Random Thoughts on the LCS and the Cubs

Today is Game 1 of the NLCS and it will feature two expansion teams. Tomorrow’s ALCS Game 1 features the long suffering but finally reprieved Red Sox and the long suffering Indians. The story lines are historically fascinating because Boston or Arizona may join the Marlins with their 2nd world series in the last decade, the Indians may record their first in half-a-century, or Colorado their first ever. Regardless, you have to give Bud Selig some credit because 3 out of 4 of his expansion teams have done well. This is all great for the game.

Update: It’s also great when you look at payroll:
#2 – Boston Red Sox ($143,026,214)
#23 – Cleveland Indians ($61,673,267)
#25 – Colorado Rockies ($54,424,000)
#26 – Arizona Diamondbacks ($52,067,546)

Now, a completely different issue.

The past couple of weeks have been full of stories about the 2003 NLCS and I must say that I, am happy the Cubs were eliminated.

I am offended by the Steve Bartman talk. In the ongoing efforts by the sports media to create mythical tales and the continual need of Cubs fans to think that they are doomed to suffer, the accomplishment of a very talented Marlins team has been ignored.

I must remind Cubs fans of what actually happened. Yes, the Cubs had a 3-0 lead with one out in the top of the eight inning of game 6 and until that point Mark Prior was on a roll. But, Juan Pierre doubled and then Luis Castillo fought off 7 pitches before the infamous incident. It wasn’t a fan’s fault that Prior walked Castillo on a wild pitch, it wasn’t the fan’s fault that red-hot Pudge Rodriguez singled and scored Pierre, and it definitely wasn’t a fan’s fault that Cubs shortstop Alex Gonzalez (the other one) booted what could have been an inning ending double play. Even then, the Cubs were still up 3-1. All in all, the Cubs used three different pitchers who loaded the bases three times in the inning and twice the Marlins hit doubles. Finally, don’t forget Game 7, when the Cubs blew a 5-3 lead without Bartman anywhere near Wrigley Field.

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