Sunday, March 30, 2008

Chicago Cubs baseball preview

by Steve

The Cubbies won the NL Central in '07 and it seems unlikely they will be crowned Central champs again in 2008. There are questions scattered throughout, CF, RF, closer, the 3-5 spots in the rotation. Expectations are always high in Chicago for some reason, but these lovable losers will continue to be that, losers.

Derek Lee is a premier first baseman in this league. He is certainly not a question any where he is batting or playing defense. Mark Derosa on the other hand, might be ready for age and a general lack of skill to catch up to him a bit in '08. If he hits .290+ out of the second base position it will be a good year for him. Ryan Theriot might be due for a breakout season. True no one knows who he is and he is almost 30, and he has 6 career home runs, but there is somethin about this kid I like. Aramis Ramirez is a solid third baseman. Some roid questions surround this dude as he had his lowest home run total last year of any in the previous 4 seasons. Maybe it was just injuries, who knows. Geovany Soto is one of two potentially nasty young guns in the starting line up on the North side in '08. As long as he gets along with Z and continues to hit as I foresee, he will get ROY votes.

Kosuke Fukudome, fuk u dome?! Holy mole-y I love it. I have no idea who this Japanese import is but he is making $12 mil a season for the next 4 years he better be good. "foo-koo-DOUGH-may" Whatever, Felix Pie is starting at center field, finally! Dude has gotten more hype than free lap dance night at the Downer. He is going to struggle early but should be a solid contributor to this team, especially since they have such a potent lineup. Alfonso Soriano strikes out a shit load but he is a straight stick in any line up. He was even good in Washington, now that is proof of talent.

Big Z is a Big beast, as long as he doesn't go loco he will win the Cy Young this season. Anyone would love him at the top of their rotation. Can anyone answer the question as to how good Ted Lilly is? A lot of people ripped the 'tract he got from Chicago last season but he won 7 more than he lost and had a sub 4 ERA. I'm of the opinion that in the NL he is good. Rich Hill is still young and had a solid '07 campaign. If he gives this franchise 195+ innings again this year I guarantee he will win more than eleven this season. Wait wait wait, is Ryan Dempster really #4 in this rotation? Pathetic. What happen to Jason Marquis that he is behind Dempster right now? Must be nice to have a 6+ ERA like Marquis did in '06 then sign a three year $21 mil contract cause he schooled the Mets in the playoffs. Damn I wish I was a pitcher. Wood as the closer? hmmm not sure about that decision.

The end of the rotation is bad but that is not enough of a concern for me to think this team will not compete for the division in '08. The offense is potentially deadly and they will be scorching the Earth all season long. If sweet Lou has another run in him this team will be around in late September. Not sure how that embarrassing playoff appearance last year will effect them early this season, so expect a slow start.

Record 91-71

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