By George Ofman-
(CBS) And now boys and girls, the hangover.
The celebration of the Blackhawks Stanley cup championship will continue through Friday with a downtown parade. There will be shouts from the streets “LET’S GO HAWKS” and so many others cheering their boys of winter who actually won a championship on the third day of summer. Fans will continue to hoist their own cups, perhaps subconsciously thinking about what’s ahead: The Cubs and the White Sox.
Can we petition the NHL to start next season now?
Instead of drowning your sorrows, you’ll have to drown you futures.
But there are streaks of blue strewn amidst the dark clouds. The trading deadline is July 31st and the Bears begin training camp on the June 24. Whoopee.
While every member of the Hawks, including those with aprons and push brooms, get to have the Cup for a day, you and I will have to endure the everyday drudgery of watching bad baseball. Really bad baseball. Have you checked out Starlin Castro’s batting average and fielding percentage? Have you monitored the Sox conga line on the base paths, the one that keeps getting disconnected? Have you dared to view Alexei Ramirez and his iron glove disintegrate? At least the Cubs determined Carlos Marmol had to go, designating him for assignment.
Pass that Cup, please, and a bottle full of aspirin.
Misery usually begs for company, but success shouldn’t lead us to the blues, unless they’re blaring from a Lincoln Avenue watering hole.
But here we are, forced to except reality. It’s the good, the bad and the ugly, in other words: the Blackhawks, the Cubs and the Sox.
If you haven’t noticed – or conveniently forgot – our baseball teams are languishing in far less than mediocrity. They can’t hit, can’t field and can’t wait to unload players. The spike caused by the Blackhawks is about to become the dip dumped on us by the denizens of those teams on the north and south side of town. Die-hards will die harder while Matt Garza waits to be dispatched and Jesse Crain becomes more sought after than a share of Apple stock.
From now until the end of July, the highlight of our baseball season will be who goes and for what. House cleaning is as inevitable as a nervous chuckle from Dale Sveum. You will pine for it the way a kid pines for a double scoop of ice cream covered in myriad sprinkles in one of those chocolate-covered waffle cones. Expensive, I might add.
You will plead for Rick Hahn to unload Jake Peavy, Matt Thornton and if he can, Adam Dunn whose batting average is finally flirting with the Mendoza line. .200 never looked so good. You will beg bosses Theo Epstein and Jed Hoyer to deal anyone with a fetch price, save for Anthony Rizzo and a precious few others.
And then, Bears training camp, full of optimism or pessimism, renews. All depends on if your Stanley Cup is half full or half empty.
But for now there is the joy of a championship, the third one here since 2005. Regale Chicago sports fans. Partake of the prancing in the streets. Just be prepared for what awaits you.
George Ofman is a sports anchor and reporter for WBBM Newsradio 780 & 105.9FM. Look for him on Facebook and find him on Twitter at @georgeofman.