Sunday, January 17, 2016

163

2016 is shaping up to be another exciting season on the north side. Jason Heyward and John Lackey have turned away from the dark side and have donned blue pinstripes, a svelte Addison Russell's hamstring has healed, and Ben Zobrist is ready to add some versatility to the roster.

Of course, most of the 2015 Cubs that made an unexpected run to the NLCS are back:  NL Rookie of the Year Kris Bryant, NL Cy Young Award winner Jake Arrieta, NL Manager of the Year Joe Maddon, 2015 NL All-Star Anthony Rizzo, Kyle Schwarber, Jorge Soler, Jon Lester, Hector Rondon, and many others. 

The big differences will be a Cubs infield without Starlin Castro -- for the first time since he took Ryan Theriot's job back in May, 2010 -- and an outfield without Dexter Fowler's leadoff bat. Although Castro's bat heated up nicely at the end of the season (and he looked to be settling in at 2B), and Fowler gave the Cubs his above average OBP, the addition of Zobrist and Heyward more than offset the losses. Well, as long as one of them adopts Starlin's walk-up song, that is.

Pitchers & catchers report to Sloan Park in Mesa, Arizona on February 19. Opening day is April 4 in Anaheim.

Let's go.


How The Number Works

The Chicago Cubs Magic Number is derived by the following equation: Total Number of Games + 1 - Wins by the Cubs - Losses by Best Opponent.

The Magic Number is affected by one of two events, a Cubs win or the best opponent losing. The number is 163 at the beginning of the season. When the number hits 0, the Cubs have clinched the NL Central and are in the PLAYOFFS!

This site represents the Magic Number for clinching the National League Central Division . If the Wild Card becomes relevant for getting into the post season, this site may contain both. In that case, the Wild Card number will clearly be denote.

Shoot an email to 2009@cubsmagicnumber.com with comments and suggestions. Also, drop a Cubs theme'd photo with a story. It may be posted during future number updates.

This is the year

This is the year
I will watch from just over the rail.