Cubs might soon be sellers, but is anyone buying that they shouldn’t have been better?

Either way, the next phone call Jed Hoyer makes could be one that sends Cubs fans spiraling into wait-’til-next-year misery.

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The Cubs’ Seiya Suzuki reacts after lining out in Milwaukee.

The Cubs’ Seiya Suzuki reacts after lining out in Milwaukee.

Patrick McDermott/Getty Images

Is the eye test a thing in baseball anymore?

Because the Cubs don’t fare poorly at all in that department, at least as far as your old pal here can see.

One must be careful typing words like those — “eye test” — because there’s an army of amateur sabermetricians out there who will unsheathe their calculators, protractors, slide rules and compasses and use them to inform you as to why you’re an idiot. Admittedly, most of it just goes over my head, though the “idiot” part resonates.

But the Cubs are at Yankee Stadium for the final series of the season’s first half, and there’s a chance they’ll go into the All-Star break facing a double-digit deficit in the division standings. That wouldn’t mean they were as colossally disappointing as the Mets and the Padres, who were supposed to be World Series contenders, or as broken and dysfunctional as the Cardinals, who have played terribly from the get-go, but still it would damn this Cubs team to the scrap heap of ignominy.

In a bad National League Central division, the Cubs are within a whisker of blowing what has looked like a clear opportunity to finish first.

And with the Aug. 1 trade deadline looming, these games against the Yankees are all that stand between the Cubs and another distasteful, demoralizing sell-off.

“Next starts here,” as the Cubs have been hashtagging? Please.

The 41-46 Cubs are one of 10 major league teams with at least three All-Stars but the only one with a losing record, and it’s not like any of the Cubs’ honorees were included by default. Starting pitchers Justin Steele and Marcus Stroman belong in Seattle as much as anybody. Shortstop Dansby Swanson has made the front office look good for giving him a seven-year, $177 million free-agent contract.

Is anyone complaining about second baseman Nico Hoerner, left fielder Ian Happ or starters Kyle Hendricks and Drew Smyly? Of course not. Young utility man Christopher Morel has bordered on sensational. Free agent Cody Bellinger has brought life to the lineup that Jason Heyward never could muster.

When the awful White Sox manage to win a game, it often appears to have been some sort of strange accident. When the Cubs win, it looks — again, the eye test — a whole lot like what they ought to be doing. They hit enough to contend in the division. Their rotation is up there with the very best in the NL. They’re the only team in the division with a positive (plus-26) run differential. Even the first-place Reds, who for more than a month have been — despite their bottom-of-the-barrel starting pitching — the hottest team on the planet, have been outscored this season.

The bullpen president Jed Hoyer put together has been a go-to area of blame; its 8-20 record and puny total of 12 saves are egregious to behold. So what are we supposed to make of it, then, that the Cubs’ bullpen ERA of 4.06 is tied for sixth-best in the NL and lower than those of the Brewers (4.07), Pirates (4.32) and Cardinals (4.46) entering Friday?

It can’t be all manager David Ross’ fault. Fans have hammered Ross, but he isn’t setting lineups or pulling bullpen levers without explicit guidance from Hoyer and his team.

It’s just not working, not adding up to the wins it should be. To an idiot, the whole thing is mystifying.

As for Hoyer, the next phone call he makes could be one that sends Cubs fans spiraling into wait-’til-next-year misery.

“When you look at a lot of the underlying numbers, we absolutely should be in the division race right now,” Hoyer said this week. “That’s the truth of the matter. Now, that doesn’t matter; they don’t put a banner up based on your underlying numbers. We have to translate that into wins and losses, and we haven’t done that well enough.”

When the Cubs were 12-7 after smacking around the Dodgers 13-0 at Wrigley Field, it felt like they might have something pretty good going on. The 14-29 stretch that followed was appalling. Then they lured most of us back in with an 11-2 streak, only to start futzing around again since blowing a 4-0 first-inning lead in the second of those games against the Cardinals in London.

They should be better than this. Instead, the plug is about to be pulled. What a futzing mess.

“We’re a good team,” Bellinger said. “I see it.”

I thought I did, too.

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