Sportress of Blogitude

Cubs take to biker theme for ‘Easy Rider’ road trip (pics/vid)

The Chicago Cubs are of course known for their themed road trips. The brainchild of skipper Joe Maddon — about as eccentric and quirky as they come in MLB managers — the intent is to not only have some fun despite an otherwise grueling aspect of the marathon baseball season, it also serves to build team unity.

Well, Maddon was back at it Sunday afternoon. Following the Cubs’ 9-4 loss to the Washington Nationals at Wrigely Field, players emerged wearing biker gear for their “Easy Rider”-themed road trip that begins Monday with a three-game set scheduled against the San Francisco Giants.

The entire Cubs contingent posed for a group shot just before boarding the plane.

The Cubs’ official Twitter account also got in on the action, showcasing how each players’ biker vest featured a unique nickname.

Born to be wild, indeed.

Despite the Cubs’ being in a bit of slide, losing four of five games, Maddon said the players were “jacked up” for the Easy Rider road trip. Further, Maddon made the following interesting observation about the Cubbies.

“I don’t know that we’ve had enough fun this year, quite frankly,” Maddon said. “And a lot of that comes with winning, obviously. That’s just the natural residue of winning, that you have more fun. … I just think this is good timing for right now.”

It was actually Cubs strength coach Tim Buss, not Maddon, who came up with theme for the current road trip. But Maddon sets the stage for such quirky team-building exercises.

“I love it, I think it’s good,” Maddon said. “Anything you can do to unify the group, it’s always a good thing. It’s fun. And for the group that doesn’t understand it, that’s too bad that you’ve forgotten what it’s like to be a kid.”

The Cubs went on a celebrated “Anchorman”-themed road trip earlier this season. The team disappointingly went 0-6 on that particular West Coast sojourn. Maddon obviously hopes the Cubs fare better on the road this time around.