With as much complaining and asinine thinking I see from Cubs fans, it’s nothing short of a miracle they ranked as the second-most buzzworthy MLB fanbase.
If you ask your run-of-the-mill Chicago Cubs fan online if Kris Bryant is worth an eight-year, $225 contract extension (or somewhere in that neighborhood), you’ll likely get some line about how he’s not a clutch player, is always hurt and is just flat overrated.
Or better yet, in wake of Stephen Strasburg signing a record seven-year deal with the Washington Nationals, I’ve seen people say the Cubs’ 2015 signing of Jon Lester was an overpay – despite the fact that without him, the team doesn’t win a World Series championship.
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But despite all this, the 2019 FanSided 250, which “ranks the most buzzworthy, hottest fandoms of the year using a methodology that includes a fan vote, search score and social following” -named Cubs supporters as the second-most buzzworthy fandom in all of Major League Baseball, trailing only the New York Yankees.
This year, unlike in years past, the rankings aren’t based on the ‘best’ fanbases in the world. Three years ago, though, FanSided 250 named Chicago faithful as the top of the mountain when it comes to supporters and fans – outpacing other global franchises such as Harry Potter, Ohio State University and The Walking Dead.
In the big picture, though, the Cubs finished 40th on the comprehensive list that was topped by the likes of the following:
- Los Angeles Lakers
- Star Wars
- Patrick Mahomes
Upon reading that top five, I think I can put my mind in the lane that gets the Cubs to the top 40. But not in a good way. I just have to get past the FanSided 250 focusing on buzzworthiness rather than best. Because let’s be clear – since winning that long-coveted World Series title back in 2016, Cubs fans have done more than enough to show they’re unworthy of the #1 spot on such a list.
Really, what this seems to come down to is passion – and one thing’s for sure: the men, women and children who view Wrigley Field as a home away from home and the boys wearing blue pinstripes at 1:20 p.m. on Friday afternoons as extended family have plenty of that.
We’re seeing that play out this week at the Winter Meetings, where rumors continue to swirl around the team, Kris Bryant and Willson Contreras. We saw it at the end of the season where people were calling for the head of future Hall of Fame manager Joe Maddon.
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A true fandom runs deep. And, despite all our misgivings and shortcomings, North Side fans cheer hard, feel every loss and cherish every win more than most. That, I think we can all agree on.