Just hours remain in 2019, so as I did last year, I wanted to take a look at the articles that got the most attention here at BCB this year.
Last year’s list included a number of Jake Arrieta and Yu Darvish rumors. This year’s list is quite a bit more varied.
As I did a year ago, I’ll count these down from No. 10 (fewest) to No. 1 (most). Page view numbers are as of early this morning, December 31.
10) May 27: Bill Buckner passes away, 22,686 page views
“Billy Buck” was popular in his playing days, and that popularity was reflected in the number of people who read this article.
9) January 14: Luke Hagerty begins comeback attempt at age 37, 23,787 page views
Sadly, Hagerty’s comeback ended before it began when he suffered another elbow injury while preparing for minor-league spring training. Hagerty’s going to give it another shot in spring training 2020:
Another re-signing of note is LHP Luke Hagerty. Gained fame last offseason as 37-year signed after throwing upper-90s in showcase event. Cubs 2002 1st rd pick hasn't pitched since elbow issues and the yips forced retirement in 2008. Another injury last year cut short comeback bid— Michael Ernst (@mj_ernst) November 7, 2019
8) November 22: A wild trade proposal involving Kris Bryant and Jason Heyward, 25,228 page views
The proposal wasn’t mine, it came from Joel Sherman:
63 percent of readers answering the poll said it was “crazy talk.”
7) November 14, 2018: The Cubs are renumbering every seat in Wrigley Field, 25,270 page views
No, that’s not out of place. This article, posted in November 2018, has 25,270 page views since January 1, 2019. I guess people were really wondering about the new seat numbers at the ballpark.
6) May 15: Julianna Zobrist files for divorce from Ben Zobrist, 29,129 page views
Ben spent more than three months away from the team before returning in September. He’s currently a free agent, and I suspect he might wind up retiring.
5) August 22, 2018: The Cubs’ 2019 regular season schedule, 29,810 page views
As was the case for No. 7 in this list, this article from August 2018 received a lot of attention during calendar year 2019.
4) October 19: Thoughts on how David Ross will do as Cubs manager from Joe Maddon, 30,878 page views
There were, obviously, quite a few articles on this site about the Cubs’ managerial change (two others ranked 12th and 18th). This one, which quoted Joe Maddon on Ross’ qualifications, ranked highest. It was posted four days before Ross was hired.
3) January 4: Regarding the cost per subscriber for the Marquee Network, 31,404 page views
This article broke down the publicly-reported proposed cost of the network ($6 per subscriber) and what it meant for possible carriage of the channel on various cable/satellite systems. As of today, the channel still doesn’t have clearance on Comcast/Xfinity systems in the Chicago metro area. Comcast has more subscribers in the Chicago area than all the other providers combined, so that’s a pretty big deal. Stay tuned, as they say.
2) November 4: A Kris Bryant to the Braves trade proposal, 53,917 page views
This one involved Albert Almora Jr., Ender Inciarte and Max Fried. It was a follow-up to a similar article I’d posted about a month earlier.
We are almost two months past that article’s date. Bryant’s grievance is still unresolved and he’s still a Chicago Cub.
1) February 5: Cubs regular-season TV schedule, 194,113 page views
Though this is just the second year I’ve published an article listing the most-read BCB posts, the Cubs’ TV schedule has been the most-read article on this site every year since 2015. The reason’s obvious: The games were on at least five different channels (NBC Sports Chicago, WGN-TV, ABC7 Chicago, Fox-TV and ESPN). Like this year, in each of those previous years the TV schedule article ranked No. 1 by a significant margin.
That probably won’t be the case in 2020 with almost all Cubs games moving to the Marquee Network. 150 games will be shown on that channel, with the other 12 split between Fox and ESPN. I’ll still post a schedule article when the Fox and ESPN games are officially announced, likely again sometime in February. But I don’t expect it to pile up nearly 200,000 page views.
Thanks for reading all year — here’s to a bigger and better 2020 for the Cubs!