Weeks later the vibes are still in the air. There are no words left to describe the “Joys of…Baseball” and what has been happening in the hearts of Cub fans and the world of Wrigleyville and beyond. So consider what follows an exercise in echoing and recycling what has already been written about the seismic Cubs of 2016.
There are three (at least) observations that merit repeating:
First, it takes two great teams to create a great World Series. The Cleveland Indians had their own agenda, a dugout full of talent and their A game to achieve it, which they nearly did. That one team would come up short was inevitable. In this case, “short” barely works for the Indians. That dugout at game’s end felt too tragic as it emptied sadly into the clubhouse. But the team took their pride and talent with them. Both will be back in 2017.
Second, baseball can hardly get much better than what this Series offered. Every aspect of the sport was showcased from beginning to end. Both veterans and rookies were victims of the pressures of post-season play. But they also rose magnificently to the task at hand. Desire and intensity were tangible; both players and managers stretched their talents with every pitch. Even the Umps were “on their game.”
Third (and this is a spin), these Cubs can never “do it again!”
This World Series is one for the books and history. The intensity of the collision of these two title-starved teams was epic far beyond Chicago and Cleveland. The context of this clash can never happen again, ever. Another trophy in 2017? Why not? But…not like this. Baseball is, after all, baseball; anything can happen…and usually does.
The lore of the sport is full of great stories, but this one will forever rank among the best of them. Gus Sianis’ curse of the Billy Goat may forever be laid to rest but that tale is immortal, more alive than any tombstone. “Any team can have a bad century” should be copyrighted by the Cubs and the label “loveable losers” happily passed on to another team. The makeover of Wrigley Field and Clark & Addison harbingers a new feel for season ticket holders, every fan and pilgrim entering the Friendly Confines.
There will also never be a summer or a season quite like the one we have just enjoyed. But the seasons ahead are full of promise. The Cubs have talent, youth, experience, and characters enough to provide the best show in town next season…and then some.