Cubs Open Up Play Against Their Rival; and Other Bullets.

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Chicago Cubs outfielder Kyle Schwarber watches as he launches a ball out of Wrigley Field against the Cardinals.

The Chicago Cubs are traveling to St. Louis to play against their rival, the St. Louis Cardinals, as they look to start another great season.

Although the Cubs lead the all time series against the Cardinals, it seems that St. Louis a lways has the last laugh. Coming into last year the Cardinals heavily out numbered the Cubs in World Series’ titles with the Cardinals having 11 titles and the cubs only having 2.

The Cubs knew that they had what it took last year to go to the World Series and win, and that is exactly what they did. With the Cubs winning the World Series and the Cardinals not making the playoffs it looks like the script might have flipped.

Chicago is coming into Sunday night’s game looking at a new season and hopefully another deep playoff run. How nice would it be to start the season with a series win over their rival.

Chicago Cubs pitcher Jon Lester will get the start for the Cubs on Sunday night, and he will be facing Carlos Martinez.  Carlos is coming off of his best year so far in the majors as he pitched almost 200 innings posting a 3.04 ERA, but he will have to face the big lefty (Jon Lester) for the Chicago Cubs. Lester is also coming off of one of his best years as he would go 19-5 and post a 2.44 ERA. If you look back to last year I would say Jon Lester would end up with the win, but since it is the first game of the year you never know how either pitcher will pitch. Even if Lester does not have his best game, I think the Cubs offense and bullpen will pick him up.

One of the Cubs main struggles last year was their bullpen, but with some new pieces the Cubs look to be better coming out of the pen. In the off season the cubs would go out and get pitchers Wade Davis and Koji Uehara, and they can both be huge coming in for the Cubs. Wade Davis had a great year last year for the Kansas City Royals as he posted a 1.87 ERA and 27 saves. The other big piece for the cubs bullpen is Koji Uehara, who has been in the MLB since 2009 and since then he has posted a career 2.53 ERA. One downside to Uehara is that last year  in 50 appearances out of the bullpen for the Boston Red Soxs, he posted a 3.45 ERA with seven saves and and 18 holds.  Other then Davis and Uehara the Cubs have some strong relievers and closers including Hector Rondon, Carl Edwards, Jr., and Mike Montgomery.

With Kyle Schwarber back in the Cubs lineup they look to have an even better offensive performance than last year. Last season’s offense was a little streaky as they would have series where they would outscore their opponent by 15 plus, and would also go a week or two struggling to score. The Cubs hope that this year they can stay more consistent at the plate.  The Cubs top of the order will include some big names like Ben Zobrist, Javier Baez, Kyle Schwarber, Addison Russell, Anthony Rizzo, and reigning MVP winner Kris Bryant.

The Cubs will also put out a good defense this year as they will have young stars Addison Russell and Javier Baez in the infield and 27 year old Jason Heyward in the outfield. Javier Baez has gained a lot of publicity as of late as he demonstrated in the World Baseball Classic showcasing his freakish athletic ability. Addison Russell has been a huge contribution to the Cubs as he seems to make a highlight reel every week. Last, but not least, is Jason Heyward. Heyward was not great on offense but his athletic ability to track down balls and catch them makes Joe Maddon have to keep him in the game.

The Cubs open up play Sunday night against the Cards at 7:35pm Central Time.

 

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