October is creeping closer and something unusual is happening in Chicago. Around this time, Chicago sports fanatics like myself are excited for one thing – Bulls season. Although we still anxiously await what Fred Hoiberg, also known as the Mayor, has in store for our Bulls, we are also anticipating something else. This “something else” is very odd, something that most Chicagoans forgot was a real thing, something that happens as often as Halley’s Comet: the playoffs. Now most of you are asking, “What playoffs happen in October?” which is totally understandable because it rarely gets talked about in Chicago, but the playoffs that I am talking about are the Major League Baseball playoffs.
Unlike most cities, Chicago is fortunate to have two major league teams, two chances to bring the World Series to the Second City, or (as it commonly happens) two chances to be the laughing stock of the league. But the times have CHANGED. Well, at least for one side of the city.
Yes, it is true, it’s time for the playoff push and the North Siders of Chicago are finally singing a new tune. We’ve become accustomed to saying “there’s always next year,” but this year we’re embracing a tune that’s taking the city by storm. We’re singing “Go, Cubs, Go!” If you’ve ever watched a home Cub’s game after a win, you’ve heard the famous “Go, Cubs, Go!” anthem. This year, thanks in part to the marvelous work of Theo Epstein, Joe Madden, and Rizzo and the Gang, the anthem has grown much louder and has become more popular.
The Cubs bet a large portion of the fan base on the future by drafting Kris Bryant and acquiring key pieces such as Javier Baez and others. Luckily, us Cubs fans no longer have to look to the future; instead, we must look to the past – 1989 to be exact. In 1989, a popular movie by the name of “Back to the Future Part II” was released. Although the movie had many memorable comedic parts, one part that is often overlooked is the fact the movie predicted that in 2015, the Cubs would win the World Series. Usually, I do not take part in these conspiracy theories or Hollywood prophecies, but for this one, I’m all in. I’m willing to believe in a movie more than the statistics and analytical reviews of ESPN and others. We need to break this Billy Goat curse.
Even though we are currently in the second wild card spot and have a slim-to-none chance of winning the division, I still have faith. Many wild card teams have went on to win it all (just look at the defending champions, the San Francisco Giants, who we swept this season). Our president, Theo Epstein, was part of a wild card team to win the World Series – the 2004 Boston Red Sox –which is why I refuse to let anyone crush my Cubbie pride.
We have all the pieces that we need to win: two aces (Jon Lester and Jake Arrieta), all-stars (Anthony Rizzo and Kris Bryant), veteran leadership (Grandpa David Ross), and spunk (Joe Maddon and lucky socks). Something magical is in the air and it’s about time that we all just stop and enjoy the ride that the Cubbies have allowed us to take part in.
NOTE TO PROFESSORS: WHEN the Cubs win it all, please do not assign any homework, test, or projects, this will be a national… no… GLOBAL holiday. This will be the most exciting day since Otto Frederick Rohwedder invented sliced bread.
Christian Gray is a senior majoring in marketing with a focus in promotion and communications and a minor in economics. He is president of the Student Activities Board. When he’s not planning events or doing schoolwork, you’ll catch him watching something sports related (#KOBE) or vibing out to music. His career goal growing up was to be Batman. He won’t tell you if he was successful on that mission, but let’s be real – have you ever seen him and Batman in the same place before?