Kind of a follow up to “It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas” post. The Cubs were off Sunday and I was jonesing for some baseball. It’s all pretty much on the resurgence of young Cubs, Anthony Rizzo and Starlin Castro. I was one of the few skeptical people when Theo Epstein rolled into town. Now, I am more on board than not. Here’s why:
Kris Bryant is tearing up every league he has played in so far. I cannot wait to see if he can do this in the majors. Sure, he probably won’t tear it up, but just adding him to a lineup with Castro and Rizzo should be pretty cool. Javy Baez should be ready to join the club, either this September or next spring. I like that potential.
So far Theo and Jed have been able to surround the club with lower budget free agents and turn them into prospects. Their only blatant misstep seems to be Edwin Jackson. This does give me a little pause, as a Cubs fan, I am constantly waiting for the rug (or ball–Charlie Brown) to be pulled out from under me. My scars run deep.
Still, it’s been a heck of a job so far. Recently drafted Kyle Schwarber seems to be on a good tear in class A ball. Travis Wood and Jake Arrieta are nice pitchers who seem to be able to keep the team in any game and eat a lot of innings. Then there is Jeff Samardzija. What to do with him? At 29, he probably has 5-6 “All-Star” years left in him. His price tag seems like it’s going to be over $20 million per year. Not sure if you are getting your money’s worth there.
All that aside, I think the Cubs have a moderate chance of being competitive next year. It maybe time to stop flipping those solid veterans and try to put a winner together. Even if it’s not quite that time, I am excited about the possibility. As I said in the other post, I can see the light at the end of the tunnel. It’s “Cubbie” blue.