6/23/09 @ Miller Park

The Brewers were finally back home. 
I had not attended a Brewers home game since June 9th. 

There was one problem from a ballhawking perspective, though…it was Little League Night at the ballpark.  Great for the little leaguers, bad for the ballhawks.

I had a game plan.

I would enter through Friday’s, grab a bite to eat and hopefully snag a few baseballs in the process.

I had a good friend with me at the ball game…

6_23_09 Twins vs. Brewers @ Miller Park 001.jpg

…that’s “Brewer Jamie” out on the Friday’s Bullpen patio.

That’s me getting amped up for some much needed BP…

6_23_09 Twins vs. Brewers @ Miller Park 003.jpg

…!!!!

BALL #1 came off the bat of PRINCE FIELDER.  It bounced around about 20 rows deep.
The effort it took to bend down and pick it up was the extent of the effort exerted claiming this one.

I noticed something funny…

6_23_09 Twins vs. Brewers @ Miller Park 019.jpg

…written on the sweetspot.

“NO POOPY PANTS”  

Good stuff.

At approx. 4:50 p.m., the Brewers ran off the field and the Twins came out to hit.
Usually, the Brewers hit until 5:30 p.m. for a 7:05 game. 

Not this day.  The thousands of Little Leaguers had to take the field at 5:45 p.m.  Therefore, the field had to be cleared.

 

Bring out the Twinkies.

An unknown Twins pitcher (possibly Nick Blackburn) fielded a ball near the wall. 
When he was below me, I said, “Can you toss one up?  The dirtier the better!”

He turned and tossed it up to me for BALL #2.

Little did I know…

6_23_09 Twins vs. Brewers @ Miller Park 002.jpg

…the ball had on a toupee!
As an added bonus, it was a commemorative ball.

BALL #3 was caught on the fly.  Thank goodness it didn’t touch the ground.  Thank goodness it didn’t touch anything except the bat of MICHAEL CUDDYER.

Out of box.
Into ball bag.
Into Coach’s hand.
Off bat.
Into my glove.

Take a look…

6_23_09 Twins vs. Brewers @ Miller Park 023.jpg

Holy pearl, Batman!

Soon, a ball was hit into the Brewers bullpen. 
It was near the wall where the glove-trick can be used.

I came…
6_23_09 Twins vs. Brewers @ Miller Park 007.jpg

     I saw…

6_23_09 Twins vs. Brewers @ Miller Park 008.jpg

I conquered…
6_23_09 Twins vs. Brewers @ Miller Park 010.jpg…BALL #4.

BALL #5 came via this fella…
matt guerrier.jpg

Twins pitcher MATT GUERRIER.

Soon after Mr. Guerrier tossed me that ball, this was the scene…
6_23_09 Twins vs. Brewers @ Miller Park 011.jpg…NO!!!  Come back!!

Eventually…
6_23_09 Twins vs. Brewers @ Miller Park 013.jpg…they were gone.

5 baseballs by 5:30 p.m.  With what should have been another hour to go. 
Oh, the possibilities.

Oh well.  It was Little Leaguers.  They deserved the opportunity to walk on the field and get “up close.”

The scene of little people…
6_23_09 Twins vs. Brewers @ Miller Park 016.jpg…wrapped all the way around the field.

While I was watching the parade, I ran into a few fellow ballhawks from the Chicago area…
6_23_09 Twins vs. Brewers @ Miller Park 017.jpg…Scott (left) and Chad (right).

We caught up for a bit, shared a few stories and strategies, then parted ways.

After about an hour, the Little Leaguers cleared the field.  It was game time.

In the top of the 2nd inning, with 2 outs and Joe Mauer at the plate, a fly ball was lifted to dead-center.  Brewers CF MIKE CAMERON camped underneath it on the warning track and made the squeeze.  I whistled for the baseball and “Cam” turned and fired a perfect strike right into my glove.  BALL #6-game used.

Thanks “Cam.”

That was it for the day.  No game home run chances.  No other baseballs.

The 6 baseballs snagged…
6_23_09 Twins vs. Brewers @ Miller Park 024.jpg…4 of which were commemorative.  Booyah!
The game ball is pictured bottom-right (I do not career # game balls because I use them for autographs).

2009 BALLHAWKING STATS

  • 6 total balls 6/23/09

2 batted baseballs (1 caught on fly)

3 toss-up baseballs

1 device


ATTENDANCE: 
42,008

2009 TOTAL BASEBALLS

4/7/09   = 5   baseballs
4/8/09   = 10 baseballs
4/9/09   = 10 baseballs
4/10/09 = 3   baseballs
4/11/09 = 5   baseballs
4/12/09 = 5   baseballs
4/13/09 = 11 baseballs
4/14/09 = 6   baseballs
4/21/09 = 5   baseballs
4/27/09 = 15 baseballs
4/28/09 = 9   baseballs
4/30/09 = 4   baseballs
5/01/09 = 7   baseballs
5/02/09 = 4   baseballs
5/08/09 = 11 baseballs
5/09/09 = 1   lousy ball
5/12/09 = 14 baseballs
5/13/09 = 12 baseballs
5/19/09 = 8   baseballs
5/22/09 = 3   baseballs
5/23/09 = 2   baseballs
5/26/09 = 3   baseballs
5/29/09 = 6   baseballs
5/30/09 = 5   baseballs
6/01/09 = 1   baseball
6/02/09 = 9   baseballs
6/09/09 = 4   baseballs
6/10/09 = 0   baseballs
6/11/09 = 2   baseballs
6/12/09 = 9   baseballs
6/23/09 = 6   baseballs
___________________

195 baseballs (31 games)
6.29 average per game

12 Comments

It is always so much fun for the kids to get on the field.

Julia
http://werbiefitz.mlblogs.com/

I am a bit confused about Friday’s Front Row. What time before games do the gates open? Does it fill up quickly? What time is the best to be there? What is surrounding the area? Sorry for the many questions.
http://riveravenue.mlblogs.com
Alex

happy, good to see you back snaggin its be a while, nice post.
-bettencourt

JULIA…
Absolutely. Heck, it’s a thrill even for the big people!

ALEX…
You can gain entrance to the stadium at any time on gameday through the Friday’s gate in left field. It fills up quickly as Miller Park averages over 38,000 a game. I usually show up around 4:30 for a 7:05 game. Be advised, you are somewhat restricted in this area until the regular gates open up. Not sure what you mean by surrounding area.

BETTENCOURT…
Thank you!

“Happy”

Nice haul bro! Man, I love how those gamers look! Gotta have one now. Sunday 6/28 the Padres are in town, already have tickets & am going to BP (obviously). What should I go for, fouls or HRs? I know what you’re gonna say, HRs. I’ve never gone for them before, so I’m a little gun-shy. I’ll let you know how it goes.
Brian
http://txbaseballfan.mlblogs.com

I love the look of that porch restaurant. We’re gonna have to check that out when we come town in August. I’m hoping we can get a odd Brewers writing ball when we’re in town too. Hopefully something like, “Welcome. Try the cheese.”
-Todd
http://cookandsonbats.mlblogs.com

That was a tough night for an out of town ballhawk. No BP that I was able to see and sweltering heat and humidity. I am definitely planning on going back next year and perhaps making it a yearly trip. I am just hoping for cooler weather next year! In the meantime, I have the stadium sauce as a reminder of my time at Miller. Thanks again for showing me around!

Good to see you back.

HOWIE
http://howie.mlblogs.com/

BRIAN…
Let’s see-somewhat meaningless foul balls or game home runs?? Hmm. Gotta go for the game home runs, bro.
Good luck!

TODD…
I might have to suggest that one. Funny stuff. How about “home of the beerbelly?”
Give me a heads up before you come to town.

BIG GLOVE…
It was my pleasure. Hope to see you again soon!

HOWIE…
Good to be back.

“Happy”

I’ll definitely give you a head’s up. Hey, did you see Adam Dunn’s mammoth blast in Baltimore today? Cleared the entire flag area with easy. Cleared Boog’s BBQ. Rattled around on Eutah Street. You can see me running for it in the highlight on mlb.com! I took a picture from where it ended up to show some perspective. I’ll post it tonight…or soon. It was an insane blast.
-Todd
http://cookandsonbats.mlblogs.com

Happy – when you have a chance, stop by my blog. I think you’ll like the pictures that are up! :-)

Julia
http://werbiefitz.mlblogs.com/

TODD…
OMG! I watched it on MLB.com. Wow. Looking forward to seeing the picture of its landing spot. Dunn deserves to have a few baseball plaques out on Eutaw Street. No doubt.

JULIA…
Great stuff. Scott’s a great sport, indeed.

“Happy”

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