Wednesday, October 7, 2009

What a Weekend - Part 2

What a weekend indeed. Saturday was the GKR Main Event at Citi Field. Sunday was the Mets season finale and the drive for 70 wins. I'll reserve comment on the 70 wins for another day. Sunday really wasn't bad. I was considering in the morning not going. My friend that I was planning on going with decided Saturday night not to go. We each had an extra ticket that we couldn't get rid of. So I went alone. I wasn't letting the pre-paid parking pass go to waste either, so I drove to the ballpark (something I don't like doing). I did find it was exactly 40.0 miles from my apartment building to the parking space in Citi Field's lot, somewhere in what was left field at Shea.

Sunday was a beautiful day, weather-wise. A beautiful day for baseball. A bit of sadness that the season was coming to an end, but good riddance to it. No batting practice after Saturday's long day. No real need at this point. Still, the fans came out, pushed to the outfield sections along the foul line to try to get players' attention (the relief corps went out for some stretching and throwing, which was the only action on the field), and a few of those guys stayed for a long time to sign. Lots of kids down there too. I've started to think it's better for autographs when there is no BP and just the relievers because there's less going on at field level and less people from the club watching and possibly discouraging positive fan interaction (and yes, going back to the Willie Randolph days, I do feel that to a degree. Just come out to Spring Training at Tradition Field with me and tell me there's good player-fan interaction before a game).

I did get to meet fellow blogger Ed Leyro of Studious Metsimus. We really should have a bloggers day/night at the ballpark to get to know one another.

I decided just to try out the new fad of not sitting in your seat and wandering around the ballpark to watch the game from the open concourses. It's a different experience. First, I felt no real reason to stay in my seats. They suck. I said that from day one. But I got a chance to see the imagery that's been added since the last time I was there in August. What they added was nice. I'm glad they did it. It would have been nice to see "space reserved" back on Opening Day to show the promise and forward thinking of images to come rather than doing this based on complaints. I see a real black-and-white theme to the images. And they're sponsored, which for a photo company is a good opportunity but for a fan, it shows no real investment by the club (this wasn't exactly prime advertising space they gave up). Maybe if Kodak sponsored it, the images would be in color.

I really don't like walking around during the game. I never did. I miss so much. I had a walkman, which helped, but still. I find it more enjoyable sitting and watching from one location. That's just me.

It was a good game. Maybe one of the best all year. Weekend sweep. Got to 70 wins. And the complete game shutout by Nelson Figueroa. What a game. What a story Figueroa was. And he's a good guy, always signing autographs. A model player from that respect. We need a person like that on the Mets, and we need a guy like that either as the number 5 or long man/spot starter. Remember that roster debacle back in April. We almost lost him. We did lost him and were damn lucky to get him back. A few moves where we were damn lucky to get someone just to fill a position for the final quarter of the season.

After the game, not well publicized or known to some stadium staff was a DynaMet Dash with Mr. Met (run the bases). This one was set up for all fans. I had heard something during the week about it being only for season ticket holders. Lots of kids went. I asked a security guard and he said everyone. Even the guy on the street could get in since nobody checked tickets. They lined us up after the game on 126th Street from the bullpen gate back to the subway tracks (breaking at walkways and driveways). The line even turned the corner on Roosevelt Ave. They brought us in through the bullpen entrance to the warning track (almost picking up where I had left off from Saturday), down the RF line to first base, and over the grass onto the infield (they had a tarp down to protect the grass). Around the infield with the customary security telling us to keep on moving, and down to home plate, and back under the tunnel under the stadium and out to the LF VIP entrance. That was good, right by my car.

And that was it. 2009 was over. A few photos now.

Leave a comment or drop me a line at DyHrdMET [at] gmail [dot] com.
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