The Cleveland Indians are now the holders of the American League record for the most consecutive wins.

Repeat after me.

21. Straight. Wins.

That kind of record, no matter if it’s a personal or team sport, is just absolutely ridiculous, and only comes around once in a blue moon.

Savor this moment Cleveland fans, because I’m not sure when we’ll see something like this ever again.

As a Cleveland fan, this win streak (and to be honest, this team) feels like a dream. You see, this kind of thing doesn’t usually happen to Cleveland. When good luck has struck in the past, the team found new and inventive ways to collapse. However, for the last 21 games, and throughout the course of the season, the team has found new and inventive ways to win. They’re the ones finding ways to wear the other team down, and digging deep to win when all seems lost.

That’s why I’m not taking this team, this win streak, hell, this season for granted. We are lucky to be witnessing history in front of our very eyes, because it probably won’t happen again for a long time, maybe even ever. I shed a tear today as I watched Lonnie Chisenhall make the final catch to etch my favorite sports team into the record books, and throughout the whole time I could only think of one person; my dad.

My dad was born in February 1953, less than five years removed from the last World Series that was won by the Indians. He grew up in East Cleveland on East 152nd Street near Lakeshore Boulevard, before moving out to Chesterland in fifth-grade.

He played baseball as a kid, and was told stories of Bob Feller, Lou Boudreau, Earl Averill and other Cleveland legends. In turn, he made sure that his first son (me) would be raised with a baseball glove in his hand.

As a kid, I had the privilege of growing up alongside some of the greatest Indians teams, and my earliest memories revolve around watching Jim Thome, Omar Vizquel, Manny Ramirez and others playing in the most beautiful ballpark in the MLB. To this day, my dad and I still refer to it as Jacobs Field.

Because I grew up in Pennsylvania, all of my friends are either Pittsburgh or Philadelphia fans, so being a Cleveland fan was a source of pride for me. Going on trips to see the team play meant that for 3 hours, my dad and I could experience in person the greatest source of joy that we had, and when we would get home late at night, we’d sleep happy no matter the result because we got to see our heroes play.

When Francisco Lindor smiles, I smile. When I see the guys laugh with each other and take such pride in playing the game that they love, I know that I’m watching a team that’s destined for greatness.

This team, and the record they now own is extraordinary, and that’s why I’m going to cherish each and every moment of the rest of this incredible season.

@fonticellaphoto

cf044312@ohio.edu

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