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Thread: Dempster thinks Cubs will end drought, take World Series

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  1. #1
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    Dempster thinks Cubs will end drought, take World Series

    http://sports.espn.go.com/mlb/news/story?id=3244658

    MESA, Ariz. -- Ryan Dempster plans to move from closer to starter for the Chicago Cubs this season. On the first day of spring training, he took on another role: prognosticator.

    "I think we are going to win the World Series. I really do," Dempster said.

    That's a bold prediction before the start of a season that marks the 100th anniversary of the Cubs' last World Series winner.

    "Funny when people make predictions or they say things and people are like, 'How could you say that?'" Dempster said Wednesday, as pitchers and catchers reported to camp.

    How?

    "Like you believe it, you really do," Dempster added. "Enough of all the ... you know the curse this, the curse that, the goat this, the black cat, the 100 years, whatever it is. We're a better team than we were last year, I truly believe. And last year we made it to the playoffs."

    The Cubs did make it to the postseason last season after a slow start, winning the NL Central before being swept in three games by the Arizona Diamondbacks in the first round.

    A year ago in spring training, it was Carlos Zambrano guaranteeing the Cubs would win the World Series.

    Dempster made no guarantees, but he's convinced the centurylong drought will end.

    "I wouldn't show up here and work as hard as I did and everybody work as hard as they did to not believe that," he added.

    Reminded that Zambrano's prediction fell short, Dempster didn't back down.

    "And we were close, maybe we need some more guys saying it," he said. "You see these teams and they come together, they battle together and they endure through everything and they start believing that they are that good."

    Manager Lou Piniella didn't seem fazed by Dempster's prediction before the season even gets under way. The Cubs added outfielder Kosuke Fukudome from Japan and veteran right-hander Jon Lieber in the offseason and have been trying to make a trade for Orioles' second baseman Brian Roberts.

    "I like our team. I really do," Piniella said as he got ready to start his second season in Chicago. "We know the players a lot better, the players know the staff a lot better and that's a big advantage for us. But at the same time, that's a bold prediction. We just got to get it done on the field."

    The 100-year wait between championships seems mind-boggling and it's a subject that will certainly follow the Cubs all season. Piniella plans to address it next week when the full squad gets together for the first time.

    "Don't put that pressure on you, you worry about this year's team," Piniella said he would tell his squad. "Don't think about 100 years, think about this year here. And that's all you can do. ... You can't do anymore than that."

    The Cubs haven't won the World Series since 1908 and their last appearance came in 1945 when -- legend has it -- local bar owner William Sianis put a hex on the team because his goat was barred from Game 4.

    In 1969, a sizable lead against the Mets disappeared late, and a black cat that ran across the field at Shea Stadium was assigned some of the blame.

    The Cubs were five outs away from winning the 2003 NLCS when they become unglued as Florida rallied to a victory in Game 6 remembered most for a fan's interference on a foul ball. The Marlins went on to win Game 7 and then the World Series.

    General manager Jim Hendry said he's certainly not dwelling on the drought. He's got enough to keep him busy. He'd like to make another move before the season starts if it's available.

    "I still have some bad thoughts when I wake up in the middle of the night early about the series in '03. You try to move forward," Hendry said.

    "Not one time in my five years have we ever set in my office ... and said, 'Oh gee, we haven't won this thing in 100 years.' It's tough enough to get through the yearly grind. I knew in '03 how special it would be if we had finished it off. I really don't dwell on the past, I really don't."

    Hendry said he feels for the team's long-suffering fans.

    "You'd like to do it one time for them at least," he said.

    Notes
    Piniella said the Cubs will probably settle on a closer about three-quarters of the way through spring training. Bob Howry, Carlos Marmol and Kerry Wood are the top candidates and there is an outside chance Dempster could move back. The only other real question marks: Who will play center field with Felix Pie and Sam Fuld in the running? Also, how the back of the rotation will round out with the arrival of Lieber and the switch of Dempster.

    Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press

  2. #2
    Rally Onion! Chip R's Avatar
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    Re: Dempster thinks Cubs will end drought, take World Series

    Oh those crazy Cubs. It's nice to have a dream.
    The Rally Onion wants 150 fans before Opening Day.

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    Member OnBaseMachine's Avatar
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    Re: Dempster thinks Cubs will end drought, take World Series

    Dempster has always been known as a funny guy - this just further proves that.

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    SERP Emeritus paintmered's Avatar
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    Re: Dempster thinks Cubs will end drought, take World Series

    No Ryan, it wasn't a black cat. It was a goat. Get your curses straight.
    What if this wasn't a rhetorical question?

    All models are wrong. Some of them are useful.

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    Big Red Machine RedsBaron's Avatar
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    Re: Dempster thinks Cubs will end drought, take World Series

    Quote Originally Posted by paintmered View Post
    No Ryan, it wasn't a black cat. It was a goat. Get your curses straight.
    Paint, while a goat is supposedly linked to one curse, there was also an incident in the 1969 season when a black cat wandered onto the field and walked in front of the Cubs dugout (I think that Ron Santo was in the on-deck circle). 1969 was of course the season the Cubs blew a huge lead and lost the NL East to the Mets.
    "Hey...Dad. Wanna Have A Catch?" Kevin Costner in "Field Of Dreams."

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    Ya can't teach speed... Triples's Avatar
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    Re: Dempster thinks Cubs will end drought, take World Series

    I don't see this as an obnoxious Chad Johnson/T.O./Floyd Merriweather kind of prediction but rather simply a guy saying he believes in his teammates. How misguided the statement might be is certainly open for debate but it wouldn't break my heart to see some of the Reds' veteran players come forth with similar confidendent talk about their teammates. Henry Ford once said, "if you believe you can or if you believe you can't you're right"
    Baseball, it is said, is only a game. True. And the Grand Canyon is only a hole in Arizona. Not all holes, or games, are created equal. ~George Will


  7. #7
    My clutch is broken RichRed's Avatar
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    Re: Dempster thinks Cubs will end drought, take World Series

    The Cubs are so cute - you just want to squeeze their chubby little cheeks. World Series. Seriously, that's freakin' adorable.
    "I can make all the stadiums rock."
    -Air Supply

  8. #8
    The Boss dougdirt's Avatar
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    Re: Dempster thinks Cubs will end drought, take World Series

    Good. I would really hope that players think they are going to win it all in the middle of February.

  9. #9
    Posting in Dynarama M2's Avatar
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    Re: Dempster thinks Cubs will end drought, take World Series

    Yep, all the Cubs need to do is upgrade their closer and they'll be fine.
    Baseball isn't a magic trick ... it doesn't get spoiled if you figure out how it works. - gonelong

    I'm witchcrafting everybody.

  10. #10
    GR8NESS WMR's Avatar
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    Re: Dempster thinks Cubs will end drought, take World Series

    Quote Originally Posted by M2 View Post
    Yep, all the Cubs need to do is upgrade their closer and they'll be fine.
    Bwahahahahaahahahahahahahah dat's funny

    you made me LOL

    Good ole Dumpster. He's the perfect personification of the lovable loser Cubby.

    gO sCruBZ!!!
    Quote Originally Posted by Scrap Irony View Post
    Calipari is not, nor has he ever been accused or "caught", cheating. He himself turned in one of his players (Camby) for dealing with an agent to get one Final Four overturned. The other is all on the NCAA and Rose. (IF Rose cheated.)
    "Cheering for Kentucky is like watching Star Wars and hoping Darth Vader chokes an ewok"


  11. #11
    One and a half men Patrick Bateman's Avatar
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    Re: Dempster thinks Cubs will end drought, take World Series

    Does anyone else think that moving Dempster back to the rotation is an enourmously poor idea?

  12. #12
    Start the Reactor! *BaseClogger*'s Avatar
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    Re: Dempster thinks Cubs will end drought, take World Series

    Quote Originally Posted by Austin Kearns View Post
    Does anyone else think that moving Dempster back to the rotation is an enourmously poor idea?
    Reminds one of Danny Graves doesn't it?
    "On-base percentage is great if you can score runs and do something with that on-base percentage," Baker said. "Clogging up the bases isn't that great to me."

  13. #13
    Start the Reactor! *BaseClogger*'s Avatar
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    Re: Dempster thinks Cubs will end drought, take World Series

    Quote Originally Posted by Austin Kearns View Post
    Does anyone else think that moving Dempster back to the rotation is an enourmously poor idea?








    Although I agreed with you at the time, the scouts knew what they were doing...
    "On-base percentage is great if you can score runs and do something with that on-base percentage," Baker said. "Clogging up the bases isn't that great to me."

  14. #14
    One and a half men Patrick Bateman's Avatar
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    Re: Dempster thinks Cubs will end drought, take World Series

    Quote Originally Posted by *BaseClogger* View Post








    Although I agreed with you at the time, the scouts knew what they were doing...
    Burn on me.

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    Re: Dempster thinks Cubs will end drought, take World Series

    Quote Originally Posted by Austin Kearns View Post
    Does anyone else think that moving Dempster back to the rotation is an enourmously poor idea?
    I think it's a great idea, and he will do very well as a starter.


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