2014 MLB Preview and Rankings: #26 Chicago Cubs

Published: Mar 09, 2014 17:24pm EDT
By Michael Owen, Sports Writer for Konsume Sports

Please Note: This article was updated Mar 09, 2014 @ 05:24pm EDT


Spring training games have already begun and Opening Day is still a few weeks away, but the rite of passage that comes every Spring and finally getting to see actual ballgames going on in Florida and Arizona is enough to get any fan going.

There is still a lot of work to be done for some teams, position battles, last minute signings and so on. While one of the best things about Spring Training is that when it starts, anything can happen and every team has a chance.  Unfortunately for many teams those hopes can be shattered and lost by May.

As we begin playing ball, we have a pretty good idea of where each team stands and while each season is unpredictable, things can change at the drop of an Ace lefties torn rotator cuff.  

Over the next few weeks we'll give you a preseason ranking and analysis of each team daily.  feel free to disagree and voice your opinion

So with with all that being said, here we go:

26. Chicago Cubs 

 It's going to be a long summer if you're a baseball fan in Chicago. As noted I have the White Sox coming in near the bottom and one shouldn't expect much more from the Cubs. 

Hope is not lost however.  Well, maybe it is for 2014, but it's not totally lost for the future..  In a trend that you'll see very prevalent here at the bottom of the rankings (although the jury is still out on the Marlins), things are looking up. 

The Cubs farm system is chock full of fantastic position players ready to make their move to the big league but have a shortage of impact arms ready.  That will change this summer.

Of the teams at the bottom of this list, the Cubs are one of the few teams that have legitimate, trade worthy players already on the big league roster. Jeff Samarzija, already the subject of many trade rumors, will head up the starting rotation, at least thru July.  In addition, the rotation also has Edwin Jackson, Jake Arrieta and Jason Hammel, all beginning to approach journeyman status, but all also very serviceable, not to mention, very tradeable.  It's feasible that by September, barring injuries, the only member left from the starting rotation in April will be All Star Travis Wood.

From the offensive side,, they do have talent. !st bagger Anthony Rizzo had some decent numbers last year (23 HR/80 RBI/.323 OBP) but lacked consistency at times. Shortstop Starlin Castro was pretty bad last year as well, batting only .245 with and abysmal .284 OBP needs to be a little better if he's ever going to live up to his reputation.  The real kid to watch though would be 23 year old outfielder Junior Lake.  If the Cubs can get a full season of development from him, left field will likely be locked down for years to come. 

Again, another team with a great outlook. With Theo Epstein going into his 3rd year in charge of the Cubs he has positioned the Cubs to be the next gen Red Sox.  Unfortunately though, as for 2014, you might as well start saying wait til next year (but really, the next year after next year.)

Prediction: 70-92


                                         ***PREVIOUS RANKINGS***

30. Houston Astros  62-100




29. Miami Marlins 64-98




28. Chicago White Sox 66-96




27. Minnesota Twins 67-95


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