Cubbies opening day 2015 has finally arrived! It was everything that I imagined it would be. Thousands of staggering people on Clark and Addison leaving the local establishments, ESPN filming across the street and scantily-clad women in shorts, low-cut shirts with heels and chill bumps everywhere. All of this to see the 8th Wonder of Chicago’s world. The Cubs. Year in and year out, we know they’ve under-performed. But every year is the Cubs’ year in Wrigleyville, and just like years past Cubs fans wildly come out in unwavering support because win or lose, it’s sure to be a great time.
Add to that this year the stadium underwent over $500 million dollars in renovations, and the high profile court-drama between the Rickett’s and the rooftop owners, well we were all itching to get a get a glimpse of the renovated stadium and see what all of the hoopla has been about.
Here is some of the good from opening day!;
- There were fantastic tributes to Ernie Banks
It’s clear that Ernie Banks is “Mr. Cub” and that he meant a lot to the organization. They honored #14 at the start of the game along with Cardinals outfielder Oscar Tavares, who was killed last year in a car crash. The Cubs honored Banks with tarps displaying his photos over the unfinished bleachers, and the new videoboard replayed several of his highlights and appearances at mostly every pause in gameplay.
Speaking of the videoboard;
- The videoboard is AWESOME!
The massive 42-foot-by-95-foot videoboard in left field is just plain sweet. Think 80 inch flat screen TV sitting in your living room, except it sits in left field at Wrigley Field. The picture quality of this thing is superb. It made the replays of Ernie Banks’ highlights even sweeter. We can now watch instant replays and view endless corporate ads thanks to this awesome new videoboard. Although they still keep score on the manual scoreboard, the videoboard, surely adds some much needed 21st century flavor to old Wrigley Field. According to BostonHerald.com, “a smaller videoboard in right is expected to be operating by the All-Star break.”
- The drunk people surrounding your seat are in rare form
You know the guys in front of you that still wear the Fukudome jerseys and swear relentlessly at players from right field? Along with the drunk couple to the right of you that keeps getting up and having to pee and stepping on your penny loafers as they go by. Yep, those folks are back and not only are they ordering 8 beers by the 3rd inning, but they showed up wasted and are back to providing entertainment in the stands during slow periods of the game.Link: The 7 weirdos you may come across in Wicker Park
- Baseball at Wrigley Field is back!
Nothing like Brats, $8 Budweiser and being in Wrigley Field on a brisk opening day with dusk setting in. Clear skies, 747’s cruising overhead and the sound of the Redline passing every 4 minutes in the background. Baseball in Wrigley is back!
And, here is some of the not-so-good;
- Bathroom logistics were terrible…I mean freaking horrible!
You know something is off when the line to the guys bathroom is 100 deep. Not even exaggerating! We have come to expect long lines at women’s bathrooms, but guys are usually in and out and half don’t even wash their hands. (Sick IKR!) Let me tell you, having 35,000 people – half holding full beer cups – and two operational bathrooms is a recipe for urinary disaster. According to Cubs spokesman Julian Green, “Two bathrooms in the upper deck went down temporarily forcing fans downstairs where we already were experiencing issues with long wait times.” Long wait times is understatement of the week. We waited almost 40 minutes to use the bathroom. It got so bad, people were peeing in cups and hanging out on the first floor vendor section by the bathrooms. Not good Cubby suits. Not good.
- Bleachers are not ready
I’m loving the awesome Ernie Banks bleacher tarps, but Wrigley Field, just ain’t Wrigley Field without the bleachers and bleacher bums. Last time I sat in the bleachers, they kicked a guy out for trying to pass out napkins to everyone that he stole from one of the hotdog vending counters.
I mean, where else can you find bleacher-esque entertainment like that? We knew quite a while back that they wouldn’t be ready for opening day,but it will be great to see them open for business again.
- The Cardinals won 3-0
Oh yeah, there was a baseball game going on too. Nothing brings down opening day like losing to your shit-talking rivals at home. The Cards spoiled new Cubby manager Joe Maddon’s debut, but they had a ton of help from the Cubs runners who went 0-13 with runners in scoring position. $155 million pitcher Jon Lester was pulled in the fifth inning after allowing three runs and eight hits.
Still a great day at the ball park! Cubbies have to pick it up to be competitive in the NL this year and go all the way. (Remember, it is the Cubbies year!) Cubby suits have to make sure that the bathrooms are fixed at the next game, or there will be fan-backlash-hell to pay.