4 reasons the 2024 Chicago Cubs are playoff contenders

The Chicago Cubs have multiple reasons to believe a playoff berth is within reach this year.

St. Louis Cardinals v Chicago Cubs
St. Louis Cardinals v Chicago Cubs / Chris Coduto/GettyImages
2 of 4

3. Bullpen is quietly a strength 

Last year, the bullpen was worn down to a nub at the end of the season. Still, the team’s three late-inning relievers, Adbert Alzolay, Julian Merryweather, and Mark Leiter Jr., played vital roles that helped the Cubs attain as much success as they did in 2023. Alzolay recorded a career-best 2.67 ERA with 22 saves, while Merryweather (3.38) and Leiter Jr. (3.50) earned respectable marks.

Those three arms are still there, along with Hector Neris, who is fresh off a career year, and Yency Almonte, who had a down season last year but was elite a year prior. Other than that, Luke Little looks like he will be a critical piece for the Cubs before long, and the team will likely have Jose Cuas, who did well in his own right once he was traded to Chicago at the deadline in ‘23.