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MESA, AZ - MARCH 09: Marlon Byrd #24 of the Chicago Cubs runs the bases after hitting a solo home run against the Kansas City Royals in the third inning against during the spring training baseball game at HoHoKam Stadium on March 9, 2011 in Mesa, Arizona. (Photo by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images) *** Local Caption *** Marlon Byrd
On Sunday, you were likely enjoying the really beautiful weather, watching the Blackhawks nearly squander their playoff spot or enjoying the Bulls win over the Magic. If you were smart, you were doing one of those things and not watching the Cubs melt down against the Brewers.
The Cubs were up 5-4 going in the bottom of the eighth when Kerry Wood gave up a two-run homer to Casey McGehee. That was bad enough, but then in the top of the ninth Marlon Byrd was caught stealing when there were no outs.
When reporters had the audacity to ask Byrd about the steal, he responded with slightly less love than he shows the seagulls that often hang out with him in center field.
"I look at the third base coach," he said, referring to Ivan DeJesus.
So was he given the steal sign?
"Did I go?" he said. "OK. End of question."
After repeating himself several times, Byrd cut off the questioning.
"Done," he said. "Beat it. I respect you guys all the time, and we lose a close game like that and that's the question you ask? Forget it. Beat it."
It's not even halfway through April, and a Cubs player is already telling reporters to beat it.
But this could actually be translated as a good thing. Byrd is unhappy with the loss. He's not laughing about it. He's not joking five minutes after the Cubs gave up what should have been a win to a division rival. His anger is misdirected, but instead of condemning its direction let's celebrate that it's even there. If he was just showing up to pick up a paycheck, he wouldn't be so angry.
That's the good sign to take away from this game, Cubs fans. This isn't the kind of team who will laugh at a bad record or enjoy the moniker "Lovable Losers." This is the team who will spit nails over every loss.
Isn't that the kind of team you want to cheer on?
Maggie Hendricks is a Chicago based sports blogger who spends most of her time writing posts about MMA and the Bears for Grizzly Detail. She's taken her talents to baseball during the Bears off-season.