Cliff Johnson 1984

 

Cliff Heathcliff Johnson 1984 gamer used while suiting up for the Blue Birds on the road that season. This guy was some kinda character. You never knew what he was going to do to make the kids and fans laugh around the park during batting practise. It was 1983 or 1984 while he was with the Oakland A’s, I was down early for BP trying to snag some lumber. Johnson comes out of the clubhouse tunnel looking like he hadn’t slept for days. No hat, hair a fro gone wild, BP jersey untucked and eyes that were hard to see. He kinda looks around, says hi to us all over in the stands and proceeds to start the show. He, with obvious purpose for us to see, stares down about 20 feet from him at a fielding glove. He gets a strange tilted look to his mug and starts to walk towards it. Gets to the glove and stares at it in wonderment as to what exactly this piece of leather is. Bends down and with operative precision, plucks the glove up with two fingers by a long thread of leather. It dangles above his head as he walks towards us and as he gets close, he tosses the mitt 5 rows into the stands. I was too close to the front to get at it but some guy got it and was really excited until Jackie Moore, a coach at the time, was noticing what was happening and was already walking towards the stands. It was his glove Johnson had tossed up as a free gift to the fan and now he was wanting it back. Johnson had to ask for it back as he stood not 2 feet from me talking to the guy with the glove. What was going on was Johnson was a designated hitter for the most part since coning to the American league with the New York Yankees. A glove to him and for the fans to notice, was foreign to him and should not be anywhere around. It was really funny to see this unfold and its a fond memory I have of the stadium I grew up watching baseball in. Yes, he did get the glove back for Jackie Moore.