Opening Day Eve Thoughts

I just ate probably the best chimichanga I’ve ever had accompanied by this 32oz behemoth of a dos equis, and wanted to say a few words before Opening Day.

I think from a personal perspective, this is one of the most anticipated seasons I can remember, for a few reasons. Obviously the fact that we are 4-1 favs for the series is first and foremost, but a strong second is this thing right here, and of course, the way last season ended. But even just as a baseball fan, this particular season is really compelling. You’ve gotta figure the Cubs are going to be pitted against some interesting suspects down the stretch.

Here are a few things to watch:

PLAYING THE METS

Here’s game one of the NLCS last year. Sometimes ya gotta go back an relive the pain. Plus, this video has got some cool Japanese letters on it.

First thing that comes to mind for me. The Mets are like the true opposite of the Cubs as far as the roster is concerned. We have a bunch of young position players who are absolute studs, and the Mets have a bunch of young starting pitchers who are just as filthy. We’ve got a pretty old rotation, whereas the veterans on the Mets are some of the top bats. But importantly, the Mets – minus Bartolo – are kids. Hell, the managers are even cut from different clothes. Maddon is a loose, sorta new school guy, while Terry Collins is pretty old school.

All this differently-similar stuff (completely made up term) to me suggests that this is the matchup to pay attention to throughout the year. These teams are going to play each other in the playoffs. That, folks, is a guarantee. Chalk it up. So pay attention.

HOME RUNS 

 

I think its going to be a blast watching our guys jack homers for a full season. We got treated to mere glimpses last year. This season is going to be a slugfest in Wrigley. Gonna be more homers hit this year than when Sosa was doin’ it (Cubs hit 160 homers in ’98, the year Sosa had 66). Kind of a lot, considering another dude hit 30 and two more hit about 20. But I think this team is more than capable. They have like 8 guys who crush the ball, and a few of those (Bryant, Rizzo, Heyward, Schwarber) have potential to put up 30+. Then you throw in the Solers and Fowlers and Zobrists of the world, and bang! You’ve got some numbers.

Obviously the dark side of talking about home run production from your offense is that it kinda makes you think about how many your pitching staff will give up. I’ll tell you right now; it won’t come down to how many our rotation gives up. Its all about the pen. The boys have got to keep the ball in the yard. But we aren’t gonna worry about that for now, let’s just see how it plays out.

TRADE DEADLINE

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(Really questionable pic, I know. I’m sure someone gave it to Theo for this one, but nonetheless he’s a deal maker. Guy makes deals.)

I’ll make this the last thing because we have lives folks. We get an extra day this year. Because it falls on a Sunday, the deadline has been moved from July 31 to August 1, giving teams an extra 24 hours to deal. The reason I bring it up, is because the Cubs are stockpiled with trade ammo. Plus, Theo said he would be down to make a big deal, said the organization built space in the budget for that purpose, and has a history of big moves like the Nomar Garciaparra trade.

I’m not going to offer any speculation just yet, but I will soon. So stay tuned.

Cubs @ Angels. 10pm ESPN. Let’s freaking do this.

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