Addison Russell could be the poster child if the 2015 Cubs are ahead of schedule.
Deep down, Russell probably would have considered this a good year if he stayed healthy and productive at Triple-A Iowa, got a September call-up and put himself in position to make the 2016 Opening Day lineup.
“No, I didn’t see any of this stuff,” Russell said. “I really wasn’t even expecting to be up in the league this year. It just kind of goes back to my work ethic. I just try to get better. The Cubs gave me this opportunity. I’m just trying to take full advantage of it.
“It’s been a hard year, (but) things are looking up.”
No doubt, the Cubs have felt the growing pains and understand they aren’t a lock for the playoffs yet. But after Saturday’s 6-3 victory over the White Sox at U.S. Cellular Field, it would only take a 23-24 finish for the Cubs to reach 90 wins.
White Sox fans will have to get used to the idea of seeing Russell, Kris Bryant, Kyle Schwarber and Jorge Soler for years to come. That group of rookies doesn’t even include Anthony Rizzo, a National League MVP candidate who just turned 26 and could remain under club control through the 2021 season.
This is the baseball nightmare on the South Side: The Cubs morphing into a perennial contender at a renovated Wrigley Field and becoming the game’s biggest story.
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