After winning a World Series just five years ago, most Chicago Cubs fans didn’t imagine what was in store for them this year.
Everybody knew that, for a lack of awareness, planning, or simply because that’s the way things worked out in negotiations and talks, most of the Cubs’ stellar performers were going to hit free agency after this season.
It All Happened So Fast
But after a successful April and May, the Cubs were competing, contending for a prime spot in the National League Central division.
By June and July, it was evident they weren’t going anywhere because their roster, while containing a few stars, was flawed, or just not as good as other NL powerhouses.
And while the decision of trading stars such as Anthony Rizzo, Javier Baez, Kris Bryant, and Craig Kimbrel; and other key contributors such as Joc Pederson, Ryan Tepera, and Andrew Chafin, certainly came as a surprise to some, it was the right move given that most of them were going to test the market after the season.
The Cubs did replenish a bad farm system, and turned it into a mediocre one with some projection.
While they improved their young core of players for the future, and took a bottom-tier farm system to more of a middle-of-the-pack system, the major league roster was left in shambles.
The Cubs are one of the most traditional franchises in MLB, and while they aren’t exactly the winningest organization in history, they are usually competitive, and fans know that.
Seeing the Cubs hit the reset button is certainly not easy for some hardcore followers, and it’s hard to fully comprehend and accept the idea of starting over and not being a top contender for at least two or three years.
Fans Were Sad To See Their Idols Go
The hardest part for fans, however, is seeing their stars, those that came up to the big leagues in a Cubs uniform and endured the bad times before reaching the glory in 2016, playing and competing for making it to the postseason with another uniform.
The Cubs’ fan base certainly thought that Bryant was going to be a Cub for life.
Rizzo, who had already signed an extension several years ago, was also a fan favorite and always defended Chicago with pride.
Baez, while a flawed hitter with issues to consistently get on base, was one of the most exciting players in MLB and a truly top defender.
That’s why fans should still be in a state of shock: it all happened too fast, and decisions were made in a short period of time.
As a Tigers fan, I get the rebuild process and luckily we are finally making it out of the rebuild and hoping we compete for a WC spot next year and sign some big time FA in this offseason. But yeah, seeing the Cubs go full on rebuild is rough.
— Ian Penix (@Tigers_in_22) August 27, 2021
The Cubs were 50-55 on July 30, the day of the trade deadline.
After dealing the aforementioned players, they are now 56-73.
That’s right: the decimated, post-deadline 2021 Chicago Cubs are 6-18, one of the worst marks in the league since then.
There are, to be fair, very few reasons for Cubs fans to tune in and see games, but they should watch the development of a few players with an eye on 2022 and 2023: Heuer, Patrick Wisdom, Rafael Ortega, Adbert Alzolay, and others.
They must still be in a state of shock, but it will pass.
All I feel is pain 😞 pic.twitter.com/bkbF4xUqXb
— Cubs Zone ™️ (@CubsZone) August 22, 2021
Time cures everything, and Chicago could be back in the thick of things in a couple of years.