Cheap Seats

On this date in history, October 14

Go Crazy folks. On this date 25 years ago on Oct. 14, 1985 Ozzie Smith cranked an improbable homer in the bottom of the ninth inning of game five of the National League Championship Series to beat the Dodgers 3-2 and send the series back to Los Angeles.

Two days later, fueled by a Jack Clark homer over a glove spiking Pedro Guerrero, The birds won the series four games to two and headed to the World Series to face the Royals.

What could possibly go wrong?

It didn't have anything directly to do with the Cardinals. But Oct. 14, 2003 is certainly a date that Redbird rooters hold dear.

A sure sign that the end of the World was near, the Cubs led the Marlins 3-0 with but five outs to play in the seventh game of the National League Championship Series at Wrigley Field.

Somehow the Wee Bears managed to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory by choking up five hits, three walks and a devastating fielding error that led to eight unanswered Florida runs. Best of all, Chicago fans and some players had the gall to try to blame the most spectacular collapse in sports history on a lifelong Cubs fan by the name of Steve Bartman who had the misfortune to try to catch a foul ball down the left field line.

Outfielder Moises Alou reacted violently when the ball ticked off of Bartman's glove and into the seats. But he later admitted the obvious: There was no way he was going to catch a ball that home plate views showed was three feet deep in the stands over an eight-foot wall.

Frankly, I was shocked that Cubs fans could stomach watching 2003 Marlin Derek Lee man first base for the home club for several years. But he is one of the few free agents who could keep his word to bring a World Series ring to Wrigley. At least to show it off to his Chicago team mates who would never get one of their own...