Fourteen years after being accused of costing the Chicago Cubs a chance to go to the World Series, Steve Bartman has been given a 2016 World Series ring, the Chicago Tribune reported.
"On behalf of the entire Chicago Cubs organization, we are honored to present a 2016 World Series Championship Ring to Mr. Steve Bartman," the Cubs said in a statement.
"We hope this provides closure on an unfortunate chapter of the story that has perpetuated throughout our quest to win a long-awaited World Series."
Bartman accidently interfered with a left fielder Moises Alou on a foul ball in Game 6 of the 2003 National League Championship Series, the newspaper noted. The Florida Marlins went on to win the NLCS and then became World Series champions.
But Cubs fans never forgot and accused Bartman of costing the team a chance to go to the World Series. And many made him a scapegoat, the Chicago Sun-Times reported.
"While no gesture can fully lift the public burden he has endured for more than a decade, we felt it was important Steve knows he has been and continues to be fully embraced by this organization," the Cubs organization said. "After all he has sacrificed, we are proud to recognize Steve Bartman with this gift today."
And Bartman issued his own statement: "Although I do not consider myself worthy of such an honor, I am deeply moved and sincerely grateful to receive an official Chicago Cubs 2016 World Series Championship ring. I am fully aware of the historical significance and appreciate the symbolism the ring represents on multiple levels. My family and I will cherish it for generations."
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