Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Take me out to the Ball Game!

Last week my dad and I got to go to a Blue Jays game in Toronto when they played the Yankees. There is something special about baseball. It's this weird, undefinable quality yet it's incredibly satisfying to be a part of. It's strange, when you think about it, the whole game is basically waiting for something to happen, but when it does, there is an electricity that is in the air that ignites and is so contagious to all who are there.

This particular game was a real pitching battle, not much action on the field, but the pitching was great - on both sides. It was a close game. By the bottom of the 9th, it was all tied up 1-1. Rios came to bat and singled for the Jays. Frank Thomas was next (he's one of their big hitters if you didn't know, just a massive guy with the nickname 'The Big Hurt'. Can you guess why?) . He watched the first pitch go by as Rios sprinted to 2nd, slid and was called safe. Now we've got a runner in scoring position with "The Big Hurt" at bat (can you feel the electricity now?). Next pitch comes in and Thomas slams one up the middle and into the outfield, Rios runs to third and the coach is waving him to try to make it all the way home - it's the winning run in the bottom of the ninth rounding third!!! The centre-fielder pickup up the ball and in one motion fires it perfectly to the catcher, who spins to lay the tag on Rios just as he is sliding at home...!!! Rios is tagged right before he touches home plate but the catcher didn't have a good hold on the ball and he drops it! BLUE JAYS WIN! The team runs out to celebrate and the game is in the books - Blue Jays 2 Yankees 1.

Thanks to Amanda and The Famous for the tickets. (the best seats ever, 2nd row behind the dugout!) It was a great game! And thanks to my dad for coming out to the ball game. It felt like old times.

Here are some of the highlights:

Good ol' CN Tower.

Got to love the retractable roof!

And here we have a called strike three - Yer out!

We were literally within 20 feet of the players in the seats we had. Sweet! Here is ARod warming up.

The mascot was getting the fans going.

Here he is high-fiving the guy in the seats ahead of us.

In baseball the players can be any size. I swear I did not photoshop this one at all. As I'm looking at it now though he is tiny!

The banners of past successes were hanging from the rafters. It's funny, when I was younger, I was totally into baseball, and the years on the banner were when I watched. Ending with the back to back world series wins. I still remember where I was when Joe Carter hit the grand slam.

My dad enjoying the game.

Okay - here we go. This is the ninth inning. Rios is up and singles to centre field.

On the next pitch he steals 2nd and is in scoring position.

Frank Thomas connects and drives the ball into centre field. You can even make out the ball flying through the air right around third base.

And here is the throw to the plate as Rios slides. You can see that the catcher has tagged him before his foot touches the plate, but you can also see the ball is out of his glove right beneath his chin. SAFE!

And the celebration begins as the Yankees leave the field.

This guy comes to every game. He was buddies with on of the bat boys from the Yankees who gave him one of the broken bats. It was Johnny Damon's bat, and he was so excited to have it.

We got my dad to pose with the bat. Looking good!

And here is a shot as we were leaving. Check it out - second row behind the dugout, sweet!

The Blue Jays logo with security guard standing on it so that we didn't rush the field, or try to dance on the logo I guess.

And that's the game. Back to you.

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