Morning Marquee: Chicago Cubs to open up 2016 campaign on ESPN


Just a day after Chicago Cubs right-hander Jake Arrieta was named the 2015 N.L. Cy Young award winner, announced that ESPN will be broadcasting seven Opening Day games next season.

This will be the second year in a row in which the Cubs are featured on ESPN to begin a campaign, this time they’ll be on the road in the West Coast taking on Albert Pujols, Mike Trout, Andrelton Simmons and the rest of the Angels.

Three games will take place during the first Sunday of April and four more will take place the following day. Broadcasting key games including the World Series Champions Kansas City Royals visiting the New York Mets will be huge for this league and would set the tone for the remainder of the year.

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The Cubs will enter the new year with the N.L. Manager and Rookie of the Year in both Joe Maddon and Kris Bryant. Not only did they take three major awards this week, but several Cubs received N.L. MVP votes.

First baseman Anthony Rizzo, Arrieta, and Bryant made the list only to lose by a landslide at the hands of Washington Nationals outfielder Bryce Harper. Washington’s 23-year-old slugger was joined by former Cubs prospect, Josh Donaldson, who won the honors as a member of the Toronto Blue Jays after a spectacular 2015 season of his own.

There’s no doubt that next April’s Opening Day games will feature a handful of soon-to-be All-Star’s that will battle it out in the Summer Classic next July. Hopefully, the National League will be well represented by the Chicago Cubs.

Here’s more from around the league:

Bryce Harper, Josh Donaldson win BBWAA MVPs‘ –

Chicago Cubs Gradeouts: Travis Wood shows worth out of bullpen‘ – Cubbies Crib

Chicago Cubs: Theo Epstein and Jeff Samardzija had a private meeting?‘ – Cubbies Crib

Chicago Cubs: Does a trade with the Indians make sense?‘ – Cubbies Crib