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WSJ: Tear down Wrigley Field now!

Wrigley Field 2014 plan

Though we’re not seeing the logic besides the need to generate flamebait, a writer for the Wall Street Journal is calling for the Chicago Cubs to tear down Wrigley Field so the team can win a World Series.

We pass along the article by Rich Cohen not because we agree with its central premise (no, we don’t think the Friendly Confines are to blame for the team’s inability to win a World Series while calling it home since 1916) but because it’s a pretty witty article, throwing out some absurdities to make a point or two. Given the economics of the situation — the Cubs are one of the most profitable teams in MLB and have the potential to up that bottom line with proposed Wrigley Field upgrades — we don’t see the Cubs biting the bullet and committing what’s sure to be a billion dollars, plus at least two years of decreased revenues if a new ballpark goes on the current Wrigley Field site. It’s just economically unrealistic for the Cubs to seek a new ballpark.

But that’s not stopped Cohen from making an absurd argument for a new ballpark, simultaneously decrying Cubs fans for being complacent while attacking the front office for caring more about historic atmosphere than winning:

I saw it with my own eyes in the eighth inning of Game 6 of the 2003 National League Championship Series. This was the infamous Bartman game, in which a foul ball, which might otherwise have been caught by Moises Alou, was grabbed at by Steve Bartman, a Cubs fan. The Cubs, up 3-0 and just five outs from their first World Series appearance since 1945, immediately allowed eight runs, lost the game and, a day later, the series.

And whom do Cubs fans blame? The million-dollar players who couldn’t overcome the slightest turbulence? Of course not. They blame the fan. That’s what 100 years of losing does to your psyche.

What will happen when the Cubs walk away from Wrigley? They will forget, and as they forget, they will win. Think of 100 years in Wrigley as 40 years in the wilderness. It’s time for a new generation to be born, untouched by the slavery of endless defeat.

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