Classic card of the week
Mike Scioscia, 1989 Topps
Does anybody remember the movie Field of Dreams? It was a movie about baseball starring the guy from Thirtysomething and also the guy from Waterworld and also Darth Vadar. It is about ghosts, too. No? You should Netflix it.
Anyway, there’s a rather poignant scene where the main character, what’s-his-face, finally gets to meet his dad, who is a ghost. They never really had a great relationship when both were humans because when the son was playing Major League Baseball, and he hit his first triple, his dad wasn’t there to see it. This caused a lot of resentment, as you can imagine, because every son who grows up to become a major leaguer dreams of the day he will hit his first triple and his dad will be there, cheering him on from the stands.
In one of the last scenes in the movie, before the dramatic explosion, the son reenacts his first triple, but this time ghost dad is there, and when the son reaches third base, his dad is there to hug him. It is very emotional. I cried. Oh, ummm, I forgot—SPOILER ALERT!
Luckily for Mike Scioscia, he did not have to build a baseball field in a cornfield and alienate his neighbors and skeptical brother-in-law in order to recapture the love of his father.
Mike’s first major league Triple
The first Triple is so crucial to the father-son bond that it is always capitalized. I did not capitalize it earlier because I forgot.
occurred at Philadelphia, 5-3-80 while his father was in attendance.
What an amazing story! I am tearing up again. Let’s move on before I break down completely.
Here’s what I really want to know—how did Mike Scioscia become the Dodgers everyday catcher? Was it hard work? Scrappiness? Grittiness? Hustle? Throwbackedness? Something else? Let’s ask Wikipedia.
When I made Mike the No. 1 catcher, the writers came to me and said, "[Competing catcher] Steve Yeager said you made Scioscia the No. 1 catcher because he's Italian." I said, "That's a lie. I made him the No. 1 catcher because I'm Italian."
Tommy Lasorda, everybody! Playing on the old stereotype that all Italians … ummm, are able to uh, name their catcher whoever they darn please? And if that catcher happens to also be Italian, pure coincidence! Ha, ha … what? I don’t know. Pretty safe to say that no favoritism was involved here though. Move along everybody. You too, Steve Yeager, with your lack of animated hand gestures and distaste for olives. You disgust me.
Did you know?
When Tommy Lasorda drafted Mike Piazza in the 62nd round of the 1988 MLB Draft, he was mistakenly under the impression that Piazza was German and not the son of a longtime family friend.