Writing these blogs is a lot more fun when the team is winning, and after a 2-5 road trip, wins seem very tough to come by these days. But there are still a lot of positives surrounding this team, and unlike the last few years, at least the Cubs are still in a position to compete here in early-May. Here are a few thoughts as the Cubs return home to face the Mets tonight.
1. The St. Louis Cardinals are just a very good organization. We all knew this already. In a way, the 1-3 outcome in St. Louis shouldn't be surprising at all. The Cardinals did just enough to come back and win the first two games, signs of a quality team facing a young team who hasn't learned to win yet. However, at least the goal is now right there in front of every Cubs player. They should collectively be thinking: "We're getting pretty good. But until we're THAT good, we aren't good enough." It's something that could take years to achieve, but at least we know where the bar is set.
2. I have no clue how to fix this bullpen. Luckily, I'm not one of the people being paid to do it. But really, where do they start? If it were as easy as sending Edwin Jackson packing, I'd say do it. However, when Edwin Jackson starts to look like a GOOD option, you're beyond just needing some help. If trading Welington Castillo could bring back a decent reliever, the front office needs to make that happen. I wasn't worried about the lack of pitching depth in the organization until now. We were told the hitters could always be traded for pitchers. It might be time to think about doing that.
3. At 15-15, the team is .500, which seems about right for this team. The Cubs have the talent to beat anyone. But this lineup will strike out a lot, and the bullpen has become an unavoidable wreck lately. For a team that started 13-27 last year, this is still a refreshing change. Fans are just hoping to see more victories starting soon.