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Thursday, December 29, 2011

Vacation Defined

According to Webster's Encyclopedic Unabridged Dictionary of the English Language: vacation 1. a period of suspension of work, study, or other activity, usually used for rest, recreation, or travel; recess or holiday; 3. freedom or release from duty, business, or activity; 5. to take or have a vacation.

Travel isn't something TV Stevie and I do. Oh, we took the Chromos to Niagara Falls overnight a couple of times when they were young. In 2006, we drove to Columbus, Ohio for a film festival and took the Chromos with us. We ended up going to a couple of Clippers games -- they were still the NY Yankees' Triple A team, and it was the final year in that stadium, so our timing was good. And the year Y-Chromo had his college freshman orientation, TV Stevie and I stayed on Long Island and visited friends in Manhattan while Y oriented.

We are not vacationers in the common sense of the word.

Our Syracuse Chiefs season tickets are our vacation. Every night when a home game is scheduled, we leave behind our regular world and escape to Section 207. We eat out -- usually a hot dog and lemonade, but sometimes chicken tenders and fries (we split the platter), or even a bowl of chili on really cold nights. And if my day has been particularly challenging, there's Dinosaur and a beer. I'm not cooking, I'm not washing dishes: I'm on vacation.

Reality slips away as I watch the game. In her book, SAFE AT HOME, Alyssa Milano says, "...unlike hockey or basketball, where you have to focus every second in case you miss something, watching a baseball game is a leisurely, slow-paced affair . . . " She goes on to say, "The place that restores me is the ballpark."

Isn't the point of a vacation to escape life for a while and simply relax? Isn't a vacation supposed to be restorative? By definition, baseball is vacation for this fan. My vacation season lasts from early April to around Labor Day. I am blessed.

Thursday, December 22, 2011


The Nats traded Tommy Milone and Brad Peacock to Oakland.


Sunday, December 18, 2011


Chris Marrero is out until at least the All-Star Break. Guess we'll have to get used to a new 1st baseman.

And there's a lot of talk about Brad Peacock and Tommy Milone joining Strasburg in the Nats' pitching rotation. How cool is that?

Colin Ballester is gone -- a gift for The Maven.

Jesus Flores was tendered a contract with the Nats.

Seth Bynum has signed for another season with Syracuse.

In fact, Seth and Brad Peacock will be in Syracuse for the Hot Stove event in February. There's a gift idea: tickets to the Hot Stove.  Former Chief Carlos Delgado and new manager Tony Beasley will be there, too.

The Chiefs are promoting the Ladies of Summer ticket package as a holiday gift idea. And it's a good one, if you don't go to a lot of games. Personally, I think season ticket holders who happen to be female should also get one of the Ladies of Summer coffee mugs.

Hope everyone is having a wonderful holiday season.

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Matt Antonelli

Brief update:

The MLB Winter Meetings are over. The Nats lost Brad Meyer in the Rule 5 Draft. They also didn't sign the starter or center fielder for whom they were looking. Rumor has it Bryce Harper will start the season with the Nats, bypassing Triple A altogether.

Dang. I'd like to see him at least once.

In other "news", several weeks ago, I contacted Matt Antonelli, who has an interesting blog, and asked him if he'd answer some questions for me. I'm writing baseball fiction now, and need to know day-in-the-life kind of stuff. Matt graciously agreed to my request. Then life happened to him: he got engaged; he signed with Baltimore; needed his team physical, and so on. He finally answered my list of questions this week. I wasn't worried. He's had a lot on his plate, and he was doing me a huge favor. Great answers. His sense of humor came through very clearly. He's a great guy and he'll be missed in Syracuse for sure.

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Food, Glorious Food and Other Tid Bits

First item: Chris Marrero has torn his hamstring and is expected to miss the first part of spring training.

Second item: A couple of weeks ago, there was an article in the local paper recapping the Chiefs annual shareholder's meeting. Lots of good things ahead.

Chiefs paid off a loan they've been paying on since 1996.

The 10 games that Scranton Wilkes-Barre will be playing "at home" at Alliance Bank Stadium (while PNC Filed is being refurbished) will be included as bonus games at no extra cost for season ticket holders. YAY!

How about a new, state-of-the-art scoreboard?  If you don't think this is needed, please revisit the October 30th installment of this blog. Looks like it's going to happen.

The Chiefs have also entered into a partnership with Syracuse University's College of Sport and Human Dynamics. The purpose? Researching how to "increase attendance and improve overall fan experience". They could have just asked us. We have lots of ideas (none of which include tossing ice cream sandwiches into the stands).

Finally, Center Plate is out as the concessionaires, and Ovation Food Services is in. This is the same company that handles concessions at Rochester's Frontier Field. TV Stevie spoke to Jim from Center Plate at tonight's Syracuse University Basketball game. Jim seems to be OK with losing the Chief's account.

 This could be good, although I wouldn't want to lose Dinosaur BBQ pulled pork sandwiches. There are just some nights when a gal needs Dinosaur and a beer.

But my biggest concern is the hot dogs. Have you ever had a hot dog at Frontier Field? They are bar-none the worst hot dogs I have ever eaten. Ever. And they're small. Tiny. Which is good, because they're so awful, so there is less of them to choke down. I sure hope Alliance Bank Stadium sticks with Hoffmann's.

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Where Have All The Players Gone?

The Syracuse Chiefs are going to look a whole lot different in the 2012 season. Inevitable at this level of play, I suppose. After all, the 2011 team was vastly different from the 2010 team.

Here's what's going on:

Manager Randy Knorr has been called up to the Nats as a bench coach.

Jhonatan Solano has been called up to the Nats.

Corey Brown has been outrighted to the Chiefs. I guess we have another season of being snubbed by him. Oh joy.

The Chiefs have signed a new 3B -- Josh Johnson.

And the following have opted for free agency:

  • Jesus Valdez
  • Tug Hulett
  • Jeff Frazier
  • JD Martin
  • Gregor Blanco
  • Garret Mock
  • Seth Bynum
  • Michael Aubrey
  • Matt Antonelli
  • Carlos Maldonado. (My heart is breaking!)
I know that Matt Antonelli has signed with the Baltimore Orioles.Yeah Matt! He also got engaged to his girlfriend Laura over last weekend. Only the best, Matt.

Other favorites from other teams who've also gone the free-agent route: Chase "Mr. Error" Lambin, Jason "J-Botts" Botts, and Valentino "Pistachio" Pascucci. (Admit it, Sandee, Pistachio is one of your favorites).

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Generic Update

Wilson Ramos has been rescued and is getting ready to rejoin his Winter League team to play ball. So glad he's safe!

Ryan Tatusko decided to remain in Venezuela and play for his team there, saying he felt perfectly safe.

And Carlos Maldonado is from Venezuela, as well as playing in the Winter Leagues there right now.

A lot of people seem to think the Washington Nationals are poised to do great things in the next couple of years. And a lot of Syracuse Chiefs are being mentioned as being part of the process.

Molly, Brad Peacock, Sandee
Brad Peacock (RHP) is a name that's popping up with frequency. As is Steve Lombardozzi. Both Chiefs were called up to Washington near the end of the season. Tommy Milone is also on some lists.

Brian Bixler is going to the Astros.

 Matt Antonelli mentioned he's been talking to a lot of different teams.

There are going to be lots of changes in the next couple of months now that baseball season is over.

The continuing problem of minor league baseball: it's tough to get invested when the players might not be here tomorrow.

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Former Chief Allegedly Kidnapped

Catcher Wilson Ramos played in Syracuse for a while in 2010.

Now he's allegedly been kidnapped.

Holy cow.

Let's hope he comes out of this okay.

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Doctor Ice Cream

Remember back on August 8, Happiness Happens Day, when an dentist and a doctor from Canada were in Syracuse and came to the Chiefs Game?

Well, I'd swapped e-mail addresses with one of them, so he could check out the blog. A few days later, I received a very nice response:

It was very nice meeting you as well. We had a blast at the game . . . as you could see! We checked out the blog and had some great laughs seeing the photos and reading your comments. You do a great job. We're hoping to get down again next season for a game. Thanks again and best wishes.
DDS & MD: If you do come down for another game, be sure to stop by Section 207 to say hi. We'll be looking for you. 

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Hockey vs. Baseball and Other Rants

A few weeks ago, TV Stevie and I attended the home opener for the local "minor league" hockey franchise. Like the Syracuse Chiefs, the Syracuse Crunch play in a county-owned facility. There was a sell-out crowd, capacity a bit over 6,000 fans. And it was loud. They had "cheerleaders" (Ice Girls), none of whom looked a day over 16.

But what struck me was the scoreboard and other lighting effects around the rink.

There are around 38 home games in the team's season. That's about half as many home games as the Chiefs play. Sellout capacity, too, is roughly half of what Alliance Bank Stadium holds. Have I mentioned that the War Memorial and Alliance Bank Stadium are both county-owned facilities?

Then what's wrong with this picture?

Let's take another, closer look at the Crunch's scoreboard:

Figured it out yet?

Okay, here are two more hints.
Frontier Field, Rochester

PNC Field, Scranton (which is being rehabbed this coming season)
I'm sure you see my point by now.

Speaking of Rochester's Frontier Field:

To all the people out there who thought the stadium should have been built in downtown Syracuse, come to a game sometime, then go to an event in downtown.Which location is easier to get to? Easier to locate parking? Easier to leave?

Syracuse isn't like Rochester, with all those huge, open Kodak parking lots near the stadium. I mean, think about parking at the Carrier Dome. Think about all the money the city of Syracuse has to spend on street closures, traffic cops, etc. because of the dearth of parking (altho' I understand that the University is now contributing payment to those costs). Granted, a stadium that holds around 12,000 people isn't going to generate the traffic a facility holding 60,000 will generate, but stuck in traffic is still stuck in traffic. Downtown Syracuse isn't built to handle massive influxes of traffic.

TV Stevie and I went to the Lion King last month. Finding parking was a nightmare. We ended up on the top level of the ONCenter garage. After the show, we sat for half an hour before TV even started the car. (It wasn't wasted time. We listened to a Washington Nationals game on TV's iPhone.)

I like Alliance Bank Stadium right where they built it. Now if only the county would do something about the scoreboard.

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Fall Classic Sale, or How My Living Room Ended Up Looking Like Superman's Closet

I got to spend some time at the stadium yesterday.

Like last year, the Fall Classic Sale was held on a cold, overcast day. 
At least it wasn't blustery and rainy.
The field and stands looked a little sad. Lonely.

It didn't seem like there was as much "game worn" merchandise as there was last year. 

 Somebody bought the pink breast cancer awareness cleats
 before I had a chance to try them on. . . . 
or even get a picture.

Lot's of Michael Aubrey hats, 
but only numbers in the rest, 
and no one whose number 
I either remembered or wanted.

 Distance markers? Scoreboard numbers? Not sure.

TV Stevie and I arrived at 9:15AM for the 9AM start, 
and I learned that someone had already purchased Jason Botts' locker name plate. 
I was devastated when Josh told me that.
Lots of names I recognized, 
but only Gregor Blanco from this year's team. 
If they're selling his locker name plate, 
does that mean he won't be back in 2012?
I should have bought Joel Peralta's for Sandee.

But it wasn't a complete bust for me this year. Not at all.

You see, there was a rack of red and blue Starter jackets -- with the old Skychiefs logo on them. They still had their tags. They still had tissue stuffed inside them. Rumor had it that they were only $15. Turned out to be true. They were all size LARGE. I tried one on. It was big. I decided to buy it. TV Stevie saw how large it was on me, so tried one on. It fit him. He bought it. Another man heard they were only $15 each, so he grabbed one, not caring if it fit or not.

As we were heading back to our car, TV said, "You know, Anthony would love one of these." So I snapped a photo with my phone, texted it to Sandee with a message, then called her (she was teaching a class and couldn't make the sale). "Yes!" she said. "One for each of us!" 

In the meantime, TV tried calling XG-Man and got voice mail. He left a message. I went back up to the sale. There were five jackets left. I grabbed three. Another shopper asked me how much they were, and I (foolishly, according to TV) told him. He grabbed the last two. We debated whether or not to buy one for XG-Man (that's why I had three), and I said, let's just do it. So I did. While I was inside paying for them, XG called TV and said, "Yes!" I probably should have grabbed one for his wife, but wasn't quick enough.

General Manager John Simone walked by and saw me with an armful of jackets and asked, "Do you have a team?" I said, "No, this is for Row One of Section 207." He laughed and said, "The whole section."

We are going to look so sharp on opening day. Sandee e-mailed later last night, "Who would have thought we could get even more cool than we already are??" 

As we were driving home, TV commented that with five of these jackets, our house was going to look like Superman's Closet. I had no idea what he was talking about, so he explained. It was an episode of THE ADVENTURES OF SUPERMAN (the B&W version starring George Reeves upon which TV & I grew up) where a mobster broke into Clark Kent's apartment and found a secret closet, filled with Superman's uniforms. The episode is actually called The Stolen Costume and is considered by some to be the best episode in the series. I don't remember it at all.

Then TV observed that only Maven didn't have a new jacket, but that he wouldn't want one anyway, because he refuses to wear anything with SKYCHIEFS on it. His loss.

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Where Are They Now?

What are our favorite players doing in the off-season?

Here's what I know:
Jhonatan Solano and Chris Marrero are playing on the same team in the Dominican Winter League.

The Venezuelian Winter League is rife with Syracuse Chiefs (although not all on the same teams). The list includes:

  • Ryan Tatusko
  • Jesus Flores
  • Seth Bynum
  • Gregor Blanco
  • Josh "You Rock" Wilkie
  • Carlos Maldonado

Makes me wish I had the time and dime to head south for a few months.

Don't forget the Fall Classic Sale on Saturday, 10/22 9AM-12NN. Hope to see you there!

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Jealousy, Memorabilia, & Scathingly Brilliant Bloggers

The Chiefs will be holding their annual Fall Classic Merchandise and Memorabilia Sale on October 22.

I'm looking forward to it if for no other reason than I get to go back to the stadium for a little while.

Last year's sale was held on a cold, blustery, rainy October day (not unlike opening day 6 months later). I bought a batting practice t-shirt, which is my favorite shirt to wear to games. It had been J-Botts number in 2010. Imagine my delight when it was Carlos Maldonado's number in 2011. A two-fer.

Love looking through all the stuff, finding my favorite players' game-worn items.

Also got to see Sandee & Anthony there, which I hope will happen again this year.

In other news, the First Ladies of Baseball are blogging about a lot of post-season happenings in DC, the most recent of which is that because they are considered an "online media outlet" they get to participate in all sorts of surveys through the DC chapter of the Internet Baseball Writers Association.


But then I read the criteria for membership, which includes: "Content should steer away from personal attack, publication of potentially damaging unfounded or unsubstantiated rumor or innuendo, and gratuitous vulgarity," and I wonder if that means I can't post any more limericks. Okay, I posted only one, and players aren't required to acknowledge fans, but still . . .

Anyway, in the most recent survey, the First Ladies listed Marrero, Bixler, and Brown among players who won't be on the Nats' roster in 2012. In response to my comment in defense of  Marrero, Maggie said she could see him in Syracuse, it's just that the Nats have a logjam at 1st. Okay, I'll buy that.

Other items of note from the Ladies:

  • They voted for Stephen Strasburg as Come Back Player of the Year (Jordan Zimmermann got the nod). They are right. Strasburg's comeback from Tommy John surgery was astounding.
  • They thought Steve Lombardozzi should have gotten Minor League Player of the Year instead of Bryce Harper. I agree. Lom-bo! Lom-bo!
  • Their 2nd choice for Minor League Player of the Year was Brad Peacock. These women are brilliant. Scathingly brilliant.

Sunday, October 2, 2011

Let the Post Season Begin!

Ten or eleven former Chiefs will be playing in MLB's post-season this week: Michael Martinez , Roy Halladay, Pete Orr (is he up with Philly now?), Chris Carpenter, Corey Patterson, Shaun Marcum, Marco Estrada, Aaron Hill, Ryan Roberts, AJ Burnett, Joel Peralta.

Not a bad showing

And the Nats finished 50-51, thanks to their late-season infusion of Chiefs. Or so I'd like to think. 

In other news, as previously mentioned here, the Scranton Wilkes-Barre Yankees will be playing several "home" games at Alliance Bank Stadium next season. One source says 10 games, TV Stevie tells me one print repors claim 8 games. 

Only 186 days until opening day!

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Autumn & Winter

As I've written here before, Sandee and I are going to try to keep the blog going in the off-season. I'm shooting for one post per week, probably on Sunday.

I'm still immersed in baseball, but at a higher level. I'm a NY Yankee fan, and my Bombers are doing very well. But so are the Nats, and it makes me wonder if it's just all the Chiefs that were called up in September or if the teams they're playing, like Philly, know they've clinched so aren't playing at 100%, saving themselves for the post-season.

I've also been reading baseball-related books (some of which I'll review during the off-season), and started watching Ken Burns' BASEBALL. I sure hope the library lets me renew the DVD set until I see the entire series.

The First Ladies of Summer wrote in their blog:
Fact: Ashley and I are terrible bloggers.  I've been to three games recently, and blogged about none of them.  There have been a few other events and posts that we never got around to sharing with everyone.  Part of this can be attributed to a condition that Ashley and I have dubbed being "baseball'd out".  Being baseball'd out happens when you've gone to a lot of baseball games during the summer.

Maggie and Ashley? Sandee and I can relate.

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Brad Peacock!

Congrats to Brad Peacock on his first MLB start last night against the New York Mets. Brad pitched 5 innings and got the win.

Tommy Milone is pitching against the Mets this afternoon. Good luck, Tommy!

Monday, September 12, 2011

Buffalo Vs. Syracuse?

There's a NY Mets vs. Washington Nats game on tonight at a reasonable (i.e. East Coast) hour, so I guess I'll tune in. According to a Mets-fan co-worker, it will be just like watching a Buffalo vs. Syracuse game, since the 40-man roster season has brought up so many players from both teams.

Works for me! Maybe I'll get to see Marrero on 1st for the Nats and Pistachio on 1st for the Mets.

Gotta have a Chiefs baseball fix, that's for sure.

Saturday, September 10, 2011

From Syracuse to Washington: With Love

I've been in touch with The First Ladies of Baseball, who seem to be the Sandee & Molly of the Washington Nationals.

Part of what I wrote (the night Strasburg debuted in DC):

Take care of your newbies Brad Peacock, Tommy Milone, and Atahualpa Severino. Syracuse's season is over, but the Nats have our best!
Maggie responded:

We’ll take good care of them. And we don’t blame Peacock for his bad outing last night – that was totally not his fault. I, personally, blame Doug Slaten. PS – Very jealous of you guys getting waves from players on a regular basis!
Good to know you'll take care of our guys, Maggie. And as for us getting waves from the players on a regular basis? Well that's easy. We're the coolest people at the stadium!

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

MLB Debuts

Congrats to Brad Peacock, Atahualpa Severino, and Steve Lombardozzi on their MLB debuts last night.

Also called up: Yuneski Maya, and Craig Stammen.

Oh. And that outfielder. The fan dissing one.

TV Stevie & I listened to a late inning or two on the radio last night.

Sorry the Nats lost the game.

212 days, but who's counting?

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Final Game of the Season

September 5, 2011
The Syracuse Chiefs ended the season the same way they began it: in the rain. But because Lehigh Valley needed to play this game in their run for the Wildcard spot, the game went on in spite of the weather. According to radio reports, this game was pretty much mandated.

And I suppose the weather reflected my mood: dismal. The end of the season is always sad for this fan.

The weather also made play dangerous. And the pitchers had a difficult time controlling a wet ball.

The scoreboard when I arrived
When TV Stevie and I first arrived we sat with friends in the back of Section 207, but by the start of the 2nd inning, I needed to be in my front row seat. It was just rain. I'm not made out of sugar, I won't melt. And it wouldn't be the first time I sat watching a Chiefs game in the rain. Especially this season.

Steve Lombardozzi was the first base coach for the 1st, 2nd, 3rd and 5th innings. We know he heard us. The stadium was nearly empty. Sandee said his grandmother (with whom he lives, in Auburn) would be ashamed of the way he dissed a couple of old ladies like us. It's not cool.

Matt Antonelli was the first base coach in the 4th inning, and he acknowledged us. YAY Matt!

It was very difficult to take notes in the rain while holding an umbrella, but I have a few:

  • In the middle of the3rd inning, Carlos Maldonado came out of the dugout with a pink bat and gave it to a kid sitting near the dugout. Carlos is just a great guy when it comes to his fans. That is why Sandee and I are the co-presidents of the Carolos Maldonado Fan Club.
  • We saw Carlos come out a couple of times to warm up the pitcher, but he never responded to us. He was focused on the kid behind the net near the dugout.
  • Talked to Tall Mike, the assistant GM: 214 days until opening days. That's 30 weeks. In our opinion, that's too long! But we got the schedules last night (with an unknown Nationals player on them) and saw how "heavy" the schedule was in April and wondered who did that? Hello?? This is Syracuse, New York, the snowiest major metropolitan area in the continental United States. Why are there so many April games in Syracuse? We should be in Charlotte, Gwinett, Louisville.
  • We noticed the team wore their weekend red jerseys today. Maybe the others were already packed away. 
  • The Famous Eric Cohen stopped by to say hi.
  • Sandee and I each got t-shirts in the t-shirt toss. So did TV Stevie.
  • So many controversial calls by the umps starting in the 5th inning. It was very clear that the league had said this game had to be played, regardless of weather, and that the umps were favoring the (iron)Pigs. Tug was "accused" (interference error) of tripping a player running home (the grass was wet!) The catcalls from the stands were quite creative. "Tell him to tie his shoes next time!" and "You try to run on wet grass, Ump!" Sandee, Anthony, & I joined in. So even though Jhonatan Solana made the out at home, the runner was called safe. 
  • Bottom of 5th: it sure as sugar looked like an in-park home run to us, but Garret Mock's hit was ruled a ground rule double. 
  • Garret Mock had to ask for towels several times to wipe down the ball and his glove. 
  • Top of 6th: the Lehigh Valley runner slid at first base and was clearly out, but was called safe because he slipped. As someone behind me said, "Can't call it, 'cause they gotta win it."
  • During the top of the sixth inning, Randy Knorr and Ryne Sandberg came out and conferred with umps. The rain was steady. Five innings (the minimum required to be an 'official' game) had been played. The players were called in. The announcer made it sound as if the game had been called. Thanked us for our attendance.
  • Sandee and I shrieked Carlos's name. He raised his helmet in acknowledgement. 
  • XG-man came down to say good-bye. He'd been sitting out of the rain. He said, "I wondered who was crazy enough to be sitting down here. It figures." He wished us a Merry Christmas, and said he'd see us next season. 
  • Maven came down to say good-bye. He'd been sitting out of the rain. He hugged us all. 
  • Sandee thinks we should have a Section 207 reunion mid off-season.
  • Jim Durkin has been having back problems. Hope you're feeling better soon, Jim!
  • I found TV Stevie, who was sitting with friends, Kevin & Debby. Kevin asked: "Did they call the game?" The announcer never said. But Kevin pointed out to me that they'd picked up the bases and gone home. The scoreboard read: RAIN DELAY.
The base path is a river. No tarp.
Kevin also told me he'd miss the blog. (Thanks, Kevin!) I explained that Sandee and I have plans to keep the blog going in the off-season. Maybe we won't blog as often, but we have material we've been saving, and plenty of ideas. 

Two hundred and thirteen days, but who's counting?

Monday, September 5, 2011

The Final Home Stand: Game 1

Lehigh Valley came to town, needing two wins. And they got 'em.

Sunday was hot and humid, weatherwise. People kept telling me the game would be rained out. Instead, we had a beautiful night for a ballgame and fireworks.

One of the first things we heard: "Is Lurch calling the game?" Whoever was announcing in the stadium spoke very slowing and had a very deep voice.

Matt Antonelli coached first throughout the game. He didn't acknowledge us until the 4th inning, but a couple of times he did hear us and look around to see who was calling his name.

Antonelli coaching 1st
We also got to see former Chief Pete Orr play.
Pete Orr at the plate
All of the Section 207 gang was there. Sandee & I discussed trying to get a group photo, but Maven is camera shy, and we didn't think he'd go for it.

  • In the third inning, Lombo (2nd) hot-dogged a throw to Fraze (1st), but it wasn't in time. TV Stevie said it looked like Lombo's been watching too much Jeter and Cano.
  • Bottom of the third. Lombo, Hulett, Valdez on base. Fraze fouls out. That other outfielder called out on strikes. Someone behind us kept shouting, "You're kidding! You gotta be kidding!" After about the third refrain of this, TV Stevie responded: "Yeah, he's kidding. He's the Comedian Umpire."
  • Fifth inning: Tug Hulett made a spectacular catch at third base. 
  • Bottom of the fifth: Lombo & Bynum hit line drives. Hulett's line drive sends Lombo home. Then Jesus Valdez, our favorite outfielder, hits a home run! Score: 4-1 Chiefs. A few batters later, Iron Pig manager and Hall of Famer Ryne Sandberg came out to change pitchers.
Hall of Famer Ryne Sandberg
At some point, Josh Barfield, son of former Toronto Blue Jay and New York Yankee Jesse Barfield, 
came into the game.
Josh Barfield
In the seventh inning, there was a pitching change.
Ryan Tatusko had started the game.
Tatusko on the mound
Unfortunately, the next two pitchers blew the lead for us. Then Sandee's favorite pitcher, Josh Wilkie (as in "Josh Wilkie, you ROCK!") came into the game.

New Pitcher
While this was happening, some kid was trying to tell Scooch a knock-knock joke, and the Iron Pigs' third base coach was writing something, using his thigh as a desk. Anthony thought he might be making notes for his  blog.

The Chiefs managed to tie the game, and Zech Zinicola did his best in the 9th, but in the end, the Pigs ruled, 7-4.

  • The Scranton-Wilkes Barre Yankees may play several home games at Alliance Bank Stadium next season, while PNC Field undergoes renovation.
  • We haven't seen Jim Durkin at a game since he took the fans on a road trip to Boston on August 20.
  • Carlos Maldonado in the dugout. 'Nuff said.
Carlos in the dugout