I loved Dave Stewart, Carney Lansford, Dave Henderson, and Dennis Eckersley. And Rickey, when he got there.
I was... seven? Yeah, it was 1988, so I would've been seven. My parents didn't care about sports until I made them, but they tell me that winning was <em>very important</em> to me, and the A's seemed the better bet for me to see a win at my OMGOMGmyfirstreallivegame and for them thus to avoid a sullen li'l WTAWTAM on the drive back to Sacramento. I was so stoked to go to this game, I reconsidered basic loyalties. I remember standing at the toilet (you do some srs thinking in there, even on tip-toes) thinking "Hey! Why am I a Giants fan? The Giants are in the <em>National</em> League, and the A's are in the <em>American</em> League. I'm an <em>American</em>, so I should cheer for the A's. Such bright colors!"
LOLme. I didn't know what 'national' meant, apparently. (Oh, and I'm sure this had nothing to do with the 1987 NLCS being VEWY FWUSTWATING for certain six-year-old Sacramentans.) So I jumped ship, and off we went to a scheduled double-header against the Twins. (Not sure about my folks' logic here, BTW. The defending World Series champs?)
We were just settling into our seats when Dan Gladden whacked the first pitch Curt Young threw for a home run to left, and it was all downhill from there. The A's went on to lose 11-0. Then they lost the nightcap 5-0. It was the first time in the history of the franchise that they'd been shut out in both ends of a home doubleheader.
I was probably cranky.
Then Eck got hammered by Gibson, and I grew a little older and learned that National was no less patriotic than American and that's a stupid way to make decisions anyway. So I kinda played sports bigamist for a bit, the personification of those hats. You know which hats.
And lo and behold, the two teams defied all probability and promptly met in the Series. Those hats actually came into existence and horrified me. <em>Is this what I've become?</em> I was forced off the fence. Back into the loving embrace of might right truth and justice, fortunately. The prodigal son returned home from his wanders in the wilderness.
The once and future Giants fan.
I went on to cheer for the eventual loser in every World Series from 1988 through 2000.