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Billy Goat Curse

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The "Billy Goat Curse"

Its game six of the National League Championship Series, the Cubs lead the series 3 games to 1 over the Florida Marlins; it's the 8th inning of the sixth game with the Cubs leading 3 to 0. The Florida Marlins are up with a runner on first and only 1 out. The batter, Derek Lee, hits a pop fly down the left field line one row into the stands, Moises Alou, the Cubs' left fielder, reaches for the ball but before he could grab the ball a fan reaches up and knocks it away from him. The Cubs would go on to lose game six 8 to 3, and would later go on to lose game 7, and the series. After game 6, many people, including fans and the media, believed that the actions of this one fan cost the Cubs there one chance to end the 95 year drought and the curse of the Billy goat. In my speech today I plan on giving you a brief history of the Cubs, what the Billy goat curse is, and the fans reaction to the losing, and the curse. On Oct 6, 1945, a Greek tavern owner by the name of Sam "Billy goat" Siannis, (he was nicked named the Billy goat because of his goatee), bought box seats for himself and his goat. It was the 4th game of the World Series, the Cubs having had won 2 out of 3 in Detroit. They came back to Chicago favorites to win it all. In the past, and all entire season, he was allowed to bring his goat to the games. This time, however, management said no. Siannis and his goat were escorted out of Wrigley Field. Not happy with what was going on; Siannis stopped in the middle of Wrigley field, threw both arms up in the air and yelled, "There will never be another world series played at Wrigley Field." The Cubs beat the Detroit Tigers in the 1907 and 1908 World Series. This would be the last time the Cubs would win the World Series, a 95 year drought. The Cubs would go on to have some success in the following decade, winning the pennant (their division) in 1910 and again in 1929 both times losing in the first round of the playoffs. Another pennant came their way in 1932, and this time they would go all the way to the World Series only to lose to the New York Yankees, on Babe Ruth's called shot. The Cubs would go on to win another pennant in 1935 and again in 1938. Once again in 1938, they would make it all the way to the World Series only to loose yet again. Many noticed the ominous pattern. One reporter even gave them the nickname of the loveable losers. In 1945, they would get yet another chance at the World Series, this time losing to the Detroit Tigers. This would be their last time playing in a World Series, a 58 year drought. From 1940 to 1966, the franchise had 26 losing seasons and finished last 6 times. In 1969, behind the bat of Ernie Banks, it looked like the Cubs might win it all. They were leading the league for much of the season, only to be overworked, and eventually caved in down the stretch. Once again, from 1973 through 1983, they had no winning seasons and finished last four times. Since then, they have gone on to win two more pennants in 1984 and 1989, only to lose in the first round of the playoffs both times. Last year, 2003, the Cubs went on to win yet another pennant and this time making it all the way to the league's championship series, only to lose a 3 games to 1 lead. How has this one particular team suffered a 58 year drought in between World Series visits, with stars such as Ernie Banks, Ryne Sandberg and Sammy Sosa? The answer to this question to many people is simple, the curse of the Billy goat.



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