George Hale’s Perspective: Sox vs. Cubs

Updated 4 years ago

IT’S A SPORTING MATCH-UP NINETY-THREE YEARS IN THE MAKING.WE’RE TALKING RED SOX-CUBS…WHAT TOOK THEM SO LONG, GEORGE?OUR COUNTRY COUSINS ARE COMING TO FENWAY PARK FOR THE WEEKEND.THE CUBS ARE COMING TO PLAY THE RED SOX FOR THE FIRST TIME SINCE SEPTEMBER 11, 1918.YES, I SAID 1918.THE WORLD WAS AT WAR AND BABE RUTH WAS PLAYING FOR BOSTON.I THINK HE CALLED THE CUBS “BUMS.”IT WAS THE SIXTH AND FINAL GAME OF THE WORLD SERIES AND THE SOX WON.IF YOU STRUGGLE TO GET TICKETS TO FENWAY THESE DAYS IT’S HARD TO IMAGINE THAT ONLY 15-THOUSAND FANS WERE THEREON THAT EARLY SEPTEMBER DAY.OUR HOMETOWN BOYS WOULD NOT WIN ANOTHER WORLD SERIES FOR 86 YEARS.RUTH WOULD LEAVE AND THE ‘CURSE’ WOULD BEGIN AND NOT END UNTIL 2004.BUT CONSIDER THE POOR CUBBIES.IT HAS BEEN 103 YEARS OF DROUGHT.THEIR CURSE HAS BEEN A BILLY GOAT AND A FAN NAMED STEVE BARTMAN.BUT BOSTON AND CHICAGO REMAIN INTERTWINED.SOME OF OUR HEROS HAVE PLAYED IN THE WINDY CITY TOO.BOBBY ORR ONCE PLAYED HOCKEY THERE. DOUG FLUTIE HAD TIME WITH THE BEARS, CARLTON FISK LEFT FOR THE WHITE SOX.PEASE REMEMBER THAT BOSTON TRADED WITH THE CUBS FOR BILL BUCKNER.ALL OF THAT IS HISTORY AND THAT’S WHAT THIS WEEKEND IS ALL ABOUT.THERE IS NO BASEBALL HISTORY BETTER THAN THAT OF THESE TWO TEAMS.EVEN THE TWO HOME BALLPARKS ARE REVERED.CHICAGO HAS LONG BEEN WILLING TO BELIEVE THAT MRS. O’LEARY’S COW STARTED THE BIG FIRE.NOW, IN A NEW BOOK, THE SUGGESTION IS MADE THAT THE CUBS REALLY THREW THE 1918 SERIES TO BOSTON.PLAYERS WERE UPSET THAT THEY WERE NOT GETTING ENOUGH MONEY FROM THE RECEIPTS SO THEY TOOK ACTION.NO ONE WILL EVER KNOW FOR SURE.BUT THE STATS FROM THE SERIES INDICATE THAT THE CUBS PITCHERS WERE TERRIFIC ALTHOUGH THERE WERE MANY STRANGE PLAYS.OF COURSE 1919 WOULD SEE THE GREAT “BLACK SOX” SCANDAL DEVELOP WITH CHICAGO’S OTHER TEAM.IT DOES MAKE YOU WONDER THOUGH HOW BASEBALL HISTORY WOULD BE DIFFERENT IF THE CUBS HAD ACTUALLY WON THAT SERIES.SO TONIGHT AFTER THESE LONG YEARS THE RED SOX WILL HOST CHICAGO IN BOSTON IN INTERLEAGUE PLAY.THIS SERIES HAS EVERYTHING A PURIST NEEDS.ON SATURDAY NIGHT JULIA RUTH STEVENS, THE LAST SURVIVING CHILD OF BABE RUTH, WILL THROW OUT THE FIRST PITCH.SHE IS 94 YEARS YOUNG.BOTH THE RED SOX AND THE CUBS WILL BE WEARING UNIFORMS THAT WILL REPLICATE THE STYLE OF 1918.IT WON’T ONLY BE ABOUT HISTORY BUT IMPORTANT BASEBALL WILL BE PLAYED.THE RED SOX, FINALLY ON TRACK, ARE ONLY A GAME AND A HALF OUT OF FIRST AND WINNERS OF SIX STRAIGHT.THE CUBS ARE FOUR GAMES BELOW .500 AND FIVE AND A HALF OUT IN THE NATIONAL LEAGUE CENTRAL.IF YOU LOVE HISTORY YOU HAVE TO LOVE THE GAMES THIS WEEKEND AT FENWAY.THIS IS GEORGE HALE WITH MY PERSPECTIVE ON SPORTS.


MENU