With the Magic Number down to 6, it is possible that the Dodgers could clinch by Sunday at the earliest. And I know all you fellow Dodgers fans would like nothing more than to have our long time rivals watch us celebrate, although for this to happen we would have to either take 3 of 4 from the hated ones ( Not beyond possible ) while the Snakes would have to be swept in all 3 by the Rockies at home, or sweep all 4 from the hated ones ( Also not beyond possible) and the Snakes would have to lose 2 of 3 to the Rockies at Chase Field. While words can’t quite describe that feeling of celebrating in front of our rivals, though they are long out of contention for 2013, the last thing they would want is for us to rub salt into their wounds in an otherwise nightmarish season for the hated ones. So yeah, we all know they will be going all out this weekend to prevent a celebration of the NL West in their presence. So yeah, even in an off year, they still have something to play for if not the role of spoiler, which, is how I, as an 8 year old kid in 1982, got introduced to this great rivalry…..
While Joe Morgan, who was recently honored by the Reds this weekend ( Against the Dodgers no less….), will be forever linked to The Big Red Machine of the 70’s, it was he who gave me my first taste of this storied rivalry on October 3rd, 1982. It was his 3 run home run in the last of the 7th off Terry Forster that would prevent us from tying the Atlanta Braves for the division lead that would have forced a 1 game playoff the next day at Dodger Stadium ( Which my uncle had bought tickets to. Also, yes, at that time, the Atlanta Braves, led by Joe Torre, we’re in the NL West ). It would also my first taste of the BEAT L.A. chant. Yeah, I am aware that the chant was started at Boston Garden earlier that year, but over the years, that chant has never been yelled with such ferver than through the fog across the Golden Gate…..
Fast forward to 1983, the 25th Anniversary of the Dodgers in this great city of L.A. since their move from Brooklyn. In what should have been a year of transition, the first year minus Cey and Garvey, the Dodgers and Braves would find themselves in another dogfight for the NL West crown. With the Dodgers leading the west by 3 games with 3 to play on the season’s final weekend, yup, you guessed it, it would be the hated one’s in town….
While clinching the NL West in 1983 may not have had the same drama that the previous years events had, it sure had to feel great to have the hated ones watch our Boys in Blue celebrate. Heck, even mother nature couldn’t ruin our night to party !!!! Oh yeah, in that 1983 clip, how ’bout that little known pitcher who came in for Fernando ? Yup, Orel Hershiser. Those two would make quite a tandem eventually…. As for the reserves who came in from the 6th inning on, Cecil Espy and Sid Bream. Well, those two would take part in another epic playoff battle 9 years later… ( Notice how much slimmer Sid Bream was in 1983 ? Now if it was the Sid Bream of ’83 that would have beat Barry Bonds throw in 1992…. )
So there are my memories. 30 years since ’83 huh ? I hope you enjoyed the clips posted, especially the opening theme from the ’83 one, featuring Earth Wind and Fire’s Rock That. ( I could picture Vin Scully yelling IT’S TIME FOR DODGER BASEBALL to that….) If you didn’t watch them in their entirety, it’s all good. I mean, that’s almost 6 hours of timeless memories right there. And i’m most certainly sure that you all have your own favorite Dodgers/Giants memories as well . So, am I alone in wanting the Giants watch us celebrate this Sunday, even if the odds are against it ?