So, after a fairly miserable 2010, the 2011 Cubs have started the year 3 and 3.
Guess what? After a miserable 1983, the 1984 Cubs started out 3 and 3. After an awful 2002, the 2003 Cubs started out 3 and 3. After a pathetic 2006 (which started out 4-2, BTW) the 2007 Cubs started out 3 and 3. Guess what the 2008 team did with their first 6 games? Yep, they split 'em, three up, three down.
So am I saying the 2011 team is going to win the Central?
After the jump: Yes, yes I am. All Cubs teams that start out 3-3 win divisions.
Well, except for 1987, when they finished last. So that plan is
shot all to hell.
Fact is, unless you're one of them who regards
the Cubs as nothing more than "reality" tv programming, or an
independently wealthy alcoholic that can routinely get soused in the
bleachers on 8 dollar beers, watching a .500 team really doesn't
generate much quality entertainment. Especially when, for those who
haven't been watching, there isn't a lot of noise at Wrigley, because 20
thousand empty chairs are pretty quiet, unless they are being snapped
open and shut repeatedly.
There are some encouraging signs
(Castro, Ramirez and Soto hitting, decent starting pitching from
everyone except Dempster) as well as some red flags (miserable defense,
combustible bullpen), and of course, the unexpected news that Wells was
going on vacation, as well as Cashner. Personally, I get some solace
from the fact that our manager seems lucid.
The presumption was
that the Pirates and the DBacks would be two of the worst teams we will
see all year, so nothing less than a 4-2 record would be acceptable.
Who knows if this is true? After all, last year at this time, everyone
thought San Diego and Colorado sucked, and that was certainly not the
there was a particular trend that was apparent with this ballclub, I
would be the first to get out here and complain. I have absolutely zero
patience anymore with avoidable stupidity and persistent failure. As I
said, our defense blows, but that is almost entirely out of anyone's
control at this point. If Hendry could have replaced Soriano, or
Ramirez, he would have. If he could have Castro grow up quicker, so
that he stops making rookie mistakes, he would. If there were any
decent second basemen available for trade, and if we had anything of
value to offer, he would. We have very little roster flexibility on
this particular club, thanks to the double handful of bad contracts, as
well as our lack of everyday prospects.
I hate seeing this club
not make plays, but I am resigned to it. Quade and his coaches can
instruct and drill all day and night, but there isn't a lot of speed or
athleticism on the 2011 Cubs, and not a great deal anyone can do about
We might win in spite of it; chances are, we won't. Just
keep this in mind as you fantasize about committing 200 million dollars
to Albert Pujols this winter. Yeah, he'd hit 50 in Wrigley by default,
but he can't play all nine positions on defense.