Monday, August 11, 2008

Futures @ Fenway '08 Gallery

Kim, Brian and I walked from the Common Garage and got to Fenway a little after noon. I heard someone calling my name as we headed for our seats. It was former Sox blogger Andrew, and former father of a Sox blogger, Andrew's dad. It was good to catch up with them, before getting out of the sun and into our seats just under cover in the third row of section 24. The first between-innings activity we saw was a repeat from the 2006 doubleheader, that Toothbrush guy. (We didn't go in '07, but I'm guessin' he was there that time, too.)

It was a really nice summer day. Totally comfortable, especially under cover.

Looking over to the Monster. They didn't bother to post the out-of-town major league scores. And Carl Bean wasn't there--I think they used the Lowell and Pawtucket PA/emcee dudes. (Drinkwater and Kapstein also didn't make the cut.)

A Lowell Spinner.

A Hudson Valley Renegade. I've seen a game at their home park with Kate Ziegelmeier and Heather Rine (whose names came up for a completely different reason this weekend, as Brian and I worked with them at Borders ten years ago) in 1998 or '99 when I was living in Connecticut. I grew up across the border from New York's Hudson Valley, and was quite familiar with the "Hudson Valley wea-ther" jingle on K104. It's a really beautiful valley, actually. I recommend driving through it.

Another repeat was the Frisbee dogs.

I don't know why you'd do this to your helmet. Anyone?

Spinners up.

A coupla 'gades.

The game went to extras, with the Renegades' center fielder saving a the game a few times. Here, they're taking down innings 1-10 as it goes to the 11th.

I like the shadowing on their numbers.

A Lowell guy hits a sphere.

HV battery.

There's always at least one punk rock T-shirt at a baseball game. Between this dude and Brian with his Minor Threat shirt, we had both coasts covered.

The center fielder almost saved the game yet again, but couldn't quite come up with the catch on this 2 out, bases loaded, 3-2 hit to win it for Lowell.

And the winning run has officially scored.

The Spinners were totally psyched.

Dudes were falling all over each other.

Brian pointed out the fielder just left the ball where it sat as he and his defensive mates WALKED OFF the field.

Between games we walked all around the park, and got to show Brian all the new stuff since his last visit eight years ago. Here are the Pawtucket Red Sox from above.

Looking to the right from the 1st base pavilion boxes.

Looking down at the dugout.

We realized how hot it was sitting in the sun in these seats for a few minutes. If you squint hard, you can see our apartment, straight ahead. (It's actually a few miles away, but pretty much due north.)


Looking through the light tower at the '04 and '07 flags behind the plate.

The least-used fan-accessible walkway in Fenway, high above Yawkey Way.

From the 3rd base side.

Now we've walked all the way back around from 3rd base to right field, all on the upper levels. It's a good way to do it. What's that down on the roof?

Yes, it's the old Fleet Bank pitch speed board. This is in the same area Empy and I went to recently, when we saw the ESPN equipment. Empy was at the doubleheader, too, but we never found her. Our friends Nick and Eileen found us, though.

The PawSox-Charlotte game has started. The crowd seemed like it was 3/4 full the whole time, but I'm sure a lot of people only went to one game. Oh, and Cyn and Kelly were there, too. We saw Kelly with her big lens in several front row spots throughout the game. Looks like JS went, too.

We got back to our seats, and some dumb blondes told us "someone was sitting there." I said, "Yeah, us!" She got confused, and then some dudes came by and gave us that look like, "okay, kids, joke's over, you'll have to go back to the upper bleachers now..." We told them that we were in our own seats, and they checked their tickets, said they were in row 2, were informed by us that they'd been sitting in row 3 (our seats), and went to their seats. Then they cheered loudly for the Charlotte squad. Above, David Pauley.

The Knights' pitcher.

Dusty Brown behind the plate.

Velazquez about to make a catch. (Even though I wrote Natale's name in the title of the pic. I was clearly overanxious to talk about him, as you'll see below. Plus, he's a second baseman so I kept thinking he was out there, but he was the DH on this day.)

Ron Jon Surf Shop appeared to be miked up.

Joe Thurston up.

This isn't a warm-up pitch, this is the dude's motion. He's a knuckleballer.

And Thurston goes dong off the knuckler.

Joe in front of the Monster.

My boy Jeff Natale was the DH for Pawtucket. Click here for the story of how he met two of my cousins on completely separate occasions. Actually, that's the whole story, you don't really need to click now.

Natale heading back to the dugout. I took a million pics of him, but have spared you the other 999,998.

For the last inning, we went behind home plate. Here's Chris Smith on the mound, obscured by Screeny McCormick.

Pawtucket WINS, a sweep for the Sox organization. Here is a sea of seats behind home plate in the grandstand.


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Location: Rhode Island, United States