Saturday, October 17, 2015
Cubs face Mets on Saturday in the NLCS
Last night I found out the Cubs are facing the NY Mets in their first National League Championship Series since 2003. When the Cubs edged the Pittsburgh Pirates last week to move on the NLDS it was a big deal because this was another notch in winning a playoff series.
The deal is the Cubs haven't had much success in the playoffs although starting in 1984 (with other playoff appearances in 1989, 1998, 2003, 2007, 2008 and of course 2015) the Cubs have been going to the postseason on rare occasions. Before 1984 - when they couldn't get past San Diego Padres in the NLCS - the Cubbies last postseason appearance was in the 1945 world series.
2003 was exciting to see the Cubs advance in their first postseason series since the playoff format began in 1969. At first two division winners in each league played in their respective league's championship series and then in 1995 a wild card team play against division winners in a best 3 out of 5 to play in their respective league's championship series. Now the current format is a one-game wild card playoff with the winner advancing to their respective league's division series and then their respective league's championship series.
And just think prior to 1969 the only way to advance to the world series was to win the pennant in each league. The Cubs had done that as recently as 1945 which was as stated the last time they appeared in a world series.
In spite of this talk of "Doc Brown" wanting to throw the first pitch in a possible Cubs world series or even bringing back former Cubs legend Sammy Sosa who also wants to throw a first pitch for now I'll just settle for a Cubs NL pennant. 2003 was a great season for the Cubs and they have always been a successful team in spite of what happened in Wrigleyville during the NLCS they will always have a place in my memories. But if they're successful in the 2015 NLCS here's hoping 2003 will just be a not more than a memory and we can also put the last 70 years to rest.