MU
Oak Leaves

November 18, 2016



Chicago Cubs' World Series Win Brings Families Together 


Cass Ratliff

The Chicago Cubs took its MU fans out to the ball game and then some as they made history by winning the World Series. They played the Cleveland Indians for the final game of the World Series at Progressive Field on Nov. 2, 2016, and won with a score of 8-7.

The Cubs pulled away early in the game, but the Indians quickly caught up and brought the game into an extra inning, leaving MU fans on the edge of their seats. “My thoughts were of pure ecstasy and then of darkest defeat,” said Manchester University student Chris Holsten who was watching from his study-abroad location in Strasbourg, France. “That went on for the majority of the game. When the Indians forced extra innings I thought it was over and the home field advantage was going to kick in. Thanks to an act of God, the Indians’ momentum was deterred by the rain delay and I once again believed we had a chance.”
 
The extra inning really had fans biting their nails. “I thought that was it,” said Manchester University student, Gianna Haller. “The Cubs weren’t going to win. But the rain delay made things exciting and gave me hope. I knew they’d win.”

Other fans weren’t worried at all. “I still thought they were going to win,” said education professor Mike Martynowicz. “They had been breaking records all season.”
When Chicago pulled away and won by a point to become the champions of the 2016 World Series, fans celebrated. “There is truly no way to put into words that feeling,” Holsten said. “I am not an emotional person and I found myself tearing up, thinking of all of the fans who have waited their entire lives for this. And, thankfully, I just had to wait 20 years and two days.”
 
Martynowicz thought about all the people in his family who had waited for this to happen and of those who are no longer here. “A loss would have been difficult,” Martyowicz said.
 
Loyalty to Chicago is pretty universal among fans. “I have been a Cubs fan since birth because I was raised in a family where it was ‘Support Chicago sports teams or do not get fed,’” Holsten said. “My dog’s name is Wrigley and my family flies the W flag after every win and takes it down before the start of the game the next day.” 
Family is a big part of being a Chicago Cubs fan. “My grandpa was from Chicago,” Martyowicz said. “Being fans of Chicago teams is passed down in our family.”
Being a Cubs fan is also something that you learn from birth. “I’m a fan because I grew up seeing my dad watch and listen to game after game for my entire life,” XXX said.  
 
Being fans of a team for so long creates a lot of memories that people get to keep and carry with them through every season and every game. “My earliest memories of being a Cubs fan is seeing Sammy Sosa do his little skip or jump after he knew he just crushed a homerun,” Holsten said. “I actually still have a Cubs tank top in my dresser that fit a 4-year-old version of me that I wore whenever my brothers, my dad and I ever played wiffle ball in our backyard. I would pretend to be ‘Slammin’ Sammy.’”
 
Martynowicz remembers being at his Grandpa’s house and just playing while the game was on. Cubs games were a part of his childhood environment.
 
Haller fondly remembers similar memories of swimming while her dad had the radio on listening to the game. 
The timing of the Chicago Cubs winning the 2016 World Series was crucial this year whether some realized it or not, especially during this particular election season. “Sports bring people together,” Martynowicz said. “They break down political walls and help people put things aside. Because of the number of Cubs fans and because of the nature of the political campaign, this is true right now more than usual.”