CHICAGO - The Chicago Cubs winning the National League pennant on Saturday was a huge event for baseball, as it broke one of the longest streaks in the game. The 71-year drought ended and the team hopes to end its 107-year World Series championship drought by beating the Cleveland Indians.
The Indians themselves are in a significant drought of their own, going 67 years since last winning the World Series. The Indians have won the pennant in 1954, 1995 and 1997 before 2016, but lost in the World Series to the New York Giants in 1954, the Atlanta Braves in 1995 and Florida Marlins in 1997.
To commemorate the Cubs’ drought ending, here are 10 things that did not exist in 1945:
MLB in California
- In 1945, the westernmost MLB team was the St. Louis Browns (they became the Baltimore Orioles in 1953). It wasn’t until the 1958 season that the Brooklyn Dodgers and New York Giants moved west and became the Los Angeles Dodgers and San Francisco Giants.
- The first artificial satellite, Sputnik 1, was launched by the Soviet Union in October 1957. America's first artificial satellite, Explorer 1, was launched in January 1958.
States of Alaska and Hawaii
- In 1945, both were territories. Both were admitted to the Union in 1959.
- The strips of data on most things bought nowadays weren’t around in 1945. The bar code was in development for years, with one of the earliest references found in 1949. The first bar code was scanned on a pack of Juicy Fruit gum in June 1974.
- Many television programs were broadcast in black and white into the 1960s, with the three major networks at the time (ABC, NBC and CBS) broadcasting full color schedules by the middle part of the decade.
- The Amana Corporation introduced the first countertop microwave oven in the 1960s. At the time, it was called the Radarange.
- The stories behind its inception have some variations, but Diner’s Club – founded in 1950 – is regarded by many as the first credit card company.
- The National Basketball Association as we know it was founded in New York City on June 6, 1946. At the time it was called the Basketball Association of America, and became the NBA in 1949 after merging with the National Basketball League. (Of note, the NBL did exist before 1945.)
The 2016 Presidential candidates
- Donald Trump (Republican, born in 1946), Hillary Clinton (Democrat, born in 1947), Jill Stein (Green Party, born in 1950), Gary Johnson (Libertarian, born in 1953) and Evan McMullin (Independent, born in 1976) have all lived in an era without the Cubs in the World Series. Trump and Clinton were both alive the last time the Cleveland Indians won a World Series, which was in 1948.
- The first such game was first played as the “AFL-NFL World Championship Game” in January 1967.
Extra: MLB Rookie of the Year Award*
- The honor was first awarded on a national level by the Baseball Writers’ Association of America (BBWAA) in 1947, but the Chicago chapter of the BBWAA established the award in 1940. The awards from 1940 to 1946 are not considered official, according to Baseball-Reference.
There are still eight teams who have never won a World Series: Texas Rangers, Houston Astros, Milwaukee Brewers, San Diego Padres, Washington Nationals, Seattle Mariners, Colorado Rockies and Tampa Bay Rays. The Nationals and the Mariners are the only teams to have never won the pennant and therefore have not reached the World Series.
No matter which team wins the series, which starts Tuesday, two droughts will have come to an end when the book is closed on the 2016 MLB season.
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