What the Dodgers and the Giants Mean to Californians

The teams are tied in the National League division series.,

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ImageThe Dodgers' Mookie Betts celebrating with Walker Buehler after hitting a two-run home run during the fourth inning of Game 4 on Tuesday.
The Dodgers’ Mookie Betts celebrating with Walker Buehler after hitting a two-run home run during the fourth inning of Game 4 on Tuesday.Credit…Marcio Jose Sanchez/Associated Press

It’s on. The Los Angeles Dodgers beat the San Francisco Giants last night, 7-2, leaving the teams tied in the National League division series.

The final, winner-take-all game in this historic postseason matchup is scheduled for Thursday at 6 p.m. at Oracle Park. The victor will move on to face the Atlanta Braves to play for a World Series berth.

The San Francisco and Los Angeles rivalry is older than sliced bread, but it has reached a fever pitch this week as the teams, with the most wins in all of baseball this season, fight to stave off elimination.

Over the past few days, you’ve been telling me your (very strong) feelings about the competition. As one Dodgers hater wrote: “I am not normally a vengeful or bitter person, but in this case I make an exception.”

And yet — perhaps this is sacrilege to die-hard fans — there was something lovely about many of the memories you shared of matchups past, even those of your team losing.

It’s clear that Dodgers vs. Giants games, whether heard on the radio, watched on TV or seen in a stadium, are an essential part of being a Californian for so many: a space to find community, fall in love, feel wonder, and connect with family and friends.

Stan Coleite, a reader who lives in Los Angeles, told me he’ll cheer for the Giants if they make it to the World Series, even though he’s a longtime Dodgers supporter.

“I root for the home team. Home is California.”

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Brandon Crawford signed autographs for Giants fans before Game 2 on Saturday.Credit…Jed Jacobsohn/Associated Press

Here are some of the best memories you sent in:

“I met my husband at a Dodgers-Giants game in 1983 at Dodger Stadium. I was attending with a bunch of guys from work. He was there on a date! We moved to the Bay Area and became Giants fans.” — Lindy Kennedy, Aromas

“In 1960, on Labor Day weekend, my dad took me to my first ever professional baseball game. The setting was a brand-new Candlestick Park, and on the mound were Dodger great Sandy Koufax and for San Francisco, Mike McCormick. It was a beautiful fall day, and it was magic to see the men I so admired square off against one another.” — Bart O’Brien, Colfax

“When I was in high school, the Dodgers offered two pairs of free tickets to summer games for students who kept an A (3.6) grade-point average. My parents didn’t care about my grades, and actively discouraged me, a girl, from going to college.

But after graduating high school, I was on my way to college with a scholarship paying the way. I have no investment in who wins or loses this historical postseason matchup, but I will always be grateful to the Dodgers.” — Sheila Green, Sacramento

“I’m a native Angeleno, but college brought me to Northern California where I settled down with an SF Giants-loving guy and raised two girls. Tried as I could to convert the girls to the Dodgers fan base. No luck.

So where do I fall now on the Dodger-Giant spectrum? Well, I can’t shake my pride for Dodger blue and a smile for every hit. But orange and black look good on me.” — Martha Mathias Jacoby, Meadow Vista

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A Los Angeles Dodgers Blue Crew member waved a Dodgers flag before Game 3 on Monday.Credit…Ronald Martinez/Getty Images

“As a kid my dad had Dodgers season tickets. My favorite memory was a roasted peanut vendor named Roger Owen who could throw a bag of peanuts from five rows away and hit you perfectly. I saved a bag of peanuts that he signed — until recently when I gifted it to a young nephew who is a Dodgers fan.” — Gail Benjamin, Pacifica

“My favorite memory of the Giants-Dodgers rivalry was the 1962 pennant race. Up to that point, the Giants were always bridesmaids to the champion Dodgers led by Koufax and [Don] Drysdale. I can still recall listening to the voice of Russ Hodges on my transistor radio excitedly describing the Giants’ rally in the late innings of the regular season’s final game, which would punch their ticket to the World Series.” — Stan Lathrop, Nevada City

“My family and I immigrated to the United States from India in 1966, and we settled in San Jose. A few months later, a group of my new third-grade buddies invited me to walk to a neighborhood grocery store to buy baseball cards — a pack for a nickel.

The cards seemed odd to me, but I was very happy with the bubble gum stick that came in my pack. My friends, on the other hand, were soon shocked and excited when they found that my pack included a beautiful Don Drysdale card, showing the great pitcher in a pitching motion and Dodger Stadium in the background.

My friends then schooled me: We live in the Bay Area and, therefore, we are all Giants fans. I dutifully dumped the now-valuable card and, for the past 55 years, I’ve remained a passionate fan of the San Francisco Giants.” — Thomas Varghese, Alameda

For more:


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Flames from the Alisal fire jumped four lanes of Highway 101 on the Gaviota Coast on Tuesday.Credit…Mike Eliason/Santa Barbara County Fire, via Associated Press
  • Wildfires: The Alisal fire, which began on Monday near Santa Barbara, had consumed 21 square miles and was 5 percent contained as of Tuesday evening.

    In Northern and Central California, dozens of mobile homes were damaged and at least one man was burned by wildfires on Monday, The Associated Press reports.

  • Captain Kirk: How to watch William Shatner launch to space this morning.

  • Vaccine resistance: Far more police officers have died from Covid-19 than from any other work-related cause in 2020 and 2021. Even so, vaccines remain a hard sell.

  • Strike at Kaiser: More than 24,000 nurses and other health care workers at Kaiser Permanente in California and Oregon are threatening to walk out over pay and working conditions, The Associated Press reports.

  • Vaccine harassment: A new California law makes it illegal to harass people on their way to get any kind of vaccine, California Healthline reports.

  • Flu vaccine mandate: The University of California is requiring all students, employees and faculty on each of their campuses to receive the flu vaccine by Nov. 19. Those who opt out must wear a mask through the end of the flu season, according to The Sacramento Bee.

SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA

  • Park name change: Los Angeles is removing Junipero Serra’s name from a downtown park, LAist reports.

  • Obituary: Ruthie Tompson, who breathed life into classic Disney films, has died at 111.

CENTRAL CALIFORNIA

  • Wind storm: Nearly 5,000 PG&E customers in the Fresno area were without power on Tuesday morning after a severe wind storm, The Fresno Bee reports.

NORTHERN CALIFORNIA

  • Hedge funds make big money on PG&E: An analysis found that 20 Wall Street hedge funds have collectively dumped 250 million PG&E shares since the utility emerged from bankruptcy protection last year, grossing at least $2 billion, KQED reports.

  • Bay Area exodus: A new poll found that over half of Bay Area residents plan to permanently leave the area in the next few years. The cost of housing is propelling their departure, The San Francisco Chronicle reports.


Stuck at home during the pandemic, many Americans took in dogs or cats. Others took up a more elaborate pet hobby: luxury home aquariums.


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Credit…David Malosh for The New York Times

How to make bagels.


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Credit…Alexandra Hootnick for The New York Times

Today’s travel tip comes from Dawn Hill, who recommends a trip to Humboldt County:

Although Mendocino is more famously touristy, Humboldt County is just as beautiful and about half the price. We have all the ocean, ALL THE REDWOODS, half the tourists, and half the prices.

Tell us about your favorite places to visit in California. Email your suggestions to CAtoday@nytimes.com. We’ll be sharing more in upcoming editions of the newsletter.


A new memoir of Filipino American family life.


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Credit…Alexandra Hootnick for The New York Times

Cocktails to go are here to stay.

Under a law recently signed by Gov. Gavin Newsom, restaurants and bars can continue selling takeout alcoholic drinks, originally a temporary measure intended to boost sales during the pandemic.

Cheers!


Thanks for reading. I’ll be back tomorrow. — Soumya

P.S. Here’s today’s Mini Crossword, and a clue: Kings and queens, but not jacks (4 letters).

Steven Moity and Mariel Wamsley contributed to California Today. You can reach the team at CAtoday@nytimes.com.

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