Ivy Envy - Chicago Cubs Fan Podcast (UNOFFICIAL) (general)

After a 2-5 stretch before our last episode, the Cubs managed to turn things around and perhaps save their season. We recorded this episode during Wednesday’s Cubs game against the Pirates when the 6-game winning streak was still intact.

We look at the trade deadline and discuss the Cubs activity and inactivity at the deadline. What do the actions of the Cubs front office tell us about how they view this 2015 team?

The Cubs playoff odds went up 30% in the last week and we talk about what led to the winning streak with pitching and offense. We also talk about where Cubs fans heads should be heading into the last two months of the season. We also answer a number of listener questions.

Direct download: Episode_739.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:02am CDT

On this, the 335th episode of The Ivy Envy Podcast, we try to pick up the pieces from a 2-5 week of Cubs baseball that could have easily been 0-7. The Cubs struggles are impossible to ignore now. The offense didn’t produce but a strong performances from the pitching staff helped keep things rolling. But now, the offense is still struggling and those strong pitching performances are coming back down to earth and it hasn’t been enough to keep the losses off the board.

We discuss everything going on around the Cubs right now, from these offensive struggles to the upcoming trade deadline. We answer listener questions, Kurt gives us a scary stat of the week and we read some internet muscle flexes.

Direct download: Episode_738.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:53pm CDT

On the 334th, we talk about Rizzo and Bryant in the All Star Game festivities, Miguel Montero’s thumb injury and the promotion of Kyle Schwarber.

We share our predictions on the Cubs’ post-All Star break record and answer listener questions. Kurt gives a Scary Stat of the Week and we read a few Internet Muscle Flexes.

Direct download: Episode_737.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 6:51pm CDT

On this episode of the podcast, we recap the first half of the 2015 season and look ahead to the 2nd half.

Direct download: Episode_736.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 9:45pm CDT

On this mid-week episode of the podcast, we talk about the ups and downs of the Cubs series against the Cardinals this week. In the 4 games in 3 days, the Cubs gave us a lot to be happy about and were one strike from taking 3 of 4 from the Cardinals. 

Direct download: Episode_735.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 9:38am CDT

On this episode of The Ivy Envy Podcast, we talk about the slump the Cubs are in…you know the one where they’ve gone 5-1 in the last week. Well, the record is a little misleading. Tremendous starting and relief pitching have kept the Cubs moving forward while the offense continues to sputter.

We talk about the last week in Cubs baseball, focusing on the series with the Marlins series.

The Donn Roach era MIGHT be over as the Cubs add Clayton Richard. It’s hard to say what Richard’s future with the Cubs is, but he performed well on Saturday night in the Cubs 7-1 win over the Marlins.

We have a number of listener email to read and we discuss various topics that they bring up. Kurt gives us his Scary Stat of the Week and we read a handful of internet muscle flexes.

Direct download: Episode_734.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:06pm CDT

On this week’s episode, we discuss our joy that the Cubs’ 5-game losing streak is over, but we don’t believe one win (by a 1-0 score) is enough to convince us the Cubs have turned the corner and have worked past the issues that led to a 5-game losing streak.

Although Kurt’s not on the episode, we share some scary stats, several bad scary stats and we actually have a couple of good scary stats from the bullpen to share.

Jorge Soler is rehabbing in Iowa and although (in two games) he hasn’t lit the world on fire offensively, his production at the plate is probably not the most important thing to pay attention to. After recovering from an ankle issue, the important thing is his physical confidence.

Tomorrow starts the International Free Agency signing period. We talk about the Cubs recent history with these signings and we talk about what they might do this season.

Direct download: Episode_733.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 9:12pm CDT

Welcome to the 329th episode of The Ivy Envy Podcast. It wasn’t a great week for Cubs fans. After taking the first two games in their series with the Dodgers (against the #1 and #2 starters), the Cubs dropped the last two games in the Dodgers series and then lost the first two games in their series against the Cardinals.

We talk about some of the things that have stood out to us in the last week, including the luck of the Cardinals and our disgust in their success. We talk about some injuries, including Jacob Turner being shut down.

We have several listener questions to answer, Kurt gives us his Scary Stat of the Week and we read a few internet muscle flexes.

Direct download: Episode_732.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:44pm CDT

Jeremy Null and Cael Brockmeyer Interviews – Episode 7.31

TALK (2)On this week’s mid-week episode of the podcast, we have a few player interviews for you.

Jeremy Null
In this year’s Midwest League All-Star Game, Jeremy Null was named the game’s MVP. In the first half of the 2015 season, Null started 12 games and he had a 6-2 record. In 65 2/3 innings, he has 48 strikeouts and just 4 walks.

Cael Brockmeyer
Brockmeyer also represented South Bend and the Cubs organization at the 2015 Midwest League All-Star Game. In the first half of the season, Brockmeyer hit .292/.378/.438 with 5 home runs.

On this episode of the podcast, you’ll hear my conversations with both of these players.

Direct download: Episode_731.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 9:23am CDT

On this week’s episode we talk about the latest Starlin Castro shenanigans and heroics.

We talk about the 17-0 shellacking of the Indians at the hands of the Cubs. The Cubs took their series with the Twins, 2 games to 1. We talk about this series, mainly focusing on Kyle Schwarber.

We answer a handful of listener questions, Kurt gives a Scary Stat of the Week and we read some internet muscle flexes.

 
Direct download: Episode_730.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 9:54pm CDT

On this mid-week episode of the podcast, we have yet another prospect promotion to discuss. Within a few months, Kris Bryant, Addison Russell and now Kyle Schwarber have been promoted to the Cubs.

We talk about Schwarber’s fast-track to the majors, why he will be sent to Iowa at the end of the week, when we may see Schwarber back up with the Cubs and how the Cubs intend to use him in 2015 and beyond.

The Cubs have several players on the disabled list and we talk about the progress of these players and what their time-tables for return are. We briefly discuss the Cardinals hacking topic.

We went to Peoria on Sunday to see the South Bend Cubs and talk about Gleyber Torres’ incredible game.

Direct download: Episode_729.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:26pm CDT

On this week’s episode of the podcast, Andy and Corey are in the same studio and discussing several Cubs topics.

The Cubs are in four-game series with the Reds and because we are recording earlier in the day on Sunday, we can’t talk about the complete series. We do talk about the things that have stood out to us in the first 3 games of the series.

We have several meet-ups and events scheduled this summer and we run through them. You can find information on our annual weekend at the lake here – 2015 Ivy Envy Weekend at the Lake.

We answer a few listener questions. We talk about what the Cubs might get in return for Jonathan Papelbon. We also talk about why the Cubs would need to improve the bullpen. Michael from Colorado floats an idea for the #5 spot in the rotation. Chris Archer is good and used to be a Cub. Would there be a place for Ryne Sandberg in the organization? We talk about what three players we’d like to see the Cubs call up and send down.

Rafael from Brazil emails in his disappointing social experience when he was surrounded with Cubs fans. We talk about the idea of catchers trying to distract hitters through “sledging”. And we talk eye black.

 
Direct download: Episode_728.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:55pm CDT

On this episode of The Ivy Envy Podcast, we get caught up on the last few eventful days for the Chicago Cubs.

The Cubs signed free agent reliever, Rafael Soriano. We discuss the terms of this deal, why Soriano was still an available free agent and how we might see the Cubs use him this season.

The Cubs have made their selections in the 2015 draft. We talk about their first few picks and then comment on the overall strategy the Cubs took with the 2015 MLB draft.

Jacob Turner starts his rehab stint in an attempt to return to the Cubs 25-man roster. This gives us the opportunity to discuss his future with the Cubs and where he might fit in with this 2015 team.

We have a few listener emails, including a discussion on David Ross, concern over Jon Lester, the Cubs playing up/down to their competition and a new team stat that heavily favors the Cubs.

Direct download: Episode_727.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 9:37pm CDT

On this, the 323rd episode of The Ivy Envy Podcast, we share our experience at our meet-up at Saturday night’s Iowa Cubs game. We saw a terrible outing by Carlos Pimentel and a spectacular #BaezBomb. Then a different #BaezBomb dropped today and we talk about the incredibly poor timing of his injury.

Chris Denorfia is back from the DL and his first game back was a great one. We talk about what the addition of Denorfia means for the bench depth for the Cubs, especially heading into a few series at American League ballparks.

We talk about Junior Lake’s shushing of the Marlins dugout and share our thoughts on this type of behavior. Derrick calls in with an anti-Castro rebuttal. He raises a lot of good points and we meet in the middle on a few things.

We answer several listener questions. Kurt gives his scary stat of the week and we read a few internet muscle flexes.

 
Direct download: Episode_726.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:42pm CDT

On this mid-week episode of the podcast, Corey and Andy discuss this week’s events surrounding the Cubs/Marlins series. Jorge Soler was placed on the Disabled List and Mike Baxter was called back up to the Cubs. Kris Bryant was named the NL Rookie of the Month for the month of May.

We discuss Addison Russell’s TOOTBLAN in the second game of the Cubs series with the Marlins. It looked like the Cubs would have the bases loaded with 1 out in the 9th inning, but instead they had runners on 1st and 3rd with two outs and the game ended with a Miguel Montero strikeout. That night, #wewerenotgood.

Javier Baez is playing some of his best baseball in the Cubs organization and with American League games coming up, it appears the timing may be right for Javy to make an appearance with the Cubs.

We got a few questions from listeners. We’ll talk about Starlin’s slo-mo home run trot and again talk about all of the Castro-hate.

Direct download: Episode_725.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:06pm CDT

As we wrap up the month of May and head into June, we discuss our thoughts on where this team is. This last week was not especially positive, but we still find positives to take away from it.

The MLB trade rumors are starting to fly around. The last couple of seasons, the Cubs were involved with a lot of rumors because they were sellers. We’re already seeing rumors about the Cubs’ interest in certain players, mainly Zobrist and Soriano. We discuss these potential trades.

Carl Edwards Jr. was promoted from Double-A Tennessee to Triple-A Iowa and it sure appears that Edwards is on the fast track to the Cubs bullpen.

We answer several listener questions on various topics, including where we came up with the name “Ivy Envy”. Kurt gives us a scary stat of the week…one that is especially scary considering how much the Cubs have used their bench this season.

We wrap up the episode with some Internet Muscle Flexes. One of which is so bad, the person is awarded the “Asshat of the Week”.

This upcoming Saturday night is our Iowa Cubs Meet-up. If you’d like to join us, email corey@ivyenvy.com or tweet at @IvyEnvy. We’ll be meeting at El Bait Shop (near Principal Park in Des Moines) at around 3pm. On-field batting practice? Dairy Night? We’re there.

Direct download: Episode_724.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:45pm CDT

On this mid-week episode of the Ivy Envy Podcast, we’re talking about the first few games in the Cubs series with the Nationals.

The Cubs have played several 1-run games this season, winning quite a few of them. We talk about all of the close games that the Cubs are playing against good competition.

Kris Bryant hit a home run off the new video board in left-center field. We weren’t optimistic about a Cubs player accomplishing that in our season prediction episode.

The back end of the rotation has performed very well lately. Wada and Hendricks have both stepped up with good outings, right when the Cubs needed some stability in that part of the rotation.

We also talk about Jason McLeod’s recent comments on Javier Baez and Kyle Schwarber.

Direct download: Episode_723.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:17pm CDT

On this, the 319th episode of The Ivy Envy Podcast. This week, the Cubs went 3-3 on their road trip out west which included series with San Diego and Arizona.

We talk about the last week in Cubs baseball, focusing on some good pitching out of the back end of the bullpen from Kyle Hendricks and Tsoyushi Wada. We also talk about Anthony Rizzo and his emergence as the leader of this team. Chris Coghlan has had a rough spring. Our opinions on Coghlan are mixed.

We answer several listener questions and many topics. We discuss: Pedro Strop, the Cubs plan in the 2015 MLB draft, Addison Russell’s bat grip, adult stuff causing Chris to miss Kris Bryant home runs, Baez/Vogelbach rumors, the Cubs broadcasters, whether or not the Cubs will make a move for a pitcher later in the season, finding a team Cubs fans and Cardinals fans can agree on, the level of disgust we feel losing a series to the Diamondbacks, Kris Bryant’s mohawk mullet and finger-licking, the 2015 Ivy Envy Bus Trip, and the dreaminess of the 2015 Cubs.

Direct download: Episode_722.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:56pm CDT

We only have one Cubs game to talk about on this mid-week episode of the podcast…so we don’t! The Cubs had an off-day on Monday and are playing late games on the west coast. This episode was recorded before the Cubs/Padres game on Wednesday night.

Since we don’t have a lot of game action to talk about on this episode, we instead focus on the prospects. Since we are a month and a half into the season, we look at how the top 10 prospects in the Cubs system are doing this season.

 
Direct download: Episode_721.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 9:57pm CDT

It’s been quite a week in Chicago Cubs baseball. We start things off by talking about some of the events that led to a six-game winning streak. Some are good baseball and some are flukey plays.

We can’t go an episode without drooling over Kris Bryant, so of course we do that. The Cubs have made several roster moves recently, including sending Travis Wood to the bullpen. We run through the significant moves.

We received several listener questions and we go through all of those. Kurt gives us a (good) scary stat of the week and we read some internet muscle flexes.

 
Direct download: Episode_720.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:46pm CDT

On this mid-week episode of the podcast, Andy and Corey comment on the first few games of the Cubs series with the Mets at Wrigley.

We spend a healthy amount of time talking about Kris Bryant’s play, especially in Tuesday night’s game. Jon Lester has a good outing and Jake Arrieta makes Corey look like he actually knows what he’s talking about.

We also talk about the back end of the rotation and how any long winning streak is going to require the #4 and #5 spots in the rotation to provide a little more.

We answer a voicemail question from Josh in New Jersey. Josh asks about the rumored trade talks between the Cubs and Mets. We discourage you from reading too much into it…then we read too much into it.

Sean asks a question about closers in non-save situations. Michael asks about the Cubs hitting in the 7th inning and later.

If you have not yet filled out one of our listener surveys, we can finish this campaign with one final push. Please go to http://ivyenvy.com/survey. This should not take you more than 30 seconds and we’d really appreciate it.

Direct download: Episode_719.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:09pm CDT

On this, the 315th episode of The Ivy Envy Podcast, we talk about the last of the Cardinals series and the entire Cubs series with the Brewers. You can’t have a discussion about the last few weeks in Cubs baseball without spending a lot of time talking about the bullpen.

We start things off by talking about hearing the guys on Effectively Wild calling the Cubs “bulletproof”. Does this team feel bulletproof to you? Does it feel weird to have anyone refer to the Cubs as bulletproof?

Five years ago, Starlin Castro was called up and made his MLB debut. Lots of fans are down on Castro and we look back at the first five years of his career and share our opinions on Castro.

Jake Arrieta has had two rough games in a row. After looking so masterful last year and early on this year, that could make one a bit nervous. Corey does his best to calm those nerves and he has an explanation of what went wrong in those two games and why the results of those two games will not become the norm.

We have several listener questions to read though.

If you’d like to help support Ivy Envy and help us continue producing content with this podcast andThe Daily Northside Recap, check out our Patreon campaign.

 
Direct download: Episode_718.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:05pm CDT

On this episode of The Ivy Envy Podcast, we’re talking about the first few games of this Cubs/Cardinals series in St. Louis. We get a bit distracted early in this episode when this happened.

We talk about the highlights and lowlights of the first few games in the series. Corey is significantly more optimistic than some of the fans that are freaking out with the Cubs dropping the first two games. There are a lot of positives to take away and we discuss those.

The Cubs have made several roster moves recently and we discuss some of those. We’re a month into the season, so it’s time to start voting for the All Star Game. Corey gives you his hot take on fan voting, the timing of all of this and the hashtags.

Direct download: Episode_717.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:39pm CDT

The early season schedule for the Cubs is very NL Central heavy. On this episode of The Ivy Envy Podcast, we talk about how they have fared so far against the teams in their division. This last series with the Brewers has left a bit of a sour taste in our mouths, but they are still playing the division pretty tough. For instance, the Cubs were dominated by the Pirates last year, but they are playing them tough this year.

The Cubs have a huge hurdle ahead of them in the Cardinals this week. The two teams square off for a 4-game series in St. Louis. As good as the Cubs have been playing, they are losing ground on the Cardinals and these head-to-head games are important to win.

Kris Bryant and Addison Russell have been up for a few weeks now and without being too reactionary, we look at how they’re doing. It’s obviously a small sample size, but both of these guys are doing things well in certain areas and then struggling in others.

Jon Lester had a second strong outing, that makes two in a row and it appears as though that dead arm is coming back to life. His start on Friday was very good and it’s nice seeing the Cubs get the production they expected from Lester.

We answer several listener questions. One of the questions came from Jeremy from Phoenix. I talked about the anti-bullying comic book that he’s a part of. If you’re interested in this for a child in your life, check it out here: http://northwestpress.com/shop/rise-comics-against-bullying-1/

Kurt gives us his Scary Stat of the Week and we read some internet muscle flexes.

Our iOS app is live! The Ivy Envy app is completely free. Check it out and download it here.

This app, our 2nd show every week and The Daily Northside Recap was made possible by listener support through Patreon. If you would like to invest in Ivy Envy, you can do so by going toPatreon.com/IvyEnvy

Direct download: Episode_716.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:44pm CDT

On this episode of The Ivy Envy Podcast, I talk with Chris Hagstrom of the South Bend Cubs.

The Chicago Cubs moved their Midwest League affiliate to South Bend from Kane County in this last off-season. Chris talks about what attracted the Cubs to South Bend. South Bend has done an excellent job with branding and their logos. Chris explains the thought that went into some of this development.

Chris also describes some of the really creative things South Bend is doing with infographics to share in-game information with fans through their social channels.

We also get into the 2015 South Bend Cubs. Gleyber Torres is the highest ranked prospect with the Cubs here to start the season. Chris also talks about the phenomenal start that Cael Brockmeyer has had with South Bend this season.

@SBCubs on Twitter
Facebook.com/SouthBendCubs
@SBCubs on Instagram

Direct download: Episode_715.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:27pm CDT

On this, the 311th episode of The Ivy Envy Podcast, we start things off by talking about the 4-2 road trip the Cubs have just finished.

Many of these games were close, half of them were 1-run games. We have a strange and alien feeling during these close games. It’s something called confidence. We discuss the positives and negatives of these close games.

Fans are having fun watching this team and it’s easy to see that the players are having fun, too. Not only can we see the chemistry on the field, but Twitter has allowed players to communicate with fans and at the same time, display their excitement about the team. #wearegood

We also answer lots of listener questions on these 2015 Cubs.

Direct download: Episode_714.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:31pm CDT

In just a matter of a few days, the Cubs have called up their top two prospects. Late last week, it was Kris Bryant and then late on Monday, the Cubs called up Addison Russell to join the club on Tuesday.

On this episode, we’ll talk about how bad we’ve been at predicting when the front office will call up prospects.

We look at how this team will line up defensively and how the pieces will fit together. We also take the opportunity to (again) evaluate this team and reconsider our expectations for the 2015 Cubs.

 
Direct download: Episode_713.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:46pm CDT

Welcome to the 309th episode of The Ivy Envy Podcast.

Kris Bryant…folks! The Cubs called Kris Bryant up right at the deadline to hold the extra year of control and Wrigley Field was buzzing this weekend. Bryant looked out-matched in his first game and then recovered in his second game by seeing a lot of pitches, working counts and ultimately taking walks.

On this episode, we talk about the Kris Bryant call-up, including the timing and the causes that led to it happening when it did. We also discuss what this means for the 2015 season. At the end of series with the Padres, the Cubs sit a game over .500 and the line-up looks pretty nice. What will the rest of the season look like?

Addison Russell is next in line and we walk about how he’s doing in Iowa and when we might see him in Chicago.

The Cubs are facing quite a few injuries right now and it’s having a pretty big impact on the team, specifically the bullpen. We comment on this last week in Cubs baseball.

We answer a listener question, read some internet muscle flexes and Kurt gives us a Scary Stat of the Week.

Click here to check out our Patreon campaign.

Direct download: Episode__712.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:21pm CDT

On this week’s episode of The Ivy Envy Podcast, we have discussion with Nathan Barnett of the Myrtle Beach Pelicans for you.

Myrtle Beach joined the #CubsFamily in the off-season and this is our opportunity to get to know Nathan and the Pelicans.

You can follow the Pelicans on:
Twitter – @PelicanBaseball
Facebook –https://www.facebook.com/myrtlebeachpelicans
Instagram – @PelicansBaseball

 
Direct download: Episode_711.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:20pm CDT

IyvEnvy_Color_blogpodcastWhile the Cubs have only played one game since our last episode, we have several Cubs topics to discuss. We talk about the disappointing start to the series in Colorado the Cubs inability to hit with runners in scoring position.

We answer several listener questions, give a Scary Stat of the Week and read some internet muscle flexes.

Direct download: Episode_710.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:20am CDT

In our first mid-week episode, we talk about the first two games of the 2015 season.

The Cubs dropped the Opening Night game to the Cardinals. We talk about Jon Lester's performance and the national dialogue on his unwillingness/inability to throw to 1st base. The Cubs managed to get runners on base, but just couldn't knock anyone in. They finished the game 0-13 with runners in scoring position. We also can't avoid talking about bathroom-gate.

Tuesday's night's Cubs/Cardinals game was canceled due to weather.

Wednesday's game was more pleasurable for Cubs fans. Strong pitching performances by Jake Arrieta and Lance Lynn kept the offensive production down, but the Cubs managed to capitalize on Cardinals mistakes and win the game 2-0. The bullpen has looked very strong in the first two games already.

The Opening Day rosters are set for the minor league teams in the Cubs organization. We go through and highlight some of the most interesting names on each team.

The photo caption contest returns. Here is the photo and listen to the episode to hear the entries and the winner.
4:8:15 Photo Caption

Direct download: Episode_709.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:29pm CDT

The 2015 MLB season is here and we’re making our predictions on the 2015 Chicago Cubs.

We are running a sale on our t-shirts. Go to IvyEnvy.com/store and use the coupon code “2015” to save 20%.

This week starts up our 2nd weekly episode. It will be recorded on Wednesday evenings and available for your commute on Thursday mornings. The Daily Northside Recap also kicks off this week. You can subscribe in iTunes or Stitcher or listen at http://dailynorthsiderecap.com.

We had several listeners send us the topics they would like to predict. We’d love to hear your predictions. Leave a comment with the number of games the Cubs will win in 2015, or leave your predictions for every category. Here they are:

1. Date for Kris Bryant call-up.
2. Kris Bryant HR. Over/under – 27
3. Bryant HR off the new jumbotron. Over/under – 5.5
4. MLB games in 2015 played by Javier Baez – 130
5. How many runners Baez will strand on base this season.
6. Addison Russell’s call-up. Before or after September 1.
7. First player to hit a HR off the new scoreboard in LF.
8. Number of Cubs HRs to hit the new jumbotron.
9. Number of Cubs All-Stars. Over/under is 2.
10. Number of Cubs closers. Over/under is 4.
11. Cubs extra-innings wins. Over/under is 3.
12. Number of pitchers used in 2015. Over/under is 24.
13. Hector Rondon saves. Over/under is 30.
14. Total Ivy Envy iTunes reviews.
15. How many no-hitters Arrieta takes into the 7th or later. Over/under is 4.
16. Positions played by Alcantara. Over/under is 4.5
17. Number of times Maddon uses a pitcher as a pinch hitter. Over/under is 19.5.
18. Number of players to hit 25 man roster this year. Over/under 39.5.
19. Number of Edwin Jackson starts.
20. Which number will be higher: David Ross HRs or Edwin Jackson starts.
21. Starlin Castro batting average. Over/under is .290
22. Number of Anthony Rizzo HRs. Over/under is 30.
23. Who leads the 2015 Chicago Cubs in HRs?
24. Miguel Montero WAR for 2015. Over/under is 3.5.
25. Number of times Jon Lester throws to first base.
26. Number of ejections for Joe Maddon. Over/under is 2.5
27. Dugout hot feet. Over/Under is 18.5.
28. Number of bandwagon jumpers.
29. Total regular season Cubs wins in 2015.

Direct download: Episode_708.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 7:27am CDT

Thanks for listening to the 304th episode of The Ivy Envy Podcast. Opening Night is just one week away. Cubs fans are more than ready for the 2015 season, but unfortunately Wrigley Field is not.

On this week’s episode, we talk with Pat Nagle, who is one of the co-hosts of The Wrigleyville Nation Podcast. Pat is a Wrigleyville resident and describes what Wrigley Field and the neighborhood looks like a week before Opening Night. Pat also talks about what your Wrigley experience may be like if you plan to attend a Cubs game this season.

This is an interesting conversation because not only is Pat a Wrigleyville resident, but also a season-ticket holder and he has a strong grasp of neighborhood politics and the relationship between the Cubs and the neighborhood.

As Spring Training wraps up, there isn’t much up in the air as far as roster spots go, but two players and assignments that are very much in the general baseball discussion. Where will Javier Baez and Kris Bryant start 2015. Kris Bryant’s assignment seems very clear and although Baez has not played particularly well in Spring Training, it looks like he will most likely start with the Cubs.

Edwin Jackson is lost on and off the field. That’s about all that needs to be said about him.

If you are in the area and would like to watch the Cubs/Cardinals Opening Night game with us at Duffy’s in Galesburg, here is the Facebook event with the information.

Last week, we talked about the meet-up we will be doing at an Iowa Cubs game. We have changed the date to June 6th. We will be sharing more information on this event and other events this 2015 season over the next few weeks.

Direct download: Episode_707.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:34pm CDT

Thanks for downloading this week’s episode of The Ivy Envy Podcast. We return from Spring Training and share what we saw during the six games in five games and at the backfields.

We start things off by discussing the topic all Cubs fans are talking about right now, Kris Bryant. We look at the comments others have made about the situation, from Scott Boras to Theo Epstein to the media to Bryant, himself. There are a lot of angles to look at, but our opinions haven’t changed and all signs point to the Cubs starting Kris Bryant 2015 in Iowa.

We spend most of this episode talking about things we saw at Spring Training. Between the regular games, the B-game, the backfields and spending a game in the broadcast booth, producing the Cubs.com broadcast with Mick Gillispie and Len Kasper, we have a lot to talk about.

Direct download: Episode_706.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:00pm CDT

On Wednesday, we were invited to serve as audio engineers for the Cubs broadcast with Mick Gillispie and Len Kasper. It was an incredible experience and we will talk about it on the next episode of The Ivy Envy Podcast.

After the braodcast was finished, we had the opportunity to interview Mick Gillispie. In addition to being one of the Spring Training voices of Cubs baseball, he’s also the broadcaster for the Cubs Double-A affiliate, the Tennessee Smokies.

We think you will enjoy this opportunity to get to know Mick a little better. Give him a follow on Twitter – @BroadcasterMick and listen to Mick broadcast the Smokies game on the MiLB mobile app, the TuneIn app or on MiLB.tv.

Direct download: Episode_705.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:20am CDT

On Tuesday, we had the opportunity to talk with the public address announcer for Cubs home Spring Training games, Tim Sheridan.

We have had Tim on the podcast several times and he’s one of our favorite people to interview for Ivy Envy.

We met Tim and his wife after Tuesday’s Cubs at a Sloan Park-area establishment for this conversation.

Tim talks about his personal public addressing style, the benefits of the new Spring Training facility on the organization and he shares some thoughts on Cubs players and the 2015 team.

 
Direct download: Episode_704.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:22am CDT

Welcome to the 300th episode of The Ivy Envy Podcast. After 26 non-stop hours in a Toyota Corolla, Corey and Andy have arrived in Arizona for the Cubs Spring Training.

This is the first time we have been to Sloan Park and we talk about our impressions of the facility and what we saw both on the back fields and in the Spring Training game vs. the Reds today.

In the off-seasons, we try to implement changes and new things with IvyEnvy.com and The Ivy Envy Podcast. We have three items to share with you on the this episode.

We will be at Spring Training through Thursday evening. Follow us on Twitter and Instagram for updates, photos and videos.

 
Direct download: Episode_703.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:09am CDT

Welcome to the 299th episode of The Ivy Envy Podcast...that is the PODCAST AWARDS FINALIST, Ivy Envy Podcast. That's right, all of you that nominated us in the Podcast Awards landed us in the finals.

We are up against some pretty tough competition: Dan Patrick, Matthew Berry of ESPN, Chris Jericho and Steve Austin. Voting is now underway and you can vote at PodcastAwards.com. You can vote once a day until May 24th. The Podcast Awards ceremony is in Las Vegas in April.

We have on-the-field baseball to talk about for the first time in months. On this episode, we talk about some of the individual performances that have caught our attention since Spring Training games started on Thursday.

We have some news for those listeners in our hometown Quad Cities. WQAD Channel 8 will be broadcasting 45 games (the WGN-9 broadcasts) on MyTV 8.3.

We also spend a chunk of this episode spelling out what you will get from us next week, from Spring Training. Episode #300, the Spring Training meet-up, Meerkat and more. It will be a good week in Arizona. Be sure to follow us on Twitter - @IvyEnvy as we will funnel everything through there at Spring Training.

If you'd like to support this podcast, you can do so by pledging on our Patreon campaign.

Direct download: Episode_702.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:09pm CDT

Welcome to the 7th season of The Ivy Envy Podcast. While we were excited about the Cubs in 2009, it’s been a dry spell since and I think we’re heading into the most interesting Cubs season since we started the podcast.

This is the 298th episode of The Ivy Envy Podcast. We’ll be recording #300 in two weeks when Andy and I are in Arizona for Spring Training. We’ll be there March 14-20, with our official meet-up on Thursday the 19th for the Cubs @ Diamondbacks game. If you would like to attend the meet-up, email corey@ivyenvy.com for information. We suggest purchasing the general admission lawn seats.

On this week’s episode, we are previewing the 2015 Cubs Spring Training. We cover a lot of topics as we each share the top three storylines that most interest us.

Kurt:

  • Kris Bryant
  • Back end of the starting rotation
  • Trades

Andy:

  • Joe Maddon and Coaching Staff
  • Addison Russell
  • Dexter Fowler

Corey:

  • 2ndbase situation
  • Edwin Jackson
  • Injuries

 
Click here for information on the Ivy Envy Cubs Bus Trip.
Click here to support The Ivy Envy Podcast through Patreon.

 
Direct download: Episode_701.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 4:25pm CDT

Welcome to the last episode of our sixth season of podcasting on the Cubs, which is our 296thepisode. If you are looking for our usual Cubs talk, you won’t find much of it on this episode. The three of us have the opportunity to record in the same room about twice a year, so you’ll have to excuse the “hangout” vibe this episode has.

Michael from Galesburg (and The Awesome 80’s Podcast) joins us and earns the title of the official Ivy Envy Regular Guest.

If you’d like to hear the first baseball card episode we recorded, all the way back in 2009 (our 1st season of podcasting), you can listen to it here: Podcast #26 – Baseball Cards

Prior to the recording of this episode, we got this tweet.


 

 

If you’d like to watch the video of this episode and see most of the cards we talk about, here it is:

 

You can support The Ivy Envy Podcast through Patreon for just $1/month. Check out the Patreon campaign and perks at http://patreon.com/ivyenvy

Direct download: Episode_659.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 2:29pm CDT

Welcome to the 295th episode of The Ivy Envy Podcast.

Cubs pitchers and catchers report to Spring Training in Mesa this week and we start the build-up to Cubs Spring Training by discussing the list of non-roster invitees. We also tell you where you'll be able to hear and watch Cubs Spring Training games this year.

The Cubs battle with the rooftop continues and Kurt gets us up to speed with the latest developments in the story.

We also answer several listener questions on various topics:

  • MLB.tv vs. MLB Extra Innings
  • Tom Tango
  • Which is better at Wrigley: Cubs more likely to win or a game vs. a rival?
  • Shrinking strike zone
  • Cole Hamels or free agent next off-season?
  • Chances a Cubs rookie wins 2015 NL Rookie of the Year
  • Last time we had this much hope for the Cubs headed into Spring Training.
  • Lester gets a hit vs Baez walks 50 times?
Direct download: Episode_658.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:57pm CDT

Welcome to the 294th episode of The Ivy Envy Podcast.

This week, we have an interview I did with Sahadev Sharma of Baseball Prospectus. I thoroughly enjoyed this conversation and I think you will too. We touch on several topics in this discussion and Sahadev provides valuable insight.

We start things off by talking about the PECOTA projections and what these projections say the 2015 Cubs could look like. We know that we’ll most likely see Kris Bryant up with the Cubs fairly early in the season. What’s not as clear at this point is when other prospects will get the call and I ask Sahadev if he thinks we may see Addison at Wrigley in some point in 2015.

Joe Maddon will be a management style we’ve never seen before with the Cubs, from his on-the-field philosophies to how he deals with the media and fans. Sahadev talks about the previous two Cubs managers and describes what the team will look like with Maddon at the helm.

Edwin Jackson was the first bigger free-agent this front office signed and things have definitely not gone as planned. Sahadev talks about where Jackson’s head is right now and he has a pretty good explanation of what went wrong with Edwin.

Javier Baez’s strikeouts are a big concern right now. For Baez to realize his potential, his strikeout rate needs to significantly drop. If you were looking for the strikeout rate to drop for Baez over winter ball, that didn’t happen. Sahadev does have a good explanation that should make step back from the ledge a bit.

We also look ahead to the 2015 trade deadline and Sahadev predicts what the Cubs mindset will be in regards to selling off prospects if they are in the thick of things later this season.

If you’d like to follow Sahadev on Twitter, you can find him at @SahadevSharma. You can read Sahadev’s written pieces on baseball at Baseball Prospectus

Click here for information on the Ivy Envy Cubs Bus Trip.
Click here to support The Ivy Envy Podcast through Patreon.

Direct download: Episode_657.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 7:39pm CDT

Welcome to the 293rd episode of The Ivy Envy Podcast. Our plan was that this would be an episode with Michael from Galesburg and we were going to talk about baseball cards. Unfortunately, Mother Nature did not work with us and a blizzard shut our plans down. The baseball card episode will be rescheduled, probably later in February.

PECOTA projections are out for the 2015 season. Those projections say the Cubs will end the season with an 82-80 record and miss the playoffs by one game. We talk about those results and the individual player projections to get them to that 82-80 record. Some of the players we discuss are: Jon Lester, Jake Arrieta, Kris Bryant, Javier Baez, Anthony Rizzo, Starlin Castro, Edwin Jackson and more.

In case you didn't know, the Cubs have a highly-touted farm system. I think you've probably heard about this. MLB.com released their Top 100 Prospects list and the Cubs have six players in the top 57. Keith Law also identified the Cubs as the top farm system in baseball. We talk a little about the players on the list and the timing of their impact on the major league team.

Major League Baseball has a new Commissioner and we talk about some of his comments since taking over. This opens up a discussion on the state of the sport of baseball and the issues impacting it's popularity with the youth of today. Do you think the pace and length of games is an issue?

We answer a handful of listener questions and read some Internet Muscle Flexes.

Congrats to Patreon Associate Producer, Matthew Maser for winning the Iowa Cubs Javier Baez t-shirt jersey.
If you'd like to support The Ivy Envy Podcast, check out our Patreon campaign.

General tickets for our 2015 Ivy Envy Cubs Bus Trip go on sale this Friday, February 6th. You can buy tickets here: Ivy Envy Cubs Bus Trip.

Direct download: Episode_656.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:50pm CDT

The Cubs lost a legend this week with the passing of Mr. Cub, Ernie Banks. On this, the 292nd episode of The Ivy Envy Podcast, we talk about Ernie's on-the-field accomplishments and what he meant to Cubs fans after his retirement.

This week, the Cubs traded Luis Valbuena and Dan Straily for Dexter Fowler. We talk about how our opinions of Valbuena changed over the last few years and what the trade means for the outfield and infield for the 2015 Cubs.

We check back in on Javier Baez, who is playing winter ball in Puerto Rico. Baez has not figured out his strikeout issue and his spot on the opening day roster seems to be in question.

We answer several listener questions and read some internet muscle flexes.

If you have not yet nominated Ivy Envy in the sports category of the 10th Annual Podcast Awards, you can do that here - PodcastAwards.com
Check out our Patreon campaign here - Patreon.com/IvyEnvy

Direct download: Episode_655.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:07pm CDT

Last year, our podcast was a finalist in the Sports category of the 9th Annual Podcast Awards. It was incredible to represent our podcast and listeners at the Podcast Awards ceremony in Las Vegas last January. We lost to ESPN, but it was incredible to be listed next to the biggest names in sports broadcasting.

The nomination period is underway for the 10th Annual Podcast Awards. Nominating us is very easy and we'd really appreciate it if you took the 30 seconds to do it.

Simply go to http://podcastawards.com and enter "Ivy Envy" in the show name at the show URL is http://ivyenvy.com.

We would also love it if you supported the following podcasts by writing them into the nomination form.

Mommy's Cocktail Hour
http://mommyscocktailhour.com
Food And Drink Category

QC STEP Podcast
http://qcstep.com
Education Category

I Hate Critics Podcast
http://ihatecritics.net
Movies/Film Category

Direct download: IvyEnvy_Podcast_Awards.mp4
Category:general -- posted at: 8:19pm CDT

Welcome to the 291st episode of The Ivy Envy Podcast. This episode is unlike any other episode of our podcast in that it was recorded on an Amtrak train.

On this episode, Andy and Corey recap Cubs Convention 2015. From the opening ceremony to the final session, we have you covered.
Sessions described:

  • Opening Ceremony
  • Ricketts Family Forum
  • Meet Cubs Baseball Management
  • Joe Maddon and His Coaching Staff
  • Cubs Business Operations Update
  • #CubsSocial
  • Down on the Farm

There were lots of topics covered in those sessions and we discuss many of them.
If you’d like to help support The Ivy Envy Podcast, you can do so through our Patreon campaign.

Direct download: Episode_654.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:50pm CDT

Welcome to the 290th episode of The Ivy Envy Podcast. You could say that Cubs Convention signals the beginning of the upcoming baseball season and the event is this upcoming weekend. Andy and Corey will be going to Chicago for the convention and we talk about what we’re expecting this weekend. If you aren’t able to attend the convention, follow us on Twitter –@IvyEnvy. If you don’t use Twitter, the live stream of our Twitter feed will be displayed in the first post displayed on our website, IvyEnvy.com

Spring Training is also coming up and we’ve decided that we will be doing a meet-up at the Cubs @ Diamondbacks game on March 19th. If you will be at Spring Training and would like to join us, you can purchase the general admission lawn seats from Diamondbacks.com.

More concrete details on the TV broadcasts of Cubs games. Kurt shares the latest info, which is exactly what we speculated would happen. There’s a lot of concern with Cubs fans in the midwest outside of Chicagoland. If you are outside Chicago and worried that you won’t have access to Cubs games on tv in 2015 and beyond, listen to this episode to hear how you can do your part in making these broadcasts available in your local market.
If you are in Indiana, DeRose has started this Facebook group: Let Indiana Watch the Chicago Cubs

The Cubs added a veteran right-handed hitting platoonable outfielder in Chris Denorfia. The real debate in this conversation is whether his nickname should be Deno or Norf. Either way, you need to look at him. He’s the sickest playerrr.

 

Sporting News created a little buzz this week by predicting that the Cubs will win the World Series in 2015. We comment on this and call it what it is.

We have several questions from listeners, including conversations such as whether or not there’s a nickname that rhymes with Lester that isn’t “molester”. There’s a question about Samardzija’s performances later in the season. We talk about the future of Welington Castillo and what the Cubs may get in return for their extra catcher. We also compare Cardinals fans and Reds fans.

If you’d like to support this podcast, you can do so at Patreon.com/IvyEnvy

Direct download: Episode_653.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:10pm CDT

We have an interview episode for you this week on the podcast. Harry Pavlidis joins me to talk about pitch framing.

castilloWith the addition of Miguel Montero and the potential departure of Welington Castillo, it’s obvious that pitch framing is important to this front office and there’s nobody better to talk about pitch framing than Harry Pavlidis.

In this discussion we’ll start at the basics….what is pitch framing. We’ll also talk about how this statitstic is measured, it’s value and we’ll talk about how good Miguel Montero is at it and how bad Welington Castillo is at it. And most importantly, what does the change from Montero to Castillo mean for the 2015 Cubs?

Harry is with Baseball Prospectus and Pitch Info and you can follow him on Twitter - @HarryPav

Direct download: Episode_652.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:58pm CDT

On this, the 288th episode of our podcast, we wrap up 2014 by looking back at at the top moments and stories for the Chicago Cubs in the calendar year.

There were many moments and stories we left out and we’d like to hear what you feel are the most important of 2014. Listen to this episode to hear us discuss the following topics:

Andy:
Wrigley Field’s 100th Birthday
Jorge Soler
Jake Arrieta

Corey:
Addison Russell
Javier Baez
Anthony Rizzo

Kurt:
Kris Bryant
Joe Maddon
Jon Lester

Direct download: Episode_651.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:51pm CDT

Welcome to the 287th episode of The Ivy Envy Podcast. The Cubs made several moves this week and we run through them. The most notable of these would be the signing of former Cardinals closer, Jason Motte. The Cubs also signed a back-up catcher that will probably serve as Jon Lester's personal catcher, David Ross.

We announce the winner of the 2015 Cubs Convention passes and read the winning entry. It was very difficult decision and we were blown away by the number and quality of entries.

There are several listener questions to answer, and we try to do just that. Andy wraps up by reading an internet muscle flex.

Direct download: Episode_650.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 7:48pm CDT

On this, the 286th episode of The Ivy Envy Podcast, we spend a good amount of time talking about the changes in the television broadcast of Cubs games that will start with the 2015 season. A lot of Cubs fans have some confusion about these changes. We attempt to explain why these changes are happening and simply, how will we watch the Cubs next year.

There are quite a few players from the Cubs system that are playing in the winter leagues. Andy runs through some of the more notable names and then we discuss the purpose of their involvement in the leagues and what we'd like to see as far as development goes from these players.

We talk about the changes in the Wrigley renovations. One of the seven signs has been removed from the plans and there have been adjustments to other signs. The reason for these changes is to preserve federal tax credits through a National Register of Historic Places designation through the National Park Services.

We answer several listener questions and read some internet muscle flexes.

Thanks to Danny Rockett for letting us play "Lesterday" at the end of the episode.

If you'd like to help support our podcast, check out our Patreon campaign.

Direct download: Episode_649.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:23pm CDT

Welcome to the 285th episode of The Ivy Envy Podcast. Holy cow, the Cubs gave us a ton to talk about this week. First off…Jon Lester! The Cubs were able to sign the free agent to the largest contract in organization history. We talk about Lester and what his signing means for this off-season and the 2015 season. What it boils down to is that the Cubs are now interesting at the major league level.

The Cubs also signed Jason Hammel, after trading him to A’s with Jeff Samardzija in July. The Cubs and Hammel must have liked what they saw in each other as they worked out a 2-year deal.

The Cubs added an All-Star catcher in Miguel Montero. After missing out on Russell Martin, they went out and got the catcher that is arguably the best pitch framer in baseball. What does this mean for Welington Castillo? And how bad is he, really?

Kurt runs through the players whose contracts were tendered and non-tendered by the Cubs. Corey reads some internet muscle flexes that left Andy and Kurt speechless.

We have two Cubs Convention passes to give away, courtesy of the Chicago Cubs. For a chance to win these two convention passes, email corey@ivyenvy.com with your answer to this question – Who would you bring with you to Cubs Convention and why?

We didn’t have time to read the captions for this week’s caption contest. You can click on the image below and tell us which caption you liked most.

Direct download: Episode_648.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:59pm CDT

On Tuesday, I had the opportunity to participate in the first ever Cubs Bloggers Forum with Crane Kenney. On this week’s episode, we talk about the event. We start off by commenting on the fact the Cubs held this event. The media landscape is changing and the Cubs fully understand the role bloggers, podcasters and other “alternative media” people fill. The beat reporters often inform us of news, but the conversation continues with us.

Photo Nov 25, 2 06 47 PM

There were several business-related topics covered in the 70 minutes we had with Crane Kenney. On this episode of the podcast, we cover many of these topics. The Cubs told us that it’s likely the bleacher renovations will not be completed for Opening Day (Night). There are a few reasons for this and we discuss those reasons. We talk about the triangle lot and how it will be used. Rooftops were discussed, from the last deal Kenney made with the rooftops to the Ricketts family potentially buying rooftops.

Media Rights were brought up. We talk about what may happen with the games that would have been (and still might be) broadcast on WGN America. We also share some encouraging news about streaming MLB content and the frustrating blackouts. We also share what Kenney described are three potiential options for the Cubs and media rights after 2020.

Kenny also addressed the idea of the Ricketts family being cheap and not spending money with the Cubs. He also shared his opinion of Theo, Jed and the rest of the baseball side of the front office.

Here’s a link to the Jamberry flash sale.
We have t-shirts for sale. Use the coupon code “MONDAY” at http://iveyvny.com/store to purchase this beautiful shirt:

IvyEnvyShirt

Direct download: Episode_647.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:59am CDT