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Sunday, February 26, 2012

The Coolest People In the Stadium

In 2010, Sandee & Anthony and TV Stevie & I obtained our season tickets in Row 1 of Section 207, joining long-time season ticket holders the Maven and XGMan & his wife. As far as we are concerned, these are the best seats in the house. Otherwise, I wouldn't have had to ask photogs to move when Strasburg first came to town to pitch. Or ask people to move out of my seats on a somewhat regular basis.

TV Stevie spent most of the 2009 season moving from here to there, behind the net, behind the dugouts, next to the dugouts (where we sat when the Chromos were younger) in search in the best seats. Section 207. Row 1. No question.

But there was one little, minor problem. Well, not a problem. More of an inconvenience.

If you sit in  Row 2 or higher in any section, you have a drink cup holder.

If you sit in the 1st row of any section, except behind the dugouts, you're on your own.

Row 1 behind dugout after a game.
We discussed going to an auto-supply store in the off-season and trying to find something to rig for ourselves.

But come Opening Day 2011, we hadn't done it.

Then one afternoon in late April, Sandee & Anthony arrived at the stadium all agog. "Look what Anthony found at BB&B!" Sandee brought the packaging so I would know exactly what to look for.

TV Stevie and I went to our BB&B after the game. I couldn't find Sandee's treasure anywhere. I finally asked the store manager, who told me yes, they had them out back. He offered to fetch one for me. "Two," I replied, as TV Stevie whipped out his iPhone to call XGMan.

The next night, more of the Coolest People in the Stadium had someplace to safely stow their beverages.

Maven frequently eyes them in envy. Stadium security suggested we purchase a bunch of them and rent them out to other first row attendees. People inquire if we took them off strollers. Others say, "I need one of those for my lawn mower!" Dave Anthony expects mine to be out and ready for his beverage when he finishes his first in-game spiel.

And this is just one of the many reasons Section 207 seats the Coolest People in the Stadium.

Sunday, February 19, 2012

The Art of Lingering

"You cannot hurry to Cooperstown."
Breaking Into Baseball: Women & the National Pastime  
by Jean Hastings Ardell 

It might have been the final fireworks night of the 2011 season. As usual, we were the last ones to leave the stadium . . . and the only reason we left is because security asked us to leave so the workers could lock up and go home.  We caught up with Maven in the parking lot. Like us, he sticks around after games, listening to the music, talking, relaxing. He was the one who brought up the topic of lingering.

"Whatever expectations I struggled with at home . . . fell away at the ballpark." ibid.

We all understand that the workers want to go home and that the county budget doesn't allow for overtime. It is, after all, our tax dollars, and we want to see those dollars used wisely. But Maven brought up a very good point. One goes to the ballpark and enjoys the game and an occasional fireworks night.

When the fireworks are over, there's good music playing, inviting one to linger. It's been a mellow evening. One is relaxed and happy.

The next day, one thinks, "I had a great time at the ballpark last night. I'm going to do that again."  And now there's another baseball fan buying tickets and coming to games. Because of the overall experience, which includes lingering after it's all over, extending the experience as long as possible.

"The place that restores me is the ballpark."  Safe at Home  by Alyssa Milano
Too bad there isn't a way to allow fans to linger until they are naturally inclined to leave.  Life's precious moments shouldn't boil down to money.

Monday, February 6, 2012

Guess Who Might Be Coming to Syracuse?

According to Federal Baseball, the Nats have signed veteran player Rick Ankiel to a minor league contract.

Ankiel played in Syracuse late June/early July last year.

Ankiel in on-deck circle, June 29, 2011

Ankiel's first at bat as a Chief, June 29, 2011

Heading back to dugout after scoring first run as a Chief, June 29, 2011

He looks good in the Chiefs uniform, don't you think?

Don't know who he is? Let me refresh you.

According to Wikipedia, Ankiel "is the first player since Babe Ruth to have won at least 10 games as a pitcher and also hit at least 50 home runs. Ankiel is also the only player other than Babe Ruth to both start a postseason game as a pitcher and hit a home run in the postseason as a position player."

How cool would that be? I say very cool.

Saturday, February 4, 2012

Sixty One Days (but who's counting?)

Sixty one days until Opening Day at Alliance Bank Stadium. I put in for the afternoon off from the DayJob. I am so there.

Major League Pitchers and Catchers report in two weeks. Look to the right of this post, and you'll see I've added a countdown ticker. Gotta love the 'net.

Ryan Tatusko has a blog (scroll down to see the link on the right side of the screen) and a FaceBook Fan Club Page. Wish more players would make themselves accessible to the fans.

Didn't get to the Hot Stove event at the stadium last night. Wonder how it went. I'm sure the Inside The Chiefs blog will have something. Seth Bynum was scheduled to speak. He'll be back in April.