Chicago Cubs Are Eliminated from the Postseason
The Chicago Cubs are eliminated from the postseason following a Milwaukee Brewers win over the Cincinnati Reds. After having plenty of momentum going into September, the Cubs slumped during the last two weeks of the season which included getting swept in a four-game series against the St. Louis Cardinals.
Throughout the season, the National League Central race has been tight. Unfortunately for the Cubs, the Brewers and Cardinals both managed to clinch postseason spots. This will be the first year the Cubs have missed the playoffs since 2014, which is seen as a disappointment to many.
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It would be easy to point at the last series against the Cardinals as where everything went wrong. However, the Cubs have losing records to both the Reds and Brewers. While Wrigley Field has been great for the Cubs this season, they are 31-45 on the road. Not to mention the Cubs are 4 – 9 in extra-inning games and 19 – 27 in one-run games.
Also, the Cubs had a losing record of 37 – 44 against teams above 500. In a race where every game matters, the little things are vital in order to reach the playoffs.
Although the Cubs were headed in the right direction, the Milwaukee Brewers won sixteen of their last eighteen games. The Cubs are carried by their stars Kris Bryant, Anthony Rizzo, Javier Baez, and Willson Contreras. With additions like Nicholas Castellanos providing the team a boost in their depth.
Up until June, Craig Kimbrel sat out until he could find a contract that would suit his needs. While he was a couple of months behind everyone else, Kimbrel has struggled down the stretch for the Cubs. Similar to the New York Mets, its an issue when the closer has an ERA above five. Only Brandon Kintzler has an ERA under three from the Cubs bullpen.
It is likely that Joe Maddon will not be back next season as manager of the Cubs. His contract does expire at the end of the season and the team may look to find someone else. Cubs fans are split on bringing back Maddon, despite leading them to a World Series. With a young and exciting core, this team could likely be back in the playoffs next season.