Get Confident, Stupid!

The title of this post is in reference to one of the "self-help" videos that Troy McClure appeared in. If you watch the Simpsons and don't know who Troy McClure is, then you weren't watching the show when it used to actually be funny (Honestly, why is this show still on the air? It hasn't been any good for about 6 years now). Anyway, I thought it was a great tagline for our situation right now. Its early May and I already see the doom and gloom written on some Cub fans' faces.

So as a guide to them, and as therapy for myself while the Cubs sludge through this losing streak, I offer, 4 reasons to stay optimistic about the current season. So without further ado, in no particular order, here we go.

1. Prior and Wood will be back before you know it. While Prior had a minor setback due to food poisoning (which led to a bevy of "better operate on his elbow then" jokes), him and Wood should be back in the rotation by the end of the month. Prior is aiming for the end of May while Wood is on track to get back in the rotation on May 17th versus Washington. Wood took the next big step last night when he mowed down the Lansing Lugnuts in a rehab start for Single-A Peoria. Once they return we will have a rotation of Zambrano, Prior, Maddux, Wood, and Marshall (I would hope he's the #5 when these guys come back). Oh and there's also Wade Miller on the horizon as well, who's slated for a return off the DL in mid-June.

2. Hey, these young hitters aren't that bad. Ronny Cedeno and Thunder Matt Murton both earned starting jobs in Spring Training, and they've shown no signs of relinquishing those spots any time soon. Cedeno has provided a consistent bat at shortstop. Currently Ronny is batting .317 which is tops among active Cubs starters (D-Lee has a .318 AVG). Thunder Matt is batting .289 and is second on the team to only Michael Barrett in RBI (17 RBI to Barret's 18).

3. Hey, these veteran hitters aren't THAT bad. .241, .240, .220. Those are the current batting averages of Jacque Jones, Juan Pierre, and Aramis Ramirez respectively. Are they below expectations? Yes. Will they stay that way? History would have it, probably not. Pierre is a .303 career hitter. A-Ram's career AVG in April, May, and June respectively are .250, .272, and .308. Jacque Jones.....well, um? Jacque's current AVG isn't much different than his 2005 AVG of .249, but he is only 3 years removed from a season where he hit over .300, that and if he doesn't pick it up, I think management can find someone to play RF.

4. Old Style beer is still being brewed and proudly served at Wrigley Field. For over a half-century, Old Style has been a Wrigley fixture. So if this streak doesn't snap soon and the above three reasons to stay positive don't help, you could always order up a cold one and drown your sorrows.

But hey, its early May! We've got 132 games to go. And despite the fact since I've been typing this, the Cubs have sunk into a 3-0 deficit through 3 innings against San Diego, I highly suggest to the doomsday fan, "Get confident, stupid!"

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