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Stew Belittles Giants; A's Roll in Game 1

Scrapbook Memories celebrates the 20th anniversary of Oakland's last World Series triumph. Today, Game 1 of the 1989 Fall Classic.

When I informed baseballgirl that I would take over front-page duties today so she could thoroughly enjoy her birthday, she thanked me in one breath, and noted in the next:

"Nothing good happens on my birthday though...see 1992, 2001, and 2006."

To which I replied, "au contraire, mujer." Or something like that.

It was twenty years ago today...


{67MARQUEZ checks in smelling of beer and victory, his mullet a beautiful mess}

When I walked into Mom's house after tonight's game, the first thing that my brother John (no stranger to World Series contests, he) said to me was, "That was boring."

Thank you sir, and may I have three more.

Yeah, so maybe an episode of that new sitcom Doogie Howser, M.D. contains more drama than tonight's Series opener, but this isn't about putting on a Reggiesque show. No! It's about annihilation. It's about domination. It's about sticking it to the stuck-ups across the Bay.

And I have to believe that after last October's Dodger debacle the A's feel the exact same way. Except maybe that last part. They don't care who occupies the opposite dugout. They just know that team has no chance. The fact that it's the Giants is mere icing.  (For me, that is).

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Man, it was chilly tonight. Windy and overcast. Weather you'd expect over there. But that wasn't the only thing that was askew. As the starting lineups were announced, I had to laugh at the irony of playing a team so colossaly named. The A's stood taller in every way. In the never-ending David-Goliath comparisons, the San Franciscans were the ones with the slingshot. Lined up next to the Bashers, they didn't seem Giant at all. And it wasn't just the size of our players, it was their aura, their attitude.

The A's have that look. A business-like approach with a side of swagger, like "Hey, we're just here to pick up what we left behind last year and while we're doing it, we're going to bash and strut, and basically make life miserable for you."

Even the players' wives have caught on:

According to Herb Caen's column in the San Francisco Chronicle, Jose Canseco's wife, Esther, was spotted buying five leather dresses for the World Series. When the salesman said, "Only five?" Esther replied, "That's all I'll need."

Half of the Marquez Eight was in attendance tonight, me and Rose in 127, my youngest sister Tricia one section to the left and a few rows in front, and my brother Abel directly above me in 227.

There was a touching tribute to the late commissioner A. Bartlett Giamatti, who died September 1 of a massive heart attack, just eight days after banning Pete Rose from baseball. It's been that kind of year, folks.

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Luckily we have the A's and Dave Stewart to make it all better. Stew was terrific. Just terrific. And he picked an awesome time to pitch his first shutout of the season. Meanwhile it didn't take long for me to tap into my inner hatred for the Giants. I'll let Rose tell it:

"There was a family of Giants' fans behind us, a young couple and their two kids. When Carney Lansford came up in the first inning, the little girl, who was maybe seven or eight, started singing, ‘Carney, Warney. Carney, Warney.' You can see Don getting annoyed. I was too, but I wasn't going to say anything to the kid. Just then Carney got a hit, and Don turned to her and yelled, ‘Yeah! Carney Warney!' He is always embarrassing me. I think the family left after that. Would you want to sit near this maniac?"

I blame Dad.

The Giants were blaming Tony Phillips for their 1-0 deficit after his single brought home Dave Henderson in the second. Hendu had reached base via a walk and went to third on a one-out knock by Terry Steinbach. With Steiny now at third, Walt Weiss hit a chopper towards first and Will Clark threw home. Our catcher slid through the tag, jarring the ball loose from their catcher, and we had a 2-0 lead. Don't blink because now it's 3-0 as Rickey's single plates Phillips.

I love beating the Giants.

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Leading off the bottom of the third, San Francisco starter Scott Garrelts tried to sneak a low pitch by low-ball hitting Dave Parker. Parker deposited the offering into the right-field seats, before taking his wag-and-trot around the bases. Which gave (most of the) 49,385 fans plenty of time to be bashful.  More Rose:

"Don left me hanging as he bashed everyone but me, even running up the stairs to air-bash Abel, who was in the second deck. When he got back to me all I got was a light bash, and a 'sorry.'"

Maybe it would have been better had Rose not talked to reporters after the game.


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In the fourth, Walt Weiss followed Parker's lead with a lead-off home run of his own to make it 5-0. Or four more than the A's needed this lovely October evening.  Weiss, unaccustomed to tater trots (he had three dingers during the regular season), rushed around the bases.

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Meanwhile Dave Stewart was on cruise control.  Of the six men to reach base against him (five hits, one walk), a third of them came in the ninth. Will Clark and Kevin Mitchell opened the inning with back-to-back singles, and moved up ninety feet on a passed ball (as Matt Williams struck out). Stew got Ernie Riles on strikes, too (his sixth of the night), then induced a ground ball to third from Candy Maldonado to secure a sweet shutout.

Yep, this was a snorefest alright. Even pitching coach Dave Duncan agreed:

"Good pitching is boring. Great pitching is really boring."

And may we yawn all the way to the title.