Chicago Cubs: Can Daniel Murphy awaken the team’s offense?

(Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images)
(Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images) /

The Chicago Cubs are in the midst of one of their worst offensive stretches of the season. With Daniel Murphy on his way, the team will look to turn the tide.

The Chicago Cub’s offense is struggling right now, to say the least. After splitting a four game series vs the Pittsburgh Pirates in which they scored just one run per game all on solo home runs the offense followed up a much-needed off day with, you guessed it, just one solo home run in a 2-1 loss vs the lowly Detroit Tigers.

This is the first time since 1934 that the Cubs have scored one run in five consecutive games, a feat I’m sure they aren’t too proud of. They have gone 0 for their last 22 with runners in scoring position, and most of their hitters have looked lost at the plate. With a lineup built to score a ton of runs, their offensive woes have been truly baffling.

There is, however, a light at the end of the tunnel in the form of Daniel Murphy. The team acquired the 33-year-old veteran in a waiver trade with the Washington Nationals on Tuesday afternoon in exchange for Class-A infielder Andruw Monasterio and a player to be named later or cash considerations.

Murphy, a known Cub-killer, is in his 10th major league season and had a bit of a slow start after coming off of microfracture surgery in the offseason to repair damage to his right knee. However, he has since turned things around batting .340 since the All-Star break with 5 home runs. Overall for the season, he is slashing .300/.341/.442. But probably most exciting of all, is his Wrigley Field slash line of .413/.440/.702.

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Fans undoubtedly remember Murphy most for his infamous four-game performance in the 2015 NLCS. As a member of the New York Mets, he absolutely torched the Cubs with four home runs (one in each game) and essentially single-handedly carried the Mets into the World Series.

Since then, Murphy has easily been one of the most hated Cubs’ opponents in recent memory.

That will soon change, though. That is, of course, if Murphy provides the Cubs with the same offensive firepower he’s put on display against them time and time again.

Considering just how well he plays at Wrigley Field, I don’t see a scenario in which he wouldn’t. And let’s be honest, things can’t get much worse for the Cubs offensively right now.

The team has just begun a stretch of 23 games in 23 days. With one loss already, the Cubs desperately need a spark, and Murphy could be just what the doctor ordered to get this team out of a massive slump.

We’ve reached crunch time in the MLB season, and it looks like we are poised for a wild finish in the National League. While Chicago has maintained the top record to this point, they’ll quickly find themselves on the outside looking in if they don’t get their bats going.

It’s safe to say that the addition of Murphy came as a surprise to everyone. And as odd as it sounds, the Cubs fate may very well rest solely in the hands of a man who was once their greatest foe. Irony, at its best.