Though easily one of baseball’s most endearing franchises, the Chicago Cubs haven’t actually delivered a World Series Championship in over a century. But after defeating the Los Angeles Dodgers in game six of the National League Championship Series, the Cubs may have their chance. It will be the first World Series appearance for the Cubs since 1945, and they will be playing against another team in the midst of a dry spell: The Cleveland Indians, who last won the World Series in 1948. A huge reason for their success this postseason has been infielder Javier Báez, who leads the team in almost every offensive category. Jon Lester has been the Cubs’ best starting pitcher this postseason, and superstar closer Aroldis Chapman has been dominant out of the bullpen.
The Cubs have lost seven World Series titles since their back-to-back wins in 1907 and 1908. Some baseball fans like to attribute this dubious feat to what is known as the “Billy Goat Curse.” On Oct. 6, 1945, Billy Goat Tavern owner Billy Sianis was asked to leave game four of the World Series because his pet goat, Murphy, smelled so bad it was bothering other fans. As Billy left the stadium, he allegedly said, “The Cubs ain’t gonna win no more,” and a curse was born.
History of The Friendly Confines
It doesn’t matter if the Cubs win or lose – Wrigley Field is a destination for baseball fans everywhere. The field is located on the corner of Clark and Addison Street in North Side, Chicago. Built in 1914, Wrigley Field is the second-oldest Major League Baseball stadium (Boston’s Fenway Park is the oldest). The stadium began as Weeghman Park, where Chicago’s Federals and Whales played in the Federal League. The league soon folded for financial reasons, and Charles Weeghman purchased the Cubs from the Taft family in 1915 – the same year William Wrigley Jr. became a minority stockholder. At Wrigley’s request, the stadium became known as Cubs Park in 1920, and was renamed Wrigley Field in 1926.
The bleachers and scoreboard were constructed in 1937, and the original scoreboard still stands today. Lights were added to the stadium after the Tribune Company purchased the Cubs in 1981, along with a new office space, private boxes, and a restaurant in 2005.
Wrigley Field has housed some incredible historic moments in baseball, such as Babe Ruth’s famous “called shot” in the 1932 World Series. It is where Ernie Banks hit his 500th home run, and where Pete Rose tied Ty Cobb for most hits of all time (after Rose’s 4,191st career hit at Wrigley in 1985).
You may not be able to catch Ernie Banks hit a home run anymore, but you still have as good an opportunity as any to catch a current player’s home run ball at Wrigley Field. If you want to increase your odds of catching a ball, finding the right seat and section could make or break your chances. It is clear in the heat map that left field has seen the most long ball action over the life of the stadium. More specifically, if you can sit in sections 304, 305, or 306 (as close to the outfield wall as possible), the better the chances of you catching a home run ball.
Speaking of home runs, Wrigley Field saw 163 home runs in 81 games this season. At 2.01 home runs per game, Wrigley is slightly below the overall National League average of 2.01 home runs per game. Cubs third baseman Kris Bryant hit the longest home run of the year, at 461 feet. The average home run at Wrigley traveled 396.4 feet, just under the overall National League average of 402.6 feet.
As you thoroughly plan to catch that long ball, make sure you also plan out your wardrobe. Head over to Fanatics.com for all the Cubs gear a die-hard fan could ask for. Maybe the team can finally kick that “Billy Goat Curse” during the World Series – and when they do, you’ll be rocking your red, white, and blue.