Chicago Cubs 2019 Season

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There are a lot of unpleasant sports experiences (he says to the gathered group of diehard Illinois fans), but it's really hard for anything to compare with a slow motion September baseball collapse.
 
Tyngsborough, MA
1969..

2019..

For those who've been around awhile.
 
Geneseo, IL
The Cubs are 50-51 in their last 101 games. The Brewers made up 5 games on the Cubs in the past week.
 
Geneseo, IL
The Cubs set a franchise record today for homers in a season (236). The Pirates have given up ten runs or more in a game 28 times this year. :poop:
 
Fun weekend beating up on the Indianapolis Indians’ pitching staff with the wind blowing out.

I think things will go back to normal with Cincinnati and their actual Major League staff coming to town tomorrow.
 
NL Central race is about to get real interesting. Cards in 1st, Cubs 2 back, Brewers 3 back. Brewers have the easiest remaining schedule while the Cards have the most difficult. Cubs and Cards play each other 7 times. Really anybody’s division.
 
Likes: IanKEvans2
NL Central race is about to get real interesting. Cards in 1st, Cubs 2 back, Brewers 3 back. Brewers have the easiest remaining schedule while the Cards have the most difficult. Cubs and Cards play each other 7 times. Really anybody’s division.
Also, the Nationals have a tough final stretch with 3 against the Cardinals and Indians and 5 against the Phillies. A lot of teams fighting for their playoff lives.

If the Cubs can’t win the division, maybe the Brewers can overtake the Nats so the Cubs don’t have to face Scherzer in a one game playoff.
 
Cubs lose, Cardinals lose, Brewers win.

At this point, I'm almost cheering for #TeamChaos and a three-way tie for first.
 
Geneseo, IL
The Cubs are in big trouble. Milwaukee has two games left with the Padres and then three each with the Pirates, Reds, & Rockies. The way they are playing right now they are probably in the playoffs. The Cubs are probably going to have to eliminate the Cardinals in the last ten games to get in. Although at this point I don't think the Cubs have the starting pitching to go very far even if they do get in.
 
Probable pitching match-ups for the huge series this weekend at Wrigley:

Thursday: Flaherty (10-8, 3.05) vs. Hendricks (11-9, 3.26)
Friday: Wacha (6-7, 4.76) vs. Quintana (13-8, 4.37)
Saturday: Hudson (16-7, 3.35) vs. Hamels (7-7, 3.92)
Sunday: Mikolas (9-14, 4.29) vs. Darvish (6-7, 4.02)
 
Losing those last two to the Reds have me pretty down on this team’s chances the rest of the way. I think they pretty much MUST take 3 of 4 from the Cards this weekend to have a chance.

So, I’m kind of mentally moving on to next year.

Barring any trades, the Cubs have a solid group of starting position players in Contreras, Rizzo, Bryant, Baez, Schwarber and Heyward. Hoerner could be another starter, or he could be a flash in the pan. Bote, Caratini and Happ are the beginnings of a decent bench. I suppose Garcia could be in the mix for the bench, too.

I don’t see how you can head into 2020 with any expectations of getting anything of value from Almora, Kemp, Russell and Descalso, and fully expect at least three of those to be DFA’ed or non-tendered before the beginning of next season if the Cubs can’t trade them.

Darvish, Hendricks and Quintana are three reliable starters. The Cubs have to be concerned about Lester going into next year. They have Chatwood, Graveman, Mills, Alzolay and Rea as candidates for 5th starter, swing man, and stopgap starters.

Kimbrel, Ryan and Wick are the only regulars under contract in the bullpen. I assume Phelps’ option will be picked up. The rest of the bullpen will be filled out by some combination of the depth starters I listed above and Maples, Wieck, Norwood and Underwood.

So, to field a championship caliber team, the Cubs need a starting outfielder and then another outfielder and middle infielder for depth. The middle infielder has got to be pretty close to starter quality unless you are really sure one of Hoerner, Bote, or Happ can be the guy.

The pitching situation is grim. They probably need at least one more starter capable of giving them at least 150 league average inning.

And then that bullpen... Wick looks really good. Ryan has added a reliable 2019 to his good 2016 with Detroit. Who knows with Kimbrel? Phelps pretty much had to come back because there’s no one else to do it. Even if you assume Kimbrel can be healthy and back to his normal self and that the Cubs can scrounge at least one decent reliever from their AAA pile, they likely have to acquire at least two more top flight relievers to have an anywhere near-championship caliber pen.

So, put that together and you’ll looking at needing two outfielders, an infielder, a starting pitcher and two relievers.

After arbitration and picking up the options of Rizzo, Quintana and Phelps, you’re looking at a payroll of right about $182MM. That gives you about $27MM to play with under the luxury tax.

You’re not going to be able to get all six of those players for that amount via free agency. This tells me, we’re probably going to see the first big trade of Major League talent since.the Starlin Castro trade four years ago.
 
Likes: IanKEvans2
Forever hopeful. This team has been far too dreadful over the past century not to be.
 
Battle back in the 9th, lose in the 10th as the bullpen blows it. Big money reliever gives up the winning run.

This just might be the final nail.
 
I feel that it is time to change more than just the manager...need to shake up the clubhouse. I feel like one or more from the big league roster need to be traded.

As well, does anyone else feel like the front office overvalued the guys on the big league roster and traded away the wrong guys (Gleyber, Eloy, and Soler)!
 
Likes: Illiniaaron
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traded away the wrong guys (Gleyber, Eloy, and Soler)
Not really? Set aside Gleyber, because pretty much every team could always use elite talent up the middle, but this Cubs team isn't lacking for sluggers.

Frankly, I've been shocked at Zobrist coming back after 4 months and - in several games - having the best ABs in the lineup. I think we all may have discounted how much they missed him.
 
Geneseo, IL
Not really? Set aside Gleyber, because pretty much every team could always use elite talent up the middle, but this Cubs team isn't lacking for sluggers.

Frankly, I've been shocked at Zobrist coming back after 4 months and - in several games - having the best ABs in the lineup. I think we all may have discounted how much they missed him.
Isn't it shocking that the guy who hasn't played for four months has a better approach at the plate than the "sluggers" and "stars" on this team?