George Wendt considers not hating the Cubs

George Wendt considers not hating the Cubs

August 26, 2013, 8:30 am
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Alex Ruppenthal

Beginning tonight at 7:00, join Comcast SportsNet as we air Woody's Wiffle Ball Classic. Watch as celebrities and athletes join former Cubs pitcher Kerry Wood on Chicago's North Side and raise over $490,000 for the Wood Family Foundation.

George Wendt grew up a White Sox fan on the South Side, but he’s warming up to the idea of rooting for the other Chicago team, too.

The former “Cheers” star was on an impressive list of celebrities recruited by Kerry Wood for his foundation’s inaugural Wiffle ball charity game at Wrigley Field on Aug. 10. Maybe he was hexed by the ivy on the outfield wall, but Wendt said he’s actually thinking about adopting the Cubs, even though he doesn’t seem like one of those “I just root for Chicago” kind of guys.

"I'm a South-Sider,” Wendt said while standing on Wrigley’s right-field line before Woody’s Wiffle Ball Classic. “I grew up a Sox fan, but I really did like those '60s Cubs. [Don] Kessinger, [Glenn] Beckert, Fergie [Jenkins], [Ron] Santo, [Randy] Hundley, Billy Williams, Ernie [Banks]. Those were great, fun teams. I enjoyed the hell out of that.”

It wasn’t until 1997, when the teams started playing each other each year, that Wendt had an annual reason to cheer against the North Siders.

“I didn't really start hating the Cubs until interleague play,” Wendt said. “Recently I'm re-thinking my position. I'm starting to admire the Cubs. They're hanging in there. They're showing me something. And also I realized, really I just hated [Carlos] Zambrano. And then after that I started hating [Carlos] Marmol. I’m sorry, those poor guys, both of them. They’ve had tremendous careers and probably still more to come.

“[But] now I'm toying with the idea of not hating the Cubs. I'm going to point the way forward. It's an olive branch. I'm going to point the way forward for all of Chicago and next, the Middle East."

It’s a jump he’s considered before, albeit for other reasons.

"Earlier I thought about switching to the Cubs as a career move, so I could be with the cool guys, you know, Johnny Cusack, the Murrays and Jeremy Piven,” Wendt said. “But I thought there’s other ways to have a career move... so I stayed a Sox fan.”