Season Outlook: Chicago Cubs

Projected 2017 Starting Lineup:

  1. Kyle Schwarber – Left Fielder
  2. Kris Bryant – 3rd baseman
  3. Anthony Rizzo – 1st baseman
  4. Ben Zobrist – 2nd baseman
  5. Addison Russell – Shortstop
  6. Willson Contreras – Catcher
  7. Jason Heyward – Right Fielder
  8. Jon Jay – Center Fielder

Projected 2017 Starting Rotation:

  1. Jon Lester
  2. Jake Arrieta
  3. Kyle Hendricks
  4. John Lackey
  5. Brett Anderson

Season Outlook:

The Chicago Cubs are probably the best team in the MLB heading into 2017 as they are coming off of their first world series championship in 108 years. Also, the core of the team remains almost completely intact except for the loss of center fielder Dexter Fowler which is a big subtraction from last year’s team. Kris Bryant and Anthony Rizzo are the consistent offensive producers for the Cubs. However, Chicago’s lineup is so deep that they are projected to have Jason Heyward hitting 7th in the lineup despite being paid a $184 million contract prior to last season. Chicago’s offense is extremely dangerous, but their pitching staff might be an even bigger strength. Jon Lester, Jake Arrieta, and Kyle Hendricks are three pitchers that could legitimately win the Cy Young award next season. John Lackey and Brett Anderson aren’t bad options at the back of the rotation either as they both have plenty of experience in the MLB. The Cubs pitching staff was very good in the postseason last season and expect Lester, Hendricks, and Arrieta to do the same thing in 2017. Chicago’s bullpen is a little bit different than last season as they traded for one of the top closers in the MLB by acquiring Wade Davis from Kansas City. Also, Hector Rendon and Koji Uehara are former closers that should be good setup men in the bullpen. The only weakness that the Cubs have is in center field with Jon Jay. However, I would be shocked if the Cubs don’t make a deep postseason run once again in 2017 because they have basically the same roster as last season.

Prediction: 1st place in NL Central

kris-bryant

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