Today is Opening Day 2008. Not the same for me this year. It used to be one of Ricky's favorite days. Win or lose, I would hear from him. Indians just scored three runs in the 8th with a bases loaded double from Casey Blake. Ricky would have loved that. Score now Indians 10, White Sox 7.
We went to the home opener in 1982. It had snowed for several days and was cold this Saturday at Cleveland Municipal Stadium. It was a stadium that had a special air about it. You could smell it from a ways back. But it did have one thing. Major League Baseball.
It was the Cleveland Indians versus the Texas Rangers. The Indians were a very woeful team in those days. Some seasons they had decent pitching and no hitting. Other seasons they had fairly good hitting and no pitching. Front office would usually trade one for another. Those days the Indians were the farm team for the rest of baseball.
Texas won that game that day 8-3. Thank you baseball-almanac.com. The thing I do remember in the game was Buddy Bell hit two home runs that day. I also remember the fans were, for the most part, very boorish. As I had mentioned before, it had been snowing in the days preceding this ball game. The fans started getting bored and threw snowballs in the stands. I was sitting beneath a ramp going to the upper deck. Someone dropped a very cold cup of beer. I know it was cold because it hit me.
Sports talk show host Pete Franklin got on the fans the following week for relentlessly getting on Indians first baseman Andre Thornton. They were booing Thornton and chanting "We want Joe" meaning Joe Charboneau, already washed up 1980 American League Rookie of the Year.
Yeah, the tribe lost the game. I rode the rapid back to my parent's house cold, wet, and smelling of beer. But we were there for opening day.
Click here for box score of 1982 Opening Day, Cleveland Indians vs Texas Rangers.
Oh, yeah. Final score for 2008 Opening Day-Cleveland Indians 10, Chicago White Sox 8..