Do you want tea with your baseball?

Major League Baseball has happened in more than a few countries beyond the obvious pair, of USA and Canada. Mexico, Puerto Rico, Japan, and Australia to name just a few. But tonight (I’m actually watching it as I talk), we can add a new one to that list, the United Kingdom, in London to be exact. No, I’m not there, even if I had a body, and brain that worked (and currently I don’t), its the opposite end of the country to me, its a sell out, and ticket prices were crazy. I did try entering a contest for seats tonight, but no shock, I didnt win! It included a hotel stay, so could have been done.

I have actually seen baseball live in 2 countries (Yes, Toronto is on my ‘done’ list), and have been to games at 10 of the 30 teams, though 1 stadium I went to (Minneapolis) has been replaced since then. When I get to add to that list, who knows? I have done the 3 senior stadiums (Boston, Chicago Cubs, LA Dodgers) which is something at least, and indeed 6 of the 7 oldest (LA Angels missing, its Anaheim, so hard to get to for a non driver, even when in LA) ones.

But did I ever imagine seeing baseball in the UK, and 2 sell outs at that, not in my dreams. But yes, its happening tonight, and again tomorrow. The fact that its those bitter rivals, the New York Yankees, and the Boston Red Sox amuses me more, especially the latter, given its Kate’s team! I dont know if its the shape of the stadium or something, but we’re only in the top of the 3rd innings (after nearly 90 minutes), and the score is currently 8-6!

OK, the video. I saw this live during the week, that crazy moment when Sesame Street hit Wrigley Field (home of Cubs, 105 years old, 2nd oldest stadium),and Cookie Monster sang ‘Take Me Out To The Ballgame’, seriously.

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108 years of hurt

Yes, it would be remiss of a baseball fan like myself, if I didnt mention events earlier this week. Yes, despite the fact that they knocked the Dodgers out in the previous round, it still has to be said, congratulations, Chicago Cubs!

Thats right, after 108 years, they’ve finally broken the jinx, and won the World Series again. There is no way to compare the team of today, with the team of 1908, even with the longevity of Wrigley Field, it wasnt their home stadium then! A humble, wooden built stadium called West Side Park hosted the Cubs in the glory years of 1907, and 1908.

The other huge difference between those World Series, and this year, all games back then were played during the day! No floodlights, and indeed the Cubs were the last team to bring in floodlights, as late as 1988! They still play more day games than most, a hint to that tradition.

The funniest thing about 1908? A few days after the Cubs beat the Detroit Tigers to win the World Series on the Wednesday, they played again on the Sunday, as part of the festivities! Also all sorts of other events were done around that game, including races, and the like. Yes, just imagine Anthony Rizzo having a foot race against Mike Napoli now, four days after the Series was over!

Ironically, the longest streak since a World Series win now passes to the team they beat, the Cleveland Indians. Yes, next season, they will have 69 years of hurt to try and solve! Fine, the Dodgers breaking that 29 year jinx would suit me better, but…

Meeting Vin Scully next May could cure a lot of personal ills, mind!

The video. Well, it wont mean much to baseball fans, but given its talking about 30 years of hurt, it seemed rather apt. Yes, baseball is coming home to Chicago’s north side, after 108 years, congrats.