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These Cubs are here to stay. Sure, they were flat out average and boring in the first half, but it certainly feels like they have turned a corner in this post all-star break world. They entered the break 2 games under .500 and a few games back in the division, looking like they were in desperate need for a shake up, and that’s exactly what they got.
Looking like they must have needed that rest, they have won 6 straight out of the break, are 4 games over .500, and are just 1 game back of the Brewers who are just as cold as the Cubs are hot, losing 5 in a row. Both of these teams were in need of starting pitching, and the Cubs struck first, landing a block buster deal with the cross-town rival White Sox for stud lefty Jose Quintana. Small side note on this deal, adding a lefty seems like a bigger bonus, given that the front-runner Dodgers struggle big time against left handed pitchers. Quintana came out hot in his first start, giving the Cubs a badly needed spark, pitching 7 shutout innings, racking up 12 strikeouts and 0 walks to earn a win against the Orioles, making it seem like, for the time being, that this was a trade worth making.
That isn’t all the Cubs have going for them, as it seems like they are finally getting healthy and clicking as a team. Javy Baez and Willson Contreras have been on fire in the 2nd half, and it is just making this team look more and more dangerous. Zobrist and Heyward are finally healthy, Hendricks looks to be coming back soon (he just through 5 perfect innings the other night in a rehab start), and everything seems to be running smoothly, with the exception of Kris Bryant’s nasty looking pinky injury. The first half Cubs are a thing of the past, and I think we should treat them that way. Time to forget it and move on.
All in all, things are trending in a very positive direction for the Cubs, and I only see it getting better. Ultimately this team is en route to winning the division and will make some noise heading into October, especially if they can land another starter (they’ve been linked to Darvish and Gray). I’m sticking with the prediction I made a few days ago on twitter, the Cubs will not drop back below .500 this season.
By @ChiCubsCoverage on Twitter