Chicago Cubs: Top 5 moments of the Golden Era – #2: Cubs Win the Pennant
After the Cubs returned to the NLCS for a second straight year, armed with more experience, they were poised to not let history repeat itself after being swept in the 2015 NLCS by the New York Mets. It was a red hot season for the Cubs as they finished the year with a 103-59 record, the first time the club recorded at least 100 wins since 1935.
After blowing past the San Francisco Giants in the NLDS, the Cubs went on to face a 91-win Dodgers team that was also very much on the rise, on the brink of their first of four NLCS appearances in a five-year stretch. The Cubs took Game 1 in Wrigley Field with Jon Lester twirling a gem featuring six innings of one-run ball.
Of course, game one wasn’t remembered for the pitching. After a gut-wrenching eighth-inning, game-tying single from Adrian Gonzalez, unlikely hero Miguel Montero stepped to plate in the bottom of the inning with the bases loaded. In one of the most memorable moments in Cubs history, Montero uncorked a monster grand slam that recorded one of the loudest celebratory crowd reactions in Wrigley Field history, giving Chicago an 8-4 lead in the process.
Before anyone could even stop celebrating, Dexter Fowler followed up with a solo shot of his own and the Cubs slammed the door in the ninth inning to take a 1-0 series lead.
With Los Angeles taking the next two and the series lead in the process, that old familiar feeling of “here we go again” came creeping back up. However, these Cubs would not be denied. They secured wins in Games 4 and 5, swinging the series back in Chicago’s favor, 3-2.
Chicago tattooed Dodgers ace Clayton Kershaw in Game 6 at Wrigley, turning a double play to close it out in the ninth and clinch its first pennant since 1945. And, just like that, the Cubs were headed to the World Series to take on the Cleveland Indians.