Cubs

Let's reminisce with Ronnie's best moments

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Let's reminisce with Ronnie's best moments

Miss Ron Santo? Yeah, we do, too. A lot, actually.

On a day that came decades too late, the Cubs legend is being honored at the highest level with his election into the Hall of Fame. He's not here to celebrate, but his family can shed tears of happiness and joy at the announcement.

Cubs fans can do the same. Tom Hanks once said there's no crying in baseball, but we can all agree a year ago was one of the days that just made us want to tear up.

Any time we listened to a Cubs radio broadcast this past season, it just felt incomplete. All we heard was about the game. No talking about cake or flossing or sandwiches or a random "OHHH NOOO!!!" after a Cubs player makes an error.

So in the spirit of a fallen icon who touched many hearts throughout his 21 years in the radio booth and 14 years on the North Side as a player, I've found a video of some of Ron's greatest moments in the booth.

Check it out here and we'll all laugh and reminisce together.

Here's a great and more serious tribute to Ronnie from commenter nfalcone set to my favorite song of all time "Iris" by the Goo Goo Dolls.

Here's a funny one from commenter MattAndracki (yes, there is a relation) about Pat and Ron discussing Michael Barrett's unfortunate groin injury.

From commenter JeffBerta: "I'm so proud of 10 today! I wore my Ron Santo Jersey today, for good luck! Last year at this time was really hard on me, My Grandpa who taught me to be Cubs fan and taught me all about Ron Santo (His Favorite player) died toward the end of November, and then the news about Ronnie today, makes me smile today, and think of my Grandpa telling me stories about number 10!"

From commenter AndySteckling, who posted a fantastic video of classic Ron being Ron: "Relating to Matt, just the banter between Pat and Ron. How Pat was always so professional in calling the play but you could just tell (if not at the game and not listening to the fan reaction in the background) how great or terrible it was based on the moaning or groaning or even the persistent cheering from Ron. This video clip I think states it perfectly."

From commenter jjsmmf: "There was a time in Colorado when a praying mantis was in the booth, and Ron printed off the wikipedia page and was beside himself with laughter reading it to Pat Hughes. I can't say I'm a Cubs fan, but stuff like that -- and Ron saying he always wanted to meet someone who's name was a palindrome, like Ned Den -- made listening to Cubs games enjoyable."

From commenter TraciAnn: Ron made me love listening to the games on the radio. He always made it interesting and fun. I love how he was just such a big fan. When something good would happen he would react like any fan would. Same when something bad happened. You always knew how he felt, and he was easy to relate to. Missing him very much today, wish he could have seen this, but glad it has happened, he couldn't be more deserving.
If you have your own favorite video, story or picture of Ronnie, post them below in the comments section and I'll include them in the article here.

Cubs Talk Podcast: Takeaways from Cubs Convention and players primed for a 2018 breakout

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USA TODAY

Cubs Talk Podcast: Takeaways from Cubs Convention and players primed for a 2018 breakout

On the latest edition of the Cubs Talk Podcast, Kelly Crull, Tony Andracki, Jon Graff, Matt Buckman and Scott Changnon rattle off their main takeaways from the weekend’s Cubs Convention, including the funniest moments and how the players engaged with fans and each other throughout the three days at the Sheraton Grand Chicago.

Plus, which players — besides Kyle Schwarber — made the most of the offseason and are primed for a breakout in 2018? The crew gives its take, with options including Albert Almora Jr., Ian Happ and Jason Heyward.

Take a listen below:

Why Kyle Hendricks is excited to have Tyler Chatwood in the Cubs' starting rotation

Why Kyle Hendricks is excited to have Tyler Chatwood in the Cubs' starting rotation

Everyone wants to know when the Cubs are going to add another starting pitcher. Fewer folks want to talk about the one they've already signed this offseason.

Kyle Hendricks, though, is happy to talk about Tyler Chatwood.

Chatwood might not be a big name like Jake Arrieta, Yu Darvish or Alex Cobb, and the former Colorado Rockie wasn't brought on to fill the Arrieta-sized hole in the Cubs' rotation, instead projected to slide behind the current top three of Jon Lester, Hendricks and Jose Quintana.

But whether he's the fourth starter or the fifth starter — depending on what kind of starting pitcher the Cubs add to the roster before spring training — how Chatwood performs could go a long way in determining what kind of season it is for the Cubs.

Hendricks, talking Friday during the Cubs Convention at the Sheraton Grand Chicago, thinks Chatwood will thrive on the North Side.

"Chatwood, I think, is going to be really big for us," Hendricks said. "We grew up in the same area, so I played summer baseball with him senior year, and he wasn't even pitching then, he was a shortstop, great hitter. But he's just a baseball guy, baseball mind, and that's kind of what this team's about. It's a bunch of guys who love playing the game, love being together. I think he's going to fit in great, personality-wise.

"And the stuff he has, I know it's going to play really well. He's only had a couple starts at Wrigley, but he's obviously pitched well there. That's going to bode well for him in the future. And being able to pick guys' brains, like Lester and these older guys that have been around. I think they're going to help him like they've helped me."

Depending on how much they trust Hendricks' scouting eye, that might ease the concerns of Cubs fans nervous about the prospect of replacing Arrieta and John Lackey with Chatwood and Mike Montgomery in the starting rotation. Last season, Chatwood's 15 losses were the most in the National League, and he finished the season with a 4.69 ERA. But the numbers were dramatically different thanks to Coors Field being his home ballpark. In Denver, his ERA was 6.01. On the road, it was a far more respectable 3.49.

"It's not easy. I'll leave it at that, it's not easy," Chatwood said Friday of pitching in the Mile High City. "I enjoyed my time there, but I'm excited to be here."

As Hendricks mentioned, Chatwood's transition to Wrigley seems promising. Chatwood has started a pair of games on the North Side and fared really well, surrendering just one run with 11 strikeouts in his 13 innings of work.

The Cubs have made it to three straight NL Championship Series — and won that curse-smashing World Series championship in 2016 — thanks to elite starting pitching. Arrieta was the Cy Young winner in 2015. Lester and Hendricks were Cy Young finalists in 2016. And Quintana has extraordinary promise if he can replicate what he did on the South Side in a Cubs uniform. If Arrieta lands anywhere but the North Side by the time this slow-moving offseason finally wraps up, Chatwood will be leaned on to help keep the Cubs' starting staff among the most formidable in the game. If he does, then 2018 could end like 2016 did. And that's what Chatwood wants.

"Obviously it's a great organization and a great team that I want to be a part of. I want to be on a winning team, so it was a pretty easy decision," Chatwood said. "I want to win one of those and be a part of that parade they had two years ago. I'm excited and hoping we've got a chance to do that."