The two weeks that follow the Dodgers series could be the most important of the season.
This Friday, the Cubs start a nine-game homestand when the Reds, Cardinals and Giants come to town. To stay in contention, the Northsiders need to make an impact against St. Louis and Cincinnati. While the defending World Series Champions have struggled out of the gate, San Francisco's rotation remains a scary group.
Following that, the Cubs have a meat-grinder road trip. They play two in Cincinnati, two in Florida (where the Marlins are challenging the Phillies in the East) and then three in Boston. If the Cubs can stay in striking distance, they should get a boost with Randy Wells and/or Andrew Cashner back in the rotation.
Ryan Dempster and Carlos Zambrano can give the Cubs some essential momentum tonight and tomorrow with good, long starts in LA.