I sit here tonight reflecting on the Cubs’ first half, with a tape of Harry Caray in the background. Ah Harry, he had a way with words for sure. I harken back to the old days when the Cubs are concerned. The days of Ernie, Billy and Ronnie to more recent days of the Red Baron, Mad Dog and Prior.
But who can forget Jack, Lou, and Vince on the radio. Yes, the long summer days I spent listening to these broadcasting legends brings a certain nostalgic flashback and a longing to hear, and see, them all one last time. No doubt it wasn’t easy for these golden voices to put a good spin on a game where the Cubs were losing 12-4, but for 3 hours every day these gentlemen could put even the most hardened die hard Cub fan at ease.
This brings us to this year, we are now starting to see the fruits of Jed and Theo’s plan slowly ripen before our eyes. Yes, we had to suffer through the rebuild, but now this team is exciting and fun again. To be honest, I haven’t been this excited for a Cubs team since the days when the Cubs beat the Pirates in the clincher! I cant wait to turn the game on, and see what magic Joe Maddon will work next. The Cubs landing Joe was the coup de grace in Theo’s plan. Although he didnt start out to land him, point is that he did when the oppurtunity presented itself. The pieces started to click: the young players brought up started to produce, pieces like Rizzo and others were added, and now suddenly, the Cubs are a playoff worthy team who are exceeding expectations by a year at least. Where this team ends up this year is anybodys guess.
The players of Rizzo, Lester and even the magician Maddon himself have stated, “Why Not Us” to win the division and even progress farther. Its rhetoric like this that makes us Cub fans proud of our guys, and even more so, proud of our manager. Its been a long time since anyone with, let alone on, the Cubs have made such bold statements, and had the talent to back it up.
In summary, as we turn the page on the first half, lets enjoy the ride our team is on and although we don’t agree on all the moves by Mr. Maddon, he’s weaving us into a championship type team, both on and off the field. No matter where we end up this year, it’s been a heck of a ride thus far and with Ronnie, Harry, and Ernie looking down (yes, Cub fans,this could be the year!). Have fun with it, get mad, but in the end, isn’t this year just a little bit more fun and promising of things to come than any in recent memory?
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