Wednesday, September 11, 2013

EXTRA: Cook is hardball w/ softball

The Cook County Board had serious issues (cremation instead of burial for the indigent, constitution of the Metra commuter rail board) on its agenda Wednesday.

Yet what was it that seemed to generate the most enthusiasm amongst the officials who represent Illinois’ largest county?

SOFTBALL. OR SHOULD I say a gold-colored cup filled with a ratty-looking, dinged up ball that was put on display as the “trophy” won by the Cook County softball team.

For the past three years, the team consisting of staffers from various county government agencies has played games against other government-inspired teams.

Such as the Illinois governor, the mayor and the City Council of Chicago (separate teams, you wouldn’t expect them to play together?). The city treasurer. Heck, even the Chicago-based staff of the federal government’s General Accounting Office.

County officials passed a resolution declaring themselves the champions for the third straight year of this competition – pointing out that in three seasons, they are undefeated.

AS IN 20-0 since 2011.

Not bad, although I wonder what would happen if Cook County were to take on one of the teams from the Illinois Legislature – where the state Senate and House of Representatives take each other on annually for some of the most intense sporting bragging rights ever claimed.

WHITE: Never could top Ernie Banks
Or if an Illinois secretary of state team containing one-time Chicago Cubs minor leaguer Jesse White himself (who’s more athletic at age 78 than most people are in their prime) were to take on the county ballplayers?

But it seems that the county will keep at their play – county Board President Toni Preckwinkle says she plans to take the field in 2014 along with her colleagues.

ALTHOUGH COUNTY COMMISSIONER Deborah Sims, D-Chicago, said she was skeptical anybody would be willing to play against Cook ever again.

PRECKWINKLE: Wants to play
“I’d advise you not to win so much, or nobody will want to play with you,” she quipped.

And Preckwinkle had the final say; claiming the cup on display at the county board meeting ought to be treated like the Stanley Cup (which goes on tour so the fans can see it, up close).

“Everybody gets this cup for an hour,” she snapped.


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