Jon Lester

Chicago Cubs loaded, ready for World Series title defense

Kris Bryant is back. Same for Anthony Rizzo and Jon Lester, too. Even 1908 is back in the picture.

That was the last time the Chicago Cubs won the World Series before Bryant and company ended the drought last November, beating the Cleveland Indians in a Game 7 classic . Now 1908 is the last time the franchise repeated as champions — and the goal beginning next week when the Cubs' pitchers and catchers report to spring training.

"I think we have the right group here that guys will just be able to realize what we did and how special it was, but just to realize how much better it would be to sustain that success and do it again the next year," Bryant said. "I...