With the start of Spring Training right around the corner, it's time for our annual predictions for the Chicago Cubs heading into the 2024 campaign. Although the roster is not fully set, I still have some hot takes and an idea about what will happen this season with certain players. Let's dive right into these five bold predictions for the Cubs. First up is Seiya Suzuki picking up where he left off in the second half of last year.
5 bold predictions for the 2024 Cubs - 5. Seiya Suzuki earns first All-Star honor
My first prediction is centered around the second half of Seiya Suzuki's 2023 season and how, if that torrid pace continues into 2024, he's a lock for the All-Star game in Texas this coming season. To recap, after a brief benching by former manager David Ross, Suzuki returned with a vengeance, slashing .313/.372/.566 with a 149 wRC+ in the second half. His batting values saw him land mainly in the league's upper half. Given that he did this throughout 256 at-bats, it's safe to say it hardly looked like a fluke.
From the first to the second half, his ISO shot up from .147 to .252, including a spike in wOBA of .326 to .393. These are all the markings of a player over a prolonged period starting to turn the corner at the MLB level. He's had hot streaks before, but this sustained production was one of the key reasons the Cubs were so close to making the postseason in 2023. His 13 home runs and 46 RBIs in 67 games to finish the season would be a 30 HR+ pace if he can have that type of production all year.