After losing two straight World Series, the Texas Rangers experienced another hard-luck ending last season, blowing their American League West lead to Oakland on the final weekend, then losing a wild-card playoff game to Baltimore.
The Chicago Cubs, of course, can relate. They haven’t won a World Series since 1908.
The two star-crossed franchises will meet for some therapy in Las Vegas – in the form of two split-squad exhibitions – for the second straight year on March 16 and 17 at Cashman Field in the city’s 23rd annual Big League Weekend.
The Cubs, who will make their ninth straight appearance in Las Vegas and 12th overall, have sold out 14 of their last 16 games here.
“The Chicago fans, both locally and the tourists that visit during this event, provide a great atmosphere in the ballpark,” 51s executive director Don Logan said. “The Rangers are a class organization.”
Game times have not been determined because of television considerations, but ticket packages are available by calling the 51s at 702-798-7825.
Total attendance was 18,511 for last season’s two-day event. On March 17, the Rangers beat the Cubs 12-7 before a sellout of 9,889. Chicago topped Texas 3-2 before 8,622 the next day.
Hall of Famers Nolan Ryan, the Rangers owner, and Greg Maddux, special assistant to the Texas general manager, attended last season’s series here, along with Rangers pitching coach Mike Maddux.
Las Vegan Greg Maddux might be busy elsewhere during next year’s event. He recently was named pitching coach of Team USA for the 2013 World Baseball Classic, which has scheduled its championship round March 17 to 19 at San Francisco’s AT&T Park.
Contact Todd Dewey at email@example.com or 702-383-0354.