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Monday, April 9, 2012

Oh What a Night!

Cold cold cold.

But worth it. Definitely worth it.

TV Stevie and I arrived in the bottom of the first. I was scoring the game in the car from the radio. Quite a challenge, let me tell you.

The jersey was #41, Matt Chico's Throwback Thursday from last year.
Eric Arneson was yesterday's player of the game.

The Bryce Harper Report:
1st - singled
2nd - out at first
4th - walked
7th - grounded to SS to 1st

The Corey Brown Report:
1st - walked
2nd - triple (and scored on a passed ball)
3rd - walked
5th - struck out
8th - grounded to first

It was a heck of a night.

Carlos Rivero suffers mightily from Lambinitis.
Carlos Rivero at the plate

Tyler Moore hit his first home run ever  in the second inning. I'd just finished telling someone to keep an eye on him because he's supposed to be an up-and-comer, and bam, right over the left field fence. Sandee was en route when it happened and texted me that the radio announcers said it was one of the deepest home runs to left field the announcer has ever seen.

The scariest moment of the game came in the third inning when Dickerson broke his bat and it went flying into the stands and hit a little girl. Three or four years old. WHAT WAS HER FATHER THINKING SITTING ONLY A COUPLE OF ROWS BEHIND THE DUGOUT WITH CHILDREN THAT YOUNG? Of course, everyone converged to make sure she was all right. "Medical" didn't show up right away, and I heard someone ask, "Where's medical? Buffalo?"  The girl and her dad eventually left for a bit. She came back wearing a batting helmet. TV Stevie looks a me and says: "Oh my God! They've killed Kenny!"

I nearly lost it. I couldn't stop laughing.

During the T-Shirt Toss, the interns kept trying to get t-shirts up to our section, but fell just short. One guy made off with two of them, just swooping in. Anthony eventually ended up with one. This year's shirt is very different.

Sandee shows off Anthony's T-Shirt
Then, at the bottom of the fourth, something truly cool happened. The Yankees changed pitchers, bringing in a guy named Pat Venditte. What's so cool about that? Well Venditte happens to be an ambidextrous pitcher. It was the first time an ambidextrous pitcher pitched in Chiefs history. Venditte is the only active professional pitcher who can pitch proficiently with either arm. It was . . . amazing. He has a custom made glove with two thumbs that he flips when he changes side. 

Unfortunately, either my camera is going bad or I was shivering so hard the photos blurred, but here's what I have:
Venditte Right

Venditte Left
Apparently he must declare which way he is going to pitch to the first batter. After that, I guess he can pitch however, but he cannot change arms on a batter, just like a switch hitter not changing sides during an at-bat.

Carlos Maldonado waved to us between the 4th and 5th innings. He's such a great guy. 

TV Stevie and I went to find something to eat at the top of the fifth inning, but TV kept wandering off to watch Venditte pitch. We eventually found hotdogs that had allegedly been grilled, but just like the allegedly steamed hotdogs, they weren't cooked. The concessions people insist the dogs are cooked, but really? No. They are only warmed. 

Crazy Fan Man showed up around the sixth inning. He was on fire. He had all of our row laughing, including Maven and our friend Kevin who was sitting right behind me.
"Put your foot on the rubber, baby!"
"Why don't you call me Cecile?"
"Rice-A-Roni call 'em back."
Atahualpa Severino came in in the seventh. He did not have a good outing tonight. Maven came over to me and Sandee to confide: "I would rather be at the dentist without Novocaine than watch this guy pitch." Tell us how you really feel, Maven!

It was an ugly inning, including one play that Kevin told me would be scored 7-2-6-3-4-3-4. (LF to catcher to shortstop to first to second to first to second). Plus there were two fielding errors in the top of the seventh. Bryce Harper, who played CF tonight, drifted too far right to catch a fly ball, so he and Xavier Paul sort of ran into each other and neither one of them made the catch.

Maven explained Harper's actions like this: last year, in double A, Harper spent most of his time in RF. He was taught that CF is to catch anything he can and that as a RF he must yield to CF. I guess it was a tough lesson for him, based on the way Maven explained it to me. So now, Harper in CF goes for whatever he can, because LF and RF are to yield to him. He just didn't realize that the fly ball had drifted so far right that it was clearly the RFer's catch.

There's a new Pops this year, and can that person dance. It is a joy to watch. As Maven said, "Keep Michael Jackson's doctor away from the guy and we'll be all right."

The last two innings of the game were tense. Josh Wilkie loaded the bases with the score 6-4 Syracuse, but managed to get out of it. Ryan Perry came in to pitch the 9th. 

Someone down front wanted to know why Maldonado wasn't catching the game. Don't we all wonder that all the time? 

Scranton scored a fifth run.  Pearce fell running to first, yet made it to second safely anyway, because of a fielding error by Corey Brown.  I was ready to pull on my wind-pants and find my blanket, expecting extra innings, but Perry managed to pull it out.

My vote for player of the game: Zach Duke (starting pitcher)
Sandee's vote: Tyler Moore (of the 2-run homer)

Maven tells us there is snow in the forecast for tomorrow night's game.

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