Friday, September 16, 2016

Sound the Division Bell

Though it has been a forgone conclusion for a little while now, it is now officially official:  late last night, the Chicago Cubs clinched the NL Central divisional title!  Although, it took a Cardinals loss rather than a Cubs win to seal the deal; that said, a championship always feels pretty sweet, no matter how you get there.  This is the fourth such clinching for the Northsiders in my 27 years of life (1989, 2003, 2007-08); of course, along the way, there have been two Wild Card wins, as well (1998 & 2015).

Now, 7 playoff appearances in 27 years might seem like a pretty pathetic ratio to some other fan-bases... but, as a Cubs fan, I'm downright spoiled.  Consider the fact that the club once went 39 years without even tasting October baseball (1945-84).  Comparatively, people my age and younger have had it pretty damn good!

Anyway, like those '89 "Boys of Zimmer," this year's roster is built around youth....

Like those '03 "In Dusty We Trusty" Cubs, this year's squad is lead by a skipper who's charm and charisma has captured the city's attention...

Like those '07 "Cardiac Cubs," this year's team has never felt like they were out of any game and have a knack for the comeback, thanks to their strong, top-to-bottom lineup...

Like those '08 "It's Gonna Happen" Cubs, this year's edition is the best team in baseball going into the playoffs, powered by a ton of All-Stars...

As fun as all of those seasons were, here's hoping that the 2016 National League Central Division Champions differ from those previous iterations in one key way - by being known as more than just Divisional champs! I'm thinking World Series Champions has an awfully nice ring to it.

However, first things first (let's not get too far ahead of ourselves).  Now that the division has been clinched, the next step is to go out and nail down the best record in the National League.  Securing that honor allows the Cubs to face the (hopefully tired) Wild Card winner with three home games in a five game set.   The magic number for that mark is at 10 over the Washington Nationals and I'd say the odds are pretty heavily in Chicago's favor.

Buckle up, folks - this is going to be one exciting ride.


  1. If the Jays are out of it at any point, I'm going for the Cubs. I want to stop hearing about 1908 lol

  2. Rest up, boys. Our hopes are high.

  3. I think the most important thing that this Cubs team has going for it is a big window. Lots of young players means that they are going to get several cracks at it. As a Cardinals fan I have seen some of their best teams during my life time fall short, while their last two World Series winners in 2006 and 2011 scrapped into the playoffs, beat teams they probably had no reason to beat, and ended up winning it all. As a person who lived half of their life in St. Louis my first instinct is to be anti-Cub, but as a guy who now lives in North Carolina they have Ben Zobrist, Montgomery, Hammel all from the Durham Bulls, a bunch of former USA Baseball players, and Federowicz who went to UNC. Go Cubs Go???