Kris Bryant didn’t expect disco balls, smoke and bright lights after games in the big leagues, but that’s what happens in the Cubs clubhouse after a win.
“Every time we win, it’s like we won a World Series,” Bryant said Wednesday. “There’s disco balls and smoke every where — it’s a lot of fun. It’s something I’ve wanted to be a part of.”
He’d heard about Major League pitching, not Major League partying.
“I didn’t expect it,” Bryant said. “We just put some new lights in here and a new disco ball. I guess it’s against tradition. Usually when you win, you just expect it. Here, we’re celebrating every win. There’s nothing wrong with it.
“Guys here want to have fun, I want to have fun,” he said. “It’s much more fun when you win.”
Cubs GM Jed Hoyer gave manager Joe Maddon and the players his blessing.
“It is hard to win games, there’s no doubt,” Hoyer said. “I like the fact that they have a lot of fun. We have a young team so it adds some new life to it. Joe and Davey [Martinez, bench coach] really encourage it. [Anthony Rizzo] may be the ringleader. It’s a lot of fun and hopefully they’l have a lot of chances to continue it. If it starts to break the budget, I guess it’s a good thing.”
Maddon feels it’s important to celebrate.
“I think the more you celebrate, obviously, there’s that camaraderie component that goes with it and then furthermore you’re looking forward to celebrating again tomorrow night,” Maddon said. “It’s a lot of fun. So I don’t know why other teams don’t do it. They think it’s non-professional; I think it’s very pro. Actually. I’m pro-pro that.”
The loud celebration does let players “cherish the moment,” Maddon said, “because it’s not easy to win a Major League baseball game and to win them 90-plus times is very difficult in the same season.”
Bryant compared it to Little League games when players were rewarded with snacks after each game.
“If we go out there and pretend to be in Little League, we’ll win a lot of ballgames,” Bryant said.
— Carrie Muskat