Fittest loser

Articles filed under Kasper, Len

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  • Hank Aaron speaks during a ceremony celebrating the 40th anniversary of his 715th home run as the actual bat and ball from the hit stand on display before the start of a baseball game between the Atlanta Braves and the New York Mets on April 8 in Atlanta.

    Aaron or Bonds? Time to let go of that angstApr 13, 2014 12:00 AM
    A great thing about the game of baseball is that we hold its records, its heritage and its long-retired and deceased heroes dear to our hearts. Butwhenever the modern baseball world interferes with or “attempts” to erase, obscure or offend those memories, we tend to lash out and immediately condemn. In his weekly Cubs insider column, Len Kasper says i's time to let go of the angst over Barry Bonds and Hank Aaron.

     
  • Opening Day is all about firstsMar 30, 2014 12:00 AM
    Opening Day never disappoints. It has been my favorite day of the entire sports calendar since I can remember.

     
  •  While Cubs fans love Wrigley Field and its iconic scoreboard, they're also passionate about the product on the field, and getting frustrated with the slow rebuilding process.

    Why Cubs fans are so passionate about their team Sep 29, 2013 12:00 AM
    Why are Cubs fan so passionate about their team, and why do they care so much? Len Kasper examines the emotions and issues tied to the franchise that hasn't played in a World Series since 1945.

     
  • The Oakland Athletics are a team worth rooting for, says Len Kasper, as they head into the postseason.

    Hitting to all fields as season winds down Sep 23, 2013 12:00 AM
    Len Kasper has some general baseball observations as we hit the final week of the regular season.

     
  • Cubs starter Travis Wood, and catcher Welington Castillo have shown enough positives to be considered part of the core in the team's rebuilding effort.

    Castillo, Wood give Cubs some positive vibe Sep 15, 2013 12:00 AM
    While Anthony Rizzo and Starlin Castro continue to garner a lot of attention during the Cubs' rebuilding efforts, Len Kasper says the biggest positive developments of 2013 on the current roster are the seasons Travis Wood and Welington Castillo have put together.

     
  • The St. Louis Cardinals have been terrific at the plate with runners in scoring position, but it's not easy to explain why they aren't hitting as well the rest of the time.

    A baseball cheat sheet for the most important stats Sep 9, 2013 12:00 AM
    If you want to know how good your team really is, it's important to pay attention to the right numbers. In that spirit, Cubs insider Len Kasper provides a cheat sheet on how to use (and not use) stats to evaluate performances for players and teams.

     
  •  The Cubsí Darwin Barney heads to the dugout after scoring against the Phillies in the first inning Sunday.

    Kasper: Barney is my kind of baseball player Sep 2, 2013 12:00 AM
    Len Kasper sits down and talks with one of his favorite baseball players, Cubs Gold Glove second baseman Darwin Barney.

     
  • Cubs first baseman Anthony Rizzo, here during warmups in San Diego, understands that baseball is a business with lots of roster changes, but he’ll still miss former teammate David DeJesus. Veterans being shipped off to other teams is just one thing of what makes August a challenging month for many teams, says Len Kasper.

    Cubs’ young stars learn August can be tough on clubhouses Aug 26, 2013 12:00 AM
    We are nearly through baseball’s toughest month. No, it’s not September, it’s August. Yes, September isn’t easy either, considering some players/teams are limping to the 162-game finish line. Len Kasper explains why it's so challenging on players and clubhouses.

     
  •  Cubs fans may disagree, but Cardinals catcher Yadier Molina is one of Len Kasperís favorite players who donít play for the Cubs.

    Many to root for outside of the Cubs Aug 18, 2013 12:00 AM
    Len Kasper presents his non-Cubs all-stars, those around the majors he both respects and appreciates.

     
  • St. Louis Cardinals’ Matt Holliday, right, is congratulated by Carlos Beltran, after his 3-run home run against the Cubs in the fourth inning Saturday.

    Cardinals offer view of Cubs’ hopes Aug 12, 2013 12:00 AM
    Every time Len Kasper sees the Cardinals he asks himself, how in the world do they do it year after year? While in St. Louis over the weekend, he sought out some answers.

     
  • In support of a one-of-a-kind sport Aug 4, 2013 12:00 AM
    This week, for all those who doubt that baseball is the most tried-and-true, most intellectual, quirkiest and simply greatest game on earth, I have a few questions for you. How many other major pro sports leagues have histories that date to the Ulysses S. Grant administration? Where else can you blatantly steal something and not only avoid being arrested but be cheered for it? Or earn millions of dollars and wide acclaim for failing to do your job between 60-70 percent of the time?

     
  • Matt Garza, left, fist-bumps Rangers teammate Elvis Andrus after pitching in the third inning against the Yankees on Wednesday. Garza had an impressive run with the Cubs, but the North Siders did the right thing in acquiring some nice prospects last week in a trade, according to Len Kasper.

    Cubs say two goodbyes, but also a big helloJul 29, 2013 12:00 AM
    Quite a week for the Cubs as they traded Matt Garza and Alfonso Soriano while watching Junior Lake begin his career in comet-like fashion. Len Kasper looks back on the action, plus offers his insight on Junior Lake, Soriano's tenure and the trouble in Brewers country.

     
  • Len Kasper: Trying to sort through steroids issue Jul 22, 2013 12:00 AM
    This week Len Kasper begins his column on steroids by saying he is am tired of steroids. "I’m sure you are, too. But hear me out because maybe together we can put to bed our angst over the whole thing."

     
  • For Len Kasper, the highlight of the Cubs’ first half was, without a doubt, the ascendance of pitcher Travis Wood.

    An up-and-down first half is in the rearview mirror Jul 14, 2013 12:00 AM
    It was an interesting Cubs’ first half to say the least. The highlight for me, without a doubt, was Travis Wood’s ascendance. I've always liked how he competes, but this year he has added a laser-like side-to-side command of all of his pitches and it has made him an elite guy, at least for half a season.

     
  •  Cubs president of baseball operations Theo Epstein, right, and general manager Jed Hoyer were the first to target international pool money via trades.

    Kasper: Give Cubsí front office credit Jul 8, 2013 12:00 AM
    For the millionth time, ďMoneyballĒ was not about on-base percentage. Or computers taking over for scouts. It was about exploiting market inefficiencies. Again, repeat after me: It was about EXPLOITING Ö MARKET Ö INEFFICIENCIES.

     
  • Len Kasper: Busy week indeed for Cubs Jul 1, 2013 12:00 AM
    Lots of Cubs news in the past week, including Carlos Marmol being designated for assignment and Ian Stewart getting released from AAA Iowa.

     
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  •  Cubs starter Travis Wood has a shot an earning an all-star berth, according to Len Kasper.

    Cubs boast legitimate all-star candidates Jun 16, 2013 12:00 AM
    As we near midseason, itís time to start thinking about the All-Star Game. The contest itself doesnít excite me that much and I am not a fan of the World Series homefield advantage component. However, sorting out the participants themselves is intriguing and while the Cubs are a second-division club at the moment, they have several interesting all-star candidates.

     
  • Key internet stops provide wealth of data Jun 9, 2013 12:00 AM
    I am often asked how I go about my daily research during the baseball season. This week, I thought I would give you a quick primer on my favorite baseball websites. The internet isnít my only source of information. Much of it comes from the Cubsí media relations staff, MLB media guides and game notes. I also get lots of great material from conversations with uniformed personnel, front office members and other broadcasters. However, there are dozens of great websites that any baseball fan can look at to get much of the same information I find on a daily basis.

     
  •  If you think fielding at the major league level has fallen off, Len Kasper says you should think again. In 1950 the error rate was nearly 1 per game, while it was at 0.62 per game in 2012.

    Two keys to enjoying baseball: stay humble and curiousJun 2, 2013 12:00 AM
    While Len Kasper wonít claim that old school vs. new school in baseball is only about age, he admits that baseball people, for the most part and like in most other areas of life, tend to process things along generational lines. That said, he's not afraid to admit he doesn't know everything, and he explains in this Cubs insider column.

     
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