Category: Dailies

Fanfest Plans. Who wants in?

Two more links to plug.  One about the ticket prices going up at Oriole Park and the other concerning the new rumor about the Orioles “inside track” to signing Vladimir Guerrero.

Fanfest is a week from tomorrow morning.  My plans are almost set for the day.

I am finishing moving into my new apartment over the next few days.

Nothing major else to report.  My plans for Fanfest are as follows:

Get to Convention Center around 7-8 AM.  Chill there until opening at 10 AM.  Stay until they kick me out around 6:30 PM.  And LOTS in between.

If you’re going, let me know.  Tweet @ me (@2131andBeyond), comment here, or anything else, really.  Would love to meet up with as many people as I can.  I’ll be the crazy one wearing an Orioles Hawaiian type shirt and Santa hat.

Last story: I put $1.60 in the light rail ticket machine this morning to get to work.  It dispensed a ticket and $1.55 in change.  I win.

Shameless Plug. The first of many.

With all of the excess writing that I do between work and for the hell of it, I will often post on here different links to things I have done.  Yesterday’s post included an article I did on mygameballs.com, and today’s is on baltimoresportsreport.com.

Check it out: Albert Pujols to… Baltimore?! now on BaltimoreSportsReport.com

Eventually, I will add a widget on the sidebar here with mucho links.  That’s a project for the months of February and March, Fanfest to Opening Day, or what I like to call: ICAN’TWAITANYLONGERFORBASEBALL.  Fanfest is like a teaser.  It’s the baseball Gods taunting us for a day, then telling us we have to wait another two months.  Damn.

Supporting Breast Cancer Awareness: MLB Style

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Only two and a half more weeks until Orioles Fanfest.  Woot. 
Talking with a whole lot of people about all kinds of ideas, including
wearing sweater vests, winning a trip to Florida, shouting at Buck Showalter,
but for the most part, how to get everything out of the event as possible.  With the new $15 per table autograph policy,
there will definitely be some changes to my attack plan, but none the less,
lots to do and people to see.

 

In other news, I got an awesome package in the mail a few days ago.  It contained two items, both the same,
awesome piece.

 

A little background on this whole story:

 

At the end of last baseball season, on the day of the last
game of Orioles Fan Appreciation Weekend, Orioles bullpen catcher Ronnie Deck
(who I will be talking about a LOT on here) handed Zevi a glove-ful of
memorabilia.  Being literal here.  After the game, they had a nice talk to end
the year (I was already at school in Ohio, and had said my goodbyes the month
before):

ZeviWithRonnie.jpg

and Ronnie handed Zevi one of his catching mitts, filled with other
goodies:


ZeviWithGlove.jpg

Inside of it were two of his
gloves (the ones catchers wear inside their mitts, kind of like batting gloves)
and also two pair of wristbands.  Each
pair were his game used wristbands from both Father’s Day (blue ones supporting
prostate cancer awareness and research) and Mother’s Day (pink ones supporting
breast cancer awareness and research). 
Here is what they look like, if you don’t remember from when players
wore them (this is a general picture from the internet, not of his, which are dirty
and beat up):

wristboth.jpg

 

So Zevi and I each have possession of one of each of these
wristbands now:

RonnieStuff.jpg

Then I got an idea.  How great would it be to have new ones of
these for myself to wear (considering I did not want to wear his game used
ones).  So, I did what all modern day
shoppers do: I searched Ebay.  Why?  Because these items were not for sale from
MLB; they were an exclusive apparel piece only available to players.  Here’s what I found (feel free to click to enlarge):

 

Screen shot 2011-01-11 at 1.02.20 PM.png

One entry.  And it was
perfect.

 

I contacted the guy, made him an offer for him to close the
auction and to sell me the wristbands as a ‘buy it now’ type of thing, and
hoped for a positive reply.  The day
after, he messaged me back accepting my offer, and here we are today:

wrist2.jpg

wrist1.jpg

I will say this.  On
the listing, he notes that they are from a player who wanted to stay unknown,
but when I asked him, he told me that they belonged to Pedro Alvarez.  Cool. 
Is that true?  Are they
authentic?  Honestly, I don’t care.  They could be straight from the factory for
all I know, and I’d still be happy.

 

So, look for me to have this on throughout the 2011 season
and more.

Oh, and sign this petition in regards to my plea to the Orioles to let fans into the park earlier so that we can see the Orioles take batting practice and not just the away team: http://www.petitionspot.com/petitions/OrioleParkBP

Continue reading

Update. 2011 Season Plans. Much. Much. More.

What is UP?!

Got lots to share.  Can’t WAIT for the 2011 season.  This post is a kick start to the 2011 blogging season, where I will be sharing not only game by game posts about the best fans and experiences at Oriole Park, but some bits and pieces of insider info on the Orioles and things around baseball.

So.  Here are the notes:

-I still co-run http://Orioles-Nation.com.  Check that site out.  We have a new design, some great articles, a growing staff, and most importantly, growing forums.  Feel free to sign in to those and participate, they should be in full swing by April.

-I also still write for http://BaltimoreSportsReport.com.  So check THAT site out as well.  Great staff there.  Great articles covering all Baltimore area sports, especially your Ravens (blech).  My latest bit on there was an Orioles roster breakdown, so check that out.  I will do a piece sometime before Spring Training starts on here about my thoughts on the O’s roster.

-ORIOLES FANFEST IS SATURDAY, JANUARY 29TH. BE THERE.  Doors open at 11 AM for the general public and 10 AM for season ticket holders (who get first dibs on an autograph session, so it turns out).  Tickets are on sale on the Orioles website.  I will be there in full glory of this Orioles epic shirt and my O’s Santa hat.  While they are charging for autos this year (read more about it here), it should still be a great time.  What the O’s don’t go into detail about are the sales.  There is usually a main area of memorabilia sales, with jerseys, uniform pieces, baseballs, signed stuff, and the best: all of the banners and such from Oriole Park and around the city from the 2010 season.  ALL for cheap. Jerseys (BP) were about $50 last year (all gameworn) with tons of stuff ranging from $10 to probably upwards of triple digits (for signed stuff). And trust me, as a guy who has barely any money and hesitates to spend in the first place, there is a LOT of good stuff there for even myself.

-Season tickets. If you’re gonna be an O’s season ticket holder, get on it.  I’m a 29 game holder, though I plan on about 50-60 home games this coming season.  It’s totally worth it to have.  If you want reasons, I’ll give you lots.  Just hit me up.

-Roadtrips.  Planning on some trips for this season.  So far, in my 3 years as a TRUE fan (not just a Baltimoron who knows the O’s exist), I’ve upped my game each year.  So 2011 brings me to other cities.  Planning on (if all goes well): Toronto, Cleveland, Pittsburgh, and DC.  No Spring Training this year, mainly because that would cost double what the other trips cost, and frankly, I’m gonna be really busy anyways until the season starts.  But if anybody wants to sponsor me going, I’d be glad to show you how to maneuver around the ballpark down there for the best experience.

-Fundraisers.  2011 brings back another year where we all can help others.  There is Zack Hample’s annual collection (which I am a proud supporter of), Romeo’s SPCA fundraisers (which I will be putting more information up on here very soon about), and soon to come are some fundraisers from me and Zevi (if you don’t know him, well, he’s my partner in crime).  More info to come.

-My status: Many people knew I was at The University of Akron this past Fall.  Well, I’m not anymore.  Had some great experiences there, but the program needs I have were not where they needed to be, so I needed a switch.  I will be at school locally in Baltimore for the upcoming Spring, and have NO idea where I will be in the Fall.  I do some random work for different jobs, and along with the Orioles/sports writing, I am an intern with a Baltimore based magazine as well.  Lots to keep me busy.

-Oriole Park.  I have been down there 4 times since the end of last season, so it’s been fun to see some of the progression of how the new seats have come into place.  They replaced ALL of the seats in the LF lower box, all the upper deck, and all of the club level.  Oh yeah, the Eutaw St. bleachers as well. Total seat count cut by a few thousand, but it will hopefully be worth it.  Will share some pictures soon.  Some fun stuff to see.

-MLS Draft.  Yeah, I went there.  This THURSDAY, JANUARY 13TH, at the Convention Center downtown is the MLS SuperDraft.  It starts around noon I believe.  I think it’s open to the public, if I’m not mistaken.  I will be there.  Akron won the College Cup this year (NCAA D1 soccer championship (beating schools like Cal, Michigan, and Louisville) and 7 of the Zips are expected to be drafted, many in the first round, if not top 10.  I’ll maybe do an entry on that after the draft, but who knows.  If you’re curious about college soccer or the Zips, I’d be glad to chat.  Their star midfielder’s name is Anthony Ampaipitakwong. Darlington Nagbe, another midfielder/attacker, won college soccer’s MVP award (Hermann Award).  That’s all you need to know.

-Oriole Park.  Gate times.  BP times.  Talking with people, it’s obvious that ballhawks and other fans would love to get into Oriole Park earlier to see more of the O’s hit, especially more than the usually depressing 4th group hit, unless it randomly contains Adam Jones (which it did on many occasions last year).  Well, there is news to come on that.  Things may change a bit, and I will let you know as soon as I do.  Had started a petition about it, but may not be using it anymore if the O’s will be helpful on their own (which may be happening).  Stay tuned.

Expect more soon.  I have different updates of all sorts to put out there, so will be on that.

Oh yeah, and Ronnie Deck is returning as Orioles bullpen catcher. That’s why you should support the 2011 Orioles.

Emotions Flying High in The Bronx

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Today has been an emotional day.  Didn’t sleep much after working on my website
a lot last night.  Today, came home from
working to watch the 1 o clock O’s game, only to find out a bunch of things.  The umps are being paid off, every single Yankee
hitter takes steroids, and word is th
at (reported/speculated by The Sun and Brittany Ghiroli of Orioles.com) Trembley managed his last game today most likely.

 

The recurring happening of today was
home plate umpire Mike DiMuro giving the Orioles the worst calls in the world
while expanding CC Sabathia’s strike zone to be almost as wide as the Yankee ace
himself.

 

Bottom of the 1st,
Millwood issued a walk right away to Jeter. 
Swisher followed that up with a single. 
Jeter proceeded to steal 3rd, realizing that Millwood was not
consistently checking back to 2nd to see him there.  Tatum made the throw to 3rd to try
and pick off Jeter, but with the perfectly located throw for the tag, Tejada
overran the bag after catching the ball running in to get it and just kept
going.  Stellar defense, right?  Then, the first obvious bad call on the day came
when Millwood went into his windup to throw and his spike got stuck in the
dirt, so he proceeded to stumble forward, still releasing the ball towards home
plate.  2nd base umpire Jim Reynolds
came in a bit delayed with a balk call. 
C’mon man.  The inning ended after
Teixeira struck out, A-roids hit a fly ball (advancing Swisher to 3rd),
Cano hit a double over Jones head is left center, and Posada finally struck out
to end the inning

 

The top of the 2nd really
started the frustrations with DiMuro. 
While Millwood usually gets high in the zone fastball strikes, but wasn’t
getting anything today, Sabathia came out throwing pitches even more out of the
zone and being called for strikes.  With a
full count, a pitch low and inside (almost hit the dirt) passed Ty
Wigginton.  He tossed his bat back and started
jogging to 1st before hearing the strikeout call, and walked even farther,
being outright about his opinion of the strike being called on a pitch almost
in the dirt by his feet.

 

Bottom of the 2nd came,
where Cervelli drew a 4-pitch walk off of Millwood.  2 of the 4 pitches would be strikes to most
umps.  Millwood, knowing how to deal with
this in a better way than just argue, started using lots of offspeed stuff against
the next guys, getting a strikeout against Gardner and eventually out of the
inning with no earned runs.

 

The last note I have on the day is
that Jones hit a homerun to left field on a Sabathia pitch low and in.

 

After that, the same crap
continued with the umps.  Today was the
first day I was actually P.O. with an Orioles game.  Been put down before, but not like this.  Took my attention away even more when news
broke about Trembley losing his job soon, so note taking was becoming a lost cause.

 

With a 6-1 deficit, Wigginton got
only the 2nd hit off of Sabathia on the day in the 7th besides Jones’
HR earlier, followed up by a Luke Scott bomb to the upper deck in right field.

 

Markakis lost his “hitting streak”
(wasn’t even 10 games so I don’t know if I consider it to be a streak).  Not one Oriole struck out more than
once.  Instead, 7 individuals struck out
once each.  At least we didn’t have a
horrendous day with RISP since we didn’t have men on 2nd and 3rd
to even get the chance to blow chances.

 

Millwood had a bad day for him,
not just because he didn’t get a win. 
Moving to 0-6 on the year, he only got through 5.2 innings on 115
pitches (only 67 for strikes).  He gave
up 6 runs on 10 hits (including 2 HRs) with a 5:4 K:BB ratio.  Berken came in to finish the 6th and
went through the 7th, only allowing a hit and recording a strikeout.  Ohman barely got through the 8th, allowing
a hit and walk, but went back to his old ways of allowing no runs.  For the 6th game in a row, we didn’t
need to pitch in the bottom of the 9th.

 

This all compared to Sabathia, who
finished with 7 IP.  He let up only 3
hits, but with 2 of them being home runs, allowed 3 runs on the day with a 7:1
K:BB ratio (Atkins drew that walk!).  Joba
threw a perfect 8th, and Mariano finished it with an adventurous 9th.  Jones, of course, being so clutch once again;
struck out with men on 2nd and 3rd.

 

I had a lot of this written up by
the middle of the 8th, and by the middle of the 9th, had
finished most of it.  When we got two men
on, I was getting really excited about the chance to rewrite it all.  I should know better than to always get my
hopes up to just let myself down every damn time.

 

Game over.  3-6 loss. 
8 game losing streak coming into a 9 game homestand against the Red Sox,
Yankees, and Mets, and minus Trembley most likely.  You know there
are issues when you get score 8 runs in a 6 game roadtrip, and also allow Brett Gardner to hit a home run.

 

Very down day.  Not too much to say.  Will be doing a post tomorrow definitely on
Millwood and Wigginton and some bits all about them.

 

Will post about Trembley either
tonight or tomorrow hopefully.  Website
is coming up soon, domain was purchased (2131andBeyond.com) and will be worked
on a lot now.  I will be at the first 2
Red Sox games, then a trip to college for a program there for a few days, the last
Yankee game at home, and the whole Mets series. 
Will try to post between it all, but will be difficult.  Be excited for the new site!  Will have tons of posts, new sections (like
High Socks Watch), and even contests for Orioles stuff and autographs once I
get enough followers.

 

Good day/night to all.

 

O yea, Tejada made a huge diving
grab in the bottom of the 8th that Teixeira hit down the line with
men on 1st and 2nd. 
He got the out at 2nd and saved a run or two from
scoring.  Whoopee.  So he kept the deficit at 3 so that Mariano could
get the save, I guess.

Gonna Stay Quiet… for now at least

Tons of rumors going around about today’s game.  No, not about if the Orioles could pull off a miracle win against CC in New York, but about the manager position.  People saying today could be Trembley’s last game.

I have made it clear that I support him, but with the few issues this season, it may just be worth it to change the spot up for the sake of shutting fan’s up about it since he is obviously not the future here.  The O’s play at 1 today, then make the trip home for the Red Sox tomorrow night at Camden Yards.  Today being an afternoon game would give a new manager time to meet the team (if needed), or if it is someone like Datz or Samuel, get to talk with the guys and establish things like plans and all.

Not gonna say much now.  Will update after the game.  Will still be writing about Wigginton and all that I said I would in the past entry.

Update: I purchased the website 2131andbeyond.com, and am working with Jordan of oriolesprospects.com to make it happen.