The 2009 Cubs and Alfonso Soriano.
That's when I could see the future and know it sucked, and when I first truly understood the concept of contract dread.
I mean, it was SO AWESOME when they first signed Soriano, but later...
With a click online I could check the Cubs' team salary and their overall record vs every other team and realize how awful my life was and would continue to be.
And I got it - Jim Hendry had access to the money, saw his opportunity, shot his wad and lost.
After, we were left with the bleakest future, with gigantic contracts owed to players who were shadows of their former selves and not a damn thing could be done about it.
(Alfonso just happens to be the last man standing in that category, btw.)
Anyway, with that in mind, I'm wondering who the "New Cubs" are.
Remember "Brown is the new black" thing?
Which teams have contracts you might think of as Alfonso-like, have tons of cash invested, and seem headed...down.
I'm pretty sure it'll be the Angels in a couple years.
But right now?
Maybe the Red Sox.
The last place Sox are clocking in at $173 million - the third most expensive team in baseball.
Carl Crawford will be making $21 million in 2017.
Or it could be the Phillies?
They're in last too, and at $174 mil they're baseball's second most expensive team.
They're getting old, and Ryan Howard will be making $25 million in 2016.
Of course the big difference is the Sox and Phillies' got their shiny rings.
The Cubs got "Go Cubs Go".
Yeah, the present might be horrible, Cub Fans.
But it seems like we're beginning an upward swing.
Maybe it's time for somebody else to take a little walk in our shoes.