With W flags hanging 20 stories high and people standing even higher on the roofs of adjacent buildings, Daley Plaza was dressed in Cubs blue for this afternoon’s 2008 postseason rally.
Cubs fans are always the trademark of anything the team is involved in, and today was no exception. The crowd cheered with every strike and out while watching replays of the 1984, 1989 and 2008 division clinch games. Fans twice sang “Go, Cubs, Go,” and they danced in the crowd as emcee Jim Belushi danced and played the harmonica to “Sweet Home Chicago.”
One fan held a sign that read: “Here for those who couldn’t make it.”
That could mean a number of things to Cubs fans, just as October baseball will bring back a wide range of memories and hopes.
But while the list of speakers today read like a Hall of Fame in itself — Ron Santo, Ernie Banks, Billy Williams, Mayor Richard Daley, Gov. Rod Blagojevich, Cubs chairman Crane Kenney — the day’s most enthusiastic cheers were saved for the 2008 Cubs. Derrek Lee, also joined by Sean Marshall and Micah Hoffpauir, directly addressed the crowd:
“Cubs fans, you are the best fans in the world. Thanks for having our backs and showing your support for the last seven months. We need it for one more month, 11 more wins,” said Lee. “Let’s go, Cubs!”
Game 1 in exactly 24 hours. Are you excited yet?
(Photos by Steve Green)