Jose Canseco, speaking once as a rookie about his dream home run, had a quick answer, as if he'd thought about it many times before: "Grand slam in the World Series."
Well, Jose, welcome to your dream - and pitcher Tim Belcher's nightmare.Not 600 feet, but 400. Not over the roof in Yankee Stadium, but to straightaway center in Dodger Stadium. Not a 3-2 count, bottom of the ninth against Roger Clemens, but 1-0, top of the second against Belcher.
"I knew I hit it low, but I hit it so hard. The ball had good spin on it, good carry," Canseco said.
Canseco kept his eye on his first major-league grand slam throughout its flight and trotted slowly toward first, still holding his 35-ounce, 35-inch bat in one hand.
When the ball bounced off the top of a television camera and smashed against a railing beyond the fence, he flipped the bat away, pumped both fists in the air and circled the bases with a well-practiced trot. After 42 homers during the regular season and three in the American League playoffs, Canseco has his bouncy trot down pat.
Later in the game, however, Canseco found out how grand a homer can be, even with fewer than three runners on base. Kirk Gibson hit a two-run shot over Canseco in right field in the bottom of the ninth inning to give the Dodgers a 5-4 victory.
"I didn't even move for it," Canseco said. "I just took one step.
"He's a great hitter, just like I am. He's strong."
Canseco's homer was set up by Belcher's wildness.