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Vine Line Tid-bits, March 2005

Tuesday, March 15, 2005

This month's Vine Line came in the mail a while back. So, having had an opportunity to sit down and read it, it is time to extract the tid-bits.

The cover this month has a picture of Sammy Sosa in the shadows, holding a bat by his leg while looking down. Its a terrific picture, intended to convey the sense of Sosa as a Gladiator. The title reads

Farewell Sammy
After 13 seasons as a Cub,
Sammy Sosa is traded


I really like the cover, and I think its done tastefully, despite the circumstances of the trade. I believe its a fitting send-off, even if he was sent off for the sake of getting rid of him.

Inside the magazine...

The Roster Tracker on page 4 reflects some fairly significant changes, so here it is.

Signed (thru date)
C Michael Barrett 2007
C Henry Blanco 2006
RHP Joe Borowski 2005
OF Jeromy Burnitz 2005# (mutual option for '06)
RHP Ryan Dempster 2005
SS Nomar Garciaparra 2005
IF-OF Jerry Hairston Jr. 2005
RHP LaTroy Hawkins 2005^ (club option for '06)
OF Todd Hollandsworth 2005
1B Derrek Lee 2006
IF-OF Jose Macias 2005
RHP Greg Maddux 2005+ (contract for '06 vests after 187.1 IP)
OF Corey Patterson 2005
IF Neifi Perez 2005
RHP Mark Prior 2006
3B Aramis Ramirez 2005
LHP Mike Remlinger 2005
LHP Glendon Rusch 2005 (player option '06)
2B Todd Walker 2005 (mutual options for '06 vests based on PA)
RHP Kerry Wood 2006 (mutual option for '07)
RHP Carlos Zambrano 2005

0-3 Men
Ronnie Cedeno, Jason Dubois, Angel Guzman, Jon Koronka, Richard Lewis, Roberto Novoa, Renyel Pinto, Russ Rohlicek, Carlos Vazquez, Todd Wellemeyer, David Crouthers, Mike Fontenot, David Kelton, Jon Leicester, Sergio Mitre, Will Ohman, Steven Randolph, Geovany Soto, Michael Wuertz

Also on page 4, there is a smiling picture of Ryne Sandberg wearing a 'BELIEVE' bracelet. It is a blue rubberband bracelet in the tradition of the Lance Armstrong 'Livestrong' bracelet. The paragraph says the Cubs sold 50,000 of them at the Cubs convention, and another 50,000 (so far) afterwards. They are produced by Forever Collectibles out of New York. You can purchase them from Cubs.com, at Chicagoland Walgreens, and at Wrigley Field. Proceeds benefit Cubs Care.

On page 5, there is a short paragraph addressing the Cubs plans to retire Sandberg's #23. The Cubs announced they planned to retire his jersey at the Cubs convention in January. The date has been set for August 28. I also learned something new here, Sandberg wore #37 with the Phillies. "I forget what number he asked for," said longtime Cubs equipment manager Yosh Kawano, "but [No. 23] was the only one available. He wasn't one to make waves, so he took it."

Page 5 also mentions Cubs fan Bill Holden who is walking from Arizona to Chicago in order to raise money to fight Juvenile Diabetes. He was inspired by the film, "This Old Cub" about Ron Santo's fight against diabetes. I did some digging around and found this site which has links to donate to JDRF in Bill Holden's name, or buy "This Old Cub" the DVD.

The Letters to the Editor section has two interesting tid-bits this month. First, the Cubs did not start wearing uniform numbers until 1932. I'm interested to know how they told the players apart before '32? Also, I learned that "in his 1967 and '68 seasons, [Ken] Holtzman pitched for the Cubs on weekends and then reported to Fort Sam Houston in Texas during the week for National Guard duty.

On page 19, there is a list of Spring training instructors.
12 Shawon Dunston, "Spring Training Instructor"
20 Bobby Dernier, "Spring Training Instructor"
23 Ryne Sandberg, "Spring Training Instructor"
26 Billy Williams, "Special assistant to the president"
31 Fergie Jenkins, "Spring Training Instructor"
73 Lester Strode, "Minor League Pitching Coordinator"
75 Pat Listach, "Hitting Coach, Iowa (AAA)"
77 Dave Bialas, "Minor League Fielding Coordinator"
78 Vince Coleman, "Minor League roving outfield/baserunning instructor"
80 Julio Garcia, "Manager, Peoria"
81 Mike Quade, "Manager, Iowa (AAA)"
82 Rick Kranitz, "Pitching Coach, Iowa (AAA)"
83 Jeff Huson, "Minor League roving infield instructor"
85 Alan Dunn, "Pitching Coach, West Tenn (AA)"
87 Dave Keller, "Minor League roving hitting instructor"
90 Bob Didier, "Major League advance scout"
__ Greg Keuter, "Minor League medical coordinator"

This raises an interesting point for me: I have always been disappointed that Dusty Baker got to wear #12 because it was Shawon Dunston's number, and Shawon was one of my favorite Cubs. So, now both guys are in camp, and they are both wearing #12. Hmmm.

Corey Patterson Power Hitter: On page 39, we learn that Corey Patterson is the Cubs all-time March home run hitter! He has two from opening day 2003. Other Cubs to hit March dingers? Henry Rodriguez in 1998, Shane Andrews 2000, and Mark Grace 2000. Now thats company!

On page 41 there is an advertisement for Cubs seats. You can buy an actual authentic Cubs Box seat. Head on over to The Stadium Seat Store.

More Vine-Line Tid-bits Please!

Posted by Byron at March 15, 2005 6:25 PM | Bookmark and Share | BallHype: hype it up!
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