One of the many issues facing the Cubs offense is their struggles against lefties.
The Cubs offense is broken. It has been for some time and that’s not new information to anyone who’s followed this team in recent years. The team’s three true outcome approach to offense is a major issue and it culminated in inconsistency for the better part of the last three seasons.
We saw it again this season. In the final weeks of the regular season and in the team’s brief postseason appearance, the Cubs completely failed to manufacture runs – even against the Miami Marlins. That’s hardly promising, especially when we’re potentially looking at bringing back largely the same group one more time in 2021.
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“On one hand, we have to be honest about our performance,” Theo Epstein said in his end-of-season press conference. “We have not gotten to the point with our offensive production that we expect it to get to, with a number of players who are really talented and have done some remarkable things in this game.”
One of the team’s biggest issues offensively? Hitting against left-handed pitching. Cumulatively, the Cubs managed a .619 OPS against southpaws – the worst mark in the National League. They hit just .196 – that pretty much tells the story.
Just two players with more than 20 at-bats hit north of .250 against lefties for the North Siders: Victor Caratini and Kris Bryant. As a team, the Cubs struggled mightily against fastballs, despite turning in sold hard-hit numbers.
This must be a top priority for Epstein and the front office this offseason. Chicago can’t possibly hope to find success in 2021 without addressing their struggles against lefties. Of course, there are issues that stretch far beyond this singular shortcoming – but you have to start somewhere.
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Expect the team to take full advantage of what could be an unprecedented number of non-tenders this offseason. If they can find a couple bats to supplement a talent, albeit underperforming core, it could work wonders for the team’s ability to produce runs next season.