This isn't the first time I've lived in Cubs territory- I spent 8 years in Chicago for goodness sake- but this is the first time (minus one tipsy purchase of a floppy Cubs hat) I'm conflicted about who to root for. Yesterday at the game I found myself unintentionally cheering for the dirty Cubs. Yep, you heard me right. Please just hear me out.
* For starters they aren't really the Cubs, they are the Iowa Cubs- referred to here as simply 'I-Cubs'. Yes, I understand they are part of the overall (evil) organization. Yes, I understand that I-Cubs generally become Cubs. But they are KIDS! I mean it- I referred to half the team as pint-sized. The other half was full sized boys or just full grown. You wouldn't root against kids, would you?
* Minor League stadiums are very intimate which means your voice carries loud and clear. If you're rooting for the other team it is BEYOND obvious. Trust me. It's not like big parks where just the people around you know you're rooting against the beloved home team, here everyone knows. And stares. With evil stares. Now, I'll have no problem rooting for the Memphis Cardinals when they are here. I'm also guessing there will be more people on our side for those games vs. yesterday when it was the Texas Ranger's AAA team. However, yesterday I found myself getting into it with the crowd. I actually had to turn to Tim a couple times and say I forget who I'm supposed to be cheering for...
* It's cheap. I mean cheaper than cheap. Not just tickets- EVERYTHING! And because of that we now have A LOT of tickets. Originally we had bought a Groupon of 10 tickets for $25- that's $2.50/ticket! We were able to upgrade our GA tickets to first row for $5 more. That made our tickets $7.50 - the SAME price as our 24 oz beer we bought! Which leads me to how we got our next group of 10 tickets...For $35 you can join the I-Cubs Beer Mug Club. Yep, I said Beer Mug Club. That buys you 5 tickets and a reusable 18 oz mug. The mug gets filled for $4 and, on Thursdays, your first beer is FREE! Don't even get me started on the cost of suites or the party deck...
* They serve beer until the end of the 9th inning. No joke. We heard last call when there were 2 outs in the 9th. I don't need to further elaborate on this.
* Seeing the kids get so excited to do all things Minor League parks offer is heartwarming- the games between innings, the t-shirts and hotdogs they shoot out of cannons (yes, I said hot dogs), the foul balls (there is actually a voiceover that says 'Give it to a kid' when an adult catches it) and getting balls from the guys in the bullpen. They all look so cute in their I-Cubs gear and it's the innocence that makes me feel bad if I root against them. Not to mention these kids will have a rude awakening if they ever get to go to Wrigley. Why kick 'em while they're down when they don't even know they are?!
* Tony LaRussa was an I-Cub! Yep, had to see it with my own eyes! I had no idea TLR was one not just once, but twice!
Maybe he'll come back to his old stomping grounds now that he's retired!
So that's my argument. What do you think? What if I solemnly swear to never purchase any I-Cubs gear? No matter how many times my mug is refilled..