The Nub

On Chi-Town’s Possible Champions and National Skipper

The verdict – as fans know – is just about unanimous: the young talent-laden Cubs will be winning for years to come. Their still-possible 2016 world championship is just the beginning. Theo Epstein and his staff have done a remarkable job of top-level recruitment. (Doesn’t Kyle Schwerber look like a budding Babe Ruth?). Thus, the good news for Cubs fans. The challenge the other 29 clubs face – especially the 14 in the NL – is daunting; worse yet, the Cubs’ dominance could discourage fan interest around both leagues.

The challenge facing the other owners and Commissioner Rob Manfred is to resuscitate hopes of an even playing field; that is, find a way to raise the competitive level of the rest of the teams.

On the political field, the take-home-pay gap separating well-educated, mostly white, members of the work force and their less-advantaged counterparts is a looming headache for the next president (a Chicago-area girl). A rise in the minimum wage would help. But one obvious way of narrowing the gap has been largely ignored by the likely new Skipper. Except for strong pro-union statements on Labor Day, Clinton has been restrained in her courtship of an organized blue collar work force. Two reasons for her possible discomfort: her six years as a member of Walmart’s board of directors; and, despite her current pro-union stance, lukewarm supporting labor leaders say they’d prefer that Bill Clinton’s close union advisers not be returned to the White House.

The two-field guess here: Hillary will weather the late e-mail storm and win with a narrower margin than anticipated a week ago. The Indians, with Corey Kluber, their ready-if-needed unconcealed weapon, will deny the Cubs their championship this year, a crown that will come in 2017 or ’18.


(More of The Nub, a team effort skippered by Dick Starkey, can be found at

(The Nub is a team effort skippered by Dick Starkey. Comments about blog issues are welcome. Previous Nubs may be found by scrolling below.)

About Richard Starkey

Dick Starkey handled media for former NY Governor Mario Cuomo, former Nassau County Executive Tom Suozzi and many other office-holders and candidates. He was sports editor of the Paris-based Herald Tribune. Perfect Pitch partner Robert Sullivan was the first to adapt focus groups to politics and has been called by Cuomo and others one of the "best" pollsters in the country.