Some free-agents only follow the money, they’re only connection to their new city is the paycheck they receive. Carlos Pena is different, he knows the passionate Cubs’ fans and can’t wait to play for them.
“I’ve known about it forever,” Pena said on the Mully and Hanley Show when asked about the passion of Cubs’ fans. “I’ve been watching the Cubs since I was a little kid.”
LISTEN: Carlos Pena On The Mully And Hanley Show
Pena spent the last four seasons with the Tampa Bay Rays, who aren’t known for having the most active and involved fan base. It’s likely that the Cubs’ fans had as much to do with Pena signing with the team as anything.
“Growing up in Boston I got the taste of a passionate city loving its team and standing behind them, cheering for them and crying for them,” Pena said. “Boston is the perfect example of a passionate baseball city and they tell me that Chicago is even better, that it’s more intense.”
Players can have a difficult time dealing with the pressure and intensity that comes with playing in a city like Chicago, Boston or New York. Cubs’ fans have seen players like Milton Bradley collapse under the pressure.
“I cant reiterate enough how excited I am to be part of that,” Pena said. “I can’t wait to feel the passion. I can’t wait to feel the whole entire fan base that stands behind us and really pull for us. I think it’s going to be just a wonderful experience.”