Chicago Cubs: Just how good was that 2003 Cubs team?

Kerry Wood / Chicago Cubs (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)
Kerry Wood / Chicago Cubs (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images) /
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Chicago Cubs
(Photo by Brian Bahr/Getty Images) /

Chicago Cubs: The team added big bats towards the end of the season

In an era that is usually highlighted by Sammy Sosa, big contributions came from late reinforcements. The additions of Kenny Lofton and Aramis Ramirez in a highway robbery of the Pirates gave the Cubs a huge boost mid-season. As a team, the offense wasn’t eye-popping, but at least they got a legit leadoff man and a power bat to help down the stretch.

Chicago ranked  22nd in average (.259), 23rd in OBP (.323), 19th in slugging (.416), 14th in homers (172), 21st in wRC+ (91), carried the third-highest K% (18.7%) and finished 18th in fWAR (16.8).

Sosa hit 40 homers, but his numbers were beginning to decline. Mark Grudzielanek led the team with a .366 OBP (among batters who played more than 100 games). He was also the only batter to hit above .300 in 100-plus at-bats. Only Moises Alou and Alex Gonzalez reached 20 homers outside Sosa. No other Cubs player hit more than 22 long-balls.

Their OBP was league average and their power production was actually below average. The roster featured a lot of solid names but some of them got hurt, weakening the Cubs’ lineup on a daily basis.

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