It's Opening Day, which means it should start snowing any minute now.
For the benefit of all of you stuck at work, we're going to try to bring you live play-by-play commentary of both games today. It might get a little hectic when the two games overlap, but that's why we have remote controls.
The Cubs tip off first against the New York Mets just after noon Chicago time. The Sox drop the puck two hours later in Kansas City against (insert name of K.C.'s best player here) and the Royals. Is New York or Kansas City any warmer than Chicago right now? What happened to those games in San Juan?
We'll have baseball soon...that is, after these introductions, which are taking forever. Let's hear it for Mets assistant equipment manager Vinny Greco!
Veteran lefty Tom Glavine takes the mound for the Mets and he'll face Mark Grudzielanek. If I have to type that name all day, we're in trouble. Thanks a lot, Bobby Hill. In honor of Harry Caray, I will refer to Grudzielanek as the G. Man. The first pitch is a fastball strike. Glavine then misses three straight outside and the G. Man eventually draws a walk. ... Alex Gonzalez chops one down the third-base line and that puts runners on second and third for Sammy Sosa. ... Sosa lines one to right and the Cubs take a 1-0 lead. Glavine is having trouble throwing strikes.
Man, it's nice to have Steve Stone back.
Moises Alou takes one deep off the bottom of the left-field wall. Thornwood's very own Cliff Floyd botches the play and two more runs score. Glavine quickly strikes out Hee Seop Choi. Here comes Jim Thome, I mean Mark Bellhorn.
Fox has foresaken the little score bug on the screen and it's killing me. OK, there it is. Thank you.
Bellhorn reaches and Corey Patterson rips one to right, scoring another run. Damian Miller hits into a double play, ending the top of the first.
Cubs 4, Mets 0
How strange is it to see Dusty Baker on the top step of the Cubs' dugout?
Piazza drives it to deep center, but Patterson makes a great running grab near the wall.
Wood leads off and throws the bat at the ball and grounds feebly to Alomar. Chip Caray says the G. Man is the first Cub with a 12-letter last name since some guy I've never heard of in 1983. With that said, the G. Man lines one to right.
Glavine is throwing a ton of pitches. He walks Gonzalez and gets a visit from the pitching coach.
Sosa grounds to short, but hustles down the line to avoid the double play. The G. Man takes third. Alou flies out to right to end it.
Kerry Wood takes out Ty Wigginton and home-plate umpire John Hirschbeck with one fastball. It glanced off Wigginton but nailed Hirschbeck right in the jaw and he's taking his time getting his wits about him. Men on first and second.
Jeromy Burnitz, who used to kill the Cubs as a Brewer, picks up where he left off, lining a double to right that scores Vaughn. Rey Sanchez grounds out to second; Wigginton scores and Burnitz takes third. Wood gets Glavine and Cedeno to end the inning.
Cubs 4, Mets 2
Choi smokes one off the wall in left-center for a double and Steve Stone says he expects big things from Choi this year. The last thing you want to do in that situation, Bellhorn grounds to the left side and Choi stays at second. Patterson lines the first pitch into center and big Choi chugs home. Two RBIs for Patterson and the Cubs' kids come through. Patterson gets picked off but still gets the knuckles from Dusty on his way back to the dugout. Miller fans.
Cubs 5, Mets 2
Wood walks Alomar and then retires Floyd and Piazza. Piazza again drove it deep to center but right to Patterson. Wood gets Vaughn looking with that sweeping curve.
Wood grounds to Alomar and the G. Man reaches base for the third time with a single to right. Gonzalez lines to left and here comes Sosa, who has been sitting on 499 home runs since September. He's still sitting. Sosa walks and Art Howe pays a visit to the mound and yanks an unhappy Glavine. Right-hander Scott Strickland comes on to pitch and he walks Alou to load the bases for Choi, who hits the first pitch right to Cedeno in center.
Wood has settled down, getting Wigginton and Burnitz easily. Sanchez pops out and that makes eight straight for Wood.
Bellhorn walks to open the fifth.
A quick check on the Sox pregame on WGN reveals there is no pregame show for the Sox opener. Only Maury Povich making people take paternity tests. Speaking of which, Povich's father was legendary Washington Post sports columnist Shirley Povich. But where are the White Sox? Anyway, we'll check shortly.
In this game Patterson strikes out, Bellhorn steals second and Miller grounds out. Wood hits it to a diving Alomar, who bobbles it and Wood gets an infield single, scoring Bellhorn. And right there is a big difference between last year's team. Last season, Bellhorn wouldn't have taken second the Cubs would've grounded into a double play. Alomar boots the G. Man's grounder and Mets fans are booing. Gonzalez pops out.
Cubs 6, Mets 2
Let's check on the Sox. It's 70 degress in Kansas City and the sun is shining. D'Angelo Jimenez leads off for the Sox and takes a called strike from Runelvys Hernandez. Jimenez pops out and that brings up one of my grandmother's favorite players, Jose Valentin, who, as fast I could type that sentence, lines out to short. Frank Thomas lines a two-out single to right. His skills looked pretty undimished on that swing. Magglio Ordonez sends it deep to right but Brandon Berger makes a great catch against the wall.
Meanwhile, in New York, Kerry Wood fans Cedeno with some serious heat. We can safely assume that the pitcher's spot in the lineup went down without a fight. Two outs. A four-pitch walk to Alomar brings Larry Rothchild out to the mound. Yammer, yammer, yammer, pat on the butt and Wood leans in against Floyd.
Click: Mark Buehrle has gotten two quick outs.
The Cubs and Sox need to coordinate this better. When one is at commercial, the other should be batting.
Click: We'll assume Wood got Floyd because Fox Sports Net is showing a commercial for that Adam Sandler movie.
Click: Mets fans already are leaving. It's the sixth, people. And Sosa's up, at that. Sosa walks, hands his shin guard to Gene Clines and chats up Mo Vaughnn. Alou then hits a pea to left.
Click: Paul Konerko's up on WGN. Not for long. He struck out on three pitches.
Click: Somehow, some way, the Cubs have loaded the bases for Mark Bellhorn. Bellhorn lines it to left and Sosa tags and scores. Cubs 7, Mets 2
A reader suggests I get two TVs. I agree. Though, one with picture within a picture would work, too.. Rowand grounds out and this game is moving. it might catch up to the glacial Cubs game. It has to be said, but this guy who does the breathy voice-overs on the WB ads is kind of creepy. "On a brand new Gilmore Girls..." Wait, why am I watching commercials.
Click: Patterson just jacked a three-run homer. Cubs 10, Mets 2 That's five RBIs for Patterson. Miller grounds out and the Mets can't even throw the ball around the horn correctly and that draws some boos. Troy O'Leary strikes out. This one's over. Let's check the Sox.
Click: The Royals have two on against Buehrle and Angel Berroa grounds one under Jimenez's glove, scoring the game's first run. Royals 1, Sox 0 Men on the corners, no outs. Brent Mayne sends a deep drive to center that Rowand runs down. But Ken Harvey scores. Royals 2, Sox 0 And Carlos Febles now sends one deep to center, over Rowand's head. Rowand makes a great play off the wall and Jimenez turns an equally pretty relay and they nail Berroa at the plate.
Click: Juan Cruz has replaced Wood at Shea in the sixth. I'm told he gave up a lead-off hit to Piazza and then struck out the side.
Click: The Sox go down one, two, three in the top of the third. Seriously, they may lap the Cubs game.
Click: Sosa comes up with two outs and no one on in the top of the seventh. No pressure. Good time for No. 500. Alas, Sosa walks.
Click: Here's Mike Sweeney with a runner on first, no one out. Sweeney sends one deep to center that Rowand runs down. Guy's been busy out there. Buehrle settles down a bit and gets out of the inning.
Click: Mike Bacsik walks Choi to load the bases and Bellhorn sends a pop to center that Roger Cedeno watches fall right into the grass. Two runs score and the Mets fans who are still there are booing mightily. Patterson then jacks another homer for RBI six and seven. Cubs 15, Mets 2 You think Patterson wants to show Don Baylor he's no Oddibe McDowell?
Click: Not nearly as much action in the Sox game. Magglio Ordonez faces Hernandez with one out and one on. He strikes out and then Paul Konerko and Carlos Lee ground out consecutively. Now we're looking at an 'Everyone Loves Raymond' commercial. I'm convinced if one wanted, one could find an episode of that show on at any hour of the day. Not that one would want to.
Click: Bottom of the seventh and Juan Cruz faces pinch hitter Timo Perez. Meanwhile, Cruz is, uh, cruising. He just sat down the immortal Perez looking.
Click: Like I said, Buehrle has settled down. He gives up an infield hit, but then gets Febles to fly out.
Click: The line on Mike Bacsik was nine runs in two innings. Not good. Cruz fans Cedeno for his sixth straight strikeout. End of the seventh.
Click: With one out in the top of the fifth, Joe Crede pops out to the Royals' Michael Tucker in center. Aaron Rowand strikes out to end the inning. This game is moving. Love it.
Click: Joe Crede makes a nice backhanded grab on a pop-up near the seats for the first out. Joe Randa walks and Mike Sweeney moves him to second with a sacrifice fly.
Click: Commercials on both channels!
Click: Back to Cubs, but it's promo for Wednesday's Sox-Royals game on Fox. I'm really confused.
Click: Ah, back to the Sox game. Sandy Alomar Jr. grounds to third. D'Angelo Jimenez flies out to Raul Ibanez in left. Valentin fans and Hernandez has sat down eight straight White Sox. Beer commercial: 'Your momma's so fat she stepped on a dollar and made change.'
Click: Mets go down easily in the eighth.
Click: One out as Buehrle faces Ken Harvey, who pokes a double down the right-field line, his second double of the game. Angel Berroa grounds to Valentin. Harvey stays put.
Click: Thankfully this game's in the ninth.
Click: Back to the Sox. Brent Mayne hits it on the ground to a diving Jimenez, who knocks it down and then catches Harvey in between third and home. Jimenez throws to Crede who in turn thows home to get Harvey to end the inning.
Click: More bad defense for the Mets. Former Cubs pitcher David Weathers missed first while covering the bag. Didn't they just spend six weeks practicing that every day?
Click: Big Frank leads off the top of the seventh and draws a walk off new Royals pitcher Jason Grimsley. Ordonez hits one off the glove of third baseman Joe Randa for a single and Thomas takes third. Konerko nubs one to third, Randa comes home and nails Thomas. One out, first and second, Carlos Lee strikes out and doesn't like the call. Actually, I don't think he knew the count. Joe Crede up.
Click: Joe Borowski mopping up for the Cubs in the bottom of the ninth. Two outs. Wait. Burnitz rips a double down the right-field line. Huge Mets rally coming.
Click: Well, there's another WB commercial on. I take it Crede didn't do anything.
Click: Let's end this game. Thank you. Cubs win 15-2.
Click: Konerko makes a great play on a dribbler down the line and tags Febles as he slides head first into first. Rowand makes two more plays in the outfield, the later a nice diving catch in right-center.
OK, we're with the Sox for good now.
Rowand grounds to second to lead off the eighth. After a lengthy at-bat with many foul balls, Sandy Alomar Jr. grounds to Joe Randa at third. D'Angelo Jiminez, 0 for 3 today, grounds to short to end the inning.
Let's hope someone has Tom Gamboa's back today.
Tom Gordon comes on to pitch for the Sox in the bottom of the eighth and Mike Sweeney greets him with a double down the left-field line. Raul Ibenez then flies out. Desi Relaford pinch hits and Gordon crosses up Alomar, who lets the ball get by. Sweeney takes third. Alomar and Gordon have a brief conversation and Gordon bounces the next pitch off the plate, allowing Sweeney to score. Relaford walks. Harvey flies to Oronez in right.
A reader has pointed out that the Cubs' first-base coach is not Sandy Alomar Sr., as I think I've written more than once today. It's Gene Clines. Alomar now works for the Rockies. Sorry about that. No runs, no hits, one error (that we know of) on my part.
While I was beating myself up over that mistake, I missed the end of that inning. Anyway:
Royals 3, Sox 0
Righty Mike MacDougal comes on to try and close this one out for the Royals. Valentin rips it to right but it's right at Michael Tucker. One out. This MacDougal dude throws hard, close to 100. And then he throws an 0-2 hook to Thomas, who can only look at it. Angel Berroa makes a great play at short on an Ordonez grounder and that's it. Royals take this one, 3-0.