Any way you slice it, 25 years is a long time; one quarter of a century to be precise. And while much has happened in the last 25 years – three wars, the advent of smartphones, the creation of My Space, Twitter, Facebook, texting (heck, even blogging) which brought with them an entirely new language (“r u on ur way 2 *$ [Starbucks] yet?” “No run n L8, C U there lol” – and so on), there are quite a few things that haven’t happened in the last 25 years as well – like putting another man on the moon or (uggh!) the Dodgers appearing in a World Series.
It seems crazy being at Dodger Stadium chatting with complete strangers sitting around me who share in my passion for the Dodgers who weren’t even born when Kirk Gibson hit his historic and epic home run in Game-1 of the 1988 World Series. Man, talk about making a guy feel old.
The point here, of course, is that we as Dodger fans have had enough; it’s time for the Dodgers to return to the dominance that they enjoyed back in the 60s and again in the 80s. And even though we all know that the boatload of money that new Dodgers ownership has spent over the past eight months doesn’t necessarily guarantee a return trip to the Fall Classic (which non-Dodger media-types have made a point to shove down our throats almost daily – especially in San Francisco), it has certainly given loyal Dodger fans a ray of hope; and the chances of the Dodgers returning to the World Series are far greater now than at any other time in the past quarter century.
In looking ahead to the 2013 season, it is difficult for Dodger fans not to feel optimistic, even a bit giddy. However, to accomplish that quantum leap into the realm of 2013 World Series Champions, it is a good idea for Dodger fans to take a look back to the last time that the Dodgers appeared in a World Series (which, of course, they won) to get a true understanding of exactly what it takes to become World Champions; a look back at the miracle men of that 1988 Dodgers team.
Although the exact date has yet to be determined, long-time journalist and former DodgerTalk Radio co-host Josh Suchon will soon be releasing a new book appropriately titled ‘Miracle Men’ which details the “improbable” and “impossible” (as Vin Scully called it) 1988 season for the World Champion Dodgers.
In the book, Suchon interviews hundreds of players, coaches, broadcasters and fans to give readers a nostalgic look back to that memorable and historic 1988 championship season – a season that nearly saw World Series hero and National League MVP Kirk Gibson quit even before the season started, the conclusion of Don Sutton’s brilliant Hall of Fame career, and the incredible 46-day stretch in which Orel Hershiser set a new consecutive scoreless innings record (besting yet another former Dodger Hall of Famer – Don Drysdale) that hasn’t been equaled since and probably never will. Miracle Men also highlights unlikely playoff heroes Mike Scioscia, Mickey Hatcher, and Mike Davis and encapsulates the sheer excitement that surrounded the Dodgers and the entire city of Los Angeles during the summer and fall of 1988.
Suchon also shares his own personal memories of the 1988 World Series when, as a 15-year-old die-hard Oakland As fan, had a little run-in (so to speak) with eventual World Series MVP Orel Hershiser who, ironically, provides a spirited introduction to the book.
Here again, the exact release date of Miracle Men has yet to be determined, but this is clearly going to be a “must read” book for every true Dodger fan, young and old. Fans interested in pre-ordering the book can do so at Amazon.com with a guarantee that the book will be shipped on the day that it is released.
* * * * * * * *
UPDATE January 3, 2013 at 9:10 AM:
According to Josh, the projected release date of Miracle Men is April 1, 2013 – Opening Day.
UPDATE January 3, 2013 at 6:15 PM:
Josh received the final proofs of Miracle Men in the mail today. I believe that the next step is off to the printer and binder.