The Rundown: Glad Opening Night’s Out of the Way, Fowler to Receive Ring at Wrigley, New CI Spokesmodel

It was probably just the stress of moving that had me twisted in a psychological knot, but I was decidedly off-kilter yesterday. I couldn’t write, couldn’t think straight, was short with people. Surely it wasn’t from the lead-up to Opening Night? I don’t know, maybe.

To be honest, Sunday’s Game 1 had about as clinical a feel as I can remember, watching it as I was with one eye on my phone and the other putting together postgame player summaries. When Randy Grichuk strode to the plate in the 9th inning looking every bit like an uncredited extra from the Cobra Kai dojo, I had pretty much given myself over to the inevitability of a loss. And I didn’t care.

By the time the 80’s villain had climbed into his T-top Camaro, perfectly feathered hair still poofing nicely despite still being shower-wet, I was already well into the season finale of The Walking Dead. When I woke this morning, there was a lingering sense of unease that was brushed away like so many eye boogers. Game’s over, move on.

Even so, it’s good to have the off-day to sort of hit the reset button or dry out after the hangover from the previous night’s revelry.

I’ll admit that I did raise a fist and yell out when Willson Contreras went yard, a brief yet welcome reprieve from the gray clouds that hung over both Busch Stadium and my mind. There were moments in the game that helped to support various narratives we’d established in the weeks prior, microcosmic seeds that are only just now beginning to germinate. Now to hope the rain in St. Louis helps them to grow.

Fowler wants to get ring at Wrigley

He traveled to the White House with the Cubs despite having already signed with the Cardinals, so you knew Dexter Fowler would want to pick up his ring at Wrigley. While he won’t be there for the official ceremony, the plan is for the Cubs to have some sort of public display for their former centerfielder at some point this season.

“I’ve been talking to Theo about it,” Fowler told reporters Sunday. “We’ll see. I think it’s probably my first trip back there.”

Fowler is sure to get a warm welcome — though the slide into Addison Russell may have turned the volume down slightly — when he finally comes back to Wrigley on *checks calendar* June 2. Wait, the Cards’ first trip to Chicago doesn’t happen until two months into the season? That’s actually really cool on a couple levels, not the least of which is that I’ll be at the game celebrating my birthday. Perhaps a CI meetup is in order.

Move over Kris Bryant

All the tweets and Facebook posts in the world haven’t helped us sell as many shirts in short order as this guy has. No one reading this has even half as much swagger as he does, but you have all the swag by visiting our shop. All items are 15% off for a limited time.

Solid journalism straight to your phone

If you’re into Chicago sports, which you certainly are to at least some extent, you’ve no doubt heard of The Athletic by now. Boasting a masthead that reads like a who’s who of Chicago sports media personalities, the subscription journalism outfit seeks to provide locally-based content without all the paywalls and pop-ups you’ll find at traditional sites.

Think of it kind of like a blog with more immediate street cred. The kicker is that you do have to subscribe to get full access, though the nominal fee ($39.99 if paid annually or $5.99/month if you go that route) is well worth it. It’s even better for CI readers, since we’ve partnered with The Athletic to get you 15% off the going rate (which makes it $34/year or $5.10/month).

They’ve also got a great app (click here for iOS and here for Android) that has some cool features like the interactive Everyplayer scores and summaries for after each game. A writer provides a score for, well, every player on a 1-5 scale and fans get to provide their own scores as well. I dig it.

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