“Y’all might want to a grab a sweater or a jacket, it’s going to get cold”. The two young teenagers are dying laughing at the older gentleman’s statement. They tell each other, “What does he know, its 80 degrees in July in Chicago.” They walk out the house with their short-sleeve shirts and jeans on. The group jump on the “L” and head to Wrigley Field. The Cubs are winning (for a change) in the 4th inning and the teenagers are enjoying the beautiful sunshine. Then the unexpected happens. The wind off Lake Michigan somehow makes it over the ivy covering the outfield and into the stadium. It’s the 6th inning and the teenagers are shivering, but they have to be tough. They manage to survive the 7th inning stretch and listen to the great Harry Caray sing “Take Me Out to the Ball Game”. The gentleman asked if they were cold and wanted to leave. The youngsters replied, “No, we good”. Then the 8th inning came, and it was only 4pm. The older gentleman begins to laugh at the youngsters, “I tried to tell y’all to bring something but you didn’t want to listen to me.” The youngsters survived the game, and a Cubs win despite frostbite. Ok, it wasn’t THAT cold, but it felt like it. My cousin and I should have listened to my dad, forgetting that he lived in Chicago for a while. That was one of the fondest memories I have from attending several Chicago Cubs games. That’s why this year’s World Series was especially special.
The Cubs started the season as the prohibited favorites to win the National League and make it to the World Series. However, there was a team in San Francisco that was really good and had won the World Series in 2012 and 2014. Even years seemed to be their thing lately. The Cubs would face the San Francisco Giants in the National League Division Series and win three games to one. It seemed like they could actually make it, the only team standing in their way now was the Los Angeles Dodgers. The Dodgers had one of the best pitchers in all of baseball, Clayton Kershaw. Thankfully for the Cubs, it was no way he could pitch four games. The Cubs won that series four games to two and were headed to the World Series.
The Cubs would play the Cleveland Indians, a team that hadn’t won a World Series since 1948. The Indians had chances in 1995 and 1997 to win it all but came up short. Both teams were extremely dormant when it came to winning it all, which added to this World Series being one of the best ever. The Indians and the city of Cleveland were riding the postseason high of the Cavaliers winning the NBA championship a few months ago. This must be the year of Cleveland (apparently the Browns didn’t get the message) they were thinking. The first game would justify that thinking as the Indians would win 6-0. The Cubs’ bats were null and void thanks to the solid pitching by Kluber. In Game 2, the Cubs found those bats and won 5-1. They were now headed home to Chicago to end the series. Indians said not so fast, as they won the next two games. The Cubs were in danger of losing the World Series at home, being down three games to one. They did what they had done all year, which was never quit. They won and forced the series to go back to Cleveland. All the Indians had to do was win one game. Just one game in two tries at home. Not since the 1979 Pirates had a team come back from 3-1 and won the World Series on the road. The Cubs gave themselves a chance by winning Game 6 and setting up a winner take all Game 7. In that final game, they came out firing on all cylinders. They took an early 5-1 lead, and the champagne was in the locker room. Then the Indians scored three runs in the bottom of the eighth inning to tie the game. What?! This can’t be happening! After going to extra innings, a 17-minute rain delay ensued. This seemingly helped refocus the Cubs who scored two runs in the top of the 10th to go on to win 8-7. Yes, the 2016 World Series Champions are the Chicago Cubs.
The parade and rally to celebrate the team was two days later. Only 5 million people decided to show up. It was the seventh largest gathering of people in human history, the largest in the Western Hemisphere. This was almost three times the amount of people who showed up when the Chicago White Sox won the World Series. It was amazing to see firsthand that many people who have waited a lifetime for this moment. Many were sharing stories of going to Cubs games similar to mine or fond memories of loved ones who never saw it take place. The Cubs can party from now till this time next year, when a new champion is crowned. I don’t think even then it will matter. Manager Joe Maddon summed it up best, “Let’s hope it’s not another 108 years. Let’s do this again next year.”
“Go, Cubs, Go!
Go, Cubs Go!
Hey Chicago, what do you say?
The Cubs are gonna win today.”