The surging Cleveland Indians rolled over the Chicago White Sox on Thursday night to pick up their 15th consecutive victory, cementing their status as a primary World Series contender.
The streak has been huge for the Indians' postseason hopes. As the reigning American League champions, they faced high expectations heading into this season, but a slow start left them with a 48-45 record through July 19, just a half-game ahead of the Minnesota Twins. Now, thanks to six weeks of sterling play, Cleveland owns an 11-game advantage in the American League Central, one of the largest division leads in baseball.
But while the Indians' improved performance has done a lot to enhance their position in the standings, that's not the only cause for celebration in the area. Earlier this season, local window company Universal Windows Direct offered an intriguing promotion: any purchases made in the month of July would be refunded in full if the Indians notched a 15-game winning streak before the end of the season.
The prospect of the Indians getting it done seemed far-fetched at the time – this is MLB's first 15-game winning streak since 2002, after all – but now hundreds of customers will be expecting a check in the mail. All told, more than $1.7 million will rebated, according to Darren Rovell of ESPN.
But while Universal Windows Direct is a local firm, they won't be financially impacted by the Indians' rare streak. The company's CEO, William Barr, said he spent $75,000 on insurance to cover the $1.7 million.
"I already paid for the policy," he said before Thursday's game. "I just hope they win now."
Considering the publicity that the promotion has brought, $75,000 is a small price to pay. One customer, Lorianne Sevic, spent $34,000 on new windows, siding, doors and gutters, but she's expecting her rebate soon.
"I never believed it was going to happen, so I only started paying attention yesterday," she said.
The Indians have fulfilled their end of Universal Windows Direct's bargain, but don't expect them to relent any time soon. Their next game is set for Friday against the Baltimore Orioles.
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