While the Big Red October fading light of autumn is still a month away, the NL Central and the overall race for the Wild Card will no doubt involve nail-biting, rally cap wearing, hair-pulling excitement.
If you’re a Chicago Cubs fan the fire is just getting started. ESPN affiliate, FiveThirtyEight details out “The Happiest and Saddest Fans in Baseball” and Cubbies are trending hotly according to Reddit posts. Is it simple optimism that look beyond the misery of elders, ghosts of lives who never had the luxury of seeing a World Series game played at Great Wrigley? Or is it a great new generation of die hards who can will themselves and their Cubs to a Pennant?
If those whippersnapper baby bears can pull themselves into the Postseason, will they be the 2008 underachievers that were ceremoniously swept by the Dodgers; the Steve Bartman version of 2003 which crushed Harry Caray’s already deceased soul? Or, is this 2015 Chicago Cubs version still, always and evermore haunted by the fiery and ghostly words of Billy Sianis, the Billy Goat Tavern owner who placed some sort of Voodoo like spell on Cubs teams after he and his goat were booted from Wrigley Field during a World Series game in 1945?
After speaking with several Cubs fans, it seems there is a calm exhilaration and simple ignorance to the apparitions, hexes, voodoo dolls of baseball. Is this simple unawareness of history on purpose? Or just feigned ignorance like a surfer who refuses to mention anything regarding big fish with razor sharp teeth? Either way it’s catchy.
There is something about this Cubs team that is ferocious enough with the bat, starting pitching, enough fangs in the bullpen to be a force that could do it this year. Is it enough? Here is a case-study. Nobody, not a sports writer outside of Haight Street thought the 2010, 2012, 2014 San Francisco Giants could topple Bryce Harper, the mighty Phillies, formidable Cards.
While Cubs fans everywhere may simply and casually cheer, and daydream of vanquished demons. 2015 has all the trappings of a bigger plan.
What will it be like if the Cubs earthshakingly win the World Series, no longer lonely as night in empty America streets, a drought of over 100 years? Might we bring ‘ol Bartman and a goat back to Wrigley and celebrate him as a fan and the ups and downs of generations in lost stares with each season of hope!