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A Review Of A Cubs Playoff Season: April 2015

Let's look back at this magical year from the beginning.

Mike McGinnis/Getty Images

This is the first in a six-part series having a look back at the Cubs' 2015 playoff season, one month at a time.

I'm intending these as a way to reminisce before we head into the postseason, re-live the highs and lows of perhaps the most remarkable Cubs season any of us can remember.

Team record

12-8. It was the first winning April for the Cubs since 2008, when they went 17-9 (17-10 including March 31).

Best win

I had two choices here, but I'm going with April 18 against the Padres. The Cubs led 6-2 going into the ninth, but Phil Coke (yes, that was this year) and Hector Rondon had major meltdowns and the Padres tied the game. Two innings later, Anthony Rizzo walked and stole second. Kris Bryant hit an infield single and David Ross walked to load the bases. Starlin Castro singled to left to win it. (That's the photo above.)

Also considered: April 13 against the Reds. Trailing 6-4 in the eighth, the Cubs tied it on a two-run homer by Jorge Soler, his second two-run shot of the game. In the 10th, Arismendy Alcantara singled with the bases loaded to win it. That was one of only two hits Mendy had in the big leagues in 26 at-bats before he spent the rest of the year in Des Moines.

Also considered: April 12 against the Rockies. Dexter Fowler's two-out, two-strike, two-run homer off LaTroy Hawkins won a game that appeared lost. Weird note: ex-Cub Hawkins went to the Blue Jays in the Troy Tulowitzki deal. If the Cubs can get to the World Series and face Toronto, Fowler could wind up facing him again.

Toughest loss

April 17 against the Padres. Jason Hammel had gotten through the sixth with a 4-2 lead. He gave up two singles and was relieved by Zac Rosscup, who got the second out of the inning. Brian Schlitter was summoned to face Wil Myers, who hit a three-run homer that was the difference in the game.

Best individual monthly performance

Jake Arrieta began his fantastic season by going 3-1 with a 2.03 ERA in four April starts, highlighted by seven shutout innings against the Cardinals on a frigid afternoon April 8 at Wrigley Field.

Roughest individual month

Mike Olt, who started the year as the Cubs' third baseman, was hit in the wrist April 12 in Colorado. He tried to play one more game, but the wrist fracture set him back months, most of which he spent in Des Moines before he was claimed on waivers by the White Sox September 5.

Weirdest happening

The half-finished state of Wrigley Field on Opening Night April 4, leading to long lines for restrooms and overcrowded concourses. The Cubs eventually finished up construction and the ballpark looked great by midseason.

Saturday: A look at the Cubs in May 2015.