Ken Scherpelz

Wait till THIS Year!

Ken Scherpelz

I realize this is the time of year when those of us in winter weather areas should be preparing for snow by pulling out the shovels from the far corners of the garages we never got to cleaning out this past year—although we promised we would. I have to admit, while most are caught up in preparing for winter’s weather and the season’s many celebrations, I’m still basking in the warm glow brought about by my Boys of Summer.

And by “Boys of Summer,” I, of course, mean my Chicago Cubs. And by “Chicago Cubs,” I mean the 2016 World Series champions.

You may recall, in the fall of 2015, I wrote a blog post about the surprising success of the Cubs, the team identified as the owners of the longest championship drought in professional sports history. Although they made the playoffs that year, they couldn’t keep the momentum going to get past the National League Championship Series.

But this year—THIS year—they put on a show of talent and grit that raised the eyebrows of sports fans as they dominated their division and their opponents and most facets of the game on the way to their first World Championship in 108 years. The team in blue pinstripes that has let me down for the past 59 years finally—FINALLY—came through and won it all. I shared that moment of joy and relief with friends and family who had suffered alongside me, and I still replay highlights of that glorious Game 7 when the Loveable Losers became losers no more.

It’s been over a month since the Cubs came back from a 3–1 game deficit to beat the Cleveland Indians in a series that had something to please every fan of the game. And while snow is starting to gather on some ball fields previously covered in dust and chalk and sweat, Cubs nation is still reminiscing about a different season—baseball season. That final third-to-first out from Bryant to Rizzo presented the long-suffering and much-deserving fans of Chicago Cubs baseball with the greatest gift of all—their dreams actually coming true.

So go ahead with your preparations for and celebrations of winter. For me, those will just have to wait a little longer while I replay the dream-come-true of one spectacular summer.

Did You Know?

The number 108 held great significance in this year’s World Series championship. It had been 108 years since the Cubs last won the Series. There are 108 double stitches on an official Major League baseball. Before this year’s championship appearance, the Cubs had not won a World Series game since 10/8 back in 1945. The left and right field corners of Wrigley Field, home of the Cubs, are 108 meters from home plate. And the principal business of the Ricketts family, new owners of the Cubs, is located on South 108th Avenue in Omaha, Nebraska. And—believe it or not—this paragraph is exactly 108 words. It’s fate!

Photo credit: Arturo Pardavila III

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