitcher." But that's what happens when a) Kyle Kendrick, who is apparently not a NASCAR driver, pitches way better than he has been and b) the bullpen blows up like an M-80 in a middle school toilet and your 2/3/4/5/6 slots combine for one hit all game.
But to hell with such concerns, because last night was the inaugural Cubs Social Media night, a gathering of bloggers that sent Cubs beat writer Paul Sullivan into a fit of watching Mystic Pizza and eating Chunky Monkey right out of the carton. WAIW joined up with the esteemed Ivy Envy, League of Her Own, Bleacher Nation, and others for a pre-game panel featuring Robbie Gould, Carrie Muskat, and some random idiots on the street going "RobBIEEEEEEE, RobBIEEEEEEEEEEEEEE!" We then snacked on free Vienna Beef hot dogs. Or rather, I did. And then the four people around me who didn't want a dog gave me their coupons. I didn't get drunk on beer last night, but good lord was I overserved mechanically-separated meat. Needless to say, I think Social Media Night is an excellent idea going forward.
Thanks, Julie! And Corey! And those two people sitting next to me! I'll think of you when I start breathing heavy on the first flight of stairs.
The game even looked to be sliding our way after Soriano launched his second homer of the year into the left field bleachers. But of course I had forgotten the bullpen issues that have plagued our fair city like the blood rain of biblical Exodus. The 9th inning got uglier than a north Georgia dental exam. Newly-recalled Scott Maine gave up a double, hit Mike Fontenot, and walked Jimmy Rollins. And the nightmare was on. I'll pause here to recall a moment that happened in the social media section of the bleachers.
(Scott Maine exits)
Me: "Nice job, Neal Cotts!"
(Five seconds pass)
Drunk guy in Purdue jacket: "Hey, way to go, Neal Cotts!"
He didn't even have the courtesy to yell "RT" first.
After Michael Bowden relieved Camp, Jimmy Rollins and Ty Wigginton reached second and third on respective steals, and go-ahead HR hitter Carlos Ruiz was intentionally walked. Career AAA player Hector Luna promptly stepped up to the plate and sent Bowden to that special Bobby Howry place in Cubs fans hearts. What was a 2-1 lead, then a tight 3-2 late-inning game, became a 9-2 whomping.
By the end, I was in mostly empty bleachers, with the remaining Cubs fans lustily booing. I must confess, I almost got choked up. It was just like Cubs games when I was a kid.