Lester: As Guaranteed Rate sign went up for Sox, CEO was cheering Cubs
As the controversial sign designating the White Sox' home as Guaranteed Rate Field went up, the CEO of the mortgage lender namesake was following the Chicago Cubs around the country on their World Series quest.
Guaranteed Rate CEO Victor Ciardelli, of Hinsdale, went to the Cubs' National League Division Championship games in Los Angeles and to World Series games in Cleveland and at Wrigley Field to cheer on the team.
Ciardelli says he's a "huge Chicago sports fan" and "just thrilled for what's going on. Hopefully soon, I'd love (the series) to be the Cubs v. White Sox," he says.
After all those games, "I'm exhausted," he adds.
Back in August, reaction to the company's logo with a giant downward pointing arrow was largely negative and triggered the trending Twitter hashtag #BetterSoxStadium.
But Ciardelli says budging over the backlash was never an option, even after the White Sox sent over several other suggestions -- including replacing the big arrow with a big home plate.
"I made the decision that we've had the logo for 16 years, we've built the name with the brand of the arrow for the past 16 years and that's our business. I want to be known for it. The fact that there are some fans that relate the arrow with negativity as it pertains to baseball, as far as them losing or something, I just thought, people can come up with all sorts of things to be upset about."
Daily Herald Cubs' beat writer Bruce Miles was chosen as an official World Series scorer for the games in Chicago last weekend. How'd it happen?
Miles says it's been traditional for a member of the Baseball Writers Association of America to join the two MLB-appointed scorers during the series. Miles was asked by Chicago chapter Chair Paul Sullivan of the BBWAA. "In his own humorous way, Sully said, 'Since you pay close attention to the games, would you be the third scorer?' I said sure. The games were pretty uneventful from a scoring standpoint. The only call in question was what was originally called a wild pitch. I felt it was a passed ball against Cubs catcher Willson Contreras and made my suggestion. The call was changed. So maybe I had a little effect. On the whole, official scoring is a hard job because there is always somebody who is going to disagree with a call, whether it's a hit or an error."
By the way, it's day 35 of work without a break for Miles, who says at this point, he's running on adrenaline and caffeine.
And congratulations to Miles, who became a first-time grandpa in recent weeks. Daughter Liz and her husband Jeff Rudnick, of Des Plaines, are the proud new parents of beautiful Julianne. In addition to his distinguished career as a baseball writer, Miles likes to tease he's also a "baby whisperer."
Seeing red, in Rosemont
Rosemont residents know Mayor Brad Stephens answers his own door for trick-or-treaters. So neighbors used the occasion to drop by copies of a campaign letter he says bears the village seal and his misappropriated signature.
Stephens says the letter -- which expresses support for 20th District Democratic candidate Merry Marwig -- was circulated to hundreds of homes in the Scott Street subdivision. Problem is Stephens is supporting Republican state Rep. Michael McAuliffe in the race.
Rosemont attorneys have sent a letter to Marwig asking her to stop using the "trademark rose" and denouncing the campaign letter. But Marwig says she didn't distribute it.
She says she's "spoken with and received great support from Rosemont residents, but I don't know who sent this letter."
The rose is sacrosanct, Stephens said. "That rose is iconic to Rosemont, not to a political campaign. We don't put it on any endorsement and won't."
Obama in state races
Democratic state Sen. Jennifer Bertino-Tarrant of Shorewood -- who's involved in a contentious re-election bid against Republican Michelle Smith of Plainfield -- has the distinction of being the first state legislative race that's gotten the attention of President Barack Obama, who endorsed her Tuesday. Obama's backing of Grayslake Democratic state Sen. Melinda Bush, who is making a re-election bid against Mike Amrozowicz of Gurnee, followed on Wednesday.
Is it easier to be bipartisan at the ballpark? Former Democratic state Sen. Dan Kotowski of Park Ridge, former GOP state Sen. Matt Murphy of Palatine and Democratic state Sen. Napoleon Harris of Harvey attended the World Series together last weekend at Wrigley Field.
Kotowski and Murphy, former rivals in the Illinois General Assembly, laugh that the trio's meeting was akin to the 1945 Yalta Conference of President Franklin Roosevelt, United Kingdom Prime Minister Winston Churchill and Soviet Union Premier Josef Stalin. Just who was closest to which role is the subject of continual debate.