Chicago Cubs fans had to wait 108 years before their team finally won a World Series title in 2016. With Opening Day upon us, MLB Insider Jon Morosi indicated Monday on The Jim Rome Show that the wait for another Cubs title might be a little shorter this time around.
“You look at their lineup and their roster, that infield is a dream infield with such youth, they’re all two-way players, offensively-defensively. Their pitching is so great, their bullpen, obviously they swapped out (Aroldis) Chapman for (Wade) Davis but still very strong back there,” Morosi said. “And it truly is, I think, the Cubs against the other 29, from a standpoint of how they’re viewed as the overwhelming favorites. But that being said there’s a reason why the Yankees seventeen years ago were the last team to repeat. It’s really hard.”
Morosi said the Cubs’ pitching will determine if they’re able to be the first team to repeat since the Yankees won three straight from 1998-2000.
“We’re going to see, at some point in time, [Jon] Lester and [Jake] Arrieta and [Kyle] Hendricks, [John} Lackey of course, he’s up there in baseball age as well, the bill is going to come due at some point,” Morosi said. “The question is if the Cubs have enough pitching depth in the minor league to sustain them through that or do they make a really bold move with their farm system.
“They have a young prospect, Ian Happ, had a very good spring training. You will certainly hear that name a lot in the months of June and July as they maybe look for reinforcements, but I think my question is just the attrition on the pitching that’s the biggest reason why it’s been 17 years since the last repeat World Series champion.”
Morosi said the Cubs do have the talent to sustain their success to possibly stack a few World Series titles over the next few years.
“When you think about dynasty, why it wouldn’t necessarily be every single year but maybe what the [San Francisco] Giants did, with three titles in five years, or maybe the Cubs win three in five years, three in six years which I still think in baseball nowadays would qualify as a dynasty,” Morosi said.
Morosi believes that based on the Cubs’ front office track record, you’d think they’d do their best to replenish the majors with their own farm system.
“Theo Epstein talked before, when he was in Boston with Jed Hoyer at the time, about building a self-sustaining organization, where basically the minor leagues were so good that they didn’t have to go out there and sign expensive free agents. The Cubs want to do that. Theo Epstein wants to do that,” Morosi said. “Now of course, he is going to have the resources especially with the refurbished Wrigley Field and that whole area around the ball park there going to be able to sign major free agents, but Theo’s dream, I think this is important to point this out, his dream is to have that home grown self-sustained group like you’re seeing in Boston now, where the guys that were drafted around that time when the Red Sox guys were still there, the likes of Mookie Betts and the rest of that group, there’s now that belief the Cubs can create the same thing, and Theo and Jed Hoyer would love to have that internal young group that does become, as you point out, a dynasty in the future.”