Cleveland: The City of Anguish

Last night’s World Series was an instant classic. Game 7, extra innings, 1-run game. It doesn’t get any better than that. It was filled with plenty of on the field and off the field drama. In the end, the Cubs won ending their 108-year world series drought. The Indians added another notch to their 68-year drought. You could feel the majority of sports fans were on the Cubs side, hoping to witness a piece of history that no living person has seen before. For Cleveland, it was us against the world and as usually happens, the world won.

Over the years, Cleveland has come close to winning many titles and even did lift their city out of the sport ruins with an NBA title back in June. Still, with basketball being a distant 3rd when talking about American sports popularity, Cleveland sports will probably still be remembered more for their losses than their wins. These heart-breaking losses always seemed to have moments, moments when Cleveland could put the championship away, but didn’t. And now, clawing back from a 5-1 deficit to tie the score at 6-6 on a 8th inning home-run off one of the world’s best pitchers – this was their moment. They had gotten back in the game, the home crowd was roaring, this was it. 20 minutes and 3 Cubs hits later, that lead was gone, and gone for good.

Most of the time the underdogs are beloved but for some reason when Cleveland is the underdog- they are still wanted to loose. The Warriors were the clear favorites during the NBA finals but most still wanted to see Lebron loose. They didn’t care about the anguish Cleveland had gone through but instead had a personal distaste with one player’s choice 6 years ago. If it was any other team in the league, the majority would be pulling for the upset but when it is Cleveland- the opposite happens. Take the World Series. Big-market team with huge payroll, most wins in the league faces a small market team with injuries decimated their roster forcing them to crawl their way through the playoffs where they were underdogs each round. Normally, everyone would be on the side of the latter team, but in this case that team is Cleveland so that is not going to happen.

One shot sequence during the telecast really told the whole story. The camera bounced around to the celebrities in the stands as is customary during big games. With Cubs hats proudly on we saw Eddie Vedder, Vince Vaughn, and Bill Murray. Cleveland had Charlie Sheen- not because he particularly likes Cleveland but because he played a Cleveland baseball player in a movie. That pretty much sums up Cleveland as the city of anguish. When you have Bill Murray vs Charlie Sheen in a Game 7, the underdog is going to find a way to lose and that is exactly what they did last night.

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