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3/25/15: This year, it is the Chicago Cubs turn to come under fire for not starting one of their top prospects in the majors. They plan to have third baseman Kris Bryant start the season in the minors for a few weeks, then bring him up to the big leagues. That will allow the Cubs to postpone one year of major league eligibility, so they get to keep him for an extra year for the cost of a few weeks now. It makes sense to do so, though many, including Bryant's agent are upset about it. He is hardly the first player this has happened to and will not be the last.
3/18/15: The Chicago Cubs faithful are ready for the 2015 season. They want to finally be able to claim that it is 'Their Year' - something they have not been able to say since just after the Gilded Age. They got a glimpse of the future last week when prospects Jorge Soler, Javier Baez and Kris Bryant hit home runs consecutively for the extremely rare back to back to back. As exciting as that was, the Cubs lost the game. That does not matter since it was spring training. More alarming is that they had to shut down pitcher Jacob Turner for a month as he was competing for a rotation spot.
3/11/15: While signing ace Jon Lester was the big pitching move the Cubs made this offseason, it is not the only one. They were in on getting James Shields, who admitted that his decision came down to Chicago and San Diego (he chose to go to the rock star Padres). Just last week, the team signed veteran pitcher Phil Coke to a minor league deal. He will likely serve as bullpen depth. He is effective as a specialist - that specialty being pitching to left handed batters. If the Cubs can keep him only in those situations, then he could be an effective arm again, even in the majors.
3/4/15: It is always interesting when a disgraced player comes back to be a coach or advisor. There are always doubts that he is teaching kids the wrong thing or concerns that his presence is a bad influence. In any case, the Cubs made Manny Ramirez a hitting coach in the minor leagues last season - and he earned rave reviews. This season he will be a consultant to the Cubs at the big league level. He actually played for new manager John Maddon a few years ago in Tampa. That was, until, he was about to be hit with a long suspension for PED use and then he left the team. Regardless, they like him in Chicago, and honestly, the guy could rake in his day.
2/25/15: We are not too far off from actually seeing what the new look Cubs will be like on the field. They have been pretty active in getting free agents - not just pitcher John Lester, but other guys like Dexter Fowler and Miquel Montero. Basically adding veterans to add to their talented core of players. They have lost a lot of games over the past two seasons and this is the season they are expected to break through. Currently, they are expected to win about 83 games, which would put them over .500 for the season with a chance for a wild-card spot.
2/5/15: It is never easy for the Cubs. The team had move mountains to be able to renovate the bleachers at Wrigley Field, a move that angered the owners of the rooftop stands outside the stadium. Then came news that the construction was behind schedule and would not be finished in time for the start of the season. Now, the reports state that the renovations has forced legions of rats into the Wrigleyville neighborhood. Rats are a common problem in major metropolitan areas, but this situation begs the question of if hundreds of rats were simply living in the old stadium. At least the Cubs organization was ranked with the best farm system.
1/28/15: The Cubs organization and indeed the City of Chicago is mourning the loss of legend Ernie Banks. Banks, also known as Mr. Cub, was among the greatest ambassadors of the game and hall of famer, passed away at age 83. Banks joined the Cubs in 1954 and was the team's first African-American player. He was runner up for rookie of the year and ended up spending 19 years in Chicago. He finished his career with 512 homer runs and a stat line of .274/.330/.500. He has been the face of the franchise since he retired and will certainly be missed.
1/21/15: It is January, so players are getting ready to get back into the playing again, which means two things: 1. A lot of talk about player X being in "the best shape of his life", and 2. A lot of false bravado. The Cubs are not short on that winter bravery, perhaps because they are armed with a few new weapons and a new manager. Mike Rizzo even went as far as to say the Cubs would win the National League Central this year. Chicago is certainly headed in the right direction, but established teams like St. Louis, Cincinnati, and Pittsburgh may have something to say about that.
1/14/15: The Cubs have their own way of doing things and those unorthodox methods have resulted in exactly zero World Series Championships in the past 108 years. It was not that long ago that Sammy Sosa was the toast of Chicago when he hit 60 or more home runs for three straight years. He is not as welcome as he used to be and was not invited (again) to the annual Cubs Convention. Apparently he has some fences to mend before he will be welcome back. In other news, the Cubs' spring training facility will take the sponsor name of a company that makes devices that help toilets flush.
1/7/15: The Cubs made a lot of noise this offseason, setting the expectations for the next few years at sky-high levels. The biggest acquisitions were manager Joe Maddon and ace Jon Lester. Lester will cost them $155 million over six years. So are the Cubs now contenders? Fans and media say yes, but history says no. Remember, they have stumbled in the past in handing out big money for name brand free agents. Chicago is doing a good job of developing prospects and will soon get a windfall of cash from their TV contract, so it is possible that the Cubs' time is coming soon.
12/3/14: The Cubs continue to add to their organization, the latest being the addition of Henry Blanco as the team's quality assurance coach. It seems that Chicago is the destination of choice these days, and for good reason. The team has many prospects that are ready to compete at the big league level, not to mention a highly sought-after head coach. The Cubs are also flush with cash and look to be making some big moves this offseason to get coveted free agents, which may include ace pitcher Max Scherzer. Cubby-Nation has to feel pretty good about the upcoming year, and pitchers and catchers report to spring training in just a couple of months.
11/19/14: The Chicago Cubs are a fascinating team to watch this offseason. Since Theo Epstein took over operations a few years ago, they have stressed developing their own prospects to create a sustainable, competitive team. Indeed, the Cubs have among the deepest farm systems in the majors with a lot of top prospects. However, and maybe this is due to their new lucrative TV deal, they seem to be targeting all the top (expensive) free agents on the market. That includes pitchers Max Scherzer and Jon Lester. They are also, reportedly, trying to acquire Jordan Zimmerman from Washington. It was not that long ago that the Cubs pledged $300 million to big names in hopes of contending. That failed miserably, which is a major reason why the Cubs have been at the bottom of the league in wins for a while now. Those that do not learn from history...
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Next 20 Games
Chicago Cubs Schedule & Key Dates
Opening Day / Chicago Cubs First Game 2015
Chicago Cubs Regular Season Last Game 2015
Chicago Cubs Spring Training Beginning 2015
Chicago Cubs Upcoming Games Schedule
|Mar 27, 2015||Chicago White Sox vs Chicago Cubs|
|Mar 28, 2015||Colorado Rockies vs Chicago Cubs|
|Mar 28, 2015||Chicago Cubs vs Cincinnati Reds|
|Mar 29, 2015||Chicago Cubs vs Kansas City Royals|
|Mar 30, 2015||San Francisco Giants vs Chicago Cubs|
|Mar 31, 2015||Chicago Cubs vs Texas Rangers|
Chicago Cubs Past Games Schedule and Chicago Cubs Scores
|Mar 26, 2015||Spring Training: Los Angeles Angels - Chicago Cubs||8 - 4|
|Mar 25, 2015||Spring Training: Chicago Cubs - Seattle Mariners||2 - 3|
|Mar 24, 2015||Spring Training: Chicago Cubs - Oakland Athletics||2 - 14|
|Mar 22, 2015||Spring Training: San Diego Padres - Chicago Cubs||6 - 1|
|Mar 21, 2015||Spring Training: Seattle Mariners - Chicago Cubs||10 - 12|
|Mar 18, 2015||Spring Training: Chicago Cubs - Los Angeles Dodgers||7 - 5|
|Mar 17, 2015||Spring Training: Kansas City Royals - Chicago Cubs||3 - 4|
|Mar 16, 2015||Spring Training: Chicago Cubs - San Diego Padres||0 - 7|
|Mar 15, 2015||Spring Training: Cincinnati Reds - Chicago Cubs||1 - 2|
|Mar 14, 2015||Chicago Cubs - Milwaukee Brewers||10 - 5|
|Mar 14, 2015||Spring Training: Oakland Athletics - Chicago Cubs||1 - 3|
|Mar 13, 2015||Spring Training: Cleveland Indians - Chicago Cubs||7 - 4|
|Mar 12, 2015||Spring Training: Chicago Cubs - Los Angeles Angels||9 - 10|
|Mar 11, 2015||Spring Training: Los Angeles Dodgers - Chicago Cubs||3 - 4|
|Mar 10, 2015||Spring Training: Chicago Cubs - Cleveland Indians||6 - 10|
|Mar 9, 2015||Spring Training: San Diego Padres - Chicago Cubs||6 - 3|
|Mar 8, 2015||Spring Training: Texas Rangers - Chicago Cubs||6 - 4|