It’s been more than 10 years since the infamous Steve Bartman incident at Wrigley Field during the 2003 NLCS, and it looks like Cubs fans are ready to forgive the man who became the scapegoat for a heartbreaking collapse. Some of them, at least.
With the Cubs approaching their first postseason appearance since 2008, a fan has orchestrated a GoFundMe page to send Bartman to the team’s Wild Card game against the Pirates, which will most likely be played at PNC Park in Pittsburgh. The donation page — set up by Keque Escobedo, a self-proclaimed lifelong Cubs fan — promises to provide Bartman with tickets to the playoff game, hotel, airfare, and some spending money if they reach their crowdfunding goal of $5,000.
Lifelong Cubs fan wants to make amends for 2003, lets make it happen. First we need to find him to get him to the big game. If anyone knows where he is at, tell him we are looking for him. The money would pay for his expenses including his ticket, hotel room, flights and a little spending money.
If he cannot be found by time of the big game all the proceeds raised will be donated to the Alzheimer’s Association.
That’s right, a Cubs fan — not Chicago opponent’s fan — wants to send Steve Bartman to a crucial playoff game with World Series hopes on the line. And it’s a pretty sweet package, even for a guy who has had to endure the fiery wrath of bitter Chicago fans for the past 12 years.
Even if Escobedo reaches his monetary goal, it seems highly unlikely that Bartman would accept the offer. Little has been seen or heard from the man, who basically went into hiding after the incident a dozen years ago. He has turned down five and six-figure paychecks to sign autographs and appear in commercials, as well as declined participation in ESPN’s 2011 30 for 30 documentary on the foul ball incident and its aftermath.
Bartman still appears reluctant to embrace any sort of fame, which is a shame, considering he received an unfair amount of criticism and hate for far too long. Let’s be honest, it was definitely a boneheaded move to interfere with the foul ball, but the Cubs also still had a chance to overcome that mistake, and they totally collapsed in typical Cubs fashion. Not to mention the guy directly next to Bartman was also going for the ball and probably would have interfered if Steve hadn’t gotten to it first. Can you imagine how different Bartman’s life would have been?
Regardless, it’s encouraging that Chicago fans are finally willing to put the incident to rest and welcome Bartman back into the fold.
Well, not all of them.