The Cubs have won four straight series and 11 of their last 14 games. On the other hand, Zambrano has quit on the team and Casey Coleman is on his way back to the majors. Never a dull moment with this team and quite frankly, we’re all in this together.
It’s fun to meet other Cubs fans and hear what they think of the season and why they root for the Cubs. In this interview series, I get to do just that. Today’s installment of Prosecard from Cubs Nation is with Chris Jelinek. A Cubs fan since the he was born, he like the rest of us, is still waiting to see the Cubs win it all. You both have so much in common, why not check it out?! Enjoy…Chris Jelinek and his Prosecard from Cubs Nation:
1. Name: Chris Jelinek
2. How long have you been a Cubs fan? Why do you root for the Cubs?: I have been a Cubs fan since the day I was born (17 years ago). I became a Cubs fan because my dad was and always had the game on. Whenever I came home from school, I would be watching or waiting for the Cubs games to come on. I had the Cubs starting lineup memorized when I was about 7 years old. Always have been and always will be a Cubs fan.
3. Have you ever seen the Cubs play on the road? What was that experience like? If not, which stadium would you want to see them play in on the road? What do you love about Wrigley? Yes, I have been to a Cubs game at the Great American Ballpark in Cincinnati and I just recently went to the Crosstown Classic at US Cellular Field. I love Wrigley Field but sometimes it’s cool to see a road game. Fortunately, both road games I went to the Cubs won. I really enjoyed the game at US cellular field because of the rivalry. Cubs won 6-2 so that made the experience a lot better and I got to have bragging rights for the night.
4. At the trade deadline, what moves do you want to see Hendry make? (interview took place before the trade deadline): Right now I would like to see Hendry possibly clear up some cap space to make a strong push for Pujols or Fielder. Personally, I really like Ramirez, but if possibly I would like to see Soriano and Fukudome get traded. But with Soriano’s contract that will obviously be a tough task. I think Hendry needs to find some good pitching prospects, which are almost ready for the big leagues. So basically, prepare a team that appeals to free agents.
5. What was your impression of the team based on the first half of the season? What are your expectations for the second half? I didn’t have really high expectations for the Cubs this year, but the first half was terrible. Unfortunately, there were a lot of injuries but that is no excuse. The first half was definitely one to forget, but I was impressed with Castro and Barney. For the second half I’m expecting a close to .500 team. I would like to see top prospect, Brett Jackson, get some playing time and big league experience.
6. You are the Cubs’ GM for a day. What is your first order of business? If I was the Cubs GM for the day, I would fire Mike Quade and try to hire a manager who has a good playoff record or just experience (Maybe Joe Torre or Joe Girardi). Then after that I would focus on making roster moves. But I believe an experienced manager is what the Cubs really need next year.
7. You are in charge of the Miller Lite ad in right field. Against NL Central opponents, what would you have the sign say?
Astros- “ Houston landed, we have no problem. Cubs will win a series”
Brewers- “Enjoy a victory drink as the Cubs finish the Brew”
Cardinals- “Come watch the Cubs sweep the Cardinals. It will be a like a “Holliday” in the city.
Pirates- “If the Cubs beat the Pirates it will be a safe sail to the division title”
Reds- “Come watch the Cubs keep on “Rolen” as they attempt to beat division rival Cincinnati Reds”
8. Which Cubs team since 2000 has been your favorite and why? My favorite Cubs team since 2000 would have to be the 2008 team. Even though they failed in the playoffs, it was a fun team to watch all year. I loved Mark Derosa and his love for the game and willingness to do whatever it took to win a ballgame. And I loved Rich Harden, so when the Cubs made a move for him I was really excited but unfortunately that club didn’t do anything in October.
9. Are there any former Cubs you kept an eye on and followed their career after they left the Cubs? Definitely. Sammy Sosa was my favorite player growing up, so when he went to Baltimore and Texas I always checked up on him and his HR count. And it may sound strange but I have kept an eye on Mark Prior. I always have wanted to see if he could come back. I also check up on D Lee and Ted Lilly.
10. You get to write the headline for the Tribune the day after the Cubs win the Series. Give a few examples of headlines you would run: First headline would be, “The Curse is Reversed! Cubs are World Series Champs!” Second would be, “The Drought is finally over, after 103 years the Cubs have won the pennant!” Third would be, “Do You Believe in Miracles? Yes! Cubs Win the World Series!” The fourth would be, “Cubs Fans, It’s not a dream, The Cubs have won the World Series!” And the last one would be, “Hey, Hey, Hey! Cubs have won the World Series!”
11. You need to choose a current Cubs player to do one of the following things: attend a bachelor’s party, babysit your kid, handle a business transaction, run the team next season. Who would you select for each and why? I would probably take Matt Garza to the bachelor party because he is always on the edge of the dugout, cheering for the team. So he would probably be a funny guy to have at a party. I would have Ryan Dempster babysit my kids because he is always good with fans at the ballpark and he would probably be a responsible guy to babysit kids. I would have Kerry Wood help with a business transaction because he seems to run a lot of charity events and he would probably be the best Cub to help run a business. And finally, I would have Marlon Byrd run the team. Very enthusiastic player who would be good with motivating players and helping them with mistakes. He has also been around the game for a while now so I would trust that he would have an idea of how the run a ball club.
12. You are selected to write an article about what it was like to be a Cubs fan in 2011. It will be placed in a time capsule and opened in 2111. What would you want to tell those baseball fans of the future? I would tell them our suffering has continued this year. It has been 103 years without a World Series but hopefully one will come soon. We have a young superstar coming up, Starlin Castro. Hopefully you think of Castro they way we think of Cubs great Ernie Banks. And most of all, hopefully the Cubs win multiple World Series titles before 2111.
13. How would you celebrate a Cubs World Series victory? My Celebration would start inside Wrigley Field because I would be at the game. I would stay at the ballpark celebrating with thousands of fans until the stadium closes. After that, I would party in Wrigleyville all night. I would get a hotel room for about a week and just stay and party in the city for days. I would get the parade and rally site at about 2 or 3 A.M to make sure I’m close to the stage. The parade would be key to the celebration because it will be the most insane thing Chicago has ever seen.
14. You have to make a choice. Either change the exterior of Wrigley incuding the marquee, or make changes to the scoreboard. One or the other. Which would you change? I would change the scoreboard. I love the scoreboard but I wish there was an opportunity for fans the see replays. I don’t’ want them to change the scoreboard but if came down between the two I would choose the scoreboard. Maybe they can sell the scoreboard and that can help pay Prince Fielder (joking).
Thank you to Chris for playing along and agreeing to be interviewed for this installment of Prosecard from Cubs Nation. If you are interested in being the next Cubs fan to be interviewed, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org or send me a DM on Twitter, @proseandivy and I’ll send you some questions! Go Cubs Go!