Sunday, September 25, 2005

A look ahead to next year.

Well, another as another season plods mercilessly towards its end, we Cub fans once again look ahead to next year. But aside from speculating on possible off season moves, there's not much interesting going on for the Chicago cubs.

Two things I want to get off my chest
#1 Derrek Lee deserves the MVP more than Andruw Jones. Andruw Jones has had a great season, but not nearly as extraordinary as Andruw Jones. Aside from his franchise record 51 homeruns, the rest of his game wasn't anything special at all, especially his .263 batting average.
Albert Pujols has certainly had an extraordinary season and he just barely edges out D-Lee for my vote. Lee's numbers are just slightly better, and Lee is the superior defender and baserunner, Pujols is a very worthy MVP. He is simply the best hitter in baseball. He was more consistent than Lee over the course of the season, had much fewer strikeouts, and didn't see as many good pitches as Lee because he is so feared.
Although the MVP isn't supposed to take past seasons into consideration, it's hard to ignore the fact that were it not for Barry Bonds, Pujols would already have 2 or 3 MVPs under his belt.

And another thing! As much as I'd like to see them collapse, the White Sox aren't chokers, and they aren't the 69 Cubs. I wish the media would shut up about this "epic collapse."
The white sox haven't had a monumental collapse. They played over their heads the first part of the season, and seemed to have almost everything go their way. But they were never a strong team offensively, and their pitchers got off to a pace that was impossible to sustain.
It shouldn't be a surprise to anyone that the Sox have leveled off some and become more of the .600 team that they should be. They aren't supposed to be a .750 juggernaut. When you have the Cleveland Indians barreling along virtually undefeated for weeks at a time, it's impossible for the tribe not to gain ground, no matter what the white sox do.
A choke is when a team plays below it's ability, and beats themselves. It's when a team does much worse than should be expected from them, like, say, the 2004 Cubs.

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