Ford unveiled the Model-T.
The FBI was established.
Born: Red Barber.
Died: Grover Cleveland (not the pitcher; the 22nd and 24th president). Lest you get smug, Indians fans, here is your 1948 snapshot: Gallon of gas: 25 cents.
New 1949 Ford four-door: $1,333.
The telephone answering machine debuted -- the "Electronic Secretary" weighed 80 pounds.
Born: Bryant Gumbel.
Died: Babe Ruth.
Both teams have tried hard since. The Cubs a little harder, the Indians a little more recently. The Cubs are 0-for-their-past-11 postseasons, which include seven unsuccessful World Series appearances between 1910 and 1945. Their overall record in postseason games since 1908: 15-42, very dark indeed.
The Indians are riding an 0-for-8 postseason skid, including three World Series appearances and an aggregate record of 31-34. The bulk of that came during their rebirth in the latter half of the '90s, when they appeared in five consecutive postseasons as the AL Central champ, every one of them ending with manager Mike Hargrove declaring, "We will try again next year."That, of course, is the Ohio version of the well-known North Side mantra, "Wait 'til next year." Is this next year? The Racing Post of London, where such business is above-board, is touting its subscribers to bet the Indians to win the World Series. The Cubs have recruited an even more renowned tout, comedian Bill Murray, who said, "I really feel this is going to happen. I feel very good about this team. I have all year." The Cubs also have one of the two necessities for postseason nirvana: an indisputable starting ace to set the tone. Carlos Zambrano has had long streaks of both mediocrity and dominance, and three weeks of the latter could spark the Cubs. This is a Cleveland asset, too. The lack of a forceful No. 1 starter, someone able to match up with the opposition's ace, in fact has played a huge role in the Indians' recent postseason struggles: They've lost the first game in eight of their past 10 playoff series, bad news in any short series. These Indians, however, have C.C. Sabathia, a front-runner for the AL Cy Young Award. Their No. 2, Fausto Carmona, isn't far behind. The other requirement for playoff success: a door-slamming closer. Well, both teams tread on thin ice when it comes to that. The Cubs' Ryan Dempster has a terrific saves percentage (28 of 31), and Cleveland counterpart Joe Borowski led the American League with 43 saves. But Borowski (5.23) and Dempster (4.24) rank absolutely last in ERA among the 19 big league closers with 28-plus saves. Borowski in particular has been Maalox Man for Eric Wedge -- the politically correct update to Earl Weaver's Don (Full Pack) Stanhouse, who used to drive his Baltimore manager to chain smoke with his mound adventures. Opponents have hit Borowski at a near-.300 clip. Oh ... Borowski was the Cubs' closer for that short-circuited 2003 drive for the Series. So he has nearly as much experience dealing with spirits as pitching out of trouble. Both will come in handy in the coming days and weeks.
Tom Singer is a reporter for MLB.com This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.