The two teams squaring off in Major League Baseball's World Series, which begins Tuesday night, have not won the fall classic for a combined 176 years.
The Cleveland Indians, which will host the first two games in the best-of-seven series, last won the World Series (annual championship of Major League Baseball in North America) in 1948. The Chicago Cubs have not won the fall classic for 108 years - since 1908.
The Cubs rewarded their faithful followers at their iconic stadium, Wrigley Field, Saturday night by beating the Los Angeles Dodgers, 5-0, to win the best-of-seven National League Championship Series, four games to two. They had not won the National League title since 1945. Cleveland advanced by winning the American League Championship Series last week in five games over the Toronto Blue Jays.
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President Barack Obama, who spent much of his life in Chicago, is a lifelong White Sox fan. The Chicago White Sox are the other Chicago baseball team. The Sox won the World Series in 2005 after not having won it since 1917. So they have had the bragging rights. Most baseball fans in Chicago who like the Cubs don't like the Sox, and vice versa.
But on Sunday, Obama extended his congratulations to the Chicago Cubs in a tweet. "I'll say it . . . Even this White Sox fan was happy to see Wrigley rocking last night,” Obama wrote.
Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton is a lifelong Cubs fan, having gone to Cubs games as a child with her father. And a photo tweeted by her traveling press secretary Nick Merrill, showed her looking thrilled at the news while flying on her campaign airplane.
It is no surprise that many Cubs fans are finding it hard to believe that their team finally has a realistic chance of being World Series champions for the first time in more than a century. But throughout the season, this looked like it might be the year the Cubs could do it. They have a good mix of talented young and veteran pitchers and hitters, and they dominated their opponents.
The Cubs were the only team that won more than 100 games during the season, going 103-58. The next best team won 95 games.
Chicago Cubs players celebrate after Game 6 of the Major League Baseball championship series against the Los Angeles Dodgers at Wrigley Field Stadium, Chicago, Illinois, Oct. 22, 2016.
Bursting with excitement, 70-year-old Cubs fan Rich Buhrke told VOA outside Wrigley Field Sunday night that this season was unique for the Cubs who have suffered through so many losing seasons.
“When [Las] Vegas put us as the favorites to win the World Series (before the season began), it put the pressure on right away… The emotion is building already. We are going to territory we have never been in before. None of us!”
VOA's Kane Farabaugh contributed to this story from Chicago.