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The 13 Worst Cubs Injuries Ever

…of the Dusty Baker Era

 

If anything has summarized the Cubs since Dusty Baker took over as manager, it’s injuries. Let’s not think about the disabled list’s Glimmer Twins, the perennially-sidelined Kerry Wood and Mark Prior, for now (although one does appear on this list… twice!) Since 2003, some of the most bizarre maladies have affected this team. Call it bad luck, call it a joke, or just call it all one big honking coincidence. And yeah, in honor of bad luck, I picked thirteen of the most unlucky, most frightening injuries any ballplayer could face, both on the field and off. All by guys in the bright blue pinstripes, all in the last three and a half years.

 

Enjoy!

 

13. You’ve got mail, Carlos!

May 2005, at somebody’s computer

 

 

misleading picture of zambrano doing something else because i don't have one of him at a computer

Carlos Zambrano has long been known as the “iron man” of the Cubs’ rotation for his inability to get hurt, or his ability to get hurt and then bounce back. But leave it to the most emotional player on the team to get hurt doing something so inane: checking his email. According to ESPN, Carlos had been spending four hours a day communicating with his brother online. It wasn’t carpal tunnel syndrome, but it did force him to miss a start. Maybe he was hitting those keys a little too hard. At least the next injury was a little more physical… right?

 

12. La-Z-Break

May 2005, Wrigley Field

 

 

Reliever Mike Remlinger was relaxing in the Cubs’ clubhouse; upon getting up, he spins around quickly and jams his left pinky finger between the arm of his chair and the chair immediately next to his. A bruise, right? Well, a bit more than a bruise—a non-displaced fracture and a trip to the DL. Luckily he left the roster just in time for another player to come back from the disabled list—and his story’s coming up.

yeah, those recliners are death traps

 

11. MEGADETH RULES

August 2004, Wrigley Field

 

 

david banner, i just slashed your tires

If you have a bad outing against an intra-division rival, how do you act? Sullen? Sure. Angry? You bet. And if you give up six runs on six hits in one inning to the Astros, what would you do? You’d probably throw something, maybe your glove, right? Maybe if you’re REALLY pissed, you’d knock over something in the dugout, like a bat rack or a Gatorade cooler… right? Absolutely! And maybe after that, you’d find a big metal fan. Oh, man, you’re angry. So you kick it, right? Definitely. And if it messes up your knee so badly you have to go on the DL and miss three weeks?

 

Congratulations, you’re Kyle Farnsworth! Now go beat up Jeremy Affeldt for wearing that silly Royals uniform with the sleeveless vest and black undershirt.

 

Luckily we got this out of it, and all those that followed.

 

10. Me?! On the DL? Since when?

July 2003, Wrigley Field

 

 

Now it’s time to look at the on-the-field injuries. I didn’t really plan it that way; it just happened. As much as the off-the-field injuries were insane, the on-the-field injuries were much worse and cost the players a lot more time. First case in point: this harrowing crash between uninjurable pitcher Mark Prior and Braves infielder Marcus Giles. This one’s pretty low on the list because despite spending time on the DL, Prior largely recovered from this one and led his team to the playoffs. Of course, Dusty’s use of him that year makes people wonder if he will ever start a season with the team again.

 

And this is his only appearance on this list, right?  Right?

is he laughing there on the left? because if he is... *shakes fist*

 

9. And now some random facts about Carlos Lee…

April 2005, Wrigley Field

 

 

 

 

David Blaine stayed in that glass box for so long just to stay away from Carlos Lee. The only reason World War II occurred was because Carlos Lee was taking a nap. Carlos Lee’s favorite cereal is Kellogg’s Marbles ‘n’ Gravel. Batman’s alter ego is Carlos Lee. Bill Gates is Carlos Lee’s butler. When Carlos Lee and his friends go to the movies, they call him “Fire!” because it’s safer than saying “Carlos Lee” in a crowd. Carlos Lee is so hardcore he is actually willing to go hunting with Dick Cheney (omg timely joke). Little Orphan Annie had a hard-knock life because of Carlos Lee. Carlos Lee came up with the recipe that The Rock uses, so Carlos Lee actually is responsible for the smell of what The Rock is cooking. And why was Todd Walker on the DL last year? Because Carlos Lee roundhouse kicked him there. Oh, and Carlos Lee doesn’t sleep. He waits.

 

8. Geseundheit!

May 2004, PETCO Park

 

 

Dusty Baker’s hiring as Cubs manager coincided with the weirdest years of Sammy Sosa’s career. His last two years as a Cub featured a couple trips to the disabled list, a suspension for using a corked bat, and a heavily-publicized early departure during the last game of the 2004 season, an enduring symbol of the bad taste that season left in our mouths. But the most bizarre incident? As he was entering the visitors’ clubhouse in San Diego, he sneezed twice, then grabbed a chair to regain his composure. The result? Back spasms and… yep, that’s right, a trip to the almighty disabled list. Sammy’s got one more on this list, you probably know which one it is, but yeah, it’s higher for a reason. Read on, why don’t you.

bearded sammy = evil sammy

 

7. The only thing to fear is Wrigley itself

September 2004, Wrigley Field

 

 

i couldn't find a picture of the injury, so i figured him in a devil rays uniform is just as upsetting

Ben Grieve is one of those guys you feel sorry for… sometimes. As an Athletic (A? Oakland A? Athletics player? Athlete? A-Teammate?) he was Rookie of the Year. Accolades exit stage left. After that he jumps from team to team, playing for the Pirates, Brewers, Devil Rays, and of course, the Cubs. (He’s currently in the White Sox minor league system, I think.) Well, it’s 2004, and the Cubs bring up Grieve as part of the September roster expansion after receiving him in a trade with Milwaukee.

 

And lo and behold, he becomes the victim of the worst injury Wrigley Field has ever given anyone. He needed three stitches to help him heal when he ran into the outfield wall… and cut himself on the ivy.

 

Rookie of the year, eh? Henry Rowengartner spent his entire Cubs career unhurt. Oh, wait, never mind. And then he had sex with Tara Reid. Ew.

 

6. Choi to the Wood, the hurt has come

June 2003, Wrigley Field

 

 

 

Wow, Hee Seop! You certainly stole the show when Roger Clemens was trying to go for his 300th career win. You and Kerry Wood, that is. And when you two collided, I was surprised it was YOU that went to the DL! Too bad you Cubs career pretty much ended there. And the guy that replaced you at first in 2004? He’s never gotten hur

 

Ah, cripes.

 

 

5. Back at’cha!

May 2005, Wrigley Field

 

 

you see, i knew that was your weak spot. oh wait, that was the other cubs guy

Can’t believe there isn’t a picture of this online, or I’m not looking hard enough. Anyway, it’s hard to believe there have been scarier injuries than the one that took out Mark Prior last year. A simple comebacker play becomes a 112-mph bone-breaker, and Prior is sidelined yet again. In fact, did he ever come back last year? I don’t know.

 

Speaking of last year…

 

4. Adam Greenberg, one-pitch wonder

July 2005, Dolphins Stadium

 

 

Meet the perfect Cub cup of coffee. The Cubs decided to get offensive help by bringing up two young guns from AA: some guy named Matt Murton, and then this guy, Adam Greenberg. While we all know Murton has become The Entire Chicago Cubs Offense in 2006, what happened to Greenberg? Well, let’s see. He began against the Marlins, he faced Valerio de los Santos in his first major league plate appearance, first pitch…

 

Right to the head. He suffers a concussion, after which he goes back to the minors.

 

Well, at least you can’t argue with that perfect 1.000 on-base percentage.

apparently the one thing you have to do with a concussion victim immediately is protect the crotch

 

3. At least it didn’t hurt his head… or did it?

April 2003, PNC Park

 

 

 

 

 

Earlier I mentioned how 2003 pretty much began Sammy Sosa: The Crazy Years. Although the juice (and getting off it) possibly (probably?) had a hand in Sosa’s madcap decline, let’s put steroids aside for now. Before the infamous beaning, Sammy practically stood on top of the plate. Sammy didn’t spend any DL time for the beaning, but he did for an unrelated toe injury. After coming back, Sosa began standing a lot further away from the plate, and fans soon noticed his numbers went way down. Suddenly Good Sammy becomes Evil Sammy (see facial hair above): the corked bat, the leaving early, one of his teammates eventually smashing his boombox, etc. None of these things would have probably happened if he hadn’t gotten his plate stance messed up because of a newfound fear of the ball. So it was more of an injury to Sosa’s mentality. Still, it hurt the Cubs.

 

Oh yeah, and he was on steroids. Absolutely. Him and McGwire.

You kidding me? Look at him.

 

2. One play, two injuries, one stillborn season

April 2006, Dodger Stadium

 

 

 

This is the closest I’ve ever gotten to believing in a curse.

 

Not only does the injury bug seem to target the Cubs’ best player, it also gets two players hurt in one play: pitcher Scott Eyre tries to dive for the Furcal grounder, he messes up his knee. Lee tries to tag out Furcal, he royally fucks up his wrist. And who were the Cubs trying to acquire in the offseason? Furcal.

 

When in Chicago, Rafael Furcal eats at the Billy Goat.

 

 

I know I might be putting the Lee-Eyre injury too high, but yeah, I pretty much made the case that it seems to sum up the Cubs’ misery these last few years with injuries. No matter how well a Cubs team plays, it will always get massively fucked over with players hurting. It’s the law.

 

Oh, wait, I still need to find a number one. What could be more agonizingly painful than a broken wrist? Or elbow? Or head-plunk? What could be more intensely painful than anything imaginable?

 

Seriously, what?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

1. Holy. Fucking. OW.

April 2005, The Late Busch Stadium II

 

ow oww owww owwww

 

Never has a more painful injury been televised. The most sensitive part of a man’s body, RIPPED FROM THE BONE. That’s exactly what happened. Not your average wimpy, wimpy, wimpy groin tear. This is a hefty, hefty, hefty injury. Besides the ramifications of the Cubs’ 2005 season going down the tubes, watching Nomar Garciaparra make one step toward first base and pretty much collapse to the ground clutching his manhood sends shivers down my spine. It’s not pretty. And no number of Mia Hamm/sex life jokes could make it seem any funnier.

 

Seriously.

 

OUCH.

 

Okay, so there’s your list of thirteen of the nastiest reasons the Cubs seem to hilariously suck at life. Just thirteen bumps on the road to the greatest Cubs miracle ever:

                                                                                                                                                    

seeing Albert Pujols getting hurt.

 

the only good thing about this picture is that wendell kim isn't the third base coach anymore

 

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