Math For Dummies

This one Cubs beat reporter continues to say the Cubs have eaten $11.5 million when they released Carlos Silva. I’m assuming you have all figured out this beat reporter is Paul Sullivan because, who the hell else could it be? There’s a problem with what Sullivan is saying.

First, the Cubs were paid to take Silva from the Mariners. The Cubs were paying $8 million of Silva’s $11.5 million this season with the M’s picking up the rest. The Yankees have since picked him up meaning the Yankees will pay him about $390,000 this season. So the Cubs are on the hood for $7.6 million. That’s what the Cubs are paying Carlos Silva. The rest of the money is coming from two other teams. Simple enough, right?

Sullivan insists the Cubs have eaten all $11.5 million because, get this, they signed Marlon Byrd with some of the money they got from the Mariners. That’s right. To illustrate how iditiotc this is, let’s create a similar situation.

You have only $100 to your name. It’s been a rough year. With that $100 you decide you want to spend some of it in the Obstructed View Store. You’re going to spend $22 on this fabulous shirt.

You’re going to get your son something nice. His favorite color is blue and you see the excellent design by Adam and have to spend $15 on it. A happy son in such rough financial times can go a long way.

Throw in $5 in shipping and you’ve spent $42 of the $100 you had. Simple math means you have $58 remaining. Like most Americans, you’re going to spend it and worry about your financial crisis later, but you’re done with the fantastic Obstructed View merchandise. You spend the rest of the mony on a pair of shoes.

Two months after you get the shirts, your son decides green is his favorite color and wants that shirt out of sight. The good news is that at the same time as you’re discussing this with your son, your out of control dog is chewing up both shirts. Half of each shirt is gone and you decide against sewing them together to make one shirt. You throw them out. $42 down the drain. Obviously your dog goes without dinner because of his behavior. That’s a given. Your wife has left you and taken son and the dog with her. It’s not all bad, though. You still have your shoes and you’re loving them.


1. How much money did you receive little or no value from?

A. $22
B. $42
C. $100

2. Did anyone other than Paul Sullivan answer $42?

A. No
B. Nope
C. Nah
D. All of the above

I seriously cannot figure out how Paul Sullivan graduated from college. I don’t even know how he could get into college. How did he graduate middle school? This is simple math.

$11.5 million
-$3 million
-$0.4 million

You don’t add in some random player just to get it back to $11.5 million. The Cubs are paying Marlon Byrd $5.5 million this year. Yes, some of the money they saved they used to sign Byrd, but they didn’t throw Byrd away so you can’t possibly conclude the team threw $11.5 million away.

This is simple addition and subtraction. I know we’re using decimal points, which can really confuse children when they’re first learning math. Perhaps Sullivan is a child? Saying the Cubs threw $11.5 million away is the same as saying you threw $100 away using the above example. Nobody who has ever graduated high school would say that. Nobody!

I know we’ve been advertising the merchandise lately, but I did want to add that the money we do generate from it will help this site run. Adam, Jeff, Tim and I aren’t made of money and although the cost to maintain this site isn’t large and it’s definitely worth every penny of it, a little help is always nice. We know these aren’t the best economic times. We’re not as crazy as Tom Ricketts who asked the state for buckets of money they couldn’t afford. We’re not asking that from any of you. Buying a shirt or a pair of undies isn’t going to put you on our preferred reader’s list because we don’t have one. It won’t give you any special priveleges. You won’t see superior content that others don’t have access to. It’s just the same site, but if you do like some of the merchandise and have a few dollars to spend. we’ll likely put it toward running this site.