Chicago Cubs need Albert Almora to find sustained success this season

(Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)
(Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images) /
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Chicago Cubs
(Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images) /

Chicago Cubs: Almora’s decline aligns with team’s struggles

Saying a Chicago Cubs player struggled offensively late last season is about as obvious a statement one can make. But I’ll say it regardless. As the team’s bats went ice-cold, Almora followed suit.

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In July, he hit just .222 – and with the lack of walks – his OBP plummeted to just .253. After putting up a .403 BAbip the month prior, he clocked in at just .281, a figure just below league average (usually in the .300 range). Granted, you don’t ever expect a guy to continue putting up a BAbip in the .400 range – it’s just not sustainable. But as the second half wore on, Almora never again caught fire as he did in the first half.

Not surprisingly, as Almora went, so did the team. In Cubs’ wins, the young outfielder put up an .817 OPS. In losses? That figure plummets to .530 – hardly what you need from a pretty much everyday player in your lineup. Well, at least you hope that’s what he becomes – especially on the heels of that first half.

So what can Albert Almora do to avoid the pitfalls that plagued him late last season and derailed what seemed to be a very promising campaign?