Wednesday November 16th, 2016

Chicago Cubs owner Tom Ricketts is already focusing on the team's World Series title defense in 2017 and his plans including reaching out to notorious fan Steve Bartman, according to USA Today's Bob Nightengale.

“I’m sure we’ll reach out to him at the right time,’’ Ricketts said. “And I’m sure we’ll figure something out that provides closure for everybody. Hopefully, we can make it work.”

“But you know, I never focused on ghosts or curses or Bartmans or any of that stuff,” Ricketts added. “It’s always been about needing a better team on the field. We wanted to eventually get to that point where we can pick out rings, like we did (Tuesday), and here we are.’”

Bartman became famous when he sat in the front row along the leftfield foul line at Wrigley Field and extended his arms to try to catch a foul ball in the eighth​ inning. He interfered with Cubs outfielder Moises Alou with five outs to go in Game 6 of the National League Championship Series against the Florida Marlins. The Cubs went on to blow their lead in Game 6 and lose Game 7 to Florida. The Marlins defeated the Yankees in the World Series.

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Bartman's name swirled throughout the playoffs as fans expected him to possibly make an appearance. Cleveland Indians second baseman Jason Kipnis floated the idea of Bartman throwing out the first pitch during the World Series.

However, Bartman remained in the shadows as he has since 2003 and watched the World Series from home. He issued a statement after the Cubs ended their 108-year World Series drought in which he said he was “just overjoyed that the Cubs won, as all the Cubs fans are.”

Bartman still lives and works in the Chicago area. The Cubs have previously invited Bartman back to Wrigley Field and he has declined any offer.

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