An Inconvenient Truth: Cleveland’s Dirty Little Secret MY COLUMN

By Lewis Burik

In recent days, there’s been only one MLB story that has dominated the national headlines. The Cleveland Indians’ outlandish 22-game winning streak. And this streak absolutely should be the it story in the MLB right now.
They’ve gone on this streak in the most dominant fashion available. They’ve trailed for roughly 6 of their past 100 innings. Absurd, absurd shit.
What makes this dominant run an even better story? The ballclub is pretty damn loveable. They’re a scrappy, young, well put-together team with a ton of good ballplayers and no over-exposed, over-hyped aging sluggers. The Indians have a unique and universally respected manager, and they play in a loveable Midwest town. They burst onto the scene last year and now seem poised to finish the job in October. This sound at all familiar? Yeah, sounds an awful like the 2016 Chicago Cubs narrative.
And that is all fine and dandy!! I’m happy for the Indians and the city of Cleveland. No matter what happens in October, the historic nature of this streak of this 2017 season will long live in the memory bank’s of Indians fans.
But that brings me to my next point. This incredible streak doesn’t mean jack SHIT in October. The Indians are what the Cubs were last year. Fun up-starts, hot, loveable. But ultimately, unsure. Unproven. A contender.
The Cubs are Champions. Big Dogs. Bad guys. The cutesie storylines are gone from the Northside. It’s been replaced by a Championship pedigree.
This Indians streak has been great for baseball. But to quote the great Ric “Nature Boy” Flair, “To be the man, you got to beat the man.” The 2017 Chicago Cubs ARE the man, and the Indians are just the next guy who wants a shot at the title.
It don’t matter how many you win in September. They hand out rings in October. All the loveable-ness in the world don’t mean a thing when you’re in a 12-round fight with a battle-tested, proud champion. We’ll see you if we see you, Cleveland.