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Chicago Cubs 2021 Outlook


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Posted (edited)
10 minutes ago, Richard Kimble said:

I remember that controversy well. Kenny Williams sure paid the price for that...oh wait...he's still President of OPs. Jerry Reinsdorf has shown blind loyalty to his front offices like no other owner in pro sports, and Williams has rewarded him nicely, while the Bulls...oh what a mess since Jordan left.

Anyway, I feel like fans really following this team want them to go ahead and make the painful move of gutting it to its core. The die was cast when they traded Darvish in the offseason, and the farm system is bare so I'd rather endure another re-build than to take a shot that will come up short, and then be reduced to years of being in contention for the division, but not the league title. There's also the issue of extending at least one of the core trio; everyone knows it won't be Bryant, and I felt they absolutely insulted Rizzo with the extension they offered him. I will be really mad if they don't bring Baez back, as a fan, he's the most fun to watch. With the rich FA class next year, and the knowledge that Ricketts won't spend on more than one big ticket in the offseason (they have a lot of money coming off the books and can still easily afford a market value deal for a top FA), makes me feel that building around his regressing plate skills will not work out well. Extending Rizzo as a cornerstone still seems the best option. Its also annoying to see the offense finally clicking like this after years of sputtering around. It is hard to look at their current record and argue they can't continue to be about this good, which is good enough to be in the division race and likely near the top of the Wild Card. 

1.  The die was cast when they held onto the "core" entirely too long (thinking year after year that their hitting would magically turn around) instead of trading some of those pieces at the right time.  Darvish was always going to be dealt because of his contract & the Cubs perceived financial woes.

2.  They have a LOT of talent in the very low levels of their minor league system that aren't showing up on top prospects lists - I do think in the next year-ish or so you're going to see a sizeable bump up in rankings for the Cubs minor league system.  Hernandez, Howard, Jensen, Strumpf, Carraway, Nwogo to name a few. Some of their youngsters are coming up and producing now - obviously Hoerner, Alzolay, Thompson & Steele (who was looking fantastic before his injury).

Edited by IlliniGuy76
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Posted (edited)
7 minutes ago, IlliniGuy76 said:

1.  The die was cast when they held onto the "core" entirely too long (thinking year after year that their hitting would magically turn around) instead of trading some of those pieces at the right time.  

2.  They have a LOT of talent in the very low levels of their minor league system that aren't showing up on top prospects lists - I do think in the next year-ish or so you're going to see a sizeable bump up in rankings for the Cubs minor league system.  Some of their youngsters are coming up and producing now - Alzolay, Thompson & Steele (who was looking fantastic before his injury).

Absolutely agree on the first point, I meant of course that for 2021 they charted their course towards more trades by shipping Yu. Still, the return for him didn't include any of the Pads top prospects. Alzolay is a breath of fresh air that we have finally developed a young talented pitcher and he's getting results, and Nico was looking good too. It's just hard to trust the prospect of more prospects (lol) developing well with the track record the Cubs have shown. Especially if they're trying to compete within an insufficient budget, they won't be able to let rookies go through the motions. They seem to be turning a corner with younger players, as you said its hard not to notice every young arm in the bullpen has been tremendous, probably the biggest reason they are where they are. I guess Maples is my favorite of the bunch. But we kind of know enough about the way this team is constructed to say they have a remote chance of matching up well in the postseason. When the Marlins knocked them out last year, I felt that was the end of the era. This resurgent run is fun, but it feels like more of a hindrance to getting the franchise back on track than anything.

Edited by Richard Kimble
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Posted (edited)
6 minutes ago, Richard Kimble said:

Absolutely agree on the first point, I meant of course that for 2021 they charted their course towards more trades by shipping Yu. Still, the return for him didn't include any of the Pads top prospects. Alzolay is a breath of fresh air that we have finally developed a young talented pitcher and he's getting results, and Nico was looking good too. It's just hard to trust the prospect of more prospects (lol) developing well with the track record the Cubs have shown. Especially if they're trying to compete within an insufficient budget, they won't be able to let rookies go through the motions. They seem to be turning a corner with younger players, as you said its hard not to notice every young arm in the bullpen besides those you mentioned have been tremendous, probably the biggest reason they are where they are. But we kind of know enough about the way this team is constructed to say the have a remote chance of matching up well in the postseason. When the Marlins knocked them out last year, I felt that was the end of the era. This resurgent run is fun, but it feels like more of a hindrance to getting the franchise back on track than anything.

Oh I felt that the end of an era was before the Marlins debacle for sure.  I completely agree - this resurgence is "fun" but it's not helping getting the franchise back to where it needs to be.  You're always welcome to peel away this onion - while Theo Epstein will always be revered in Chicago (and he absolutely should be & will be by me!) his leadership lead to the team being hamstrung by the Heyward contract, the Quintana deal debacle (although at the time I completely supported the deal) & the previously stated fact... they relied on the "core" far far far too long.  Decisions like that have really screwed the Cubs.

Edited by IlliniGuy76
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Sun, May 30

Cubs selected the contract of INF Sergio Alcantara from Triple-A Iowa.

Advice: Alcantara was designated for assignment and sent outright to Triple-A back on February 20. The 24-year-old is batting .328/.481/.459 with two home runs, two doubles, and three stolen bases over 61 minor league at-bats this season.

Interesting move, as this involved DFA'ing Tyson Miller. Not sure I like it since they are probably going to have put David Bote on 60-day IL anyway after the awful separated shoulder injury the other day. But Alcantara probably is going to stay up since he is out of options. 

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Trevor Williams was scratched from his scheduled start on Monday after undergoing an emergency appendectomy on Sunday morning.

It's unclear who the Cubs will use in his place on Monday and how long Williams will be sidelined for. The 29-year-old hurler owns a 5.36 ERA, 1.60 WHIP and 49/20 K/BB ratio across 43 2/3 innings in 10 starts on the season. 

Season 6 Episode 23 GIF - Find & Share on GIPHY

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