J. D. Thorne, speaker and author of the new book Baseball’s Winning Ways (Available on Amazon Books).

“Fire Sale” By the Cubs

A “Fire Sale” by a sports owner and management team is not unprecedented.  Is it perceived as a deep insult to duly faithful and multiple generations long suffering Cubs fans to do it?  Absolutely. Remember Rizzo in 2016?

The reports of Rizzo hitting a home run in his first New York Yankee appearance was a knife through the heart.  Allowing Yu Darvish to leave was one thing. Trading Schwarber last season was a second wound. But actively trading the rest of the first string is like Brutus and the Roman Senate slaying Julius Caesar?  Et tu Brute?

But it’s not unprecedented.

In 1915 Connie Mack traded away his “$100,000 Infield.”  The Athletics had won four of five of the last American League championships from 1910 to 1914.

Just winning the World Series in 2016, however great that achievement for modern Cubs, does not equal it.  The “$100,000 Infield”  was named when a reporter asked owner and manager Connie Mack the question, “Would you accept a 100,ooo dollars for them,” to which Mack said, “No.”  Henceforward the nickname, “$100,000  infield,”  stuck.

But in 1915 the whole lot of them were all traded.  It was reported that owner Mack decided he would rather be paid than he would enjoy paying exorbitant salaries for his players. He cashed in.  The team losing in the 1914 World Series to the 2 to 1 underdog “Miracle Braves” hurt, but hurting more was the increasing monetary demands from the players being courted to play by a competitive potential new 3rd major league, “the Federal League.” The new league played a bigger part.

In salary negotiations, the players naturally had played one league against the other.  Mack, an Attorney, decided to “walk away from the table.”  So that’s the way it goes in the big leagues.

For Cubs fans, the bad news is that it took 14 years for Connie Mack to rebuild a team that could make the World Series again in 1929. [beating the 1929 Cubs, of course.]

But today things can work at warp speed.  And Cub fans are positive thinkers.  At least they were before for over 100 seasons!

Copyright 2021, Sporting Chance Press

My Book:

Baseball’s Winning Ways is written for enjoyment, inspiration, and information by the author of The 10 Commandments of Baseball, J. D. Thorne. Winning Ways explores baseball history and high profile players both current and past. American history highlights provide a more complete point of reference. The drama of the game, its history, baseball superstitions, statistics explained, and more provide features of interest to all fans from age 12 on up. The central theme of the book is baseball’s winning ways, those principles essential to the game itself–values that parents, grandparents, teachers and coaches want to pass down that are as important now as ever.