Let me tell we something, my friend. Hope is a dangerous thing. Hope can expostulate a male insane. It’s got no use on a inside. You improved get used to that idea.
Ellis Boyd “Red” Redding from The Shawshank Redemption, who might only as good be vocalization of being a fan of a Chicago Cubs as many as he is a prison.
Many like him have grown accustomed to a scars of before hopes. So many so that there’s an annual well-salted abdication to a fait accompli of Cubs futility — a force that works to vacate a blind faith of that other coterie of a Wrigleygoers who can inexplicably purify their smarts purify of any yearly shortcoming.
That’s where any side of a North Side essence stands right now. Following a four-game brush during a hands of a New York Mets in a National League Championship Series, there are those unexpected horrified that a organisation they started unequivocally profitable courtesy to in Sep has been so handily tighten down—mostly around whiffing during pitches and a clumsy defense, both of that were problems all season. Then there are a “Reds”—the ones who knew they’d arrive during this disappointment; who know in their skeleton this Shawshank of Cubs fandom is an warranted life judgment of unhappiness one contingency embrace, rather than fight.
There’s also a special organisation of crazy-embarrassing Facebook friends who put infinite appetite into “YOU GOTTA BELIEVE” delusions that a Cubs would somehow come behind from an 0–3 hole and still win a World Series. You know, a ones who only posted their fifth chronicle of a Back to a Future II meme?
That isn’t hope. It’s a kind of irrationality that keeps state lotteries in business.
But sensitively and patiently, there also lay a Andy Dufresnes of a Cub world. The ones who get Joe Maddon, rather than see him as some sound-bite novelty. Those who listened organisation boss Theo Epstein contend from a Day 1 that there’s a devise in place, and that devise would start to bud… well, now. More importantly, though, he planted a seeds of postulated success — cultivating plantation prospects eternally while utilizing a inexhaustible bill to acquire proven talent.
“Here, there isn’t that same core in place, so a initial sequence of business is to build a core of immature players that we can build around and that can hopefully be a iota of winning Cubs teams for years to come,” Epstein pronounced in 2013. “And it all starts by building an effective scouting and growth operation. So that’s taken adult a infancy of a time given we’ve been here.”
These are a Cubs supporters for whom “fan,” as subsequent from “fanatic,” does disservice. The ones who can divorce themselves of goats and Bartmans and Cubbie occurrences and dumbass mythology and mystique. The ones who tell a Reds of Wrigley, “Hope is a good thing, maybe a best of things, and no good thing ever dies.”
The 2015 NLCS will not be a Cubs’ final dance of a century. For once, we don’t get a feeling they’ll keep hearkening to their modern-historical timeline, a depot patient’s heart guard dappled with occasional carefree blips of playoff life amid incomparable flat-lining: (beep) 1984 … (beep) 1989 … (beep) 1998 … (beep) 2003 … (beep beep) 2007, 2008 …
These Cubs will be a contender in 2016. An prepared theory would contend they’re expected a Las Vegas favorite to win a NL. Far some-more a certainty, anyway, than Anthony Rizzo’s unsuccessful prophecy that his organisation would win this year’s NL Central undisguised (instead, they had to settle for knocking a personality out of a playoffs). They mount to be postseason-capable for a foreseeable future.
Of course, a Reds will opposite with “nothing is a given,” “assumptions are dangerous,” and other demeanour of hard-knock wisdom. Scars, after all, are built on such stuff. And anyway, a half-empty drink crater is a favorite angle of internal media, who feed a fans who don’t know things like exit velocity.
For his part, Epstein addressed as many during 2014 Spring Training:
A lot of internal kick writers ask us all these desperate questions. Everyone contingency assume we’re miserable since we haven’t finished a good pursuit in a large leagues a final dual years. The questions always start, ‘How joyless is it being here?’ or ‘How expected are we to leave once your contract’s up?’ or ‘How unsatisfactory is …’
… There’s really a dichotomy with how we’re viewed from a outward and how we feel about ourselves as an organization. There’s a good vibe around here. The clarity of swell and intensity is palpable. We all feed off that and suffer entrance to work any day, so those questions mount out as being a bit disconnected.
Basically: You doubters were wrong, and all of we who don’t trust ball built on a truth of light rebuilding secure in modernized scouting and analytics — you’re idiots. But we, a Cubs organization, aren’t worried by you.
The Dufresnes of Cubdom omit the mentions of a Edwin Jackson contract, as yet an classification is going to strike on every move. Further, they acknowledge that when a organisation is this smart, a certain moves are organisation to transcend and protection opposite a disastrous ones. Such cynicism has turn so commonplace, in fact, as to flirt with farce.
After shouting and sighing during that, they cruise a drafting of “reach” Kyle Schwarber 16 months ago, and how he’s now a authorization personality in postseason home runs. They cruise a collect a year before that of about-to-be-named Rookie of a Year Kris Bryant, who a Cubs totally screwed adult on by watchful 12 days into this deteriorate to call him adult in sequence to have contractual control over him for an additional year. And they cruise a large dash signing of a “bust” like record-setter Jon Lester, and someone along a lines of a David Price this off-season to give them during slightest 3 horses come subsequent October.
The some-more pointed moves like Chris Coghlan and Miguel Montero. The highway spoliation of appropriation Jake Arrieta and Pedro Strop for Steve Clevenger and Scott Feldman, and getting years of Addison Russell and Billy McKinney for months of Jeff Samardzija and Jason Hammel. The plan’s prevalence in a ubiquitous market that has already constructed Jorge Soler and isn’t tighten to interlude there. The holdovers from a days before to Epstein and ubiquitous manager Jed Hoyer arriving, Starlin Castro and Javier Baez, proof able pieces either for a Cubs destiny or for some-more cat-like trades. And afterwards there’s a aged male of a core — 26-year-old Rizzo — the big-bat, slick-fielding MVP candidate.
Plus, we know, grant blanche of tenure coffers to spend whatever’s indispensable to win — today, tomorrow, a subsequent decade.
These Cubfolk are about finished crawling by a stream of tellurian rubbish and into a clarification sleet on a other side. Their wish wasn’t dangerous only since that wish was intelligent. They’re disposed to conjunction wait-til-next-year cockeyed optimism, nor sourness that defines itself by vouchsafing losing infer itself righteous. And their past is voluntary conjunction for a near-future of these Chicago Cubs, nor a fans that indeed know what’s up.
Despite a tenderness being felt right now — the pain that comes even with a many extraordinary of climbs that destroy to strech a top — their wish lies not in servile in a history, though in embracing a irrelevance. All that, and a organisation bargain that 2015 was both a bit of an overachievement, and a derivation of apropos a bona fide force in Major League Baseball, one that will shortly be a envy, rather than a laughingstock, of others.
These fans and their code of wish have ditched their jail judgment of insincere curses and friendly losing and are tighten to their really possess Zihuatenejo — to live out their days in a some-more intelligent, successful Friendly Confines, where a conformist tongue of aged has been forgotten.
“They contend it has no memory,” pronounced Andy Dufresne. “That’s where we wish to live a rest of my life. A comfortable place with no memory.”