As you may have heard, the Cubs will be playing in their first World Series game since 1945 this evening.
Though it's impossible to put into words, I know what I felt when the Cubs turned that pennant-clinching double play in Game 6 of the NLCS was a once-in-a-lifetime feeling. And as luck would have it, I have some cards to show from perhaps the premier fan of the team the North Siders defeated on their way to the Fall Classic: Greg of the Dodger-crazed "Night Owl Cards."
I won't gloat, I won't be cocky, but I will admit: it was especially sweet to see the Dodgers get manhandled in those last couple games after the way they demolished the Cubs in the 2008 NLDS. (That's right, I haven't forgotten about that.)
But in getting to the cards, Greg kicked things off with this terrific Max Scherzer All-Star Game insert from last year's Update, which features a cameo from none other than Cubs icon Anthony Rizzo.
With the way Rizzo's been swinging the bat lately, I'm betting he'll have a lot more than a mere cameo in this year's Series.
I'm expecting the Cubs to win it all (of course), but I sure don't think the Indians will be a pushover.
A very, very small part of me is sad I can't pull for the Clevelanders anymore, since they were probably my favorite team in the AL this year and have fielded some of my all-time favorite ballplayers, like Andre Thornton here. This superb '79 Topps Comic from Greg was new to me.
Quick side story: I work at a bookstore in O'Hare airport, and none other than current Indians skipper Terry Francona came through the store back in February before the season started. He bought a six-dollar greeting card and I parted by telling him: "I'll be rooting for the Indians this year."
Sorry, Tito, but I just can't root for you anymore.
Greg stepped up and knocked out a chunk of my remaining insert needs from 2015.
Willie Mays is so cool that he even makes that awful "Archetypes" design look halfway decent.
A couple shinys here.
The Reddick is a prism refractor from last year's Chrome, and the Kimbrel is one of those special megabox-exclusive sparkles from 2015 Update.
I obviously didn't have much reason to root for the Dodgers in the NLCS, but a tiny part of me wanted to see Josh Reddick get a couple knocks here and there. He's one of my favorite current big leaguers (he and I share February 19th birthdays, as I've mentioned many times on this blog), and the Dodgers picked him up at the trade deadline this year.
Both of my wishes came true: Reddick hit .364 in the NLCS without having a huge impact on the series, and the Cubs won in six.
Here's a couple Matt Kemps, and another one of those fantastic megabox sparklers, to boot.
Seems like ages since he was a Dodger.
Greg kept the parallel train going with these two bordered beauties.
The Bell remains one of the best All-Star cards ever made, I think.
I do still miss Triple Play, but I'll be the first to admit that the Hosmer isn't one of the better efforts from that set.
I've recently decided to move Orel Hershiser into the upper tier of my player collections, and Greg helped me out there with a nifty Duracell oddball of the Bulldog himself. Because apparently they just packaged baseball cards with anything in the '90s.
Oh, those were the days...
As you might know, Greg is building the '56 Topps set, and he decided to gift me with what I'm guessing is a double he picked up along the way.
Carlos Paula only played one full season in the big leagues (1955), but he sure got a fantastic card out of it. I'll take pretty much anything from '56 Topps people want to send me because it's such a gosh darn beautiful set, and bonus points if it features a defunct team like the Senators. Greg certainly hit the nail on the head with this one and everything else he included in this package.
Okay, I know you've probably been hearing stats like this all throughout the postseason, but here's another one: Walter Johnson was a 21-year-old pitching in his first full major league season the last time the Cubs won a World Series.
I think it's about time this team brought the Commissioner's Trophy back to the North Side of Chicago.