Patience is the key to happiness. Especially with the Chicago Cubs and their fan base. They did wait 108 years to win their most recent world series title.
That same patience is going to be key for the Cubs fan base as we wait for the Ricketts to fix this franchise again. There’s a lot to be said about the Ricketts family and their tenor as owners of the Chicago Cubs. While they have refused to spend money, thrown themselves a party for “preserving Wrigley Field” and created a Cubs television network no one in the Chicagoland area can watch, they have also done a lot to put the Cubs on the map as far as a successful franchise.
Flags Fly Forever
108 years. That’s how long it was between Cubs’ World Series titles. When the Ricketts bought the franchise in 2009, the farm system ranked in the bottom half of the league in terms of talent and needed to be built from the ground up. They hired arguably the greatest baseball mind in history when they hired Theo Epstein and Jed Hoyer to run the baseball operations department.
Epsetin, Hoyer, and the Ricketts family ended that World Series drought on a rainy day in Cleveland by putting together a roster of homegrown talent; Kris Bryant, Javier Baez, Willson Contreras, and fan-favorite Ben Zobrist. They also spent money on big-name free agents like Jon Lester, Jason Heyward, and John Lackey. The Ricketts family also approved a trade for controversial closer Aroldis Chapman who ultimately played a big part in the championship run.
The Ricketts also spent money on Jason Heyward who delivered a franchise-altering speech in game 7 of the world series. Any ownership group who is willing to spend money, as the Ricketts have shown they will do, in order to win a championship is great for baseball and for baseball organizations.
Let’s face it, Wrigley field has and will always be a wonderful place to watch a ball game. Some say it is the mecca of baseball stadiums. But all good things need updating and the Ricketts family knew they needed to upgrade Wrigley field though many of the loyal Cubs fans disagreed. The Ricketts created the Wrigley Field 1060 Project which entailed a $550 million renovation project that would span over 5 years. In the renovation project, the Ricketts wanted to upgrade the stadium including redoing the beloved bleachers, putting in a state-of-the-art locker room for the players, and the 1914 club for die-hard Cubs fans to enjoy the game.
Sure this does not equate to the product on the field but it does create an atmosphere that both fans and players will flock to experience. There is also a plan for Ricketts and Co. to get in on the sports gambling business and have a sportsbook added to the Wrigley Field Paradise which will bring in more money as time moves along.
Nothing in this world is perfect and that remains true with the Ricketts ownership with the Cubs. They have made some good choices and some bad choices.
But the Cubs are a rare franchise and their fan base won’t allow anything but success which is what the Ricketts have delivered so far. 2021 ended one of the best eras of Cubs baseball in history and you know what they say, one championship window closes, another championship window opens.
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