Thursday, March 31, 2011

Greetings From Houston

This shot is from the lot where I parked for $10. (Three more than what my game ticket cost.)

Was one of the first ones in at 5:35. Here's my first Papi shot of '11.

The FAKE Citgo sign.

My first look at Adrian Gonzalez in a Sox uni.

Ditto Carl Crawford. (Who during the game had a scoreboard montage about him for being the 2010 "Houston Area Player of the Year."

A ball went to the second deck in right field and it looked like no one got it. So I went all the way up there, only to find out you need a ticket for that whole section. An hour before an exhibition game. Get with it, all parks not called Fenway. So here I am back down below.

They have these little boards for the fans out there.

In the VOMITorium.

Dice K out in center field.

Little tiny Dice K balances on top of fence!

In left field.

Scoreboard and Sox pitchers.

I didn't know Pete Abrams would be dressing. Hey-o!

You can go WAY up out in the left field corner.

Up high still.

That train.

Train again.

Top two things I love to get pictures of: broken bats, and scoreboard malfunctions.

Carl up.

Adrian up. Everybody hit in the first, staking Beckett to a 5-0 lead.


Night falling. Look closely and you'll see there are some obstructed-view pole seats in the upper deck.

I moved all around the upper deck.

The last row.

The center field cliff.

Train with its oranges.

You can't see the skyline from the park, unless you're out in right field.

Clemens' kid.

Final: 10-0 us.

It's not that warm in Houston. I wore just my Nomar T-shirt but as night fell, it got chilly. Most people had sleeves. I wonder why it was such a sparse crowd. Would have been even worse had they not canceled that second game. Plenty of Sox fans in the house. It was even, maybe 60-40 Astros fans, but you couldn't really tell since it was so empty. The PA guy had this overdramatic voice, and even when he's announcing the visitors, he has this extra throaty finish, like a pilot: "Dustin...PedroiuhHhHhHhHhH."

My personal pizza cost $8. They charge low ticket prices but high food. The scoreboard is new and huge and hi-ass def. At the 7th inning stretch, they do play "Take Me Out to the Ball Game," but after it they play "The Stars at Night are Big and Bright," at which point the Texans and anybody who saw Pee-Wee's Big Adventure clap four times enthusiastically the first time, less so each subsequent time.

Overall it's a nice park. I would have liked to have seen it with the roof closed--there's that big glass section that fills in over the left field fence. Most people are nice, too. The ushers say hi, etc.

So now the Red Sox and I have a day to kill in Tejas. I just wish San Antonio was between Houston and Dallas. Or at least Austin.

"I wonder why it was such a sparse crowd."

Because nobody in Houston gives a crap about regular season baseball, let alone exhibition games?

That is one ugly-ass stadium from the outside. Houston remains the only major league city that I passed on a road-trip opportunity (back in the days of the Astrodome).
Oops, I accidentally commented under my alternative account.
I really, really wish I was in Texas... Happy Opening Day!

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