Chicago Cubs News

Chicago Cubs: Breaking down a starting rotation full of Cy Young contenders

Oct 7, 2016; Chicago, IL, USA; Chicago Cubs starting pitcher Jon Lester (34) warms up in the bullpen before game one of the 2016 NLDS playoff baseball series against the San Francisco Giants at Wrigley Field. Mandatory Credit: Jerry Lai-USA TODAY Sports
Oct 7, 2016; Chicago, IL, USA; Chicago Cubs starting pitcher Jon Lester (34) warms up in the bullpen before game one of the 2016 NLDS playoff baseball series against the San Francisco Giants at Wrigley Field. Mandatory Credit: Jerry Lai-USA TODAY Sports /
facebooktwitterreddit
Prev
5 of 6
Next
Mar 6, 2017; Tempe, AZ, USA; Chicago Cubs starting pitcher Jake Arrieta (49) throws in the first inning against the Los Angeles Angels during a spring training game at Tempe Diablo Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Matt Kartozian-USA TODAY Sports
Mar 6, 2017; Tempe, AZ, USA; Chicago Cubs starting pitcher Jake Arrieta (49) throws in the first inning against the Los Angeles Angels during a spring training game at Tempe Diablo Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Matt Kartozian-USA TODAY Sports /

Consistency, control will decide Arrieta’s performance

Jake Arrieta put together arguably the best half-season in Major League Baseball history to cap off the 2015 campaign, en route to a National League Cy Young Award.

Over the first few weeks of the 2016 season, it was much of the same. But, as the season waned on, the Chicago right-hander battled control issues, and his numbers suffered. His earned run average jumped a full run if you break the season down to pre and post-All-Star Break.

And, boy, did his doubters ever come clamoring out of the woodwork.

Which, to be blunt, is ridiculous.

Arrieta still finished ninth in Cy Young voting, making it three-straight Top 10 finishes for the right-hander. He earned his first All-Star Game selection and also brought home a Silver Slugger award, as well. Add 18 wins and just under 200 strikeouts to the mix and you’ve got a front-of-the-line starting pitcher – no matter how you break it down.

This year, Arrieta has two goals. One, win another World Series. That goal plays directly into the second goal: get paid. The better he pitches, the more the Cubs benefit. Regardless of whether or not he returns next season, the team needs their stud right-hander at his best in 2017.

For Chicago, it’s not about what the future holds. It’s about 2017 – and Arrieta at his best makes this team World Series favorites once again.

facebooktwitterreddit