Never mind misery. Meh loves company in the case of the 2013 Cubs and White Sox. Both of Chicago's baseball franchises will finish this season with subpar 79-83 records and again sit at home during October.
That's according to a simulation conducted by RedEye on Sony's "MLB The Show 13" on PlayStation 3. Here's a month-by-month breakdown:
Cubs catcher Welington Castillo tears a ligament in his finger on opening day and is out one to two months. Not a good omen. The rest of the month doesn't hold much better news—even with a three-game winning streak, the Wrigley Field dwellers finish 10-18, already 12 games back of red-hot Milwaukee. The Sox? Someone forgot to tell Jake Peavy and Gavin Floyd (a combined 0-7) how to pitch and the Sox are a game worse than the Cubs.
Things aren't looking up for the South Siders, as they follow a stretch of winning eight of 10 with losing three straight to the Cubs. Meanwhile, the Cubs get more bad injury news in the form of a herniated disc suffered by Matt Garza, who had been the Cubbies' best pitcher thus far.
Two teams, Philadelphia and Washington, try to trade for Sox backup infielder Josh Bell, who is hitting .195 in limited time. Do they know something we don't? Meanwhile, the Sox inch into respectability with a winning record in June but are still 11.5 games behind American League-leading Detroit. The Cubs also have creeped back toward .500 but remain mired in fourth in a tough NL Central.
With Phillies shortstop Jimmy Rollins out with an injury, Starlin Castro leads off the National League All-Star lineup. No Sox player gets close to being voted in, but because of the one All-Star per team rule, good ol' Paulie Konerko lands a spot on the AL roster.
Meanwhile, the Cubs and Sox enjoy decent, but not great, months of July. Second place in the AL Central means little for the Sox when they're 13 games behind Detroit.
Adam Dunn suffers a "head contusion" (whatever that is) during a wicked collision at home plate and will miss a month. The Sox, meanwhile, injure their chances at a wild card spot by finishing August on a seven-game losing streak. With a 64-71 record, they're a long shot. The Cubs are hanging on to fourth place in their division.
This is certainly not the best of times for Castillo. The boo-boo-prone catcher reinjures his finger and is out another few weeks. The Cubs end the season 79-83, an improvement from the 2012 team that lost 100 games. For the Sox, their 79-83 record feels like a disappointment for a team that narrowly missed the playoffs last season. But they're always next year, right? Right? Sigh.
Ryan Smith is a RedEye special contributor.
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