Moving

Is David Ross the correct supervisor shifting ahead?

So let’s talk about David Ross as a manager, where the Chicago Cubs have been in his two-year presence and what to expect in the future.

2020 was a strange (to say the least) year for everyone. It was his first season at the top, but his return to the dugout felt anything but normal. Many players, coaches and staff were not in the best of mental health and the season was pretty tough for everyone. Amid all the chaos, Ross helped put together a successful ball club.

Although the Cubs finished 34-26 in a season shortened to 60 games and took their third division title in five years. They eventually lost the wild card streak to the Marlins and quickly ended the postseason.

Fast forward to 2021 and Chicago is in a downward spiral with 52-57, 13 games in first and fourth place in NL Central. This was largely due to the massive distress sale less than a week ago that moved the long-time core of the team of Kris Bryant, Javier Baez and Anthony Rizzo, breaking the hearts of fans around the world in the process.

Ross’ manager record now stands at 85-83 in his sophomore year at the top tier. How much to blame can we really blame him for the team’s underperformance? In my eyes there has always been a gray area in this regard. On the one hand, it’s up to the coaching staff and managers to produce all the little things that lead to a winning culture. On the other hand, it’s not up to the skipper to actually swing the club, hit the ball, and take a run. Sometimes when guys have problems, guys just fight. No matter how many adjustments you try to help them.

If you look at the starting line-up, which was the focus all season, you can’t ask Ross to turn a guy into an all-star talent. Some players are just better than others. You either have it or you don’t. It is up to the training of staff and pitching coaches to help pitchers and develop key strengths to adjust when something doesn’t work. Even then, a pitching coach can only go as far as the raw talent of their players will allow.

This is where the front office comes into play. If I have to point my finger at someone who has a poor pitching team, it’s the guy who signed those players in the first place. If you look at a player’s career numbers and sign a contract, you can’t very well blame the manager if they underperform.

Chicago Cubs: What Can We Expect From David Ross?

Personally, I believe that if you run a good ball club on Ross, he will succeed as a big league manager. Should Jed Hoyer be allowed to spend the off-season and hire some good free agents, I am confident that Ross will be the man for the future. Let’s just look at the core that was recently traded.

Anthony Rizzo is an exception on this list because he turned hot and only got hotter runs before the Cubs left, and was also six for his last 16 with Chicago before trading.

In three games with the San Francisco Giants, Kris Bryant only stands 2 for 12. His average is down four points despite making Homer in his first game on Bay.

Javier Baez has been up and down the New York Mets but comes from a big game where he showed off his famous swim stroke to score on the record and be at home. He hits .200 with the Mets, with four hits in 20 with bats to go with a pair of homers, HR, three RBI, a walk, and five strikeouts.

Looking at the overall seasons, many of the Cubs underperformed in Chicago this year. As mentioned above, you can give a player the tools to become a good ball player, but you cannot physically walk to the plate and swing the club for them. These break-ins are normal and happen to everyone.

The core battle with other teams, without Rizzo, solidifies my trust in Ross, who is moving forward. Give this man the right players to work with and this team can make it back into the postseason as early as next year. That part will remain in possession to open the checkbook and Jed Hoyer to make the right calls on his offseason goals.

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