It’s August and Wrigley is buzzing.
The Cardinals are in town.
The Cubs have won nine straight games. It’s the eleventh inning, the bases are loaded the lights are as bright as ever from atop the grandstands, and the a pitch coming across the left side of the plate to Anthony Rizzo looks like a strike, probably was a strike, is a called a walk and the Cubs win Thursday night 4-3 over the rival St. Louis Club.
The Cubs have now won 10 straight games and are 13 solid games ahead of the Cardinals in the N.L. central. Although the magic number sits at 36 games, it appears as solid as a guess as ever that the Cubs will be playoff bound and no one expects anything less than the first World Series game at Wrigley field since 1945.
Even Joe Maddon, the Cubs skipper, is surprised his team is so out in front in the division race.
“Yeah, I am surprised that there is that kind of a gap,” Joe Maddon said via the Chicago Sun-Times.
“But I’m not taking anything for granted.”
As of Friday the Cardinals are a half game on the outside-looking-in behind the Marlins for the second Wild Card spot in the National League. But for those who feel like the Cubs will have a Warriors type romp through the playoffs into the World Series, Thursday night’s game should be enough to show that a game with intensity may not necessarily amplify talent, but purely who has the most grit. The Cubbies have grit and lots of it.