From The Forward:
After 70 seasons, the Chicago Cubs’ World Series appearance seems almost too improbable to believe; especially given the team’s long tradition of dramatic late-season collapses. But now that the team is actually favored to win the series against the Cleveland Indians—their first-game rout notwithstanding—it’s no surprise that fans are beginning to think of supernatural forces.
Rabbi Dovid Kotlarsky, an emissary of the Chabad Lubavitch Hasidic movement in East Lakeview, which encompasses Wrigley Field, spent most of the week of the playoffs observing Sukkot. But he did take some time to take his mobile sukkah, mounted on the back of a pickup truck, on a few circuits around the ballpark. Kotlarsky wore a silver jersey with “Team Chabad” printed on the front and “Rabbi Dovid” and the number 18 on the back. The Cubs themselves were in Los Angeles, but the fans were still around, and several climbed aboard the truck to join Kotlarsky in waving the lulav and the etrog.
Rabbinically, Kotlarsky told WGN-TV that the lulav and etrog symbolize unity, which is appropriate for the Cubs this year because the team has brought the entire city of Chicago together. Some fans said a hearty “Go Cubs!” as they brandished the lulav. But that, Kotlarsky says, is not the appropriate moment to bless a baseball team. The best moment, he told WGN, is during the recitation of the Sh’ma, in the silent moment between the end of the prayer and “Amen” where people are encouraged to take a moment for personal prayers.