WRIGLEYVILLE — The streets surrounding Wrigley Field were overflowing and bustling with fans as the Cubs' first home game of the National League Championship Series got underway Tuesday night.
But late in the game, the streets and bars around the field were relatively quiet as the L.A. Dodgers beat the Cub 6-1 and took a commanding 3-0 lead in the series.
"I don't think there's any chance" the Cubs will come back, said Jason Habel, of Lakeview, who was watching the game at Lucky Dorr bar. "It sucks."
Cubs fans congregated beneath the marquee at Wrigley Field on Tuesday before Game 3 of the NLCS. [DNAinfo/Jessica Cabe]
Earlier, as the game got underway, Cubs fans seemed determined to forget the two tough losses against the Dodgers over the weekend on the West Coast.
They gathered around the iconic marquee for selfies, high-fived one another in the streets and gathered around the big screen at the Park at Wrigley, which wasn't open during last year's World Series run.
"You can just feel the excitement and the energy," said Cheryl Fontanini, a Des Moines, Iowa, resident who has been a Cubs fan since she was 4 years old. "The atmosphere is incredible."
Tuesday marked Fontanini's first postseason game, and she and her family came to Chicago for just one night for the occasion. She said she had no doubt the Cubs would deliver.
"I'm totally confident," she said. "They did this last time, they're good. I'm not worried."
Fans also greeted the changes in Wrigleyville with excitement.
Fontanini was impressed by the major development projects near Wrigley Field, including the Hotel Zachary and the Park at Wrigley, which opened in April.
"I think it's absolutely amazing, and I love the hotel," she said. "I can't wait for it all to be done."
Kids play catch in the Park at Wrigley on Tuesday before Game 3 of the NLCS. [DNAinfo/Jessica Cabe]
When Cubs outfielder Kyle Schwarber cracked an early homerun to give the Cubs a 1-0 lead — and add to his playoff lore — fans were ecstatic.
"I love Schwarber. He was clutch last year, kind of superhuman, and he played way above where he should have given his lack of playing time," said James Doran, of Avondale. "And I thought that first inning home run was awesome. It showed that he's still got it."
Later, though, even as the Cubs went behind and eventually lost, he held out hope.
"I wouldn't count the Cubs out," Doran said. "They were down 3-1 in the world series last year. They were down to the Dodgers last year. I think the Cubs' offense doesn't seem to be rising to the occasion like they did, but there's still time."
Fans packed into Murphy's Bleachers in advance of Game 3 of the NLCS on Tuesday. [DNAinfo/Jessica Cabe]
The chalk wall of love is back. Fans have been writing messages on the north and east walls of Wrigley Field all postseason long. [DNAinfo/Jessica Cabe]