Four months until spring training! I'll probably subscribe to MLB.tv again. Just about all the games stream online for a $140 per year subscription. No commercials. I really like that. I followed the Cubs closely this year, because I could watch just about all their games.
I am not one of those patient, easy going loser Cubs' fans that the New York newspapers kept cackling about about during the National League Championship Series with the Mets. No, I was a mighty pissed Cubs' fan when the Lovable Losers were swept by the club's most bitter rival.
During the regular season, my day was built around the Cubs' game. That was my TV fix. Barely watched anything on cable. Streaming Netflix is my other source of TV entertainment. What a huge shift in delivery method! And everybody's doing it. At my girlfriend's house in suburban New Jersey, the demand for streaming data overwhelms the system during prime time.
Because of the internet, I of course follow my team all year round. The Cubs' MLB site keeps me up to date on the Top 30 Prospects. (Cubs' minor league system is loaded with position players. Minor league pitching won't start showing up in the majors until 2017.) Bleed Cubbie Blue is a good blog for keeping up with the off season rumors about how the roster will be structured next year.
Was I satisfied with the Cub's progress this season? Yes and No. The problem here is that the opportunity to advance to the World Series happens when it happens and teams have to seize that opportunity. This year, the Losers got a shot and they didn't seize it. So, Cub's history hasn't changed in that aspect. But, the boys did win a Division Series against the Cards.
I'm already looking at the 2016 Wrigley calendar. The Mets are in Chicago in July 2016. Cardinals and Pirates in August. I'm thinking of making a trip West, perhaps continuing out to Colorado for a 420 holiday. Am I too old to try to do that on my Harley?
The daily Cubs' story in the Tribune will be on hiatus until free agent signings and trades start being announced. Everybody says the Cubs will be looking for one or two starting pitchers. Who will they get? Will Dexter Fowler be back?
The Cubs will be worth watching just for the pleasure of observing Kris Bryant's development. I read a very optimistic prediction for his stats for next year... 37 HR, 130 RBI and a .305 batting average. I'll be surprised if he hits for that high average, but I'm down with the rest. I think that in the prime of his career Bryant might win a Triple Crown or two.
Joe Maddon has, I think, one more honeymoon year before the Chicago press turns bitchy. In 2016, the press will expect the team to win, and Maddon's "genius" designation will start to crumble... unless he can get the Cubs into the World Series.
I think the Cubs will be in the playoffs almost every year for the coming decade. Whether that translates into a World Series championship... who the hell knows?