Grading Chicago Cubs’ Starting Lineup Through 8 Weeks

Grading Chicago Cubs' Starting Lineup Through 8 Weeks

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Even though the Cubs are off to another rough start this season, they've had mixed performances up and down their starting lineup so far. Some have been surprising and some have been disappointing, but whatever the case may be, here are the grades for the Chicago Cubs' starting lineup through eight weeks.

IF/OF Emilio Bonifacio - B+

Emilio Bonifacio
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IF/OF Emilio Bonifacio - B+

Emilio Bonifacio
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.285 batting average
11 steals

Bonifacio got off to one of the hottest starts in baseball this season and even though he's cooled off lately, he's still been one of the Cubs' most consistent hitters and he keeps proving how smart of a signing he was this offseason.

OF Junior Lake - B

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OF Junior Lake - B

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.280 batting average
5 home runs
17 RBIs
5 steals

Lake started off slowly this season, leading many to believe he may be in for a sophomore slump, but he's rebounded well. Already on pace to surpass his stats from last year, Lake could continue to be a pleasant surprise.

1B Anthony Rizzo - B

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1B Anthony Rizzo - B

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.270 batting average
8 home runs
23 RBIs
.407 on-base percentage

Rizzo is right around where he's been in the past statistically other than in on-base percentage. A much more patient approach has led to an impressive .400-plus OBP, which is a welcomed sight to the Cubs.

SS Starlin Castro - B

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SS Starlin Castro - B

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.280 batting average
6 home runs
23 RBIa

Castro is bouncing back nicely after a down year in 2013. Even though he's still not hitting around .300 where he was at the beginning of his career, Castro is flashing more power while hitting an acceptable .280.

OF Nate Schierholtz - F

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OF Nate Schierholtz - F

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.204 batting average
0 home runs
13 RBIs

Schierholtz, who was a revelation for the Cubs last season, has been absolutely abysmal in 2014. He still hasn't hit a home run all season long while barely hitting above the Mendoza line. Schierholtz certainly isn't doing the Cubs any favors as he's losing trade value by the day.

3B Mike Olt - C

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3B Mike Olt - C

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.175 batting average
9 home runs
24 RBIs

Most would certainly receive an F grade while batting .175, but Olt has made his hits count. He leads the team in both home runs and RBIs and actually has as many home runs as he does singles. As he gets more regular playing time, Olt can prove his true worth.

C Welington Castillo - C-

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C Welington Castillo - C-

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.245 batting average
5 home runs
20 RBIs

Castillo is driving in runs like the Cubs would like him to, but he isn't getting on base nearly enough. His OBP is below .300, which needs to improve, but if he can get that squared away, he can continue to be a solid contributor for the Cubs now and in the future.

2B Darwin Barney - F

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2B Darwin Barney - F

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.175 batting average
2 home runs
8 RBIs

Barney continues to struggle at the plate and his playing time has been cut considerably because of it. The Cubs had likely hoped Barney would turn it on at the plate so they could trade him, but it just seems like he can't put anything together at the dish.

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