Last night, I watched the first game of many in the race for this year’s World Series. Not only are the Chicago Cubs in contention, but the team has a fighting chance to win its first World Series in over one hundred years.
When I was a young girl and living with a mother who adored baseball, I was regularly expected to listen to the Giants or the Cardinals depending on where we lived at the time. Mother’s all-time favorite team was the Giants when they were located in New York. When they moved to the West Coast, she became a Cardinals fan. I still recall listening to the play-by-play on her tiny radio in our equally tiny apartment. We lived in St. Louis, MO, then and the heat index was formidable in September. But we ignored it for baseball.
There were only two leagues, and the winner of each league played the winner of the other in the World Series. Whoever won four of the seven post-season games won the whole tamale.
Today there are still two leagues, but they are divided into divisions that are still sub-divided into wild cards when the World Series is on the line. All this means that there is a run-up similar to the football frenzy leading to the Super Bowl where certain teams qualify in post-regular season play.
Don’t misunderstand. I’m a Cub fan and want the team to reach the World Series as much as anyone. At the same time, I am disgruntled that the baseball playoffs are just starting and probably won’t end until next month. I suspect the teams’ owners like an extended season and an even more extended play-off; and one reason is the money involved. Still, I wonder if it’s really good for the game.