Results tagged ‘ Wrigley Field ’

9/25 Cubs 4, Pirates 2

The Pirates may be headed to the postseason but the Cubs were able to celebrate one more win at home Wednesday. Darnell McDonald hit a pair of doubles and a tiebreaking three-run homer to lift the Cubs to a 4-2 victory over the Pirates and close the home portion of their schedule on a positive note in front of 26,171 at Wrigley Field.

After the final out, the Cubs players and coaches tipped their caps and waved to the fans from in front of the dugout to say goodbye.

“It was a nice gesture,” Cubs manager Dale Sveum said. “It hasn’t been a good season, but it’s nice to see the fans come out and to win the last game was nice.”

The Cubs had not beaten Pirates starter Francisco Liriano in four previous meetings, but with the game tied at 1 in the sixth, Donnie Murphy singled and Junior Lake walked to set up McDonald’s first home run since April 30, 2012. Despite their struggles this season, the Cubs lead the National League in home runs on their home turf with 102. McDonald had doubled to lead off the fourth but was easily thrown out on a bad baserunning move as he tried to advance to third on Ryan Sweeney’s fielder’s choice.

“I definitely wanted to atone for that,” McDonald said.

The Cubs would like to make up for this season. They finished 31-50 at Wrigley Field, setting a franchise record for most losses at home in a season. There were some gaffes Wednesday as Pedro Alvarez reached third on shortstop Starlin Castro’s error in the Pirates fourth, but also some highs as Murphy ended the inning with a leaping catch of Clint Barmes’ liner, then stepped on third for the double play.

Cubs starter Jake Arrieta, acquired in July from the Orioles in the Scott Feldman deal, is vying for a spot in the 2014 rotation. The right-hander gave up one run on four hits over six innings, and was able to escape the messes.

“There are going to be jams in the course of the game,” Sveum said. “The difference between guys who have a good season and sustain innings is guys who get out of those jams.”

In nine starts with the Cubs, Arrieta held opponents to a .185 batting average, striking out 37 over 51 2/3 innings. He credited the change of scenery as well as the Cubs coaching staff, beginning at Triple-A Iowa with pitching coach Mike Mason, for the improvement.

“I just feel more confident and more prepared to put together quality starts and quality outings than I was in the past,” Arrieta said. “I think that will show dividends.”

Liriano had given up four runs over 29 innings in his four previous outings against the Cubs, and on Wednesday, was charged with four runs over five-plus innings.

“We just got some balls to fall,” McDonald said of the difference against the Pirates lefty. “Liriano’s tough. He almost no-hit us the last time out. Guys got some hits early, and when you get hits, it breeds confidence in the lineup. You can’t make many mistakes against good teams and good pitchers like that. Fortunately, we were able to overcome mistakes and get the win.”

The Pirates have secured a postseason berth, but they are still jockeying for position with the Cardinals and Reds, who were eliminated from winning the NL Central with a loss Wednesday to the Nationals. The Cubs find themselves still playing a minor role as they head to St. Louis for the final three games of the season.

“We still have three games left and obviously it’s not looking good for Cincinnati and Pittsburgh right now [to win the division], but hopefully we can help them out and win Friday and see what happens the next two days,” Sveum said.

They can definitely learn from watching the Pirates.

“We’re trying to get to where these teams are at that we’re playing down the stretch,” McDonald said. “We’re watching how they go about their business, how they play the game. It’s important for us as a young team. I think every one of us in here wants to finish the season strong.”

– Carrie Muskat

9/21 Wrigley Field logo

The Cubs kicked off the celebration of Wrigley Field’s 100th anniversary on Saturday with the unveiling of a logo designed by Brandon Ort of New Bremen, Ohio, whose design was picked from more than 1,200 entries. The logo will be featured as a patch on the team’s home uniforms next season and on a variety of items, including collectible memorabilia and commemorative baseballs. Examples of the stamped baseballs, jersey and patch will be on display at the Cubs Authentics kiosk in Wrigley Field’s main concourse, starting Saturday.

Ort’s design plus three other finalists in the “Wrigley Field Turns 100” logo contest were posted on for fans to cast their vote. Ort and guests attended Saturday’s game and were honored in a pre-game ceremony.

The design plays off the famous red marquee outside the ballpark’s main entrance at Clark and Addison streets, and has a dark green silouette of the light standards.

Fans eager to celebrate the ballpark’s birthday can purchase official Wrigley Field 100th merchandise in special sections of the ballpark gift shops and at “The Cubs Store” on Clark Street. More than 30 different apparel styles will feature the logo, including hats, T-shirts, polo shirts and sweatshirts, as well as novelty items such as key chains, glassware, pins and pennants.

Chicago Cubs Charities also has introduced a limited-edition Wrigley Field 100th anniversary Christopher Radko ornament. Each hand-painted, hand-blown glass ornament includes the production number of the ornament purchased in the series. Ornaments are available, starting Saturday, for $55 plus shipping and fees at, with proceeds benefitting Chicago Cubs Charities.

Throughout the 2014 season, the Cubs will celebrate 100 years of Wrigley Field with promotions, events and collectible memorabilia. Additional details will be revealed later this offseason, and attendees at the 2014 Cubs Convention, Jan. 17-19, will get a first look at many aspects of the celebration.

9/6 Dressed in style


The Wrigley Field grounds crew is dressed in Zubaz pants today.

(Thanks to Cubs for photo)

8/30 Sing along

Comedian and actor Jon Lovitz will lead the crowd at Wrigley Field in the seventh inning stretch on Friday. Here is the lineup for the Cubs’ series vs. the Phillies and vs. the Marlins:

Friday: Jon Lovitz, Actor & Comedian
Saturday: Gary “Sarge” Matthews
Sunday: Chicago Sky players Swin Cash, Sylvia Fowles & Courtney Vandersloot
Monday: Chicago Blackhawks player
Tuesday: Big Ten Network football analysts Dave Revsine, Gerry DiNardo & Howard Griffith
Wednesday: Hall of Famer Andre Dawson

8/10 A review of 8/8/88

I know this is a few days after the 25th anniversary date, but finally found the play by play (put together by SABR and Cubs historian Ed Hartig) from the first night game at Wrigley Field on 8/8/88 vs. the Phillies that was postponed by rain. Just posting to give you something to read before Cubs face Cardinals on Saturday night:

Top 1st:
Phil Bradley, HR to LF
Milt Thompson, groundout, 5-3
Juan Samuel, flyout, 8
Mike Schmidt, foul popup, 3

Bottom 1st:
Mitch Webster, single to CF
Ryne Sandberg, HR to LF
Mark Grace, lineout, 3
Andre Dawson, struck out swinging
Rafael Palmeiro, flyout, 8

Top 2nd:
Lance Parrish, groundout, 3 unassisted
Chris James, foul popup, 3
Ricky Jordan, single
Steve Jeltz, single, Jordan to third
Kevin Gross, popup, 6

Bottom 2nd:
Vance Law, foul popup, 3
Damon Berryhill, double to LF
Shawon Dunston, flyout, 8
Rick Sutcliffe, walk. During this AB, Berryhill advances on wild pitch
Webster, groundout, 3

Top 3rd:
Bradley, groundout, 5-3
Thompson, groundout, 5-3
Samuel, double to RF
Schmidt, groundout, 6-3

Bottom 3rd:
Sandberg, walk
Grace, sacrifice, 3 unassisted, Sandberg to second
Dawson, groundout, 5-3, Sandberg to third
Palmeiro, single to RF, Sandberg scored
Palmeiro caught stealing, 2-4

Top 4th:
Parrish called out on strikes
James, groundout, 1-4-3
Jordan, triple to RF
Jeltz, struck out swinging

Rain stopped play, and game called at 10:25 p.m. CT

– Carrie Muskat

8/8 First night game

Thursday marks the 25th anniversary of what was supposed to be the first night game at Wrigley Field on August 8, 1988. The game was ultimately postponed because of rain in the middle of the fourth inning with the Cubs leading the Phillies 3-1. The first official night contest took place the next night, a 6-4 Cubs win vs. the Mets. Did you go to the 8/8/88 game? Any favorite memories?

8/7 Home sweet home?

* The Cubs enter Wednesday’s game having played exactly 56 games at home and 56 games on the road. They are three games better on the road than at home, posting a 23-33 record at Wrigley Field and a 26-30 record away from home.

* The Cubs are hitting .254 in 56 home games, 23 points higher than their .231 average in 56 road games. They have a .756 OPS at home, 99 points higher than their .657 OPS on the road. Pitching-wise, the Cubs have a 4.22 ERA and a .730 OPS against at home compared to a 3.65 ERA and a .688 OPS against on the road.

* They’ve already collected 26 wins on the road, surpassing their 23 wins away from Wrigley all of last season. The Cubs are 26-30 through 56 road games compared to 16-40 through 56 road games last year (16-41 through 57).

* With 26 wins on the road and 23 at Wrigley Field, the Cubs are one of three teams to have more road wins than home wins this season.

7/28 Sing along

The Cubs return to Wrigley Field on Monday to play the Brewers. Here’s the lineup for seventh inning stretch singers:

Monday: journalist Bill Kurtis
Tuesday (day): Former Cub Rich Nye
Tuesday (night): WWE superstar CM Punk
Wednesday: Members of the Chicago Fire TV show
Thursday: actor and Chicago native Jim Belushi, whose daughter, Jami will sing the anthem
Friday: Actor Michael Shannon
Saturday: TBD
Sunday: Former Cubs catcher Jody Davis

7/24 City council approves Wrigley plan

The Chicago City Council approved the $500 million renovation of Wrigley Field on Wednesday. The plan includes a video scoreboard, improved facilities for the players, and a hotel across the street from the ballpark. The vote came one day after the council’s zoning committee signed off on the deal with the blessing of Alderman Tom Tunney.

The Cubs will install a 5,700-square foot electronic Jumbotron in left field, and have a see-through sign in right.

The team has wanted the renovations since the Ricketts family bought the Cubs in 2009. The Ricketts announced they would finance the plan in January at the Cubs Convention, but needed the advertising revenue from the video scoreboard to help pay for it.

7/13 Wrigley Field update

The unanimous approval by the Commission on Chicago Landmark last week of a video scoreboard in left field and new signage in right at Wrigley Field is just one step, and even if the Cubs get the go-ahead by other city commissions this year, they won’t be able to install the signage this season.

The Cubs made compromises since the matter was last discussed by the commission. Instead of a 6,000-square foot video scoreboard in left field, the Cubs say they will accept a 5,700-square foot scoreboard. Plus, instead of installing a 1,000-square foot see-through sign in right, the Cubs were willing to install a 650-square foot see-through sign.

Julian Green, vice president, communications and community affairs for the Cubs, said they still need approval from the Chicago Plan Commission, zoning committees and the full Chicago city council. Green said the Cubs have not selected a video scoreboard company. Plus, they want to be careful with what they install.

“We know the sensitivities of the new assets coming to the ballpark and people wondering how it’s going to fit into the character of the ballpark, and we know we have to get it right the first time,” Green said Saturday. “It’s going to live with us the next 100 years.”

The scoreboard also will need a full-time production staff, which has not been hired.

What about getting the signage up for next year?

“The amount of revenue that can be generated from an asset like a video board, we’re going to try to get it up as soon as possible and get it operating,” Green said.

– Carrie Muskat


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