Results tagged ‘ c.j. wilson ’
I was real fired up for this game, being that it was the first home game for the Rangers since May 23rd, plus the fact that I was attending this game with my aunt Lori, I was ready.
We got to the park at around 4:05 and stood in line until 4:35 when the gates would finally open. It was hot standing in line, so I knew it was going to be a scorcher during batting practice, but that’s okay I was eager to get snagging.
When we reached the left field seats, the scene was basically the same as it has been the last couple of games I’ve gone to. It was me, a vendor that was out of uniform, and two other guys for the first 30 minutes of BP.
I wouldn’t have to wait long to get on the board either.
Within the first five minutes Josh Hamilton was working on his opposite field power again. I say again because I had snagged an oppo homer from him at this game. Today I would snag another for ball #1 of the day. I didn’t catch it on the fly though, it hit a section to my right and I ran over and picked it up out of the empty row.
Rangers pitcher Derek Holland, who is currently on the disabled list, was in left field directly in front of me and I noticed the hair on the back of his head looked completrly shaved, so I got his attention and asked him if he shaved his head, and he lifted his hat and sure enough it was all gone. I gave him a thumbs up and let him get back to work. A few minutes later he tossed a ball to a guy a section to my right, so the next time he had a ball in his hand I called his name, but to no avail.
The wall in left field has a video board that is actually in the gap between the stands and the outfield wall. Here is the best photo I have to show this….
Sorry for the bad exposure, but it served its purpose. I was actually standing directly above the Min/Oak game summary that’s the 2nd from the left.
That entire video board is air cooled, meaning that there huge fans that are constantly running to keep this thing cooled off. I’m telling you this because after two unanswered call outs to Holland I felt that he probably couldn’t hear me. I then started to realize why I never try for toss ups in the first place. I feel uncomfortable doing it, like I’m trying to compete with little kids, though were none around yet.
About 5 minutes later something odd happened. I’m not sure if Holland did something to get my attention or if I just happened to look at him, but he flashed a ball at me and fired it from about 30 yards away directly into my glove for ball #2. How cool is that? I yelled out a quick thank you and stuck it in my bag.
It wasn’t my first official toss up, but it’s the first one I have gotten without having my daughter Sarah with me.
So, once again I was at my personal record of two (2) balls. I have achieved this total on three different occasions and wanted so desperately to surpass it.
I kept waiting. Nothing was falling into the gap in front of me or the visitors’ bullpen to my left, so I was left with trying to snag on the fly, something I have never done. A little while later a ball finally landed in the gap and I was all over it. Or so I thought. By the time I got my retriever out of my bag and made my way over to the spot I needed to be I noticed that I would not be able to snag this one. Well, not without potentially wasting a lot of valuable time going after just one ball. You see, the ball had come to rest in front of the video board. The best way to describe it is, the wall that the players on the field would hit if they ran into it is actually chain link fence (yeah let that sink in a moment). Then there is about a 5-6 inch space before you get to the actual video board itself which is bolted into the concrete. After that is a 3-4 foot walkway between it and the stands. There, clear as mud? Good.
The ball had landed in front of the video board, but to the very end of it. I possibly could have swung my retriever to try and knock it out to where I could raise it up, but didn’t want to risk losing out on balls that were hit into the seats. So I forgot about it.
Not too long after a Rangers rightie that I couldn’t identify hit a bomb that was going to land way behind me to my right, so I took off up the aisle beside me and made to the appropriate row a split second after the ball hit about two seats in. I grabbed the ball off the ground for ball # 3. Yes! Finally I had outdone two balls. The only downer was Sarah was not with me. When I got home and told her about it she was upset for a moment then smiled and said we would set our own record! I love my daughter!
The Rangers finished up a short while after I had snagged my third ball, so I went to sit with my aunt who had been sitting in the shade this whole time. We watched the first 5 minutes or so of the Rays’ portion and after seeing no balls hit out in that time we decided to head elsewhere. By this time the gates had opened to the rest of the fans, it was hot, I really didn’t want to try and outsnag kids (Fridays are fireworks games so the kids are out in force), so we went over to the Rangers hall of fame since my aunt hasn’t seen it yet.
From there we made our way out to the centerfield gift shop and I was treated to a new t-shirt by my awesome aunt. I got a red Nelson Cruz player shirt. I’m really growing fond of him.
After the shopping we got drinks and cheese fries and headed to our seats in the upper deck. Section 339 row 1 seats 9 and 10. The best part about these seats is the fact that the sun was behind us! See ….
The game was slow. By slow I mean it was a 7:05 start and by 9:00 it was just the fourth inning! So food was a big player this evening. After the cheese fries there was kettle corn, a hot dog for my aunt, a cheeseburger for me, sunflower seeds, ice cream, and of course drinks. Lemonade was the drink of choice tonight.
There was some offense to be seen, Josh Hamilton (my favorite Ranger and possibly favorite player) hit a solo shot in the fourth inning. Rookie first baseman Justin Smoak hit a 2 run shot of his own in the second. The Rangers were down 4-0 before Smoak’s tater, then exploded for 7 runs in the bottom of the fourth to lead 9-4. The Rays would add single runs in the 6th and 7th but would fall short, losing 9-6.
The starting pitcher for the Rangers was the normally on fire C.J. Wilson. Although tonight he would only last 5 innings, giving up 5 runs (3 earned) on 6 hits, with 5 strikeouts and 4 walks, while picking up his fouth win. Neftali Feliz came in to pick up his 15th save of the season.
Here’s a goofy shot of the 3 balls that I came away with tonight….
Time of Game: 3hrs. 10mins.
Next Game: Not really sure, either Thurs. 6/10 vs. the Mariners or Fri. 6/18 in Houston
I was looking forward to this game for two reasons: 1st-The Rangers were just getting back from a 7 game road trip, and 2nd-Josh Hamilton was going to make his first start after coming off the 15-day DL.
My friend Dirk & I got to the ballpark right at 5:00, and made it into the left field seats at about 5:10, so there were already people in the stands since the gates open at 5:05. Oh well, it wasn’t that crowded, so I still felt pretty good about our chances.
The Rangers were already hitting when we walked in, so we ran down to the front row, but out of about 12 hitters, 2 of them were righties (and we were in LF). We thought about moving to RF, but it was too crowded, so we decided to stick it out in left.
During the Rangers portion of BP, I think only one or two homers were hit in our direction, and the closest I could get was about 5 feet away. Blah. I got C.J. Wilson’s attention once when a ball rolled to the wall & he came over to get it. I called his name and held up my glove, and he looked right at me, and then threw the ball back in. Nice.
During the Mariners portion of BP, I still thought we had a good chance, because I had printed out their roster, coach list, & even made a cheat sheet of about 7-8 players with their photo, last name, & jersey #.
It came in handy only from the standpoint that I was the only one around shouting out first names, while everyone else was forced to shout #s since their warmup jerseys didn’t have their names on them. A few guys turned to look when I called their name, but I think it was because they were surprised that anyone actually knew them.
The Mariners’ BP was different for me, because the first 15-20 minutes or so was all of the lefties. Some would try to go opposite field, but they never reached the seats.
Then finally, the righties came up. Yay! It was short lived. Not only do their right handed hitters not have big time power, but I don’t think 1 of their balls hit the seats. As opposed to the lefties, which includes Ichiro, AND Griffey. (I was starting to think that we probably should have fought the crowd in RF).
Watching Griffey hit was pretty cool. I can’t remember, but in all the years that I have gone to baseball games, I think this may have been my first time to watch him take BP. And boy did he put on a show! He still has it, that’s for sure.
Batting practice came and went, and I was left empty-handed. I guess I had gotten a little spoiled, since the last two games I went to that had BP, I was able to come away with a ball each time. Oh well, there’s always next game!
Just in case you haven’t noticed, I didn’t take any pictures at this game. My wife needed the camera this same night, so I had to do without. Maybe that’s why I was shutout, I felt awkward even being there without a camera. Is that weird?
Our seats were in left field, and we stayed there until the 4th inning, when we decided to move to the 2nd level behind home plate to go for foul balls. Didn’t get any, but I still like going up there.
In the bottom of the 8th, we moved down to the 1st level behind home plate on the 1st base side. Nothing there either, but you can’t beat that view!
The game itself was good. Scott Feldman pitched 6-1/3 innings, giving up 1 run on 4 hits, with 2 walks and 2 strikeouts, and getting a no-decision. Derek Holland picked up his 1st win in his young major league career, and Eddie Guardado got the save.
Rangers win 7-1, Hamilton hit a 2-run homer in the seventh to break a 1-1 tie, and opened up a six-run rally.
Time of game – 2 hrs. 50 mins.
Attendance – 16,564.
Next game – 5/23 in Houston.