A little bit ago, Phil Rogers gave a bit of a run-down of the moves made (or not made) by the other NL Central teams so far this off-season. And upon doing so, Rogers is ready to declare the obvious: outside of the Cubs, the NL Central is pretty pathetibad (he didn’t declare that last word, though. I made it up. I need credit and attention).

When the Cubs sign Bradley and their fans talk about going into the playoffs with a balanced lineup, it’s more than provincial arrogance talking. It’s an understanding the Cubs figure to enter 2009 as a prohibitive favorite in their division.

Under Lou Piniella, and backed by heavy spending from ownership, the Cubs have gone 41 games above .500 the last two seasons. The rest of the Central is a combined 65 games below, with Milwaukee emerging as first runner-up while St. Louis and Houston slid back into the pack after a long run at the top.

Nothing seems likely to change this off-season. Chicago Tribune.

I agree, but alas, I’m a Cubs fan. I expect guys like Ryan Ludwick to happen, and I expect enough of them to happen for at least one other Central team to make the division anything but a cakewalk.