Orioles vs. Red Sox 4/26/11 (On the field madness)

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So this Tuesday game was the first of a 3 game series vs.
the Red Sox.  I was getting out of class
right at 2 when I got some interesting texts on my phone.  Without sharing all of the direct details on
it, here’s a tweet from Adam Jones that explains how the day began:




Then by a half hour later, here was his next tweet:




So yes.  Adam Jones
was leaving me BP passes for the game.  I
didn’t share this info on Saturday’s entry, but during BP at the game that day,
Adam had called me over to talk by the outfield wall (after yelling at me for
dropping a Mark Reynolds home run) to inform me that something along these
lines was going to happen soon.  There’s
more background to all of this, but I won’t bother you with it (plus it’s half
private stuff anyways).


So I called up Zevi immediately (who was biking like an hour
outside of the city) and told him to get downtown.


By 4 o clock or so, I had met him down at Camden Yards.  We went to home plate plaza where the media
enters pre game and picked up our special passes:


Oriole Park Home Plate Plaza 42611



If you notice on the pass, it is attached to a very thin
string.  That damns string got tangled up
all day.  Quite annoying.  But really, no complaints from me.


Otherwise, you can see on the pass that we were guests
(“affiliation”) of Jones.  So an escort
was coming to get us to take us down to the tunnel and onto the field, and we
were getting excited:


Zevi on Oriole Park Field 42611


That’s Zevi, by the way. 
Not me.  I’m not a munchkin.

This is me, doing my best to smile creepily it seems:



Once we got down onto the field, the first thing we saw was the
Orioles pitchers stretching in a circle down the 1B line, some position guys
throwing and stretching, and a bunch of media members scattered all
around.  At this point, it was 4:30, and
we were stoked.


Orioles 42611 1

Orioles 42611 2


Soon after, Adam came out of the dugout, and made his way
over to where we were standing.  He shook
our hands, said hey, and told us “this is the major league experience” then ran
off.  Truly awesome.

Adam Jones Orioles 42611


We were told not to bother players and such unless
approached throughout the day, so we stuck to that.  It was cool enough just to be there.  Honestly. 
Even though Big Papi was standing 10 feet from us for like 10 minutes. 


Big Papi David Ortiz 42611 Orioles


This was the view when BP started at around 4:35:


Orioles Batting Practice 42611 1


Ronnie Deck eventually came out:


Ronnie Deck Stretching Orioles 42611


And came over to talk to us. 
He asked us how we got field access, so I explained, and he laughed and
ran off to help with drills and such.

Ronnie Deck Stretching Orioles 42611 2


More of Orioles BP before the gates had even opened:


Orioles Batting Practice 42611.jpg


The bottom right picture there is Nick Markakis standing up
on a step behind the cage.  He’s a boss.


When the gates opened at 5:00, we watched Tim and Matt (and
eventually Ben, who was nice enough to stop and say hello) sprinting around the
seats [as we usually do] to get out to left field.


Matt Tim Oriole Park 42611.jpg


If you click on that and look at the top left area, you can
see the time on the top edge of the photo showing 5:00 exactly.


The Red Sox came out and stretched:


Red Sox Stretching Oriole Park 42611


Amber Theoharis and Buck Showalter talked for a few minutes
within a few feet of where we were:


Buck Showalter Amber Theoharis 42611


Jake Fox gave me an air fist bump as he came out to
hit.  I had just talked to him during
Saturday’s game about some random stuff, so he was surprised to see me there I
guess.  He has to be one of the most
friendly MLBers around.  Really.  Yell to him or say his name, and he responds.


Then the O’s left the field and the Red Sox started hitting:


Red Sox Batting Practice Oriole Park 42611.jpg


Right before this, J.D. Drew and Jacoby Ellsbury were
playing catch by the Red Sox dugout. 
Ellsbury overthrew a ball to Drew, and it ended up bouncing into the warning
track and off of Zevi’s leg.  As Drew
turned around to see and eventually say sorry, Ellsbury had gotten another ball
and chucked it towards Drew.  Drew turned
back, and it hit him in the shoulder. 
Youkilis and a few others saw this, and we could see them laughing about
it and joking around and retelling the story to other teammates for the next 10
minutes or so.  Was funny stuff right


Brittany, Amanda, and Donna found us soon after.  I took this picture above and behind me,
without turning around.  Good work, Avi.




I mean, we were legit on the field for BP.


Oriole Park on the field 42611


The grounds crew soon came out to pack things up:


Oriole Park Grounds Crew 42611


And we had to leave:


Oriole Park on the field 42611 2


We had seen Matt and the rest of the guys get some baseballs
during BP, but we ended with none. 
Probably could have asked or even taken one or two lying around, but we
were enjoying just being there that nothing else was that important.


Adam actually messaged me during Sox BP saying he hoped we
enjoyed ourselves, and I responded with “we haven’t been kicked out yet!”.  Really cool. 
But we didn’t see him again until of course he took the field for the


Spent the game out in LF with the guys.  Our friend Beverly joined us for this one as
well.  It was the end of Passover, so we
all had Subway (Zevi hadn’t used his ticket to get in, so he left around the 4th
inning and ran to Pratt St. to pick up the food for all of us) sponsored by
Donna.  Thanks again, stretch lady/lot
lady/lady who smokes!


I spent the 3rd or 4th or some inning
down a few rows with new friend and MASN employee Joe Pappasomething.  Cool dude. 
And his bff is Jim Hunter; all the better.


So yeah.  No home runs
that we got, but all is well.  Still an
incredible day.  My first game since
mid-2009 without a baseball.  While that
is a cool streak to have, and one that is now sadly broken, it was TOTALLY
worth it.  And I made up for it big time
yesterday (Wednesday) during BP, but I’ll write about that later.


Again, thank you to Adam Jones for everything.  It was an incredible experience.  It showed me where I want to be in 4 years
(one of the scattered media members) and brought me closer to the Orioles team
which I have devoted so much of my time and money to.  Head up and fight on.  Special mention to Adam’s mother, who has become
a mentor-type figure to me, and who had a big part (I’m sure) in getting us on
the field.  I am excited to see her soon
as well in town!


Oh, and the Orioles won the game, 4-1.  Britton pitched 6 dominant, one run innings,
and the bullpen shut it down.  Jonesy had
two sacrifice flies on the day, as shown here by MLB.com:


Adam Jones Beats Red Sox 42611


And it was fun in the 7th inning (I think, or 6th)
watching Okajima and Albers warm up together. 
The best of both world…for opposing teams.


Matt Albers Hideki Okajima 42611


And a shout out to Matt
, who I forgot to mention earlier in the entry.  We sat with him, too.  And his friend (a Red Sox fan).  It was Matt’s birthday.  Though I kept forgetting it.  Happy birthday again, dude.



Awesome day.  And for the
bazillionth time, thank you to AJ.



Season stats:


Baseballs: 27 (16 hit, 7 on fly, 8
toss up, 3 found)

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

Orioles home games attended: 11

Orioles total games attended: 11

Total MLB games attended: 11

Total baseball games attended
(MLB+MiLB): 11

Rainouts: 2



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