Cubs

Cardinals bust out surprise on WS rings

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Cardinals bust out surprise on WS rings

You know that feeling when your ex shows up someplace you are with their new paramour exuding all the happiness in the world while you're flying solo? Or, if you don't know what that feels like, can you imagine?

That's just what the Cubs have had to endure this weekend with the Cardinals. Only the "ex" in this case is a World Series title.

Friday was the home opener in St. Louis and the organization promptly raised the World Series banner. Before Saturday's game, each member of the 2011 World Series team received their World Series rings.

The Cubs, meanwhile, are infamous for having not won a World Series since 1908. So, I guess, in that example I used, it'd be weird because the people would be like 100 years old. I dunno, just go with it. (Also, I'm going to use the phrase "World Series" as much as possible to rub in how much this sucks for the Cubs and their fans.)

But when the Cardinals received their World Series rings Saturday (including Cubs first base coach Dave McKay), there was a little surprise on it. In the form of the "Rally Squirrel" that brought the Cards luck during their classic postseason run (that resulted in a World Series championship, if you hadn't picked up on that yet).

The Cubs don't have such things as "Rally Squirrels" or any other good-luck charms to immortalize like that. All they have are black cats and curses and "Cubbie Occurences".

Sigh.

Summer of Sammy: Sosa's 31st homer in 1998

Summer of Sammy: Sosa's 31st homer in 1998

It's the 20th anniversary of the Summer of Sammy, when Sosa and Mark McGwire went toe-to-toe in one of the most exciting seasons in American sports history chasing after Roger Maris' home run record. All year, we're going to go homer-by-homer on Sosa's 66 longballs, with highlights and info about each. Enjoy.

Sosa's 18th homer of June and 31st of the season came off the Tigers in the Cubs' brief 2-game Interleague series in Detroit. 

Sosa connected in the first inning off Tigers starter Seth Greisinger, going back-to-back with Mickey Morandini. 

The Cubs wound up getting out to a 5-0 start in the game but still lost 7-6 on a Gabe Alvarez single in the bottom of the 11th.

The aforementioned Morandini homer was only the 3rd of the season for the Cubs second baseman. He finished with 8 homers on the year and 224 total bases on 172 hits in what was a very good offensive season. Yet it paled in comparison to Sosa, who had nearly 200 more total bases (416) and a slugging percentage nearly 200 points above Morandini's (.647 to .471), a testament to how truly incredible Sosa's season was.

Fun fact: Tony Clark was the Tigers' cleanup hitter that day. Clark is now the head of the MLB Players Union.

Fun fact No. 2: Paul Bako was the Detroit catcher in the game. He later became the Cubs backup catcher in 2003 and 2004, when he posted a .611 OPS in 119 games over the two years.

Mitch Trubisky jersey sales trending in right direction

Mitch Trubisky jersey sales trending in right direction

Positive press about the Chicago Bears' offseason is having a strong impact on the jersey sales for the team's highest-profile player, Mitch Trubisky.

According to Dick's Sporting Goods, Trubisky's No. 10 is the fifth-most popular jersey among offensive players over the last 30 days. He's No. 6 among all players, regardless of position.

The Bears' offseason has been full of superlatives since their aggressive approach to free agency. The signings of Allen Robinson, Trey Burton and Taylor Gabriel put the spotlight on Trubisky and the potentially surging passing game. The second-round selection of Anthony Miller and word of Kevin White's offseason emergence has turned positive momentum into higher-than-anticipated expectations for Trubisky this season.

For Chicago to have any chance at meeting those expectations, Trubisky, who's entering his first full season as a starter with a new head coach and offensive system, has to thrive. Fans must be confident that he will, considering the investment they're making in his jersey.

Trubisky ended his rookie season with four wins in 12 starts, throwing for 2,193 yards with seven touchdowns and seven interceptions. He completed 59.4 percent of his passes. He should have a much more productive season in 2018 with his new arsenal of skill players and an innovative coaching staff, led by coach Matt Nagy and offensive coordinator Mark Helfrich.