Wednesday, August 2, 2017

A hot start second half usual like since Maddon took the helm. The Cubs have beaten the teams they should have. No matter that their competition is around .500 and falling. Momentum is a rush. Late inning add on is this team’s M.O. witnessed by the Jason Heyward home run to beat Milwaukee. This is different from last year’s team which struggled to drive in runners in scoring position.
I said it all along the Brewers were never trying to win the division. It just took this long for the Cubs to finally get their heads together. So far second half pitching is on point. The bull pen is as leaky as any Cubs potential playoff team like the 2003 Cubs. Maybe the 2007 and 2008 Cubs under Lou Piniella.
With the team doing as well as they are I still wouldn’t bet against the Dodgers in a possible NLCS matchup. The Cubs have been active, adding Quintana to the staring staff and trading for a second catcher and left handed help in the bull pen. All of these moves are warranted for the future and a dramatic playoff run. With barely five games separating the teams in the division (sans the Cincinnati Reds) it is still anyone’s to win. The National League wild card is most likely coming out of the National League West.
While in Theo we trust we know dynasty’s come and go. I’d be selling the store to go back to back. A reliever or two can still be had after the trade deadline. Not worth trading away the future to upgrade what may still be a leaky bullpen. Another starting pitcher would’ve been my focus even if it means having a 6 man rotation going forward. A hunger games type of thing to see who makes the post season roster.
This is not a team that is used to losing which the reason for doing what they are. But they seem to be building for a run at the 2017 title. They’ve got their work cut out for them considering their just 8 eight games over .500 and is not running away with things like the other division leaders. Once the Cubs reach 10 and 20 games over .500 one can tell how much they’ve turned things around and how much of a run the Cubs have in them and how hard are they going to have to work to show that the World Series once again goes through Chicago.
No one can deny a team when they get hot at the right time going into the playoffs which is why I suggest sending Ian Happ back to the minors until the September call up so he can get solid playing time rather than sitting on the bench or throw him in a deal for a pitcher where some expect a number of our current staff to walk at the end of the season. There should be an acceleration on the development of pitching in the minors. It’s time to see one or two of them grace the mound as soon as possible. If even they start in the bullpen.
One problem with trading away your future stars is that other teams get better fast. Once again there will be talk about the Cub factor as one way or the other a former Cub prospect is gracing a baseball roster somewhere and be the one to strike a big blow for their club. The sky is the limit with this team. Until the last pitch has been thrown and the final score announced, the Cubs are the defending World Series Champions.

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