Write Derek at drksmart @ gmail.com
Write Phil at phil.bencomo @ gmail.com
by alex ciepley
"His upside is just tremendous. He's still learning how to pitch and he's still learning how to control a couple of other pitches, but he has a dynamite moving fastball, which is the best pitch in baseball."
Dusty Baker, on Carlos Zambrano (Cubs.com - 4/20/04)
"It was mechanics. I wasn't falling off to the side today too much and my momentum was going to the plate." Kerry Wood, after pitching 7 shutout innings (Cubs.com - 4/24/04)
"He wanted to know if I was out of gas and I said, 'I'm never out of gas,' which isn't always the truth. When a manager gives you that pat on the back and lets you stay in when he's ready to take you out, it almost gives you a new life. I can't let him down for letting me stay in there to pitch." Matt Clement, after Baker almost took him out in a 4-1 victory (Cubs.com - 4/25/04)
Capulets vs. Montagues
"Frank got hurt and there was no 'Frank Thomas Watch.' Frank Thomas is way better than Prior, and he has done a lot more than Mark Prior. 'Prior Watch'? Wow. I mean, wow."
White Sox manager Ozzie Guillen (Chicago Sun-Times - 4/24/04)
"It's hard enough for me to manage one team than to comment on another one. I've got enough stuff here. As much as I like Ozzie, I can't worry about what he says either. I find it strange that we don't say much about them, but they say things about us."
Baker, on Guillen (Cubs.com - 4/24/04)
"You hear from everybody, 'Don't rush it, don't rush it.' The biggest thing has been no setbacks. I'll take it one bullpen, one session at a time. ...I'm still shocked at how good it feels." Ryan Dempster (Cubs.com - 4/19/04)
"He took the boot off. That's a plus. We just kind of have to have a governor on him because he wants to be back like yesterday."
Baker, on Mark Grudzielanek (Cubs.com - 4/20/04)
"Here right now I feel pretty good. The first few times out obviously everything was aching from just not doing it in awhile. Now I feel a little bit more like I normally do after I throw my normal sides, and hopefully everything is all right."
Mark Prior (Cubs.com - 4/21/04)
New Defensive Metrics
"I always take pride in how I play defense. Last year I made a lot of errors, but if you play every day you're going to make errors." Aramis Ramirez (Cubs.com - 4/20/04)
"Some guys are great defensive catchers, some are great offensively and some, like [Mike] Piazza are a combination of both."
Cubs GM Jim Hendry, on Michael Barrett (Chicago Tribune - 4/23/04)
Media How-To 101
"It's only 14 games and we've been playing good baseball. When you play good baseball it doesn't matter what you do, you have to feel good about yourself because you go out there and give 100% everyday, and sometimes you're going to win and sometimes you're going to lose, and you've got to deal with that." Sammy Sosa (Cubs.com - 4/22/04)
"Is it true teammates have nicknamed you Mr. Bitterman?"
LaTroy Hawkins, posing as a beat reporter, to Mark Prior (Chicago Tribune - 4/21/04)
"I'm just trying to relax and be with the bullpen guys, who are kind of off in their own little world usually."
Prior, responding (Chicago Tribune - 4/21/04)
"I don't know anything about tipping, but if I did I still wouldn't tell you."
Baker, on whether or not Pirate Ryan Vogelsong was tipping his pitches (Cubs.com - 4/21/04)
"I definitely wouldn't have that in the clubhouse of the team that they beat"
Wood, after Derrek Lee and Todd Hollandsworth received their WS rings (Cubs.com - 4/25/04)
"Hopefully 299 to go." Sergio Mitre, after notching his first win (Cubs.com - 4/23/04)