Orioles vs. Twins 4/21/11

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Thursday’s game marked the last non-prime Orioles game in April, meaning the last batting practice where there weren’t hundreds of
Yankees/Red Sox fans everywhere.

 

I got to the park around 4:30, met up with Tim and Ben, and
we all got in by 5 (as usual).

Ball Chart 42111

My first
ball of the day was a Mark Reynolds home run off the wall in the aisle behind
section 84.  The ball was crushed, and
with the sun in our eyes, both Matt and I ran up the stairs toward it, but I
happened to be better positioned for it off the bounce.

 

Some shots of BP:

 

Orioles Batting Practice 42111 1

Orioles Batting Practice 42111 2

 

Brian Matusz got his hair cut from that long shagginess he
had before:

 

Brian Matusz and Jake Arrieta 42111

 

I got ball 2 down the 3rd base line.  I was there attempting to get a toss up from
Denard Span and some other Twins around, and Fox hit the ball straight
foul.  It hit off the cement of the wall,
whizzed past my head, hit a chair, then a railing, and ended up high up three
sections away.  I raced up there, as did
Ben and Tim, and I was lucky enough to find it in a seat first.  Here is the path it took (how I remember it):

 

Jake Fox Foul Ball Batting Practice 42111

 

The ball looked awesome. 
Was totally shaved on one part from hitting off the pavement part of the
wall:

 

Baseball scuff marks 42111

 

It is still in tact like that now.  I will hold onto that one forever.

 

When the Twins came up to hit, the LF seats filled up a bit,
and when Thome and Morneau came up to hit, I ran over to the flag court in RF after
seeing the show they put on the day before.

 

Oriole Park Flag Court 42111.jpg

 

I loved Thome growing up (as an Indians fan), so I really
wanted to catch one of his HRs.  Well, I
did.  Ball 3 on the day was a Thome shot
to the back corner of the flag court.

 

BP ended.  I hung out
with new friend Ben from New York three rows behind the Twins dugout for the
first few innings.

 

Jeremy Guthrie Jim Thome Home Run 42111 1

Jeremy Guthrie Jim Thome Home Run 42111 2

 

The 1st pic is Guthrie pitching to Thome.  That pitch there was the one he hit his home
run on, then the 2nd pic is him touching home.

 

I left soon after and moved to left field, but saw Ben a few
more times randomly throughout the night.

 

In left field, I sat with Tim and Ben by the spot where Vlad
hit his HR the night before that Tim caught.

 

The Orioles lost.

 

Spent post game out by the players lot with the group of
Brittany, Donna, Nick, Todd, Amanda, and a bunch of kids who chased down Brian
Roberts’ truck.

 

Off to the park for a rainy game (supposedly) against the
Yankees. I could easily get shut out today in baseballs for the first time in
two years if there’s no BP.

 

Out of all the hawks at this game, none got more than 3.  Tim and I each got 3, but otherwise everybody got just one or two.  Slow day, I guess.

Season stats:

 

Baseballs: 23 (12 hit, 5 on fly, 8
toss up, 3 found)

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

Orioles home games attended: 8

Orioles total games attended: 8

Total MLB games attended: 8

Total baseball games attended
(MLB+MiLB): 8

Rainouts: 1

 

Ticket and Baseballs 42111

 

I leave you with this picture of the oddest hairstyle I have
ever seen at the ballpark:

 

DSCF3019.JPG

 

Here it is a little closer if you couldn’t spot it
(somehow):

 

DSCF3019zoom.jpg

Orioles vs. Twins 4/20/11

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So after two nights of Passover celebrating with family, I
was back at the ballpark on Wednesday. 
The O’s have a 10 game home stand now, so if I still make it to 7-8 of
the games, I’ll be satisfied.

 

I brought my fancy-shmancy camera to this game to get some
photos for the websites I’m a part of (Baltimore Sports Report and
Orioles-Nation) as well as for myself, but I can’t upload those photos here for
a bit.  Why?  It’s a Sony camera.  Sonys use a special memory card called Pro
Duo or something. So I only have an SD slot on my computer, so long story
short, I have to wait until I get to my house sometime to get the cord for the
camera.  Till then, I will use a few pics
from my phone and also some sent to me by Zack Hample (because I asked him for
some).  You can see more from the game as
well as more pics including me and others over at his blog.

 

So I hopped on the light rail a few minutes after 4, and
without knowing it, Tim, his friend Sean, and Zevi were all on the train then.  We got down to the park by 4:20 (on 4/20) and
waited for gates to open.  By the way,
the Orioles won’t let you trade tickets down anymore (as in prime to not
prime).  Odd.  I’d rather not rant about it here because,
well, it pissed me off that I had to argue with the box office guy for like 5
minutes and accomplish nothing.

 

Once inside, we ran around (as always) and saw Zack waiting
at the opposite gate on Eutaw Street.  He
tried this just two weeks ago on 4/7
and we laughed at him then for his gate not opening on time.  Maybe he will learn that that gate is just
bad luck 🙂

 

Oriole Park ball snag locations 42011

 

I got ball 1 on a Lee home run that tipped off a guy’s
hand.  I was running over to the spot, it
hit off him, and I flipped my bare hand up for the grab.  Was good to see my reflexes still work.

 

Ball 2 was a Reynolds home run on the fly.  I had to leap high for it, but overall just a
nice catch and that was that.

 

No balls during Twins BP, though at the end, Scott Baker
tossed me one (ball 3).  It has to be the most
random baseball I have ever gotten.  As
the Twins pitchers were running in, he picked up a stray ball on the warning
track, and with a line of screaming kids and Twins fans in the front row, he
chucked it up to me about 10 rows up.  I
wasn’t yelling or even holding my glove up, and when I got it, I turned around
to make sure I hadn’t just robbed a kid or anything.  I went over to ask Rick Gold who it was and if I had robbed someone, and he said I
hadn’t and that it looked to be completely random.  Cool.

 

The fans/ballhawks at this game gathered for some photos (taken by Jona, thanks for sending them Zack so my blog didn’t have to be picture-less):

22_ballhawk_gathering.JPG23_ballhawk_gathering.JPG26_ballhawk_gathering.JPG28_ballhawk_gathering.JPG

Everyone in the photo above (from left to right):

1. Rick Gold

2. Dave Stevenson

3. Me

4. Zack Hample

5. Tim

6. Sean

7. Zevi

8. Alex K

9. Ben

10. Matt

I had talked with Ben a bit during BP.  Hadn’t met him before, so we just talked about some differences in hawking between Baltimore and New York.  I met Alex last year when Joe Faraguna was in town (for the Twins series, ironically).

I then went over to the first base side to attempt to get a
warmup ball.  Brian Roberts always throws
with Markakis, and Roberts always ends up with it to give to a kid.  The other pair always includes Adam Jones,
and today he was throwing with Robert Andino, who chucked it to me (ball 4) at the
dugout as he walked in.  I screamed
“ROBERT” like 10 times, so I guess it paid off.

 

I spent the first few innings taking some nice photos
sitting close by the dugout (the usher said I could!).  Vlad hit a home run in the bottom of the 3rd,
and as I’m taking a photo of him swinging, Zevi taps my shoulder and says “I
think Tim caught that!”.  We then saw Tim
celebrating on the scoreboard, so we soon after left the seats to go find him.

 

Well, he had caught it.

 

 

VladHR42011.jpeg

 

Very, very cool.

 

We stayed in LF for the rest of the game.  I went over to the bullpen a few times to
take pictures and say hello to Donna.  Joe
(who works for MASN) came to say hey.  It
was a chill rest of the night.  We went
out to the player lot after and I got Carl Pavano to sign my ticket (pictured
below).  And that was that.

 

42011balls2.jpeg

 

A funny happening post game with a Twins fan; the drunk fan
came over and told us a story:

 

“I was like, “Hey Perkins, you making pancakes over there?”
and all these Twins fans got ********** and were like, “PERKINS ISN’T JUST A
BREAKFAST RESTAURANT!” then I got timid and walked away.”

 

Oh yeah, and Jim Hunter complimented Tim on his catch, and
Fred Manfra explained to us that his computer shattering sounded like a bomb
going off.

 

Fun times.  Now back
to the ballpark for the 4th game of this Twins series…

 

Season stats:

 

Baseballs: 20 (9 hit, 4 on fly, 7
toss up, 3 found)

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

Orioles home games attended: 7

Orioles total games attended: 7

Total MLB games attended: 7

Total baseball games attended
(MLB+MiLB): 7

Rainouts: 1

 

Passover feels like an 8 day losing streak

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Happy Passover to those who celebrate (Passover is 8 days long, for those who don’t know, and the Orioles are on an 8 game losing streak, hence my cheesy joke in the title. Heh.).  I wonder if any of the Jewish major leaguers celebrate at all.

baseball matzah

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How did the Jewish ballers do on
the first night of Passover?

 

·     
Kevin
Youkilis – 2-5, double, 2 RBIs, 2 runs scored

·     
Ian
Kinsler – 2-3, double, triple, run scored, 2 walks

·     
Ryan
Braun – 3-4, 2 RBIs, run scored, walk

·     
Danny
Valencia (vs. the O’s) – 2-4, RBI, 2 runs scored

·     
Sam Fuld
– 4-4, double, run scored

·     
Ike Davis
had the night off (Mets off day)

 

So current active Jewish major
leaguers went 13-20 (.650) with 4 XBH, 5 RBIs, and 7 runs scored.  That’s pretty damn impressive. 

 

How about the pitchers?  Jason Marquis pitched Sunday (7 IP, 2 ER),
but otherwise, no Jewish pitchers (SPs or RPs) took the mound on Monday.

 

In other news, the Orioles are
on an 8 game losing streak, and it’s not looking good.  But gotta fight on.  The O’s have a ten game home stand now, and I
am with my family for the first two nights of the holiday, and will be back at
the yard on Wednesday for the last 8 games (2 Twins, 3 Yankees, 3 Red
Sox).  If I can average 2 balls in those 8 games, I’ll be satisfied.

I was supposed to head out to a doubleheader on Sunday, but
some stuff got in the way and I stayed back and watched the Orioles lose on
TV.  The doubleheader options were:

 

·     
Hagerstown Suns (18 innings of Bryce Harper?!)

·     
Frederick Keys

·     
Bowie Baysox

·     
Washington Nationals

 

There were tons of doubleheaders to choose from.

 

Well, that’s it for now. 
I got a new desktop background:

 

 

Adam Jones background desktop Orioles

 

I will try to find the website I grabbed that off of, but
props to the guy who created it.

 

See you all soon. I may post tonight on my Orioles thoughts
and reactions for the season so far. Depends how I’m feeling after a night of drinking
[wine] [ritually, of course].

Orioles vs. Rangers 4/10/11 (Personal Toss-Up Record)

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If you’re here to read about the whole Jose Valverde
spitting incident, check out that post
here
.

 

 

So after I facepalmed during Saturday’s game, my legs were
quite beat up, so I couldn’t run around too much on Sunday.  I got to the game late (for me) and met up
with Matt outside the gates at around 11:15 (open at 11:30) where he informed
me that there was batting practice set up. 
Surprising.

 

So we got in, he ran around, and I walked.  Couldn’t bend my knees too much, so had to
take it easy.  They hit some home runs
during BP, a bunch within good distance for me to snag, but I had to let them
go.  It wasn’t fun trying to go up and
down stairs, so I had to lay off them. 
Matt found a few and caught a bunch.

 

Here’s Buck talking in the outfield with Jason Berken and
Jeremy Accardo:

 

Buck Showalter Jason Berken Jeremy Accardo 41011

 

My first ball, though, was from the Rangers bullpen catcher Josh Frasier who tossed me and another guy the two balls sitting in the
Rangers pen when he got up there.  The
other guy also caught a few of the HRs that were close to me.  We talked a bit, and he was really nice to
discuss some baseball with while I hobbled around.

 

The Rangers came out to throw, and I thought my only chance
to snag on the day would be toss ups.  So
I went over to the 3rd base line where the position players were
throwing.  Anybody else there stood by
the pitchers, not realizing the position guys would be finished fastest.

 

Andres Blanco was throwing with somebody, and when they were
finished messing around throwing side arm, I held my glove up and he chucked me
the ball without even asking.

 

Mason Tobin was throwing with Alexi Ogando, and Ogando
overthrew a ball that bounced in the stands. 
I scooped it up, offered it back, but they said to keep it.  I handed it to a fan next to me who had an Alexi Ogando card in hand.  I figured that was worthy of a baseball that he technically threw.  The odd part after that was that Tobin finished
with their ball, and he tossed it to me. 
Interesting.  Here’s Tobin about
20 seconds before the toss up:

 

Mason Tobin Rangers 41011

 

Brandon Webb, who had a weird photo shoot by the dugout just
before the game, was in the outfield running:

 

Brandon Webb Rangers 41011

 

BP got a bit crowded, so I chilled in the LF corner for any
bloop homeruns down the line.  I didn’t
get any more balls on the day, though 4 toss ups was my personal best in any game). 
Here was my view for most of Rangers BP:

 

Orioles Rangers Batting Practice 41011

 

The kid you see there is… well… very confused.

 

Indianapolis Colts Boston Red Sox 41011

 

He’s wearing a Colts jacket and Red Sox hat. What?!

 

Josh Hamilton was signing:

 

Josh Hamilton Signing 41011

 

So I wiggled through the huge group of people, the security guy on the field (seen above in orange) messed with me a bit (we talk with him every day, he points out Easter Eggs to me on occasion), and got Hamilton on
the ball I snagged from Blanco earlier.

 

Josh Hamilton Autograph Baseball 41011

 

Vladimir Guerrero received his 2010 Silver Slugger and
Comeback Player of the Year Awards pre-game (assumingly scheduled then against
the Rangers):

 

Vladimir Guerrero Silver Slugger Comeback Player of the Year Award 41011

Vladimir Guerrero Silver Slugger Comeback Player of the Year Award 41011 2

 

Ian Kinsler and Adrian Beltre were warming up by me, but I
got neither ball (obviously).

 

Ian Kinsler Adrian Beltre 41011.jpg

 

Matt headed who knows where, and I headed out to section 86,
where I planned to chill all game and not kill myself over home run balls like
the day before.

 

I settled at the break in the bullpens, saluted to Ronnie,
and the game got going.  Nick joined me in section 86, Matt came
soon after, and it was a sunny, relaxed afternoon.

 

Jake Fox was oddly in left field:

 

Jake Fox Right Field 41011

 

My view of the Rangers bullpen during the game:

 

Rangers Bullpen 41011.jpg

 

Orioles bullpen doing warmups and such:

 

Baltimore Orioles Bullpen 41011.jpg

 

Ronnie Deck looking awesome as usual (though he needs a retro
bird helmet):

 

Ronnie Deck Orioles 41011

 

More of the bullpen just chilling:

 

Baltimore Orioles Bullpen 41011 2

 

The Orioles lost. 
Guthrie, back from the hospital (pneumonia) threw six innings of one run
ball, but we scored no runs, the Rangers tacked on a two run shot off of Jim
Johnson, and that was that.

 

But, in the end, this is what we had overall:

 

American League East Standings 41011

 

I will be back at Oriole Park next Wednesday for the last
two games on the Twins series.  Missing
Monday and Tuesday for holiday.  But will
be at [hopefully] eight of the ten games during the home stand.

 

 

Season stats:

 

Baseballs: 16 (7 hit, 3 on fly, 5
toss up, 3 found)

Autographs: 2 (Scherzer, Guerrero,
Oliver)

Orioles home games attended: 6

Orioles total games attended: 6

Total MLB games attended: 6

Total baseball games attended (MLB+MiLB):
6

Rainouts: 1

 

3 baseballs pictures (gave one away):

Loot 41011

 

 

 

 

Follow me on Twitter:
@2131andBeyond

 

Orioles vs. Rangers 4/8/11 (Rainout) & 4/9/11 (Doubleheader)

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If you’re here to read about the whole Jose Valverde
spitting incident, check out that post
here
.

 

 

So I showed up to the park on Friday not expecting anything
exciting.  It had been pouring all day
and I already had word from a friend at the stadium that BP would for sure not
happen.  Either way, I headed down around
4:15 and stood in line.  Eventually, Tim,
Ben, Brittany, and some others showed up. 
Zack Hample left town, and he
made a good choice doing so.

 

When we got in, there were some Rangers throwing:

 

Texas Rangers Pitchers 48.jpg

 

I got a ball from some athletic trainer with them, then
handed it to a little Rangers fan standing by us (it was wet and dirty and
meant a LOT more to her).  Tim, Ben, and
Matt each got one (I think Matt actually got 2) as well.

 

The Orioles came out to throw

 

Baltimore Orioles Pitchers 4811

 

But I didn’t really bother asking for things.  What was cool was that Ronnie [Deck] finished
throwing with Arrieta, and when all the pitcher went in, he came over to talk
with me for a good ten minutes, saying he was waiting for Tillman.  We talked about everything from his uniform
to Spring Training to everything else random you can imagine. That was pretty
cool.

 

I then spent time with some people in Café 54, by the
bullpen, and on club level (including putting high socks on, my original pair
were *soaked*).

 

Oriole Park Tarp 4811

 

We heard at one
point that there were some Rangers sliding on the tarp, including Josh
Hamilton.  From club level, we ran out to
see it, but missed them.  You can see
videos of it here (this one is taken by the Rangers bullpen catcher in the dugout), here,
and here.

 

Oriole Park Tarp 2 4811

 

The game was postponed, it was announced that there would be
a straight doubleheader the next day, so I called up Todd Cook who would be
coming to town, and headed back to my place.

 

Oh, and I got Darren Oliver’s autograph:

 

Darren Oliver Autograph

 

Season stats:

 

Baseballs: 10 (6 hit, 2 on fly, 2
toss up, 2 found)

Autographs: 3 (Scherzer, Guerrero,
Oliver)

Orioles home games attended: 3

Orioles total games attended: 3

Total MLB games attended: 3

Total baseball games attended
(MLB+MiLB): 3

Rainouts: 1

 

 

So I got down to the Orioles doubleheader on Saturday around
2.  The gate times were confusing, Zevi
and I ended up having to run around the stadium when nobody else did… it was
just bad.

 

There were a ton of balls in the stands, and Matt found like
5.  I found one.  Then caught a Mike Napoli HR during BP on the
fly.  But that was it for me.  And I must have given both away, because I
have no idea where they are at this point. 
Sometimes I just hand them off when I get them if they are too dirty to
get signed and have nothing interesting that I would want to keep them for, so
I assume that is the case.

 

Here’s a shot I took during BP:

 

Oriole Park Batting Practice 4911

 

In this one, we have:

 

1. Todd and Tim Cook (Check out Todd’s game entry here and follow Todd’s Twitter)

2. Dave Stevenson

 

For sure click on the Cooks name there to check out their
blog.  I met Todd and Tim last season,
and have stayed in touch with Todd ever since for baseball stuff, and I
currently serve as his Oriole Park ticket broker.  More on those two later.

 

Here is a panorama he took after BP but before the first game.  I’m in it there tossing my glove.  I was trying to toss it into his picture, but you can’t tell that here since I had no idea he was doing a wide lens panorama.  Either way, pretty cool. (click to enlarge as usual)

Panorama Oriole Park 4911.jpeg

So Zach Britton was starting for the Orioles:

 

Zach Britton 4911

 

And he put on a show. 
Pitched 7.2 shutout innings as the O’s beat the Rangers in game one,
5-0.

 

Nick Markakis Adam Jones Luke Scott Celebrate Jump 4911

 

During the game, I hung out with Kris, Zevi (I’m not linking him every time I mention his name,
sorry), Andrew, and some others I’m
sure (I just am forgetful).  It was fun.

 

Yes, I did facepalm during this game.  Here’s
the video
if you must.  There’s a bit
of a background story to my frustrations behind it, but I’m not going to openly
start attacking people on here.  But
yeah.  I shredded both of my knees, my
right one the most, and was bleeding all over my legs.  It wasn’t pretty.  But we fight on.  And it was weird because the pitch before the
home run, I said to somebody “let’s see if Reynolds can make Earl Weaver happy
with a 3 run home run” and BAM.

 

So then there was a short break between games, but we
settled back into section 86 for the second game.  This time, Todd and Tim Cook, who had been
busy and exploring during game one, spent most of game two with us.  Tim, I must say, is a very energetic a funny
little guy.  Tells some great jokes.  And Todd talked with me/us for most of the 2nd
game, about all things baseball really. 
There were multiple innings where I don’t remember what really happened
since we were having some fun talks. 
Baseball is finally back.

 

The Orioles got crushed in this game by the score of
1-13.  Yeah, the Rangers flat out mashed
(including another Nelson Cruz home run). 
Arrieta was off his game, but it could have been because of Jake Fox
catching.  Who knows.  Though Fox looked awesome with his retro bird
helmet plus the black uni:

 

Jake Fox Retro Oriole Bird Helmet

 

 

So yeah.  Was an
interesting day, spent a ton of it just relaxing around talking to people
watching a game, and didn’t go too crazy with things.  Then I went on Sunday (post coming soon), and
that’s that.

 

Season stats:

 

Baseballs: 12 (7 hit, 3 on fly, 1
toss up, 3 found)

Autographs: 2 (Scherzer, Guerrero,
Oliver)

Orioles home games attended: 5

Orioles total games attended: 5

Total MLB games attended: 5

Total baseball games attended
(MLB+MiLB): 5

Rainouts: 1

 

 

Oh, and I’m still holding Adam Jones to this.  But it was cool just
yesterday when I told him he should
visit the MLB Fan Cave, and he replied that
he already was going.  Then MLB put up
this video of it.  Ryan Wagner, one of
the cave dwellers, is an O’s fan.  He’s
pretty darn cool.  I enjoy following the shenanigans
of the MLB Dream Job here, and you should, too.

 

Oh yeah, and be sure to check out the flyer and info for the May 8th Orioles game fundraiser!

 

And in case you don’t know, both Nolan Reimold and Manny Machado are owning their respective minor league leagues (that sounds funny).

 

Follow me on Twitter:
@2131andBeyond

Orioles vs. Tigers 4/6/11 and 4/7/11

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So I usually do single game by game entries, but between
midterms this week and long days at the park (get there around 3:30, leave at
11:30), I have been squeezed for time. 
So, I did the Opening Day entry
earlier in the week, followed by last night the quick post on the Jose Valverde spitting incident.  Here are my game entries for the 2nd
and 3rd home games of the season to finish up the Tigers series.

 

 

So Wednesday was a relaxed night at the ballpark.  Attendance went from sold out on Monday to
12,451 that night, so after BP, we just chilled in the outfield seats.

 

I got there around 3:30, still don’t know why.

 

DSCF1442.JPG

 

Adam Jones tweeted at
me
offering to come in early, but he never got back at me, so that didn’t
happen.  Ballhawks and fans gathered with
me at the gate, and the day had begun. 
For a pic of the group, check out Zack Hample’s blog entry of the game (and the 2nd game) here.

 

So running around to BP, the first ball I snagged on the day
was a Mark Reynolds shot.  He hit it to a
section to the right of where I was standing, and Tim and I both ran towards it
as it hit the seats and rolled awkwardly through a row.  He was 2 rows down, I was right above it, so
I was able to reach over and grab it.  On
the board.  My goal on the day was 4 (to
even out with the 2 from the opener, since I want to average 3 this year), so
this was a quick start.

 

After that, I made two of my best snags ever.  The first was a Casper Wells home run that I
got only about 15 feet to my left, and with no fans fighting for it.  The reason it was special was because I
spaced it horribly, and had to leap and throw my arm back just to barely grab
it on the tip of my glove.  Got high
fives for that one.

 

The 3rd ball of the day was a Brandon Inge home
run that was a section over to my right. 
I ran a bit over, but saw it was landing in a group of people about 6
rows down, so I didn’t really make a move. 
The ball ended up missing everybody and hitting off a chair, flying high
in the air into another group of people to the right and a row in front of me.  I reached above them with my bare right hand,
tipped it up into the air above them all, and then jumped and grabbed it.  This one got me the most congratulatory
remarks I’ve ever gotten, and trust me, I don’t make that many nice catches, so
I was proud of this one.

 

That was it on the day for baseballs.  But 3 is good for me.  I honestly feel good as long as I don’t get
shut out, which hasn’t happened since the 2009 season.

 

And I like this one shot I took of Tillman, Matusz, and
Britton during BP:

 

DSCF1443.JPG

 

After BP, I ran over to where Max Scherzer was signing by
the dugout, and after he ignored me multiple times for wearing an O’s shirt, I
made a “we both hate the Yankees” comment, he smiled, and signed my ticket.

 

I ran over to the Orioles dugout hoping for a warm up
ball.  First, I stopped by where Vlad was
signing for a minute:

 

DSCF1449.JPG

 

And got him to sign an extra ball I had brought with me (I
usually bring a clean ball or two for this kind of situation):

 

DSCF1498.JPG

 

I didn’t get a 4th ball, but whatever.  I’m satisfied with 3 still.

 

Tim and Ben and I stayed out in left field for the entire
game.  Low attendance and lineups full of
right handed power (besides the O’s with Reynolds and Vlad, the Tigers have
Miguel Cabrera), we will be out there all season.  It was a chill night sitting out in the
middle of the LF seats.  Felt like
baseball season again.

 

Anyways, 4 HRs were hit to right or center field.  Awesome. 
Whatever.  And Zack Hample snagged
Alex Avila’s shot, so check out info on that on his blog post (linked at the
top).

 

I left in the 8th to go sit with Brittany and
Donna at Donna’s seats (Brittany has season tix next to the bullpen) that were…
well… beautiful.  To show, here are a few
pics from that view:

 

DSCF1454.JPG

DSCF1455.JPG

DSCF1456.JPGDSCF1458.JPG

        

 

So that was cool.

 

Though the Orioles lost their first
game of the season that night, it was still very relaxing to attend the
game.  Afterward, I went with Donna and
Britney out to the players’ lot.  I had
never gone there after games (mainly because I live in the city now, so I don’t
have to worry about rides or missing the subway or anything), but they
introduced me to it.  We waved to
players, talked, and got yelled at.  And
Jake Fox stopped his giant SUV to sign for everybody, though I didn’t get
that.  I got 2 pictures of him signing
from his car, but both are dark and blurry.

 

I then left, went home, and
crashed.  Class in the AM.

 

Stuffs:

 

DSCF1462.JPG

 

Season stats (after this game):

 

Baseballs: 5 (4 hit, 1 on fly, 1
toss up, 0 found)

Autographs: 2 (Scherzer, Guerrero)

Orioles home games attended: 2

Orioles total games attended: 2

Total MLB games attended: 2

Total baseball games attended
(MLB+MiLB): 2

 

 

Then Thursday hit.  I left class at 2, went back to my place to
do some things, and left around 3:15 for the game.  Got there by 3:45, and chilled outside the
gates again.  Zack Hample never showed
up, but that was because he was at the other gates (Ha!).  Ben and Tim came around 4.  Matt never showed up (turned out he was sick).

 

I said ha before because Zack went
to the other side since the run in is slightly shorter, but his gate opened a
full 30 seconds or so after ours, so we ran past him before he could even come
in.  It was funny.

 

Running in, I got one ball in foul
territory down the 1B line, and then Tom (security guard) pointed out another
in the seats down the 3B line, so I had 2 already before even reaching the LF
seats.

 

BP brought more photos of our young
pitchers.  This one of Matusz and Britton
talking with new pitching coach Mark Connor (I think that’s him):

 

DSCF1465.JPG

 

BP was empty for the first 25
minutes or so for us, which was nice:

 

Zack Hample and Tim Oriole Park 4711

 

In that picture, the people are:

 

1. Tim (going up the stairs to look
for easter eggs

2. Zack (recording notes and such
after Orioles BP ended)

 

I got some pictures of Justin
Verlander throwing some:

 

DSCF1468.JPG

DSCF1469.JPG

 

Jeremy Guthrie was back from the
hospital (he had pneumonia), pictured here talking with Verlander:

 

DSCF1472.JPG

 

I scooped up an Adam Jones home run
hit into an empty section, then caught a Brandon Inge home run on the fly in an
empty row later in BP.  Though it was
busier, nobody else made a play on that one.

 

And that was that.  I didn’t go for any autographs or extra
balls.  Just the 4 on the day.  Talked with my favorite ushers a bit and
wandered the concourse.  Oh, and got some
of the old Orioles to sign cards.  They
do that every Monday and Thursday home game. 
Got Tippy Martinez, Fred Valentine, and Bill Swaggerty.  Woot.

 

The game was cold.  Tim, Ben, and I again sat out in left field,
but this time next to the bullpen.  Ben
hit 12 balls on the day, including multiple at the pen, so we just chilled
there.  Though on most righty batters, we
got up and moved to ends of rows to prepare for HR balls.  Was quite funny actually how much we never
settled into actual spots, though we got no balls, the seats were so empty that
moving around was easy.  Finally, though,
a HR was hit to LF (Adam Jones’ shot), but it was a line drive smash down the
line, and way out of reach for where we were.

 

Tim and Ben danced like white kids,
Ronnie said hey, and we just had another chill night at the game.

 

Brad Penny pitched for the Tigers:

 

DSCF1477.JPG

 

And Chris Tillman for the Orioles:

 

DSCF1480.JPG

 

The end of the game brought an
Orioles come from behind W, but it also brought us Jose Valverde spitting on a fan in the 8th inning.  Click on that for more info.

 

Here’s my loot (space in the
baseballs is the Jones home run that I tossed to a kid after BP ended):

 

DSCF1497.JPG

 

Season stats:

 

Baseballs: 9 (6 hit, 2 on fly, 1
toss up, 2 found)

Autographs: 2 (Scherzer, Guerrero)

Orioles home games attended: 3

Orioles total games attended: 3

Total MLB games attended: 3

Total baseball games attended
(MLB+MiLB): 3

 

And I am leaving in just a couple
of minutes for the park.  The O’s take on
the undefeated Rangers this weekend, and I plan to be at all 3 games, win or
lose.  The weather is crummy out, so
probably no BP, but these games can bring some good fortune and fun at times,
so I’m there.

Jose Valverde Spits on Fan

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So aside from the regular game posts, I had to get up a bit
about this.  I posted it on Twitter, and
tons of people seemed intrigued, so I figured I’d shoot up this story quick.

So.

 

Here is what I witnessed. 
All is fact, and anything that I cannot confirm will be noted as
something I’m guessing (or of the sort).

 

During the bottom of the 8th inning at Oriole
Park earlier tonight (April 7), Jose Valverde approached two fans and spit at
one of them, shooting his wad of gum at the pair.

 

It started in the middle of that frame when the two fans
walked up to the break in the bullpen walls at Camden Yards during the
Tigers/Orioles game and started shouting at the Tigers sitting on the bullpen
bench.  My friend Tim heard one of them
(in an orange shirt, and though I can’t confirm it was an Orioles shirt, I saw
it as Orioles orange opposed to Tigers orange) shouting something about Joel
Zumaya.  As we walked away to grab seats
at the end of the rows (hoping for a HR ball), we looked over from about 20
feet away, and Valverde approached the fans at the edge of the pen.  Of course, my camera was in my bag a section
away.  But, here is the vantage point of
the fans.  I took this as the game ended
afterward, as you can see the Tigers pitchers walking away.  But it shows where they were and where Jose
came to that front corner to stand close to them:

 

DSCF1496.JPG

What we saw was Jose walking over to these shouting fans,
looking quite intimidating and a bit PO’d in my opinion.  As he got there, said a few words, then
signaled with two fingers for the fan (or both) to come closer.  Within 10 seconds, he followed that by
spitting at the fan (or both (again, I don’t know what they really said that
ticked him off or if it was just one of them or what)).  It was a legit spitting motion at them, in
which he spit a huge wad of gum at them. 
Here are two pictures I took of the gum on the ground of the bullpen
below (the space between the Tigers pen area and the seats, as in the ground of
the Orioles pen area).  The first is a
close up of the wad.  It was huge.  Second is zoomed out but quite blurry.

 

DSCF1494.JPG

 

DSCF1495.JPG

 

Valverde, after the spit, turned around and walked back to
his seat.  Fans around were shocked.  The two guys saw the cop in the bullpen
coming into the Tigers pen, so they ran out of the row, up the stairs, and out
of the section (not sure why, unless they said something horrible, since Jose
spit at them, and just to note, nobody saw the guys spit at Jose or make any
physical motions towards him, so it seemed to be words that provoked him).  The cop came all the way over to the same
spot Jose was standing during the incident, saw that they were gone, called
someone on his radio, and left.  So who
knows what happened there.

 

Witnesses:  I was with
my friends Tim and Ben for most of
the game, both of whom saw this.  Another
friend, Matt (and his friend) were
nearby and talking with us when we saw Valverde approach them, and they both
saw it.  The fans in the section who were
actually closest to the event all saw it, but had no new info as to what
happened when I asked besides what we saw.

 

 

So yeah.  Who knows
what will come of this.  If anything (Does
MLB suspend for such a thing? I mean, if it was at a player, there would be
suspension, so I don’t know why at a fan is any better or excusable. But again,
I do not know what was said, so I am just coming from the position of seeing
them what looked like heckling him and he did this. That’s it.).  Just wanted to share.

 

Valverde had a stomach bug earlier in the week.  Maybe about that?

 

And I got a few pics of him talking with Orioles pitcher
Mike Gonzalez during BP:

 

DSCF1470.JPG

 

And I hope to get game posts for Wednesday and Thursday’s
games up tomorrow, as I will be at all 3 games this weekend against the
undefeated Rangers.

 

 

Follow me on Twitter:
@2131andBeyond