Results tagged ‘ Kerry Wood ’
Construction on Kerry Wood Cubs Field has apparently been stopped after contaminants were found in the soil at the site of the $5 million, 1,100-seat stadium, according to DNAinfo.com. Chicago Public Schools and the Chicago Park District, among the partners in the stadium, are preparing a site remediation plan to be filed with the Illinois Environmental Protection Agency, according to Alderman Ameya Pawar of the 47th Ward. The site is located behind Lane Tech College Prep High School in Chicago and part of Richard Clark Park. None of the specific contaminants found were named.
According to Lane Tech principal Christopher Dignam, the site is located on a former landfill. In 2007, the school replaced its football field and the soil was dug up at that time, and it was found to be contaminated. It took one year for that soil to be removed.
– Carrie Muskat
You can celebrate Harry Caray on Feb. 28 and win a trip to Las Vegas. The 15th annual worldwide toast to Harry Caray will take place Feb. 28 at 5:30 p.m. CT at Harry Caray’s Tavern on Navy Pier. Hall of Famer Ernie Banks will join Dutchie Caray, plus Cubs owner Tom Ricketts, musician Billy Corgan and other celebs to lead the toast. This year’s toast is to “The Year of the Fan.” At 6 p.m. CT, there will be a fireworks show over Lake Michigan, and guest will receive special hologram glasses to see fireworks that turn into thousands of Harry face images. If you can’t make it, you can join in the festivities by visiting Harry Caray restaurants Facebook page, or tweet your toast using #ToastToHarry.
Harry Caray’s will reward a Cubs fan with a trip to Spring Training in Las Vegas in March, which will include roundtrip airfare from Chicago, a four-day, three-night stay, two tickets to the Cubs’ games against the Rangers March 16-17, plus four hours of gambling with Kerry Wood. Go to the Harry Caray’s Facebook page for more info.
– Carrie Muskat
Jason McLeod, the Cubs director of player development and scouting, made a point of asking Kerry Wood and Mark Prior to speak to a dozen top prospects during the team’s first rookie development camp. Prior spoke Thursday, which was the final day of the week-long program.
“Who better to know and understand having all the hype, having all the pressure, being the young guy coming up and then performing in this environment?” McLeod said of the two Cubs pitchers who had to deal with plenty of highs and lows in their careers. “”Who better than those two guys? Those had to have been two of the most hyped Cubs prospects of the last 15 to 20 years.”
McLeod knew Prior from his brief time with the Padres. The pitcher didn’t hesitate when asked to talk to the kids.
“He was fired up about it and said, ‘I’d love to talk to those guys,’” McLeod said.
– Carrie Muskat
Cubs outfielder David DeJesus and his wife Kim will host “Strike a Pose” fundraiser Jan. 17 at the River East Arts Center at 7 p.m. CT when Cubs players and their wives will walk the runway in a variety of fashions from the 900 North Michigan Ave. shops. Among the participants are Kerry and Sarah Wood, Darwin and Lindsay Barney, Travis and Brittany Wood, Shawn Camp, Tony Campana, Starlin Castro, Steve Clevenger, Scott Feldman, Brett Jackson, Anthony Rizzo, James Russell, and Ian Stewart. Proceeds from the event will benefit the David DeJesus Family Foundation, which is donating money raised to ALS research. Tickets are $250 per person and $2,500 per table (includes four tickets with reserved seating and table service). Besides the fashion show, there will be cocktails and food from Chicago restaurants such as Chicago q, RPM Italian, Bull and Bear, Shaw’s Crabhouse, Glazed & Infused, Pastoral, and Wow Bao. There also will be a live auction and raffle.
– Carrie Muskat
Kerry Wood and his family are doing their part to help Chicago area kids stay warm. The Wood Family Foundation has partnered with Harry Caray’s Restaurants to support students in the Englewood and Lawndale areas. You can donate new hats, gloves and scaves at the restaurants drop off boxes until Jan. 18. On that day, Wood will host his Winter Warm-Up at Harry Caray’s Tavern Navy Pier. Last year’s event featured the Plain White Tee’s. Tickets are $150 and can be purchased at www.woodfamilyfoundation.org. You also can order Woody’s Winter Whiskey drink at Harry Caray’s tavern through Jan. 18, and 100 percent of the proceeds will go to the foundation.
– Carrie Muskat
Chicago Public League student athletes will soon be playing baseball and hosting state baseball playoffs at a new stadium, Kerry Wood Cubs Field. Groundbreaking was on Thursday at the site at Clark Park near Lane Tech High School on Addison Street about one mile from Wrigley Field. The Cubs, Chicago Cubs Charities, Wood Family Foundation, City of Chicago, Chicago Park District, Chicago Public Schools and Turner Construction all contributed to make the $5 million stadium project possible.
Once completed, Kerry Wood Cubs Field will be owned and operated by the Chicago Park District. The field, which will include seating for 1,100 spectators and fans, is expected to be used by Chicago public high schools citywide throughout the high school baseball season during and after school hours. The Park District also expects to use the field for recreational leagues and use by the general public.
Wood retired during the 2012 season. He and his wife Sarah formed the Wood Family Foundation in 2011 and now focus on the community and its children.
“It is an honor to be a part of this project that will help keep public school baseball teams local during playoff season,” Wood said. “We want this field to benefit student athletes in many ways for years to come.”
The project is a potential field of dreams for young baseball players. Cubs legend Phil Cavarretta played at Lane Tech before making his Wrigley Field debut September 25, 1934. The first baseman and outfielder was the National League’s Most Valuable Player and led the Cubs to their last World Series appearance in 1945.
Jason Berken inserted himself into the Cubs record books on Thursday. In the second inning, Berken struck out four — Ryan Hanigan reached on a wild pitch — and is the fifth pitcher in franchise history to do so. The list includes Jim Davis (May 27, 1956), Bill Bonham (July 31, 1974), Kerry Wood (Sept. 2, 2002) and Ryan Dempster (Oct. 4, 2009). That also ties a National League and Major League mark, shared by many.
“I didn’t realize it until I sat down in the dugout,” Berken said. “That’s cool, I guess. By no means am I going for strikeouts.”
He was effective with his sliders and able to get ahead in the count. That helped.
“I’m not going to try to get used to that,” he said of the strikeouts. “I’d much rather have early contact versus a strikeout.”
– Carrie Muskat
In late April, I went to Des Moines to watch Triple-A Iowa play. I was talking to one of the Cubs coaches, and the topic was Anthony Rizzo. The first baseman was getting rave reviews on his defensive work, on his pre-game routine, on his hitting. Was Rizzo ready for the big leagues? The coach said: “The only problem will be you.”
He didn’t mean me personally, but the media. The hype surrounding Rizzo’s potential call-up has been off the charts. I’m surprised no one has interviewed his grade school teacher in Ft. Lauderdale, although that story could be coming Sunday. When Rizzo was promoted to the Padres last June, he was batting .365 at Triple-A Tucson. He struggled in the big leagues, batting .143 in 35 games, and was sent back to the Minor Leagues. When he was recalled in September, he batted .133 in 14 games. GM Jed Hoyer blamed himself, saying Rizzo faced high expectations when promoted, and still needed time to develop.
Moving Bryan LaHair to the outfield for the White Sox series was a sign that Rizzo is close. When? Theo Epstein wants to make sure the timing is right.
“You have to look at what happened last year,” Epstein said. “[Rizzo] had great numbers and was rushed a little bit and came up and struggled so its important to put players in position to succeed, and always put your Major League club in position to succeed. … Those things you don’t want to rush into, there’s more to development than numbers.”
Dale Sveum has been checking Rizzo’s stats and video all year. The first baseman has lowered his hands, and gotten better results. On Friday, Rizzo missed hitting for the cycle by home run, going 3-for-5 with three RBIs. He’s batting .355 overall, including .384 with runners in scoring position. Against lefties, he’s batting .338 (25-for-74), and against right-handers, he’s batting .362 (63-for-174). He has 23 homers, 18 doubles and 62 RBIs. Wouldn’t those numbers look good in the Cubs lineup?
Rizzo is very polished, very poised for a 22-year-old (he turns 23 Aug. 8). He’s going to be the center of attention, and every at-bat, every strikeout, every hit will be dissected and discussed. Nothing can prepare him for that. He’s not the savior; he’s a very talented first baseman with a ton of potential who could be one of the building blocks for Theo Epstein’s foundation for sustained success.
That’s Kerry Wood in the center of the media scrum at his retirement announcement above. I remember the build up surrounding Wood when he was promoted in ’98. The expectations soared after his 20-strikeout game in his fifth Major League start. The only Cubs player I can recall being more hyped than Rizzo was Mark Prior. Rizzo already has his first Major League hit and home run, collecting those firsts with the Padres last year. If he gets off to a slow start, will fans and the media be patient? Ryne Sandberg did not get a hit in his first six games with the Cubs.
When the Cubs call the first baseman up, they want it to be for good. Here’s hoping the timing is right, and I’m not a problem.
– Carrie Muskat
Kerry Wood and his wife Sarah will host the Strike Zone Celebrity Bowling Tournament on June 27 from 7:30-10:30 p.m. CT at the 10pin Bowling Lounge in Chicago to benefit the Wood Family Foundation. There will be a silent auction this year, and it’s already up and running online. Check out the items at www.WoodFamilyFoundation.org — you have until 10:00pm CT on June 26 to submit a bid there. The auction will continue live at the event where online bidders will be represented by proxy. The auction will close at the end of the evening at the event, with online winners being contacted shortly thereafter.
Some of the items include:
* Cubs-themed golf cart signed by the team
* Autographed memorabilia, including a Derek Jeter Yankees jersey, Tony Esposito Blackhawks jersey, and numerous game-used Cubs items
* Fishing trip with Kerry
* Bowling with Theo Epstein
* Chance to throw out he first pitch at Wrigley Field
* Tickets to a taping of Saturday Night Live
* A private meet and greet with WWE Superstar CM Punk
The Wood Family Foundation was founded in June 2011 by Kerry and his wife. The foundation works to improve the lives of children in and around Chicago by raising funds and awareness for its children’s programs and other children’s charities they support. The WFF acts as an advocate for children in the Chicago community, inspiring others to join them in their mission of giving children the resources they need to succeed.
Individual tickets (standing room only) are $1,000 per person & $10,000 per sponsored lane (4 bowlers + 4 guests). Go to WoodFamilyFoundation.org for more information.
– Carrie Muskat
It’s June 1. What did we learn about the Cubs in May?
* They don’t have a closer. Carlos Marmol had the job, then lost it to rookie Rafael Dolis, who is now at Triple-A Iowa trying to find his command. James Russell, Shawn Camp and even Casey Coleman will take turns saving games as Dale Sveum goes with the best matchup.
* Bryan LaHair is not Babe Ruth. The first baseman hit .390 in April with five homers, eight doubles and 14 RBIs, then cooled off in May.
* Starlin Castro may not be a No. 3 hitter.
* They survived a 12-game losing streak, and won three in a row earlier than last year’s team did. Give credit to even keel Sveum and his staff.
* They need more catchers. Geovany Soto, Steve Clevenger, and Welington Castillo went on DL in a matter of days.
* Kerry Wood’s career ended perfectly with one last strikeout May 18, and he can now focus on 6-year-old son Justin’s Little League games.
April (23 games): .237 BA; .294 OBP; .339 slugging; .633 OPS; 9 homers, 75 RBIs
May (27 games): .259 BA; .320 OBP; .429 slugging; .748 OPS; 30 homers; 96 RBIs
April: 8-15; 4.21 ERA; 2-for-5 save opportunities
May: 10-17; 4.47 ERA; 5-for-10 save opportunities
Ryan Dempster: 0-2, 3.72 ERA, 6 starts
Matt Garza: 0-2, 6.86 ERA, 4 starts
Bryan LaHair: .253 BA; .343 OBP; .448 slugging; .792 OPS; 2 doubles, 5 HR, 8 RBIs
Darwin Barney .284 BA; .344 OBP; .489 slugging; .832 OPS; 2 HR, 10 doubles, 8 RBIs
Starlin Castro .304 BA; .311 OBP; .452 slugging; .763 OPS; 4 HR, 1 double, 18 RBIs
David DeJesus .317 BA; .400 OBP; .495 slugging; .895 OPS; 7 doubles, 4 triples, 1 HR, 8 RBIs
Alfonso Soriano, .290 BA; .353 OBP; .591 slugging; .944 OPS; 7 HRs, 7 doubles, 17 RBIs
Shawn Camp 2-1, 13 games, 1.35 ERA
Paul Maholm 2-1, 3.56 ERA, 5 starts
Jeff Samardzija 3-2, 2.48 ERA, 6 starts
– Carrie Muskat