I know the Cubs haven’t won a World Series in a few years or whatever. And I know the team we just swept won the World Series last year. But let’s be clear here – neither of those have anything to do with the fact that one team (mine) just swept the other. Literally… nothing. Now, if you insist on being the glory days guy who hasn’t moved on from things once accomplished, then by all means be my guest. The world needs ditch diggers too.
Act I – Sweep
I love a good sweep, but I’m having trouble figuring out which game was my favorite. Is it Arrieta’s near no-hitter in game 1 where the Sawx bats looked like they were the Davenport Iowa Little League All Stars up against Danny Almonte circa 1998? That was a good one. But then I think, could it be game 2, where Rizzo and Castro mounted a 9th inning surge against the game’s best reliever? That was also a good one. But then there’s game 3, where we took absolutely zero prisoners en route to scoring 16 runs on 19 hits including 4 Yabos, 5 doubles and a Darwin Barney triple. See for yourself (Spoiler Alert – Big Daddy Olt hit his into Russian air space):
That’s big stuff right there regardless of how you slice and dice it. We had a chance to sweep the world champs on their turf and we came out guns blazing. As a fan, it doesn’t get any better than watching your team go out and step on someone’s throat. Just deliver a pure ass kicking. And that’s exactly what happened. Start to finish, beginning to end, the Cubs took control of this series from the onset and never let go.
Act II – Chili Dog
I want to talk about the Cubs. But before I do, you need to know about my buddy Chili Dog.
I met Chili Dog freshman year of college. Real good guy – always down for a few cold ones, watching sports, gambling on said sports, getting rowdy, blah blah blah. Just your textbook good buddy. And like almost every guy I know, Chili Dog loves women.
But here’s the thing about Chili Dog… he REALLY loves the y chromosome. Like freakishly obsessed. Getting laid is honestly the only thing that motivates Chili Dog. (To the hardos skipping the rest of this so they can be the first guy in the comment section to say NO FUCKING SHIT CARL EVERY GUY IS LIKE THAT, trust me when I say Chili Dog is beyond over the top.) It’s flat out uncomfortable how much this guy cares about getting laid.
And here’s another thing about Chili Dog… he was just about as bad as you could get with women. College was one thing… You show up to a pregame, wear a collared shirt, don’t smell bad and have literally 1 goddamn ounce of confidence and you’ll do okay for yourself. Agreed? Yes of course you agree because there’s no arguing those facts. The problem a lot of us (yes, even you) run into is when you enter the real world and the other side of the getting-laid equation starts asking you about your job and 10 year plan and exercise habits and all that shit. And like almost all of us, Chili Dog brought the bare minimum to the table. He had a job he hated, he was making below average money at said job, and was suddenly carrying an extra two dozen pounds around the hips. A once achievable conquest almost immediately became an uphill battle Chili Dog simply was not prepared to fight.
So Chili Dog tried harder. Swinging for the fences if you will. He was your proverbial bull in the China shop. No matter how many times he went down in flames (or come on baby light my fire flames for those of you still using that joke), he always came back more aggressive than before. He’d walk into a bar, find the first girl that met his “would” threshold and he’d start going to work. And by “going to work” I obviously mean he’d order Jameson shots and talk about his frat (because he had nothing else to talk about) while awkwardly trying to conceal the fact that the buttons on his XL banana republic shirt were under an unfathomable amount of stress. As you can imagine, Chili Dog embarked on quite the cold streak – a streak that ultimately met its end when he purchased certain services from one of those middle aged hoodrat River North whores.
Then one day Chili Dog woke up and smelled the coffee. He would never meet his expectations or satisfy his unbearably intense needs going about his business like this. So Chili Dog shut it down. I mean completely shut it the fuck down. He put the bottle down, joined a gym, started riding his bike to work, went overboard on the paleo diet, and started making more sales calls. He calculated he earnings-per call and figured 30 more minutes a day of pounding the phones would cover his now-important lifestyle costs. The 30 minutes soon turned into an hour each day (due to some newly discovered energy) which then quickly turned into an obsession with his job. And within a few months Chili Dog went from being your run of the mill cube monkey to one of his company’s top earners.
It was all coming together for Chili Dog. He had confidence (the real kind), a much improved healthy physique, an even healthier paycheck and now an extremely positive outlook on life. Next thing you know, Chili Dog wasn’t approaching women like a jack rabbit on bath salts. He was calm and collected, spoke with a strong tone of self-assurance, and now finally started to look the part. It was a remarkable transformation that Chili Dog committed himself to, and it was this transformation that ultimately allowed Chili Dog to become a bonafide first team All-American cocksman.
Smokes started to fall left and right. And not the girl next door smokes us lesser fortunate guys idolize. I’m talking about the 5-star blue chippers that shutdown the BarstoolU servers on a Thursday afternoon. The ones you can’t even crack stick to because they’re so unfathomably hot that you can’t even wrap your head around an imaginary 15 seconds with them. I shit you not, Chili Dog is now knee deep in the life almost every guy desire. It was a life he attained by committing to a complete transformation predicated on sacrificing short-term wants in return for long-term needs. And now years after Chili Dog rebuilt himself from the ground up, I can confidently say that he’s the happiest guy I know. Wouldn’t you be the same?
I tell you all of this because the Cubs are going through a Chili Dog transformation right now. We’ve tried… HOPELESSLY… to assemble some form of winning baseball for the last 100 and some motherfuckin odd years. We went into every offseason asking “How do we get it done next year?” instead of “How do we build sustainable success?” We blamed countless managers and free agents and journeyman relievers and our day game schedule AND EVEN A GODDAMN FAN for our problems. And we just kept sucking at baseball year in and year out.
The Cubs, for literally over a century, have been Chili Dog at his all-time low – shamelessly stumbling through life trying to catch lightning in a bottle with absolutely zero consideration for the weather. There’s a little bit of Chili Dog in all of us… you, me, Big Cat, Ricketts… hell even Ronnie Woo Woo has a little bit of Chili Dog of him. But the writing is on the wall. The transformation is taking place. Baez and Bryant are so fucking talented it would take an act of God to stop them from being major impact bats in the middle of our lineup. Rizzo and Castro are pretending like 2013 never happened en route to posting All Star numbers . Jake Arrieta “found” his cutter and probably won’t give up another hit the rest of his career. In the meantime, Theo & Co. have continuously stockpiled prospect after prospect en route to assembling one of baseball’s greatest farm systems.
The progress is staggering. The success is inevitable. And when the renovation dust settles, we will be at the top of our game, ready to conquer the goals that have so long been desired. Just like my buddy Chili Dog.