Friday, April 19, 2019

Rick on the Radio

UPDATE: The podcast can be heard here.

The Mueller Report

I gave up cable news for Lent, and yesterday was probably one of the toughest days of Lent for me. I sooooo wanted to turn on the TV and watch the experts devour the Mueller report. Instead, I followed on twitter and read something called newspapers. Remember those?

By the way, I also read the report, which was on-line and available to anyone who wanted to read it. I wanted to read it badly.

My takeaway: The media has been absolutely correct in virtually everything they have reported about this case. The next time he says "Fake News" realize that he is 100% full of shit.

Also, this is an important point. He fails as Commander in Chief because he still hasn't done anything about Russian (now proven) meddling in our elections. He won't protect us from a foreign adversary because he is hoping they help him again.

Remembering Chet

There were tons of tributes yesterday to Chet Coppock. He was even trending on Twitter.

I know my phone was ringing off the hook. Thanks to WGN Radio, WLS Radio, and the Daily Herald for calling me and allowing me to share some stories about Chet. (The WGN interview is here if you want to hear it)

I thought the Sun Times did a very nice tribute to Chet.

Robert Feder did a nice piece in Chet's own words.

I wrote a tribute to Chet on the Eckhartz Press website too.

Steve Dahl did a nice tribute that featured classic audio of Chet.
Chet appeared on Steve's show just recently--in the closing days of Steve's show on WLS Radio. (That's where this picture was taken.)

He even got a shout out on national television. Michael Wilbon paid tribute on PTI...

(I took that picture of Chet and his girlfriend at WGN Radio last year)

I will say this about yesterday. In his last few years Chet was beginning to feel that people had forgotten him, and he worried what his legacy would be. I don't think in his wildest dreams did he ever think he would receive the kind of outpouring of love that he received.

I hope that he somehow could see it or feel it or know it.

It would have meant the world to him.

Thursday, April 18, 2019

Sad News

Wednesday, April 17, 2019

Free Kicks, Episode 36

EP36: Adam and Rick discuss the great race for this year’s Premier League title (between Man City & Liverpool), and take a quiz about previous down-to-the-wire races.

Listen to it here.

Rick and Bridget 2039

First I have to learn how to dance, but how hard can that be?

Tom Needham

My book "everycubever" is available for pre-order now, and ships on May 1st. It features mini-bios of every Cub who ever played, including today's birthday boy...

~Tom Needham 1879–1926 (Cubs 1909-1914)
Needham was born in Ireland and came to this country as a youngster. Deerfoot, as he was called, joined the Cubs in the midst of their historic run to be the backup catcher to Johnny Kling, and then Jimmy Archer. He even got to bat in the 1910 World Series against the A’s. Deerfoot was known as a good defensive player, but never hit well (career average was .209). He played six seasons with the Cubs, but didn’t quite last long enough to play in the new ballpark. In his last few years with the Cubs Needham was a player/coach. He later became the pitching coach for the White Sox.

It's also Cap Anson's birthday today. If you'd like to read about him, his more lengthy bio can be found today at Just One Bad Century.

CJ Edwards Instagram Posts

MLB is investigating racist instagram posts sent to Cubs pitcher Carl Edwards Jr.

“We were shocked by the racist, profanity-laced social media message sent to Carl Edwards Jr. earlier this month,” said Theo Epstein, Cubs president of baseball operations, in a statement released to The Athletic. “We vehemently condemn the content of the message and are supporting Major League Baseball’s investigation to identify the person responsible.”

When players like Jacque Jones and Milton Bradley complained of racist attacks--I didn't buy it. When Dusty Baker claimed to be the victim of racist attacks--I didn't buy it. I'm starting to change my mind.

This element of Cubs nation is welcome to go root for another team. We don't want to be associated with you.


MTV is doing a convention for reality shows. It's called RealityCon.

Has there ever been a better name for a convention?

Tuesday, April 16, 2019

Tommy Sewell

My book "everycubever" is available for pre-order now! (Ships May 1) It includes a mini-bio of literally every Cub who ever played between 1871-2018, including today's birthday boy...

~Tommy Sewell 1906–1956 (Cubs 1927)
Tommy had exactly one big league at bat. It came on June 21, 1927 at Sportsman Park in St. Louis. Tommy pinch hit for Cubs pitcher Percy Jones in the seventh inning against Cardinals pitcher Flint Rehm. Unfortunately for Tommy, Flint was a 20-game-winner that season. Sewell didn’t get on base and never got another chance in the big leagues. After that he played in the minor leagues for another four years before hanging up his spikes. Tommy couldn’t even brag about his big league experience when he came home to Alabama. His brother Joe was a Hall of Famer, another brother Luke also played in the big leagues, and so did his cousin Rip.

By the way, I tweeted out an abbreviated version of this, and it was my 5000th tweet of all time. Not sure I'll hit another milestone like that. It took me ten years to hit it...

Chicago Radio Ratings

Robert Feder posted all the of the Chicago radio ratings this morning. If you want to look at the daypart breakdowns, click here to read the whole column. (Eric Ferguson is #1 in mornings, Bob Stroud in middays, and Joe Soto-WVAZ in afternoons). Here are the overall ratings...

1. WBBM 780-AM/WCFS 105.9-FM all news, 5.8 (6.1)
2. WTMX 101.9-FM hot adult contemporary, 5.4 (5.5)
3. (tie) WDRV 97.1-FM classic rock, 5.3 (5.1); WVAZ 102.7-FM urban adult contemporary, 5.3 (4.7)
5. WLS 94.7-FM classic hits, 4.5 (3.9)
6. WOJO 105.1-FM Mexican regional, 4.2 (5.0)
7. WLIT 93.9-FM adult contemporary, 3.9 (4.4)
8. WBMX 104.3-FM classic hip hop, 3.6 (3.1)
9. WBEZ 91.5-FM public radio news talk, 3.4 (3.3)
10. WSHE 100.3-FM adult contemporary, 3.2 (3.2)
11. (tie) WXRT 93.1-FM adult album alternative, 3.1 (3.3); WGN 720-AM news talk, 3.1 (3.5)
13. WBBM 96.3-FM Top 40, 3.0 (2.2)
14. (tie) WGCI 107.5-FM urban contemporary, 2.9 (2.7); WKSC 103.5-FM Top 40, 2.9 (2.9)
16. WSCR 670-AM sports talk, 2.8 (3.0)
17. (tie) WUSN 99.5-FM country, 2.6 (3.0); WKQX 101.1-FM alternative rock, 2.6 (2.8); WRME 87.7-FM soft rock oldies, 2.6 (2.6)
20. WLEY 107.9-FM Mexican regional, 2.2 (2.6)
21. WPWX 92.3-FM urban contemporary, 2.1 (2.1)
22. WPPN 106.7-FM Spanish adult contemporary, 1.9 (1.6)
23. WLS 890-AM news talk, 1.7 (1.7)
24. WEBG 95.5-FM country, 1.6 (1.6)
25. WFMT 98.7-FM classical, 1.3 (1.2)
26. (tie) WCKL 97.9-FM contemporary Christian, 1.2 (1.5); WVIV 93.5-FM Spanish contemporary, 1.2 (1.0)
28. WMVP 1000-AM sports talk, 1.1 (1.0)
29. (tie) WERV 95.9-FM classic hits, 0.9 (0.7); WMBI 90.1-FM Christian ministry, 0.9 (1.0)

Monday, April 15, 2019

Ed Bailey

My book "everycubever" is available for pre-order now. It features mini-bios of everyone who ever played for the Cubs, including today's birthday boy...

~Ed Bailey 1931–2007 (Cubs 1965)
Ed was one of the best catchers in the National League in the late 50s and early 60s. He was a five-time All-Star, and a World Series hero during his time with the Cincinnati Reds and San Francisco Giants. One of his personal highlights during those years was when he caught his brother Jim (a pitcher for the Reds in 1959). The Cubs acquired him along with Harvey Kuehnn and Bob Hendley in 1965. He was near the end of his career when he came to the Cubs, but he still played well. He was clearly the best catcher on that 1965 team. The Cubs acquired Randy Hundley the following year, which made Ed expendable. He finished his career with the Angels. (Photo: Topps 1966 baseball card)

When he was with the Reds, he and his teammates appeared on "What's My Line"

Pothole Song

5 years ago today Pothole store owner David Stern released this hit song...

Jackie Robinson

Something to remember...


I'm a big Liverpool supporter in the Premier League, and I kept flipping back and forth between Tiger and the Liverpool game. Lucky I saw the best of both. Mo Salah's goal was one for the ages, and the atmosphere at Anfield was absolutely incredible. This captures it pretty well I think...

Eddie V

From this morning's Robert Feder column...

It didn’t take long for Eddie Volkman to land on his feet. Just days after the sale of northwest suburban classic rocker WFXF 103.9-FM cost him his job as morning personality, the longtime Chicago radio star has been hired by WSSR 96.7-FM, the Alpha Media southwest suburban adult-contemporary station. Starting today, he’ll program Star 96.7 as content manager and double as afternoon host from 2 to 7 p.m. weekdays. Volkman succeeds Scott Childers, who exited the station after 15 years last week. “It’s a shame I won’t be working with my longtime friend Scott Childers,” he said. “We go all the way back to when he was ‘Rich Scott’ doing traffic for us on B96. He has built a solid station here, and it will be an honor to inject some new energy into the operation.” In the latest Nielsen Audio survey, Star 96.7 tied for 36th place with a 0.3 percent share.

(Photo: From the day I appeared on Eddie's podcast a few years ago)

Unfortunately, as you can tell from Eddie's comments above, the move coincided with the firing of Scott Childers. That was referenced in this morning's RAMP newsletter...

The sharp knife of radio strikes again," said Scott Childers, who has exited as PD of Alpha Media's suburban Chicago Hot AC WSSR (Star 96.7)/Joliet, IL after 15 years. As Childers told RAMP, "Ironic that it happened on the 95th birthday of WLS/Chicago... my last firing came on MY birthday back in 2002." [Ed. note: As reported by Robert Feder, Childers is the author of Chicago's WLS Radio, a critically acclaimed illustrated history of "The Big 89," published by Arcadia Publishing in 2008. He also created a tribute website at] Childers will now focus on his v/o work as he plans his next move. He can be reached at 630-901-9670 or


I was glued to the tube watching this...even got a little verklempt.

This is a great piece in the Washington Post written by Thomas Boswell. It captures the excitement, drama, and history of that magical moment incredibly well.

I was driving through a snow storm with my kids and listened to the final putt on the radio. That is without question the first time I've ever listened to golf on the radio.

Minutia Men, Episode 130

EP130: Rick gets the very first copy of his new book “everycubever”, plus Rick and Dave discuss a new class at the University of Kansas, bees in a woman’s eyes, a Cubs media debacle, Rick’s brush with Kevin Nealon, and they interview local Chicago TV-reporter Dane Placko.

Listen to it here.

Mitch in Westmont

It was good catching up with Eckhartz Press author Mitch Michaels on Saturday in Westmont. I didn't realize it was National Record Store day. It's always fun hanging out at a record store, but even better on an important day like that.

Good to see WGN Radio's Wendy Snyder there with her two sons, and former colleague John Calhoun (currently at the River, but we worked together at WJMK). Young up and comer Brandon Herman was there too. Also, met Samantha James (The River) and her husband for the first time.

Thanks to the folks at Blue Village Vinyl for inviting us out there. It was a fun way to spend a Saturday afternoon.