My 10 most memorable days at Wrigley Field

Wednesday marks the 100th anniversary of Wrigley Field’s opening and the team’s current state caused me to get a bit party-pooperish over on Big League Stew. The birthday, however, caused me to think of the hundreds of days I’ve spent in the Friendly Confines and which were the most memorable.

Here are the top 10 games I attended that immediately came to mind:

1. Cubs vs. Marlins - 2003 NLCS Game 6 - Oct. 14, 2003
I was covering the game for the Kansas City Star and had a “Cubs reach World Series for first time since 1945” story ready to go. Then Steve Bartman happened. Arguably the most famous sporting event I’ll ever attend unless the Cubs somehow win a World Series one day. 

2. Cubs vs. Cardinals - August 19, 1998
It’s no longer kosher to say you had fun during the Great Home Run Race of 1998, but this midday duel between Sammy Sosa and Mark McGwire still sticks in my mind. Sosa caught Mac early with his 48th homer of the season but McGwire would hit two homers later in the day for an 8-6 Cardinal win. Also memorable: I showed up to the game with a new fake ID, only to never be asked for it when buying beer. 

3. Cubs vs. Astros - August 23, 1998
Bought a last-minute ticket on the street for $10 and found it was literally in the last section in the left field grandstand. It actually proved to be a good seat as it gave me a good vantage point to see Sammy Sosa’s 50th and 51st homers land on Waveland Avenue as well as the Blue Angels buzzing the ballpark on their way to the Air & Water Show on the lakefront. (Steve Trachsel would try to delay the game because of the distraction.) Because the Astros won in a rout, winning pitcher Jose Lima would later face questions on whether he had grooved two pitches for his good friend and countryman Sammy Sosa. 

4. Cubs vs. Expos - August 1, 1999
Mark Grace notches career hit 2000 in the ninth inning. I see the Expos in person for the last time.

5. 1990 All-Star Workout Day - July 9, 1990
Attending something like this at 11 years of age pretty much blew my mind. The only downside: A HR derby field featuring Jose Canseco, Cecil Fielder and Darryl Strawberry combined for only EIGHT home runs. Ryne Sandberg won the thing with three. 

6. Cubs vs. Giants - July 19, 2007
This day spawned two of my most favorite articles I’ve ever written. I spent the first four innings inside the big green scoreboard writing on how the operators follow a pennant race. I spent the rest of the day on Barry Bonds watch and the circus that erupted when he hit career homer 752 and 753 during the game

7. Cubs vs. Dodgers - April 18, 1998
First home start by 21-year-old Kerry Wood. Strikes out 7 over 5 for his first career win. Throws his 20K game a few weeks later. 

8. Cubs vs. Mets - August 5, 2007
Tom Glavine’s 300th win. I strangely still have a copy of Vine Line with his autograph on it somewhere … 

9. Cubs vs. Mets - April 5, 1994
I tried for opening day tickets but was shut out and missed Tuffy Rhodes hitting three homers. My consolation prize: Freezing my ass off during the second game of the season. The only thing I really remember is heckling Joe Orsulak all day. 

10. Cubs vs. Marlins - August 22, 1995
First night game at Wrigley Field I ever attended. Felt weird then. Still feels a bit weird now. 


I’ve been looking on YouTube for a from-the-stands clip of Dave Bolland’s Stanley Cup-winning goal for awhile now. This one was posted on June 27, but has less than 100 views and I somehow didn’t see it until now. 

It’s not as close as I would have liked, nor does it really give a good feeling of what it was like to be there past the cheers of a few Blackhawks fans.

It’ll do for now. Anyone seen any better non-commercial clips?

A Kaepernick hater reconsiders his stance in the span of six minutes


So I got this email today about the Colin Kaepernick defense article that’s been getting some good play around the Internet (including from the 49ers QB himself).

Like a lot of other messages I received, it seemed to miss the point of my piece entirely: 

Hey Kev, can I call you Kev?
Alright, Hey Kevin,
I have no complaints about the article. That side by side is unfair. Anyone can find a good picture of someone and a bad picture of someone and make ill-advised comparisons. That does not mean that Kaep does not love to feed his ego.
I checked out the site for Camp Taylor, the one that Kaep is sooooo involved with. You’re right! His face and name is plastered all over their site. When you pull up the home page you instantly see two different large pictures of Kaep and an add selling T-shirts with his name on it. There is a short write up about the camp goals directly under a picture of Kaep. And not to imply that the camp is bogus, it’s a great thing working with kids who need help, regardless of what type of help they need, but this camp seems to be directly aimed at achieving high self-esteem, and is not of any actual medical benefit, which is right down Kaep’s alley! Building his own self-esteem is something he seems to take seriously.
So if you ask me what is more admirable; visiting sick children in the hospital in order to brighten a bad situation and give hope, or going for a swim with kids who are worried about their “zipper” scars affecting their appearance(not that I think there is ANYTHING wrong with that), I would have to give my vote to the guy visiting sick children, whose face isn’t plastered all over the organizations website and advertisements.  It’s easy for a celebrity to lend their name and face to something to generate good press. Some just take it a little further in a more selfless way. Kudos to both though!
Have a great day!

Six minutes later, I received another email from the same person:

I instantly felt a coat of slime cover me as I sent that last email.
What they both do is great! And I, a simple critic behind a screen, should not criticize for the good they do. I apologize.
I still like Russ better though! Go Hawks!
It’s always fun to watch Internet trolls go through a crisis of conscious, especially when you never responded to them in the first place. 
I don’t think this guy’s “apology” talked his way out of his original stance, but this was almost like seeing a small flutter in the Grinch’s heart. 
I’ll chalk it up as a win. 
"Clark? There are two fuzzbuckets outside with a minivan. They’d like to speak with you." 

"Clark? There are two fuzzbuckets outside with a minivan. They’d like to speak with you." 

Looking good, Derrick. 
(Not sure where this originated, give me a holler if you do.)

Looking good, Derrick. 

(Not sure where this originated, give me a holler if you do.)

Can you spot Wrigley Field in this aerial shot of Hoth, err Chicago? 
Also, how many more days until pitchers and catchers?
Photo credit to lorinell19 on Instagram

Can you spot Wrigley Field in this aerial shot of Hoth, err Chicago? 

Also, how many more days until pitchers and catchers?

Photo credit to lorinell19 on Instagram

Why giant snow drifts always remind me of Walter Payton


No matter how long I live and no matter how much snow I shovel, my main impulse after working my way to the end of a driveway will be to grab a football and play a couple rounds of a game we used to call “Walter Payton.”

If you’re from Chicagoland and of a certain age, you know exactly what I’m talking about. You probably played the game yourself.

If you don’t, it probably won’t take you long to figure out what that game entailed or why we called it “Walter Payton” …  






Yahoo Sports’ Loop is the Patrick Sharp of iPhone apps.

Yes I’m biased, but I’m also obsessed … Take it for a spin yourself!

Loopmania! Download the updated Yahoo Sports app today.

Yahoo Sports just tipped the world of GIFs on its head … introducing LOOPS!


By Brian Mead, Director Product Management

To kick off 2014, we’re excited to launch our newly iOS 7 optimized Yahoo Sports for iPhone and iPod touch with a fun twist to unlock your creativity through something we call Loops.

Great question. Loops provide a new way for sports…