Cubs News

The Cubs’ energy and passion has been so impressive, even opposing announcers are paying compliments

4 years agoTony Andracki

The Cubs are used to playing their home games in a packed house and expect a sizable group of Cubs fans on the road.

Wherever they go, there is almost assuredly a few hundred Cubs hats in the crowd, showing and shouting their support for the team.

But the Cubs can’t lean on that direct support inside stadiums this year. They don’t have 42,000 screaming fans on their feet for crucial moments.

So they’ve had to create their own energy and adrenaline and so far in 2020, they’ve answered the call in a huge way.

So much so, in fact, that even opposing teams are taking notice.

Reds broadcaster Thom Brennaman paid this Cubs team a high compliment Tuesday night when he saw the reaction in the dugout after David Bote’s 8th inning home run.

“Look at this dugout,” Brennaman said on the Fox Sports Ohio broadcast. “I mean, look, you can hate the Cubs. It makes no difference. But you’ve got to give it up to a team that is showing this kind of fire and passion and enthusiasm that they are showing.

“There’s a lot of guys down there making tens of millions of dollars a year and they’re coming to the ballpark like they are playing for a high school team. And I don’t say that in a negative way in any form or fashion. In fact, it’s a compliment. And I’m sure a lot of people will get upset for me saying something nice about the Cubs, but it is what it is.”

Brennaman spent 1990-1995 as the play-by-play broadcaster for the Cubs, alternating between the radio and TV booth with Harry Caray.

But since he left Chicago, most North Side fans have seen Brennaman as anti-Cubs, which means this particular compliment carries a ton of weight.

The Cubs have made a conscious effort to have more fun at the field this season, aiming to play together as a team more.

“Now that we have a short season, we’re playing more as a team than ever,” Javy Báez said after Tuesday night’s win. “[Having fun has] been a big thing here in the clubhouse. We’re having more fun than anything, I think. Rizzo has been crazy, trying to make us be together and it’s working.”

The energy has been palpable in the first few games of the season, with players shouting and cheering not only on big plays, but also every time one of their teammates even fouls the ball off.

“We need it, every day,” Anthony Rizzo said over the weekend at Wrigley Field. “We’re gonna create our own atmosphere in that dugout, win or lose. We’re gonna create our own energy and we’re gonna have fun with it as much as we can.

“There’s gonna be days where things don’t go our way, but we’re gonna keep those spirits high and I think everyone understands the importance of being together and winning. That’s all it’s about, just winning.”

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