If there’s one sentiment most Chicago Cubs fans can agree upon in the aftermath of Black (and not so Blue) Friday, it’s that Javier Baez, Anthony RIzzo and Kris Bryant are guys we’ll cheer for regardless of the color of their pinstripes or what number they’re wearing.
And now, these guys will have a lot more people cheering for them when you add the fans in their new cities, especially if they continue scorching hot starts. Heck, if things continue like this, the Cubs will never have a chance to re-sign any of them in the offseason (I know, next to no chance anyhow).
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Rizzo got a jump on playing for his new team, as he arrived in Miami ready for the Yankees’ Friday night game against the Marlins. All he did was get on base three out of four times, including hitting a bomb in his Yankee debut. What did he do for an encore Saturday night: just get on base all five times he came to the plate, adding another home run for good measure. Eight out of nine times on base is decent, right?
Oh, and to twist the knife a little deeper, Rizzo is leading off for New York on Sunday. The Greatest Leadoff Hitter of All-Time has returned.
It’s OK to be excited for your favorite former Chicago Cubs in their new digs
Our favorite magician arrived in Flushing for the Mets’ game on Saturday night and it didn’t take long for Mets fans to realize why Baez is referred to as “El Mago,” as the former Chicago shortstop made a ball disappear into the stands for a huge two-run home run that pulled the Mets within one in a game they’d eventually go on to walk-off.
Three games for the Cubs in their new New York raiment, three wins. San Francisco is hoping they’ll be just as lucky on Sunday when Bryant makes his probable debut in the city by the bay.
It’s weird seeing these guys in other uniforms, but there’s also this legitimate joy for each one as they embark on their life after Chicago. It’s not like I wanted to see any of them go, but as Kansas once famously uttered, “nothing lasts forever but the earth and sky.” I don’t want to say that Friday was fated to happen, but that carnage had been writing on the wall for a long time for those who wanted to check it out with a blacklight.
Heck, the moves didn’t just stop at 2021 Cubs as former North Side boppers Jorge Soler and Kyle Schwarber were dealt at the deadline as well, giving us two more guys to root for in their new respective towns and uniforms. Sorry, Jon, but I’m not gonna root for you in Boringtown, even if Lester is throwing against some other team besides the Cubs… some compromises you just don’t make and rooting for the Cards is one.
Bottom line is that there are a lot of former Cubs now out there with new teams having an impact on real life pennant races and even though the team isn’t involved in one this year, those former Chicago greats will have lots of “wind” behind them in their new digs – Windy City love and support.