Ballpark Frank


Ballbug Tracks Baseball’s Happenings Real-time

Ballbug - Tracking the MLB buzz real-time!I am a pretty heavy blogger therefore I have been using a news aggregator called memeorandum for quite sometime, to stay connected with the top stories of the day. Memeorandum recenlty has grown to offer Ballbug, which tracks the latest baseball happenings. Check out this post on Somewhat Frank to find out more.



Cubs Should Snag Unhappy Soriano

Alfonso Soriano as a Texas Ranger.I think Phil Rogers has it right in his recent column, the Chicago Cubs should try and snag unhappy Alfonso Soriano from the Washington Nationals. Though Soriano is prone to the strike out, he also has speed and power at second base and would be another great addition to the top of the Chicago Cubs’ lineup. I say go for it Jim Hendry!



MLB ’06 The Show: Is Like You Are There

MLB '06 The Show - Playstation video game looks pretty sweet!MLB 2006: The Show, the latest baseball video game, has caught my attention with some humor and realistic graphics in two different TV commercial campaigns.

The first TV campaign mirrors that of a scene from the movie Bull Durham, giving tidbits to his teammates of what it is like in “The Show.” Clever and definitely laughable!

The second campaign shows all of the super graphics the game produces. Basically, the game looks almost like real life. It is pretty scary how well the graphical players mirror real Major League players. It is darn close to watching a MLB game on TV.

Baseball Simulator 1.000 - Quite possibly the best baseball video game ever!If I played video games, I would definitely give MLB ’06 The Show a try. It looks pretty sweet in comparison to my recollection of playing Baseball Simulator 1.000 back in 1989.



Prior Headed To The Doctor Again

Mark Prior deals a pitch...does that look healthy on his shoulder?

Mark Prior is going to get his shoulder checked out after he experienced shoulder soreness and it is becoming all too familar of a routine for the Chicago Cubs. If it isn’t headed for surgery it is having stiffness or soreness or something. Hopefully the Chicago Cubs other young arms can carry the weight if both Wood and Prior are missing in action again to start the season.



Cubs Best Off Season Move?

Is it Wade Miller Time in Chicago?The Chicago Cubs’ pitching staff has been plaqued with injuries the last couple of years. Though has shined and have not been 100 percent healthy. This off-season the Cubs signed who has also had arm surgery recently. I like this move by the Cubs, it gives them some possible insurance and starting pitching depth at a time when Kerry Wood needs more surgery (knee). Wade Miller is still recovering himself from arm surgery and may need to take “baby steps” to returning to form but I like the gamble the Cubs have taken by signing him. It could prove to be the best move they have made in the off season. We will have to wait and see.

, former player and manager and current Cubs broadcaster, has also had similar thoughts and has posted them here.

Do you think this was the Chicago Cubs best off-season move?



Does Clemens Dream Of Being A Texas Ranger?

Roger Clemens paid the complex a “nonchalant” visit today. Is the Rocket looking to play for a new team, the Texas Rangers? According to an ESPN.com report Clemens’ has family and friends in the area and was quoted as saying:

“We’ll see what happens. Whatever, I plan to be around Arlington a lot in the future.”

Now that quote could be taken out of context since Roger could just be planning to visit his friends and family “a lot in the future”. Though, the Rangers’ rotation which currently consists of Kevin Millwood, Adam Eaton, Vicente Padilla, Kameron Loe, and Juan Dominguez would be a lot better with Roger Clemens. Not to mention, I could see Roger ending his career as a Texas Ranger since it mimics the conclusion of Nolan Ryan’s career and just seems like the way to end a Hall of Fame career for a Texas born star.



WSJ Examines Baseball’s Increasing Season Ticket Prices

writer Russell Adams recently examined baseball’s season ticket holders and the price of loyalty these days in baseball. The article gave some interesting insight both the latest increases in baseball prices and also into some of the perks that Major League Baseball organizations are turning to. The image below was included in the WSJ article and depicts some of the most interesting points (click to see the full size image).

WSJ Baseball Season Ticket Chart

As a Chicago Cubs season ticket holder with the night and weekend package I have seen the price gradually climb the last four seasons while the team had one solid year and were sub par the rest of the time. Does this make any sense?



Wood Is Splintering and Should Be The Closer

Kerry Wood's body is aging and falling apart., Chicago Cubs pitcher, appears to be falling apart. Wood has been rehabbing his shoulder which was repaired during the off-season and now it appears has hit a roadblock. Kerry Wood now has a medial meniscus tear that is putting him back on the operating table. The Chicago Cubs organization is calling the surgery ‘minor’ however, I beg to differ.

Since May of last year a family member of mine has been recovering from not one but two similar knee surgeries. The first surgery did not go as well as planned therefore a second was needed to fix the exact same injury Kerry sustained. These surgeries were both said to be ‘minor’ and have proved differently. last season also had a slow recovery after knee surgery. Therefore, I would be surprised to see Wood back on the mound before the All-Star break. Once Wood can return to throwing he will still need to fully rehab his shoulder which was what shut him down last year. This is becoming all too routine for Kerry Wood, the organization and Cubs fans.

So what do you do with a pitcher that is so fragile to pitch without worrying about injury? I say you put him in the bullpen. Kerry Wood should be the Cubs bullpen closer. Kerry Wood’s body is crumbling and cannot sustain pitching 200 plus innings a season. It is time for the organization to finally admit it and stop clinging to dreams of “1998 Kerry Wood potential.”

I wish Kerry the best on his surgery and a quick recovery. Upon Kerry’s return, I hope the organization finally realizes that he is not the type of pitcher that can shoulder being a starting pitcher and the workhorse of the Cubs staff. If you are looking for a workhorse turn to . Once Kerry and the Cubs realize this, they will be better off.

For additional perspective on the Cub and the Kerry Wood knee situation check out these posts on Baseball Musings, MLB Trade Rumors and GoatRiders.org.



The Big Hurt Was Shafted By The White Sox

Frank Thomas as an Oakland A

Frank Thomas has reported to camp for the and he is admittedly hurt that his 17 year career was not extended with the Chicago White Sox. Though Thomas is aging and had injury problems I feel the Sox should have given him an opportunity to finish out his career with the Sox as a coach/player for the next couple of season. Thomas could play some first base, designated hitter and help coach the rest of the time similar to how Pete Rose did late in his career.

I am honestly not a huge Frank Thomas fan, due to my love for the northside team in Chicago, but I respect him as a player and there is a “right way” to treat loyal veterans like this Frank. The same is true in the business world. The way the White Sox handled the situation was a bad baseball and business move but I do not think this is out of character for the Sox. This is the same organization that pushed Carlton Fisk into retirement early and could not decide on their commitment to Harold Baines for years. In fact they may still know be sure on how they feel about Harold Baines. The Sox do not know how to treat franchise players late in their careers – that is the bottom line.



Did Johnny Damon Sell Out?
February 24, 2006, 10:34 pm
Filed under: 2006 Baseball Season, Ballpark Frank, baseball, Major League Baseball, MLB, Sports

Johnny Damon as a NY YankeeI saw clean shaven and in Yankee pinstripes last night on and it just did not look right. He was the . He was the leader of “the Idiots” that were World Champions. I was discussingBill Gates of Microsoft this very fact today at lunch and my friend Dave Ciaglo and I came up with this analogy to communicate the magnitude of Johnny Damon heading from the BoSox to the :

“It is like founder going to work for .”

Did Johnny Damon sell out?




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