North: Mayor was right to limit Cubs night games

  • While the Cubs like hosting concerts in the evening and the revenue such events generate, they also would like the city to allow more night basetball games.

    While the Cubs like hosting concerts in the evening and the revenue such events generate, they also would like the city to allow more night basetball games. JOHN STARKS  | Staff Photographer/2008 file

 
 
Posted7/28/2017 5:19 AM

I'm not a big fan of Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel, and I do like Chicago Cubs president of baseball operations Crane Kenney, but I'm with the mayor on his refusal to allow more night games at Wrigley Field.

The Cubs first agreed to 46 night games for the 2014 season, and they have chosen to use three of those night dates for concerts. Kenney admits the Cubs receive more revenue for the concerts because they don't have to share ticket-sale profits with MLB. The Cubs were also given permission to have six Friday games with the later start time of 3:05 p.m.

 

When night games started at Wrigley Field in 1988, there was a cap of 18 games. It is now at 46 and Emanuel, rightly so, has drawn a line in the sand and said an emphatic "no" to the 54 games the Cubs are requesting.

The Cubs will continue to push the envelope, but my guess is it will be a losing proposition.

Here's an important point the Cubs have overlooked -- their fan base was built on day baseball, and it thrived on it.

I did an informal poll asking 12 Cubs' fans if they wanted more night games. Nine said no, two said yes and one said maybe.

The fans like it as is, so maybe the Cubs should choose less Jimmy Buffett and Billy Joel if they want more night baseball.

Random thoughts:

• The quarterback controversy has begun at Chicago Bears training camp, and it can't be helped. I predict the Chicago media will put more heat on new QB Mike Glennon than they did on Jay Cutler in his eight seasons here.

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•Are there any more spoiled or soft athletes than current NBA players? I'd like to know what Michael Jordan really thinks of them.

• Yoan Moncada hit his first home run for the White Sox off 2015 Cy Young winner Jake Arrieta, so kudos to the 22-year-old second baseman. So far I just see a decent player. He's not a superstar yet, but that could change quickly either way.

• Happy 80th birthday to a good guy and lifelong Chicagoan and legendary newsman Walter Jacobson. CBS Channel 2 never recovered after losing him.

• It was great to hear some vintage "Hawk" Harrelson during the second game of the Crosstown Cup when John Lackey pitched Tuesday night and hit four White Sox batters. It sounded like Hawk was ready to take on Lackey by himself. I loved it. The next game Hawk was more subdued. Please don't tell me he was advised to keep a lower profile, because that's why we tune in -- let's keep the excitement going!

• The MLB on Fox and other sports were beaten in the ratings by America's game … no, not football but cornhole. ESPN televised The "Championship of Bags" tournament on Saturday, and in the "18-49" demographics, throwing a bean bag into a hole in a board actually won in the ratings!

• Follow Mike on Twitter @north2north. Check out his podcast Monday-Friday at mikenorthpodcast.com. His column appears Fridays in the Daily Herald. For more, visit northtonorth.com.

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