Will the Curse of the Billy Goat be Broken?


This statement has actually held true for the last 67 years. The Curse of the Billy Goat was supposedly placed on the Chicago Cubs in 1945 when the owner of Billy Goat Tavern was asked to leave the stadium because his pet goat stunk. To this day, it has been 105 long, sad years since our very own Chicago Cubs have won a World Series.



Can the curse be broken? It was announced Monday that the Cubs have come to an agreement with the city for a $500 million privately financed renovation of the historic Wrigley Field. They plan to use this money to redesign the locker rooms, revamp the food services, and build a new hotel and office building. They also said this renovation would bring jobs to the city and a better experience for the fans. Team Chairman Tom Ricketts even went further to say, “If this plan is approved, we will win the World Series.” As owner of this organization, Ricketts must make a change in order to keep the team alive.  They cannot continue with their same routines and expect to become a better team.

 The picture to the left shows owner of Billy Goat Tavern William “Billy” Sianis and his pet goat being denied into the game


The question that remains is do we want this renovation to take place or not? Is upper management making a cost effective and efficient decision? Or does this project contain too much risk that it could ruin the organization completely? I believe this could be a cost effective decision if the team starts winning some games. If the players are somehow motivated by a new stadium and can play more cohesively as a team, more people will attend the games, revenues will boost, and therefore this project would be worth it. This project can also contain a great amount of risk. If the team does not do well, many fans would be upset that the historical Wrigley Field was renovated for nothing.

As a Wrigleyville resident, I believe that the renovations would be somewhat of a nuisance. All of that construction going on right in my backyard is something I would not like to deal with. Management would have to find a way to keep the residence of Wrigleyville happy. On the other hand, if what they say is true and these renovations will bring jobs to the city and therefore boost the economy, I would not be opposed to that.



Another aspect to consider is the view of Tom Ricketts. As owner, he has a duty to create a successful team. What have the managers and owners done so wrong that this team has not been able to win for so long? Is there even any fault to be put on the managers and owners? I believe at least some of the fault can be put on the managers, but the players as well. It is their job as professional baseball players to win games.

 The picture to the right shows possible renovation ideas


The bottom line is that the Cubs need to win a World Series. How are they going to do this? What steps must management take in order for this project to work? Will renovating the field finally kill the Curse of the Billy Goat? Or will the curse live on…



Barrett, Joe. “Cubs Owner: Wrigley Plan ‘Will Win the World Series’.” Wall Street Journal. Dow Jones & Company, Inc, 15 Apr 2013. Web. 17 Apr 2013.


14 thoughts on “Will the Curse of the Billy Goat be Broken?

  1. Every time I hear the Chicago Cubs losing another game, I immediately think, “It must be the curse of the goat.” Then I always face the actual truth and believe the management is the reason why their win to loss ratio is horrible. There definitely needs to be some major changes and decisions made in this franchise if they want to win the World Series; however, I believe they should start from recruiting better players by using that $500 million towards their salaries. Having a fancy stadium is great but it doesn’t look so good without any wins.

  2. I believe that the renovations that could be made to Wrigley field could have a negative effect on the bars on Clark St. Those bars are not only packed on game days but all year around: college students, sports fans, and long time Cubs fans. On weekend nights both Clark and Addison are congested with cabs, commuters and drunk people. Adding construction to the mix could lead to an impossible commute and people may not want to take the time to get to Wrigleyville. The bars and restaurants’ sales could decrease leading to people laying off or businesses to close. I’m curious if they looked at all of the factors when it comes to renovating Wrigley Stadium.

  3. As a native Chicagoan, I think its time for Wrigley field to be renovated. The area needs a fresh coat of paint after so many years of hustle and bustle. Though some may argue that construction will kill business for surrounding bars, I think those same bars will experience a ten-fold increase in customers once the renovations are complete. Overall, if the stadium wants to stay competitive and win a World Series, it will have to supply its team and fans with change. Out with the old, in with the new!

  4. I believe that remodeling of Wrigley Field will be a good thing to happen for the Cubs. As long as the remodeling doesn’t take away from the history of the building I believe it will do good for the team. If there are major changes it will take away from the whole experience of the stadium. People love the stadium and its history. It is a great tourist attraction. I would love to see if they could keep the old feel but have a new up to date look.

  5. As a Cubs fan I believe these renovations will elevate the Cubs to be an elite organization instead of a laughing stock of the MLB. Players don’t like the old and run down stadium and it is hard to attract certain players who expect a more up to date facility. You would think that management would have thought about this many many years ago. The Boston Red Sox made renovations to Fenway park and look they have won 2 world series in the last 10 years after going 86 years without winning a championship. I also believe that this will create many jobs for the city and also pour even more revenue into the Wrigleyville neighborhood. I can only hope as a fan that these renovations and a new attitude to the club can finally help the Cubbies win a world series…

  6. This project causes a few concerns for me, however it is inevitable and will ultimately propel the Cubs into the realm of legitimate teams in the MLB. The primary concern is that Wrigley Field has remained essentially untouched for so long, that it has become a landmark and almost mythic figure to sports fans. Once major renovations are made, and the stadium shifts towards the more modernized style baseball has adopted (see Target Field) Wrigley will remain in name but its legendary status will be diminished. Sure, it may eventually drive in more profit for the organization thus allowing larger contracts, and hopefully more talent, but it will just not be the same. I guess its value as a monument is figured to be less than its value as a revenue driving entity, at least in the eyes of Mr. Ricketts.

  7. I agree that this project could be a nuisance. If this is at all similar to other renovation projects in Chicago, then it will take forever. While renovating the stadium could help Cubs in the long run, I think we would see an immediate negative impact on local businesses.

  8. The curse of the Billy the Goat has become a legend for people in the baseball industry. I grew up in the city and have been a Cubs fan ever since I first laid eyes upon a sport called baseball. The problem is not the curse, but its over all in the organization. One cannot place blame on the managers, recruiters, or even players. The fans will always be loyal towards the team., but in order to win the world series we have to invest the $500 million into the team from the bottom down. Renovating the stadium will be a great start, with changes in the management and the players for efficiency. Sports like any organization demands results. Its not about liking a manager or a player, if results are not driven then its time for a change. Cubs need that change in order to achieve greatness again.

  9. I agree with this project being a problem for the residents that live around the area. I lived in wriglyville last year and having just regular games was annoying because it would be hard to commute to class. I believe that this will be cost efficient because it will bring more jobs to the city and it is about time for the stadium to be revamped. The stadium seems so out of date compared to other elite teams. The only concern for me is that the timing of the project. With baseball being such a long season, how will they determine the project length and crash time so it does not interfere with the season?

  10. I’m not sure how these renovations are going to help the Cubs win a World Series, let alone a penant; In fact I am positive they will have no impact on the Cubs success as a ball club. Having said that, I am all for some renovation to Wrigley. If you asked me this same question 5 years ago I would go on and on about how the “feel” of the friendly confines needs to be preserved and kept in-tact. Since then, I have visited Fenway Park multiple times and have seen how Theo Epstein can preserve the classic feel of the park, while modernizing certain aspects of it. Overall, I think renovations would be a great addition to Wrigley. I feel they would draw bigger crowds (even Wrigley is hurting right now in ticket sales), while having little to no impact on the surrounding neighborhood.

  11. I am no trying to sound so negative…but the reality is that the Cubs will not win the World Series because of the renovations. Renovations have nothing to do with the ability and skills of the players. However, I do think that the renovations will have a substantial impact on the community and bring more business and employment. Wrigleyville is already extremely busy the crowds, traffic and neighborhood will be even more packed.

  12. I honestly don’t think that making renovations would help the Cubs win any championships but I think the renovation would be nice. However, it does bring in more crowds, but I think it will lose its sentiment just because the atmosphere would be totally different. A lot of people really enjoyed sitting on their rooftops and watching a game with their friends, but this will definitely improve the impact on business, but I feel that it would just make everything too crowded.

  13. Renovations of Wrigley is definitely a great idea! As for renovations making the cubs win, probably not! The cubs know what they have and that’s fans that don’t care whether they win or lose. The renovation will bring more revenue which is what every company should do. The main goal for every company is to maximize profits and that is exactly what the cubs are trying to do. They want to make Wrigley an experience and not just a old stadium where people who go only to drink and not really worry about whether the cubs win. The cubs should maybe stop worrying about the looks of the place and spend those millions on new players.

  14. Honestly as much as I hate to say it, the renovations are much needed for the Cubs and the city. Wrigley Field, along with Fenway Park, are the two oldest ball fields in the majors. From a business perspective, the Cubbies are going to generate a lot more revenue with the renovations, especially with the advertisements they will be putting around the ball park. With personally having the pleasure of seeing the clubhouse and parts of Wrigley, I believe the renovations are necessary to compete with these new innovative ballparks being built in other cities. Players and free agents are also excited in the type of clubhouses they have and the Cubs have one of the worst in the majors from my knowledge. Keep in mind, all good things must come to an end and even though this will sadden many people, it will also excite many fans, especially the younger generation.

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