Entering the 2014 campaign, most fans were very grounded in their expectations of the Chicago Cubs. They knew a tough season lay ahead. They just hoped to see them be competitive, maybe see some of the young talent makes its way to Wrigley Field, and be able to stomach what could possibly be another last-place finish.
There have been some bright spots thus far. Starlin Castro and Anthony Rizzo have rebounded, and look like the money the Cubs spent to sign them as “foundation” players was well spent. Jeff Samardzija, while winless, has had A+ stuff, established himself as the ace of the staff. Unfortunately what staff will call him that is still undecided.
With the struggles so far, and the expiring deals of a handful of players, the Cubs are of course expected to be sellers again at the deadline. Nate Schierholtz, Samardzija, and other names have been tossed around. Now, I’m not buying playoff tickets, but let’s have some fun.
Cubs have won six out of nine, and have been in most games this season. So, what if the Cubs started winning? Like realistically start to look like a threat and play .600 baseball? Will it be considered a fluke and the hypothetical deals all stay in line? Or is it in fact a team of “misfits” for lack of a better word, starting to gel and play good baseball?
The starting pitching has been stupendous all season. The bullpen has had its ups and downs, but seems to have stabilized. The biggest concern was the offense, and an inability to score runs. Recently they’ve overcome that issue and have provided adequate run support, even providing eight runs for Samardzija who earned his first win. And there is of course promise down the line as Javier Baez, recently named PCL player of the week, and Kris Bryant continue to excel in the minors.
Again I stress, this is all hypothetical, but something I find myself wondering about. The Cubs, and their fans, want a winner. So if they start winning…isn’t that the objective?
In all honesty I hope the good play keeps up. I think Rick Renteria has had some growing pains, but as a first year manager it was bound to happen. He’s starting to get a better understanding of his players, and it seems to be paying off as of late.
Maybe the Cubs can eliminate the current plan and help create a new one.