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Midseason Mailbag

Answering your burning questions.

Dear Cub Factor: Will a new Jumbotron help the Cubs win?

No more than a new Jumbo Dog with Jumbo Coke and Jumbo Fries. It may generate Jumbo Dollars but those will go right into the Jumbo Pockets of the Ricketts' family, who are Jumbo Jagoffs.

Dear Cub Factor: Why so sour? Isn't the farm system loaded with talent now?

Not as much talent as the St. Louis Cardinals' farm system - and they didn't have to put a century of utter futility to do build it. It's not as if other teams aren't also drafting hot prospects - or that the Cubs haven't played this game before.

Dear Cub Factor: I miss Marty Gangler. Why isn't he writing this column anymore?

Marty says he's too busy with his kids these days to keep up with the Cubs, but our review of surveillance tapes suggest three other possibilities:

A) Marty is rumored to have been spotted in the Far East making sure nobody hassles The Hoff

B) Marty is traipsing through the backyards of Tampa for a new documentary, Searching For Uncle Lou

C) Marty is on Zambrano meltdown duty for the Leigh Valley Iron Pigs

Dear Cub Factor: Will Starlin Castro eventually be moved to another position?

No, but he'll be leading off for the defending world champion St. Louis Cardinals in the 2016 World Series.

Dear Cub Factor: Is Alfonso Soriano Hall of Fame material?

Sure. He's got plenty of time to catch Herman Long.


Week in Review: The Cubs went 4-3 for the week but the Cardinals made them seem silly, even if they only gained a split in that series. Worse, the Cubs failed to trade Kevin Gregg at his highest value and Matt Garza will stub his toe any day now and go out for the season. Get moving, Theo.

Week in Preview: The Cubs send Travis Wood to the All-Star Game; the rest of the team gets a four-day rest before traveling to Colorado later in the week for the start of a West Coast Circus Trip. They will be appreciably worse upon return, thanks to The Plan.

The Second Basemen Report: Darwin Barney ended the first half of the season with a slash line of .222/.272/.344 and ranks 42nd in WAR. His great glove? Ranks 21st in DWAR.

Wishing Upon A Starlin: Orel Hershiser said on ESPN's broadcast of the Cubs-Cardinals game Sunday night that Darwin Barney is the infield captain who calls all the plays because Starlin Castro is just too "immature" to do it now - though Cubs management hopes he can do it in the future. We here at The Cub Factor are starting to believe more and more that Javy Baez will be the one doing it in the future. Castro's contract? Only lasts until just about the the time the Cubs will be ready to compete.

The Legend of Dioner Navarro: We will miss him. He's the only fun guy on this team.

Deserted Cubs: The Cubs have four in Arizona next week and here's hoping Bob Brenly gets to call Tony Campana with a walk-off steal of home.

Bullpen Bullshit: Last week we wrote: "Kevin Gregg blew a save on Sunday so the Cubs have already failed to trade him at his highest value."

This week, guess what?

Ameritrade Stock Pick of the Week: Shares of the St. Louis Cardinals continue to trade higher - and will for the foreseeable future.

Sveum's Shadow: Dale Sveum's Five O'Clock Shadow receded to 9 p.m. because he knows his job at the factory is safe at least until they finish modernizing the plant.

Shark Tank: Jeff Samardzija, who just gave up nine runs on nine hits including four home runs in 4 2/3 innings, hopes the Cubs find more consistency. And less irony.

Jumbotron Preview: 5,700 square feet of pretending to compromise on 300 square feet.

Kubs Kalender: Wait 'til next year 2015 2016 2017.

Over/Under: Hours until Matt Garza gets injured before traded: 3.

Beachwood Sabermetrics: A complex algorithm performed by The Cub Factor staff using all historical data made available by Major League Baseball has determined that the Cubs still do not have a core.

The Cub Factor: Unlike Alfonso Soriano, you can catch 'em all!

The White Sox Report: Know the enemy.


The Cub Factor welcomes your comments.


1. From Marty Gangler:

C'mon Rhodes, I'm actually trying to find as much information as I can on former Cub All-Star Bryan LaHair. He plays for the Softbank Hawks - where they release the condoms when they win!

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