This is my third straight watch party featuring a Dodgers loss. We’ll try to get on the winning track next week, but for now let’s look back at a memorable game from 27 years ago.
The Florida Marlins were a brand new franchise, and the Dodgers were in Miami to face them in their very first game, on April 5, 1993. You had Orel Hershiser on the mound for the Dodgers and old friend Charlie Hough starting for the Marlins, two of the most successful draft picks in Dodgers history, especially relevant with the 2020 draft coming next week.
|SS||Offerman (S)||CF||Pose (L)|
|CF||Butler (L)||2B||Barberie (S)|
|RF||Strawberry (L)||RF||Felix (S)|
This was the third opening day start for Hershiser, who would also start the Dodgers’ first game in 1994. Hough, 45, was in his 24th major league season, and would pitch one more year after this. It’s remarkable that Hough started only 16 games in his 10½ seasons with the Dodgers, yet still ended up starting 440 games in his career.
This was the first game of Mike Piazza’s first full season, after his cup of coffee the previous September. He batted seventh, behind among other folks, the “Triple Threat” outfield of Brett Butler, Darryl Strawberry, and Eric Davis, two thirds of which never really worked out for Los Angeles. Strawberry had 14 hits in 100 at-bats for the Dodgers in 1993, and would never play for them again.
This was in some ways a passing of the guard at catcher in the National League. Benito Santiago, All-Star starter in three of the previous for seasons, started behind the plate for the Marlins. Piazza made the All-Star team as a reserve in his rookie season, then was elected the NL starter for nine years in a row.
Some classic 1990s names were in the starting lineups, including Orestes Destrade, Junior Felix, Bret Barberie, and Jose Offerman. Jeff Conine went 4-for-4 in this game (spoiler alert!) and became “Mr. Marlin.” Florida had four switch-hitters in their lineup.
I lost the game! Got hit around!— Orel Hershiser (@OrelHershiser) June 7, 2020
But the worst thing is I gave up a hit to Charlie and still hear about it today from him! But love him...
The next day my locker was filled with autograph requests on Marlins inaugural game balls and programs as losing pitcher! LOL https://t.co/3W1661daz0
Another great reason to watch: all that teal.
We’ll watch this one on YouTube, beginning at 4 p.m. PT.