Monthly Archives: June 2012

In Which I Hit Fenway Park

Boston is a really amazing city and everything but when I first started planning this trip? The first (and pretty much only) thing I thought was: Fenway. So yesterday I braved the blistering heat in the city and took a stadium tour in the afternoon. I could feel the ghost of Theo Epstein everywhere, but other than that, it was loads of fun. Our tour guide was named Owen and he was very funny and eerily Red Sox knowledgeable. Other than all the Yankee hating and pesky sunshine, says the San Francisco girl, I had a blast.

I was so excited to be at Fenway that I blinked. Ah, well. Also, yes, you are seeing that right. I wore borderline pinstripes. Sometimes my brain ceases to work, I admit it.

It really surpassed my expectations, actually. What people always say about the old stadiums is that while they are interesting, they’re a bit dinky. Fenway was not at all dinky, from what I saw. It feels very small and intimate and I love the way it’s nestled right in the center of the city. From the higher parts (read: Green Monster. Oh yes. I sat on the Green Monster. More on that later.) you can see the whole city skyline in a way that you can’t at stadiums that are more on the outskirts, like AT&T. I adore AT&T, but this had a whole different energy.

We also sat in seats from the 30s – yes, the very seats that had been there since the 30s – and while they were beastly uncomfortable, the history was pretty much worth it. I love getting a peak into what baseball stadiums might have been like a good long while ago and here, it’s incorporated into the actual experience, rather than just being museum-like.

They said they haven’t replaced partially because they, well, don’t want to and partially because now seats have gotten bigger and they’d lose about 3000 seats if they put in modern ones. Since the stadium already seats only 38,00o or so, that’d be a big loss. Of revenue. But they didn’t say that. They put it more sweetly.

Our guide showed us the Mickey Mouse Red Sox statue, too, and how it’s all bandaged up. I didn’t remember this, but apparently it was vandalized/accidentially banged up on a trip of Anaheim for the All Star Game and since the Red Sox were also pretty banged up that year – I do remember that - they decided to leave a cast on the statue. Which made me smile, although it’s a little bit terrible. Also, the whole hallway full of every issue of Sports Illustrated that’s ever featured a Red Sox player on the cover? Lots of fun.

I can’t say I side with Boston in the whole Boston-New York thing, but they’re definitely growing on me. The view from the Green Monster is also pretty much the greatest thing ev-ah.

Also so excited to be on the Green Monster that I began to blink. AKA, this was a bad day in photos of me.

Afterwards, we went a sports bar which was nice aside from the fact that they were playing some sports network that had a running banner on the bottom that showed, oh, one stat over and over and over. Which stat, you ask? Tim Lincecum’s road ERA, I hiss. I burrowed into my food and tried to watch soccer on the other TV. Didn’t work all that well. I do not get soccer. And on the other other TV they kept replaying LeBron with confetti and things which was also, of course, off limits. (Go Nets and mostly Mikhail Prokhorov, I say.) This, my friends, is why I avoid sports bars.

That evening, then, Lincecum did something pretty interesting. After a horrible first inning, he cleaned up his act and tossed his third quality start of the season. I slept through it, ’cause that’s what I do over here, but I have a cautiously good feeling about him. Did something click? Maybe. Maybe not. The best we can do is cross our fingers and beat them A’s again tonight. Okay? Okay.

Diamond Girl

p.s. Two more things! I’m heading off to another New England City That Shall Remain Nameless tomorrow and again, computer access will be spotty. So I may be in and out tomorrow and for the coming week. Back in full force next weekend. And yes, I saw the One Red Seat. Which, as a newly licensed Red Sox Trivia Lady, I can tell you signifies the longest home run ever hit at Fenway. In case there was any doubt, I can confirm that that homer was indeed… long. Very. Very.

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Hello from Red Sox Nation!

Seriously, guys.  Everyone here is a Red Sox fan.  Everyone.  And if they’re not a Red Sox fan, they still hate the Yankees.  It’s a little bit eerie, actually.  As I landed in Boston yesterday, a woman behind me was filling in her kids on the Sox game and said something about Cody Ross.  I was this close to turning around and being all, “2010 World Series, baby!” when I realized that I was in Boston now and they were not the least bit interested in the 2010 World Series.  I picked up my black-and-white checkered tote and zipped my lips.

I missed last night’s game because being a West Coast fan on the East Coast is horrible and I couldn’t stay awake, but I hear it was quite depressing anyway.  I would be lying if I said I was all sad about missing it.  Interleague Play has not treated us terribly well so far this year and I’m more nervous than I should be, heading into the Bay Bridge Matchup.  Series loss to the Rangers, series loss to the Mariners and now a series loss to the Angels.  When this Giants team is good, it’s really, really good.  But when it’s bad?  It’s really, really bad.  Not that there were’t good things about last night’s game and the past few series’ in general – Vogelsong did pretty much the best he could have, three runs over seven innings – but otherwise, they just seem off, for lack of a better word.  Everyone’s healthy, but not everyone’s good.

Also, the Angels of Anaheim are doing better than they should be.  It helps that the Rangers are 9-1 in their last 10, but the Angels are also 7-3 and exactly five games back.  Too close for comfort?  Yes.

The Giants meanwhile, are 4-6 in their last 10, but that’s exactly the same as the Dodgers, so nothing is too disastrous after all.  San Francisco is four games back from first place and heading into a series against the A’s who, while they might be hot right now, are sure to cool off sometime.  And starting tomorrow is sure to be “sometime”.

Am I not the best inspirational speaker in the history of the Giants blogosphere?  (Admittedly short history, but still.)

Go Red So– aah.  No.  This city is not getting to me.

Diamond Girl

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Why I’m Going to Be Getting a Bad Case of the East Coast Bias

First, a public service announcement. I am heading off to the East Coast tomorrow for ten days and may or may not be blogging. As previously discussed, WiFi seems to be a commodity on the other side of the nation so we shall see. In any case, you can bet on your life that I will spend an WiFi time huddled around my iPod, checking the Giants score and any San Fran gossip I can get my hands on, on Twitter. I shall not disappear entirely, although if I catch a case of the famed East Coast Bias (high likelihood, guys) you may wish I had disappeared entirely.

Either way, I am going to Fenway – by all means, die of jealousy – and will share all my pictures when I get home. Assuming I get home. And am not eaten by cannibals. (Distinct possibility.) ‘K? ‘K. Now that that’s out of the way…

The Giants kicked off the World Series rematch and, um, has anyone else noticed that we play the AL West a lot a lot in the World Series? Or maybe my East Coast Bias hasn’t kicked in yet and I’m deluding myself. But seriously, every Interleague series this year is a World Series rematch aside from the Mariners who, no offense to them ‘cause I’m sure they’re fantastic guys, don’t count. Anyway, Cain was far from perfect last night but the team came together to squeeze out a win by a final of 5-3. The bullpen was absolutely stellar and even the Orwellian attendants at Angels Stadium could not bring them down. There was some nice circumstantial hitting – yes, I just said circumstantial hitting, shoot me now – from a variety of fabulous Giants.

I have to get going for the dreaded packing before I settle in for tonight’s game, but before I do, I’d like to send out thoughts and prayers to the Angels pitcher Jerome Williams, who is in the hospital right now after experiencing breathing difficulty following last night’s game. There are few things more frightening than breathing difficulty and I hope that Jerome has a full and speedy recovery.

Now let’s go Zito! There are few pitchers who need to be beat right now more than CJ Wilson, says the San Francisco Rangers fan. Either way, this matchup of them quirky lefties should be a lot of fun.

Diamond Girl

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10 Possible Reasons People Walk Off Against the Giants So Much

(Okay, so much might be an overstatement.  But once is too many.  Once traumatizes me enough to write a blog post.  And it’s been at least two times this year, so I’m overdue.  Therefore, I present to you: my semi-reprinted blog post from May 21st, last year.  You can read the original right here.  Then proceed.)

10.  The opposing teams are being paid off to not just win, but walk-off win. There are a lot of suspects for this.  The TV networks.  Or B-Squad players who want more innings and opportunities.  Or ridiculously wealthy season ticket holders who want excitement and a little more bang for their buck.  Or, as applies to the Mariners, Starbucks.  They’re from Seattle, right?  So maybe they sell more espressos when there are walk-offs or something.

9.  They have a strange condition like Bella Swan (Twilight, anyone?) that leads them to thrill seek.

8.  Josh Byrnes/Ned Colletti/Kevin Towers/Daniel O’Dowd put their heads together and put a spell on the Giants so that they would not just lose, but lose in cruel and unusual ways.  I know, I love those guys too!

7.  It’s totally random and there is no explanation.

6.  Walk-off win years happen every so, we-get-walked-off-against-years happen every so often too.   I’m not real strong on math, so maybe some probability experts could take it from here?

5.  The Giants are doing it on purpose, because they’re on a mission to prove to Sabes that they really have no offense and they really need to do tons of trades and things before they will be good.

4.  They’re borderline really good, which is why they lose so closely.  (Encouraging, right?  Kinda-sorta.)

3.  They peak too early.  By inning 9, they’ve done everything they’re going to do.  I don’t totally buy this but, hey, they say it all the time about political candidates and everyone knows the politics media is smartsmart.

2.  Karma for giving out Orange-and-Black Fedoras at AT&T Park last season.  Doing evil things can cause you to be cursed, you know.

1.  It’s something in the water.  My vote goes to that.

I need to go lust after pictures of Angels Stadium now.  I am rather partial to that place, although not its inhabitants.  Note to any Giants fans who might be down there for the series: it’s quite lovely, but also Weird with a capital W.  Like, Twilight-Zone weird.  It’s something in the atmosphere.  You’ll know if you go.  Or maybe it was just a fluke the night I was there and you’ll leave thinking, She is cray-zee.  Which I might be.  But that place is still weird.

Diamond Girl

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Who Are These People and What Have They Done With the Giants? – Answered!

So the thing about aliens is that they are generally very friendly, if you give them a chance, and they will stare at you with oversized eyes and glowing blue faces which is all very sweet.  But they also like to, well, snatch humans.  And replace them with aliens.  It’s weird, really, seeing humans have never snatched aliens and replaced them with humans but hey, I do not pretend to understand the thought process of aliens [Hollywood].

My point?  The aliens took pity on us and by us, I mean Giants fans.  They saw the team’s sufferings and the fact that we were going to break all sorts of horrible records with the whole nothittinghomersever thing.  So they turned in their oversized eyes and glowing blue faces for spikes and unis and stole away the San Francisco Giants.  And started hitting homers very promptly.  Lots and lots.  Eight in the last four games.  Three in a row for Brandon Belt.  Homers to deep-part-of-the-park-where-no-one-hits-them-but-now-fake-Melky-did.  I say fake Melky because, as you will remember, he’s actually a blue alien pretending to be Melky.

Yeah.

It was a little disturbing to me at first and kind of made me afraid for the zombie apocalypse (because all sorts of sci-fi characters kind of meld together in my head – zombies?  Aliens?  Same thing!) and I missed the real Brandon Belt, the one who is a Baby Giraffe and doesn’t hit homers, but then I adjusted.  Fast.  Because I like home runs.  We all like home runs.  And aliens are friendly, if you’re nice to them.  So there’s really no problem.  I can live with this.

I do wonder, though, if they’ve also replaced the pitchers…?  Because if so, I’m looking forward to seeing Alien Timmy tonight.  That should be fun.

Diamond Girl

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