It hasn’t happened since Harry Truman was in office, but the Chicago Cubs are in the World Series after beating the Los Angeles Dodgers in front of their hometown fans at Wrigley Field five to nothing in the sixth game of the National League Championship Series. The Cubs beat the best pitcher in baseball, Clayton Kershaw, who had shut down the team in his previous outing against them in the second game of the series, earning a return trip to baseball’s biggest stage for the first time in 71 years in the process.
Chicago’s leadoff hitter, Dexter Fowler, started things off with a double that led to the first run, and the team picked Kershaw and the Los Angeles defense apart from there, scoring three runs in the first two innings. Kyle Hendricks, the Cubs starting pitcher, gave up just one hit and went seven innings without giving up a run. Willson Contreras and Anthony Rizzo hit home runs and the team just kept hitting from there. There was no black cat, no Gatorade on spilled on any gloves and no Steve Bartman. The Cubs were in total command all throughout the game.
Now that one drought is over, the Cubs have an even more infamous long streak to contend with, possibly a much more daunting one, as they try and win a World Series championship. Well over a century has passed since the Cubs beat the Detroit Tigers in 1908 to stand at the top of the baseball mountain, but now the team has a chance to get there once again. The only thing standing between them and glory is another franchise that is looking to capture their own first championship since 1948, the Cleveland Indians.
There is little doubt that the two teams with the longest droughts in baseball (and all of American sports unless you count the Arizona Cardinals of the NFL who haven’t won a championship since 1947 when they were the Chicago Cardinals) will end up being one of the most memorable endings to a baseball season in the game’s long history. Two Midwestern baseball teams at the end of the season as October comes to a close, both in search of an elusive title. It will no doubt be a World Series to remember.