this is my first weekend without any athletic events since August and I am taking advantage of it. Yesterday I slept in until around 11.Let me tell you, when you usually have to get up before 5, getting to sleep in is as good as gold.
After having a bite to eat, I watched the Cubs game. Thanks to the modern marvels of WiFi and Slingbox, I was able to watch the game out on our back deck. Now the Cubs have loads of problems. They are absolutely terrible. But there was something about the WGN broadcast that bugged me more than Angel Pagan stopping at second base when he should of had a stand-up triple to lead off the eighth inning. No, what bugged me more happened during the middle of the seventh inning.
Ever since Harry Caray passed away, the Cubs have started the tradition of having a guest conductor for the seventh inning stretch to sing Take me Out to the Ball Game. For the first year, it was kind of cool. A lot of sports celebrities and Chicago Celebrities stopped by Wrigley Field to lead the Cubs faithful in baseball’s national anthem. From Bill Murray to Mike Ditka to Chip Caray to Harry Kalas, it was kind of cool to see all of these people paying tribute to Harry. Then they would spend the bottom of the seventh inning chatting with the television announcer about the Cubs and their memories of Harry. Like I said, the first year it was cool
Then when the second season started, I was amazed to see that they were still doing the same thing. Only now they had to reach a little deeper in the bag for people with a little more of a questionable connection with Harry. And now half a decade later, they’re still doing it! Cub fans have had to suffer through the likes of Ozzy Osborne, American Idol contestants who have never seen a baseball game before, and Jeremy Piven who told them to “Hug one out” (a Joke that I finally get after devoting the last two weeks of my life to watching Entourage episodes)
Yesterday, they had Illinois football coach Ron Zook. When he stood up to sing my eyes almost popped out of my head. He had a script!! The man did not know the words to Take me Out to the Ball Game. This is not a tribute to Harry Caray, this is a travesty. Then when he was interviewed in the bottom half of the inning, he mentioned that he would like to play a football game in Wrigley Field someday like the old days.
I am sorry Mr. Zook, there is no way that you are going to bring your laughing stock of the Big Ten of a football team onto the hallowed grounds of Wrigley Field. Nobody wants to come watch your team lose by 5 touchdowns in a baseball park.
This practice of having a guest conductor at every home game has got to stop. Its just becoming too painful and insulting to Cubs fans.
Here is what I suggest. There was one Harry Caray. You will never replace him. but way not try to start a new tradition? I propose that they invite some Cub Legend to come back for every home game. During the game and walks around and greets the fans. Then during the seventh inning he comes up and sings. There is someone who would be willing to do this for the right price. They would be able to generate a lot of good will between the fans and the organization, something the Cubs desperately need right now. If you could not land a marquee name like Ernie Banks or Andre Dawson, you would at least be able to get a B lister like Bill Buckner or Les Lancaster. (or a C lister like Jerome Walton or Ronnie Woo-Woo).
Anything would be better than Ron Zook reading off the lyrics.