Memorial Day Thoughts

I posted earlier about the hats being worn today in MLB and some other thoughts.  Just wanted to remind people that not only should we appreciate our soldiers and military and more today, but to keep them in your hearts each and every day.  It is because of them that we are able to watch our favorite teams play and go out and play ball ourselves.

If you watched baseball today, just think about every day that you get to watch baseball, and remember that it is a priviledge that you get to do so in a free life, many thanks to those fighting for this country.

God bless.

Memorial Day – Hats and Soldiers

Happy Memorial Day to all.  I know I’m still behind on the Royals entry from last week still, but it will get done this week. Very busy.

In the mean time, I wanted to throw this post up to remind everybody to not only watch the Orioles today in Seattle at 4, but that they will be wearing the stars and stripes caps:

How ugly.  I mean, I like the concept of different hats for this day and all.  The past ones have been really nice. But this one just looks pretty darn… not good.

Looking back at the past ones since the beginning of this tradition:

So yeah. I think they just ran out of ideas for this year.
Either way.

Bless the soldiers.  Think about them today.  Think about how they fight for you to be able to freely watch baseball on this day.  God bless.

 

 

Orioles JibJab Video

So MLBlogs recently posted on their community blog about a new JibJab editable video for MLB.  If you’ve never heard of Jib Jab, they make comical political videos, but have expanded to make all sorts of fun creations.

Long story short, I made an Orioles version of this video, so check it out (the embed code for the new blog doesn’t work, so just click the picture to see the video):

In it are Jeremy Guthrie, Adam Jones, Luke Scott, Brian Roberts, and Matt Wieters.

I was also at the last two games of the Royals series, so the blog for that should be up shortly as well.

BUT!

If you are interested in me making a video whether with different Orioles players or for your team, leave me a comment below or shoot me an e-mail (indiansfan621 at aim dot com) and I will gladly work on any new projects.

P.s. the Orioles are .500, so let’s all celebrate WOOOO!! Only 3 games back.  They got this.

Follow me on Twitter: @2131andBeyond

Orioles vs. Royals 5/24/11 (11 baseballs – personal record)

I arrived at the stadium for today’s game around 4:30, and was extremely worried because there was a slight drizzle of rain at the time.

BUT!

It stopped, and they hit.

Ben and Tim weren’t at the game, so Matt and I knew to race out to left field to go crazy with it.  And crazy it was.

By 5:07 (yes, gates open at 5), Matt and I had a combined 11 baseballs.  He had 7, I had 4.  He found one or two, but other than that, Mark Reynolds and a few others kept ripping HRs, and we were the ONLY people out there.  The ushers and even some Royals players were laughing and shouting things at us.  We must have looked insane.  We were running in every direction, and by the end of that when the Orioles were finished, we were dead tired.  After those 4, I got no more from the Orioles.

I put on my Royals cap when the KC pitchers started throwing:

And as I did, a ball was hit towards them, and still standing in left field, Robinson Tejeda picked it up and tossed it into the stands.  Randomly.  He legit just tossed it into the first row of my section, with nobody there.  I raced down and picked it up.  Odd.

I went over to the foul line and got Aaron Crow to throw me his warmup ball, then I ran over and picked up a ball in the seats that was overthrown (I don’t remember by who), offered it back, but they let me keep it.  Followed by a Blake Wood tossup, I was already at 8 on the day.  9 was my best ever (last Friday), and I had always wanted to hit double digits.  Back to left field:

Well, I caught 0 Royals HRs.  They hit a scattered few.  Billy Butler mashed.  I still got shut out.

I ran over to the bullpens, and got Rick Adair to toss me one of the balls laying in the bullpen (I was the only person with a glove asking).  Then I charged over to the CF seats and got a groundskeeper to toss me a ball from the gap.  10!!! Woohoo. Note: I did text Tim telling him how mad he should be that he didn’t go, because he has a ball retriever, and there were about 7 balls in the gap.

Down to the 3rd base line.

Billy Butler stretched then signed:

And I got his ugly auto:

Then Hosmer came out to stretch:

He and Mike Aviles played catch.  I stood right by them, and when they finished, Aviles tossed the ball to me.  Well, by that, I mean he tossed it in my direction, but about 15 rows up.  WTF!  To nobody!  And some random girl ran over and picked it up.  I looked back at him and he covered his face with his glove.  It was kinda funny how bad the throw was.  Whatever.  Hosmer signed:

How UGLY is that autograph?!

Oh yeah, and I got some pitcher to sign my ticket.  But I forgot to take a picture of it, and I’m too lazy to now.  Whoops.

After giving away three balls to a family of Royals fans that I chatted with and helped me to identify one of the Royals coaches, I got this shot of my remaining baseballs once I settled in LF:

Matt came by and I wanted to take a picture of his loot.  In the following picture, not only are there about 10 in his glove, but he’s searching through his bag.  He had at least 13-15 total or so:

Chilled with that Matt and also Matt Gardner and his buddy [Chris] Webber during the game.  I had them move like 4 times so I could keep positioning myself in open rows as places filled up.  But it was pretty empty, enough so that a home run within 2 sections either way would have been within reach.

Danny Duffy pitched for the Royals (only his 2nd career start):

And he destroyed the Orioles.

All throughout the game, these guys with jerseys labeled “Yard Guard” [1 and 2] would get up in the aisle and do an Orioles chant (so, so drunk).

Not to mention the girl in front of them that almost went on the field, then the guy behind her stopped her by pulling her pants halfway down.  Full moon.  It was a rough site to watch.

Oh yeah, there was a game.

In the late innings, Alfredo Simon got up to warm:

And he threw a pitch to Ronnie that skipped to the side.  Other bullpen catcher Rudy Arias picked it up and was about to put it in his back pocket, but I asked from right above him if I could get the ball.  And…

It was funny because I was over there to take pictures of Simon.  SO I had my camera in one hand and phone in the other, no glove, so I caught it practically between my wrists without dropping my phone [almost] into the pen.  Cool.

Simon did pitch, by the way.  1-2-3 inning. Shutdown sauce!

Then in the bottom of the 9th, I happened to snap these 2 pictures of the scoreboard as Adam Jones came up to bat:

And BAM! JONESY WITH A 2 RUN WALKOFF SHOT OFF OF TOP CLOSER JOAKIM SORIA! It was fantastic!

After the game, I went out to the players lot as always to hang out with Donna. We’re just cool like that. Carmen was out there too (she had come with Donna), and as I had randomly gotten Wieters to sign my shoe on Sunday, I got Chris Tillman to sign it this time. He was like “a shoe?!”. It was quite funny.

Oh, and by the way, from the Nationals series, here’s the video I got of manager Jim Riggleman getting ejected in the 1st inning. Ah, the advantages of sitting right behind the dugout randomly (good view!).

And now off to Royals game two of the series.  Woot.

Orioles vs. Nationals 5/20/11-5/21/11 (Battle of the Beltways)

So here’s the series recap.  Sorry for no daily posts this weekend, it was just so time consuming being at the ballpark, and the 4 o clock Saturday REALLY threw me off.

Friday, May 20th

So Nolan Reimold was called up (along with Ryan Adams).  But this was good because it adds a power bat for BP (temporarily):

This BP was very good for me from a personal standpoint.  How good?  I set my personal high mark.

After catching a Mark Reynolds HR on the fly, followed by one off of Jake Fox, I ran around to the 3B side where the Nationals were throwing.  I don’t generally change clothes or go for toss ups, but they are one of the nicest teams in terms of toss ups, so I had to try.  What did I wear, though?  A Capitals hat and random Akron shirt.  Nothing Nationals.

I had seen on my roster that it was Jayson Werth’s birthday, so I went over to where he was throwing and wished him a happy 32nd.  His return?  Not a toss up. No.  That would be too easy.  Instead, a ball was hit right by him, which he stopped, and *kicked* over to me.  I had to reach onto the field for it.  I thanked him and went off.

I went then over towards the foul pole, thinking I was going back for HRs.  One random trainer had a ball, and two Orioles fans were calling him for it, but I held my glove up for the hell of it, and he threw it to me.  The hat was working.

A few minutes later, in LF, Ben asked Todd Coffey for a ball.  Coffey asked Ben why he had an O’s hat on, and in turn threw the ball to me.  I had only been watching this happen, and simply held my glove up.  Hat was definitely a helpful item to have.

After that, I met up with Ed in LF, and while we were talking, Al the usher (who works the left side of LF seats) shouted for me.  I turned, and he pointed to under a seat.  There was just a random ball sitting there.  Cool.  Number six.  Tied my personal best.

I caught one Nats home run on the fly, followed by beating a group of people to one a bit later, which I handed to a kid who I had been talking to during BP, trying to help him catch his first ball.

And that was it.

Here was my remaining loot:

And the Nationals plastic-ish training balls from China that I had gotten:

Matt pulled in at least 14 on the day, and here’s just a small portion of those:

I went over to the Nats dugout pre-game:

And got a few autos.  Cole Kimball and someone else on my ticket:

And Roger Bernadina on a baseball (which I have NO idea where I put now to take a picture of it).

Ryan Adams was starting at 2B and got his first ML PAs.  He went 1-4 on the night.

And I got Luke Scott to toss me his warmup ball in the 9th in LF.  Number 9 for me on the day.  Personal record.

And the Orioles got slaughtered:

Saturday, May 21st

Dugout Club Day.  Meaning, lots of little children.

Not to mention I came 20 minutes late for some personal reasons, I got a ball BARELY from Doug Slaten late in Nats BP.  He was throwing it to kids, but they all missed it, it bounced up a step, and I picked it up.  Yes, I handed it right over to one of them (specifically an O’s fan with a glove).

So I guess that counts.

But I got one to keep a little later on when Nats BP coach Jim Lett tossed Ben and I each a ball from the bullpen (that had been hit there during BP).

Spent the game down the 3B line by the foul pole:

It was in the shade and out of the way of the children.

No baseballs, but hung out and talked with Matt and Matt. Yes, two Matts.  One is the Matt who’s always there, the other is this Matt.

Was a chill day.

They showed the Preakness:

The Orioles won 8-3, and with over 33k in attendance, the place was legitimately excited:

At the lot post game where we usually hang out, Kevin Gregg stopped to sign for the children:

And Luke Scott came out behind him, so he stopped to sign as well:

And that was that.

Sunday, May 22nd

Back today, hoping the O’s would take the series.

For a 1:35 game, I expected the gates to open at 11:30.  Down at the park around 11:20, and the gates were open.  HUH?!

Oh right.  It was little league day.

The people were everywhere:

And it was only 11:27!!!

People were even already in the upper decks!

Adam Jones and Brandon Snyder were playing catch in the OF.  Notice an extra ball on the ground as well:

But Brandon ran off, ignoring my call (that, or it was so loud he couldn’t hear me).  I legitimately thought I could get shut out today with no BP and barely any throwing even.

I saw Nats guys throwing across the field:

So I ran over.

Stood way back:

And called to Cole Kimball when he was done throwing and held up a huge target.  And…

Awesomesauce.  And it wasn’t even a garbage training ball!

The parade of children started:

So I headed off to Eutaw Street.  And saw a setup of lots of crackers and food:

So I took a whole bunch of the freebies and had my lunch for the day now in hand:

Even though some Nats came out to throw:

They gave all their balls to kids walking on the field.  Damn.

I ran back to the 1B side when I saw Mike Gonzalez and Alfredo Simon throwing:

I didn’t specifically need a ball, but I happened to want to talk to each of them.

Gonzo came over after and I spoke with him for a few minutes as he signed for people.  Asked him about going back to his old windup and such.  He knows me lately from talking to him, mainly because I’m a strong believer in him so I like to say hey when I can when he’s around.

Alfredo wandered back in before I had a chance to ask him about his new off speed pitches.

Brandon Snyder signed my one ball of the day:

Got some Nats autos:

So what did I do next?

Grabbed a seat in the 2nd row behind the Nats dugout.  Duh.

I wanted to get my first third out ball ever (except one I got when I was like 10 with my dad and bla bla bla I wanted one as a ballhawk, really).  So when Adam Jones grounded out in the bottom of the 3rd to end the inning, I stood up (with grey shirt and Caps hat on) and as Michael Morse ran in with the ball, he tossed it to Livan Hernandez at the dugout edge.  Huh?

Well, I shouted “HEY LIVO!” and waved my glove.  He tossed it.  Drunk guy in front of me reached up and smacked my face and hit the ball down.  Livo shook his head in disbelief.  The guy didn’t seem to care.  Two fans next to me asked if I was okay (they said it looked like he punched me).  I was fine, but pissed I didn’t get that ball.

Whatever.

So I moved over to Donna’s seats on the Orioles side:

To hang out with her and Cheryl (avid Nats fan and blogger).

When Vlad homered in the close game in the 7th inning, I caught these shots when he came home:

And the O’s won, 2-1.

By the lot post game, I got Matt Wieters to sign my shoe.  Yes, my shoe.  I had nothing else.

People know I have my Orioles shoes:

So here it was:

And zoomed in on the spot:

I took the shoe off for him to sign, I didn’t like stick my foot in his face.  I expected him to the my sharpie and sign while I held it, but he legit took the shoe into his car where he was and signed it and handed it back.  Funny stuff.

Miscellaneous

Again, the stats are still a little messed up, so I’ll bring those back next home stand after I can figure them out completely this weekend.  For now, know that I have about 65-75 baseballs, but will count for sure soon.  So instead of stats, here are some random notes:

THANK YOU TO ALL READERS, 2131 AND BEYOND RANKED #24 IN TOP-READ FAN BLOGS ON MLBLOGS! To see that list, click here.  But really, thank you all for following my craziness.

Here is a picture (credit to Uni-Watch blog) of Stephen Strasburg in an Orioles uniform:

Follow me on Twitter: @2131andBeyond

E-mail me at: indiansfan621 at aim dot com

Orioles vs. Yankees 5/19/11

This day got off to an interesting start.  After not coming the day earlier, Tim an Ben were here at this game.  Tim texted me around 4:15 saying that the cage was out, surprisingly, after it had been raining on and off all day.

That raining on and off thing happened all night as well.

Walking up to the stadium, there were like 5 of these huge trucks lined up on Camden Street:

I went up to see, and it was horses.  With the Preakness coming up, they had stuff going on for that.  I got to pet a horse.  Woooo.

Sitting at the gates, the rain took turns pouring for 10 minutes, then stopping. And repeat.

When we got in, the Orioles were taking BP.  While we later found out there would be no Yankees BP, at least we were seeing almost a full O’s BP, including Vlad and Markakis and such.

I snagged a HR on the fly from I think Reynolds, and another from Vlad.  That was it.  Ben got like a bajillion as usual.  I’m sure Tim did, too.  Matt got like 5 or so.  Fun times.

Here’s David Robertson and Joba the Hut talking with some O’s pitchers (Jim Johnson, Clay Rapada, Chris Tillman):

All the Yankees did was take some scrappy infield drills:

I went down to the O’s dugout to try for a warmup ball:

As you can see, there were people in front of the dugout, presumable for some award or something.  Then there was first pitch.  And you see grounds crew going to take the tarp off in the photo as well.

Where did I end up?

That’s right, it started pouring, so no Orioles came out to warm up, and I found a seat at the top of the undercover sections.

Then, I decided to go visit Beth on Club Level (she works at the main desk there, they are so so nice).  So after talking with her a bit, I found a nice view from a seat on club level on the 3rd base side:

You can see in the photo above, there are lots of words written on the jumbotron.  Here:

The general message they always put up during rain delays.  That’s all.

The rain finally stopped.  I headed back to the O’s dugout:

Orioles were stretching:

And I got JJ Hardy to toss me his warmup ball (he was throwing with Brandon Snyder):

It was a disappointing ball.  Not rubbed up or anything, as if some random ball from BP. Boo.

The game then happened:

This happened:

Then this happened:

That’s a photo of Eduardo Nunez’ HR post-shot.  Ben caught the ball, marked with the #1 on his shirt. Tim is 2, positioned a few rows up.  3 is my friend Leah who came to visit, 4 is me, then 5+6 is Matt Gardner and his friend Mark (or Marc, who knows).  Fun times.  You can watch the highlight here.  We were all standing around talking then in the 9th inning, and when he hit it, Tim and Ben ran to their rows, and Ben made a clean catch.

Then, Tim put his bag down and got a ball out, tossed it to Ben, who then launched it onto the field.  People were telling him to throw it back, so he did.  Sort of.  We always talk about any home run against a rival, we just throw a different ball back.  Perfectly executed, dudes.

Then the night ended, I headed home to sleep, and here we are.

Time for a weekend series against the Natinals.

Orioles vs. Yankees 5/18/11 (although it became 5/19/11)

So as I said in yesterday’s entry that recapped the last week or so, I’ve been quite busy and dealing with health stuff and bla bla bla.  I went to this game (the first of an 8 game home stand) hoping it would be a quick one.  I knew it was the Yankees, but I had an exam the next morning (which I just got back from as I write this) and other things due, so I was hoping for a 3 hour game or less.  Y’know, a normal game that goes until 10:00 and then I can get back home by 11.  It was Bartolo Colon against Zach Britton, a matchup of two guys who can work pretty quickly (at least it wasn’t Arrieta vs. a guy like Josh Beckett or something).

Well.  No.  The game went on a few ticks past midnight.  And here it is:

Tim and Ben were not at the game, as there was rain or something where they live, and Tim (later on) didn’t believe me still that there was no batting practice.  Well, there was:

By the way, that’s Brandon Snyder in the cage.  He was called up to take Cesar Izturis’ spot on the roster.

A few other regulars were there:

That’s Matt in the grey, Ed in the black.

After missing a few balls land a few rows in front of where I was and not risking ever again jumping over rows, Ed and a few other guys snatched those up, but soon after I caught a Mark Reynolds homer on the fly.  Following that, I ran over to the seats down the 3B line where Brandon Snyder had hit a ball into the seats, so I found that one before the one guy anywhere near it could.  On my way back, I snagged a Jake Fox HR on the fly, followed by running 2 sections towards the foul pole to snag a Brandon Snyder HR that landed in the aisle (barely beating out some guy with a glove but in full formal attire. Odd.).  That was it for me.

I went over to try for a Yankee tossup:

But no luck.  And nothing else.  Like a bajillion teenagers invaded the outfield from some bus trip, and it was just impossible.  Matt caught one on the fly during Yankees BP over some people, but that was it.  It was rough.  No ground rule doubles off the warning track or anything.

And after Tom asked me for a ball to give away to a kid, I took a picture of the 3 remaining:

The Orioles wished Brooks Robinson a happy birthday (p.s. it was Reggie Jackson’s birthday as well):

I did a good deed when I went to the box office to get tickets for Saturday; a soldier in full uniform was there buying ticket’s to Thursday’s (today’s) game against the Yankees (prime game ticket prices are so much more than non-prime).  Being a season ticket holder, I tapped on his shoulder, asked him if I could intervene, and told the box office employee to put them on my account and gave him my card.  In the end, after helping him also pick out seats that he liked best, I had saved him $66.  He bought two seats for $32 each that without my card would have been $65 each.  So he actually saved a dollar on one ticket and got another free, basically.  He thanked me profusely and went on his way.  These are the little things a person can do to be kind, and it didn’t take all the effort in the world.  God bless the soldiers.

And then the game was under way.

And the game kept going.

And going.

And going.

Soon enough, it was 1-1 and the start of extra innings.  To make matters worse, Matt and I were in left field and there were no home runs to be seen.  But maybe a walk off soon?

No.

The game just kept going.

I had places to be and things to do and an early day ahead of me.

But the game didn’t want to end.

Soon enough, it was the 14th inning:

And I went over to the MASN set to talk to my friend Joe Pappa[something].  He’s hilarious.  If you ever meet Joe at a game (he works for MASN), tell him I say hey. He’s the man.

And it kept going:

By the way, the Orioles had the bases loaded twice in extras.  They had men in scoring position with less than two outs multiple times.  It was just sad.

In the top of the 15th, Mike Gonzalez was brought on to relieve Jeremy Accardo who had left two men on (but credit to Accardo, he had pitched two innings to that point also and was keeping the O’s in it).  Facing Robinson Cano, it was a lefty-lefty matchup and all and… BAM.  Cano doubled.  Jones bobbled the ball in the right-center gap, and Cano went to 3rd.  Yankees up 3-1.

Oh, by the way, also: Mike Gonzalez was the last pitcher the Orioles had in the bullpen.  There was nobody left:

The man sitting there is bullpen coach Rick Adair.

So you would think Gonzalez has to pitch the O’s out of this?  Well, just in case, the next day’s starter, Jeremy Guthrie, came to the bullpen to toss a bit JUST IN CASE:

And what happens next?

This.

Mike Gonzalez hit Yankees scrappy outfielder Chris Dickerson (a fill-in) in the head.  Straight shot.  Though post-game he said it wasn’t intentional, and it doesn’t look that way… Gonzalez was thrown out immediately.

Reminder: he was the last pitcher.

If you watch that highlight, you even hear the broadcaster say “They don’t have any other pitchers!”

Woohoo.

Guthrie took his hoodie off, and here goes:

People didn’t know what to do on the field:

Guthrie was doing some long toss from the batter’s eye, as he usually does on game day when he STARTS:

And continued that out on the field (you can see him throwing from behind the mound):

Guthrie got Gardner to pop out (though Cano scored on the sacrifice) and then another fly out and ground out.  The O’s came up and got two men on, Brandon Snyder failed a dodging a Matt Wieters potentially loading up the bases single, and Hardy popped out to end the game.

29 left on base in the game between the two teams. Pathetic.

Here’s the box score, if you really want to see the madness.  7 at bats for multiple guys.

Then the Orioles messed up at announcing the next game.  Why?  Well, it was already past midnight.  So, the game was technically “today”:

And I got home by 2 or so, studied, got a few hours of shuteye, and here we are.

And I had this waiting on my Facebook wall when I got home from my friend Aaron:

As he says, I can add my own issues.  While I have many, they will come across through my writing on Baltimore Sports Report or Orioles-Nation (or both) soon enough when I am back to posting there, so will link and let you all know.  But props to Aaron for the thoughts.  Agree with them or not, the feeling of frustration in his post is something felt by all O’s fans at this point.

Off to nap, then another game tonight. As Adam Jones would tweet: #LEGGO

Orioles vs. Rays and Mariners 5/8/11-5/12/11

The last few weeks have been pretty stressful for me, not to mention MLBlogs was down over the weekend as they switched to WordPress. Without too many details, I have been busy with health and school stuff, yet managed to go to 4 games while the blog has been not updated. I was at the final Rays game last Sunday as well as the 3 game series vs. the Mariners last week. Here are some highlights and photos from these games, along with some notes. But no, these are not nearly full game recaps like usual. Camera broken means less pictures and no time means less notes and action, so this should be quick, yet fun.

And wow. Looking at past blog entries, this new programming for MLBlogs really screwed up the layout of each entry.  So sometime I’ll go back through and make the paragraphs look normal again on the old stuff.  In the mean time…….

Sunday, May 8th

So this Sunday was special, as Zevi and I were running a fundraiser to support The Red Devils. People bought tickets from us, and proceeds are going to the organization. With major help from Romeo, we had over 100 tickets sold for the game, and it was a lot of fun seeing some old and new friends.

BUT. There WAS batting practice. But still recovering from the health issues just a day earlier, I caught one BP home run (no idea who) and then rested some while Matt took over. Zevi came late and snatched up like 3 or 4 balls somehow.

My goal on the day was to get Evan Longoria to sign the home run ball I had caught the day before. So after BP, Matt and I went down the 3B line to see what we could find. Oh, here’s a picture of Matt wearing Brandon Guyer’s batting gloves he had gotten the night before (like I mentioned in the entry):


Guyer got sent down that day before the game. I guess Matt caught him at the right time.

We watched the Rays pitchers hit some:

David Price hit a HR and did a HR trot (that people seemed to know of, but I didn’t realize he had one). Here he is finishing it:

Sam Fuld, Matt Joyce, and Reid Brignac came out to warm up (notice the pink bats and stuff):

And after the Oriole Bird’s mother took this picture with me (in which I look quite crummy and tired):

I got Evan Longoria to sign the baseball:

He wrote “2011 83” under it, since it was his 83rd career HR. He was quite rude to me about it, and I have lost some respect for the guy. As he took it to sign, he first rejected signing sweet spot, but that was to be expected from him. But when I asked him to write 83 on it or something of the sort (after explaining that I had caught it), he gave me a whole bunch of attitude, claiming that I was going to sell it or something. 30 seconds later, he took it back out of my hand and said something like “you know what, fine” and scribbled the numbers on.

Whatever. I like it. But the guy got on my nerves.

I also got Matt Joyce and Reid Brignac to sign my ticket:

More guys warmed up:

And a fun yet very tiring day with people. I left a little early, the heat and such were getting to me on very little sleep and new meds to make me all better, but was a positive day. Well, except that the Orioles lost 3-5.

Tuesday, May 10th

Zack Hample was now in town (here’s his blog entry about the day).

I snagged 5 balls on the day. A Reynolds BP homer on the fly in LF, then 3 BP homers on the fly in the flag court during Mariners BP. The 5th ball? When I went over to sit with Brittany around the 3rd inning, I looked at the ground, and there was a ball sitting under the seats. Odd. Well, 5. Yet Tom the security guard, who’s hilarious and very nice to us, asked me for 2 earlier in the day (he gives them away), so here’s my 3 final on the day:

Zack even acknowledged my 3 flag court catches, so I was proud to beat out his lowly 1 :)

I got Todd Wellenmeyer, Carlos Peguero, and Jack Cust to come sign my ticket:

The Orioles won 7-6.

Wednesday, May 11th

I got 2 BP balls in LF, one on the fly.

Warmups:

I got Justin Smoak, Adam Kennedy, and Carlos Peguero (again) to sign my ticket:

The game:

In the 9th, I got Luke Scott to chuck me his warmup ball out in left field, much to the dismay of Tim and Ben.


The O’s won, 4-2. WOOOO.

Thursday, May 12th

Todd Cook and family were in town for this one. Big Mariners fans. His blog entry isn’t up yet, but when it is, it will be cool. I just know it.

BP (that’s Peguero and Michael Pineda standing on the field):

I snagged one ball on the day, and barely. Brandon League chucked a ball up to fans, it fell, I grabbed it, but handed it over to the girl who had been shouting “it’s my birthday” for the last hour in hopes to shut her up.

She shut up.

Zach Britton pitched 9 innings of scoreless ball:


But so did Jason Vargas for the Ms.

The Orioles won, though, 2-1 in extras. SWEEEEEEEP.

That’s it. The stats will be up… sometime. They are so messed up I need to correct a bunch of them anyways. Here are some random other photos:

Zack and I going for a ball Boog was tossing to us:

Some of the balls from these games are here. Not sure which are which:

A silly photo of me jumping in the seats during BP (with Tim and Zack in it). But hey, I did make the catch. Sorry for showing so much skin. My bad.

And, here’s my favorite photo Zack sent me. Him and I walking to the flag court mid-BP one of the days. I just think it’s a cool shot.

Off to go see the O’s beat the Yankees now. Till later, folks.

Follow me on Twitter: @2131andBeyond
E-mail me at: indiansfan621 at aim dot com

Orioles vs. Rays 5/9/11 (Longoria HR on the fly)

Just a note: for some reasons that I
rather not share publicly and all, I was in the hospital ER on Friday afternoon
well into the night (5/6).  Therefore, I
obviously did not go to the game on Friday night.  With finals work also piling up on me for
school, the next week or two of entries will be delayed a bit.  But, working on getting better and moving on.

 

So this game.  Saturday. 
It was a 1 o clock game because it was on FOX and FOX likes messing up
everybody’s schedules.  After only a few
hours of sleep, I still rushed down to the park for the game, thinking there
would be BP.  I was coming from my house,
so I had to stop by my apartment for my glove and drop off my computer, so I
showed up at the park in a rush in jeans and a random brown Adidas shirt.  Matt and a few others even realized I looked
different.  Besides the whole no sleep
thing, they saw me in jeans and not an orange shirt, two things that I have
never had at a game before.  Ever.  You’ll understand later more why I’m
mentioning the clothes.

 

So I got to the gates about 3 minutes
before opening.  I was supposed to be
buying Todd Cook and his son tickets
for the game, but due to the last minute complications, I could not make it in
time, so I contacted Todd and Matt, and Matt was able to hook him up.  This is what connections/friends are for.

 

Once inside, I had to take it easy on
myself still.  I got a Derrek Lee ball quickly
that he hit down the line and I picked up in the corner, followed soon after by
a Mark Reynolds HR on the fly in the aisle of 82/84.  Here’s a map:

 

Screen shot 2011-05-09 at 5.19.24 PM.png

 

So the lower red dot is the Lee ball, the
higher one is Reynolds.  Yes, there’s a
star there.  Hold on.

 

Matt, Zevi, and I found seats on the
aisle between sections 80 and 82.  Todd
and Tim joined us for most of the game there as well.  It was a beautiful day for baseball, and
after spending most of Rays BP and then pregame down time in the shade (I
needed to rest, so it meant missing out on some baseballs, but it was needed
for my health), here we were with a great spot in LF:

 

Oriole Park Left Field 5711

 

Notice the open seats in front of
us.  They became important.

 

Here’s another view:

 

Oriole Park Left Field 5711 2

 

In the top of the 3rd, with 2
men on and 2 out, up steps Evan Longoria to the plate.  Longoria has been on the DL for most of April
(was put there during the opening series vs. the O’s in Tampa).  And BAM, Longoria hit a shot to deep
left.  As opposed to a few weeks ago when
I ran down the steps too quickly and overplayed an Alex Rodriguez grand slam, I
took these steps very slowly.  With a lot
of room around, as seen above, I played the ball perfectly, and BAM, I caught
Evan Longoria’s 3 run home run, his first shot of the season, first RBIs of the
season, and 83rd career blast.

 

Matt was right behind me in case I
misplayed it, as you can see in the
video
, but I was in the perfect spot for it.  Now why did I mention the clothes?  Of course, if you watch, there I am, on
national TV, catching a HR in random street clothes.  Way to represent as an Orioles fan, Avi.

 

No, I did not throw the Longoria ball
back.  I got lots of heckles to do so,
but of course I just sat down and ignored them. 
People were telling me I wasn’t a real fan, Miss Kelly even came down
the steps and had to shush a fan who was pointing and screaming at me non-stop
for being a horrible person.

 

Here are some screen shots of the HR
catch (taken by @RobEffinBrown for
me):

 

Here’s the snag as it happened:

 

Shot1.jpeg

 

And zoomed in (with Matt right behind and
Zevi is there like 2 steps up in the orange):

 

Shot2.jpeg

 

Then here I am once I have the ball and
Matt is congratulating me on it:

 

shot3.jpeg

 

And zoomed in:

 

shot4.jpeg

 

And here’s the ball itself:

 

Evan Longoria Home Run 5711

 

Soon after, I got a text from Todd Cook
asking if Matt had caught the ball.  I
told him no, I did.  Then, I got lots of
tweets and texts of people asking about it. 
It was exhilarating, and definitely a positive part to my day after a
really bad day before.  Although it meant
the Orioles went down 4-0, so I didn’t celebrate it publicly at all.

 

Todd and Tim came over to sit with us
soon after, as well as Nats fan and all around baseball fan Michael Jasser, who
I had never met before but who follows the blog.  Was great to meet Michael and good to talk
with him for the rest of the game as he sat with us in LF for the remainder of
the afternoon.

 

Oh, here’s Super-Jew Sam Fuld:

 

Thumbnail image for Sam Fuld Oriole Park 5711

 

Tim Cook had brought a toy with him from
an Indians game that he had gotten of the mustard hot dog that runs in the hot
dog race in Cleveland, and as I was taking photos, he told me to take pictures
of the toy:

 

TimCDog.jpg

 

Matt had talked with Brandon Guyer the
day before (the day Guyer hit his first
ever HR on his first ever AB
), so he told Matt to come by the dugout after
the game.  Around the 8th
inning, Matt, Zevi, and I relocated to the Rays dugout:

 

DSCF3132.JPG

 

Where after the game, Guyer gave Matt his
batting gloves.  I attempted to get
Longoria to sign the ball, but he didn’t. 
I knew I could try again tomorrow, though.

 

Oh, and Guyer was optioned the next day.

 

Good stuff.

 

DSCF3136.JPG

 

Pictured there are 2 balls (one on left
is the Reynolds HR, right is the game HR from Longo, gave away the Lee ball),
my ticket, and a kids Orioles mag I found on the way out.

 

 

Season stats (somehow, a ball got lost in translation
here, not sure where, but it’s either 39 or 40):

 

Baseballs: 39 (28
hit, 11 on fly, 8 toss up, 3 found)

Autographs: 4
(Scherzer, Guerrero, Oliver, Pavano)

Orioles home games
attended: 14

Orioles total games
attended: 14

Total MLB games
attended: 14

Total baseball
games attended (MLB+MiLB): 14

Rainouts: 2

 

 

 

Follow me on Twitter: @2131andBeyond

Email me at: indiansfan621 at aim dot com

Orioles vs. Red Sox 4/27/11+4/28/11

People STILL are coming here looking for the post on the
Jose Valverde spitting incident.  Here. Here it is.

 

Sorry for the delay, folks. 
Finals week[s] here at school, so been bogged down with more work than
one could imagine (yes, I’m a classic procrastinator).

 

Last week, I was at the entire 3 game Red Sox series.  I posted then about the Tuesday game when I was
on the field for BP.  I got 0 baseballs
that day, but it was still fantastic. 
Check out more on that entry here
(some good pictures, if I may say so myself).

 

So without getting a baseball at the game before, I got back
at it today.  And fast.

 

I would add the seating chart with ball locations, but they
are all clumped together so it would be hard to direct to which is which.  But here they are by description:

 

Ball 1 was tossed to me by an usher named Al.  He works the sections in LF next to Miss
Kelly (who works 82-86).  He’s a cool
dude.  If you’re out in the LF lower box
area, be nice to him.  Always says hey to
me every day.

 

Ball 2 was a horrible call on my part, but still got
it.  Headed my way about 10 rows into
section 82 (2 over from bullpen) and I reach my glove out for it and it blows
by into the seat and I picked it up from the seat.  I remember this happening and all of us
laughing about it.  I still have no idea
what happened, but the best reason we could come up with is allergies acting up
and my eyes were all watery (according to like 3 people) but who knows.

 

Ball 3 started the streak of balls that bounced away from
Ben and right into my direction.  If you
don’t know who Ben is, refer back to my new glossary of people that I put up last week or so.  It was a Robert Andino pulled down the
line.  Ben was a full section closer, but
also 8 or so rows farther down.  As he
got closer to it, it took a bounce and went right towards me and I barehanded
it off some other guy’s glove.

 

Ball 4 was a ball that Reynolds hit to the top of section
80, and Ben ran up completely to get it, but it took a bounce off the wall of
the aisle, then hit a chair, right to me like 4 rows down a section over.  No joke. 
And Ben was pissed (no worries, folks, he still had 5 on the day).  I would have been, too, if I were him.

 

Ball 5 was a Jake Fox HR, his last on the day
coincidentally, that landed somewhere and I got it.  I don’t remember it, I just have that written
down on my phone that it was his last on the day and I caught it just not on
the fly.

 

Ball 6 a Dustin Pedroia home run hit towards the beginning
of Red Sox BP that I got somewhere around section 82 I know.  Don’t remember how, but I know it also was
not on the fly.  Just going off my basic
notes from a week ago here, people.

 

Okay, fine.  Here’s
the ball chart.  Though I didn’t label
each individually, but when I put them on, I did roughly estimate where each
one was to the best of my knowledge, so have fun trying to match them all up:

 

426BallChart.png

 

So there, I had 6 balls on the day, none on the fly with my
crappy vision.  My record for a single
game, by the way, was 6.  People are
always surprised by that since most ballhawks have their days of double digits
and such.

 

Well, I spent the rest of the day being just close to
baseballs, but never reaching number 7. 
We had some troubles getting Mark Connor to toss us one of the 5 or so
lying in the O’s bullpen, but whatever.

 

I ended with 6.

 

Baseballs glove oriole park

 

There are 7 pictured there. 
It includes my one spare I always have on me (in case I get none and
want to a) give one away or b) get one signed). 
I just didn’t feel like going through my notes to figure out which was
the odd ball out.

 

Josh Beckett was on the mound for the Red Sox, meaning it
was going to be a looonnnggg night.

 

Josh Beckett warmup Oriole Park 42711

 

Stayed in LF with people. 
Don’t remember who was there besides the usuals (Matt, Ben, Tim).

 

Spent the last 3 innings or so between the flag court, CF
seats, and going for foul balls.  Here
were some of my different views as I positioned myself all around based on the
batter:

 

Oriole Park View 1 42711

Oriole Park View 2 42711

DSCF3097.JPG

 

So…

 

 

Season stats:

 

Baseballs: 33 (22
hit, 7 on fly, 8 toss up, 3 found)

Autographs: 4
(Scherzer, Guerrero, Oliver, Pavano)

Orioles home games
attended: 12

Orioles total games
attended: 12

Total MLB games
attended: 12

Total baseball
games attended (MLB+MiLB): 12

Rainouts: 2

 

 

 

Then there was Wednesday’s (4/28) game.

 

I got three Orioles BP home runs,
including two from Mark Reynolds, one of which was on the fly.  I don’t remember where around, I just know I
got them.  And all of my baseballs have
gotten jumbled up lately, so I don’t know which to photograph to show you.  You’ll just have to believe me.  If you don’t, well… I don’t really care.  I know what I did.

 

For Red Sox BP, I went over to the flag
court when the group came up including Carl Crawford and Big Papi.  Tim and Ben were also over there, so I had
some solid competition.  Papi hit a blast
that I caught on the fly about 5 feet behind where I was standing and 10 feet
in front of Ben.  I guess he laid off, or
didn’t see it, or something.  But I
jumped a bit back and caught it uncontested.

 

Mission accomplished.  I had gone over to the flag court for two BP
sections now in my LIFE.  This time, and
the one time against the Twins.  Both
times, my goal was to get a ball on the fly from the ultimate mashers from
those two teams: Jim Thome and David Ortiz.

 

Done.

 

This night was interesting.  I ran back and forth between LF and the flag
court for the first 5 innings or so based on who was hitting.  It was a RHP for the O’s, so the Red Sox were
STACKED lefty.  Then from innings 6 and
on, I spent time in the flag court or CF seats for lefties and then moved down
the 1B side playing for foul balls for righties.

 

I got nothing.  But hey, it was fun trying it for the night,
the whole running around playing the odds for a game ball thing.

 

Here’s a picture I got earlier in the
game of the scene:

 

Oriole Park Left Field 42811

 

That’s Tim’s head on the bottom.

 

Looking at my camera, that is THE only
picture I took at the game.

 

So yeah. 
But I’m writing this on Saturday night, 5/7.  I have been to a game since, and will write
about that one soon, which has MANY more pictures and a bit of exciting news.  Stay tuned.

Orioles game tomorrow will be exciting for one reason: Fundraiser.  I wrote about it way back in this post, and it’s finally happening tomorrow. Zevi and I sold tickets to tomorrow’s game to support The Red Devils, and we hope it’s a big success.

Well… peace.

 

Season stats:

 

Baseballs: 37 (26
hit, 9 on fly, 8 toss up, 3 found)

Autographs: 4
(Scherzer, Guerrero, Oliver, Pavano)

Orioles home games
attended: 13

Orioles total games
attended: 13

Total MLB games
attended: 13

Total baseball
games attended (MLB+MiLB): 13

Rainouts: 2

 

Oh, and by the way, in case anybody hasn’t seen it yet, here’s the newly released logo for the 2011 World Series:

World Series 2011 MLB logo

 

Follow me on Twitter: @2131andBeyond

Email me at: indiansfan621 at aim dot com

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