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If you’ve been online, you likely noticed that today, October 21, 2015, is the day Marty McFly and Doc Brown go to in 1989’s Back to the Future 2. It’s hard to miss. One thing that film predicts is that, after an epic drought, the Chicago Cubs will win the World Series. They’re currently in the midst of the National League Championship Series, but it turns out that, if they need it, they’ll have a little help from another Hollywood movie, Rookie of the Year.
The 1993 family wish-fulfillment comedy revolves around a young boy who, after an accident, gets a powerful pitching arm and plays for the Cubs. The kid’s name is Henry Rowengartner, and he’ll be around tonight if the Cubbies need his services. Or at least Thomas Ian Nicholas, the actor who played the character, will be, as he took to Twitter to reveal that he’ll be at the game this evening.
In Rookie of the Year, Henry is a 12-year-old little leaguer with dreams of playing in the majors for his favorite team, the Cubs. Problem is he’s not very good. But when he breaks his arm, the tendons heal too tight, giving him the remarkable ability to throw a baseball really hard, and thus the Cubs add a middle school kid to the roster. Sounds plausible, right?
But if the Cubs were ever going to give Henry, or Thomas Ian Nicholas, a chance, tonight might very well be the game. They’re down three games to none to the Mets in the NLCS, and if they lose tonight, they’re season is over and an entire generation will be traumatized because Back to the Future 2 lied to us all those years ago. What the hell do they have to lose?
And Nichols isn’t lying in his tweet, he actually is going to be wearing a Cubs jersey with the name Rowengartner emblazoned across the shoulders. Talking to ESPN yesterday, he told the story of how that came to be, saying:
Usually when I go to the game I wear the jersey the Cubs made for me with my last name, Nicholas, on it but I called the team and I said, ‘Can you make a Rowengartner jersey for me?,’ I’ve never done that. I haven’t worn a Rowengartner jersey since the movie, but I feel like we kind of need it right now. It’s kind of like my rally cap.
The Cubs can use every bit of luck, goodwill, prayer, or other positive vibes they can get their hands on if they hope to reel off four straight wins and make it to the World Series. And just in case you’re interested, Nicholas is also in a band that will be playing at a nearby pub after the game, so there’s that.