Chicago Cubs: Errors continue to be Cubs’ Achilles heel

(Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images)
(Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images) /

To this point, the Chicago Cubs haven’t had much to hang their head on. They have struggled as an offense and a pitching staff, but perhaps their greatest concern should be their defensive play.

In recent seasons the Chicago Cubs blueprint for success has hinged on their ability to play strong, error-free baseball. We have not seen that from this team early on this season.

What we have seen, statistically speaking, is the second worst defensive team in baseball. In the Cubs 30 games this season they have recorded 26 errors.

To put it in some perspective, the defending World Series Champion Houston Astros have only recorded nine errors in their 35 games so far. That’s what it takes to win baseball games.

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Plain and simple, errors have been a huge contributing factor to the Cubs struggles this season. The Cubs have 14 losses so far this season and uncoincidentally they have committed one or more errors in 10 of those defeats.

Cubs errors always lead to their demise.

The Cubs are currently in the midst of a four-game losing streak and errors have cost them in three of those losses. In their 8-6 loss to the Cardinals on Saturday, shortstop Addison Russell was unable to handle a throw at second base from Anthony Rizzo, resulting in an error. Matt Carpenter followed that with a two-run double to left field, tying the game at 4-4.

In Friday’s 3-2 loss to the Cardinals, it was more of the same for the Cubs. Javier Baez, who was playing shortstop, began the top of the second inning with a throwing error, allowing Dexter Fowler to reach first base. Four batters later Tommy Pham hit a three-run home run which was all the Cardinals needed to win the game.

Friday’s offense was hardly the first for Baez this season, who surprisingly has a league-leading eight errors. While he may make a dazzling play every other day that seemingly only he could make, he has shown a tendency to get lazy in the field and make uncharacteristic mistakes.

Next: A look back at the first month of the season

When the Cubs won the World Series in 2016, they were led there by a defense that didn’t make mistakes. If they have any aspirations of being champions again, they will need to cut down on their errors and play clean baseball.