Oh no, they suck again
The Cubs had a terrible road trip, but their struggles aren't new
On April 19, the Cubs were 11-6 in second place in the NL Central two games behind the Brewers and had just completed a sweep in Oakland in which they pounded the hapless A’s 26-3 in three games. Their run differential stood at +39 on the season, best in the National League and third best in all of baseball behind the Rays and Rangers.
Cubs fans who confused activity with accomplishment in the offseason were now proudly reassured that their optimism that Jed Hoyer had built a bona fide good baseball team.
Those of us who actually want him to build a good baseball team were at least encouraged that the team he had settled for was solid enough to take advantage of an awful National League Central.
And, how have things gone since? The Cubs have gone 9-20, are in fourth place, just a game ahead of the Reds, and have posted a -16 run differential over that span.
Winning papers over a lot of dumb, and losing exposes it.
There is enough blame to go around. Until very recently, the Cubs handcuffed their own roster with an assortment of mediocre or worse bench pieces that they just couldn’t bear to part with. They carried three catchers for no reason other than they felt Luis Torrens was so valuable that they didn’t dare try to pass him through waivers. And then when they did finally DFA him they sold him to the Orioles who got a good look at him and almost immediately DFA’d him and now he’s joined old pal Franmil Reyes on minor league contracts for the Nationals.
They kept corner infielder Edwin Rios, who David Ross would never play. He got 20 at bats in the first 30 games of the season because of the Cubs weird, pointless obsession with wasting time on Nick Madrigal at third base. Rios is back with the team now and got an at bat on Saturday. Yay.
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