Chicago Cubs: MLB’s hazing policy won’t slow the Cubs
While Major League Baseball instituted new anti-hazing policies this season, Joe Maddon and the Chicago Cubs haven’t felt what they did qualifies as such. Either way, the Cubs will need to find a new way around the policy.
Hazing has existed on many different levels over the years, and it’s not specific to MLB or the Chicago Cubs. The stories we see that come out of universities of sororities and fraternities rarely turn as bad in baseball as they do there. But as someone that’s experienced “hazing” on each side of the coin, I can assure you what the Cubs did was far from that.
This season, MLB made dressing up players as women, princesses, or any other character that could be deemed as the opposite sex prohibited. Kris Bryant as Elsa? Nope. The next wave of rookies won’t get any of that. But that doesn’t mean that the Cubs won’t initiate them into the family and the game. It’ll just be a little more…normal?
Maddon was quick to come out and say that he doesn’t feel what they do is hazing at all. Just like he’s preached this season, it’s been about “being uncomfortable”.
"“I think hazing is different than what we do,” Maddon said. “It’s a team bonding experience. … It’s about stepping outside your comfort zone. Any costume can do that. There’s growth involved. If they can get past that thought, then what happens on the field can become less stressful in a sense.”"
And ongoing tradition
This is an initiation that has been going on in the game for years. There’s been a handful of players that have spoken out against it in the past. But there have also been some–including the Cubs’ players–that admitted they were looking forward to it.
"“To be honest, that was one of the things I was most looking forward to. It means you are part of the fraternity,” Albert Almora Jr. said. “It’s part of the baseball family. We got closer as a team because of that, but we’ll respect the league’s decision.”"
Almora’s words tell part of the story. They’ll “respect the league’s decision”. But that doesn’t mean they won’t try to work around it. There has already been some talk of the Cubs rookies wearing wrestling singlets or speedos. I’ll be honest here. Seeing the players in speedos? I think I’d rather see the Disney princesses again. Without question.
Next: One last time, Cubs will rely on Lackey
As the Cubs look to carry on a tradition without violating the new rules of the collective bargaining agreement, we can only wonder what the Cubs final solution might be. John Lackey believes the world have gotten “too soft”. And that the process can help bring a team together. I for one actually agree with that.