With October baseball approaching, it’s refreshing for Cubs fans to finally have something to root for. As excitement builds toward fall baseball, let's take a moment to break down the Cubs’ success to-date.
The Cubs demonstrate the true meaning of a “25 man roster.” Most teams use their top guys every day. This wears out their stars, and eventually they can’t perform as well. The Cubs don’t have this problem because coach Joe Maddon can trust each and every player on his bench. He has the ability to give his “go to” guys rest from time to time because he knows that his bench can produce positive results no matter what the situation brings. This will be key for the Cubs heading into the post-season.
Another huge reason why the Cubs are playing so well is their pitching staff. Going into the season everyone knew that Jake Arrieta would be the top guy. People were also expecting good numbers from John Lackey and Jon Lester. The player that no one saw coming was Kyle Hendricks. This guy came into the year as the 4th man in the 5 man rotation. He is now at the top of the race for the NL Cy Young Award. Having four pitchers that can easily be the ace on any other team gives the Cubs a huge advantage.
A team can have the best players in the world, but it means nothing if they don’t play well together. The Cubs have more chemistry than Chicago has ever seen…. partially because they are all friends outside the clubhouse. The veterans take care of the rookies, and they all hang out together. This clearly translates very well on the field. The closer they are, the better they will play.
As long as Kris Bryant and Anthony Rizzo are with the Cubs, Chicago will have a very elite baseball team. These two guys are so consistently good, both at bat and in the field. They are clutch in big situations, and they give the Cubs a chance to win every game. Everybody on the team respects them and follows by their example. They deserve a lot of credit for the Cubs’ success.
Finally... the fans. The Cubs have the best, most loyal fans in the league. This has been proven time and time again, for over a century. It’s been 108 years since the Cubs brought home the World Series and Cubs fans still fill up every seat in Wrigley Field for every game. The fans give the Cubs something to play for.
As Cubs fans count down the days until the playoffs, the players will try to get into a winning rhythm. This October should be very interesting for Cubs fans. I for one will be saving up my money for a blue World Series sweatshirt.