The Chicago Cubs have finally won a World Series. It didn’t matter who a person was rooting for or where they were from, every single baseball fan knew that they had just witnessed history.
The 2016 World Series was a historic series for many reasons, the most obvious being that it had been a century since the Cubs had won. During the series and even during the winners’ ceremony held in Chicago, commentators pondered this: Theodore Roosevelt was the president, Taft would win the 1908 election to become his successor, TV as we know it wasn’t invented, and there had been no world wars.
The fact that the Cubs won at all is special, to say the least; but really, the whole series was extraordinary. Game 7 will go down for many as one of the best games they’ve ever seen, let alone one of the best World Series games. The Cubs came back from a 3-1 deficit to win the series; something that, according to Sports On Earth, only five other teams have accomplished in the history of the World Series.
What else made this series exceptional?
1. So Much Waiting
According to CNN, the Cleveland Indians hadn’t won a World Series since 1948. So, now we have one team who hasn’t won in over a century and another who hasn’t won in almost seven decades. This was set up to be one of the most exciting face-offs ever; a win would be a historic feat for either team.
2. History Made In Nearly Every Game
In Game 1, center fielder Dexter Fowler became the first African American Cub to play in a World Series. Cleveland pitcher Corey Kluber became the first to ever strike out eight batters in the first three innings of a World Series game.
Game 3 was definitely a pitcher’s game. Cleveland won 1-0 and became the first team to ever play five shutout games in a single post-season.
Jason Kipnis of the Indians hit a three-run homerun in Game 4. This hadn’t been done in a World Series since Babe Ruth did it in 1932.
Game 6: Cub Addison Russell became the only shortstop in Major League history to hit a World Series Grand Slam. His six RBIs in this game were the most ever hit by a single player whose team was facing World Series elimination. And, those six RBIs were the most ever hit in a postseason game by someone under 23 years of age.
In Game 7, Russell continued to make history by hitting 3 more RBIs. This puts him second only to Mickey Mantle for the title of most hits by a player younger than 23 years of age. Cub Javier Baez became one of the youngest players to hit a home run in Game 7 of the World Series—second only to Mantle. Cubs’ catcher David Ross became the oldest player to hit a home run in World Series history, at the ripe old age of 39.
3. Cubs Fans’ Unparalleled Loyalty
Despite all of the odds, the Cubs were victorious, and their fans were with them all the way. It didn’t matter that they had to wait over a century. It didn’t matter that many considered a Cubs’ win laughable. It didn’t matter that they had to contend with the Billy Goat Curse. The fans were always with them. That loyalty was an inspiration to the young team. It was the heart of their fans that pushed them to win Game 7 of the World Series in extra innings; making history every step of the way.