The Chicago Cubs enter spring training with a new look after a very busy winter. After a somewhat disappointing but promising 2014 season not many people around the game as well as fans expected to see the Cubs work like they did this off-season.
The first key addition the club added this off-season was manager Joe Maddonn, who had spent the past eight seasons with the Tampa Bays became available after he elected to opt out of his contract. This opened up the door for Theo Epstein to land the talented manager that led the Rays to a 754-705 record and a trip to the World Series.
Following the addition of Maddon the team also landed one of the top starters on the market in Jon Lester. The move gives the team a true number one starter and someone who has had a ton of postseason success. Last season, Lester finished the regular season with a 2.46 earned run average to go with a 16-11 record in 32 starts.
Along with the Lester signing, the team also brought back right hander Jason Hammel to anchor one of the five starting rotation spots. Last season Hammel was 8-5 with a 2.98 earned run average in 17 starts before being traded to the Oakland A’s.
The team didn’t stop their this off-season as they also traded for catcher Miguel Montero and outfielder Dexter Fowler to give the team some additional experience to go with the teams young talent. The last move many expect to be made for opening day is the addition of third baseman Kris Bryant to the teams 25 man roster.
Bryant is the top prospect in the minors and could be a key to this team’s success in 2015.