Results tagged ‘ Reds vs Brewers ’

4/14/09 @ Miller Park

I’m getting a little behind on my blogging, so, this one will be short and sweet.

My wife and I went to the game together.  She’s my good luck charm.

When
the gates to the stadium opened at 530pm for the 705pm game, I raced in
and scoped out the Brewers bullpen.  There were about 6 baseballs lying
in the bullpen.  Three of them looked like potential glove trick
claims, so, I went to work. 

There was one problem, though. 
My string on the glove trick had balled up into a knot.  I was getting
a bit nervous trying to untangle the mess.  After about 3 minutes of
screwing around, I had it pretty much untangled. 

So, I went back to work.

BASEBALL #1, BASEBALL #2 and BASEBALL #3
were all, subsequently, snagged using the glove trick.  I was able to
reel all three up in about 5 minutes.  Would have been shorter if not
for the knot.  Not for the knot??  Whatever.  Either way, I felt like I
was cheating, but, not really.  You know what I mean? 

Anyhow,
I ran over to my section and began waiting for the big Reds lefties to
start cranking them out like they had the night before. 

Reds
OF LAYNCE NIX was shagging BP out in right field.  A baseball rolled
out to him and I asked him for it.  He turned and lobbed BASEBALL #4 to me.

The
first group of Reds lefty hitters soon disappointed, though.  So, I
headed over to left for Brandon Phillips.  It took about 5 minutes
before BRANDON PHILLIPS jacked one high into the air.  I was standing
in the left field loge bleachers (one of the toughest places to catch a
baseball when you have to move to get it). 

Row after row of bleachers along with scattered railings makes this place tough. 

I
hurdled three rows of bleachers moving backwards, all the while, keeping my eye
on the ball.  It was coming, I just had to get underneath it.  I would
snag that BP homer on the fly for
BASEBALL #5.

The
righty group also would disappoint, so, I moved back to right field for
Laynce Nix.  Laynce has big power and usually shows it during BP. 

Near
the end of Batting Practice, LAYNCE NIX would strike.  He hit a long,
towering fly that found a safe home right in the old mitt (on the fly)
for BASEBALL #6.

BP was over but I would soon make two new friends. 

Earlier
in the day, I had run into a gentleman at a local Milwaukee restaurant
about 20 minutes from the park.  He had told me his youngest boy was
having a birthday on this day.  The man said they had driven down from
their home in Northeast Wisconsin to take the boy and his older brother
to the Brewers game.  I told the man to meet me out by the big CITGO
pump in right-center field, that I would have something for his boys.

They stopped by the seats right when BP was finishing up.

Here’s the two boys proudly displaying their prize(s)…
4_14_09 Reds vs Brewers 001.jpgThat’s JOHN on the right and the birthday boy RYAN on the left.  Two great kids!!

After
BP, I made my usual rounds around the stadium.  When I saw Reds pitcher
Bronson Arroyo walking out to the bullpen to warm up, I headed over to
watch.

Here’s my overhead view of Bronson Arroyo making his warmup pitches…
4_14_09 Reds vs Brewers 002.jpg
4_14_09 Reds vs Brewers 003.jpgThe game contained nothing to write home to Mom about. 
When
the game starts, I usually stay in my spot.  If I’m out running around
for foul balls, I miss the game home runs.  Since, game home runs mean
everything to me, I stay focused on those instead of foul balls, 3rd
out balls, etc.  That doesn’t mean I don’t go for them from time to
time, it’s just that it’s pretty rare.

I had my throwback ball waiting for a game home run but the game home run never came.
Here’s a picture of my throwback ball…
4_14_09 Reds vs Brewers 006.jpgIf your stadium allows throwbacks, you have to have one.  I made the infield at Miller Park on a bounce, once, from my bleacher seats out in right center field.

Only a complete fool would throw back the actual game home run ball…only my opinion, of course.

Here’s a picture of a ballhawk’s best friend (on occasion)…
4_14_09 Reds vs Brewers 009.jpg                                     A little pick-me-up goes a long way.

At the end of the game, I was in position for an ump game ball.  Home plate umpire Chuck Meriweather walked off the field.  I was in the front row calling out his name.  He turned and looked at me and just walked off the field.  Oh well…I’ll try again.

When Francisco Cordero was walking off the field, he rolled a baseball on top of the dugout to me.  Too bad his aim and his tact was way off.  A guy about 5 feet to my right intercepted it.

I did manage to snag a bag of sunflower seeds from the Reds batboy…
Thumbnail image for 4_14_09 Reds vs Brewers 010.jpgI asked for pumpkin seeds.  Apparently, they didn’t have any, so, he tossed me the sunflower seeds instead.  Thanks dude.

Final haul for the day…
4_14_09 Reds vs Brewers 011.jpg6 Baseballs (4 are shown/2 were given away) and 1 bag of sunflower seeds.  Do the seeds count for anything…?? 

I didn’t think so.

2009 BALLHAWKING STATS

  • 6 total balls 4/14/09

2 caught on fly (hit)

1 toss-up

3 device

ATTENDANCE:  27,441

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
___________________

55 baseballs (8 games)
6.875 average per game

4/13/09 @ Miller Park

As my wife and I walked up to the stadium, I spotted this…
4_13_09 Reds vs Brewers 001.jpg                                                just lying on the ground. 

So, I bent down, picked it up and placed it into my left front pocket.

I’m a bit superstitious.

When we were allowed to enter Miller Park, I found the Brewers still on the field for BP.  I spotted Brewers relief pitcher JORGE JULIO shagging baseballs out near the left field warning track.  I asked him for a baseball and he tossed one up for a quick BASEBALL #1.

I ran over to take a peek into the Brewers bullpen for any glove trick opportunities.  When I arrived, I spotted one.  I pulled the necessary equipment out of my bag and pulled it up for BASEBALL #2

Now you see it…
4_13_09 Reds vs Brewers 002.jpgNow you don’t…
4_13_09 Reds vs Brewers 006.jpg4_13_09 Reds vs Brewers 003.jpg                            That’s me in action with my wife as the photographer. 

After using the glove trick, I ran up to the loge bleachers (200 level) to shag a few.  When I arrived, I started combing through the bleachers in hopes of finding an overlooked easter egg.  There were about 15 people in the bleachers at this point.  I knew the odds were slim but I had to give it a shot.  After looking for about a minute or so…I had spotted one!  It was on the very bottom row of loge bleachers and I did not see it until I had walked about 50 feet away from it.  The angle was just right that it had been overlooked.  I moved toward the unclaimed baseball with a brisk walk.  I didn’t want to give it away to anyone (a few guys were doing the same easter egg hunt as I was).  When I was about 10 feet from it, I sprinted over and claimed it for BASEBALL #3
I love finding easter eggs.

Brewers pitcher MITCH STETTER was shagging baseballs in left field.  I yelled down to him for a baseball and he lobbed one up to me for BASEBALL #4.

Four quick ones and the Reds hadn’t even taken the field, yet.

When the Redlegs did finally start to hit the field, I moved over to right because I knew the big lefty sluggers would be starting things off.

I must admit, Batting Practice is not as fun without Adam Dunn on the Reds, but young sluggers JOEY VOTTO and JAY BRUCE both did their part to make up for his absence.  It didn’t take Jay Bruce long to hit one out.  When he did, I ran over and caught it on the fly for BASEBALL #5.  Hitting in the same group was the aforementioned stud Joey Votto. Joey cranked one out in my direction, too.  In the same fashion, I gloved his BP homer on the fly, too!  That was BASEBALL #6.

I was cruising right along.

I looked down to the field and Reds pitcher AARON HARANG was shagging some BP right below my seats in right-center field.

You can’t really tell by the picture…
4_13_09 Reds vs Brewers 008.jpg                                but, take my word for it…that’s Aaron Harang.

So, I politely called down to him.  I asked him if he would be willing to sign a baseball for me.  He made a “toss-it-down” motion with his glove.  So, toss-it-down I did.

Here’s a picture of Aaron Harang signing one of my game balls…
4_13_09 Reds vs Brewers 007.jpg

                                        Cool dude-that Aaron Harang.

Here’s the finished product…
4_13_09 Reds vs Brewers 012.jpg                           He really took his time, which is rare nowadays.

Autograph obtained…resume ballhawking.

Reds pitcher JARED BURTON was standing out in right-center field shagging some BP.  When he fielded one close to the warning track, I told him that if he left it on the track that I could pick it up.  He asked me if I had go-go gadget arms.  I said, “not exactly, but close to it!”  He took the baseball he had in his hand and tossed it up to me for BASEBALL # 7.  I was a little surprised that he even tossed it, but what the heck…I’ll take it.  I thanked him for the toss-up and then I told him I wasn’t kidding about picking i
t off the warning track.  He said, “next one.”

A minute later, another ball was hit out toward him.  He fielded it and lobbed it back toward the wall where I was standing above.  I had the glove trick ready to go.  He walked back toward it and kicked it closer to the wall below.  I lowered my glove down and picked it off the track for BASEBALL #8.  I thanked him for the opportunity and for being cool.  Cool dude. 

That concluded the BP portion of my day.

Before the start of the 5th inning, Brewers CF MIKE CAMERON was warming up with Brewers LF RYAN BRAUN.  When Cameron was finished warming up, I let go one of my famous whistles.  He turned, took two steps toward me and let it fly from shallow centerfield.  The throw was going to be low so I had to lean way out over the small railing and make the catch.  Of course, I made the catch…for BASEBALL #9 on the day.

When the 9th inning began, I scampered down to the box seats near the Reds dugout.  I wanted to get my 1st ump game ball of the regular season.  It worked in Spring Training for me a bunch of times, but that was exhibition.  I wanted to do it when things counted.  So, after the last out was recorded, I was in place.  I ran down to the front row and called out to home plate umpire MIKE REILLY.  He turned in my direction and reached into his ball pouch.  He grabbed one and fired a strike to my waiting glove for BASEBALL #10

I was glad to get that 1st ump game ball out of the way on this young season.

About 20 seconds later, the players and coaches were exiting the field.  I scanned everyone’s mitts and hands.  I spotted Reds 1B Coach BILLY HATCHER walking off the field.  Billy had a ball in his hands and you could see he was scanning the crowd for a fan in Reds gear.  I was decked out in my Griffey, Jr. #3 Reds jersey and cap.  I yelled out “Billy, Billy Hatcher” and held up my glove.  It was too easy…we made eye contact and he tossed me BASEBALL #11 on the day.

That concluded a pretty good day of hawking at the yard…
4_13_09 Reds vs Brewers.jpg11 baseballs (10 are shown-1 was given away)  Ump ball bottom middle/Coach Hatcher toss-up bottom right.  I do not # mark game balls.

2009 BALLHAWKING STATS

  • 11 total balls 4/13/09

2 caught on fly (hit)

1 easter egg (hit)

6 toss-ups

2 device

ATTENDANCE:  25,016

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
___________________

49 baseballs (7 games)
7.0 average per game

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