We made the 5hr + trek to the Dome, arriving in the Twin Cities around 2pm. Our hotel was 7 blocks from the
spaceship stadium, so, we made the walk.
Eventually, this was our view…
Take a look at this little ticket booth located outside of GATE B…
The gates to the stadium opened 2 hrs. before game time. This was a nice surprise. I don’t get why all major league teams don’t do this. Makes no sense to me.
When I did enter the stadium, I was reminded how terrible The Metrodome is for ballhawking.
BIGGLOVEBOB, I feel for you brother.
Right field corner…
…and the retractable right field seats.
Used only for football games at the Dome.
…I’m willing to bet the fine folks of Minnesota won’t lose any sleep when they move out of this place.
When I entered the stadium, the Twins were on the field. They weren’t hitting anything into the stands. They weren’t tossing anything up, either.
I noticed the Brewers pitchers were out in right field warming up, so, I headed over there.
When I arrived, Brewers pitcher JEFF SUPPAN was finishing his warm-up. I asked him for the baseball and he lobbed it high into the seats, right to me. I had BALL #1 on the day. I took a closer look at it-COMMEMORATIVE ball!! Woohoo!
I made my way back over to left field because the Brewers righties were now in the cage.
The Brewers weren’t tossing many baseballs into the crowds. They barely noticed we were there, actually. I don’t get that. Over the years, I’ve noticed that the players that have more fun with the fans just have more fun in general. Just my observation.
Anyway, about 20 minutes passed with nothing. The stands were filled with fans. It was becoming a challenge. The Metrodome is a TOUGH place to ballhawk. Wow.
Eventually, Ryan Braun took his turn and started launching some bombs.
One was hit high to my right. I was in deep left-center field. I ranged to my right about 20 feet and squeezed it on the fly for BALL #2. Sweet.
Another 20 minutes passed with nothing. I was in the middle of thanking a higher power for not living in Minneapolis when I noticed something. A ball was sitting down the left field line about 8 feet out from the wall near the Twins bullpen area.
Since the Brewers weren’t tossing baseballs nor were they hitting baseballs, I decided to go try my luck.
When I arrived, I politely excused myself all the way down to the front row. The ball was still there, yet to be claimed. The area was packed with fans. Before I started to go to work on the ball, I asked anyone in ear shot the following:
“If I can get that ball off the field without stepping onto the field, does anyone think that’s stealing??”
In a pretty simultaneous response, everyone (and I mean every single person) stated, “no.”
I said, “alright” and went to work.
After approx. 5-7 seconds, BALL #3 (which had ‘LOOKIN’ SHARP’ written on the sweet spot) was reeled in. Another 5 seconds and the ball was in possession of a young Brewers fan.
His Mother thanked me. His Father shook my hand. People lightly cheered and complete strangers were thanking me.
Wow…good people (strangers) really DO exist.
(My apologies for being a bit hardened by the past week’s turn of events)
Eventually, the game began.
…SECTION 101/ROW 9/SEAT 1
…perfect home run territory in left-center field.
Take a look at my view straight ahead…
…see that chair at the bottom of the steps? That’s for Twins security to sit in while the game is in progress. The Minnesota Twins do not allow fans in the first 2 rows. Most likely due to potential fan interference. That’s unfortunate…those 1st two rows are right on the wall.
Nothing would be hit my way as the Twins bottled up the Brewers 11-3. Twins RF Michael Cuddyer hit for the cycle in the process…very cool. His home run went over my head and to the left by about 15 rows…absolute bomb. His double was a ground-rule double to the front row 1 section over to my left. Those would be 2 cool balls to snag.
The two commemorative balls I did manage to snag…
Finals for the day…
2009 BALLHAWKING STATS
- 3 total balls 5/22/09
1 batted ball (caught on fly)
1 toss-up ball
2009 TOTAL BASEBALLS
4/7/09 = 5 baseballs
4/8/09 = 10 baseballs
4/9/09 = 10 baseballs
4/10/09 = 3 baseballs
4/11/09 = 5 baseballs
4/12/09 = 5 baseballs
4/13/09 = 11 baseballs
4/14/09 = 6 baseballs
4/21/09 = 5 baseballs
4/27/09 = 15 baseballs
4/28/09 = 9 baseballs
4/30/09 = 4 baseballs
5/01/09 = 7 baseballs
5/02/09 = 4 baseballs
5/08/09 = 11 baseballs
5/09/09 = 1 lousy ball
5/12/09 = 14 baseballs
5/13/09 = 12 baseballs
5/19/09 = 8 baseballs
5/22/09 = 3 baseballs
148 baseballs (20 games)
7.4 average per game