Sometimes they were good, sometimes they were bad. Sometimes they were terrible, and sometimes they were great. But even when the Chicago Cubs were great, they could never bring home the one thing that really matters in baseball: a World Series title. That all changed Wednesday night in Cleveland, as the Cubs defeated the Indians 8-7 in a 10 inning marathon game.
In 1908, the Model-T was invented, a Hershey bar cost two cents, and Cubs star pitcher Mordecai “Three-fingered” Brown made a pompous salary of $3,500 a year. The World Series culminated on October 14th in 1908, with the Cubs winning in five.
It was almost over in five in this series, as Cleveland led the series 3-1, but the Cubs pushed it to seven. But it didn’t just take seven; it had been 39,466 days since their last title. Countries rose and fell, two world wars occurred, technology changed too fast to keep track of, but one thing remained the same: the Cubs did not win the World Series. Even the Marlins, who formed in 1993, have won two World Series.
So when the four and a half hour game finally culminated, the Cubs and their fans could finally breathe a sigh of relief, because the Chicago Cubs had won the World Series.
As if the two teams hadn’t waited enough, a huge rainstorm delayed the start of the tenth; further extending the droughts each team has suffered (Cleveland’s last title was in 1948).
In the top of the tenth inning the World Series MVP could have been anyone. Ben Zobrist made the decision easier, after hitting .357 in the series; he drove in Albert Almora Jr. to give Chicago a 7-6 lead. Almora Jr. had pinch run for Kyle Schwarber after Schwarber started the inning off with his third hit of the game.
Miguel Montero knocked in Anthony Rizzo later in the inning to give Chicago the insurance run that they needed. Bryan Shaw gave up both runs and went on to take the loss.
In the bottom of the 10th Cleveland did manage to score on Rajai Davis’s single, but not enough as Mike Montgomery relieved Carl Edwards and tallied the save.
Davis’s hit in the tenth was clutch; however what he did earlier was far more crucial at the time.
When Aroldis Chapman entered the game in the eighth, the Indians were faced with the impossible task of scoring three runs before Chapman recorded the final four outs. So what did Cleveland do? This is game seven; they scored three runs, two of which came on a two run home run hit by Davis.
That was the type of game it was in Cleveland, as unexpected heroes rose to the occasion multiple times. One of those guys was David Ross, who hit a solo home run in the sixth to put Chicago up 6-3 at the time.
Ironically, an inning earlier, when Ross entered his final game of his career, he had a completely different experience. As Cub’s manager Joe Maddon pulled his starter, Kyle Hendricks, he also pulled his starting catcher, Wilson Contreas, who had hit an RBI double in the fourth.
Controversially, the Cubs had moved on from Hendricks to Jon Lester in the middle of the inning. Maddon’s decision immediately backfired as Lester’s wild pitch allowed two Indians to score, after the ball caught Ross in the face, knocking the 37-year-old to the ground.
Lester went on to allow only one run, and although Hendricks couldn’t get through five innings, he certainly outpitched his opponent.
Corey Kluber was unhittable in the 2016 postseason, until game seven. Perhaps overworked, Kluber made his third start in nine days of Wednesday, and this time, the Cubs were on to him.
It was evident right off the bat, literally. Dexter Fowler became the first player to lead off a game seven with a home run in what was one of the four runs Kluber gave up in his four inning start.
The Cubs also got to Andrew Miller for the first time all series, as Javier Baez homered and Anthony Rizzo hit an RBI off the reliever. In fact, Kluber and Miller allowed more runs (6) in game seven than they did all series (4). Kluber did not even record a strikeout.
The game was the most viewed baseball game since 1991 and the highest rated televised event of 2016, besides the super bowl.
It was a game people having been waiting to watch for a long time. Cubs’ fans, baseball fans, and everyday Americans have been waiting for this day for a long time. That day is finally here, and it can finally be said:
The curse is over. The Cubs are world champions.