"Almost Opening Day" #5 Favorite Game You've Ever Attended
The easy answer here is Game 7 of the 2016 World Series. Whatever the outcome, you knew you'd see something worth telling your grandkids about. But I think my favorite game might have actually been Game 3 of that series, a nail-biter of a 1-0 win for Cleveland.
Josh Tomlin pitched his guts out into the fifth, Coco Crisp gave the Indians the lead in the seventh, and with the game taking place at Wrigley Field, the magnitude of the series became abundantly clear.
Randomly, a late-July game the Indians had against Chicago in 2017. Tied in the ninth, bases loaded for the Tribe and Brandon Guyer at the plate. I turned to my friend and said “they’re about to win this game on a go ahead hit-by-pitch.” The very next offering pegged Guyer in the elbow.
Easily my favorite MLB game is the Tyler Naquin walk-off inside-the-park HR vs. Toronto in August 2016. My daughter and I had moved down to the right field section for the 9 inning and watched as Roberto Osuna blew the save first by giving up the tying home run to Jose Ramirez to the section we were standing behind.
And then we watched the majestic drama of Naquin’s hit play out almost in theatrical slow-motion, from tracking the ball off the bat, to Melvin Upton Jr.’s slipping, to Tyler’s rounding third. I remember saying out loud when Upton fell, “he’s going to try for home!”
Afterward, the Blue Jay fans were so understanding about the whole affair:: “What can you do about it?” “Hey, it was a great ending. “At least we get a fireworks show!”
The 2019 MLB All-Star game was special to me for a number of reasons. It was one of the first games I was able to work after being diagnosed with stage four lymphoma blood cancer, and anytime you're able to work a special event like the All-Star game it's memorable.
Then a few innings into the game they had the 'Stand Up for Cancer' signs that people did for Indians pitcher Carlos Carrasco. What I didn't know what was a number of my friends in the media used their signs for me - starting with Zack Meisel of The Athletic, and then a number of other media starting doing it and tweeting out at me their sign.
It was truly a special night for so many reasons, and it felt great to be loved by my media family.
In KC. Clev was KILLING the Royals. It was like batting practice. Manny had a Grand Slam, then came up AGAIN in the same inning, 2 out. Shwon (?) Dunston tried to dink one over 2 just to get the bases loaded for Manny. He flied out and YES Manny hit a homer leading off the next inning.
The runner-up was in Minn. Justice and Thome hit MONSTER homers. They hit the giant canvas baseball card replicas that hung WAY up and out over right field in the MetroDome. Another “batting practice” game.
The best game I ever attended live was Sep. 14, 2017, the day Cleveland extended its win streak to a record 22-straight. During a slog of a season where the team’s division title was a foregone conclusion for some time, things got interesting for three weeks, all of a sudden.
Not only was the outcome beneficial for writing a story, but the actual game was also a lot of fun. Francisco Lindor had to tie things up in the 9, José Ramírez turned in an electrifying and savvy hustle-double in the 10, and the new guy, Jay Bruce, knocked him in to win.
Tie - Pine Tar Game and David Wells' perfect game
Snowpening Day against Mike Hargrove and the Seattle Marinersin 2007.