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Are the Chicago Cubs in a Position to make the Wild-Card Playoffs?

The opinions expressed in this article are the writer’s own and do not reflect the views of Her Campus.
This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at Illinois State chapter.

Well, Well, Well, it is that time of year again! Spring is coming to a close and fall is arriving quickly! This means that football is getting started, and baseball is coming to an end. Although I’m disappointed about not being able to watch a baseball game every day (almost), I’ll at least have football to watch on Sundays and a couple nights during the weekdays!

Anyways, the Chicago Cubs started their 2023 season with a slow start, but midway through after the All-Star Break, they found their stride and were winning games left and right. Now, we’re at the end of the season and they have been on a losing streak ever since being swept by the Arizona Diamondbacks. This losing streak has put the Cubs in a sticky situation determining whether they will gain the last wild card playoff spot above the Miami Marlins. Up until recently, they held that 3rd spot, but after a couple losses to the Pittsburgh Pirates, and three tragic (but very close) losses to the Atlanta Braves, the Cubs NEED consistent wins to hold onto that last spot. The other factor that requires some consideration in the Cubs journey into keeping that 3rd spot are the Miami Marlins. Miami has almost the same record of 83-76 as the Cubs who are 82-78. These recent standings show that the Cubs will have to win their last few games against the Milwaukee Brewers, in addition to some Miami losses for them to regain that last wild card spot.

With regards to the players on the Chicago Cubs, it is important to note that they have made a great impact on the team’s camaraderie and success. Whether players have been with the Cubs for years, or just came up from the Minors. Every player has one common goal: to WIN! Without a positive mindset, hope, and trust in the process, you won’t see results. Consistency, support, and trust is key. For instance, having players like Dansby Swanson and Nico Hoerner consistently being the Cubs shortstops and 2nd basemen gives the team reassurance on defense. The games they’ve played wouldn’t be the same without Christopher Morel’s power, Seiya Suzuki’s offense, Jeimer Candelario’s versatility, and of course, Pete Crow-Armstrong’s defense. Ultimately, these guys have changed the game for the better! No matter what obstacles they may be facing, their attitude and support from teammates, managers, and fans has lifted their spirits and convinced them that they’re a great team.

Another impact on the game is pitching, especially in end of game-closer situations. The Cubs have had their ups and downs, but what they have built with guys like Marcus Stroman, Justin Steele, Kyle Hendricks, Jordan Wicks, Drew Smyly, and Javier Assad, has been memorable. From devastating losses to impressive saves, it’s important to note that these guys are committed to the winning. Pitching is just as important as offense and defense, and pitchers hold a majority of the control of how the game will play out. There are multiple moving components that need to be altered constantly based on previous performances in order to see success and improvement. Some of the factors include, strongly holding a ball, having knowledge on the different kinds of pitches, confidence, and accuracy. In addition, the catcher and pitching coaches hold important roles in the success of pitching, because they are the ones who can provide the most support through encouragement and tips during mound visits.

Overall, there are a plethora of factors that go into a team’s success. Play-off success is built from trust, relationship, and support in one’s self and the team as a whole. The Chicago Cubs are doing the best they can given the current situation, and based on what I have seen the team do this season, I strongly believe they deserve the last spot in the Wild Card Playoff.

Sydney Kotowski

Illinois State '24

I'm a Senior Elementary Education major with an Endorsement in Reading! In my free time I love to read, write, bake, listen to music, and hang out with friends!