This is how the Cubs MVP and Catcher's season ended. It is, in fact, a metaphor for the entire Cubs year (Not just season, year).The Cubs started this year with bona fide big leaguers at C, 1b, 3b and marginal big leaguers in CF and RF and at 2b. Every one of these except DLee has a historically bad OBP. Of these six arguable big leaguers, one was bound to have a calamitous injury. It turned out to be the brightest star and caused a borderline big leaguer at 2b to move to 1b and get all screwed up.
They had three Pitchers who were always a "wish and a prayer" WMiller, Prior, Wood. That none of them could get healthy was the worst possible outcome but it was hardly a shock.
Keep in mind that the Cubs have a humongous stash of minor league pitching talent. They also have hard-hitting third basemen stacked like cordwood in the minors, none of whom are ever going to play in front of the moody but talented Aramis Ramirez. To begin the season, Did the Cubbies move any of this Minor League talent to patch the screaming holes in LF and SS? Did they shop their coveted middle infielder with the big bat, Erick Patterson (Brother of Corey)? Did they Move one of the 3b (to Oakland, for example when their All Star 3b went down or to San Diego when they had a hissy fit and cut their overpaid 3b)? No, they did none of the above.
Did they allow their fragile, overweight righthander, JWilliams, to show he could repeat last year's second half? Nah, they sent him to the minors.
Well, then they probably made an absolute commitment to Matt Murton in Left, for better or for worse. Nah, they didn't do that either. For a while, John Mabry was actually getting starts in LF.
So what did they do at the big league level? They got Phil Nevin to fill the hole for DLee then didn't play him much at 1b. They got Cesar Izturis, a fine player but a disruption to their infield.
In short, the Cubs have shown a lack of ability to "cash" their minor league riches into big league talent. Indisputably, they have vast wealth in their minor league system and have had for about five years. Cashing that wealth into major league wins is a discreet skill. Nobody on the Cubs leadership team has displayed that skill. They can find young talent. They can develop it to a high professional level. They just can't either make it walk to the major league level or deal it for successful, winning major leaguers. Upper management lacks that discreet skill. Until the Cubs acquire that Skill they are destined to continue to fail. Until they acquire that skill, it is a little silly to talk about the talent or lack thereof of their field manager. Face it, until the Cubs turn minor league talent into major league wins, they will be the fan equivalent of an intrascrotal hematoma.
Do you think the Tribune Company wants to own an Intrascrotal Hematoma on the 100th anniversary of its last world series win? Two years and counting.