"I was hoping we would make it and Chicago would make it. It would have been great for the fans."
Little, as he predicted, was fired. In an odd bit of cross-pollination, the Cubs hired him as a scout and the Sox replaced him with a former Cub, Terry Francona. The Cubs also signed Sox second baseman Todd Walker and on July 31 traded for Garciaparra. The Cubs dealt Gonzalez to Montreal, by way of Boston. Bartman, who knows? "Personally," Baker says, "I'd like to win it all and put him at the front of the parade, to exonerate him for the rest of his life."
In front of millions of slack-jawed, rubbernecking viewers, the Cubs and the Red Sox chose the same point in baseball time to reaffirm their raison d'�tre: five outs to go. But to those faithful to the Cubbies and the Sawx, what defines the ball clubs better than the catastrophes themselves is what follows. The franchises exist not to fail but to try and try again. They exist for that one time when it is meant to be.
In 1922, four years after the Sox had won the Series and 14 after his hometown Cubs had done so, Carl Sandburg wrote a poem entitled For You that included this inadvertent article of faith.
The peace of great changes be for you.
Whisper, Oh beginners in the hills.
Tumble, Oh cubs--tomorrow belongs to you.
And still they faithfully wait, Cubs and Sox alike, for tomorrow. They believe, God willing, in the life of the world to come. Amen.