CLEVELAND — Buoyed by a sense of the history that will be made sometime next week, Cleveland Indians first baseman/designated hitter Mike Napoli was rooting for the Cubs to win the National League Championship Series and be his team’s opponent in the World Series.
Napoli, who was on the losing side of the 2011 World Series with the Texas Rangers and won the 2013 World Series with the Boston Red Sox, said he’s well aware of the stigmas attached to the Cubs’ 108-year championship drought and the Indians’ 68-year stretch without a title. Having these two teams meet to have one of those streaks end should provide a breathtaking backdrop to the Fall Classic.
“That’s the reason why I wanted the Cubs to win, to play against them,” Napoli said. “What they’ve gone through — I thought it would be an amazing scenery to be able to play in both of these stadiums at this time. I thought it would be something cool.”
Napoli added that he has plenty of friends on the Cubs stemming from his three seasons in Boston. He was teammates with Cubs starters Jon Lester and John Lackey and catcher David Ross in that championship-winning year of 2013.
But the magnitude of what’s on the line for not only the Indians’ fanbase, but the Cubs’, is why Napoli wanted this to be the matchup in the World Series.
“They’ve gone through a long wait,” Napoli said, “so it’s pretty cool for them to make it.”