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Dodgers Twitter Watch Party: The 1988 Kirk Gibson Game

In a year that has already been so improbable…a fun distraction.



For this fan, Dodgers baseball is so much more than the game in the field; it’s the community and the connection with people from all walks of life who all share a passion for the team.

And like everyone else, while the world is on pause, I have been missing that connection more than words can say.

I was reminded just how much I rely on the daily routine of interacting with the Dodgers community when friend to all Dodgers fans (and founder of the D. Mountain Jersey Time Share) Todd Munson suggested that we all gather virtually at 7:30pm Pacific time this past Tuesday night to watch Game 1 of the 1988 World Series together. All we had to do was be sure to hit play in the game – already for viewing on the MLB Vault YouTube channel – at the same time, and follow along on Twitter as we would typically do on any night during the regular season.

Once I knew this was scheduled to happen, even while the world as we know it got stranger and stranger, it became something to look forward to, an event to plan my day around. I even anticipated staying up past 1am again. It was exciting. We even created our own hashtag: #Dodgers88.

I asked Todd how he came up with the idea. His response is too original and entertaining not to share in its entirety:

The idea for a group watch party for the World Series game came from my other favorite team, the Nebraska Cornhuskers. The Dodgers and Huskers are my teams, as in they’re my only teams and if you’ve ever met a Husker fan, you know we exist on a higher plane than other fans even though the last 20 years have been miserable.

Despite the misery, I have a separate Twitter account, @bigred_fury, and companion Husker blog that I run during football season and over the weekend, my buddies @HuskGuys live tweeted the 1998 Orange Bowl. As you may recall, Nebraska won their fifth Natty in that game with current head coach Scott Frost playing QB. They recruited me and a few others to tweet along and it was a lot of fun. So much fun that I had a feeling Dodger Twitter would love it.

At the risk of sounding blasphemous, Husker Twitter is not quite at the level of Dodger Twitter so I was not surprised when so many Dodger fans immediately got the idea and joined the party.

That was the first time I’d watched the ’88 game from start to finish since. I’ve seen the short version on SportsNet and have watched Gibson’s at-bat more times than I can count but none of that compared to the anguish and drama of watching every pitch. And Dodger Twitter made it that much more exciting. It was so fun to see everyone’s reactions and commentary. It really made it feel like we were all in it together.

By Canseco’s grand slam, I pretty much forgot I was watching a 32-year-old game and was yelling at the TV in mid-season form. It was such a treat to hear Vin call the game and our cat Willard even joined me on the couch watch. The only time he ever does that is when Vin is calling a game, so I’m sure he was wondering why that voice was suddenly back in the house. If you’ve ever tried explaining the concept of retirement to a cat, trust me when I say it’s a lost cause. As much as we all love Joe and Orel, Willard has yet to get onboard.”

And so for 3 glorious (and commercial free) hours, as we watched and interacted on Twitter, the world felt right again.

One of the group’s members, Angie M (@4Ev3rblue) was immediately designated as the 1988 version of Fraudman Twitter, “FraudClaire Twitter”, and tweeted as though the game and series were over and the end was nigh.

It was also impossible to resist taking any jab possible at the Astros, and/or Jose Canseco:

We enjoyed the commentary provided by a much younger (but still charming as ever) Vin Scully:

To some it felt as though we were watching the game for the first time:

And of course, the moment that became an instant classic:

And finally, the night ended with one of many funny and entertaining Twitter moments we hope to get back to very soon:

Miss you all, Dodgers Twitter. Even Fraudman.

What are we watching next?

NEXT: Players Send a Message to Dodgers Nation

Written by Gail Johnson

Biggest Dodgers fan north of the border, living about 3,500 miles from my beloved Boys In Blue, in Moncton, NB, Canada. I think Dodger Stadium is the happiest place on Earth. I'll catch up on my sleep in the off-season.

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