The unthinkable was the norm for the Cubs this weekend. Not only did Henry Blanco have three RBIs, but the team completed a winning road trip, defeated a left-handed pitcher, had three victories in a row, won a game on WGN, and saw Juan Pierre get two hits in a game. Veteran relief pitcher Bob Howry even managed his first career hit.
When asked to explain their recent success, manager Dusty Baker said things turned around when he confronted hitting coach Gene Clines about his 12-hour-a-day addiction to Sudokus.
“Gene’s not been able to teach our guys the finer points of hitting, what with all the time he’s spent on those damn Japanese logic puzzles,” said Baker. “I had to do something.”
Over the weekend, the North Siders tallied 33 hits and 19 runs. Michael Barrett hit his second grand-slam of the season, Juan Pierre notched an RBI, and Neifi Perez hit a home run.
Clines paused when asked why the Cubs’ bats suddenly livened up, but was finally able to provide an answer.
“Dusty really saved my job and my life when he threw away that puzzle book,” said Clines. “I’m me again.”
Clines added that he noticed the team doesn’t take many walks. He then asked Chicago Tribune Cubs writer Paul Sullivan when Neifi Perez became a switch hitter and what happened to Jason Dubois.
Number of the day: 2
Career victories remaining for Carlos Marmol, after he was outstanding in his first-ever big league start Sunday