If you weren’t fortunate enough to have caught Dodgers Team Historian Mark Langill on Episode 89 of the Blue Heaven Podcast, please do yourself a favor and take a listen. Throughout a fascinating hour, he talks about not only the great history of the franchise, but reminds all of us to be thankful for all of the moments – good, bad, or incredibly painful – this team has given us over the years, as they could just as easily never moved to California, and if they hadn’t, simply would not exist.
I for one, am grateful for the team all of the memorable moments the Dodgers provide us, as it means that I care. Two years ago this week, even after the heartbreak of the 2017 World Series, I still felt grateful enough to easily come up with five reasons why I am so grateful to be a fan of this organization…and not much has changed since then.
And so this year, as families across the US prepare for the annual upcoming Thanksgiving holiday, our Dodgers Nation family shares what we are most thankful for…as Dodgers fans and beyond.
Question # 1:
What are you most thankful for as a Dodgers fan?
Gail Johnson (@GJOH29):
I find it challenging to find the right words to adequately explain why I love baseball, and especially the Dodgers, the way I do. Every year around this time when I am missing the action of baseball season the most, even though my Canadian Thanksgiving was back in October, I am always reminded just how grateful and proud I am to be a fan of this organization, and for so many reasons.
If I had to narrow it down to one answer (besides “Clayton Kershaw’s very existence”), I would say “the people”. The Los Angeles Dodgers organization is full of outstanding individuals who provide us with thrills and special moments…on and off the field. This past summer, I penned a long overdue thank you letter to the organization outlining the many reasons I am grateful for this organization and all of the amazing people it has brought into my life. The Dodgers simply hold a giant part of my heart, and always will.
Tim Rogers (@SDDodger):
It is strange but this is tough. Baseball has been a part of my life when I played at the age of 5 in something called Indian Guides. When I was 8 I played Little League and got my first baseball cards. That is when I became a fan of the Dodgers. Combing through the articles and box scores in the Long Beach Press Telegram became a habit. My mom taught me how to calculate a batting average and I even went to my first game in September of 1973. Ever since, I have had a strong attachment to the Dodgers. Life brings many different experiences that would occupy my time but it was always great to check up on them.
It’s always been great to run into other Dodgers fans as it immediately bonds people. Like Henry Rollins speaks about when you unite at a concert despite many differences we unite as Dodgers fans. We live in the most divisive times that I can remember but we can all get together and have a blast with our Dodgers. I am thankful for the friendships that have been established. I am also thankful for the highs and lows that they bring us. It is just a game but the people we run into are all unique and interesting. I enjoy hearing all the differing opinions when there is a mutual respect.
So, thank you Dodgers and Dodgers Nation for all the great people I’ve met.
AJ Gonzalez (@AJontheguitar):
When someone asks why I’m a Dodger fan, I have quite the answer list. “The Dodgers are the team of Jackie Robinson. The team of Sandy Koufax. The team of Fernando Valenzuela. The Dodgers are an organization full of icons both for baseball reasons and reasons everyone should be proud of. The Dodgers uniform hasn’t changed much in years. It’s iconic. The Dodgers, are iconic. I’m thankful for that, and for an organization that has stood out.
Clint Pasillas (@realFRG):
As Gail pointed out at the start of this page, we sort of said it best on our Dodgers Nation podcast — I’m plainly thankful that the Dodgers even give us something to mad over. With that madness surly mixes in all the happiness and good times that come with having the best team in sports in our backyard.
Myself, along with Brook Smith, Gary Lee, and Doug McKain — our post-game host — recently took time to quickly share what we’re thankful for on Blue Heaven.
What are we thankful for #Dodgers fans?
— Blue Heaven (@BlueHeavenPod) November 27, 2019
Jokes aside, with Doug bringing up the “919 wins [the club] had this decade” and Brook adding that he’s thankful the front office doesn’t listen to the suggestions that Twitter GMs present, and myself thankful again to the Dodgers for giving us something to care for, all of us combined to make a fairly solid reason to be thankful.
Marshall Garvey (@MarshallGarvey):
First off, given the amount of negativity that often emanates from the Dodger fanbase (myself included!) I am so glad to have a moment to take stock of everything about this superb franchise worth celebrating.
First, I am thankful for their rich history, one most franchises would kill to have. The vaunted legends and championship teams that span from Brooklyn to Los Angeles, the consistent success since 1941, the voice of Vin Scully, and so on. Same for the timeless beauty of Dodger Stadium. It is heaven on earth, and I’m glad I get to share it with such a great fan base when I’m there.
I’m also grateful that my love of this team took me down the path that led me to writing for this very site. Being a member of DN during its rapid ascent has been something I wouldn’t trade for anything else. I’m glad I chose to stay.
And with the recent Astros news making us take a fresh look back at 2017, I want to take a moment to continue to show gratitude for the 2017 team. Not just for what they did for my life during that hellish year, but for the new light in which they can be seen.
Look, I get it: the growing reality that we were likely cheated out of a title does in fact make that whole thing worse. But look at it this way: If cheating was the only way the 2017 Dodgers could be stopped, that says a lot about them. Their stature will grow amidst this chaos. I’d vouch for them no matter what, but hey…it’s the little victories that count. And I’m thankful for every last one of them.
Clint Evans (@DiamondHoggers):
Wow, where to begin? First off, I have been to some beautiful places on earth. Honestly – and I say this with sincerity – Dodger Stadium is the most beautiful of those places. Then there are so many branches from the iconic place where they play half their games. I’m thankful for so many memories and Vin Scully’s voice, and then his passing of the torch to Joe Davis and Orel Hershiser. I like hearing the organ of Dieter Ruhle, it just puts a smile on my face while already doing my favorite thing in the world; watching a game. The Dodgers are able to boast a proud tradition with their head high – from their signature home white uniforms that need no fancy adjustment being the best uniform in sports to hosting Opening Day at home every year. Most of all, the Dodgers have given me a lot of comfort and an outlet to take solace in when I have had tough times in my life. They say ‘baseball is there when you need it most’. I could amend that to say ‘The Dodgers’ are there when you need them most, because for me they have been.
Finally, getting to watch a talent like a Cody Bellinger or a Walker Buehler nightly and weekly is something most people will only hope for as they root for their respective teams and prospects. Although they haven’t reached the ultimate goal for a long while, following and writing about Dodger baseball is living a charmed life.
Jason McClure (@Jmcclure83):
First a foremost, I have to state my gratefulness to the Dodgers organization for having kept Vin Scully on their broadcast team for as long as he was willing to do it. He is the reason I am the fan I am today. His ability to put you in a seat at the stadium while you are driving, working in your garage, or in the end when you COULDN’T watch it on TV, cannot be replicated. Hearing that the Dodgers won the World Series through the news on the radio in 1988 is how I became a fan, but it was his voice that grew my love and appreciation for the game.
Second, I have to say thank you to the Dodgers for being a constant in my life. Like a true friend, they’ve been there for me during the best, worst, and everything in between times. They’ve been a place to turn when I need a distraction, a bonding agent between new friends and colleagues, and because of the anchor they have in my life, they’ve even become a source of self-confidence. Thank you Dodgers.
It goes without saying that baseball and the Dodgers are a big part of our lives, but what are some of the other things you’ll be giving thanks for this weekend and beyond?
While true that baseball is life in a lot of ways, we wouldn’t be able to enjoy it the way we do without a healthy, peaceful existence outside of Dodgers World…and so, for the good health and happiness I have fought so hard to achieve in the last few years, I am especially thankful. I also have an incredible support system of friends that I’ve known for decades – my chosen family – who are there for me and accept me for who I am. To paraphrase the great Eddie Vedder, I am indeed a lucky woman who can count on both hands the ones I love.
I am grateful for continued learning. There are people in my life that help me keep growing whether personally or professionally. My wife has been great throughout all my DodgersNation work. My sons keep providing me joy as they are now young men. I am so thankful to still have my parents. My full-time job offers me flexibility that most can’t get so that I can go up to Dodger Stadium and Rancho Cucamonga to see the Quakes. For some reason God has been good to me.
My wife, older son and myself saw the Midway movie last week. When I walked out I was both blown away and thankful for the bravery that was exhibited in WW2 but in other wars. I never served but I could not be more thankful for those that have so many acts of bravery to defend our country and our allies.
My Dodgers Nation family. I love being apart of this group of people who make great content and care about the brand we represent. I’m grateful for honing my skills as a writer and contributing to the social media life of Dodgers Nation. It’s brought out skills I knew I had, but had never used.
I’m also most thankful for my family. My wife Stacy is always supportive of all I do at Dodgers Nation, even as a Phillies fan. She encourages me to be apart of this and I literally wouldn’t be able to do it without her. Also my daughter Ellie, who is my entire world!
So much! I’m thankful for everything: that I train at the best boxing gym in the Sacramento area (Jose Morales Boxing Academy), the forthcoming publication of my first book (The Hidden History of Sacramento Baseball), the good health of my family and my supportive friends, the fact that I do what I love for living (writing history books), and continued good health for myself.
Also, I’ll take a moment to express thanks to everyone that reads my articles. In addition to being a part of Dodgers Nation, I’m just so glad to have a part in the enormous world of this franchise. Whether you enjoy my work or not, I appreciate your reading and feedback.
My health, my friends, my family (and many friends I consider family). Beyond all the obvious things, just all that I have that I don’t necessarily deserve.
I know I am extremely blessed. For instance: found my way here didn’t I? Life is like baseball, and it cycles in many ways. There will be challenges but each day is a new day and nine new innings more less. I try to appreciate every day, because it’s definitely a gift.
And without getting so deep, I appreciate our own FRG’s humor and hitting me up with slack jokes late night when I am writing about things like Dino Ebel’s dog or Hello Kitty Night. It’s been wonderful writing for our Dave Roberts as I look back from a year ago to now. So thanks buddy for being a good teammate.
#1 My wife, Cortney.
Sure she’s vocal about her crushes on Clayton Kershaw, baseball pants in general, and Jason Momoa, but she’s also my #1 fan, my rock, and the heart and soul of our house. She’s an incredible mother, homemaker, artist, and homeschool teacher to our 3 wonderful children. She is the definition of what grind and hustle look like. Without knowing it, she motivates me to be better every day.
#2 Family & Friends.
I’ve leaned heavily on my family the past year, figuratively and emotionally. Thank you to my Mom for helping my family the way you did when we needed it, to my Dad for being my best friend/confidant and for taking me on a roadtrip I’ll truly never forget, to my sisters for also being good examples of grind and hustle, to my kids for understanding when “Daddy has to work on the computer” (writing), and to my friends that always support me without judgment.
Thank you to my place of employment for putting a roof over my family’s head and food on our table. Not only have they provided for me to have and support a family, but for the past 15 years they’ve surrounded me with great people, teachers, and opportunities.
#4 Dodgers Nation. Thank you to DN for giving me a platform where I can share my Dodger related thoughts, ideas, and theories. Thank you to all my fellow writers for teaching me more about the game, fandom, and writing. Furthermore, thanks for all the fun.
#5 Dodger Fans
Thank YOU for reading and giving feedback on the aforementioned items in #4. I appreciate you all.
Happy Thanksgiving and go Dodgers!