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A look back on David Ross' amazing journey to the 'Dancing with the Stars' finale

While you were watching the thrilling Cubs-Indians World Series last fall, would the phrase "David Ross is in the 'Dancing with the Stars' finale" have made any sense whatsoever?
The answer to the above question is "no," but that's the world we live in now. On Monday, the 2016 Cubs' elder statesman/team grandfather will go head-to-head with the last two contestants (Normani Kordei and Rashad Jennings) on the dance competition show for a shot at the ultimate title (ABC, 8/7 CT). 

How did we get here? It's honestly pretty remarkable, so much so that Ross couldn't even put it into words after he advanced through the semifinals last week:

The DWTS finals will take place over two nights, as this kind of drama can't be contained into one evening.
It's been a wild ride for Grandpa Rossy over the past couple of weeks as he continued advancing and wowing the judges (and fans at home) with his efforts alongside dancing partner Lindsay Arnold. #TeamLadyAndTheGramp were also in-stadium entertainment at the Friendly Confines during a rain delay:

Upon closer consideration, though, maybe this wasn't really a surprise after all. Maybe Ross' flashy, sequined Cubs jersey worn on Week 1 was a message that he was in it to win it:

Ross later traded his Cubs uniform for an inspired 1980s-themed getup, which was quite a spectacle:

He also proved that he'd make a picture-perfect "old guy" in a boy band -- and danced an impressive tango to the sounds of an *NSYNC classic:

So why should you or anybody tuning into the finale cast a vote for Ross to be crowned the ultimate champion? Well, there are a number of reasons.
For one, he's a very good sport in terms of having what it takes to get on TV in front of millions to do ... this:

Two, he can cut a mean rug for a traditional slow dance set to, what else, "Forever Young":

Third, he's a shrewd self-promoter -- a skill you absolutely need in order to succeed in this capacity:

And he's also full of self-deprecating jokes (the best kind, really):

But despite his incredible run on top of the world, Ross has remained as humble as ever:

More than anything else, beyond the fun Twitter posts and his general cheerfulness, Ross has improved a lot as a dancer. Back in Week 1, he probably wouldn't have been able to nail a routine as complex as this one from Week 7:

The non-professional dancer aspect of DWTS is all about progress, and there's no denying David Ross' growth as a dancer and entertainer as the season has rolled along.
Besides, wouldn't winning "Dancing With the Stars" just be the perfect cap to the storybook, stuff-of-dreams year Ross has had?
We'll find out soon.