Many believe the 2021 Chicago Cubs will not fair well in the revamped NL Central, but this new-look Cubs squad may not fair as bad as many think. Although the Cubs lost the likes of Yu Darvish, Kyle Schwarber, and Jose Quintana, they replaced them with Jake Arrieta, Joc Pederson, and Zach Davies. Now, Cubs fans, before you sit back and roll your eyes check out these three bold predictions for the 2021 Chicago Cubs.
The Rookie Shows Up
The 2021 Chicago Cubs pitching rotation will be led by Kyle Hendricks, but the rookie right-hander Adbert Alzolay will steal the show. Alzolay joined the Cubs as an 18-year-old, and since then has played eight seasons across many different levels, while posting a 3.74 ERA. Come 2021, Alzolay will be taking the mound the mound full time for the Cubs.
Bold Prediction: Alzolay wins NL Rookie of The Year (…by a landslide)
The New Kid on The Block Shines
Many Cubs fans questioned the choice to let Schwarber go, but the addition of Joc Pederson could prove much better for the 2021 Chicago Cubs. The seven-year veteran has hit a total of 130 career home runs, including 36 home runs in 2019. The cubs inked Pederson to a one-year $7 million contract this winter with the potential to be an absolute steal.
Bold Prediction: Joc Pederson goes deep 40+ times in 2021
A Bounce Back For The Ages
Once one of the most feared closers in baseball, Craig Kimbrel now seems to have lost himself. After leading the league for four straight seasons and appearing in four All-Star games with the Atlanta Braves, followed by three All-Star appearances in Boston, Kimbrel made his way to the Windy City. Since arriving in Chicago Kimbrel has posted a 6.00 ERA with 15 saves over two seasons, which is less than half the amount of saves he has ever had in a single season as an MLB closer. Now is not the time for Cubs fans to give up on Kimbrel.
Bold Prediction: Kimbrel saves 25+ games
Kimbrel's best outing of the spring for sure. 14 pitches, 6 fastballs, sat 97, hit 98. Got two swinging Ks, both on CBs. Already getting better reports from scouts in the seats today. Heater had rise consistently, not the two-seam action that gets him in trouble
— Sahadev Sharma (@sahadevsharma) March 20, 2021
MVP At Wrigley
This time around though it will not be a young electric superstar, instead it will be a “late" blooming veteran. Anthony Rizzo did finish fourth in MVP voting in 2015 and 2016. The heart and soul of the Cubs has accumulated many accolades since joining the Cubs, but not a League MVP. Could 2021 be the Year?
Bold Prediction: Anthony Rizzo wins NL MVP
Cubs In October
Many fans and “experts" do not see the Cubs playing past September, but if the rotation finds its stride early by winning games in April fans could see the Cubs playing in October. Although the NL Central got stronger with the Cardinals adding stud third baseman Nolan Arenado, while the Brewers hung onto Christian Yelich and Josh Hader, making the playoffs will be a challenge for the 2021 Chicago Cubs. That is not to say it is an impossible feat to accomplish.
Bold Prediction: Cubs make the playoffs and go to the NLCS
The 2021 Chicago Cubs will start the season with no expectations, and the boys in blue will come out strong and prove to the doubters that they are not ready to go out without a fight.
Rookie pitcher Adbert Alozlay will hit the field and set high expectations for his career, while Joc Pederson makes the defending Champions regret letting him hit the market. Closer Craig Kimbrel will defy father time and Anthony Rizzo will shock baseball. All while helping the Cubs work their way back into baseball fan"s minds all over America.
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