For reasons unexplained, baseball fans indulge in freakish rituals they believe are crucial to their team’s prosperity. Skip one on the week your team happens to lose, and you’ll suffer unendurable guilt. On the flip side, when you stay true to your superstitions and your team is victorious, the result feels euphoric. Back in 2016, the Cubs had a chance to claim their first World Series title in more than a century, and I stood shoulder-to-shoulder with other fans in a sticky sports bar wearing my trusty Anthony Rizzo pinstripe jersey. It was stained with a month’s worth of makeup, beer, barbecue sauce, and sweat, but if I’d washed it or worn anything else during the playoffs, it would have been bad juju. I also only drank Midwestern beer brewed west of the border of Indiana and Illinois, one state over from Cleveland Indians, just to be safe. I’d made the mistake the previous year of drinking Great Lakes Brewing Company during the playoffs, which ended in a crushing sweep by the New York Mets.