MLB – THE 2016 WORLD SERIES COULD BE THE MOST WATCHED IN HISTORY

This past Saturday night, I attended a birthday bash for a very dear family member at her home in New York.

Of course, that was also the same evening the Cubs were taking on the Dodgers in Chicago for the 6th game of the NLCS.

But, out of respect for my cousin, I knew the television had to stay off.

As you can imagine, I was in turmoil knowing the Cubs could win the NL Pennant and I was going to miss it.

So, like any other lunatic baseball fan, I snuck looks at my cell phone and Twitter for updates when no one was looking.

The first time I peeked was the 3rd inning.  I whispered to my husband, “The Cubs are up 3-0 in the 3rd”.

A party-goer next to me perked up and leaned in with a low voice, “The Cubs? What’s the score again?”

I reiterated, “Cubs are 3-0 in the 3rd.”

Another head popped up from across the room. “What’s the score?”  

The guy standing next to me gave him the briefing.  He ushered the news to someone else over in his area and came back with a thumbs-up.

We all nodded to one another as if in some secret society.

A couple innings later, I was back at my cell phone.  My husband looked at me and waited for the next bulletin, along with the interested others.

I said a little louder now feeling more brazen from my second cocktail, “Cubs are up 5-0 in the 5th.”

That resulted in light chatter and someone saying, “They’re going to do it!”

Later, in the 9th inning, I announced the official news: “The Cubs are going to the World Series”.

A light clap came from somewhere and the broadcast took flight around the party.

People who don’t normally watch baseball during the regular season told me they were going to tune in.

New Yorkers who normally root for the Yankees and Mets were genuinely thrilled for the Cubs and also said they would check out the Series.

I also read that a whopping 9.7 million viewers tuned into Fox Sports 1 on Saturday night and some predict the 2016 World Series will be on par with the very high ratings of 2004 when the Red Sox got their first ring since 1918.

This overwhelming interest reveals that the country is ready to watch history take place, regardless of who wins.

Of course, the Cubs haven’t won the World Series in 108 years (1908) and the Indians have the second longest drought with 68 years (1948).

What a great story for Major League Baseball.

Another aspect of this World Series that makes it intriguing and which should hoist up the ratings, is the fact that Cleveland is even participating.

The Indians came out of nowhere and beat the two best hitting teams in the AL with a depleted starting pitching staff and a bunch of unknown players.

I still can’t figure out why they’ve suddenly ascended (except for the brilliance of Andrew Miller).  I thought they would lose the ALDS and had little chance to win the ALCS.

But, here we are.

As for who I think is going to win the World Series, I just have no beat on this.

I think the Cubs are the better team on paper.  They do everything well and have the best starting pitching staff from top to bottom.

Then again, the Cleveland Indians have surprised me at every turn, because I think they are largely succeeding on chemistry and confidence and some brilliance thrown in.

Either way, this should be one heck of a World Series and a lot of people will be watching.

 

 

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