I jokingly told Anno he was never allowed to go to Wrigley Field again because it always seems like the Chicago Cubs don’t do so hot when he’s there. Then again, I’m only 1-0 this season and I’ve seen my fair share of losses during the long rebuild that started under Theo Epstein and Jed Hoyer. So it’ll be a while before I can convince him to just give me the season tickets.
Obviously, everyone is frustrated about today’s loss. Nobody is supposed to feel good about losses, because there are always retrospectives and what-ifs and whatever to talk about in analyzing why/how the Cubs lost. Never mind the perspective or context, every loss is another cry to send this guy down or to trade that guy or to fire the manager (actually, I’m surprised that I haven’t seen that one yet) or to call Starlin Castro lazy (yup, but let’s actually blame that on Anthony Rizzo). It’s necessary to remind folks that the MLB season is 162 games long, of which the Cubs have only just completed 23 games. It’s also necessary to remind folks that the opposition is still composed of professional major league baseball players who aren’t just going to lay down and die because they have to play in Milwaukee. And no matter how good your bullpen is, they’re still going to cough up a run here or there. That’s baseball.
If we’re going to be objective, let’s at least recognize that the Cubs (even the young ones) are still having decent approaches at the plate. They’re going to strike out a ton due to having to adjust to major league pitching, but the youngsters have been taking solid approaches at the plate, and aside from some hiccups that were magnified in certain losses, they’ve mostly been solid on defense.
If we’re going to have a “the sky is falling” attitude about this, then let’s also recognize that the Cubs are still in the lead for the National League wild card chase, and have a chance to close the gap with the St. Louis Cardinals for the division lead when the two teams meet at Busch Stadium this coming week. At 13-10, the Cubs are still “on pace” to win 91-92 games. It’s also worth noting that during the past three years of the Epstein/Hoyer era, there were still instances where a should-have-sucked Cubs team still won series against the should-be-a-juggernaut Cards. Not even getting to 15% through the season, it’s way too early to panic or write anything off, and besides, you would probably prefer the Cubs get all the yips out of the way early rather than when they get to late September.
For now, let’s just tip our hat to former Cubs hero Aramis Ramirez, praise the good baseball gods above that Jean Segura wasn’t seriously injured by an errant Pedro Strop pitch, and chalk this weekend off as a learning experience. I’m still going to be hopeful and I’m reasonably sure the Cubs will be okay.
Losing series to MIL sucks but I think I’ll wait until late August before I slit my wrists. #Cubs
— Rice Cube (@CubicSnarkonia) May 3, 2015
And if anyone should feel terrible, it’s the players themselves…but why dwell on something that already happened when you have 139 games left to make things right?