Cusack in attendance for Game 2
Chicago-born actor at U.S. Cellular Field to watch White Sox
CHICAGO -- Growing up in Chicago as a baseball fan means one of two things -- you either root for the Cubs or the White Sox.
For actor John Cusack, a native of the North Side of Chicago, the decision wasn't that easy. The avid baseball fan grew up attending games at both Wrigley Field and Comiskey Park, leaving him torn as to who to root for.
So he made a decision to be the rare Chicago fan that rooted for both.
"I'm a fan of both teams," Cusack said. "I grew up loving the Cubs and the Sox. I'm not sorry, I won't apologize for it. I'm just a fan of Chicago baseball."
Cusack didn't seem to have trouble with that decision until recently. He openly supported the White Sox during the team's postseason run in 2000 after he had filmed a movie called "Eight Men Out" in 1988, which was about the 1919 Black Sox scandal. Cusack also showed support to the Cubs when the team made the National League Championship Series in 2003.
That strong support Cusack showed for the Cubs seemed to rub White Sox chairman Jerry Reinsdorf the wrong way. An article ran in one of the Chicago papers on Wednesday that quoted Reinsdorf as saying that Cusack called for tickets but wasn't granted any since he showed his true colors. When Cusack found out about the article, he called the chairman to let him know his loyalties didn't lie completely on the North side.
"I made sure that I cleared that up with Mr. Reinsdorf," Cusack said.
Once the truth was told about his true nature as a Chicago baseball fan, Cusack made sure he was on hand Wednesday night for Game 2 of the American League Championship Series between the White Sox and the Angels. Sitting in a U.S. Cellular Field suite decked out in his black shirt while wearing a signature black White Sox cap, Cusack marveled at how wonderful it was to be back on the South Side for playoff baseball.
"There is something so beautiful about the game of baseball," Cusack said. "And there's nothing like playing in October. I feel so lucky to be watching them now."
Though Cusack has been out of the country for much of the 2005 season shooting movies, he hasn't failed to keep up with the red-hot Sox.
"I was out of town in Bulgaria and Vancouver, so I could only follow the box scores to see what everybody is hitting and then I'd watch a little bit on cable on WGN," Cusack said. "But I made sure to pay attention to how they were doing."
While the aggressiveness of the Sox and their ability to go back to playing an old-fashioned style of baseball has been fun for Cusack to watch, there is something that makes it even more enjoyable. It's that this year's success has come under the tutelage of former Sox players such as manager Ozzie Guillen.
"I love that it's Ozzie doing it and he's got all of his old players here in Harold Baines, all of those guys that I grew up watching," Cusack said. "With Tim Raines joining the coaching staff and Greg Walker who used to play first base, all of them are old players. It's just a great vibe around here."
Kelly Thesier is a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.