The Morning Column: October 1, 2021

Fernando Tatis Jr. joined Giancarlo Stanton, Mark McGwire, Mike Piazza and Willie Stargell as the only players to ever hit a ball out of Dodger Stadium.

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OK, let’s get to it!

1. ⚾️ Fernando Tatis Jr. hits rare homer out of Dodger Stadium

The first game I ever covered at Dodger Stadium was on April 23, 1999. The Dodgers were playing the St. Louis Cardinals and I was an intern at XTRA Sports 1150, which was the radio home of the Dodgers at the time. As I was still trying to find my way around the press box and not get in anyone’s way, I witnessed history. In the top of the third inning, Fernando Tatis did something that had never been done before, has never been done since and will likely never be done again. He hit two grand slams in the same inning (amazingly off the same pitcher, Chan Ho Park).

Fast forward 22 years later and I found myself sitting in the same press box seat at Dodger Stadium as Fernando Tatis Jr. made his own history at Chavez Ravine. Tatis Jr. on Thursday joined Giancarlo Stanton, Mark McGwire, Mike Piazza and Willie Stargell as the only players to ever hit a ball out of Dodger Stadium. It was officially recorded as a 467-foot home run, making it the fifth longest homer ever at the stadium, but it looked as if it was over 500 feet on the replay. (The longest home run ever hit out of Dodger Stadium was 506 feet in 1963 by Willie Stargell, who is the only player to hit two home runs out of Dodger Stadium.) Either way, there’s something about the Tatis family and Dodger Stadium that make for some historical home runs.

2. 📕 Joe Posnanski talks Dodgers and ‘The Baseball 100’

New York Times bestselling author Joe Posnanski has a new book out, The Baseball 100, and there are three current Dodgers on his list of the 100 best players in baseball history – Clayton Kershaw, Max Scherzer and Albert Pujols. I asked him about Scherzer, who is the favorite to win the National League Cy Young this season, when he was on my show yesterday (you can listen to the full interview below).

“I'm so glad that people in L.A. are seeing this Max Scherzer,” Posnanski said. “This guy is such an extraordinary pitcher and such an extraordinary competitor. This is the last year of his contract and when he got that big, huge contract in Washington a lot of people thought that that it was going to be a disaster but it ended up being the best big money contract ever given to a player because of how great he was in Washington. He was having a good year in Washington but then he gets traded to Dodgers and suddenly, bam, look at this, you’re seeing the Max Scherzer, who is going to the Hall of Fame.”

3. 🎶 Song of the Day

4. 📸 Photo of the Day

A tape outline of Gavin Lux is placed on the outfield wall after his collision in Wednesday night's game as the San Diego Padres faced the Los Angeles Dodgers at Dodger Stadium on September 30, 2021 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Matt Thomas/San Diego Padres/Getty Images)

5. 💵 Odds and Ends Powered by Bovada

Here are some odds on Bovada if you’re thinking about placing a wager today.

6. 📆 Oct. 1, 1959: Dodgers face White Sox in World Series

On this day 62 years ago, Game 1 of the 1959 World Series took place between the Dodgers and the Chicago White Sox. While the White Sox would win Game 1, 11-0, the Dodgers would go on to win their first championship in Los Angeles by beating the White Sox in six games.

7. 🎂 Happy Birthday Mark McGwire

Happy birthday to Mark McGwire, who is turning 58 years old today. Everyone knows about McGwire’s hall of fame worthy career in Oakland and St. Louis but his roots to Southern California run deep. He was born in Pomona, went to Damien High School in La Verne, played baseball at USC with Randy Johnson and Jack Del Rio, was a member of Team USA at the 1984 Summer Olympics in Los Angeles and was a hitting coach for the Dodgers. He is also just one of five men to hit a home run out of Dodger Stadium.

8. 🎟 Ticket Time Powered by StubHub

Here are the “get in” prices for tickets if you’re thinking about going to a game today:

Milwaukee Brewers at Los Angeles Dodgers - $90

9. 📺 On The Air

⚾️ 7 p.m. – Los Angeles Angels at Seattle Mariners – Bally Sports West

⚾️ 7 p.m. – Milwaukee Brewers at Los Angeles Dodgers at Colorado Rockies – SportsNet LA

10. 📻 The Arash Markazi Show 

On Thursday’s show we talked to New York Times bestselling author Joe Posnanski about his new book, The Baseball 100, and some of the current Dodgers who are on his list like Clayton Kershaw, Max Scherzer and Albert Pujols.

Listen to The Arash Markazi Show on The Mightier 1090 Monday-Friday from 12 p.m. to 1 p.m., following The Rich Eisen Show. The Mightier 1090 has the second strongest radio signal in North America and can be heard from “Baja to the Canadian Rockies.” You can also listen to the show on SpotifyApple PodcastsGoogle Play and Stitcher.

And please click below to subscribe to The Morning Column at Substack. Please also consider supporting my colleagues at Substack (and former colleagues at ESPN and SI): Marc SteinHenry AbbottChad Ford and Ethan Sherwood Strauss on the NBA, Molly Knight and Joe Posnanski on MLB, Ariel Helwani on MMA, Dan Rafael on boxing, Grant Wahl and Leander Schaerlaeckens on soccer, Chris Peters on the NHL and Peter Bodo on tennis.

That’s it for today. Talk to you tomorrow!