POLLING PLACE

Chicago Sun-Times - - SPORTS - with steve green­berg

What the heck is wrong with the Cubs? Noth­ing, it seems. At the plate, they’re dis­play­ing the kind of dis­ci­pline that for­mer man­ager Joe Mad­don lamented not see­ing enough of over his last cou­ple of sea­sons. In the field, they’re mak­ing all the plays. On the score­board, they’re par­ty­ing — plenty of runs scored, not many given up — like it’s 2016.

So, then, what’s most right about the Cubs — own­ers of the best record in the big leagues? That was our first ques­tion in this week’s “Polling Place,” your weekly home for Sun-Times sports polls on Twit­ter.

“Play­ing the two eas­i­est di­vi­sions in base­ball, the NL Cen­tral and AL Cen­tral?” @pe­ter­brownysr of­fered.

That doesn’t seem like giv­ing nearly enough credit where it’s due. The Cubs are get­ting mean­ing­ful con­tri­bu­tions from up and down their ros­ter. Fol­low­ing man­ager David Ross’ lead, they’re hav­ing a blast in the dugout dur­ing games — “ba­si­cally play­ing high school sum­mer base­ball right now,” vet­eran An­thony Rizzo said. And we ought not over­look their as-yet-un­blem­ished record when it comes to play­ers’ coro­n­avirus test re­sults.

But none of those is what vot­ers chose — by a wide mar­gin — as the big­gest key to it all. And that’s start­ing pitch­ing. How good has it been? Put it this way: 11 times in the Cubs’ first 16 games, the starter al­lowed one or zero runs. That’s a recipe for a first-place cake­walk.

“Gotta find my Cubs T-shirts,” @rynelancer com­mented. “Wait, ev­ery time I do that, they go to [ex­ple­tive].”

OK, so maybe it’s still too early in the season to be talk­ing cake­walks.

On to the polls:

AP, GETTY IM­AGES

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