6-2-09 PNC Park

Today was the Mets’ second of four games in Pittsburgh, and my second attempt at getting a commemorative ball.

I got to the gates a little after 4 PM and was second in line.  When the gates opened, I jogged into the bleachers and was the first one there.  I saw a ball as I entered one of the sections.  I quickly ran down and grabbed ball #1, as other ballhawks were right behind me.  Much to my surprise…
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it was a Shea Stadium commemorative ball from last year.  Nice!  I still would’ve rather had a Citi Field ball, but I’ll take it. 

Moments later as I moved towards the foul pole, I found ball #2.  Finding two Easter eggs is an awesome start, usually there aren’t any.

Ball #3 came from Tony Beasley.  He made sure that all of the regular ballhawks got a ball today.  What a good guy.

When the Mets came out to hit, there weren’t many pitchers shagging in the outfield.  A ball was hit to the 410 sign in center field.  It was very glove “trickable.”  I started to make my way over to get the ball.  Just as I got to the bullpen, a deep ball was hit right at me.  Mike Pelfrey ran back and made the snag.  I thought, “Great.  He’s going to pick up that ball too.”  Luckily, Pelfrey didn’t see it, and walked back to center field.  Moments later, I reeled up ball #4.

I went back towards the foul pole when a fellow ballhawk and PNC Park regular, Dan, pointed out another ball to me.  It must have rolled to the 410 sign when I was walking back to my spot.  I went over and reeled in ball #5 after one failed attempt.  I think I will need a new rubber band soon.  The one I have might be getting to stretched out. 

In the middle of the Mets batting practice, Gary Sheffield launched a deep home run to my left.  I could tell it was a bomb, so rather than positioning myself in line with the ball, I ran back to the cross aisle that seperates the lower bleachers from the upper deck bleachers.  The ball hit in the cross aisle and rolled partly under the overhang of the upper level bleachers.  I reached down and gloved ball #6

I made a huge mistake by heading over to center field for the last group.  The final group taking batting practice was predominently left handed, so I figured I’d have a better shot.  There was only one right handed batter. 

Check out how empty batting practice was.  There aren’t many people in the left field bleachers.
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Within minutes, he was surrounded by security guards.  A man in a suit came out with a clipboard and the negotiating began.  It lasted about an inning.  I’m not sure what the kid asked for, but there were about 4 things written down on the sheet of paper on the clip board.

It got me thinking what I would ask for if I had caught the home run.  I decided that I’d ask for a game ball signed by Jaramillo, the chance to deliver the ball to him in person, and his word that he’d toss me 1 ball at any batting practice I attended (if he was in the outfield and I asked for one.) 

Later in the game, I was getting
thirsty.  I decided to go fill up my water bottle.  As I was passing this Nacho Express stand, something caught my eye.
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Yes, you guessed it.  Another Easter Egg.
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I had to almost lay on the ground to get that picture.  I had to reach around the side of the stand to get ball #8.  People probably thought I was a big weirdo for laying on the ground and reaching under a Nacho Express stand, but when they saw I pulled a ball out, I saw a few surprised faces.

I went back to center field in the ninth inning to try and get Nate’s warm up ball.  His throw hit some guys arm, richoted right in front of me, but I wasn’t ready and misplayed it.  Some one picked the ball up 2 rows ahead of me. 

I then headed to the dugout.  I had to run half of the way there, because Matt Capps got 3 quick outs.  I just barely made it to the dugout as umpire Ted Barrett was coming off the field, but was in a terrible spot, off to the side of the tunnel.  He gave two balls away, but not to me.

That was it for today. 

When I arrived home I had this waiting for me:
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I had been waiting all day for it, since I was off work today, but it didn’t arrive until after I left for the Pirate game.    It was my Super Deluxe copy of Big Whiskey and the Groogrux King, Dave Matthews Band’s new album. 
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The CD was released today, and I had ordered it off of the Warehouse (fan club) so I could get some bonus items.
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I spent the rest of my night looking through the booklets and watching the DVD.  I didn’t listen to the CD the whole way through until the next day because I wanted to blast it, and it was too late to do that.   I’d reccommend picking it up at Target or Best Buy for $9.99 this week.  It’s their best album since 1998.  Seriously.

Today’s baseballs:
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The sweet spots:
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STATISTICS:
Game:  8 Balls (4 hit, 2 thrown, 2 device)
Season: 151 Balls (67 hit, 62 thrown, 22 device)
Games:  30 Games (26 with BP/4 without)
Average: 5.03 Balls Per Game
Career: 317 Balls
Attendance:  10,459

4 Comments

No more Nate McLouth warmup balls. He’s been traded to the Braves.

http://www.mlbtraderumors.com/2009/06/braves-acquire-nate-mclouth.html

http://paintingtheblack.mlblogs.com

So, Busted Stuff wasn’t good enough for you, Erik? Jeez! That entire set-list had me groovin’ when I first picked up a copy. Still does, but now that I know Best Buy is carrying it for $10, I’ll be making a visit today. Good snagging day today man! Sorry about the lack of the Citi Field commemorative as of yet, but once you snag one (knock on wood), take a detailed look at the lopsided-ness of the logo and compare it to the beauty of the Shea Stadium Final Season commemorative. Still, being a Mets fan, I’m not too fond about it at all.

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

Donnie,
I love Busted Stuff. My favorite song of all time, Grey Street is on it. However, as you may know, those songs were all just re-done from the Lillywhite Sessions. They really weren’t new to me when the album came out. I’d been listening to those songs since 2000. Everyday was a disappointment for me, and so was Stand Up. Big Whiskey gives me some hope that the band is back.

As for the Citi Field balls, I’ve heard that they’re not that great, but I still just want to get one. I may make a trip to Citi Field soon, or possibly a Mets game at another venue.

Gotta love Dave Matthews Band. I agree, this new album is seriously awesome.

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