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That old saw that parents should not be their kids' best friend?
Cubs win big tonight and there's Maddon out on the field high-fiving them all: "You are the greatest and most bestest and nicest bunch of guys every minute of every day I have ever seen! You are truly great and you are loved! Juice boxes for everyone!"
I think I'm gonna hurl.
The manager moles into the tunnel, talks about it in the press meet and goes on. These are spoiled rotten, overpaid, multimillionaires simply doing their jobs, except for those players who are striking out 34% of the time or styling every high popup. Spongebob pajamas? No fucking way! Attention deficit anyone? Do they need their minds occupied? Maybe.
Champagne at every turn? I believe MLB orders it, so they can sell hats. Notice those hats? "PLAYOFFS" it said on the forehead. Generic feel-good. Complete with space age goggles to avoid the sting.
Every team does it, I know. But do the Cubs need so much self esteem that they must manufacture it 48 hours later? And walk out onto the field to "thank the fans?" Self-adulation is more like it. Shouldn't they have been concerned that they lost three in a row and four of six?
Sadistic, vicious executioners, runs-wise, so nasty that the other teams wonder and fear what you are capable of. Coming into a game knowing you have a struggle on your hands. Make them loathe coming into the Cubs ballpark. THAT'S a winning team, a winning culture. NEVER, EVER tip your emotions, happiness or sadness. Winning says it all, says everything. Two words: "We won." You leave it at that.
1. From Marty Gangler:
Geez Tom, just yell at all those kids to get off your lawn.
Maddon's credo is "Don't let the pressure surpass the pleasure." Or something close to that. He never waivers on that. And it's clearly working. Maybe the Cubs should bring back Dusty "Play The Vets" Baker or Sweet "Where Are My Pants Again?" Piniella. You think this team would have responded like this with these great baseball minds at the helm?
Big Poppa Joe has played these guys like fiddles and has milked as much out of this team as possible this season. Getting mad about how a manager communicates effectively to his team is kind of like sitting on your front porch hoping for ball that the neighborhood kids are playing with goes on your property so you can take it away from them and spoil their fun. It's just being jerky. So drink your lemonade and enjoy the ride, or go inside and watch Matlock and leave the kids alone.
It's all such a saccharin railroad spike to the brain after every one of 95+ wins, with one-run or come-from-behind wins off the charts. I don't doubt Maddon's value, I'll just say the self-esteem movement has reached the majors, and it's not just the Cubs. If they do win the World Series, what will they have left in their Neverland tanks? Will they float like Tinkerbells in the LED glow of the video boards? Will they all be given a gem-encrusted 2015 We Made The One-Game Play-In ring? If you don't win it all, you ain't won nothin'.
Well, back in my day the Cubs were terrible and had nothing to celebrate. And we liked it!
The New Luvable Cubbies and flowing water on Mars. It's overwhelming!
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