Tuesday, June 4, 2013
Meet the Bald Eagles
The magic of technology. Through the magic of technology we were able to reach out and connect with one of the most influential CFCL owners. As has been posted here before, (http://cfclrebelcopperfield.blogspot.com/2013/04/ballad-of-bald-eagle.html), Bob Monroe joined the CFCL in 1986. For the next six years he not only terrorized the league but brought it to new heights. He introduced computerization and spreadsheets so that David didn't have to calculate the stats by hand with pencil and eraser.
By the time he resigned from the league in 1991 and moved to Colorado due to a corporate promotion, Bob and the Bald Eagles had left their mark. In six short years they finished second three times (the first three years of their existence, by the way. No owner in CFCL history has come in and finished that high his first three seasons - although the Copperfields started their history with a 2nd, a 3rd and the 1st of three consecutive championships in their first three years) and won the title in 1991, their last year in the league. Following the questions is a current photo of Bob and his sons enjoying a nice Colorado evening. Bob is the old guy in the middle.
It's time to Meet The Bald Eagles.
Is it true you tried to poison Dem Rebels owner with a glass full of water and Tabasco sauce while explaining it as rusty water from your pipes?
It was actually an attempt to save humanity. Think of it as putting chlorine in the gene pool. And, as any decent crawdad-sucking Cajun knows, it's spelled T-O-B-A-S-C-O. Proves my point! As I recall, the owner of Dem Rebels was publishing a weekly CFCL newsletter. And, following the example of East Coast media and ignoring anything not from New York or Boston, Mr. Bentel regularly abused the poor working stiffs on the Bald Eagles. Had the attempt proved successful, it would have undoubtedly been ruled justifiable homicide.
Your last appearance in the CFCL was 1991 (23 years ago) yet you are still a big presence in the league. Our weekly blog is named in your honor and we have two entries in our Constitution dedicated specifically to your team building styles. What are your thoughts about the CFCL?
George Washington's final appearance in the United States was more than 200 years ago. There are lots of things named after him and I would say he still has a strong presence in the national psyche. At the time I joined the league there was one old guy (Fred is MUCH older than I am. I was only 32 when I joined the league!) and a bunch of snot-nosed punks who thought they knew how to evaluate baseball talent. How else can you explain naming an entire league after the biggest losers ever know to mankind? Even the French have a better chance to win a war than the Cubs to win the World Series.
In 1991 you finally reached the championship. You even had your wife pour Yoo-Hoo over your head since we couldn’t do it as you had relocated to Colorado. Any regrets about leaving in 1991 and not defending your title?
Yeah, leaving the traffic and winters of Chicago behind and moving to this hell-hole we call Colorado was a tough call. Besides, I set the example of leaving while on top, an example John Elway followed just a few short years later. I do have a great picture of Joel pouring a bottle of Yoo-Hoo over my head. My proudest moment from CFCL. Although fleecing a fellow owner always did create a warm, fuzzy feeling that's hard to duplicate.
You found out about the league and joined ultimately because of your friendship with the Copperfields. What do you recall about joining the league?
I'm surprised I didn't lose my job! All of a sudden, I was reading both the Trib and the Sun-times, plus USA Today, Baseball Weekly and Mazeroski's annual book. And doing it at work! I built a spreadsheet (and remember that this was in the days before Excel existed) that I used to help me evaluate league talent and helped established a value for every player in the league. I probably used the data that came from those spreadsheets as too much of an absolute and made some poor choices based on data that neatly fit into my expectations. Actually, since that's a lot of what I wound up doing professionally, it turned out to be pretty good training.
Any favorite memories from the six years you spent in the league?
I loved the draft every year! Doing the prep work and poring over every little bit of data you could find. Reading about this new prospect in the Reds organization named Barry Larkin and then not being able to get Dave to part with the minor league draft choice to get him. Getting Dave to trade Garry Mathews to me for next to nothing and then having him have a super year was a great start to making trades. I never understood why other owners would hang up on me when I would call to commiserate with them over a player that had been injured that day. I think my big heart was just misunderstood.
You were easily the most maniacal Cardinals fan in our league. Do you still cheer on the Redbirds?
I really don't follow baseball much anymore. The Rockies are tough to root for because their pitching is always so suspect. The old days of the Blake Street Bombers (Galarraga, Bichette, Castillo and Walker) were a lot more fun to watch. They lost a lot of games 12-11, but getting the 11 runs was exciting. Since MLB went on strike the last time, that kind of did it for me. Until last year, I had not gone to a game nor watched a game on TV since the strike. Except watching the Cardinals in the World Series. I know you guys don't understand this feeling, but having YOUR team win the World Series is pretty cool.