PHOENIX — The Dodgers are going all in this season to commemorate the 30th anniversary of the last team in franchise history to win a World Series, and now fans can sit in the landing spot of the most famous home run in Dodgers history.
Kirk Gibson will be front and center during the first weekend of the season, throwing out the ceremonial first pitch on opening day then having his bobblehead giveaway during the second game of the year. But something that will be around all season is the introduction of the “Kirk Gibson seat,” which is where his home run landed after winning Game 1 of the 1988 World Series.
“Every time I walk into Dodger Stadium I always look at the seat where the ball landed. I personally call it Seat 88,” Gibson said.
The seat in question is Section 302, Row D, Seat 1, though like Gibson the Dodgers have renumbered that seat 88. There are a few oddities, mostly that the seat itself is a seat by loose definition, but rather is actually the end of a bench row. The seat will be painted blue and signed by Gibson, which makes it stand out.
The seat can only be purchased in a pair, and while in many cases the seat right next to it is available that might not always be the case. The pair of seats in the all-you-can-eat pavilion in right field, which normally run for $45 each, plus a commemorative t-shirt are being sold for $300 total, with $200 going to the Kirk Gibson Foundation to raise money to combat Parkinson’s Disease, which Gibson was diagnosed with in 2015.
“I’m on a mission to do what I can to help the many people who are find a cure for the disease, trying to help people understand what they can do to remain fairly symptom-free,” Gibson said. “Any funds I can raise to help speed efforts by many other organizations for good positive markers, I’m very interested in that. The Dodgers have stepped up in a huge fashion to join forces with me and my foundation while celebrating the 30th anniversary of the home run.”
Gibson said when he was with the Tigers the players were sick of watching highlights of the 1968 World Series, Detroit’s last championship before Gibson and his teammates won it all in 1984. So he understands if there is frustration among Dodgers, who have now gone 29 years without winning a World Series, falling one game short in 2017.
“I told this to Matt Kemp when he was younger. I know they’re tired of watching the home run,” Gibson said. “I encouraged him to top it. I hope somebody tops it and the Dodgers win a World Series.”
But even 30 years later, from a personal standpoint, Gibson hasn’t tired of seeing video of his home run.
“Sometimes I get shy about it because it has been played over and over again but at the same time it gives me goosebumps, shit,” Gibson said. “That was a great moment, and I’m proud to be a part of it. That was just me doing my part on a great team, adding a contribution.”