The One Before I Die

The One Before I Die

With our old blog about to expire, it’s nice to know that ChicagoNow kept ours up in the interim. It is a sad time, because we had so much in the archives over there, but it’s been on life support for a while now since we haven’t been able to do much with life and responsibilities getting in the way. We couldn’t really justify the hosting costs, so thus ends an era. But hopefully, when I get into a groove again, you’ll see more stuff over here.

In the next couple weeks, I’ll go and see if I can rescue a few of the good ones and post them over here, in sort of a revised format. This is an updated version of the aggregation of Condensed Game videos from the 2016 Cubs postseason run, in which they won the World Series. I have been on record as saying that 2016 is (and for many of the Cubs fans out there, too) the “One Before I Die,” and that will keep me relatively content for the next 10 years after. Well, here we are in 2021, and that grace period is about halfway done. I suppose I thought we would have seen the Cubs snag a few more rings by now, but this is perhaps a reminder that baseball is hard, and winning the World Series is harder.

At the same time, this is a collection of happy memories, and evidence that, at one point, the players that are on their way out were really good at their craft and brought us the greatest of rewards. For that, we should always be grateful.

(I did kind of skate around the few players who we knew at the time, or later found out, were trash human beings. Although they did contribute to the overall goal, since baseball is a team sport, I’m just not going to talk about them and hope that the remaining guys never milkshake duck.)

There were something like 16 billion articles written on the Chicago Cubs’ 2016 World Series championship run, and while those are all nice, sometimes you need to watch the highlights and relive the glory.  And if you’re in a long stretch between games, or you don’t find certain sporting events interesting, etc., well…that means you have time to get through a longer highlight reel. And maybe freak out at all the people that are hanging out maskless while packed in like sardines. It was a different time!

The MLB.com Media Center has all games archived and set up as condensed games as well, showing major plays and the final pitches of every significant plate appearance.  I’m not sure when they expire, but until they do, and given that all are embeddable (YAY), this is a good place to show all 11 victories en route to the greatest moment of our sporting lives.

NLDS vs. San Francisco Giants

Game 1: Javier Báez hit his homer around 6:53 of this clip…

Game 2: Kyle Hendricks gets his run-scoring hit about 3:32, and leaves the game around the 6:50 mark after a comebacker (he ended up being OK), while former Cubs pitcher Travis Wood hits his homer at 7:54.

Game 4: Grandpa David Ross hits a homer at 2:15, and the comeback for the ages starts at 9:10.

NLCS vs. Los Angeles Dodgers

Game 1: Javy steals home at 4:25, and Miguel Montero hits the most iconic grand slam in Wrigley Field postseason history at 14:45.

Game 4: Jason Heyward throws out Adrián González at home around the 3:45 mark.

Game 5: You can watch Jon Lester field his position most amusingly around 3:07, and Anthony Rizzo drops a 100-point bunt at 10:55.  Adrian Gonzalez tried his own bunt at 11:25, but Javy was too good for that upon replay.  The Cubs would plate their winning run at 13:55.

Game 6: Well, the clincher!  Just enjoy this, especially Willson Contreras‘ bat drop after homering against Clayton Kershaw at 5:28.  Kyle Hendricks also has a sweet pickoff at 3:04.

World Series vs. Cleveland Indians (who blew a 3-1 lead)

Game 2: You can see Javy the Teletubbie get on base at the 2:00 mark, but the Cubs wouldn’t plate the winning run until Kyle Schwarber‘s single around 3:17 (worth the visual after the play haha).   Jake Arrieta would lose his no-hitter at 10:23.

Game 5: The first World Series win at Wrigley Field in over 70 years.  Ross and Rizzo have their juggly catch at 1:32.  Heyward’s catch is at 4:10.  Kris Bryant hits the tying homer at 5:15, and the Cubs plate the winning run at 8:18.

Game 6: Back to Cleveland. And on to a Game Seven. And a reminder that He Who Shall Not Be Named Lest He Name Search And Then Troll Us lost twice in the World Series to the eventual champion Cubs.

Game 7: The clincher.  Another Hendricks pickoff at 4:06.  After the rain delay, the game-winning rally starts at 24:07.  The final out and celebration starts at 28:18. I showed this video six times that Friday while teaching class as I couldn’t get the day off since half the teachers were out. There was a parade or something, but the wife and kid got to go so I was there in spirit.

The Cubs won the World Series.  People forget that.  Now here are 11 reasons not to forget anymore.

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  • Thank you for the archive for a Blackhawk follower to catch up to when memory falters. Thanks for expressions, too -- I'm going to assume I shouldn't ask about milkshake duck because something might rhyme.

  • In reply to Margaret H. Laing:

    The milkshake duck phenomenon is basically when a person who did something cool turns out to be a trash bag in real life, so that's probably good enough for you. Thank you for sharing in our memories!

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