Friday, April 1, 2011

Opening Day!

Let me be clear, I'm a cubs fan and by no means a writer. I don't have a particularly compelling point of view or have any access to special stats or quotes.

I do listen to most Cubs games on the radio and what I will do is update this blog with the happenings of the seventh-inning stretch and the singing that accompanies it under the auspices that what happens during that sacred moment will predict what happens in the innings surrounding it.

For opening day, the brass brought in Ron Santo's kids to lead the crowd in the now-famous Wrigley rendition. As most of you know, Ron was the Cubs radio announcer until he passed away this year.

The Cubs are unveiling a statue of him later this year so his kids were there to promote that a little and generally just talk about Ron in a nice gesture.

We got some good Ron Santo "take me out to the Ballgame" memories, including the time he sang loud and proud thinking the PA system was on but instead of gracing the sellout Wrigley crowd with his rendition, it was only the people in the booth that heard him.

Ron's co-announcer Pat Hughes - as he said he did each and every time Ron sang - assured Ron that it was his best one yet.

The actual anthem singing, though hyped in the pre-singing interview, was anything but, mirroring the start of the new Cubby season.

Santos daughter took over the mic in a loud and off-key way and ended the affair with the statement "Let's make it the year" or something to that effect. it was so non-committal, I half expected to hear a "maybe see if we can try to" before the "make".

After the stretch, the Cubs responded by getting a run at the bottom of the seventh but just like the anthem - came up a little short.

Dempster was going well until the 5th when he walked two and gave up a grand slam with two outs. The Cubs hit fairly well but didn't put the game away when they had the early opportunities. They didn't give up though this was the Pirates.