Theo Epstein trying to downplay hype caused by Cubs’ red-hot start
The Chicago Cubs have stormed out of the gate to an MLB-best 25-6 record, something that has many pundits tabbing them as the prohibitive favorites to win the World Series.
Cubs president Theo Epstein, however, isn’t buying into the hype, correctly pointing out that there’s plenty of season remaining and countless things have to go right simply for the Cubs to continue their torrid stretch of baseball, let alone win it all.
“We’re thrilled with the start that we’ve gotten off to, obviously, but we’re not blinded by it,” Epstein said, via ESPN. “We know we’re in a stretch right now where winning seems far easier than it actually is, and we know there’s going to be a stretch — probably a long stretch — this year where winning even one game seems virtually impossible. That’s just the nature of baseball.
“We’ve been saying in the office: We’re in a tree right now. We want to stay up there as long as we can, but we’re gonna get down at some point.”
Esptein expressed his uneasiness over all the high praise the Cubs are receiving by pointing out “baseball karma is real.” He also suggested that other teams with better postseason pedigrees deserve all the accolades as the Cubs haven’t enjoyed the run of success that warrants them being called a lock to make a run at a World Series championship.
“When you see some of the stuff written about us in the winter and you see some of the World Series odds and things like that for a team that is the defending third-place team [in the NL Central] and hasn’t done anything yet,” he said. “… you get uncomfortable because there are teams that have gone out and earned it.”
Despite a dangerous offense and strong starting pitching staff — a lethal combination — Epstein nevertheless argues the Cubs “still have vulnerabilities,” a statement expected from a front office executive, even if it’s not an entirely accurate sentiment.
If the Cubs continue at such a torrid winning pace, the team will shatter the MLB-record regular-season victory mark of 116 wins with 130 victories.
But as Epstein points out, things can’t be expected to continue in this way. And it’s certainly not time for the Cubs to rest on their laurels.