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posted: 11/4/2011 5:30 AM

Spellman's Scorecard: Classy move by Cubs

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Fact:

The Chicago Cubs as we've known them are gone.

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180 degrees:

If you're nostalgic about the team, the park, or just the overall aura of the Cubs, you better buckle up because it's going to be a shock the your system.

Because:

These guys mean business.

Forte's forte:

Speaking of business, even when he complains about his current contract, Matt Forte is so low-key cool about it that it's difficult not to feel a little for the guy.

Irony!

Actual press release: Next Tuesday, Forte, along with Charles Tillman, U.S. Rep. Judy Biggert and Visa Inc will be teaming up to help Chicago area students tackle their financial futures by engaging them in a different kind of football game -- Financial Football.

That's too perfect.

And here I am at Carlsbad Caverns ...:

Hour 4 of Theo and Jed's meeting with Mike Quade.

But seriously:

That's a classy move to talk with Quade in person. As was phoning Ryne Sandberg right away to inform him of his status.

Not so sweet:

Just a little FYI: That new Walter Payton biography is ranked No. 619 on Amazon's best sellers list this week.

Cool justice:

Whether you agree with their verdicts or not -- like the recent 2-game ding against the Blackhawks' Daniel Carcillo -- gotta love the way the NHL uses the web to explain disciplinary actions.

At nhl.com you can watch a representative from -- love this name -- the Department of Player Safety go over the video and explain how the final verdict was reached.

Very informative … and refreshing.

Wouldn't it be nice?

If Mark Buehrle weren't allowed to quietly walk away after a stellar run on the South Side?

She's the one:

Havre de Grace in the Breeders Cup Classic.

And now back to hockey:

The NHL announced this week that NBC will televise a Black Friday showdown between the Bruins and Red Wings.

So, let's see:

The options are to either get up at 3:30 a.m., wait in line for a couple of hours in the cold and then deal with a pushy mass of humanity all in order to save $72 on a TV.

Or:

Sleep in. Settle onto the couch with snacks appropriate for hockey and enjoy the afternoon.

I'm gonna go with ... :

Plan B.

Alabama? LSU?

Don't care; just want a game that lives up to the hype.

Question:

Doesn't this one have Keith Jackson's name written all over it?

Wouldn't it be nice?

Crosstown legends Ron Santo and Minnie Minoso have been named candidates for baseball's Hall of Fame Class of 2012 and will be considered for enshrinement by the 16-member Golden Era Committee.

Rest that voice:

Bill Baker.

Before and after picture:

It's going to be amazing how different Wrigley Field will look in 5 years.

Whatever:

Lenny Dykstra vs. Jose Canseco in a "celebrity" boxing match on Saturday. Where's Danny Bonaduce when you need him?

The sad but true quote:

"This is what the sport has become associated with, a sinister substance mixed in a black bag? Holy moly. How on Earth did we get to this sorry state?"

-- Horse owner/breeder George Strawbridge Jr., lobbying to get rid of drugs in thoroughbred racing.

• Mike Spellman's Scorecard column appears Fridays in the Daily Herald.

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