An open letter to Tom Ricketts

June 30, 2014

The following is an open letter to Cubs owner Tom Ricketts.

 

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Dear Mr. Ricketts,

 

First, I wanted to say thanks for an overwhelmingly incredible experience last weekend. I’ll always cherish the memory of getting to sing “Go Cubs Go” after the Cubs won the very first game I saw at Wrigley Field.

 

The brief few hours I spent at the park are a memory I will always cherish, and I’m thrilled to be able to share those emotions right now, with America, and hopefully with my kids, grandkids, great grandkids, etc., as I get older.

 

As a lifelong Cubs fan who can now proudly say he’s been to Wrigley, I wanted to express my gratitude for providing an unparalleled amount of nostalgia -- and strongly encourage you to continue to push for the broad upgrades the stadium so sorely needs.

 

You see, in addition to my time at Wrigley -- believe me, it’s one of the biggest reasons I’m on this cross-country tour -- I’ve had the pleasure of taking in games at about a dozen other ballparks, including a handful of minor-league parks, including Slugger Field in Louisville, Kentucky.

 

The Cubs have one of the richest histories in baseball, with a global fan base that spans generations. The field is located in the heart of one of the most beautiful cities in the United States.


But when you wipe away the nostalgia, all the rich history, all of the Tinker-to-Evers-to-Chance memories -- the stadium itself is simply pitiful.

 

In fact, take away the nostalgia -- again, of course, easier said than done -- and Wrigley Field is quite possibly the worst ballpark I’ve visited this summer. Objectively, it hardly measures up to Slugger Field -- a park housing the AAA-Reds.

 

Please don’t take offense. I love the Cubs, as do tens of millions of fans around the world.

 

But I also love winning -- something your Cubs haven’t done on the grandest scale in more than 100 years.

 

Like I said, please don't take this the wrong way -- the feeling of stepping through the gates at Wrigley for the first time is an emotion I cannot compare to anything else in my life.

 

But.

 

It’s time our team played the game in an environment built to foster winning. It’s time to stop thinking that we have to try and build a winner without taking advantage of modern technologies. It’s time we stop playing in an un-editable museum, and it’s time the tens of thousands of fans in the stadium, and the millions of fans around the world, stop being held hostage by the owners of a few hundred seats perched conveniently above the park’s walls.

 

So, Mr. Ricketts, I urge you. Continue fighting the good fight. Take my $188.50 (tickets, 2 Goose Islands, a phenomenally delicious Chicago Dog, a hat, a scorecard and a $5.50 Gatorade), and put it towards the upgrades that the ballpark so desperately needs.

 

Because much like the Cubs organization, I, too, am building for the future. And when I bring my kids to Wrigley someday, as cool as all this nostalgia is, I want them to see a winner.

 

Go Cubs Go.

 

 

Chris Strub

www.teamstrub.com

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