It was on this night 25 years ago that a 15 year old RobbyT went to the greatest game I have ever seen in my life, Game 3 of the 1984 World Series. My brother and I pitched together the money we'd made from cutting grass that summer and sent in for tickets the day it was announced in the paper that they were going on sale. A couple of weeks later we'd scored four tickets to Game 3 of the ALCS and four tickets to Game A of the World Series. (Which would've been Game 1 had the Cubs just beat the Padres, but alas, it wasn't meant to be....)
I still remember October 12, 1984 like it was yesterday. I could hardly sit through school that day I was so excited. I remember us parking on one of the side streets in the Corktown neighborhood and the huge crowd of people lining up outside the stadium. It's an overused cliché by announcers, but for the first time I understood what they meant by "the electricity in the stadium." It truly was electric.
I took my little cheap ass Kodak 110 camera to the game, but we were so far away I couldn't get any good pics. The only decent one I got was before the game when Sparky, Dick Williams, and the umpires were walking around going over the ground rules of Tiger Stadium.
I remember screaming at the top of my lungs as Marty Castillo's HR sailed over the left field wall. I also remember Chet Lemon making a catch off of a Terry Kennedy shot right at the warning track in dead center that would have been a HR in any other park in baseball. We sat about 10 rows back.
Oddly, my most vivid memory to this day is from the ride home, when the news came on the radio at the top of the hour with the broadcast that the Tigers had beaten the Padres 5-2 to take a two games to one lead in the 1984 World Series. I didn't know what surreal meant when I was 15, but when I learned what it meant, I knew I had experienced it in that moment.
Hard to believe it's been 25 years. That was such a special summer in my life. Ah, what I wouldn't give to be 15 for one more summer.
Bless You Boys.