Results tagged ‘ Progressive Field ’

8-28-10 Progressive Field

I knew coming into today that it would be my final game for the month of August.  To motivate myself to do well in August, I decided that I would try to break the one month record for most balls snagged in one month.  That record was 138 balls, snagged by Zack Hample in August of 2008.

Coming into today I needed to snag three baseballs to break that record.  I made the trip to Progressive Field solo, so I don’t have any great pictures of my performance, but I’ll do my best to illustrate the day.

I was probably about the seventh person in line.  My motivation factor has been declining throughout the season, so I wasn’t there hours before the gates opened to be first in line.  I didn’t even look to see if any of the other teams had taken batting practice.

Upon entering, apparently they did take batting practice because there were seven balls in the seats.  I was able to get two of them in the front row in right center field.  They were within a few feet of each other.  Those two balls tied the one month record.  I just needed one more.

It would come from Chris Perez. 
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Perez whistled and threw a ball in my direction.  There were some other folks near me, so I’m not sure exactly who the intended target was, but it ended up landing about seven or eight rows back in a completely empty area.  The ball must’ve hit an armrest on a chair because it took a fortuitous hop and landed in my row at my feet.  That was ball #3 of the month, #139 of the month of August, and the record breaker.  

I relaxed a bit and wasn’t being real aggressive running after baseballs, despite the crowd looking like this as the Indians wrapped up their BP.
100_4082.JPGbut I only spin PNC Park’s prize wheel under the left field bleachers.

I left, taking home seven baseballs, which brought my total to the month to 143.

Here’s a recap of my busy month of August.  Click on any of the below links for a recap:

7-  8/28/10 Progressive Field
3 – 8/25/10 PNC Park
6 – 8/24/10 PNC Park
7 – 8/23/10 PNC Park
1 – 8/22/10 PNC Park
5 – 8/21/10 PNC Park
7 – 8/19/10 PNC Park
7 – 8/18/10 PNC Park
6 – 8/17/10 PNC Park
10- 8/16/10 PNC Park
6 – 8/13/10 Progressive Field
5 – 8/12/10 Progressive Field
4 – 8/10/10 Progressive Field
8 – 8/9/10 Camden Yards
5 – 8/8/10 PNC Park
10- 8/7/10 PNC Park
6 – 8/6/10 PNC Park
8 – 8/5/10 PNC Park
5 – 8/4/10 Camden Yards
10- 8/3/10 PNC Park
13- 8/2/10 PNC Park
Total:  143 balls in 22 games = 6.5 per game

This likely is my last game at Progressive Field this year.
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Today’s baseballs:
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Sweet spots:

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STATISTICS:
Game:  7 balls ( 1 hit, 3 thrown, 3 found )
Season:  494 balls (240 hit, 113 thrown, 72 device, 69 found)
Games: 77 games
Average:  6.42 balls per game
2010 Game Balls: 5
Career:  1,072 balls
Streak:  173 consecutive games attended with at least 1 ball snagged.
Attendance: 16,372
Balls in the month of August:  143 (new record)
Balls needed to break single season record: 50

8-13-10 Progressive Field

Yet another day at Progressive Field.

When I entered the stadium I found my first ball of the day in the second row back in the second section from the visitor’s bullpen.
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I had to be sneaky about it because there were several people in the front row, so I casually walked over to the ball without looking at it and picked it up.  Had I jogged toward it looking at it someone may have noticed and turned around and grabbed it.

(The ball extended my snagging streak to 162 games with at least one ball snagged.  162 is an important number in baseball – its the number of games each team plays total during the season.)

My second ball of the day was a ground rule double hit by Shelley Duncan.  It bounced into the trees, and was waiting in Heritage Park when I got there,
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STATISTICS:
Game:  6 balls ( 4 hit, 1 device, 1 found )
Season:  431 balls (221 hit, 95 thrown, 59 device, 56 found)
Balls in the month of August:  80
Games: 66 games
Average:  6.53 balls per game
2010 Game Balls: 5
Career:  1,009 balls
Streak:  162 consecutive games attended with at least 1 ball snagged.
Attendance: 26,424

8-12-10 Progressive Field

I was back at Progressive Field today, hoping to snag my one thousandth career baseball.
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I was planning on returning yesterday, but radar showed storms moving through Cleveland all afternoon, so I would wait until today for another shot at 1,000.

When I walked by a bar across the street,
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pick them all up.
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He tossed the ball up and I had to lean out over the railing to just barely make the catch.  When I caught it, I asked Brad if the ball was for me or the kid next to me, who’d also asked for one.  Brad nodded toward the kid, so I turned and gave the ball away.

So, I’d ended the day with five balls snagged.

Here I am in the shadows by the bullpen with ball #1000:
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Today’s baseballs:  (4 pictured because one was given away)
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Sweet spots: (#1,003 was given away)
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STATISTICS:
Game:  5 balls (1 thrown, 4 device )
Season:  425 balls (217 hit, 95 thrown, 58 device, 55 found)
Games: 65 games
Average:  6.54 balls per game
2010 Game Balls: 5
Career:  1,003 balls
Streak:  161 consecutive games attended with at least 1 ball snagged.
Attendance: 14,533

8-10-10 Progressive Field

I started the day just six balls away from 1,000.

I was happy to see that the Indians were taking early batting practice when I arrived and looked through the left field gate:
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And they were left handed.
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STATISTICS:
Game:  4 balls (2 hit, 1 thrown, 1 found)
Season:  420 balls (217 hit, 94 thrown, 54 device, 55 found)
Games: 64 games
Average:  6.56 balls per game
2010 Game Balls: 5
Career:  998 balls
Streak:  160 consecutive games attended with at least 1 ball snagged.
Attendance: 13,541

7-29-10 Progressive Field

After getting a favorable report from Nick Pelescak about Wednesday’s batting practice, I decided to make a third trip to Cleveland.  The Indians decided to open the entire outfield rather than just the right field seats on Wednesday, and they did the same thing today.

I began the day in left field and got ball #1 from Shelley Duncan on the left field wall.
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STATISTICS:
Game:  4 balls (1 hit, 2 thrown, 1 device)
Season:  351 balls (178 hit, 78 thrown, 42 device, 44 found)
Games: 55 games
Average:  6.38 bal
ls per game
2010 Game Balls: 5
Career:  929 balls
Streak:  151 consecutive games attended with at least 1 ball snagged.
Attendance: 34,455

7-27-10 Progressive Field

I had an awful day at Progressive Field.

It started at 3PM with early batting practice.  Nick Pelescak, Happy Youngster and I took 10 minute shifts watching our bags while the other two were outside of the home run porch gate – trying to get a ball.
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No balls would even make it out, despite a good 40 minute or so session.

To make matter worse, at 4:30, I went to look for balls in the trees at Heritage Park, but it was closed for some private party.
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STATISTICS:
Game:  1 balls (1 device)
Season:  337 balls (173 hit, 75 thrown, 36 device, 44 found)
Games: 53 games
Average:  6.36 balls per game
2010 Game Balls: 5
Career:  915 balls
Streak:  149 consecutive games attended with at least 1 ball snagged.
Attendance: 27,416

7-26-10 Progressive Field

With the Yankees in Cleveland, and Alex Rodriguez sitting on 599 career home runs, Nick Pelescak and I made the trip to Cleveland.  So did pretty much every Yankee fan from New York.

Nick and I arrived at the stadium, hoping to catch an early round of batting practice at 2PM and maybe snag a ball outside of the stadium at the Home Run Porch.

It didn’t happen as this was the scene:
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There was a mini baseball field constructed across the street from the stadium, so we spent a good 45 minutes or so throwing there.
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Curtis Granderson:
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Alex Rodriguez:
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Mariano Rivera:
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After batting practice was over, I checked Heritage Park and found one ball, hidden behind the stump of one of the trees:
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I used the Cleveland Stick to snag ball #5 of the day.

Check out the job they did blocking off the trees – I assume so folks can’t run back there to grab A-rod’s 600th:
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As for the game,  the porch was packed.
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So were the left field bleachers.
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But A-Rod would not go deep.

Some pictures from the game:

View from the bullpen:
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Mariano Rivera to Carlos Santana:
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Mariano Rivera:
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The Yankees won 3-2.

A-Rod did not go deep.

And I’ll be back in Cleveland tomorrow.

Here’s today’s balls (4 show because 1 was given away)
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Sweet spots (1 was given away)
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STATISTICS:
Game:  5 balls (1 hit, 2 thrown, 2 device)
Season:  336 balls (173 hit, 75 thrown, 35 device, 44 found)
Games: 52 games
Average:  6.46 balls per game
2010 Game Balls: 5
Career:  914 balls
Streak:  148 consecutive games attended with at least 1 ball snagged.
Attendance: 27,224

6-29-10 Progressive Field

Another day of snagging at Progressive Field in Cleveland.

I was the first one into the stadium, and despite there being early batting practice, didn’t find any baseballs on my first sweep through the sections.  I also checked Heritage Park, where there was nothing.

Upon returning from Heritage Park I spotted a baseball as another ballhawk/autograph hound was picking it up.  I was about five seconds too late.

Since the Indians have a new later batting practice schedule, this gave me plenty of time to search.  I went up and down every row and searched for about ten minutes before finally happening upon ball #1, hidden in the shadows:
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When the Indians began hitting, I would get ball #2 from Shin Soo Choo.  It was a home run that I caught on the fly in center field, fully extended in this area:
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STATISTICS
:

Game:  7 balls (5 hit, 1 thrown, 1 found)
Season:  266 balls (141 hit, 64 thrown, 25 device, 36 found)
Games: 40 games
Average:  6.65 balls per game
2010 Game Balls: 3
Career:  844 balls
Streak:  136 consecutive games attended with at least 1 ball snagged.
Attendance: 11,401

6-28-10 Progressive Field

I arrived at Progressive Field early enough to be first in line, however, it wouldn’t matter, as BP wouldn’t even end up beginning until 4:50PM.

I had to wait as the Indians stretched, threw, and took a few rounds of infield.

Additionally, the cages hadn’t been set up early due to thunderstorms that moved through just south of Cleveland around 3-3:30 (the Indians likely took a wait and see approach – it ended up not raining in downtown Cleveland.

So, upon entering, I looked for an easter egg halfheartedly out of force of habit.  There was nothing in the seats, so I went over to Heritage Park, where this was waiting:
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It was a damp, wet baseball that had likely been there at least a few days.  It also was very badly worn, and didn’t look like it was a major league baseball.  It may have been hit into the trees sometime during the last week and a half when the Indians were out on the road.  After debating on whether to count it or not, I decided to – it is a baseball snagged in an MLB stadium.  I reached in an was just able to grab ball #1 without using my ‘Cleveland Stick.’

My second ball came from Shin Soo Choo.  He turned and threw a ball to a group of kids in the front row.  The ball sailed over their heads and into an empty row about six rows back.  I bent over and picked up ball #2.

None of the kids asked for the ball, but I could feel Choo staring at me.  I looked, and sure enough, there he was, looking right at me. 

I tossed ball #829 to one of the kids in the front row.  Choo saw this, whistled at me, took a ball out of his back pocket and fired a ball at me.  It was ball #3. 

He then ran off the field before I could get his picture to go hit.

I would get ball #4 off the bat of Travis Hafner.
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The ball bounced around and went into the tunnel next to the deck.

No one else was in the area, so I raced over to grab ball #10.  It turned out that was the last BP home run of the Blue Jays batting practice, because as I returned to my spot, the Blue Jays were running off the field.

Today’s baseballs (9 pictured because #829 was given away):
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STATISTICS:
Game:  10 balls (4 hit, 3 thrown, 2 device, 1 found)
Season:  259 balls (136 hit, 63 thrown, 25 device, 35 found)
Games: 39 games
Average:  6.64 balls per game
2010 Game Balls: 3
Career:  837 balls
Streak:  135 consecutive games attended with at least 1 ball snagged.
Attendance: 11,577

6-12-10 Progressive Field

The weather forecast for today kept calling for thunderstorms, but every time I checked the forecast changed, and the storms kept getting pushed back to later and later in the day.

Eventually, I decided around 1PM to go for it, and hoped the weather would cooperate. 

It would.

Despite arriving at 3:45, I was still first in line.
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The boxes you see in the above photo were Shin Soo Choo bobbleheads.  I was a little worried that today would be very crowded because it was a bobblehead night and a Saturday.  However, the attendance was below 20,000.  Kind of sad for a franchise that once sold out 455 games in a row.

When I ran in, batting practice hadn’t yet begun, and there were no Easter Eggs.

After a few minutes, BP got underway and an Indians lefty hit a few balls into the Indians bullpen.

One of the balls was in a spot at the back of the bullpen that could be retrieved with the glove trick.  However, right when I began to set up for the glove trick, Tony Sipp ran by on his way to the bathroom in the Indians bullpen.  I decided to hold off on glove tricking the ball and instead asked Sipp for one of the three balls in the bullpen after he finished in the bathroom.

He nodded and flipped me ball #1.
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STATISTICS:
Game:  7 balls (3 hit, 2 thrown, 2 device)
Season:  199 balls (104 hit, 53 thrown, 19 device, 23 found)
Games: 32 games
Average:  6.22 balls per game
2010 Game Balls: 3
Career:  777 balls
Streak:  128 consecutive games attended with at least 1 ball snagged.
Attendance: 19,484

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