Sunday, November 6, 2016

Bob Lobel: Being a Fan Again

By Bob Lobel (@boblobel)

I almost forgot what it was like to just be a fan.

No work issues, no interview issues, no controversy, no worrying about your hair being combed, or having a tie to match the shirt or whatever. That's what this World Series meant to me. 

Being a fan again with no external pressures of your home town team winning or losing, or finding a spot on the parade route for the live telecast. I wanted the Indians to win. I have Ohio roots and Ohio friends. No doubt that Chicago was a better and deeper team. Not better managed, but all the other stuff. 

And, getting out of Chicago, with the home town adoration and pressure, allowed the Cubs to be the Cubs. It’s the same principle in place for 7th games of Stanley Cups: You don’t want to play they at home because of the fan expectations. Much easier to win those big games on the road.

I know it sounds stupid, but it's a very real factor. Another huge factor was the stupid 17-minute rain delay. It allowed the Cubs to relax and reset their heads after almost blowing the big one again. So, their parade came and went, with more Millennials acting out than baby boomers. Good for them. Not good for Chicago. 

Again, be careful what you wish for, because you might just get it. 

So now Chicago, what's next? More pressure to win is inevitable. When you're no longer losers of biblical proportion, what are you? Yes, I know, world champions for 12 months. Do you get to visit Donald Trump in DC?  


In a private moment, Chicago, you will regret this. Yes, it was a really great story, but an underdog, undermanned Cleveland win would have been so much better. Tito winning in his father's ball park is a whole lot better than a kid from Brookline who was there with the Red Sox and now the Cubs. 

You absolutely have to give Theo Epstein his due, but Jed Hoyer is my guy. He is Theo's guy too. At least the best quality of Theo is that he surrounds himself with people that know more than he does. That is a rare quality. 

And I'll just mention the Zobrist thing. It's creepy that one of the key characters in the movie “Inferno” is named Zobrist. Can't make that up. He might have been the MVP of the movie for that matter. And while I'm on the subject, the actress that plays the mother in the pathetic commercial against recreational pot, is in a trailer for a zombie movie. 

Can't make that up either. Good actress, bad commercial. 

So back to fan boy. It was just very cool to sit back and watch, and put everything else aside and enjoy the series.

Especially with all those who make you ask “why can't we get players, or GMs, or managers like that”? 

Cleveland needed this more than Chicago. 

As a fan, yes, I was disappointed, but still grateful it brought out those old fan feelings that I thought were put away a long time ago.  Happily, no matter who won, they are still hanging around somewhere, and maybe can be called upon again sometime soon.

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