by Luke Stanczyk
It feels like a national holiday to diehards, as the pride and joy of Chicago’s baseball teams have returned for yet another season. Everyone, no matter what team they call their favorite, is optimistic. come opening day, with the mindset of a successful season for their favorite team.
The White Sox have moved on from the Ozzie Guillen era and their old ace who started the past eight opening days for the South Siders, Mark Buehrle. With former White Sox Robin Ventura in charge and many players returning from last year’s under-achieving squad, some fans have believe their team can bounce back.
It could be it a long year for the Cubs this season. Although one area they figure to be strong in is their starting pitching, most see them finishing fifth in the NL Central and continuing to make more moves at the trading deadline comes closer. New Cubs President Theo Epstein is doing the right things so far, and he could be just the guy this team needs to start over from scratch and build a team that can compete in the future.
According to experts, it should be a long summer if you are a baseball fan for either team in Chicago. Experts have both teams finishing in fifth place. However, some students at Benedictine think otherwise.
“I think the Sox could do really well if [Gordon] Beckham and [Adam] Dunn have bounce back years and if [Jake} Peavy stays healthy,” says White Sox fan Andrew Conniff. “However, the Tigers are the team to beat and the Indians are decent, so I do not really expect the Sox to win the division. Hopefully they can get that second wild card they added this year,”
“As a sox fan, I expect them to do fair in their rebuilding stages,” said Alex Fridge.
On the other side of town, it is more of the same attitude. Some fans have high expectations for this club, which has changed in many ways from last year’s team.
“I believe the Cubs can have a breakthrough year and surprise people by winning the division.” said Brendan Cadman. “I predict them to finish with a record of 88-74.”
Also, there are fans who realize that these changes make take a while and do not expect to win this year.
“Like every Cubs fan, I am hoping the new faces on the team will bring us a change for the better and soon,” said Megan Steiner. “This year I am expecting it to be a rebuilding year, so I am going to try to be patient.”
Hopefully, both teams prove their critics wrong and 2012 will end up being a fun summer full of great baseball in Chicago.