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Congratulations To The White Sox

No, really.

Last year when the Red Sox won the World Series, I wrote:

I couldn't be happier unless it was the Cubs winning. I've always felt the Red Sox were kind of like our big brothers, the team that actually did make it to the World Series, only to THEN lose in spectacular fashion.

With the White Sox, of course, there's a different feeling. They're sort of like the friend you had in high school who you liked and got along with, except when he wound up stealing the girl you were interested in, and left you in the dust, and then came back and rubbed your nose in it.

That doesn't matter today. The White Sox won the World Series for the first time since 1917 by defeating the Astros 1-0 in Houston; they put a neat bookend on their season, because their very first game of the 2005 season was a 1-0 win over Cleveland. Check out the boxscore from that game; apart from the non-use of the DH, that starting lineup is absolutely identical to last night's.

I'm happy for the players, who seemed to define "team" by their unselfish, pick-each-other-up performances; I'm happy for the Sox fans who have suffered nearly as long as we have, and even for the Sox fans who will undoubtedly taunt us about all of this.

There is a good lesson for Cub management in this championship, and I hope they were paying attention.

Ozzie Guillen managed about as unconventionally as anyone I've seen in recent years. He wouldn't hesitate to use his closer in a two-inning save; he unconditionally supports his players, but at the same time, he won't hesitate to put the right players in at the right time, even if it hurts someone's feelings; and he consistently manages against "the book" and gets it to work.

There's a certain Cub manager I hope was watching closely.

BCB got a mention in the Houston Chronicle yesterday; it referred to the old joke posted in the comments in this diary. Hey, a MSM mention is always welcome here! Thanks to Kasey Ignarski for locating this post for me.

During the offseason I know we won't stop talking about the 2006 Cubs, what they should do and not do, and what they can do to make what happened for the White Sox yesterday, happen for us a year from now.

Sunday, at the Cell, I was talking to the two Sox fans sitting next to us -- a father and son, the son a man about my age. I asked him if one year ago, he could have envisioned what was unfolding before his eyes. Of course, the answer was, "No way," and that tells you that the Cubs CAN do it, if the right moves are made.

We await them. Opening Day is only 158 days away!