You know when you have “blogger” on your profile as something you identify with, then you should probably blog, right? I’ve been gone since we parted ways with ESPN Des Moines, but hopefully not forgotten. Life doesn’t give us a choice on when it hands us challenges and obstacles. And I have found that out many times since being “away” from writing. There is one thing I can tell you for certain, I have been able to be baseball crazy this whole time and what a time to love these Cubbies!!!!
With the trade deadline rapidly approaching and the long-awaited trade of Manny Manchado to the Los Angeles Dodgers there’s lots to discuss and mull over. First and foremost, regardless of current win loss records, did the Los Angeles Dodgers just become the favorites to win the National League pennant this year? I have to say they did, with present performance taken into consideration. If Rizzo becomes Rizzo and Chatwood can become somewhat reliable and starters Hendricks and Quintana can keep on stringing together great quality starts, and dare I even mention Darvish? If those things can happen/improve, then we are definitely going deep into postseason, but right now, that is a large IF. I understand that there is an urgency among fans to address the starting pitching (yet again), and I tend to agree with that, but at what cost? Part of what has made the Chicago Cubs such a force, has been their depth, and not just their depth, their talent within their depth. Joe has had the freedom to give extended days off, mix up line ups and get guys innings at positions we wouldn’t guess, and we haven’t lost a beat at what talent is on the field. Keep in mind, all that changes when you start talking about trading away our on field product for another starting pitcher. All of the sudden our fairly deep bench becomes not so deep and guys that are not used to being starters and playing day in and day out are being asked to step into that spot and maintain thru the end of the season and hopefully deep into the playoffs. This is alarming to me. Don’t think that the quality of pitcher Jacob deGrom is, is lost on me, I realize what we would be getting in return. What makes me frustrated/sad/worried is would we even be having this conversation if Yu Darvish was the pitcher we thought we were signing? Obviously we have a couple years for him to make that up to us but what happens to the rest of our team in the meantime? Are we able to keep all our key guys and maybe even attract another couple players who would only add to our current talent level? These are all questions that will be answered over the next couple of weeks, months, years and I am hopeful of the outcomes.
Because I can never leave on anything but a positive note, let’s go down this path for a second. At the beginning of the season if I listed off the current state of the Chicago Cubs (Chatwood leading the majors in walks, Kris Bryant and Anthony Rizzo not having their best offensive 1st half of the season, Hendricks with a losing record and an uncharacteristically high ERA, the obvious whoas of Darvish and so on and so on) would you think for a second we would have the best record in the National League and be in sole possession of first place at the break? No way. My point is, not everything was clicking on this team at the end of the first half, imagine what would be happening if it was. We have a second half to look forward to and I plan to see a lot more excitement from this Chicago Cubs team. Thanks for hanging with me, all 5 of you, who read my blogs. I am looking forward to having a more regular schedule for the second half of the season. Until next time ……………Bryz.