Its officially a new era in baseball. The Cubs broke a 108-year World Series drought by defeating the Cleveland Indians, a team that hasnt won a World Series since 1948 and were actually leading last years World Series 3-1 before collapsing.
As soon as the Cubs won, Cleveland assumed the distinction of the MLB club with the longest World Series drought.
The sting of that loss was tempered by the optimism of the season and the fact that they finally got over the hump and made it back to the Autumn Classic for the fourth time since their last triumph. Plus Michael Brantley was returning from injury and Tito Francona had one more season to get his team tweaked to perfection.
Fan enthusiasm has been off the charts and the Indians have become the biggest story in baseball. Just ask LeBron James.
FRANCHISE RECORD 15 STRAIGHT WINS FOR THE CLEVELAND INDIANS https://t.co/ZkRNCH4z6B
National media has started infiltrating the press boxes and attendance is booming. Cleveland is a club that ranks 24th out of 30 MLB teams in average daily attendance, but they had almost 30,000 people at the ballpark for a Wednesday day game to watch the Indians make history by winning its American League-record 21st straight game.
“W’ere setting the standard each time we go out there,” pitcher Mike Clevinger told reporters after the game.
While the Dodgers stole the headlines early in the season, ripping off wins at an historic pace before their recent swoon, Cleveland has changed the narrative this season and their success has thrust them to the top of the MLB power rankings. They now have a chance to break the MLB record of 26 straight wins, set by John McGraw’s 1916 Giants.
The law of averages say Cleveland is prime to win it all. They came so close last season but fell short, which happens to championship teams on the way up the totem pole. They faced tremendous adversity and survived the effects of losing a see-saw battle which they could have easily won.
Now, Cleveland is on the verge of clinching its second straight AL Central crown and ninth of the wild-card era. Everything is looking gravy as the Indians arent just finishing strong, they are demolishing teams at a rate that we have never seen in our lifetime.
Check out the highlights of the Cleveland Indians AL record setting 21 game winning streak! Check out http://MLB.com/video for more! About MLB.com: Former Commissioner Allan H. (Bud) Selig announced on January 19, 2000, that the 30 Major League Club owners voted unanimously to centralize all of Baseball’s Internet operations into an independent technology company.
Francona has been here before. He was the head coach who masterminded the end of the Boston Red Sox 86-year World Series drought. When he first arrived in Cleveland, TSL spoke of his reputation as a curse breaker.
The seasoned coach doesnt want his players to get too confident or hit a rough streak as the playoffs start, so hes downplaying the accomplishment.
“The winning streak is enjoyable, and I think it’s gotten people’s attention,” Francona said. “And I think that’s given me a chance to brag on our guys a little bit, which I love. Other than that, we’ll go play tomorrow.”
Baseball is a sport thats loyal to no one. It has you riding high one day and humiliated the next.
On July 20, just 11 days before the non-waiver trade deadline, Cleveland was 48-45 and hardly looking like a World Series caliber squad. They led the Twins by a half-game in the division, and the Royals were just two back.
Since then, the Indians have gone 41-11 and are now playing with the championship or bust philosophy.
After all, MLB history says theyre next up.