Tag Archives: Don’t Worry Be Happy

Moments After Moments…1988…What This World Series Means To Me

CHICAGO, IL - OCTOBER 19:  The Los Angeles Dodgers celebrate defeating the Chicago Cubs 11-1 in game five of the National League Championship Series at Wrigley Field on October 19, 2017 in Chicago, Illinois. The Dodgers advance to the 2017 World Series.  (Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images)Stacy Revere/Getty Images

For the first time since 1988, we can all finally say it…

“WE’RE GOING TO THE WORLD SERIES” !!!

CHICAGO, IL - OCTOBER 19:  The Los Angeles Dodgers pose after defeating the Chicago Cubs 11-1 in game five of the National League Championship Series at Wrigley Field on October 19, 2017 in Chicago, Illinois. The Dodgers advance to the 2017 World Series.  Jamie Squire/Getty Images

Leading Off…Game 1…Gibson Makes An Appearance

Oh yeah, Debbie Gibson with the national anthem. Thank you Debbie for not making the anthem a 5 minute affair. Something magical about Gibson and Game 1 of the 1988 World Series…

It’s been 29 years since we’ve seen our Boys In Blue in the big dance. They will be facing off against an old NL West foe, the Houston Astros…

1988…A Special Time for L.A. Sports Fans

Aside from the magical season from the Boys in Blue, 4 months prior, L.A. celebrated another championship…

Other happenings from 1988…

Image result for ronald reagan

1988 would mark the last year of the Reagan administration

Who Framed Roger Rabbit was the box office topper…

Bobby McFerrin’s words to us…” Dont Worry, Be Happy”

Drei’s Favorite 5 Moments Since ’88

In the 29 years that we’ve waited, there have been lots of moments after moments, both joyful and heartbreaking. My 5 favorites that I witnessed at The Ravine, since ’88…

5. Back to Back NL West Titles

The 2nd of 5 consecutive division titles would be clinched against the hated ones. Though a magical night, it would be the hated one’s with the last laugh in October…

4. ’08 NLDS Clincher Against the Cubs

The Chicago Cubs, baseball’s best regular season team in 2008 with 97 wins, entered the NLDS as heavy favorites over The Blue. The Blue would not only knock off the Cubbies, they would sweep them in 3 straight en route to their first NLCS appearance in 20 years

3. 100 Wins and Not a Wild Scene in The Bay

In the final season of the pre Wild Card era when only division champions went to the playoffs, the 103 win San Francisco Giants needed to win on the regular season’s final game to force a one-game playoff against the Braves for the NL West. The Blue, having had their party ruined in 1951, 1962, 1982 and 1991 by the hated ones, we’re more than glad to return the favor. For the Giants, in Barry Bonds first season in the dreaded Halloween colors, 103 Wins and Not a Wild Scene In The Bay

2. 2009 NLDS, Game 2, A Happy Holliday at Chavez Ravine

Down to their last out and having the series tied at one, James Loney would hit a fly ball to Matt Holliday in what appeared to be the final out of the game. 

Holliday’s error would prolong the inning, and 2 batters later, Ronnie Belliard would tie the game with an RBI single. After a walk to Russel Martin to load the bases, Mark Loretta would come off the bench and deliver…

Loretta’s game winner would send the Dodgers up 2-0 to St. Louis. The Dodgers would complete the sweep 2 nights later en route to an NLCS rematch with the Phillies.

1. Wherever It Lands…The Finley Slam, October 2, 2004

Down 3-0 heading to the home 9th, the Jints we’re 3 outs away from cutting the NL West deficit to a single game heading to the regular season finale. The Jints ( Yes I said it…) bp would implode, and after tying the game at 3, Steve Finley, acquired in late July in a 3 team trade that sent Paul Lo Duca to the Marlins, would step up to the plate…

Finley’s walk-off slam would give the Blue the 2004 NL West title. It would be their first division flag since 1995 and their first post-season appearance since ’96. The Blue would make 8 other post season appearances since, finally leading to the 2017 World Series !!!

What This World Series Means For Me ?

I’ve done this blog for 12 seasons. I’ve gone to countless games both at home and on the road, experienced many a thrill and many a heartbreak. For those of you who we’re around in ’88 you couldn’t have imagined the next time The Blue would be in the World Series you would be long past your undergrad years, have some salt on top assuming you aint got a dome, be into our 6th different administration, one that seems to do a good job of dividing this country…

In spite of our differences, after 29 years of waiting and many a new generation of Dodgers fans, our Boys in Blue are FINALLY back ! They’ve united a city like I haven’t seen united in quite some time. Yes, we’ve had the Lakers bring us 5 titles during the Shaq-Kobe era and the Kings have brought us a couple of Stanley Cups. But there’s just something about The Blue, a team with a deep rich history, that makes the wait all the more special. 

As for me, in 1988, I was a freshman in San Gabriel High School. I’m sure many of you have been recalling where you we’re in ’88 and the events that we’re happening in the world, in pop culture, or even in your personal life. The passage of time does that to us. Especially when we look back upon a time that brought us plenty of joy, often times making us yearn for nostalgia. 

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Me and my little bro, Daniel. I was 14, he was 3 in ’88. One of my memories of Game One was watching with him and my dad in our living room, listening to our dad read 101 Dalmations during the game. “C’mon dad ! It’s the World Series !!!” 

For the lil’ bro, this World Series is one he and plenty of Dodgers fans born in the mid 80s and after can actually enjoy, rather than saying they won one in their lifetime…

81 88

For me, I’ve experienced two in my lifetime, ’81 as a 7 year old kid still learning baseball and being taught by my uncles to hate Reggie Jackson and the Yankees. The Yankees would be the first team I would be taught to hate. ’88 I experienced as an early teen, viewing our chances of winning the World Series, as good ol’ Vin would say, ” Viewing it with our hearts…” Because really, if not for being a naive teenage Dodger fan, if I saw it from a realistic and objective viewpoint, there really could have been no way we stood a chance against the A’s and their Bash Brothers duo of Jose Conseco and Mark McGuire. 

But it was just that, HEART. The ’88 Dodgers had plenty of it….

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As I write this on the eve of Game 1, words just can’t really express what this means to me. Over the years I often said The Blue will get there before I turn 50. As I said earlier, I’ve enjoyed 2 World Series titles, one as a kid, one as a teen, now as an adult less than 7 years from mid-life and 29 white hairs later (OK, more than 29, but who’s counting?)

This is just a small sampling of memories form ’88 on that I’d like to share. Fellow Dodgers fans, young and forever young, enjoy this moment. It’s been 29 years. We’re 4 wins away from coming completely full circle. LETS GO DODGERS !!!

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That Bittersweet Feeling…

It’s the ending that’s become all too familiar with us. 4 straight division titles…Yet so close to the Grand Prize… Only the St. Louis Cardinals have more regular season wins during that span than the Dodgers. But…(Of course whenever the word “But” is used, more often than not is it used in a not so positive context) during that 4 year span in which they have averaged 92 wins each season the closest the Blue has come toward the trip to The Fall Classic is 2 games…Twice.

Winning 4 straight division titles is no small feat, especially in baseball. 

But…In a town where style overshadows substance…In a town starved for baseball’s grand prize that has now eluded us 28 years and counting…Close isn’t good enough. 

Is it fair? It depends who you ask I guess. 4 straight division titles. Have we become the Buffalo Bills of baseball? Not quite. At least the Bills made it to 4 straight Super Bowls. Have we become the new Atlanta Braves of the 90s and early 2000s? Not quite yet. The Braves won 14 consecutive division titles with one World Title. Has our fanbase reached a point that soon attendance at October baseball games not played against some AL Champion will resemble that of past Braves or even Yankees? Only time will tell. Was this season a disappointment? Again, it depends on who you ask. I’m willing to go out on a limb and say most Dodger fans would say no.

As previously stated, winning 4 straight division titles is no small feat. At the end of the day though, a team’s feats are measure by whose flashing the bling. A lot of progress was made this past season by first year manager Dave Roberts. With all the injuries throughout the lineup and in particular to our starting rotation the fact Roberts was able to guide The Blue as far as he did was more than enough to earn him Sporting News 2016 NL Manager of the Year

David Crane — Staff Photographer
Dodger’s manager Dave Roberts, left, was named Sporting News’ 2016 National League Manager of the Year on Monday. Dave Roberts-Photo by David Crane

The accolades don’t stop there either…

dodgers_corey-seager_robert-gauthier-la-times Corey Seager: Photo by Robert Gauthier, L.A. Times

As expected, Corey Seager was named 2016 Sporting News NL Rookie of the Year

Questions will arise once again during the off-season. It’s been 28 years now since Chavez Ravine has hosted a Fall Classic. Our country has gone through 2 Bush’s and by the time our Boys in Blue win their next Fall Classic it just may be through a second Clinton. 

Of the 4 division winners from 2013,talent wise, I’d say the 2014 had the most. As for heart, I without a doubt can honestly say I felt this years team displayed the most, especially during the stretch without our Ace, Kid K. Most thought our Boys in Blue would fold. As A-Gon said during the LCS, it was Us Against The World. The Cubs we’re just the better team. They weren’t the best team in the regular season by accident. 

As a baseball fan, I wish the Cubs well in the World Series. I also wish Cleveland well. One of those two teams will break a long drought. 

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Well, this all but concludes my 10 year anniversary bringing the tales. The same amount of time for the longest tenured Dodger, yup, you all know it…Dre couldn’t do much this season. As we and even he knows, father time is starting to creep up on him. As much as we’d all for Dre to get that bling wearing the Dodger Blue we all know that he could be elsewhere come spring training, a phrase we’ve all heard countless times during the last several years. 

9th Inning…Don’t Worry, Be Happy

Here’s a little flashback from 1988…

And you just wanted to relax on some fictional resort along the Florida Keys…With some tropical “Cocktail”…To the rhythm of a steel drum band…

 

The Ride That Ended All Too Soon

KERSHAW_ADAMS Just like that, the ride was over…

What Drei Said Before The Series…

 ” The Boys in Blue head to the post-season on a roll, having won 8 of their last 10.  Everything seems to be clicking at this moment for the Blue.  If their is one concern I have heading into the post-season, it is the status of our bullpen .  It is no secret that our bullpen has been inconsistent, particularly our middle relievers.  The status of Hyun-Jin Ryu is a minor concern for me but in a Best of 5 the Dodgers may be able to get away with a 3 man rotation of Kershaw, Greinke and Haren. “

As I was looking back on my pre-season NL Picks ,  it was both my fear and hope that the Dodgers could survive on a 3 man rotation.  Hyun-Jin Ryu did make it back on the hill and pitched an admirable 6 innings in game 3.  However, Dan Haren, who after a mid-season slump, finished strong but was nowhere to be seen in the post-season.

” St. Louis has had a long history of post-season success and like it or not , are one of only two teams to have success against Kershaw .  However, Kershaw just seems to get better each year ( Is that even possible ) , having won his 4th straight ERA title en route to a possible MVP season.  In a short 5 game series, anything can happen.  Will Game 1 between two game tested battlers between Adam Wainwright and Clayton Kershaw set the tone ?  Runs will probably be at a premium here.  However, with a deeper lineup and most everyone coming back healthy, I gotta like our chances to advance … “

Why St. Louis has had continued success against our Cy Young Award winner is beyond anyone’s guess.  Aside from Game 1, runs we’re at a premium, however, even with the momentum of a strong finish and a healthy lineup, the Dodgers, sans Matt Kemp’s solo shot in Game 2, just could not come up with the timely hits, and the Dodger playoff blues against St. Louis continues . 

“Dodger Blues in Mizzou… 

1985 NLCS  0-3, Lost in 6 games

2004 NLDS 0-2, Lost in 4

2009 NLDS 1-0, Won in 3

2013 NLCS 0-3, Lost in 6

That, my friends, adds up to an overall mark of 1-8 in the post-season in The Show Me State.  Now on the positive side.  The Dodgers had MLB’s best road record this season at 49-32, so being in a hostile environment will should not phase them.  One of these stats has to give.  Let’s all hope for the latter.”

Make that, 1-10, dating back to 1985, when they  Meet In St. Louis during post-season …

“Does Hyun-Jin Ryu feel no effects of his recent injury and pitch deep into the game through at least 7 ?  How much confidence does Mattingly have in his bullpen ?”

I think by now you guys know the answer to that last question .

Plenty of Blame to Go Around

So now is the time everyone starts playing the blame game.  Truth be told, there is enough blame to be passed around .  Was this a successful season ?  It would be hard to say it was a total fail with 94 wins and a 2nd consecutive NL West Title in the books.  Compete success ?  Hardly.  When $240 million is spent on player salary, it’s expected by everyone that the season would go well beyond 166 games ( Yes folks, that’s 162 and the 4 playoff games that ended before we all had a chance to blink ) .  So today, we can only wonder, how and why did it all end so quickly ?

Much of the blame will go down to two things.  Don Mattingly, and the bullpen.  OK, 3 things.  Let’s add GM Ned Coletti’s inability to acquire a setup man that may have been the difference between me writing my post post-season post, or giving my insight to the NLCS.  It will be easy to point the finger at Don Mattingly as well, it seems as if that has been a yearly tradition around these parts.  Truth is, he was only playing the hand he was dealt.  Also, who could have seen our soon to be 3 time Cy Young Award winner Clayton Kershaw coming apart at the seems in the 7th inning, not once, but twice ?  Want some other daunting numbers ?  Clayton Kershaw is the first Dodgers pitcher to lose 4 consecutive post-season games , bringing his all-time  post-season record to 1-5.  Those 4 consecutive post-season losses ? You guessed it.  All to the St. Louis Cardinals.  So Cy K isn’t quite clutch in October.  YET ( Yes folks, I did that in all CAPS for a reason ) . 

As for Mattingly’s decision making ?  The only glaring one I really could question is using Scott Elbert in the 7th inning of Game 3 .  Nothing against Scotty, but he had only pitched a little over 4 innings in the bigs all season while practically rehabbing all season.  In one of the most crucial moments of the season with a trip to the NLCS in the balance, and we go with a setup man who has pitched , again, a mere 4 plus innings.  On the flip side, that just tells you how much confidence Donnie has in that bullpen.  $240 million spent yet the only one reliable down the stretch was our closer, Kenley Jansen, who mad a mere 1 appearance this post-season.

At this moment, rumors are flying.  The big one of course, is the status of GM Ned Coletti .  Will he be around at this time next week ?  Also, who stays and who goes ?  Do the Dodgers retool at shortstop and let Hanley test the free-agent waters ?  Brian Wilson has already indicated he will $9.5 million player option for 2015Why wouldn’t he ?  With his 2-4 , 4.66 ERA stat lines, it would be hard for him to test the open market. 

So now begins the descent into a long L.A. Winter.  One that won’t be so dry this time around.  L.A. and it’s proud Dodgers fans are thirsty for a championship.  It’s been 26 years now.  Ronald Reagan was on his last term the last time a World Championship was celebrated around The Ravine.  Bobby McFerrin’s Don’t Worry Be Happy was the chart topper.  Yes, it’s been that long folks.  For those of you born after 1988, I feel your pain. 

I will stop short of calling this 2014 season a disappointment.  It had it’s moments.  It gave us 2 no hitters from Josh Beckett and of course Clayton Kershaw .  This past season also gave us the emergence of Dee Gordon.  This season also gave us the resurgence of Matt Kemp, who I believe will come back stronger next season.  I’ll even go so far as to say 30/30 could come back, provided he stays healthy, and that could be a big question.  We also saw Adrian Gonzalez lead the NL in RBI’s.  There was plenty of highlights to remember in this past 2014 season.  Unfortunately, none coming in a double digit day in October. 

wpid-img_6757157709345.jpeg A bit early for this Thank You card don’t you all think ? 

I do want to thank you the readers for your continued following of Good Dre in L.A. .  I always do my best to provide you with as much of my Dodger knowledge as well as other fun and at times light-hearted posts from my perspective.  I also want to give a shout-out to the Dodgers-lowdown as well for their tireless work and for helping me reach out to you the readers. 

So our off-season begins now.  That does not mean I will stop posting.  Just not as often.  I also do plan on posting other topics non-baseball related at well in a feature I will be calling, Beyond The Yard .  Hopefully, you will all continue to follow my posts and of course I will also be giving some off-season thoughts as well.  It was a memorable 2014 season, especially for me on a personal not.  Unfortunately, this joyride of a season ended all to sudden, and Just Like That… It’s Over

wpid-img_17082643137116.jpeg Hey Dre, Drei says it’s been a fun 9 season’s seeing you in the Dodger Blue !  Does Drei see Dre back in 2015 ?

 

An Afternoon In and Around The Ravine, 5/10/2014 vs SF Giants

How Dre spent his Saturday in and around The Ravine…

Pregame Dining

RoastBeefPastramiandCheese While the new food options inside The Ravine have received some rave reviews from local foodies , I still enjoy a good pregame meal before heading to the old ballpark.

RoastBeefPastramiandCheese The Roast Beef, Pastrami and Cheese, from nearby Eastside Market Italian Deli . Come hungry ! Only open until 4 during the week, 2 on Saturdays and closed Sundays so if you’re heading to a Saturday or weekday matinee, this is the perfect stop for you hungry Dodger fans .

EastsideMarket

DodgerStadimPhotoConstruction While at Eastside Market Deli, you may also want to check out this old photo of Dodger Stadium being constructed sometime in, i’m guessing 1960.

And now that I’ve finished my meal, how ’bout walking to the park from the deli. Along the way, as we pass by the LAFD Frank Hotchkin Memorial Training Center, we stop to pay tribute to the fallen victims of 9/11

10358102_626075097485439_150557814_n This beam is one of the beams that fell from the World Trade Center. It stands outside the LAFD as a tribute to the fallen victims

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Inside The Ravine….

ITFDB The ever so popular phrase heard many a time from Vin Scully….

MURAL

ME_TWC Coming to you live from under the Left Field Pavillion, ” IT’S TIME FOR DODGER BASEBALL !!! ” Good afternoon, to the 30% of you Dodger fans out there who are fortunate enough to see today’s telecast….

beatsbydre Beats By Dre…. OK, not quite. I’ll leave that to Adam

josh_adam Josh doing some pregame DJ work with Adam

dennispowel With former Dodger Dennis Powell

1988 Last time we got one of these, I was a high school freshman, and this topped the charts…

greinke Greinke doing some long toss

retirednumbers The retired numbers on the LF Stadium Club façade. 23 minutes before gametime….

The Lineups

For the hated ones…
sflineup

And The Boys In Blue…
ladlineup

Of course any day at the ballpark is always a fun day. It’s always more fun when the home team wins , and Matt Kemp delivers one of these…

After the game, we we’re treated to an Old-Timers game. A couple of personal favorite moments for me was yelling DARRYL once again to Darryl Strawberry and seeing Dusty Baker donning the Dodger Blue once again after all these years !!! Photos coming to you soon.

And so that was my Saturday afternoon In and Around The Ravine.