Which Crazy Surprise Things Will Happen?

Which of these are most likely?

Ian Happ becomes a young-Zobrist-like WAR monster with 30+ HR power
19
12%
Javy learns how to walk a little and hit RHP better and unlocks superstar potential
26
16%
Rizzo or Bryant have sub-2 win seasons
2
1%
Contreras leads the team in WAR (by excellent performance, not default)
21
13%
Almora puts it together vs RHP and puts out a 4+ WAR season
20
12%
Darvish finishes top 2 in Cy Young
12
7%
Lester pitches himself out of the rotation
4
2%
Lester has a huge bounceback and leads the team in fWAR (again, by performance, not default)
8
5%
Chatwood figures it out, takes advantage of an elite Cubs infield defense to put up the best ERA on the staff
13
8%
Schwarber breaks out and hits for enough average to put up a .950 OPS
33
20%
Hendricks pitches himself out of the rotation and Montgomery steps in and never looks back
4
2%
 
Total votes: 162

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Which Crazy Surprise Things Will Happen?

Postby David » Thu Feb 15, 2018 2:03 am

Every year, crazy surprise stuff happens like huge breakouts or major underperformance...with the sheer quantity of young extremely talented players this team has, there's room for lots of that type of thing.

I swear I wasn't stoned when I came up with this
Last edited by David on Thu Feb 15, 2018 4:00 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Which Crazy Surprise Things Will Happen?

Postby TomtheBombadil » Thu Feb 15, 2018 3:43 am

Darvish and Almora

Almora, like everyone, joins the feeding frenzy on offense started by Bryant (increasing gap) and Rizzo. Darvish is legit, one of those guys who will really shine pitching in front of this offense.

Other crazy surprises:

- Steve Cishek is the bullpen MVP with stiff competition from Justin Wilson
- As hinted above, Bryant separates himself from the pack even more than he already has
- Chatwood throws 150 innings
- Big deadline trade to consolidate the Almoras and Montgomerys of the roster
- Edwards gets a little more leash, sees more multiple inning outings
- Contreras is the second best player on the team in the first half, maybe even the best, either way he is coming out hot
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Re: Which Crazy Surprise Things Will Happen?

Postby David » Thu Feb 15, 2018 3:50 am

i wanted to put up something like Schwarber becomes a .950 OPS monster but i forgot
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Re: Which Crazy Surprise Things Will Happen?

Postby Cubswin11 » Thu Feb 15, 2018 3:52 am

I voted Happ, Almora, Willy and Chatwood ones.
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Re: Which Crazy Surprise Things Will Happen?

Postby jersey cubs fan » Thu Feb 15, 2018 3:52 am

Dark horse candidate: Hendricks fails miserably

He is the same age as Jimi when he died.

This could happen, and conceivably barely hurt the Cubs chances.
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Re: Which Crazy Surprise Things Will Happen?

Postby TomtheBombadil » Thu Feb 15, 2018 4:00 am

jersey cubs fan wrote:Dark horse candidate: Hendricks fails miserably


Oh, I like it. Didn’t Epstein once comment that these sinkerballing pitchers have very short peaks? Hendricks has never developed a good breaking ball, which is going to bite him in the ass at some point.

Switch Montgomery for Alec Mills without the not looking back part. I also think Schwarber will mash.
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Re: Which Crazy Surprise Things Will Happen?

Postby JudasIscariotTheBird » Thu Feb 15, 2018 4:01 am

jersey cubs fan wrote:Dark horse candidate: Hendricks fails miserably

He is the same age as Jimi when he died.

This could happen, and conceivably barely hurt the Cubs chances.

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Re: Which Crazy Surprise Things Will Happen?

Postby David » Thu Feb 15, 2018 4:02 am

oh god i'm an idiot

i edited the poll and now everyone's votes are gone

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Re: Which Crazy Surprise Things Will Happen?

Postby JudasIscariotTheBird » Thu Feb 15, 2018 4:04 am

TomtheBombadil wrote:
jersey cubs fan wrote:Dark horse candidate: Hendricks fails miserably


Oh, I like it. Didn’t Epstein once comment that these sinkerballing pitchers have very short peaks? Hendricks has never developed a good breaking ball, which is going to bite him in the ass at some point.

You like it?! What in the...it's like that "If Zambrano starts your in trouble" guy never happened. Sinkerballers are money with this infield and we all know it. Now I have to go and buy a Hendricks jersey.
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Re: Which Crazy Surprise Things Will Happen?

Postby Hairyducked Idiot » Thu Feb 15, 2018 4:12 am

What's the difference functionally between Hendricks' awesome changeup and a curve.
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Re: Which Crazy Surprise Things Will Happen?

Postby TomtheBombadil » Thu Feb 15, 2018 4:14 am

DiceMan4221 wrote:You like it?!


It’s interesting. Hendricks was a weird pitcher even before his fastball averaged 86 MPH. Shallow repertoire, declining velocity, decling whiff rates, missed time with an upper body and throwing arm injury, more flyballs and hard contact....Smoke!
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Re: Which Crazy Surprise Things Will Happen?

Postby TomtheBombadil » Thu Feb 15, 2018 4:16 am

Hairyducked Idiot wrote:What's the difference functionally between Hendricks' awesome changeup and a curve.


Fair enough, though his changeup did go from a 23% whiff rate in 2016 to 19% in 2017 per Brooks Baseball
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Re: Which Crazy Surprise Things Will Happen?

Postby JudasIscariotTheBird » Thu Feb 15, 2018 4:20 am

TomtheBombadil wrote:
DiceMan4221 wrote:You like it?!


It’s interesting. Hendricks was a weird pitcher even before his fastball averaged 86 MPH. Shallow repertoire, declining velocity, decling whiff rates, missed time with an upper body and throwing arm injury, more flyballs and hard contact....Smoke!

I don't really see an obvious decline in K rate. His velocity was climbing ever since his return from the DL. Shallow?! He has a 4 pitch mix with good movement on 3 of them with deception and control. If that is smoke, give me a toke.
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Re: Which Crazy Surprise Things Will Happen?

Postby Cubswin11 » Thu Feb 15, 2018 4:28 am

Some other ones I like off the top of my head... Cishek leading the bullpen in a stupid stat like saves or ERA, Heyward putting up a .730-.750 OPS and ~5 WAR season (like 2014), Russell putting it mostly together and staying healthy for a 4.5-5+ WAR, Carl/Maples/Morrow trio rivaling any bullpen trio in baseball for some metric(s), all 5 starters finish with a WAR over 3 and ERA under 3.8, Happ/Almora combine for a top 5 CF in MLB in their platoon, Bryant/Rizzo/Schwarber over 100 HRs combined
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Re: Which Crazy Surprise Things Will Happen?

Postby Transmogrified Tiger » Thu Feb 15, 2018 5:01 am

Agree that Darvish and Almora seem the most likely. At first I thought it was Schwarber, but man .950 is a high high bar, he'd have to hit like .285 with best ever power.

Chatwood could happen especially with Hickey, maybe I think that's less likely because unless someone else tanks you're then in full-on cackle mode with the strength of the team.

Also, thank you for keeping Hendricks humble. Finally, some doubters that he can continue what he's doing.

The one that isn't listed here is something like the Conteras option, but for Russell.
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Re: Which Crazy Surprise Things Will Happen?

Postby David » Thu Feb 15, 2018 6:49 am

Transmogrified Tiger wrote:Agree that Darvish and Almora seem the most likely. At first I thought it was Schwarber, but man .950 is a high high bar, he'd have to hit like .285 with best ever power.

Chatwood could happen especially with Hickey, maybe I think that's less likely because unless someone else tanks you're then in full-on cackle mode with the strength of the team.

Also, thank you for keeping Hendricks humble. Finally, some doubters that he can continue what he's doing.

The one that isn't listed here is something like the Conteras option, but for Russell.


I love this.
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Re: Which Crazy Surprise Things Will Happen?

Postby Sammy Sofa » Thu Feb 15, 2018 11:28 am

Man, Heyward sucking is such a foregone conclusion he didn't show up in the poll or the discussion yet.
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Re: Which Crazy Surprise Things Will Happen?

Postby jersey cubs fan » Thu Feb 15, 2018 12:07 pm

David wrote:oh god i'm an idiot

i edited the poll and now everyone's votes are gone

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Did you add the Hendricks option? I didn't notice it the first time. I thought it was a bit heavy on upside surprises.
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Re: Which Crazy Surprise Things Will Happen?

Postby David » Thu Feb 15, 2018 2:56 pm

jersey cubs fan wrote:
David wrote:oh god i'm an idiot

i edited the poll and now everyone's votes are gone

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Did you add the Hendricks option? I didn't notice it the first time. I thought it was a bit heavy on upside surprises.


i did.
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Re: Which Crazy Surprise Things Will Happen?

Postby Banedon » Thu Feb 15, 2018 3:28 pm

I went with Javy and Schwarber.

Mostly just wishful thinking .
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Re: Which Crazy Surprise Things Will Happen?

Postby David » Thu Feb 15, 2018 4:16 pm

Sammy Sofa wrote:Man, Heyward sucking is such a foregone conclusion he didn't show up in the poll or the discussion yet.


yeah that occurred to me after this list. even i've given up hope of him putting up much more than a 2 win type of season.
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Re: Which Crazy Surprise Things Will Happen?

Postby David » Thu Feb 15, 2018 4:17 pm

jersey cubs fan wrote:
David wrote:oh god i'm an idiot

i edited the poll and now everyone's votes are gone

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Did you add the Hendricks option? I didn't notice it the first time. I thought it was a bit heavy on upside surprises.


the thing is almost nobody except rizzo and bryant would absolutely shock me if they had really bad years.
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Re: Which Crazy Surprise Things Will Happen?

Postby jersey cubs fan » Thu Feb 15, 2018 4:21 pm

Quintana, Darvish, Lester or Hendricks having a bad year would be a surprise.
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Re: Which Crazy Surprise Things Will Happen?

Postby David » Thu Feb 15, 2018 4:24 pm

jersey cubs fan wrote:Quintana, Darvish, Lester or Hendricks having a bad year would be a surprise.


Lester wouldn't shock me that much at this point. In completely arbitrary and made up probabilities, i'd have him like 1/3 being bad, 1/3 being meh/good enough, and 1/3 being very good.

Darvish and Q would shock me, yeah, depending on how bad we're talking.
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Re: Which Crazy Surprise Things Will Happen?

Postby javy knows my name » Thu Feb 15, 2018 4:28 pm

jersey cubs fan wrote:Quintana, Darvish, Lester or Hendricks having a bad year would be a surprise.


Man, that is a nasty playoff rotation
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