24 July 2010
I haven't been able to think much about the Twins these past few days -- much less write about them -- and for that I apologize. But I had the opportunity to take three family members to a Diamondbacks game last night (thanks, wonderful employers!) and wanted to share a few thoughts, in convenient bullet-form for your reading pleasure.
You know you're in for a good night when a game ball finds its way into your hands before a pretzel or hot dog. Thanks to some agile maneuvering from the papa (and a hefty dose of "right place, right time"), the little brother was awarded with a batting practice ball two minutes after arriving in the ball park and a good half hour before we parked ourselves in Section 122, Row 35.
Even though Arizona left a gazillion runners on base during the game, they were still within striking distance in the seventh inning. Then Kelly Johnson dropped an easy out and the flood waters were loosed. Jonathan Sanchez couldn't find the strikezone to save his life tonight, yet the Diamondbacks still managed to lose. Sadly, this is the norm for Arizona in 2010.
While the home team did their best imitation of a JV squad, my sister and I had fun finding people in the half-empty stadium to make fun of. A kid to our left couldn't decide who to root for, so he simply booed everyone in sight. A large, very intoxicated male San Francisco fan to our right kept shouting indecipherable somethings to anyone who would listen. Seriously, I think I understood about one in every ten words he uttered. It was a fun evening.
Despite playing awful baseball, the Diamondbacks did have a few rallies during the game. Chase Field's insistence on playing "rattlesnake sounds" during tense situations, though, is baffling and, quite frankly, makes me question the sanity of whoever started that ritual. The rattling noise -- which sounds more like leaking gas -- came close to a vuvuezuela-esque level of annoyance. If Chase Field's intent was to make fans cringe when the Diamondbacks loaded the bases, they succeeded. Very much so.
With Pablo Sandoval stepping into the on-deck circle, me to my sister: "Know what his nickname is?" Sister: "Fatty?" It's actually "Kung Fu Panda," but I think her answer is better.
As should be obvious, I'm a big baseball fan. Watching a baseball game is one of the funnest things in the world for me. Yet, for some unknown reason (I had an impressive nine hours of sleep the night before), I nearly found myself nodding off during the first half of the game. This wasn't simply the standard "I'm going to sleep well tonight" kind of tired. I wasn't even in the "I may nap on the way home" category. No, I was firmly planted in the "Keeping my eyes open is a constant struggle and I may go comatose in my seat at any moment" territory. Luckily, a $5 Pepsi (sans ice) provided the shot in the arm that I so desperately needed.
Despite Johnson hitting for the cycle, Arizona lost. They're now 20 games behind the division-leading Padres, are about to trade away their best pitcher and hitter, but a good time was had by all. Thanks for the fun night, Chase Field!