View From The Bleachers

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December 2015



My Top 5 Cubs Moments of 2015

Written by , Posted in General

As we approach the new year, we are inundated with (mostly lame) “Best of” lists. Well, friends, I’m here to bring you yet another one of those egregious lists.

Disclaimer: this is my list. These may not actually be the top, most important, best, or your favorite moments from the season, but I’ve been given this space for now, so you’ll just have to put up with my take for a moment–not sorry. Also, I’m only going to include moments from the regular season, since the postseason was amazingly glorious all by itself (except, er, for that ending). Finally, I’m not going to include anything from the offseason, so you won’t see the Joe Maddon or Jon Lester signings. So, in the immortal words of Casey Kasem, let’s start the countdown.

5. The Schwarber Game

This is the moment when we went, “oh yeah, we have that guy, too.” On July 21, just over a year after being selected with the 4th overall pick in the draft (a pick that was roundly criticized by many, include, ahem, *cough* a few commenters on this blog), in Cincinnati, in front of scores of friends and family (he grew up nearby as a Reds fan–Votto was his hero), Schwarber blasted a mammoth (come on, dude doesn’t hit any other kind) homer to tie the game in the ninth, and then another to win it in the 13th. What a night that must have been for him. He’s going to be our Jim Thome for years to come (and no, he won’t catch, at least not primarily).

4. Bryant’s Debut

No, he didn’t get a hit. Yes, he struck out 10,000 times and looked really bad, but remember, this is my list. This moment makes the cut because I was at Wrigley to witness this game, and I can tell you, it was the most electric regular-season-in-negative-million-degrees-meaningless-game I’ve ever attended. The entire crowd stood for every one of his at-bats and lived and died with every pitch. After each inevitable strikeout, the crowd moaned as if we just lost Game 7. After such an fantastically historic rookie season, it’s easy to forget just how long it took Bryant to hit his first homer (I believe it was around 700 at-bats), but the kid makes adjustments and looks like a keeper to me.

3. Bryant’s Walk-Off (well, one of them)

July 27: The Cubs had lost a zillion games in a row and everyone was depressed. We had given up a big lead to the lowly Rockies. Bryant saved the day with a rocket into the dark Lakeview night. Everyone cheered. It was awesome.

2. Sweeping the Giants

I have to admit, after we were swept by the Phillies (the Phillies), I thought that our youth and good luck from the first half (we won so many one-run games, the outcome of which can be pretty random) had finally caught up with us. You can only dodge the coin-flip and the regress-to-the-mean dragon for so long. This four-game sweep of the defending champs in early August bounced us over the Giants for the second wild card spot and announced to all that this team was for real.

1. Arrieta’s No-Hitter

I watched this on TV, but I stood and shouted and leapt with every pitch. I celebrated after the game as though I was in Wrigleyville. A signature moment for a pitcher, a team, a fan. Thanks Jake.

Honorable mention:

All of Addison Russell‘s defensive plays; Rizzo’s brilliant season being almost overlooked; magicians in the clubhouse and on the field; Bryant knocking the videoboard onto Waveland, killing thousands; Lester actually being really good–stop whining; Joe Maddon giving players reading assignments; the inspired benching then re-starting of Castro.

Thoughts? Submit your list in the comments.

I hope everyone is enjoying the holidays. Happy New Year. Never let the pressure exceed the pleasure.

  • Doug S.

    Some highlights for me in no order including playoffs.
    -The Schwarber scoreboard HR (somebody suggested we rename it the Schwarboard)
    -Laying up 2 TDs and a FG in Cleveland
    -Beating the cardinals in the NLDS
    -Jake’s no hitter
    -Having a fearsome top/middle of the order at the plate

  • Doc Raker

    The Schwarber game was pretty special but beating the Cardinals in the playoffs, priceless.

    The game Len didn’t show up and Chuckles the Clown filled in for him was pretty special also.

  • Bryan

    I admit I was confused and thought the Cubs dropped the ball by drafting Schwarber.

    • Dork

      No one projected him to be that good that quick so don’t feel bad about it

  • cap’n realist

    The Schwarboard game…sending the Cardinals home, and their fans into the depths of depression has to be at the top of my list…yours is good, though.

  • Sean Powell

    Beating the Cards in the postseason is the unquestioned highlight of the year, but I didn’t include the postseason in my list for that very reason.

  • Eddie Von White

    My Top Six Cub moments (not necessarily in order)
    – Signing Joe Maddon.
    – Winning 97 games.
    – Eliminating the dirty birds.
    – Imagining what is going on in Jon Lester’s brain when he looks to first base from the stretch.
    – Getting a Jake Arrieta Lego for my birthday.
    – Being at the top of the Lizzie Board for the year – Oh Yeah.

  • Seymour Butts

    1 CED.
    2 PED, with a Jake shut out.
    3. Dress like Marla Collins night… that may not have really happened. Could have been a daydream.
    4. They game they all scored like Cindy Sandburg ( vs. Cleveland).

  • -Rizzo’s tarp play
    -Arietta’s No-No
    -Schwarb eating shit in the bullpen (pick one)
    -Wild Card game


    Highlights for me (in no order):
    Arrieta’s no-hitter
    Winning the wild-card game
    The Schwarber game
    4 rookies all having success
    Bryant hitting the scoreboard and Len telling us it’ll be scored a hit

  • Bartz

    Only went to two games this year. Saw Bryant’s first homer in Milwaukee and his scoreboard shot at Wrigley on my birthday. Good stuff.

    Arrieta’s no-hitter was awesome, but the announcers were Alfonseca-awful.

    • CBPtOSU

      What do you expect, it’s ESPN

      • Bartz

        Terrible. I actually missed Schilling that night.

      • CBPtOSU

        He deserved his suspension. He should be fired from his job

    • Doc Raker

      Which is a step above Len Kasper awful.

      • Doc Raker

        Sorry to be redundant.

      • Eddie Von White

        I don’t think you are.

  • Dork

    The millers
    Attended a game at miller park that the cubs were down and rizzo hit a no doubter line drive into the right field bleachers , cubs never looked back.

    Attended a game at Wrigley against the Braves and Shelby miller, the cubs got down about 6 runs even aj perzinski hit a home run, then the cubs came roaring back to win even Edwin Jackson made an appearance for the Braves and the cubs rocked him. Spent the evening at murphy’s got lost taking the train home, great night!

  • Dork

    Low point of the year was a Johnny peralta home run.

    • CBPtOSU

      Because it was steroids fueled?

    • Doug S.

      I believe he spells it Jhonnie or somehting

  • I saw and heard Bryant blast his 9th ST homer against the A’s. The next day I witnessed a Rizzo bomb to straightaway center at Sloan Park! The game I actually attended at Wrigley was not a good one for the Cubs. Sale kicked ass, but the bleachers ROCKED!!! Capped my summer off with a trip to GABP to see the Reds and Cubbies battle it out. We lost that one, too, but our seats were close to 3B. : ))))))) It was a great year for me!! Going back to the Confines as soon as I can. >>>>>>

  • Sherm

    In no particular order, and eliminating all the redundancy from other posts:

    1. Rizzo’s “foot-deke” slide into third
    2. Lester sorta-kinda picking someone off of first base.
    3. Castro’s back to back walk offs
    4. Russell’s play up the middle to beat the Cardinals
    E. Jake Arrieta’s beard
    6. Soler’s throw home in game 4 of the NLDS

    • Doc Raker

      I miss Starlin, those walk offs where great as was Soler’s throw home.
      I miss Harry and Stoner also, Fire Len Kasper.

      • Sherm

        What I’ll miss about Castro is simply the child-like enjoyment he seemed to get from the game of baseball. I think that watching him brought back memories of what it was like for each of us at one time. Other players, to me, treat it like their job, which it is, I know, but…it’s still a game.

        I could always feel his enthusiasm – his elation at getting it done, his “aw, man” when he didn’t, and watching every play from the dugout like he was a little kid allowed to stand in his big brother’s dugout during a high school game…I don’t think I ever saw him sitting down.

        So, sure, Zobrist is a good player with excellent versatility and OBP skills, and a left-handed bat. I’m sure it was a great baseball move on paper, and I’m glad they’re improving an already good team. Etc. Blah blah. And all that shit. And I don’t care about the statistics – please keep that stuff away from me…you can’t statistically tell me who I can like and not like.

        Happy New Year!

  • Doug S.

    Surprised nobody posted “Schlitter being sent to Iowa” in their top 5.

    • Sherm

      I’m sure Iowa was thrilled.

      Iowa is like the Olympics – relevant every four years and quickly forgotten.