Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

In 2016, the Cubs snapped a 108-year World Series drought and seemed destined to build a modern dynasty. 3 years later, they've been eliminated from the playoffs following a late-season collapse — and could be set for sweeping changes this offseason.

Why it matters: The death of the Cubs' dynasty (that never really existed) proves just how difficult it is to sustain greatness in baseball.

  • Unlike basketball, where a trio of superstars can win you a title, 3 baseball players aren't able to carry a team. And you can't remake your roster in one offseason, either. You need organizational depth — and a long-term plan.
  • Unlike football, where a new offensive/defensive scheme can make all the difference, baseball has no "schemes." For the most part, every team is playing the same game. There's no outsmarting your opponent.
  • Unlike hockey, where someone like Cale Makar can make an impact literally 2 days after his college career ends, baseball requires years of player development. The Cubs failed in that department, especially with pitchers.
  • Unlike soccer, where a few game-winning goals can alter the course of a season, baseball is such a slog that a team's record after 162 games is more about how well the roster was built, rather than whether or not you made a few game-winning plays.

The bottom line: "Ultimately, maybe none of the Cubs' struggles should come as too much of a surprise," writes WSJ's Jared Diamond (subscription).

  • "Dynasties rarely happen in today's baseball — no team has won consecutive championships since the New York Yankees completed their three-peat in 2000."

Worth noting: The Astros have dynasty written all over them after taking a similar path as the Cubs (tank, rebuild, emerge as contender), all while relying more heavily on analytics and doing a much better job developing talent.

Go deeper: Baseball's season of extremes

Go deeper

Justice Department sues Google over alleged search monopoly

Illustration: Lazaro Gamio/Axios

The Justice Department and 11 states Tuesday filed an antitrust lawsuit against Google, accusing the company of using anticompetitive tactics to illegally monopolize the online search and search advertising markets.

Why it matters: The long-awaited suit is Washington's first major blow against the tech giants that many on both the right and left argue have grown too large and powerful. Still, this is just step one in what could be a lengthy and messy court battle.

Updated 2 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

  1. Politics: Americans feel Trump's sickness makes him harder to trustFlorida breaks record for in-person early voting.
  2. Health: The next wave is gaining steam.
  3. Education: Schools haven't become hotspots.
  4. World: Ireland moving back into lockdown — Argentina becomes 5th country to report 5 million infections.

In photos: Florida breaks record for in-person early voting

Voters wait in line at John F. Kennedy Public Library in Hialeah, Florida on Oct. 19. Photo: Eva Marie Uzcategui/AFP via Getty Images

More Floridians cast early ballots for the 2020 election on Monday than in the first day of in-person early voting in 2016, shattering the previous record by over 50,000 votes, Politico reports.

The big picture: Voters have already cast over 31 million ballots in early voting states as of Tuesday, per the U.S. Elections Project database by Michael McDonald, an elections expert at the University of Florida.