Warm memories swept through the North Side of Chicago on Monday.
Cubs fans celebrated left-hander Jon Lester and outfielder Kyle Schwarber as the pair returned to Wrigley Field for the first time as members of the Washington Nationals. Both played important roles in the Cubs' curse-breaking World Series championship win in 2016.
Their former teammates got the party started before taking the field. Cubs first baseman Anthony Rizzo was spotted entering Wrigley in a Lester jersey hours before facing his former teammate:
After a video tribute aired on the scoreboards, Cubs manager David Ross - a teammate of both players in 2016 and Lester's onetime personal catcher - presented Schwarber with a No. 12 placard from Wrigley's iconic scoreboard:
Schwarber tipped his cap to another ovation before his first plate appearance and embraced Chicago catcher Willson Contreras. Lester received a loud ovation of his own while warming up before the bottom of the first:
Lester, 37, and Schwarber, 28, each spent six seasons with the Cubs, helping them earn five playoff berths. Both players joined Washington as free agents this past winter.