Playoff baseball is finally here, starting with the Astros beating the Yankees 3-0 in Tuesday night’s first Wild Card match-up, with the second one between the Cubs and Pirates on Wednesday. No other American sport has a longer season followed by a shorter postseason, which means that no other American sport has the same level of variance in their postseason results (football could make an argument for this). Luck plays an abnormally large factor in playoff baseball, and when so much is out of your control, it’s understandable to get a little superstitious.
Perhaps no fanbase in baseball is more susceptible to the perceived whims of fate than Chicago Cubs supporters. A championship drought more than a century long will make people do crazy things, like making a curse out of an innocuous goat incident. But do the tea leaf readers see better times in the near future?
What does it all mean? Does this insanely improbable confluence of circumstance signify a greater destiny for the North Siders? Is it merely the most coincidental of coincidences, appearing purely to torture crazed fanatics into seeing what isn’t there? Are those your lottery numbers? The questions are endless, but the Cubs are in one of those one-game playoffs in Pittsburgh. In one game, anything can happen, which means anything can have meaning. Who’s to say this doesn’t?
(It doesn’t. If the Cubs win, it will probably be because they have Jake Arrieta, seen above getting drenched in Coors Light, who has been the best pitcher in baseball over the past three months. But hey, believe what you want.)