The Chicago Cubs have won the first two games in their four game series against the Washington Nationals to improve their record to a Major League best 22-6. When the season was getting under way most if not all of the media expected the Cubs to be good and they haven’t disappointed. At first the Cubs winning was viewed as nothing but positive since it’s the Cubs and everyone knows the story. No World Series win since 1908. Then as odd as it might seem as the Cubs continued to win these early season games the media started to question if the Cubs where that good or if it was there schedule that has been allowing them to put up this type of record; so this four game series against the Nationals was seen as a big test for the Cubs.
The Cubs opened the 2016 season with an odd 2-game series against the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim. Behind the starting pitching of Jake Arrieta and Jon Lester the Angels didn’t score in either game and the Cubs started off the season 2-0. The Angels are currently 13-16 and weren’t the challenge the media thought they’d be for the Cubs. The Cubs stayed out West for a 4-game series against the Arizona Diamondbacks. The Diamondbacks looked to have won the off season, but that didn’t translate into this series as the Cubs took 3 of 4. Arizona is currently 13-18 and in last place in the National League West; so they apparently weren’t the match up the experts where looking for the Cubs to face either. After their trip out West, the Cubs came home for their home opener and a 3-game series against the Cincinnati Reds, which the Cubs swept. While it’s difficult to sweep a team this wasn’t much of a surprise to anyone. The Reds did get of to a good start to the season, but are now 13-17. After the Reds, the Colorado Rockies came to Chicago for a 3-game series and the Cubs hit their first speed bump of the season as the Rockies took 2 of 3 in this series. Colorado is one game under .500 at 14-15, but the N.L. West is so close that they’re just one game of of 1st place. After losing there first series of the year the Cubs went back on the road to face there rivals the St. Louis Cardinals in a 3-game series. This was looked at as the Cubs first test of the season and they appeared to pass as they took 2 of 3 games in St. Louis. The Cardinals have struggled a little bit and since they’re just .500 at 15-15 this series win wasn’t good enough for the Cubs. The Cubs then went to Cincinnati for a 4-game series against the Reds; which they where expected to win and they took 3 of the 4 games. It was back to Chicago for the Cubs and another N.L. Central match up; this time against the Milwaukee Brewers. Because of rain the series ended up being just 2 games and the Cubs won both. This was another expected outcome as the Brewers are in rebuild mode. Milwaukee is 11-18 and currently in last place in the N.L. Central. The Atlanta Braves where the next team on the schedule as they came to Chicago for a 3-game series, but more rain allowed just 2 games to be played and the teams split the shortened series. Was this the chink in the Cubs armor experts where looking for? The Braves are also rebuilding and have the worst record in baseball right now at 7-21, but look out they won a game in Chicago. The Cubs headed back out on the road and jumped back into N.L. Central play as they faced the Pittsburgh Pirates in a 3-game series. This was suppose to be another test for the Cubs as the Pirates where and still are in 2nd place in the N.L. Central. This appears to be another test the Cubs passed as they swept the Pirates. Pittsburgh is 16-13 on the season. This brings us to where we are now with the Cubs facing the Nationals.
You’ve seen the schedule the Cubs have played and are they just a creation of the teams they faced or are they a serious contender. I hope you’re leaning towards contender and you’re not looking to make excuses for the tams success. I’ve also been trying to figure out how the schedule is the Cubs fault. I believe the schedule was set by Major League Baseball and the Cubs or any other team don’t have anything to do with the scheduling of games. Will the Cubs continue to win games at a clip of .786 like they are now; probably not. While the Cubs are on a 5-game winning streak right now and they haven’t lost back to back games there will probably be some times when they lose multiple games in a row. Will that be the test the media needs, to see how they bounce back from a losing streak or is it something else. While it’s still too early in the season to hand the Cubs the World Series trophy they look like a team that might be in the mix for it at the end of the season.
The Sprint Cup series is going racing tonight in the GoBowling 400 at Kansas Speedway. Chris Olmstead usually joins the Sports Time Radio podcast on Sunday mornings to preview the race and give his Top 3 drives he thinks has h the best chance to end up in victory lane. Well with the race being on Saturday night Chris has sent us his picks for tonight’s race. Chris is going with Kevin Harvick; who’s starting 26th, Chase Elliott who’s starting 13th and Kyle Busch who’s starting 6th. Martin Truex Jr. took the pole with an average speed of 190.921 miles per hour. Matt Kenseth starts 2nd with his teammate Denny Hamlin starting 3rd. Kurt Busch will start the race 4th and last weeks winner Brad Keslowski rounds out the Top 5 starting 5th. Hopefully Chris will be able to join The Big Jack and Mr. Fantasy on Sports Time Radio tomorrow (Sunday) to review the race.
Zac Blair is a professional golfer and yesterday he was disqualified from the Wells Fargo Championship on Friday for using a bent putter. Now how did Blair’s putter get bent? Well Blair missed a putt on the 5th hole of his round on Friday and proceeded to hit himself in the head with his putter and bent it. Everything would’ve been fine if Blair hadn’t use the putter, but Rule 4-3b states that you can’t use a non-conforming club and by bending his club in anger Blair had a non-conforming club. Blair could have tapped in with a wedge and played the rest of the round without a putter. The Rules of Golf allow you to replace a damaged club during a round but not if the damage was done in anger. Blair approached a rules official on the sixth tee and explained the situation, which resulted in disqualification. Blair was 4 over par at the time and in danger of missing the 36-hole cut. In case you’re wondering Andrew Loupe is leading the tournament at -8 going into Saturday’s round.