Los Angeles Dodgers

When Josh Reddick hit a fly ball to left field and Andre Ethier squeezed it for the third out, I glanced over at the clock. It read 1:06 a.m. Nearing the five-hour mark, Game 5 of the 2017 World Series was tied 12-12 and headed for extra innings.

“What time is it?” my wife mumbled.

“One-oh-six,” I whispered.

“What’s the score?” she asked.

“12-12,” I replied. “They are going into extra innings. This is the wildest game I have ever seen.”

“It sounds like it,” her voice trailed off.

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One year ago on this day Rich Hill and the Los Angeles Dodgers shutout the Chicago Cubs, 6-0, to take a 2-1 lead in the National league Championship series. Five days later the Cubs snapped their historic 71-year drought, beating the Dodgers in Game 7 to return to the World Series for the first time.

But, what a difference a year makes. As you wake up to the news that — once again — the Cubs have their backs squarely against the famed ivy covering the Wrigley Field outfield walls, it is clear the Cubs are not the same team from a year ago.

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I have had a most rare vision. I have had a dream, past the wit of man to say what dream it was. – Shakespeare

Vin Scully received the Icon Award at the annual ESPY’s ceremony this week.

I grew up listening to Scully, mostly on nationally televised games. There was no internet, or cable, or MLB app when I was a teenager (Wow! I really am getting old). But, I digress.

Despite my lack of “connectivity” I was still able to witness some of Scully’s greatest calls live. The Catch by Dwight Clark, Kirk Gibson’s home run in the 1988 World Series and, my personal favorite: “Little roller. Behind the bag! It gets through Buckner. Here comes Knight and the Mets win it …”

Goosebumps, still.

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We all make mistakes. The problem with making a mistake if you’re Bill Buckner or Scott Norwood or even Fred Claire is, it happens on the world stage for all to see.

Coincidentally, Claire’s miscues from the general manager’s chair have intersected at some point in history, with current or former members of the New York Mets. It’s like six degrees of separation, but not.

With the Winter Meetings come and gone and the New Year here, once again the ghosts of winters past will pay a visit to Claire.

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