Do I need to be a Cubs fan to understand this?
The Cubs today announced they have given Steve Bartman a World Series ring. Bartman as you know was a goat for the team’s 2003 World Series dreams being dashed with his attempt to catch a foul ball. It’s a shame what happened to him in the years since.
Here is the release from the team:
“On behalf of the entire Chicago Cubs organization, we are honored to present a 2016 World Series Championship Ring to Mr. Steve Bartman. We hope this provides closure on an unfortunate chapter of the story that has perpetuated throughout our quest to win a long-awaited World Series. While no gesture can fully lift the public burden he has endured for more than a decade, we felt it was important Steve knows he has been and continues to be fully embraced by this organization. After all he has sacrificed, we are proud to recognize Steve Bartman with this gift today.”
It’s a nice gesture.
As an outsider with no ties to the Cubs, I saw this as just a fan making a mistake. It’s not like that one mistake cost the Cubs the World Series. It was Game 6 of the NLCS. There were a handful of other things that the Cubs could have done to win that game. They could have even won Game 7.
This was on the Cubs the entire time. But to do this sends a mixed message to me. So was Bartman really at fault for anything? No. And if anyone believes that narrative is mistaken. I can tell that the Cubs are trying to save face and show Bartman that they forgive him. Forgive him for what though?
Now this is something that shows good will and helps the process of healing for Bartman. But to give him a World Series ring for something that happened back in 2003? He isn’t part of the team, a major leader of the city or a major contributor and he gets a ring?
This may make me sound like a mean person but the fact that Bartman says he is “moved and sincerely grateful” for this makes me happy. Although he still wants to remain private away from the public shows that the damage the fans and media have done to him is irreparable.
So is giving him a World Series ring something that should be done? I disagree but then again I am not a Cubs fan so I don’t think I get it and I probably never will. But if this helps Bartman heal, then I suppose it’s a good thing.