It was just announced within the past week or two that Ernie Banks -- the beloved, effervescent Mr. Cub -- will receive the Presidential Medal of Freedom. The team had a special pre-game presentation on Tuesday.
Here's how Cubs Sunshine actually sounds --
"It means everything to me," Banks said about receiving the honor. ""It means life is just wonderful. When you do things to try to help people and share things, it really comes back to you. I try to do that. I love the players, love Wrigley Field, love all the players. ... This award means a lot to me. It's almost like the Nobel Peace Prize to me."
Banks was famous for coining the phrase, "The Friendly Confines of Wrigley Field" and before particularly nice days (and then, eventually pretty much all games) declaring, "It's a beautiful day for a ballgame. Let's play two!" He added at Tuesday's tribute --"I didn't play in a World Series, I didn't play in the playoffs, but this takes the place for me,"
On the field with him was his former teammate, Hall of Famer Billy Williams, who introduced him, and who Banks hugged. And also two of the team owners Tom Ricketts and his sister Laura, who Banks danced with a little as music played over the loudspeakers.
Here's a brief interview he did about all this on the MLB Network.