Opening Day is always a special time of year for each MLB team. That’s especially true for the Chicago Cubs, who got to start off the season at Wrigley Field. There wasn’t a sellout crowd at Wrigley Field for Opening Day, but the fans that were in attendance were able to see a win.
In fact, the Cubs actually won two of the first three games this season, and that has some fans thinking big. Winning a series to begin the year is always a good thing, but it’s even better when it’s against the Milwaukee Brewers, last year’s National League Central champions.
This series did have one game get rained out and the Cubs also enjoyed an off day on Monday. Chicago returned to action on Tuesday afternoon, picking up a 2-1 win in its series opener against the Pittsburgh Pirates.
Winning three out of every four would give the Cubs an MLB record for wins in a year, a pace they will not be able to keep. That said, this start has been terrific and the Cubs have the ability to contend in a weak NL Central Division.
There are still some real holes on this roster, but the hitting approach finally looks to be different this year. The Cubs are striking out less and making more contact, an approach that can be tough to pitch against.
One of the biggest highlights of the young season was a home run by Nico Hoerner on Opening Day. This isn’t a Cubs team that will hit a ton of home runs this season, but they have found some power in the early going.
Starting Staff Pitching Well
The Cubs entered 2022 with a number of injuries to key starting pitchers, but it didn’t have a big impact on the results. All four of the Cubs that took the mound to start a game pitched well, with Justin Steele looking the best.
Steele completely shut down Milwaukee in game two of the season, and his growth should be fun to follow throughout the year. Marcus Stroman also put on a show in his Cubs debut, but the bullpen was unable to hold the lead.
The starting staff still needs to go deeper in games, but that should come as the season continues to move along.
Suzuki Looks For Real
The Cubs didn’t go all out in free agency this offseason, but they were able to land the biggest international prospect. Seiya Suzuki comes from Japan with plenty of hype and provides some hope for Chicago’s future.
Suzuki has already paid some major dividends through the first four games of his five-year contract. Suzuki belted a three-run homer in the series finale against the Brewers and then started off the series in Pittsburgh with two home runs.
Ian Happ has also gotten off to a big start for the Cubs. That duo could provide plenty of offense in the middle of that lineup.