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Write Phil at phil.bencomo @ gmail.com
by alex ciepley
I've been waylaid with the flu for the past week, which should've given me the chance to catch up on my pile of DVDs that have been lent to me. Classic movies like Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf and Lolita, neither of which I've seen before. I actually got through half of Woolf, but had to delay the end--it's pretty hard to watch a heavy-duty flic like that when you're hot and bothered with a fever.
So instead of flipping through my A-list of must-watch movies, I rented Dawn of the Dead on demand. It turned out to be an inspired choice, as I immediately identified with the horrifying undead monster people that surround the movie's protagonists. I, with my flu, was an undead monster person!
I'm back among the living, but I'm still out of it, not having caught any of the Cubs news from the past weeks other than Sandberg's happy Hall selection. Research says, though, that I haven't missed much. An offer to Carlos Beltran? Seems like a last-minute token bit to me.
The pisser in all this is that last night, as I was sitting down to do some lookups on leadoff men through the past 20 years of Cubs teams (as a followup to the Ruz-Hawk exchange), the processor in my baby--the Dell portable PC I use at home--went kaput. What good is a return from the flu if I don't have my 'puter toys to play with? I'll spend the next 10 days or so checking in when I can from wherever I can, while my poor Dell gets its new chip at the factory.
We should know Beltran's fate by tomorrow (I still say Astros have him), but we'll have to wait 'til next year to know for sure if the Cubs made the right choice between Todd Walker and Mark Grudzielanek (I think they did). With Grudz signing an extremely affordable $1M (plus incentives) contract with the Cardinals, there should be plenty of chances to see the two second baggers square off head to head during the season.