Ever since MLB expanded to 30 teams in 1998, things have been a little different.
The move to add the Arizona Diamondbacks and Tampa Bay Devil Rays brought with it a new alignment for teams.
It also brought about a draft to help fill the rosters of these expansion teams.
However, it also was a starting point for the Chicago Cubs and a record they currently hold.
But it’s also a record they are dangerously close to losing when the 2023 season begins.
The record they are close to losing is the most strikeouts by an MLB team since the 1998 expansion.
Most pitching strikeouts since MLB went to 30 teams in '98:
— Codify (@CodifyBaseball) January 17, 2023
With 36 strikeouts between them and the Los Angeles Dodgers, this could be the season the Cubs slip into second place.
These legendary pitchers were strikeout machines, and part of an elite group in Chicago.
When they were together during the Cubs 2004 season, they helped lead the team to 1,346 strikeouts for the season.
The team’s 1,346 strikeouts got them the top spot for strikeouts in 2004.
Their 2005 season also saw the team holding the top strikeout spot with 1,256 strikeouts.
However, the Cubs have lacked strike-out pitching, as they have been around the middle of the pack their last five seasons.
Their inability to keep up with the growing number of strikeouts in the league now threatens their record.
With the Dodgers having the most dangerous starting pitchers, it’s a matter of time before the Cubs slip down to second place.