Chicago Cubs: 3 decisions from 2021 that went up in smoke
It doesn’t take a genius to know the 2021 season didn’t play out in the fairy tale fashion the Chicago Cubs – or their fans – had hoped for. An early hot start was erased by not one, but two, double-digit losing streaks. So where did it all go wrong? There are plenty of culprits on that front, make no mistake.
It’s no secret that by the trade deadline the Cubs had thrown in the towel. Anything and anyone of value was shown the door, with the lone exception being catcher Willson Contreras. To throw salt in the wound that came from watching Kris Bryant, Anthony Rizzo and Javier Baez get traded, the bullpen too was ripped apart in an effort to bring back more young prospects and hopefully shorten the rebuild. Personally, I still can’t help but wonder if the Cubs have made a second-half run if they bought pitching at the trade deadline. Bryant and Rizzo finished with decent years, while Baez went on a roll in the second half and crushed it in the Big Apple.
Regardless, that was then and this is now. The question that now looms is just how soon the Cubs become aggressive and return to being a postseason contender. After adding Wade Miley and Marcus Stroman before the lockout, the answer may be sooner than you think. Though still soured by the recent loss of their core, what Cubs fans must now realize is that signing Miley and Stroman, along with serious Carlos Correa rumors, tells us this team isn’t going to sit back and wait. They’re going to be back in the hunt sooner rather than later.
Did it have to go down this way? Not necessarily. Per usual, money gets in the way as one side thinks a player is worth a certain amount while the player, justified or not, decides he is worth more and wishes to take his talents elsewhere. As fate had it, both Baez and Rizzo had a better second half at the plate than they did in Chicago in the first half.
Regardless of what happened with the Cubs deciding to keep absolutely no one from the 2016 core, there were other key decisions that took place that sent this team into a downward spiral 2021. Looking back, let’s take a look at 3 decisions made by the Chicago Cubs last year that frankly, went sideways pretty quickly.