Chicago Cubs: Crunching the numbers
Heading into the 2018 campaign, only the Los Angeles Dodgers and Houston Astros ranked higher in the pecking order for projected wins than the Cubs. Chicago entered the year fresh off their third straight National League Championship Series appearance, making it easy to understand the logic behind such rankings.
Last year, as the Cubs struggled with inconsistent production from many prominent names, the injury bug also struck, forcing their hand early in the season to attempt to make up for the losses. Still, the team was able to reach the playoffs, losing in disappointing fashion in extra innings to the Colorado Rockies in the National League Wild Card game.
Meanwhile, the St. Louis Cardinals and Milwaukee Brewers did not even come close to sniffing the Cubs in the projections. The Cardinals saw their win total at a meager 85.5 while the Brewers fell close behind at 83.5 wins. It is why we play the game, however.
The North Siders, of course, matched their respective number, while the Brewers blew right past it on their way to a division crown. The Central became one of the most exciting divisions in baseball and is poised to do some again moving into 2019.