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The Cubs finished fifth last season, and the White Sox finished third, but the moods of their respective fan bases don't mirror their showings in the standings

You don’t really meet a serious baseball fan, native to Chicago, who roots for both the White Sox and the Cubs.

This is the only two-team town in which I’ve resided, so I don’t know if there is a similar divergence in New York, Los Angeles, or the Bay Area. I have a Chicago friend who is a transplanted New Yorker—he loves the Mets but absolutely despises the Yankees and everything Derek Jeter stands for. (Winning?) My own mother lives in central Missouri and roots for both the Cardinals and Royals, which might not be quite the same thing but shows a certain generosity of spirit. Undoubtedly there are many in Chicago who root for both teams, who grew up in some neutral suburb or West side neighborhood and just like their baseball however they can get it. Those people, assuming they exist, are a decidedly silent minority.

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Fake-filling vacancies in Anaheim, Chicago, and Boston.

The first:

Angels Stadium
11:15 a.m.
On a Tuesday. 

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August 19, 2011 5:49 pm

Manufactured Runs: Multifold Changes


Colin Wyers

Jim Hendry is gone - will it make a difference for the Cubs?

It’s the end of an era for the Cubs. Tom Ricketts, public face of the Ricketts family trust that bought the team in 2009, announced this morning that general manager Jim Hendry had “stepped down,” which left out the little detail that he was given a bit of a shove first. It’s become increasingly clear that the Cubs have needed a new direction for many years, and now they certainly are going in a new direction.

Nobody will accuse Hendry of being the world’s greatest GM, but he is perhaps taking more than his fair share of the blame from Cubs fans. Ricketts was careful to avoid turning Hendry into a scapegoat, praising him for his work and dedication. Today’s press conference shed some new light on the baffling behavior of the Cubs this past month; Hendry was informed of the decision to move on back on the 22nd of July, just over a week before the trade deadline. He was asked to stay on to finish signing the team’s amateur draft picks, and he agreed. This explains the inactivity of a man nicknamed “Trader Jim” for his wheeling and dealing ways; taking a laissez faire approach gives his successor more freedom.

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Tom Ricketts is living it up on his first Opening Day as the Cubs' owner.

Tom Ricketts arrived at Wrigley Field at 6 a.m. this morning. He spent the next few hours posing for pictures and doing interviews. He was on CNBC's "The Call" explaining how the introduction of bison products is going to rally the Cubs to their first world title since the Teddy Roosevelt administration. Well, he didn't exactly put it like that, but he is confident that the denizens of Wrigley Field are going to love the buffalo burgers being served downstairs. I, myself, am very fond of buffalo burgers. I may get one after the game.

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