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World Series Comes to Florida

October 19, 1997

MIAMI (AP) _ The World Series came to Florida for the first time on Saturday night when the 5-year-old Marlins played the Cleveland Indians in Game 1.

After an afternoon of rain, the skies began clearing shortly before gametime at Pro Player Stadium and the game started at 8:10 p.m. EDT, with thousands of flash bulbs popping. The gametime temperature was 76 degrees, unusually warm for the World Series.

Orel Hershiser, at 39 the oldest pitcher to start a World Series opener in 38 years, went to the mound for the Indians, while 22-year-old rookie Livan Hernandez went for the Marlins, the youngest starter in an opener since 1988.

The teal-and-orange ballpark was packed with about 66,000 fans, by far the most ever to see a baseball game in Florida.

Cleveland had Bip Roberts leading off and playing second, followed by Omar Vizquel at shortstop, Manny Ramirez in right field, David Justice in left field, Matt Williams at third base, Jim Thome at first base, Sandy Alomar at catcher and Marquis Grissom in center field.

Florida had Devon White leading off and playing center, followed by Edgar Renteria at shortstop, Gary Sheffield in right, Bobby Bonilla at third, Darren Daulton at first, Moises Alou in left, Charles Johnson at catcher and Craig Counsell at second.

The Marlins, who advanced by beating San Francisco and defending NL champion Atlanta, are the first wild-card team ever to advance to the Series.

Cleveland, in the Series for the second time in three seasons and seeking its first title since 1948, beat the defending World Series champion New York Yankees and the Baltimore Orioles.

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