On to Pittsburgh!

Greetings from Chicago. Actually, greetings from Rosemont, or somewhere near there, where Chicago's O'Hare International is located. Maybe you are wondering why I'm writing from Chicago. Or, more likely, maybe you're wondering why I don't just get to the baseball stuff. Either way, hear me out: when you are travelling to Milwaukee, fly into Milwaukee. Some might say that flying into Chicago and driving the hour and 20 minutes north is easier. Well, it's not.

See, the word Milwaukee apparently is derived from an ancient Algonquin word that means "Land of Endless Construction." Seriously, if you are single and lonely and want to date an orange plastic barrell, Milwaukee is your town. So it took a little while to get out of Sausage Town yesterday, then it took a little longer to battle the rush hour traffic between Sausage Town and Chicago, then it took an hour - that's right hour - to get through the toll booth just outside of O'Hare.

So fellow beat writer Ryan Lawrence and I finally rolled into town about 8:30 p.m. We were hoping to catch overtime of the Flyers game. Except overtime of the Flyers game was exactly 48 seconds long. Besides, attempting to find a hockey broadcast on TV could be a professional sports league all by itself. I took a lot of ribbing from militant NHL fans when I cracked on the league in an article a few weeks ago. Truth is, I love playoff hockey. But call me when you can actually find all of your playoff telecasts on real television.

That said. . .

Paul Hagen has an interesting story in today's paper on the apparent trend of young players foresaking some money down the road in order to secure their financial situations today. Like a lot of people, I was shocked that Evan Longoria signed the deal that he did with Tampa Bay. He may potentially leave a lot of $$$$$$$$$$$ on the table by doing so. But he's already set for life, and won't have to "suffer" making under a million the next few years. Chase Utley got more money than Longoria, but I think his deal is going to prove to be club friendly as well.

On to the game stuff:

Pat Burrell has had three straight clutch hits in the late innings of games. Two of them came with two strikes. Two strikes on a hitter is like eight lives on a cat. Heading into the season, Burrell was well under .200 for his career with two strikes against him. Now, he's around .230. Here's the game story.