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Tag Archive: Chicago Cubs


back-to-the-future-ii-world-series-cubs-win

As predicted by Bob Gale in his script for Back to the Future II, it was the destiny of the Chicago Cubs to be playing–in fact sweeping–last year’s World Series.  As we sat in Kauffman Stadium last year and watched the Kansas City Royals beat the New York Mets we were disappointed the Cubs weren’t there.  Science fiction never seems to get it right, but Gale–and the Cubs–were so close last year, much like the Royals were the prior year.  Science fiction rarely even comes close, as you’ll discover especially if you read many classic sci-fi novels from the early and mid-twentieth century.  Just look how far off course in date predictions forward thinkers were, like Arthur C. Clarke (we’re still waiting for much of his 2001), Philip K. Dick (the novel inspiring Blade Runner takes place in 1992), and Gene Roddenberry (Khan controlled much of Earth during the Eugenics Wars of the 1990s).

But history was made last night when the Cubs broke their 108 year gap between Series wins.  Would 1908 Cubs stars Mordecai Brown, Frank Chance, Johnny Evers, or Joe Tinker have believed it if you told them their team would be on the outs so long?  How about contemporary science fiction visionaries George Melies, Thomas Edison, Charles Urban, H.G. Wells, or Mark Twain?

1908-champion-cubs-baseball-cards

1908 baseball cards were tiny, weren’t they?

Just how long ago is 108 years anyway?  In 1908 Shackleton was heading to New Zealand, and explorers finally made it to the North Pole, Wilbur Wright was demonstrating this new flying vehicle called the airplane in Europe, and Henry Ford created his first Model T, Teddy Roosevelt declined to run for a third presidential term paving the way for the election of William Howard Taft (who would go on to become Chief Justice of the U.S. Supreme Court), Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid were killed in Bolivia, and Albert Einstein had just introduced his special theory of relativity.  1908 was a very different world and plenty of history has filled the gap, with countless millions of fans–an entire generation born, living and dying–watching the Cubs games without the big win, many from 1914 onward at the site of the baseball field that would carry chewing gum’s William Wrigley’s famous name.  It is “just a game,” yet the game itself survived plenty just as its fans survived plenty.

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chris-pratt-moneyball

It’s that time of year again.  The 2016 World Series is now in full swing with the first game a sweep by the Cleveland Indians.  How will the Chicago Cubs fare in Game 2 tonight?  If you’re not in the baseball frame of mind yet, we have five of the all-time best baseball movies you can stream right now for free or for less than four dollars on Amazon Prime’s streaming service.  Most of these can also be rented on Netflix.  And let’s face it–everyone should own our fifth movie on the list.

Have you seen them already?  Then you know these great films can be watched over and over again.

Let’s start with a classic:  Gary Cooper as Lou Gehrig in Pride of the Yankees from 1942.  The movie recounts the then-recent personal triumph and tragedy of what baseball as an American pastime has created over and over for more than a century: baseball players as American icons.  Pride of the Yankees shows the personal side of being a famous baseball player, and features real-life legends Babe Ruth, Bob Meusel, Mark Koenig, and Bill Dickey, all playing themselves on-screen.  Academy Award winners Teresa Wright and Walter Brennan co-star.  If you want to see classic baseball from a contemporary view, this is your movie.  Although the story is certainly bittersweet and a tear-jerker, it reflects baseball as more than just a game.

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The most recent movie on our list is Moneyball, from 2011, a modern classic we’ve already watched over and over.  Moneyball reveals the game as a modern business.  The conflict between playing the game as classically envisioned and the game as seen from an analytical angle is wrestled with from the real life mostly true story of the Oakland A’s general manager Billy Beane as he turned the team around in its 2002 season.
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Kauffman Stadium 14 innings Tuesday October 28 2015 World Series Game 1

As predicted by Bob Gale in his script for Back to the Future II, it was the destiny of the Chicago Cubs to be playing–in fact sweeping–this year’s World Series.  At least in the current alternate timeline we’re all living in, that just didn’t happen.  If the Cubs hadn’t lost to the New York Mets they would have played Game 1 tonight at the home field of the American League champs instead of Wrigley Field because the American League won this year’s All Star Game.  That meant Game 1 was played in Kauffman Stadium, and had the Cubs made it to the Series they would have faced off against the Royals last night in Kansas City.

In that game we got to see the second longest game in World Series history–14 innings, ultimately with the Royals taking the win, 5-4.  The bright lights at the stadium in the wee hours of this Wednesday morning seemed to actually burn into the wet night’s sky.  Fourteen innings and more than five hours of exciting gameplay.  You can’t have a better World Series game than that–well, unless you’re a Cubs fan.

Bunce World Series 2015 dugout

We did our part, yours truly and borg.com writer Elizabeth C. Bunce were bound and determined to see the Royals face off against the Cubs, because we’re sci-fi (and Royals) fans, and thanks to our friend Mike we watched Game 1 from dugout seats last night.  Watching Lorenzo Cain steal second base when you’re sitting at first base… just can’t be beat. (And, hey, that stolen base means Taco Bell must give away free A.M. Crunchwraps on November 5, 2015, because they sort of lost a marketing bet in their Steal a Base, Steal a Breakfast campaign–see here for details).

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BBTf Week logo

1985 and 1989.  Here we are at the 30th anniversary of director Bob Zemeckis’s sci-fi classic Back to the Future and only a few days from 4:29 p.m. Pacific time on Wednesday, October 21, 2015, the day Marty McFly went to the future in his DeLorean time machine in 1989’s Back to the Future II.  The principal cast–Michael J. Fox, Christopher Lloyd, Lea Thompson, and even Huey Lewis–are scheduled to meet for a reunion screening in New York to celebrate Back to the Future Day.

An interesting happening of the future year 2015 as predicted in Back to the Future II is the Chicago Cubs win the 2015 World Series.  Christopher Lloyd said last week that he will reprise his role as Doc Brown to throw out the first pitch of the third game of the World Series in Chicago if the Cubs make it that far and the powers that be make it so.

The craziest bit is the shot in the dark taken by Back to the Future II co-writer Bob Gale who came up with the idea of the Cubs winning the World Series in 2015, back when he wrote the screenplay in the 1980s, and the real possibility that the Cubbies will actually succeed this year.  Had the Cubs won Game 1 of the National League Championship Series vs. the New York Mets yesterday–and kept on a four-game winning streak–the team could have locked in the World Series appearance on NLCS Game 4–right smack dab on October 21, 2015–yep, right on Back to the Future Day.  But… they lost Game 1 Saturday.  Still–the Cubs have six more scheduled games in the series to make it happen.  Hear that Cubs players?  It is your density.  I mean destiny.

BTTF chronometer

We at borg.com are joining in with our own Back to the Future Week, including a review of the new documentary hitting theaters this week: Back in Time, and a preview of Issue #1 of IDW Publishing’s new Back to the Future comic book series, and anything else we can think of.

First up, have you pre-ordered the 30th anniversary box set of the Back to the Future trilogy?  Get it now at a pre-order discount here from Amazon.com.

I was There shirt BTTF

Let’s start off the week with a preview of a short film produced by Toyota, marketing the release on Back to the Future Day of the Mirai–Toyota’s new, futuristic, hydrogen fuel cell car.  The Toyota ad features Michael J. Fox and Christopher Lloyd, to premiere in its entirety on October 21.  Here’s a sneak preview:

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