The Chicago Cubs enter the All Star Break with an overall record of 35-57, and they just went through another long losing streak. This record is only going to get worse in the next couple of weeks as another big sell-off is coming.
Instead of handing out individual grades for each player, let’s look at the offense, pitching staff, and the management. An overall grade for the Cubs in the first half would be a C- or D+, especially after the promise in the first two weeks.
Deciding on a grade for the offense is a bit tricky as the Cubs are actually better than league average in terms of total runs, but are way down on the list in home runs. Some of the run totals are inflated a bit as there have been some high-scoring games along the way.
Ian Happ and Nico Hoerner are having career seasons for the Cubs, and Willson Contreras continues to be the best offensive catcher in baseball. There have been some other bright spots along the way as well, including Christopher Morel.
For all of the good performances though, the Cubs haven’t gotten anything from Jason Heyward, Andrelton Simmons, Frank Schwindel, or Nick Madrigal. The Cubs haven’t been losing games because of the offense and for that this group will get an overall grade of a B.
The pitching is where we really start to see a huge problem with the Chicago Cubs, and it’s a problem that really started in the offseason. Despite the additions of Wade Miley and Marcus Stroman, it was pretty clear that the Cubs lacked pitching depth.
Kyle Hendricks has had his worst season in a Cubs uniform and both Miley and Stroman have been hurt most of the year. The bullpen has been dominant at times, but it’s also been a parade of new pitchers in that group.
A 4.58 ERA is among the worst in baseball, and it has led to many long nights for the staff. A C- grade is appropriate for the pitching staff, and it might even get worse in the second half.
Those around baseball continue to appreciate the work that David Ross has done with the Cubs, and most would agree that he is a great manager. That might be true, but it’s not like Ross has been able to do anything to make this team competitive on a consistent basis.
Ross has also started to show a penchant for getting tossed out of games, and his frustration is clearly showing. It’s not all his fault, but it’s starting to look like he might not be long for this job in Chicago.
Jed Hoyer and Tom Ricketts deserve about 90% of the blame for this season as they just continue to make frustrating decisions. Those men won’t admit that this is a rebuild, and they should be judged for the team that is on the field each day.
The coaching staff and management get a grade of a D- for this disaster in 2022, and that grade will likely be an F after the Cubs field a Minor League team after the Trade Deadline.