It’s hard not to see a bright future for the Cubs

In 2003, when the Chicago Cubs made their playoff run, my dad pulled me aside and said, “Sam, this is your chance. It’s time you become a Cub fan, everything is going up for them, and I won’t fault you for switching sides.”

I was in shock. My dad is just about the biggest Sox fan and Cubs hater I know. When I was growing up, he always took slightly more joy in a Cubs loss than a Sox win. Here he was telling me to become a Cubs fan. He thought my life as a baseball fan would be more enjoyable if I jumped on the Cubs bandwagon in 2003. I remember getting very angry with him for telling me this.

I had been raised for 10 years as a die-hard Sox fan, and he wanted me to give all of that up. Neither my dad nor myself would become Cubs fans in 2003, as we watched their pennant dreams die at the hands of the Florida Marlins.

We would both be rewarded two years later when the White Sox made our dreams come true with a World Series win. Eleven years later, I still give my dad a hard time about trying to convince me to switch to the dark side.

Now, in 2014, nine years after the White Sox hoisted a World Series trophy, it’s becoming very difficult to be a Cubs hater.

What made hating the Cubs so easy and enjoyable over the years was that, well, they sucked. It was easy to hate on a team that appeared to have no future.

Now, I’m not saying that the Sox have been a great team in my lifetime, but they did win that World Series — something I never thought I would see the Cubs do in my life.

On the Major League roster now, they’ve got Javier Baez, Jorge Soler, Anthony Rizzo, Starlin Castro and Arismendy Alcantara as players who have been exciting to watch.

This isn’t what scares me however.

It’s the players lurking under the surface who make the Cubs so frightening for the future. It’s Kris Bryant, Albert Almora, Addison Russell, C.J. Edwards, and Kyle Schwarber just to name a few.

Theo Epstein and Jed Hoyer know exactly what they’re doing, and they’re doing it well. That being said, I don’t even think they knew the process would be this quick.

Many are already saying the Cubs will be a legitimate playoff contender as early as next season, and as much as I want to find reasons to disagree, I can’t anymore.

Let’s take pitching, for example, as something that people have said still needs to improve for the Cubs to contend. Well, they have already found potential gems in Jake Arietta, and Kyle Hendricks.

Need more pitching? Alright, how about they trade one of their many top prospects and acquire just about any pitcher their little Cubby hearts could dream of.

I’m still not going to jump on any Cubs bandwagon, and never will. I’m a Sox fan for life, and I do think White Sox general manager Rick Hahn has his team on the right track. With the Cubs though, it’s different. Their potential is at an all-time high, and the future looks extremely bright.

I have tried time and time again to find anything negative about the future of the Chicago Cubs. The only thing I can think of is, well, they are the Cubs and there is that whole curse thing.

Sam is a senior in Media. He can be reached at [email protected]. Follow him @sam_sherman5.