November 6, 2016 [LINK / comment]
World Series 2016: joyous (and bittersweet) aftermath
The victory parade on Friday for the the world champion Cubs filled the streets of Chicago with over 5,000,000 people, one of the biggest human gatherings in history: "Cubstock," they called it.
On Saturday Night Live, Dexter Fowler, David Ross, and Anthony Rizzo appeared in two skits, one which was creepy and one in which they sang "Go Cubs, Go," along with noted Cubs fan (and former SNL regular) Bill Murray. They even had the lyrics on screen, like in that old TV show, "Sing Along With Mitch." That was pretty cool.
Friday's Washington Post had an article about the families of older Cubs fans who passed away in the weeks and months before World Series 2016. That hit pretty close to home for me. They focused on a guy named Louis DeBella, who died on October 5 at the age of 83. Referring to the Place of Eternal Rest, one of his family members said, "Don't worry. He had the best seats in the house."
And along a similar theme, the Washington Post sports page that day hypothesized that "Divine Intervention" was behind the rain delay after the ninth inning ended. Sports writer Barry Svrluga thinks those 17 extra minutes gave the Cubs time to pause and regroup mentally after the stunning game-tying rally by the Indians in the bottom of the eighth inning. Whatever the cause, it seems clear that the "Billy Goat Curse" is a thing of the past, and like the Red Sox since 2004, the Cubs can emerge from under their perennial dark cloud and compete like a normal team at long last. All is forgiven, Steve Bartman!
Progressive Field photos
Since I recently added a few more photos to the Wrigley Field page, I thought it would be appropriate to do likewise for Progressive Field page, which has six "new" photos (all from 2012), including this one that shows where Rajai Davis's game-tying home run in the eighth inning of Game 7 landed:
In one of the other "new" photos of Progressive Field, I noticed that there is (or was) a chair in front of the right field foul pole! So technically, a sharply-curving fly ball could cross the outfield wall in fair territory and still be called a foul ball. A similar situation once existed at Jack Murphy ("QualComm") Stadium in San Diego, according to Green Cathedrals author Phil Lowry.
I'll have to return to Progressive Field in the next year or two and get photos that show the revamped upper deck in right field, where about 3,000 seats were removed prior to the 2015 season. (Likewise for Coors Field.) I wonder if the Indians' front office regrets the decision to downsize their stadium? That would have been a hefty chunk of change from all those postseason games...
Gio Gonzalez will stay
Also in the Washington Post was news that the Washington Nationals opted to extend their contract with left-handed starting pitcher Gio Gonzalez, who struggled for much of the season but showed some improvement toward the end. However, they declined to do so for reliever Yusmeiro Petit, who became less and less effective as the season wore on.
Web page updates
Since baseball season is officially over, I'm starting to pay a bit more attention to football. I spent much of yesteray filling the numerous gaps in the Football use of baseball stadiums page. The chronological table is pretty much the same as before, but now all the gray text boxes that appear when the mouse hovers above the stadium links are complete, with brief chronological descriptions of the "comings and goings" of baseball and football teams in each stadium. (That's one of the pages that is inherently not suitable for mobile devices.) I also updated the various other Baseball chronology pages with the World Series results, etc. In the process of making those updates, I noticed an interesting pattern on the Annual chronology of baseball page: In each year since 2005, the World Series championship has alternated between American League (odd years) and National League (even years), except for 2010, when the St. Louis Cardinals edged the Texas Rangers in one of the most improbable comebacks ever.