4-13-09 PNC Park : Home Opener

100_0696.jpgToday was PNC Park’s Opening Day.  I went today with my wife Holly.  We got to the gates around 10:30 AM, and waited in line for a half hour.  When the gates opened, I rushed in and was the 6th one into the left field bleachers.

Things were a little dry at first.  Eventually, two balls were hit and Ian Snell came to the fence to get them.  I asked him for a ball and he flipped one over his head without looking to me.  It was ball #1 of the day.  Luckily, for the first 30 minutes, only season ticket holders are permitted into batting practice, so I had plenty of room to roam.
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STATISTICS:
Game:  5 balls (2 hit, 1 thrown, 2 device)
Season: 13 balls (7 hit, 4 thrown, 2 device)
Games: 3   (3 with BP, 0 without)
Average:   4.33
Career:  179 balls
Hit List:  179 ties me with Willy Aybar for #3809 all time.
Attendance: 38,411.
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14 Comments

Hey brotha! I guess I got a lot of caching up to do tomorrow night and the following week. I’m shootin’ for seven balls total tomorrow, if not more, and couple of trips to Yankee Stadium and two trips to Citi next week, I should have a nice total for you if all goes well. Congrats on getting your blog promoted on MLBlogs homepage too! Are you traveling to NY at all this season for the Pirates series?

– Donnie
http://donnieanks.mlblogs.com/

Wow, sounds like you had a great day at the ballpark! I love the way the grass was cut on the field! That looks so cool. Congrats on being the featured blog!
http://kaybee.mlblogs.com

Good to see your season is off to a good start! I look forward to a fun season now that we have the “Ballhawk League”

Stop by my MLBlog and say “HI”

John
Major League Ballhawk
http://ballhawk.mlblogs.com
http://twitter.com/mlballhawk

Donnie,
7 balls would be quite impressive for your opening game. I’ve set my goal at 3 balls for every game I go to. Sometimes if I aim too high and come up short, I’m in a bad mood for the rest of the game.

Kaybee,
I always like the designs that ballparks put into the grass too. We’ll probably have this design all homestand, and it’ll be different next homestand. It’s really cool to be featured on mlblogs. Hopefully I’ll get some new readers.

John,
The ballhawk league has added more incentive for me to catch balls this year. I’d like to at least be competitive with the big boys in the league. We’ll see how it plays out.

hey man i definately saw you in the outfield yesterday thinking that device was the coolest thing ever. im not much of a “ballhawk” but tried my hand at getting some balls. failed miserable as i did not have a glove. i did leave with my hands stinging after attempting to grab a few blasts over my head. ill be at PNC on saturday with a glove and a plan to come home with a ball or two

http://pittpeas.mlblogs.com

I agree. LaRoche deserves the hook. Nice reportage. Even nice collection.
–Jeff
http://redstatebluestate.mlblogs.com/

Good job on opening day and best of luck in your league. Be sure to say hi whenever you’re ballhawking at the Mets games.Ashhttp://ashleymarshall.mlblogs.com

Nice haul, bro and congrats on being the featured blog. It couldn’t have come at a better time for our “ballhawk league.”
Good luck…love your park!
“Happy”

http://thehappyyoungster.mlblogs.com/

Nice blog sir. Keep up the good work. Go Bucs!
http://theburghblues.mlblogs.com/

That was a great Game i got Nate,Grawbow, and capps to sign my ball afterwords unfortunately I had to go buy it I didnt get any during BP or the game

http://dominytime.mlblogs.com/

http://www.myspace.com/piratesfans

Jdom-
Sorry you didn’t get any balls yesterday. If it makes you feel any better, the Pirates had “Practice” stamped on the sweet spots, and the Astros brand their balls with a huge black H.

Burgh Blues-
Thanks. This is the year!

Happy-
Hopefully with all of our blogs being updated on a regular basis the ballhawk league will continue to get exposure. We just need to get the rest of us to get caught up to you and Hample to make this more of a competition.

Ash-
I’m thinking about coming to Citi Field when the Pirates play there in May. I have to see some reviews about their batting practice rules to see if its worth the trip. We’ve got a couple ballhawks in the league that have Citi Field as their “home field.” So I’ll wait and see what they have to say.

Jeff-
LaRoche is out of options, so I think we’re going to have to suffer for more hitless games. He was on fire in Spring Training though. Hopefully he can find that stroke again. He hit 3 or 4 consecutive homers in batting practice in Cincinnati. I was watching from right field thinking, “I wish I was over there!”

MattPeas,
The glove trick is cool, but Zack Hample deserves the credit for inventing it. Its become a more widely used tool of the trade. There was someone else at PNC Park on Monday with a glove trick as well.

Erik
http://countingbaseballs.mlblogs.com

Agreeing with you Erik, Happy and Zack are just a little too far ahead of the game right now. When you invite the Masters of Snag to play along, what else did you expect? For them to take it easy on us? Lol. If they both give up games for about a month, and I magically have full season tickets and travel around America watching baseball, calling out for balls in 50 different languages, then I think I would just barely catch up to them, if they stopped now. First game today and the only one this week until our stats are due. I’ll shoot you an email later tonight when I get back from Citi.

– Donnie
http://donnieanks.mlblogs.com/

Donnie,
Even though you might not win the total ball count (which is of course the most “sexy” stat – like the HR crown), you could still win a category like hit balls. Maybe competition factor? The main thing you can work on is trying to move up in the standings. We’re not going to be #1 overnight. I’m just hoping that I can hang onto the #3 spot next week…

Erik

Donnie,
Even though you might not win the total ball count (which is of course the most “sexy” stat – like the HR crown), you could still win a category like hit balls. Maybe competition factor? The main thing you can work on is trying to move up in the standings. We’re not going to be #1 overnight. I’m just hoping that I can hang onto the #3 spot next week…

Erik

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