Written By Alex Mueller
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The Chicago Cubs, 2016 World Series champions look to 2017 to further their success. Below are some headlined moves from the 2016–2017 offseason.
Key Departures: Aroldis Chapman, Dexter Fowler, Jason Hammel, David Ross, Jorge Soler and Travis Wood.
Key Arrivals: Wade Davis, Jon Jay, Eddie Butler, Brian Duensing, Koji Uehara and Brett Anderson (Some could say Kyle Schwarber)
Although on paper the Cubs off-season seems to be pretty unproductive with marquee names such as Chapman and Fowler leaving, which will hurt. The addition of Wade Davis sets the closer role and the Jon Jay signing will make for an interesting split role between Jon Jay and Albert Almora Jr. in center field. While most imagine Schwarber or hopefully Heyward can fill in at lead off to help replace the production of Dexter Fowler.
2016 Record= 103–58 (first in NL Central)
2017 Projected Record= 101–60 (first in NL Central)
2017 Projected Line-up:
- Kyle Schwarber (LF)
- Kris Bryant (3B)
- Anthony Rizzo (1B)
- Ben Zobrist (RF)
- Willson Contreras (C )
- Addison Russell (SS)
- Javier Baez (2B)
- Jason Heyward (CF)
Note that this lineup does not include Jon Jay or Albert Almora Jr. The Cubs will utilize splits to the max this year with so many options, for example Javier Baez is not the everyday second basemen as well as you cant expect Zobrist to play Right everyday leading to openings in the outfield for these 2 players.
2017 Projected Rotation
- Jon Lester
- Jake Arrieta
- Kyle Hendricks
- John Lackey
- Mike Montgomery
- Brett Anderson**
** Note do not expect the Cubs to use a 6 man rotation to start the year he would just fill in as the next man in.
2017 Projected Bullpen
Closer= Wade Davis
Setup= Cj Edwards
Setup= Pedro Strop
Setup= Hector Rondon
Relief= Justin Grimm
Relief= Brain Duensing
Relief= Rob Zastryzny
2017 Bold Predictions
- Continues to be the best team in baseball
- Jason Heyward rebounds and puts together a great campaign
- Team aqcuires Chris Archer at the deadline
- Tommy La Stella is traded away at the deadline
- Kyle Schwarber completely mashes and finishes top 15 in MVP voting