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Cubs Mon Oct 04 2010

Cubs Drop Season Finale To Astros 4-0

The Chicago Cubs ended the season the way they began it back in April against the Braves, losing. Terrible defense, a severe lack of clutch hitting, and a managerial change mid season are only a microcosm of what was the 2010 season for the Chicago Cubs. There are several things that need to be accomplished this off season before this team will be competitive in 2011. First things first though the last game of the year.

Ryan Dempster took the mound looking for his 16th victory of the year. The Astros would have other plans on Sunday afternoon. Dempster worked six innings allowing three earned runs and striking out seven. Not one of his better outings of the year and his defense didnt do him any favors. He gave up a pair of second inning runs, including one on a topper in front of the plate that Koyie Hill bobbled and hit the runner in the back with the ball.

The offense took the afternoon off as well only getting six hits off Astros starter Nelson Figueroa. While the Cubs finished their final road trip 5-2 today's game was a reminder of why the Cubs finished in fifth place and will be watching the playoffs on TV. They had a chance to finish in fourth had they beaten the Astros, but they fell back into fifth with their loss.

There are a number of issues that need to be resolved before the 2011 season begins. First and foremost is finding a new manager. The Cubs have begun the interview process and the top three candidates will most likely be Joe Girardi, Ryne Sandberg and Mike Quade. The biggest question out there is who is most capable of handling managing the Chicago Cubs for a 162 game season ? Managing the Cubs is a whole different animal.

The Cubs also need a first baseman next year. Several Cubs players have lobbied for soon-to-be free agent Adam Dunn. Even Dunn himself has gone on record stating he'd like to play for the Cubs. In addition to a first baseman they also need another starter and at least one more arm in the bullpen. All of these needs to be addressed in order to return to some form of contention in 2011. Oh and it has been done with a reduced payroll as well. It will be an interesting off season at Clark and Addison to say the least.

And that is all she wrote for the 2010 season. The Cubs next regular season game will be on April 1, 2011 their home opener against the Pittsburgh Pirates. Only 178 days until Opening Day 2011.

Former Major League Baseball Commissioner Bart Giamatti summed the end of the regular season up best. This comes from Giamatti's The Green Fields Of The Mind, "It breaks your heart. It is designed to break your heart. The game begins in the spring, when everything else begins again, and it blossoms in the summer, filling the afternoons and evenings, and then as soon as the chill rains come, it stops and leaves you to face the fall alone. You count on it, rely on it to buffer the passage of time, to keep the memory of sunshine and high skies alive, and then just when the days are all twilight, when you need it most, it stops."

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