The 2009 Cubs were a major letdown, and the loss of Mark DeRosa the previous offseason was seen as a big reason for the failure. Fans and media members alike pined for his affable, hard-working, everyman personality and slightly above average skills. Now that a year has gone by, a new Mark DeRosa needed to emerge, and that’s just what’s about to happen as OF Reed Johnson signed with the Dodgers.

“Just like DeRosa was an important part of the 2008 team that didn’t do anything special, Reed was key to last year’s unsuccessful club,” said Cubs GM Jim Hendry. “But for some damn reason, if the season goes south I’ll hear what an idiot I was for letting him go to the Dodgers.”

The Cubs outfield situation was a big question mark heading into the winter. Hendry signed Marlon Byrd and Xavier Nady to help plug some holes, which basically left no room for Johnson. Just like last winter when Hendry dealt DeRosa for three pitchers young pitching prospects, not bringing back Johnson was based on decisions that were attempts to strengthen the team. However, that’s not how fans will most likely see it.

“Sure, Reed and Mark have big hearts and are likeable guys,” said Hendry. “But last time I checked, you don’t win the World Series with a smile. I’m actually not exactly sure what it takes to win the Series, but that’s a topic for another discussion.”

By Brad Zibung, founder and editor in chief