Chicago Cubs: What will next year’s roster look like?

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

After another disappointing September finish, the Chicago Cubs again find themselves looking for answers and fixes on their  talented ball club.

One of the more difficult exercises when analyzing the 2019 Chicago Cubs (and trying to ascertain strengths and weaknesses), is looking at the stats and trying to figure out how this team could have struggled this badly at times.

When you look through the hitters, it’s tough to find guys who played significant time who grossly underperformed. When you look at the pitchers, there’s a bit more regression, but certainly the stats do not tell the whole story. Heck, even the run differential doesn’t jive with a team that was mediocre.

That being said, the team as a whole underperformed and lost more games than they should have, more games than the organization wanted to, and certainly more than the fans wanted to see. What does that mean after the “year of reckoning” promised by Theo Epstein after a miserable end to the 2018 season? It means change. Maybe not as much as some think, but it’s coming.

What kind of change is anyone’s guess, quite frankly. However, what we do know is that there will be a new manager with the departure of the best Cubs’ manager in my lifetime, Joe Maddon. There are also a ton of decisions that need to be made with respect to free agents, options, positions, and philosophy. While there won’t be any kind of huge teardown with the pieces the Cubs still have in place, it’s possible (or even likely, depending on who you ask) that a really solid player could be jettisoned in hopes of a better fit coming back in trade.

Still more than five months away from meaningful Cubs baseball, let’s try and sort out what might be on the field in 2020.