It's not that often we get to puff out our chests and brag about the Cubs, is it?
Anthony Rizzo hit a couple dingers yesterday and took over the NL lead with his 25th.
That's 2 more than he hit all last year, which was 8 more than the 15 he hit the year before.
With 62 games to go, you might say Mr. Rizzo is kind of exponential.
He's also hit 5 home runs in his last 15 at bats, which indicates he's "hot" and "seeing the ball well".
So for instance you'd hate to be Ian Kennedy, who's starting for the Padres when they play our favorite team tonight.
In the back of our collective minds, we've all been hoping that if Theo Epstein and Jed Hoyer's vision comes true, then we'll get to meet the vast majority of the guys on the team as rookies. And the joy we'll experience at watching them grow will be unlike any other team we'll have experienced, maybe in any sport.
With Rizzo's development and the jettisoning of Darwin Barney yesterday, that vision comes a step closer.
Here's a screengrab of the Cubs' depth chart from July 21, 2012.
Here's one from July 24, 2013:
Here's one from today:
Man, you switch out just 2 more photos - Baez for Bonifacio (we've all been buzzing about him playing 2nd in Iowa), and Bryant for either Coghlan or Ruggiano?
That is HUMENDOUS CHANGE with mind blowing potential.
And I'm still light years from giving up on Mike Olt.
It's a crazy cool time in Cub history.
Imagine the day when that little HR leader chart I drew up top has 3 Cubs in it.
Okay my eyes just rolled back into my head and I made duck noises for 37 seconds.
Gotta go, but I also have to say this.
Darwin Barney was a Gold Glover we all rooted for and really liked as just a guy.
But he was incomplete.
Our expectations for Cub players should be more than that.
I'm not trying to be mean or cold, it's just progress.
That said, here are some of my favorite Darwin Barney illustrations.