Just hours remain in 2021 — and thank heavens for that! — and so, as I did last year, I wanted to have a look at the articles that got the most attention here at BCB during the calendar year.
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 just before posting time, December 31.
One of these is a bit of a cheat, and I’ll explain when we get there. As you can imagine, almost all of these relate to the Cubs’ trade deadline selloff, the lead-up to it, and its aftermath.
Honorable mention) January 21: A preliminary look at the Cubs’ 2021 Opening Day roster, 17,761 page views
Listed here because of the cheat below.
10) July 28: Let’s talk about the latest Kris Bryant trade rumor, 19,005 page views
We were getting close to the deadline and rumors were flying. This particular rumor (Bryant to the Giants for top catching prospect Joey Bart and others) didn’t happen, but KB did wind up in San Francisco, and at least one of the prospects coming back (Caleb Kilian) looks like a keeper.
9) July 30: Cubs trade Kris Bryant to Giants, 20,581 page views
You’ll see the others of the “Big Three” trades coming up.
8) July 30: Cubs trade Javier Báez and Trevor Williams to Mets, 21,191 page views
The Javy trade gets just a few more page views than the KB deal.
7) February 3: The Nolan Arenado trade is bad for baseball, 23,039 page views
This article by Sara Sanchez hit on some key points about tanking that are still valid as we sit through Rob Manfred’s lockout.
6) July 29: Cubs trade Anthony Rizzo to Yankees, 24,504 page views
This deal is what got the ball rolling, a day before the deadline, and let us know Jed Hoyer was serious about breaking up the band. It got a day’s head start on the other trade articles noted above.
5) July 31: Reflections on one of the craziest weeks in Cubs history, 24,572 page views
My summary and thoughts about all the deals, the day after they all went down.
4) July 6: There are eerie parallels between the 1973 Cubs and the 2021 Cubs, 28,246 page views
This article compared the breakup of the beloved late 1960s/early 1970s Cubs to what might happen (and did) later in July. I concluded:
I suppose we’ll just have to see what Jed Hoyer and Co. do over the next 24 days.
Fasten your seat belts, this ought to be an interesting ride.
That didn’t even begin to describe it.
3) January 25: The Pirates’ trade of Jameson Taillon is a symptom of what’s wrong with baseball, 39,020 page views
This article was in a similar vein to Sara’s about Nolan Arenado. Why this got over 10,000 more page views than the one just before it in the rankings is a mystery, except...
2) May 29: Pirates first baseman Will Craig explains the Javier Báez play, 43,078 page views
Another article involving the Pirates ranks even higher. Now, this was a pretty big story, the crazy Javy backwards baserunning play in Pittsburgh May 27, but... I wouldn’t have thought it would get almost double the views of some of the Cubs trade articles. Maybe it got picked up by some Pittsburgh news source.
An article involving the Pirates topped last year’s list, too. Maybe I should write more things about the Pirates.
And now, here’s the cheat.
1) An update on Javier Báez, Kris Bryant, Anthony Rizzo and other former Cubs, 43,584 page views
The reason there’s no date or link above is that I used this same headline for five different articles without putting a date in the headline, so Google Analytics (where I get these page view totals reported to me) aggregated the numbers into one bucket. Which isn’t necessarily wrong — clearly, these were popular, and I realized that after the first one, so I decided to do it weekly until the season ended.
The five articles included in the page view total above were dated August 23, September 7, September 13, September 20 and October 4. There were two others written with the “Big Three” named in a different order: August 11 (Rizzo, Báez, Bryant) and August 16 (Báez, Rizzo, Bryant). Those last two are not included in this total.
Clearly, even scattered among seven different articles, this was the most popular BCB topic of 2021. However, none of these articles would have made the Top 10 individually, so if you like, you can treat No. 2 as No. 1, and adjust down the line and put the “honorable mention” article in as No. 10.
Thanks for reading all year. Happy New Year, and here’s to a better 2022 for the Chicago Cubs.