Marlon Byrd Thinks the Cubs Need Swagger

There’s no doubt that we are seeing the Cubs in a state of transition. Sure, Soriano might be around for a few more years, but there are some major pieces to the Cubs puzzle that have been around for years that won’t be on this team in the somewhat near future.

So what is this Cubs team? Nobody really knows. The identity of this team has not been formed. With Mike Quade’s short two-year contract, you can’t help but think he is filling a gap. Quade is a solid system guy without a huge personality. Even though his contract is only two years, this team will look quite a bit different at the beginning of the 2013 season as compared to when he took over in August of 2010.

We’re seeing a team that is playing decent, but seems to be struggling. Marlon Byrd wrote in his blog that what this Cubs team is lacking is swagger.  Byrd is probably right.  This is a team of highly-paid veterans that honestly don’t feel the need to play with urgency.  They are getting paid.  They have spent the last two years on a team that has not produced and that hasn’t influenced their paychecks, or really, their lives.

Then you have the young players.  They haven’t experienced anything to give them swagger.  Swagger is not a trait that you just create.  It is a form of confidence that develops through winning and success.  Byrd has this swagger and I think he’s a good guy to have in the clubhouse.  He is a guy that can put his arm around a guy like Barney and assure him that his success this year is not a fluke and he can instill some of that confidence in the young players.

I think this is a .500 club, but I think if they can get on a hot streak, things could really start rolling with this group.

Corey Fineran

Founder and Lead Host at Ivy Envy
A Cubs fan since 1985, Corey has seen (few) highs and (many) lows from the Boys in Blue.When he is not talking about the Cubs on The Ivy Envy Podcast, Corey helps high school students with disabilities become successful in the world of work…or he’s taking care of the chickens.

About Corey Fineran

5 comments
Corey
Corey

Ryan - I see "swagger" as confidence, not fire. I think it's the type of confidence that comes with winning and some success. It's what allows win-streaks to stay alive.

I suppose the only reason I look ahead to 2013 is because of how different this team could look in a few years.

JW - I think there's a very good chance that Hendry and the ownership did not want to feel like that HAD to hire Sandberg. I also think that if the Cubs would have hired Sandberg, they probably would find themselves in the position (eventually) of having to fire him as a manager. How difficult would it be to fire the guy that everyone in our generation probably sees as their "Mr. Cub"?

JW
JW

You raise another good question - just what is Mike Quade? At first, he was the interim, whom the Cubs announced would not be considered for the job permanently. Then all of a sudden, he's the guy, but only for a two-year deal.

What am I missing on this? Sandberg seemed like the perfect guy for the gig, now he's managing the farm in the Phillies organization. What happened?

Ryan
Ryan

And plus, "swagger" is kind of a short term solution to a long term problem, and although I realize we probably won't make the postseason this year, I don't think we need to be thinking ahead to 2013 just yet.

But I still love you.

Meehan

Ryan
Ryan

Just remember how a wildfire starts. There's a difference between "swagger" and "throwing a fit", and as we found out last year with Big Z, sometimes when you try to light a fire under somebody's ass, it causes their intestines to blow up.

Meehan

JW
JW

Upside: You are right, this is a .500-or-so club who could with a hot streak make some noise - let's be honest, nobody in the NL Central is really that good...

Downside: You are also right about being a "team in transistion,' but the question is transition to what?