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Cub Tracks’ what a great little asteroid

All the #Cubs, #MLB, and #MiLB news you can use, four days a week. More power predictions, roster projections, interviews, and more. Suitable for miners.

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Welcome to today’s edition of Cub Tracks news and notes™, a greatest-hits collection of Chicago-style beat writers and bloggers, ground from #Cubs, #MiLB, and #MLB baseball, overheated, steeped in writers’ tears, and then cold-brewed overnight for maximum flavor.

Thanks are in order for the fine accounting work by Al and Dep on the payroll update. That is a good read. Skip the text below if you’re here for the links.

I still don’t like the way the team operates but Jed Hoyer’s direction becomes clearer with more information. I’d still like a different GM but I’m pretty sure that his issues come from above, so I’ll lay off Jed for now. Tom, though... grr. Like someone said, the way the brass talks to the paying customers is indicative of their regard. Call it Cubbie bluenose, if you will.

That said, my Magic 8-Ball says the team is going to be better than expected. Almost dramatically better in the power department, reads the scrying crystal. The penciled-in prospective starting nine-ish (see below — slightly altered from my original, and could easily change again (these are the people that are likely to get 300+ at-bats)) clearly have the potential for 200-250 home runs (given that the conservative side of the result below is 160), and I fully expect them to reach that plateau (Matt Mervis occupying first wouldn’t change that for the worse, as that would move Hosmer to DH, where he’d hit a couple more long balls than McKinstry would, in this scenario). It wouldn’t surprise me to see two or three players clobber 30+ homers. Your mileage may vary. We’ll see what happens at the end of the year — I’ll update this as we continue through the season. @ me then. Each player is linked to their bbref page, and I’ve included what Zips projections I could glean.

  1. Hoerner (10-15) (Zips-11)
  2. Swanson (20-25) (Zips-22)
  3. Happ (20-25) (Zips-22)
  4. Wisdom (30-40) (Zips-16)
  5. Bellinger (25-30) (Zips-19)
  6. Suzuki (20-25) (Zips-25)
  7. Hosmer/Mancini (15-20) (Zips-12/?)
  8. Gomes/Barnhart (10-15) (Zips-9/?)
  9. Mancini/McKinstry (10-15) (Zips-?/10)

The lineup picture is a bit clearer than the pitching right now. Likely it will be through the spring as there are a lot of arms with potential due in camp. Here’s the 40, if you want it.

Less than three weeks until players report.. I’m ready for baseball. How about you?

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