The Cubs‘ West Coast trip was disastrous, but at least it wasn’t completely humiliating. If they’d been swept by the Dodgers…that would’ve made it humiliating.
But, thankfully, the Cubs were able to avert the sweep, by hanging a 3-1 win on L.A. behind Ryan Dempster, Jake Fox and a dominating Carlos Marmol.
Fox got the offense cranked up, going 4-4 with a solo bomb in the 2nd off Chad Billingsley. Lou Piniella gave Alfonso Soriano and Milton Bradley the day off, and played Fox in left and Sam Fuld in right. The result? Victory.
The season is pretty much lost anyway, so I wouldn’t mind Lou giving Fox and Fuld more starts in the outfield. I personally don’t care if I ever see Soriano in a Cubs uniform again. And though Bradley has improved his standing slightly since his early season woes, I think I’d rather get a long look at Fuld, who has exactly the spark-plug quality this team so sorely needs.
It’s time to start assessing things for next season. Time for Lou to start weeding out the guys he can go to war with and the guys he can’t. Of course, then there’s the little problem of figuring out what to do with the guys you can’t go to war with who have contracts that are impossible to trade. Jim Hendry will have to make some tough decisions, assuming he’s still around.