Ann and I are regularly asked about our love of baseball and the Indians. We’re big fans who came by it naturally. She was always an Indians fan, but I grew up rooting on The Big Red Machine.
I spent many a night honing my love of radio and baseball in my room with a transistor set with Marty & Joe, and one of the best teams ever built.
But when we got cable TV, I also became an Indians fan. In Columbus, we got WUAB-TV on cable. That’s when Joe Tait got my Tribe broadcast attention because the Reds weren’t on TV too much in the capital city. So I had the Reds on Radio and Indians on TV. Heck, who didn’t love watching “The Human Rain Delay!”
My father was the biggest baseball fan I have ever met. He read baseball encyclopedias year round. He would talk about some of the most obscure games in history. He could always find a game on his radio. He was Mr. Baseball to me. And he was a die hard Reds fan, so much, that our first color TV was bought because the Reds won the pennant and the World Series was going to be broadcast!
Back to Ann and I. After two years of friendship, on Friday July 28, 1989, we had our first “official” date. It was at a Cleveland Indians doubleheader against the Boston Red Sox at Municipal Stadium. Roger Clemens pitched the opener. The Tribe swept the Sox to go 51-50 on the season. That night, we watched not only Clemens, but also Albert Belle, Wade Boggs, Jim Rice, Mike Greenwell, Joe Carter, Tom Candiotti, Dwight Evans, Richie Gedman, and Doug Jones. They all played in the 6 hours we watched. Those players represent about 50 All Star appearances!
Today, almost 29 years later, Ann and I watched Kody Clemens, The Rocket’s son and top draft pick of the Tigers, hit a homer in the NCAA Super Regional for Texas. The Longhorns won to force a deciding game 3 tomorrow for a berth into the College World Series. By the way, going to Omaha is on our Bucket List!
So, if you ever wondered if we’re legit baseball fans, know the answer is, “Yes!”