In flipping back through posts here from last November – seeing if my memory on when things happened was accurate – I came across a twin set of posts about the future of the Cubs (as of mid-November 2013), here and here. There’s no way to look back on them that won’t look like tooting my own horn (because, *toot* *toot*, I was right about a whole lot), but that’s not why I mention them. Instead, as we sit here this November and look into the Cubs’ future, I think it’s interesting to look back just one year ago and see where things realistically stood. No big moves loomed on the horizon for the Cubs’ offseason, and 2014 was shaping up to look a lot like the two years prior. The only hope at the time was that the Cubs weren’t already planning on punting on 2015, too, and that there would be sufficient development in 2014 to make the following November – the one we’re in now – look more promising.
Now, things look so very different. Big moves do loom on the horizon (and in the recent past, with the addition of Joe Maddon), and 2015, while still not the pinnacle of what the Cubs are building, looks like it has a chance to be very interesting. And 2016, man, looks like it has a chance to be fantastic. It’s a reminder of just how positive, in total, the 2014 year was for the Cubs. The fact that the Cubs finished the year with a positive stretch of play coming from their young core definitely didn’t hurt.
- David Laurila’s Sunday Notes at FanGraphs have a bunch more thoughts from GMs on their own needs, on trends in the game, etc.
- Some point to the Tigers as the new model (like the Yankees) of an aging team with enormous contracts coming to roost in a few years that will cripple them. Is that right, though? Jeff Sullivan takes a look and finds that, while, yes, the Tigers are going to be limited, they will not be hopeless.
- Cubs prospect Dustin Geiger reminds folks, with his characteristic positivity and good humor, that the offseason isn’t just a fun workout-fest for all minor leaguers:
— Dustin Geiger (@D_Geiger) November 11, 2014
- Anthony Rizzo – the Branch Rickey Award winner – is having a great turnout for his charity walk:
— Carrie Muskat (@CarrieMuskat) November 16, 2014
- And one more set of pictures from Twitter while we’re at it. The Wrigley Renovation work has reached “Snow Stage”:
— Wrigley Renovations (@WrigleyRenovate) November 16, 2014
- Please be kind the rest of the way, Mother Nature. Please …