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Traces: 1985
Longoria, Price make world debuts
By Anthony Castrovince /

Forgive Evan Longoria and David Price if they are, as the Bowling For Soup song goes, "preoccupied with 1985."

Longoria and Price were, after all, born that year. In fact, they were the youngest players involved in a youthful 2008 Fall Classic.

With Longoria's bat boosting the Rays all season and Price stepping up with his electric performance in the Rays' Game 7 win over the Red Sox in the American League Championship Series, these players didn't get their "Money for Nothing," which just so happens to be the name of a Dire Straits hit from 1985.

Longoria really earned his keep during the regular season, batting .272 with 27 homers and 85 RBIs. He was equally if not even more instrumental in the Rays' postseason run, cranking out six homers and 13 RBIs in 16 games.

Price, the top overall pick in the 2007 First-Year Player Draft, was a late arrival to the Rays in 2008, but he made an immediate impact by getting those final four outs to save Game 7.

Longoria and Price have more than just their birth years and postseason contributions in common. They also both grew up watching "Family Matters."

"And 'The Fresh Prince [of Bel Air],'" Price added. "I still watch that."

The rest of us are still watching plenty of the films and shows that were popular when Longoria (Oct. 7) and Price (Aug. 26) were born. And just as Michael J. Fox did in "Back to the Future," let's take a stroll back in time to see what was brewing in the headlines in 1985:

* The first dot-com is registered.

* The first version of Windows, 1.0, is released.

* Live Aid concerts around the world raise millions of dollars to help the starving in Africa, and the U.S. music industry unites to record "We Are the World."

* Ronald Reagan is sworn in for his second term in office.

* Mike Tyson makes his professional boxing debut.

* Mikhail Gorbachev becomes the leader of the Soviet Union.

* New Coke is introduced (and taken off the shelves three months later).

* The Ford Taurus is released to the public.

It was in 1985 that Rocky Balboa toppled the indomitable Russian Ivan Drago and all but single-handedly put a stop to the Cold War in "Rocky IV." It was the year in which "Tetris" first became an addictive presence in our lives. It was the year when David Lee Roth divorced Van Halen and Madonna married Sean Penn.

In St. Petersburg, the final plans were being put together for the Florida Suncoast Dome, with the hope that the stadium would lure a Major League team to Tampa Bay. In 1986, construction on the ballpark began. Now it's hosting its first World Series, thanks in no small part to two members of the Class of '85.

Anthony Castrovince is a reporter for This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.