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Chicago, Chicago, I’ll show you around

October 2, 2010

Dear Adrian Gonzalez:

Smooth move, buddy! That three-run homer you crushed off Matt Cain tonight (in the mustest-win of must-win games) may just hold off the angry mob that’s been forming among the Friar faithful.

When the latest Padre power outage began (actually it was more of a complete blackout), no one blamed you specifically, because you didn’t hit any less or suck any more than the other guys around you. But when you started missing throws and Bucknering ground balls, we couldn’t help wondering where your brain was. And then, right there in Tuesday morning’s Sun-Times, you served up the answer.


Oh, Adrian. I’m not going to try to talk you out of your enthusiasm for the Cubs, because that would be like trying to talk a kid out of thinking Santa Claus is real—if you’re naive enough to believe it, any attempt to set you straight would just be cruel. I do, however, want to offer you a crash course in media training:

1) Chatting happily about your interest in going to another team while your own team is gasping for breath is….well, it’s completely in keeping with everything the business of baseball has become, which is why you’re obligated to receive an extended tongue-lashing for it from pretty much everyone except Randy Jones, and he just likes being contrary. Stick to the script: You grew up idolizing [insert famous Padre here] and God willing you’re going to die a Padre and right now all you want to do is take care of business with the great bunch of guys in the Padre dugout. Padres! Woo!

2) You may not have realized that Cub Nation’s century-old inferiority complex translates all too easily into a tendency to leap headlong at the merest whiff of approval. You say “There’s definitely some positives”; they turn it into a headline that reads “Padres’ Gonzalez Raves About Chicago.” You say “They definitely have some good pieces”; they write “MVP candidate Adrian Gonzalez is one year removed from free agency and admits eyeing the hand-in-glove fit he could be for a team starving for the kind of left-handed pop, attitude, clubhouse presence, relative youth and Gold Glove fielding he provides.” See? The North-Siders don’t know about playing it cool. They’re terrible at poker and they’d trade the Sears Tower, Lake Michigan, and Oprah for a ray of hope regarding the Cubs. Next time the Chicago media come to you looking for validation, just create a distraction (“I heard Rahm Emanuel has a wicked curveball and curses even more creatively than Zambrano! You should go check it out!”) and scamper away.

3) If you’re going to drag your wife into this, perhaps you could at least try to portray her as something other than a vapid materialist. “My wife loves Chicago, for the shopping”? Barf. (And hey, is there a sudden shortage of retail establishments in southern California? Now that’s a news story.)

4) If all else fails, stick to the cliches, dude….and the three-run home runs.

Yours truly,


One Comment leave one →
  1. Matt permalink
    October 2, 2010 8:27 am

    PERFECT! In regards to number 3, he’s pulled this before. When Gonzo was under team control around 2006/2007 and the Padres were just going to renew his contract, he went to xx1090 and basically said (I’m not kidding) that all he wanted was a little extra money to buy his wife a purse. I believe he was fighting for an extra $50,000. Must’ve been one heck of a purse!

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