1987 World Series DVD: Game 1

I finally got my copy of the DVD set for Father’s Day (do I have the greatest son in the world or not?). This is my attempt at a review. The game itself was not particularly good, but I would guess that the game itself is not important to those who would buy this particular DVD set (myself included).

For what it’s worth, this was the game where the Twins scored seven runs in the fourth inning, including Dan Gladden’s grand slam, to eventually win 10-1. Here is my recap of the game from earlier in the year if you are interested. Some thoughts from the first World Series game to be played indoors:

-Al Micheals, Tim McCarver, and Jim Palmer had the call for ABC. I don’t particularly care for Micheals today, but in 1987 he wasn’t so bad. McCarver managed, so far in the series, to be less annoying than he is at present, and Palmer added a lot of insight that you just don’t get on national broadcasts today. Overall, the announcers were good. They weren’t Bob Costas/Tony Kubek good, but they didn’t really take away from the game, and they did their best to keep conversation interesting when the game was not.

-I remembered Tony Pena’s glasses but I didn’t remember the story behind them. Apparently, Pena’s numbers in 1987 were bad because he couldn’t see across the clubhouse, according to Palmer. He got the glasses just in time for the post season and, according to the announcers, it made all the difference in the world. He batted .381/.458/.476 in the NLCS and .409/.480/.455 in the World Series in a year when his line was .214/.281/.307 for the regular season. 1987 in an extremely poor year compared to Pena’s career numbers, which seem to back the story up. I have never hit a major league fastball, but I would imagine that hitting .214 is pretty good when you can’t see the pitcher.

-In the third inning, with Greg Gagne at bat and Dan Gladden on first, Joe Magrane threw to first nine consecutive times before he pitched the ball to Gagne. The best part is that Gladden actually stole second later in the inning.

-It took just four Magrane pitches for the Twins to load the bases in the fourth; it took six pitches for them to score their first two runs of the game.

-As the game went on, it became clear that Dave Phillips’ strike zone was growing with the Twins’ lead. I suppose that wouldn’t happen today thanks to Quest-tech.

-It was interesting that Tom Kelly kept Viola in as long as he did. With a nine run lead, and the desire to send his ace back out with short rest, he let him throw eight innings and 102 pitches. It’s not as if the bullpen needed rest, this was the Twins’ first game in five days. It all worked out pretty well, but still was a curious move. The announcers were even suggesting an inning for Berenguer and an inning for Reardon would be in order, but they didn’t say anything when Kelly stayed with Viola, then brought in Atherton for the ninth.

-I love watching the game without commercials. The official time of the game was 3:36, but thanks to the magic of DVD I saw every pitch in just over two hours.

I haven’t started watching game two yet, but I will post my thoughts when I get around to it. So far it has been fun if for no other reason to see a time capsule of what baseball was like in 1987.

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3 Responses to 1987 World Series DVD: Game 1

  1. Beau says:

    Ha, I just finished watching Game One Wednesday night, and I had all the same thoughts you did about the game. Palmer was excellent, and they did a good job of pointing out that Reardon actually hadn’t been all that fantastic. I was a little annoyed that they were using strictly batting average to evaluate from what side the switch hitters were better from (especially since some of them slugged better from the other side), but hey, that still goes on now.

    I can only imagine a game log with today’s blogosphere, ripping into Tom Kelly late in the game for not taking out Viola. I also loved seeing the 80’s hairdos and mannerisms again.

    I did watch the game live when I was seven years old, but didn’t remember anything about it other than the grand slam. Watching it again was such a trip. I’m watching the games while exercising, and it sure makes it go by fast!

  2. Scot says:

    Not included in my original thoughts, I was annoyed that Michaels et al were careful to make the point that Kelly should pull Viola early (and give Berenguer and Reardon an inning each), but said nothing when Kelly went the opposite route. Not even a “this is a surprising move”, just business as usual, as if they had never suggested that Viola should leave the game earlier.

  3. Beau says:

    Yeah, I thought that while watching as well.

    I also smirked when they told the story about the kids sneaking in with a camera and Kelly giving them an interview. Today the kids probably would be arrested and interrogated under suspiscion of terrorism.

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