Discover more from Pointless Exercise
Still time to cram for the Bears opener
All your last minute reading and listening in one place. (Plus KB returns to Wrigley.)
It was a big week over here at Pointless Exercise (and Desipio) with enough NFL season preview content to make you puke!
First up, from Wednesday was a look at the Bears’ mind numbingly dumb decision to not start the one player we actually want to see play, a stat even sadder than going 70 years without a real quarterback and why national dopes who think Matt Nagy will get canned during the season don’t know our beloved Vags. This post has been unlocked just for you. (Well, for everybody, but especially for you.)
Then, on Thursday there was a free mega blowout on Desipio with every team’s over/unders and some season long props. It was a lot of fun. And did I mention it was free?
And then on Friday, back on Pointless Exercise, we kicked around storylines other than the quarterback (there are some) and I made picks for the weekend’s games that you will certainly want to fade. This one’s also been unlocked for your reading enjoyment.
By the way, as of this morning the only two games I’ve bet any of my massive fortune on are the two biggest spreads on the board, Niners -8.5 over the Lions and Rams -8 over the Bears. I just can’t see either team not getting skunked.
And, to celebrate the opening of another Bears season (and them wasting our time the first few weeks by not starting Justin Fields) treat yourself to a subscription at 20% off! That’s just $5.59 a month, or if you subscribe for a full year, just $4.67 a month. I mean, it’d be just as nice at twice that price!
After you read all of last week’s content you’ll be exhausted, so why not just listen to some stuff? Mike Pusateri and I kicked off another season of Bears podcast and did the hack radio things where we went through the schedule week by week and predicted wins and losses, and when we think Justin Fields will save our Sundays with his arrival in the starting lineup. But we kicked around a bunch of fun stuff, so you should check that out.
And, because the Bears are playing the Rams and we already did an hour on the history of Bears-Rams last year, I reworked that podcast. It’s worth a listen for the stuff we found out about the history of the Fearsome Foursome (frauds!), a great Mike Singletary story (he keeps his pants on in this one) and a great ending series of jokes about John Robinson and his old roommate John Madden. We’ll have a full, new Remember This Crap this week when they get ready for the Bengals. But trust me, the “throwback” edition is a fun listen.
And, we can’t go this Sunday morning without acknowledging the emotional return of Kris Bryant to Wrigley Field. Of all of our departed (they’re not dead…not even Jake Marisnick who does seem to be buried in San Diego) heroes, Kris the first to return with a new team. And it sucks, because of all those guys it made the most sense for the Cubs to keep him. Why, look at how the Giants have struggled since he arrived. They’re a lousy 27-11 since the trade.
When the Cubs swabbed the decks of everybody but Jason Heyward who makes actual money, it certainly would have set up nicely to pay the market rate to keep the best one, right? I mean, all he ever did was win Rookie of the Year, Most Valuable Player, go to the All-Star Game four times in seven seasons and win you a World Series.
But hey, if they did, think how long they would have needed to wait to give him a number sign from the scoreboard (they’re going to run out of those things, eventually) and a wrinkled flag.
I mean look at that thing. Does anybody own an iron?
And why was Crane there? Was it to apologize to Kris for botching the TV network so atrociously that it gave the Garbage Family That Owns The Cubs™ an excuse to not pay anybody? I mean, we know why Jason McLeod was there. Jed was still in quarantine, and after all of his draft picks went tits up the Cubs “promoted” Jason to a position where he has nothing to actually do.
The Cubs played a tribute to video before that little on field bit of perfunctoriness, and it make Bryant cry.
Sure. Clearly he didn’t want to stay. Lots of guys get choked up when they return to places they don’t give a shit about.
As you know, I had adopted the Giants as my team to glom onto to make the rest of the baseball season worth watching after the Cubs started handing their playoff shot away and the sell-off became inevitable. So it was cool for me, at least, that they were the ones who traded for the best Cubs’ player of this generation. And, yes, he’s still doing all of the KB things (for better and worse) that we came to know.
Every time he dives for a ball there’s a 59% chance that he has sprained every joint in his body. And then he hits a 500 foot homer. The Giants still can’t believe that they can just ask him to play any spot on the field and he can field it better than the guy who usually plays there.
The Giants record (92-50) makes no sense when you just look at their roster. Their three best players (before the trade) are old holdovers from their World Series teams (Brandon Crawford, Buster Posey and Brandon Belt), they have lost Johnny Cueto to an arm injury and Alex Wood to Covid, but they somehow just keep winning with three starting pitchers. Nobody on the team will hit 30 homers (for the Giants, at least--because KB has 26 homers total) but they lead the league in homers. The reason they win isn’t that they have some great players. They win because they don’t have any bad ones.
Muscle and Fitness coverboy Gabe Kapler (not Mr. Kotter, that’s Gabe Kaplan) is their manager and he just mixes and matches their lineup and batting order everyday. It’s never the same. And it all just works. It’s pretty cool.
But here’s what we should fear? This is the kind of thing you know the Cubs would like to try. And not because it works, but because it’s cheap. The Giants love this so much they have already said they’re going to go out after this successful season and spend money to bring in a few more good players. It’s their thing and even they know it’ll be impossible to replicate this much success with it in any other year.
One of the things they will almost surely do is keep Kris Bryant. So that’s the tipoff right there that their organization is different than the Cubs.
Speaking of the current Cubs (I wasn’t, but now we kind of are), my Cubs’ column from Tuesday on guys like Frank Schwindel, Pee Whiz and Rafael Ortega replicating this “success” was quoted by our good friend Dave Kaplan on the little podcast he does where Gordon Wittenmyer yells at everybody for an hour. I had compared the early success of Frank to 1994 AL Rookie of the Year Bob Hamelin, who like Schwindel was a little too old to really be a rookie. And, who hopefully unlike Frank and Pee and Ortega, completely bombed in his second season in the big leagues.
Gordon had to admit it was a pretty apt comparison, and that must have been a terrible thing for him to have to admit. Muahahahahaha.
Anyway, if you aren’t yet a subscriber, take advantage of the sale this week and you’ll get all of this great Bears and Cubs nonsense (plus other stuff) shoved right into your big email hole.