Cubs 2020 MLB schedule: 5 AL Central stars fans need to know
MLB announced the full 60-game regular season schedule on Monday evening, so we finally have the who, when and where down for the unique 2020 campaign.
We also know pretty well how the Cubs stack up their division rivals, since the teams are so familiar with themselves. But what about that other Central division? The one that’s used to the DH? In 2020, the Cubs will face the A.L. Central teams more regularly, when they typically only play against them every few years. So who are the big names Cubs fans gotta keep an eye on when they take the field?
Here are the Top-5 stars from the A.L. Central the Cubs will play this year.
No. 5: Shane Bieber, Indians SP
In his second MLB season, Bieber turned heads and sent batters to the bench efficiently. He notched 259 Ks while maintaining a 3.28 ERA and 1.05 WHIP over 214.1 IP.
He also led the majors with two CGSOs and led the A.L. with a 1.7 BB/9.
In the first half of Spring Training, Bieber picked up right where he left off, giving up no runs, only two hits and one walk, while striking out nine in 7.2 innings of work.
No. 4: Salvador Perez, Royals C
The 2015 World Series MVP, Perez has been a reliable backstop for the Royals since 2011, winning five Gold Gloves and two Silver Sluggers along the way.
Perez missed all of 2019 rehabbing from Tommy John surgery, and recently hit the IL again after he tested positive for COVID-19, but once his quarantine is done (Perez said he feels fine), he should be good to go.
No. 3: Jorge Polanco, Twins SS
The Twins are loaded with superstars Cubs fans have likely heard of from their time terrorizing the National League. Josh Donaldson now calls Minnesota home, as does Sergio Romo.
But Polanco is a contact hitter who doesn’t get much of the limelight since the big boppers like Nelson Cruz overshadow him.
Still, Polanco is a consistent hitter who can steal a bag when needed and made his first All-Star game in 2019.
No. 2: Yoan Moncada, White Sox 3B
We don’t have to remind you about Eloy Jimenez or Dylan Cease. There was so much hype surrounding Michael Kopech’s debut that you probably know about him too. But before these super prospects, there was Yoan Moncada.
Moncada came to Chicago in the Chris Sale trade and had a bumpy start to his major league career. But things came together for him in 2019 and he showed why he was once regarded as the No. 1 prospect in the game.
He slashed .315/.367/.548 with 25 homers, 79 RBI, 5 triples and 10 SB. Moncada is a true five-tool athlete.
No. 1: Francisco Lindor, Indians SS
A true superstar, Lindor can change a game with his bat or his glove. For the past three seasons, he’s hit 30+ homers, 40+ doubles and stolen 15+ bags. He’s also won two Gold Gloves at shortstop, and had two Top-10 seasons for WAR.
At 26 years old, Lindor is just hitting his prime now so it’s not unreasonable to expect him to play even better this season.