Marty Lurie Talks San Francisco Giants Baseball

After 1988 All bets are off…

Major League Baseball

says that Pete Rose

is not in the Hall of Fame

because he placed bets

on baseball games.

As simple as that.

I wonder If Pete lost

any money in the

1988 World Series ?

By Amaury Pi-GonzálezAfter the 1988 World Series surprise, nothing

should surprises us anymore in the Postseason.

The Oakland A’S won 104 games that 1988

seasons(most since moving to Oakland in

1968) and second most in franchise history

since winning 116 in 1931 as the Philadelphia

Athletics. Yet, the A’S lost the World Series

to the Dodgers, four games to one.

And yes, I was there, in Oakland and in

Los Angeles.

With the Wild Card structure in baseball

things are very different. It is tougher to

make it all the way and win the World

Series. In 1997 the Florida Marlins advanced

as a Wild Card team and won the World

Series over Cleveland four games to three.

Most recently the New York Mets won the

National League in 2000,as a wild card team but lost the World

Series to the New York Yankees four games

to one. It is not any “disgrace”to make it

as the Wild Card. So, for the four Giants

fans that read this site: do not discourage.

Prior to the Wild Card in baseball, things would happen . Things like in 1993 when

in the National League West, the

San Francisco Giants finished the season

with 103 victories but lost the Western

Division to the Atlanta Braves who won

104. Any team than wins 100 or more

games should be able to advance into

the Playoffs. But the total amount of

wins during a regular season means

“nada”in the Postseason.

Ask the 1954 Cleveland Indians who won

111 games to win the American League

and were swept by the New York Giants

in the World Series that year. Of course

in those days the teams won their respective

leagues and then went directly to the

World Series. In today’s game, sometimes

(like 2001)you could be playing in

November !

The key to a winning Postseason is:

#1 Health: Your team has to be healthy

in order to perform. #2 Mental fortitude:

Your team has to believe in themselves,

be confident,but not over confident and

too relaxed. #3 Managing: You need a

good manager that understand that the

Postseason is a complete different season.

Still in 1988 the Athletics had a healthy

team,a good mental attitude and a very

good manager and they only won one

of five games in the World Series. A man

by the name of Orel Hershiser(who

won the Cy Young in the National League

that year) pitched like a “man possesed

by the devil”and a guy by the name of

Gibson, Kirk Gibson(who won the National

League MVP)but could not even walk,not

to mention run, hit one of the greatest

homeruns in World Series history.

And the word here is “history”because

after that momentous home run in the

bottom of the ninth inning of great reliever

Dennis Eckersley, the A’S were doomed.

That was the first game of the Series and

the A’S never really recovered from Gibson’s


For those that like to predict during this

2002 season. If we go just by pitching,

we must put Atlanta vs. Oakland in the

2002 World Series. However, there are

some scary lineups out there. Look at

the St Louis Cardinals for example:


and company. The Cardinals, who survived

a lot of misery this season could find

themselves in the World Series.

The World Champion Diamondbacks lost

Luis González for the remainder of the

year, they’re without “super sub”Craig

Counsell. Needless to say, Schilling and

Johnson have to pitch almost perfect

to win or guys like Erubiel Durazo most

get hot and win a few games with the bat.

The Anaheim Angels ran out of ammo at the

end of the season, but they could be

regrouping for a Postseason attack and

they have the pitching and a very agressive

hitting team. The Oakland Athletics need

to have their offense working and their

middle-relief in order to be successful in

the Postseason. What good is for Zito,

Mulder or Hudson to throw 7 or

8 great innings and then Mecir or Tam

give it away ? The A’S offense is also

very much “up and down”,they better be

“up”in the Postseason.

Benito Santiago and Reggie Sanders, or

who ever is going to hit behind Bonds

better be ready, since Bonds who walked

around 200 times in the regular season

is sure to get walked many times again

in the Postseason. Guys like David Bell

(20 home runs)and Rich Aurilia could be

very important bats, not to mention the

pitching rotation. Liván Hernández is the

first pitcher to lead his respective league

in total games lost (16)and be in the

Playoffs. The schizophrenic Liván Hernandez

should not start in the Divisional Series,

but he could be a big factor in relief and if

the Giants advance to the next level, who

knows. Liván has thrown three complete

game shutouts this year.

The New York Yankees just got Mariano

Rivera back in the bullpen, they have like six

guys in that lineup with 90 or more RBI, they

have the greatest offense in the American

League and one of the best in baseball.

Their pitching is usually solid in the Playoffs

with veterans like Clemens,El Duque,Wells,

Pettitte,Mussina, those are a very

good arms. The Yankees are deep all over

and are always a tough team. This season

for the 16th season in their storied franchise

they won 100 or more games. In New York

talk shows are debating “who is going

to face the Yankees in the World Series?

And that was since the middle of September !

And then….the Minnesota Twins. With all

respect to the A’S 20-game winning streak,

Barry Bonds fifth MVP and Schilling-Johnson

tandem, in my book this is “the”story in

baseball. Remember, there were up for

contraction, they were given up for dead

with no pulse, no stadium in the future,

a dying franchise, litigation in court, controversy with a very wealthy owner.

A small market with just a couple of

million dollars generated in Television

rights revenue.

The Minnesota Twins are in the playoffs,

heck, they won their division going away !!

There are some new names in baseball in

the Twin Cities, how about Tori Hunter,

Christian Guzmán,Doug Mientkiewicz,

A.J Pierzynski,Jaque Jones plus veteran

pitchers Rick Reed, Brad Radke and Eddie

Guardado. These Twins are a very dangerous

team at home on that hard surface at the

Metrodome they can beat anybody on any

given day and they’re the perennial underdogs

of this playoff. If you are a betting man/women,the Twins are always underdogs

and you can make some money with them !

However, if they do not win at least

you get the satisfaction of doing one of the most American things: ‘root for’ the underdog!

Isn’t that what they do each year in

Boston and Chicago ? And those are considered among the best fans in baseball.

There you have it. I have no idea who is going

to be playing in the World Series, but I’ve

got a feeling these Playoffs are going to

be very exciting, specially if the A’S meet

the Yankees again. But hold all your bets,

and before you say this or that is a “sure thing”think of the 1988 World Series.

I will be working the NLCS and World Series

for the LBC Radio Network again. I would not

mind a Bay Area World Series, but I think

that is the longest shot of all. So, have a

good Postseason, may your team do well.




Amaury Pi-González is on his eight season as

the Spanish Play by Play announcer for the

San Francisco Giants, previously for 17 seasons

same with Oakland A’S.

Amaury has also called the last two Caribbean

World Series of baseball in English for the

Fox Sports International Network.

His involvement with baseball runs deep as

he is also V.P of the Hispanic Heritage Baseball

Museum, a non-profit founded in San Francisco

in 1999.His articles are also available on as well as on

various bilingual publications.

He appears regularly with the Sports Radio

guys, a sportstalk show that airs in the

Bay Area on Saturday at KEST radio in

San Francisco.


1 Anonymous { 09.26.02 at 7:04 pm }

More than anything else, I think the A’s lost in ’88 because they were overconfident. After Canseco’s mammoth slam off the CF camera in Game 1, I think the A’s thought the Series was over. The Eck said it well on ESPN’s “WS Memorable Moments” show, “We were all wondering how badly we were gonna beat the Dodgers in the WS.” They had a chance to beat Orel in Game 1, but the “I don’t believe what I just saw” HR, the most storybook shot in WS history, did them in. That still kills me.

2 Anonymous { 09.27.02 at 1:34 pm }

Leave it to Amaury to bring the A’s down just when they clinch the division. Thanks.

3 Anonymous { 09.27.02 at 7:32 pm }

I know. Amaury wants us all to root for the Twins because they’re the underdogs. He’s so transparent. he should give it a rest. Marty always posts him to get our blood boiling.

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