The Chicago Cubs have beaten the Cleveland Indians in the final game of the World Series to clinch their first baseball championship in over a century. Utility man Ben Zobrist was named the Series' Most Valuable Player.
The Chicago Cubs needed an extra inning in Cleveland to top the Indians in Game 7, but they were able to complete their World Series comeback with an 8-7 win. This made the Cubs the first team since the 1985 Kansas City Royals to overcome a 3-1 series deficit in the World Series to win their first championship since 1908.
Cubs fans watching the final game in Chicago flooded the streets after the victory. Wrigleyville, the neighborhood around the Cubs' home stadium, Wrigley Field, was packed with fans jumping and screaming in celebration.
"It happened. It happened. Chicago, it happened," said first baseman Anthony Rizzo, who caught the final out of the game. "We did it. We're world champions. I tell ya, we're world champions. I can't believe it."
Indians starting pitcher Corey Kluber, who was attempting to become the first pitcher since 1968 to win three games in the World Series, gave up four runs in four innings. Cubs hitters Dexter Fowler, Javier Baez and David ross all hit home runs to help give Chicago six runs after six innings.
Left-handed pitcher Aroldis Chapman, whose multi-inning performance helped the Cubs win in Game 5, blew a 6-3 lead in the eighth inning when he gave up a game-tying, two-run homer to Indians outfielder Rajai Davis. But the Cubs scored two runs in the top of the 10th inning to retake the lead. Davis drove in another run in the bottom of the 10th, but Indians infielder Michael Martinez grounded out to end the game.
"We got it done. That's all that matters. It doesn't matter how," said Cubs pitcher Jon Lester, who will receive his third championship ring in his career after helping the Boston Red Sox to World Series titles in 2007 and 2013. "It's all surreal. I don't have the words to describe how I feel right now."
Ben Zobrist, who had 10 hits in 28 at bats and scored five runs over the seven-game series, won the World Series Most Valuable Player award. He also got to celebrate his second consecutive World Series title, having won a championship with the Royals last season.
The Indians now own baseball's longest title drought, having last won the World Series in 1948.
dv/pfd (AFP, AP, Reuters)