the guys over at Bleed Cubbie Blue were shocked at the civility of our cub team projections -- and we weren't even that generous. the 15 respondents made a collective forecast of 85-77, one game worse than what we projected for the brewers. we picked the cubs to finish in third place, which is also where we put the brew crew.
the w-l record gibes with our projected runs for/against (760-710), which translate into a pythagorean w-l of 87-75. our forecast agrees with the Replacement Level Yankees Blog's 100-season simulation, which also predicted the cubs to go 85-77.
and we agree with vegas: the early over-under on the cubs is 84.5 wins.
the picks varied far more widely for this team than they did for the brewers, from a high of 97 wins to a low of 78. i can see the argument for either choice. two people had the cubs winning the division (although one made the choice in a hexing spirit), and a fair number had them either winning or contending for the wild card; but a handful of other entries declared that this will be dusty's last season. we really were all over the map. and that, i think, pretty accurately reflects the cubs' prospects this year.
by the way, in discussing the cubs' pitching nobody (including me) remembered that chicago picked up wade miller this off-season; they have so many sore arms on that team it's hard to keep trackuv'm all. anyway, if fortune should smile upon the north side -- and i don't know why it would do that after all this time, but nobody knows just what fortune will do -- the cubs could have a rotation of zambrano, prior, wood, miller, and maddux.
that wouldn't suck. well, not for the north side anyway.