I went on a trip. Some people go on vacation, but I went on a trip with a purpose: baseball. If you want to know what I did, you should read Travels of THB starting with Day 0. You will note many similarities to this blog in these posts, complete with book reviews and sofafree. Bonus points if you guess the relationship between themacinator and THB. No bonus points if you know us.
So I'll skip the description- THB is very good at this, and will include details that I couldn't/wouldn't dream of (such as the elliptical machines- I wouldn't know where to begin on this!). What I can include is pictures, which, of course are worth 1000000s of words.
First we went to Philadelphia. THB has a major item on his bucket list- perhaps the only item that I know of- to visit all Major League ballparks. (I lied- second on his bucket list is to collect a tee-shirt from each ballpark featuring the ballpark.) This is, of course, an ever shifting goal, as ballparks continue to be erected and torn down. Anyway, THB had already been to Citizen's Bank Park, so it was very generous of him to go there again. It was awesome.
This was my first view from right behind where we sat, when we got there over an hour and a half early. There is a sit-down cafe type spot right behind the vantage point, and people were waiting in line to eat there.
It rained the entire time we were in Philadelphia. I'm lying- it stopped for the national anthem, but you can see the clouds were coming.
Although the crowd eventually filled in, they also eventually headed for the hills (or at least under the overhang, which luckily, we were under): here is mid-rain delay.
Again, THB has many more details about this rain delay- wanna see what it looks like when a tarp goes on the field? Or off the field? He's your guy. I only have this scenic shot for you. It was really wet.
By the way, these seats were really good, even though you might be under the mistaken belief from these pictures that they were way out in left field. They were way out in left field, but Citizen's Bank Park is really good. They felt very close, we could see everything, and the guy in the row in front of us caught a home run hit by Hunter Pence.
The next day it didn't rain. Well, it rained, but not during the game. I've fact-checked against THB's blog, which makes no mention of rain, but I am absolutely sure that it rained every single day that we were on the East Coast with the exception of the day we left, at which point it only rained when the plane was taking off. We had amazing seats that day, almost exactly in the spot where we now sit at the A's games- slightly to the third base side of home, right where the net starts to trail off (foul ball territory). We sat next to a father/daughter pair (BIG HINT!)- the girl was eight, and the dad was super sweet. It was very memory-enhancing.
Note: the stands look empty in this picture, but it's an optical illusion. Phil's fans pay approximately 3x as much per ticket as A's fans, but arrive approximately 3x later than A's fans, to see much better baseball. There are also approximately 3x as many people at each game. Near the end of the game, THB moved down one row, and the fan two seats
away from him caught a foul ball. This was not the highlight of the
trip, but it sure was exciting! First Phil's game: win. Second game: loss.
Final note about Philly: nowhere in the entire stadium do they sell a Joe Blanton object. This was the lowlight. The highlight? Not seeing Joe's terrible outing the day after we left.
Then we went to New York to work on the bucketlist. I could go on and on about Citi Field, but it was terrible. THB describes it a little, but in a nutshell, it was huge, hugely overpriced, and full of huge blind spots. I won't blame the rain (both days) on the park, but that wasn't so good, but the fact that we sat in identical seats the first day as we had at the first Phils game and yet could not see center or left fields at all, and though it wasn't raining for the majority of the game, felt like we were in a wind tunnel was not so good. Also, you're not mistaken if you think we were far away. We were far away, even though in theory we were exactly in the same place as we were at the Phillies game. Maybe, we thought, the obstructed views were because they brought the fences in this year. No, we learned, the fences obstructed the view for all the people in the lower deck in right field. Major dud.
The next day was a day game, and we had much better seats, mainly because we were out of the wind tunnel. We thought we had would be able to see the whole field, too, as you get what you pay for, right, (Well, all the seats were expensive), and we were in fancy seats on the first base line. Wrong! A ball was hit to right field and GONE was the ball! Not to the stands, but out of our view. And though you see empty stands here, they didn't fill in like they did at the Phils game. We figured maybe 20,000- maybe a few more, since that's a full A's game, but it was hard to tell. Citi Field is mammoth, and the fans were scattered all over that thing. Once again, I won't blame the Field for the rain, especially since it mostly held off during the game. First game win, second game loss.
The last day we went to Yankees Stadium which I hear is exactly like old Yankees Stadium. I can't go into it, or I'll wretch. The stadium was fine, but the Yankees, not so fine. Mediocre park, expensive, and not full.
THB went to the A's dame the day after we got home. He's a gamer.