In their first interleague matchup of the season, the Chicago Cubs lost to last year’s World Series finalists, the Kansas City Royals, 8-4. “We played well today, and then we broke down at the end,” Chicago manager Joe Maddon said. “They showed why they went to the World Series last year, and we showed why we’re not ready yet.” It sounds like a cliche when managers and coaches talk about not being ready for championships, but is there ever a team that is ready for a championship? I believe sometimes it all comes down to smart playing of course, but the other team’s miscues and failures.
The bottom line? On any given day, any team can beat the best. For example, Jorge Soler and Addison Russell provided the home runs yesterday. Solar connected with a two run shot and Addison Russell with a solo rocket. So it was a little too late, but when the Cubs lose they still win. They’re learning every game and I’m seeing a lot of improvement with them, not only individually, but as a team.
“It’s always a bad thing, a leadoff walk when the game’s on the line, tie ballgame in the eighth inning,”Pedro Strop said. “The walk is a big issue. You’ve got to be able to get those outs.”
And that’s where the Cubs’ wheels fell off. Notice the cliche there? It’ll be something that they’ll work on for sure but if they want to catch the Cardinals, they can’t just work on it, they have to execute those plays to perfection. The Kansas City Royals made the playoffs last season, not as a fluke but they got hot at the right moment but also their on base play saved them. That might not happen again for them. The season’s only two months in and I know I’ve been getting excited about the Cubs chances but there’s still plenty of ball to play.
“You cannot make the physical or mental mistakes, and you’ve got to make pitches in order to beat good teams late,” Maddon said. “You have to have that will to beat them, and you do that by repeating fundamentals and techniques and having good at-bats.” The Cubs look like they’re in the hunt in the likes of Ben Zobrist. What do you guys think of that? Or what if they call up Kyle Schwarber and Javier Baez could be ready soon. There’s also a question of Starlin Castro. I think they should trade him.