I have started the very long process of digging out from under a many week backlog of emails and texts and other extremely nice messages from a period that featured not only a Cubs championship, but also my birthday and a well-received write-up in the Tribune. If you sent me something in the past few weeks, it’s possible you’ll finally receive a response from me at some point soon! (Sorry.)
- I’m still not quite yet ready to discuss the dynasty thing. I understand it’s the logical place to go with a Cubs team this good and young, after having won the World Series. For me, not only do I still want to enjoy the championship a little bit, but I also recognize how much work goes into preparing a roster that can withstand the regular season and make the playoffs (let alone have the composition and, let’s be honest, good fortune to make a deep run in the playoffs). So, then, when I’m ready to focus on the future (which, given the options and qualifying offer deadlines that kick in tomorrow, will be as soon as this week), my focus will probably skew much more toward 2017, specifically, and constructing a quality on-paper roster. Questions of dynasty, for me, are certainly interesting, but we can kinda get there when we get there.
- That said, I know it’s an interesting topic for folks, so I’m not going to ignore it right now when it’s on a lotta folks’ lips. David Schoenfield discusses the dynasty question for the Cubs, and his work underscores how unpredictable it can be, even when a team on paper looks so good and so young. I don’t think it’s too difficult for us to see already where the biggest questions for this Cubs team will be going forward in the next three to five years: where is the pitching to match the hitting going to come from? There are certainly some intriguing arms in the lower levels of the farm system, but far less than your typical organization with dynastic aspirations. Near-term, you can argue that 2017 looks OK, but beyond that, huge questions loom. Of course, if the Cubs continue to do what they’ve done on the pitching side – mostly patchwork through thoughtful trades and excellent free agent signings – they probably look forward to the 2018 free agent class, which looks very strong (even after the untimely passing of Jose Fernandez, who might have headlined that class).
- Whatever your take on the framing device (in short and paraphrased, the Cubs’ world championship is the final straw in the are-analytics-really-all-that-important debate), this is still a very interesting read from Rany Jazayerli, as they always are.
- Relatedly, Ken Davidoff gets into what Theo Epstein has accomplished with the Red Sox and the Cubs. When he first joined the Cubs, among the things we would remark to each other off-hand: if he does the trick with the Cubs, Epstein is a sure-fire Hall of Famer. Well, here we are, and he is. Already. At age 42. From here, the potential to become an inner circle executive Hall of Famer – sure, that’s a thing – is the next stop.
- The New York Times was ready to use a reimagining of a classic Normal Rockwell painting if the Cubs had lost Game Seven of the World Series:
— Marc Grandi (@MarcGrandi) November 5, 2016
- A few Cubs headed to Disney World this weekend, and showed up in one of the parades (thanks to Jason for sending this along):
— Jason Rees (@CubbieBlue5) November 6, 2016
- A Cubs tribute from Northwestern yesterday, and another from Illinois:
— Adam Hoge (@AdamHoge) November 5, 2016
— Illini Football (@IlliniFootball) November 5, 2016
- And Hamilton (the musical) also celebrated the Cubs:
— Patrick Vassel (@PDV) November 4, 2016
- I know this is a factoid most of you have heard already, but for those of you haven’t: Mike Montgomery did not have a big league save when he took the ball for the final out in the World Series, which, of course, earned him a save.
- If you missed it earlier, Michael offered a write-up on the Jason Hammel option decision, which is coming soon. And the Cubs had a trio of studs dancing on ‘Saturday Night Live.’
- You pre-Thanksgiving appropriate deal of the day on Amazon: an oil-less turkey fryer is 35% off. Aaaaaand I’m hungry.