This is going to be a pretty exciting year in baseball for me. It’s going to be exciting because my loyalty has shifted from a born loser that continually has a good team and a ceiling-less payroll to an up and coming team that plays America’s favorite past time almost directly in my own backyard. That’s right kids. I no longer skip backwards from Bill Schroeder and Craig Coshun to search for the often not Milwaukee televised voices of Len Kasper and Bob Brenly. And I most definitely never skip over Bob Uecker and Cory Provus to get to the still quite funny and riotous commentary of Pat Hughes and Ron Santo. I hereby declare: I am a 100% Brewer fan, 100% of the time.
That being said, a lot of people have asked me just how I came to be affiliated with the baby bears, so I will give you a short run down. As a child growing up in Milwaukee, the Brewers were in the American League and had other rivals to worry about. Back then we got spit upon by the Blue Jays, Orioles, Tigers, and Indians while paying very little attention to the National League standings. Another very important factor is, also as a child, there were generally four teams that dominated television coverage on the national level: The Yankees and Cardinals on Fox Saturdays after TWIB, The Atlanta Braves on TBS, and the Cubs on WGN. Historical dominance, cool uniforms, and possibly the best lead off hitter ever led me to be a Yankee fan, and regional loyalty aligned with the fact that afternoon baseball greeted me at the doorstep most days when I’d get home from school, helped me choose the Cubs. I owe nearly entirely my love of the sport of baseball to WGN telecasts of day baseball games. It was practically the only time that I commanded the remote. It is safe to say, when I wasn’t watching Masters of the Universe or G.I. Joe I was watching the Cubs and listening to the fantastic commentary of Harry Carey and Steve Stone.
While the great chatter of Harry Carey and Steve Stone were a big reason and retainer for my love of Cubs Baseball the clincher and overall reason I was reeled in was Ferris Bueller’s Day Off. In 1986 I was seven years old and as incorrigible as the day is long. After seeing that film, I had dreamed of skipping school to sit on the third base side of the “Friendly Confines” and catching a foul ball. I also wished I had that kick ass vest Broderick wore and even tried and failed miserably at impersonating Abe Froman, the Sausage King of Chicago, leaving the only attainable goal as Cubs fandom.
So, coming off of a great year by the Brewers, not thinking so highly of the horrific stories of bloodied fans at the hands of the rival faithful (rivalries should be fun, not blood splattering), and the fact that I can watch 140+ games on FSN (I love that I can actually watch nearly every game, not only because they’re televised but also because my wife wouldn’t tell me to turn off the Crew), I resign. I can honestly say that I will never hate the Cubs. Or wear this shirt for that matter:
But I reserve the right to laugh like hell every time I see it. C’mon, it’s pretty damn funny! No matter who wins the division, hell it may be Pittsburgh, can we try to keep the rivalry friendly and remember that we’re all baseball fans first. I know that I am.