Two very different days in Chicago

Yesterday was another one of a string of glorious days we’ve had in Chicago. Even though the calendar reads October, the sunshine and the warm weather made it feel like June. But without any baseball, of course. A baseball-free October seems to be the default position for my team and that other one that plays across town.

But yesterday was different because word of the Theo Epstein signing came out. It felt like a momentous thing, like the day the Bulls traded for Dennis Rodman all those many years ago. Epstein is a front office suit, and not a player, so the comparison isn’t quite the same. But there was a palpable sense that good things were going to happen, and sure enough, they did. It felt just like that yesterday, but we’ll have to wait and see what comes of it.

My younger daughter goes to school fairly close to Wrigley Field, and I had a few minutes to kill before picking her up yesterday, so I drove past the ballpark. There were TV cameras set up along Clark Street, doubtlessly there to report on the Epstein signing. I saw the new Ron Santo statue, which I had hadn’t seen in the daylight before. His statue and Billy Williams’ form a sort of entryway near the gate at Addison and Sheffield. I’ll get used to it, I suppose.

I wasn’t able to put my car anywhere for fear of a parking ticket, but I wanted to take a peek through the knothole in the outfield fence. It looked like the ivy wasn’t turning colors yet, which was just as well, because I’m sure that would only bring back memories of 2003. My next post will demonstrate how I’m still working my way through that one.

I circled the park a couple of times, and then went back to pick up my daughter at her school. I liked the sunshine and the warmth, and told myself that postseason baseball is something I could adjust to, if only the opportunity would come around on a regular basis. But that’s Theo’s concern now.

As sunny as yesterday was, today was just as rainy. It felt as if the glow of the big signing had worn off already, and it was now time to get to work with building the team up. The reality is a bit different, though, since it’s not an official deal yet. But the Rubicon has now been crossed, and Theo Epstein is calling the shots for the Cubs.

I’m sure there will be many updates on this as the winter progresses. Stay tuned.

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