Cubs to don 'Anchorman,' 1970s fashions on road trip to California

ByJesse Rogers ESPN logo
Thursday, May 25, 2017

CHICAGO -- If you see a Cubs player wearing bell-bottoms or a large collar while walking down Sunset Boulevard in Los Angeles this weekend or in the Gaslamp Quarter in San Diego next week, don't be alarmed.

Manager Joe Maddon has finally pulled the trigger on one of his patented themed road trips. The 1970s will be featured when the team heads to the West Coast on Thursday night.

"It's the Ron Burgundy/Brick Tamland -- and I also wanted to include Tommy La Stella -- tribute road trip where 60 percent of the time it works every time sponsored by Sex Panther cologne," Maddon joked on Wednesday.

Burgundy and Tamland refer to characters in the 1970s-based movie "Anchorman" played by Will Ferrell and Steve Carrell, while La Stella is a Cubs infielder who Maddon thinks resembles Tamland.

"They're like two interchangeable guys," Maddon said. "I see Brick, I see Tommy. I see Tommy, I see Brick. Put some glasses on Tommy, some sideburns, I got Brick."

La Stella, who plays Triple-A ball, responded via text: "Ha, he and I were talking about that in Colorado when he brought it up. Love it."

To top off the '70s theme, Maddon referenced on several occasions the movie's Sex Panther cologne, which boasts the motto: "Sixty percent of the time it works every time."

"I always liked the idea when we go to San Diego we do the 'Anchorman' thing," Maddon explained. "The timing was right this time."

"Anchorman," released in 2004, was set in San Diego.

Maddon would have preferred the Cubs went to San Diego first, then to Los Angeles; instead, they'll play three games at Dodger Stadium before heading to Petco Park early next week.

It has been a while since the Cubs have pulled off a theme trip -- this is the first this season -- so players are looking forward to it. The only problem is the 1970s was a long time ago.

"Do I know anything about the '70s?" 22-year-old rookie Ian Happ asked with a smile. "Just the Ron Burgundy theme. Seen 'Anchorman.' I'll base it off that."

Shortstop Addison Russell echoed those sentiments. If not for "Anchorman," a lot of these Cubs would be lost.

"I'm excited for it," Russell said. "Just to see what these guys bring out of their wardrobe. It makes the plane ride out West more fun."

Most of the guys found their outfits online. However,Kris Bryant intends on wearing a tuxedo Ellen Degeneres gave him when he appeared on her show after winning the World Series.

Sometimes Maddon uses these theme trips or other gimmicks to distract his team from the pressures of the moment, but even though the World Series champions have hovered around .500 most of this season, this trip was simply about San Diego and Maddon's love for the movie "Anchorman."

"You don't force it," he said. "If it's the right time, it's the right time. If not, you move it along.

"We always like to be reminded to have a good time."

Over his first couple of years with the Cubs, Maddon has done the zany suit trip and the basketball sweat pants look, and he encouraged "Miami Vice" attire when going to South Beach. Yet this is his first 1970s-themed trip.

As usual, the players are onboard.

"It gets your mind off the game a little bit," Russell said. "You see smiling faces all the time."

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