It's hardly news that this is one of the grimmer seasons on the North Side. Tonight, while Watson and I sat congenially through yet another Cubs loss (3–0 to the Braves on home runs by Freddie Freeman and Dan Uggla, both of whom have names like seventies' pop stars), I found myself reviewing the roster and wondering whom I wouldn't trade for a nice ham sandwich. This is a standard I picked up from my crusty high-school Latin teacher, Mr. Sullivan, who once famously told an underperforming pal of mine, "You can be replaced by a ham sandwich."
So who rises about the pork-on-white line? Few of the veterans: we don't need to rehearse the Ramirez-Soriano-Zambrano litany of overly generous contracts now that that era is (we hope) over. The next GM really is going to have his work cut out for him, though. Maybe Marlon Byrd, who's useful enough. Starlin Castro, even though he was given tonight off for "mental health" reasons--apparently he finds this death march of a season to be a little tedious, too. Maybe Darwin Barney. Possibly Geovany Soto, since catchers are hard to come by. Whom am I missing? Ryan Dempster? Sorry, his best years are behind him. Matt Garza? Decent pitcher, wrong park. A reliever or two? Please, most relievers can be replaced by... well, ham sandwiches.
Speaking of which, you know what's a good sandwich? The Sergio's Special at Hannah's Bretzel. You do have to take out a loan to get one, but it's almost worth it.