Happy Birthday John!

In honor of John's 29th birthday, we present 29 of John's favorite sports memories. Hopefully John's friends & family will get a kick out of this.

  1. Junior & Senior Year...swept Wasco. Last of the 6 games (one tournament game and two league games each season) was an overtime win on senior night in 1999.
  2. October 20, 1988...watched the clinching game 5 of World Series with David at Grandma & Grandpa's house. Enduring images: Hershiser striking out Tony Phillips, Rick Dempsey wearing only his hat underneath his mask coming out to celebrate.
  3. August 21, 1991...Darryl Strawberry hits a grand slam & a 3-run homerun in the same game. Fifteen years later this would be known as "pulling a Cody Ross." Unquestionably Strawberry's peak as a Dodger. Witnessed these events from the front row behind the Dodger dugout at Dodger Stadium. AC Green sat a couple sections away, walked right by once and was strikingly tall.
  4. June 28, 1993...Dodgers vs. Giants. Dave Hansen's walk-off grand slam beats the Giants. Mike Piazza's heroics on last day of regular season are remembered more than this random midseason game in terms of knocking the Giants out of the playoffs that year. Watched this in person from the loge level.
  5. January 1989...49ers beat the Bengals in Super Bowl XXIII.
  6. January 1995...49ers beat Cowboys in NFC championship game (The peak of John's 49er fandom).
  7. October 4, 2008...Dodgers beat Cubs to win Division Series. Sat in field-level seats for Game 3.
  8. October 8, 2009...Dodgers beat Cardinals in Game 2 of Division Series. Mark Loretta's walk-off hit. (John didn't stop believin' from the top deck).
  9. 2009...Henry attends 2 Dodger games (July 22nd...Manny bobblehead night & Manny grand slam. September 19th...Ronnie Belliard grand slam). Henry begins going around calling himself "the grand slam baby" and has to be lectured by John on being humble with things like that.
  10. March 4, 1994...Shafter beats Wasco for the Valley Championship in basketball. Game was played at Centennial (those were the days of a neutral site Valley Championship games, though not a centralized neutral site as they do it now at Selland Arena, so the higher-seeded team would just choose a location close by). John was in 7th grade.
  11. October 2, 2004...Steve Finley walk-off grand slam to beat the Giants and clinch the Division for the Dodgers. Was not present. Watched in Portland with Aaron W.
  12. October 9, 2004...Jose Lima shuts out the Cardinals in Game 3 of the Division Series. John was there in the far reaches of the blue reserved level.
  13. April 18, 2004...Watched the Dodgers beat the Giants in San Francisco to finish a 3-game sweep.
  14. 1986...Dodgers vs. Mets. Bill Madlock hits a foul ball which was caught by Bob in first row, second deck of Dodger Stadium.
  15. 2002..."Attended" World Series Game 5 at San Francisco. Watched through the fence with Dana D.
  16. July 8, 2009...Henry's first professional baseball game. Fresno Grizzlies vs. Sacramento River Cats.
  17. July 20, 2005...Honeymoon baseball game. Anaheim vs. Oakland (@ Anaheim).
  18. July 15, 2006...1st anniversary baseball game. Braves vs. Padres (@ San Diego). A guy drove by and gave us a free parking pass.
  19. July 17, 2007...Red Sox vs. Royals. First & only game (so far) at Fenway Park in Boston. Took a tour of Fenway Park the day before. (Katie's memory...John constantly sneaking away from the tour to look at stadium oddities like seats facing away from the field & stadium seating with almost no leg room).
  20. July 19, 2007...Yankees vs. Blue Jays. Only lifetime game at that version of Yankee Stadium.
  21. December 2000...attended Duke vs. Standford. Stanford beats Duke with a buzzer beater in a sold out arena. (Great basketball game, but not a fan of either team).
  22. March 2009...Central Section Division I boys championship game at Selland Arena. Edison vs. Central. Edison beat Central with a buzzer beater. (Another great game, but not a fan of either team).
  23. March Madness 2000-2003. Watched games in a variety of different dorm rooms. (Skipped class to do so). Took cafeteria food to aforementioned dorm rooms. Organized the campus brack pool. Lots of yelling & screaming at the TV & co-spectators. Winning & losing small sums of money.
  24. Monday Night Football & The NCAA championship basketball game at the Wiens' 1993-2003.
  25. Date unkown (late 1980's)...Dodgers vs. Giants @ Candlestick Park with Grandpa Wiebe. Night game. Wandering around Candlestick parking lot unable to find car.
  26. Various dates (late 1980's)...Listening to Dodger games on the radio with the lights out well past bedtime, trying to keep the volume low enough to remain undetected by parents. Then blowing cover with cheering when something good would happen. Or being caught halway down the hallway trying to see the television replay in the living room.
  27. Winter 2008...extended lifetime Varsity winning streak over Wasco by 2 games...beating them as Varsity coach.
  28. March 2002-2004...Spring Training baseball.
  29. October 15, 1988 Game 1 of the World Series.

No comments: