6/27/14 at Oriole Park
Oriole Park was exactly what I needed. I’d been slumping at Citizens Bank Park, and hadn’t been pulling in the number of balls that I was in 2013. A Friday and Saturday night game in Baltimore would be perfect. Easy batting practices and commemoratives would be the perfect break out performance.
Spoiler. It didn’t happen.
Friday was changed to a doubleheader, and Saturday was the State of the O’s, which basically meant that every Oriole season ticket holder would be at the stadium before the gates opened, but that’s for the next entry.
With lower standards, I hoped to keep up with my recent pace of three baseballs a game, as much as that was down from 2013, or even the beginning of this year, and thankfully, I did.
As soon as the gates opened, there was already action, as a few Rays were down the line.
I know for sure that the catcher is Scott Cursi, but as you’ll notice in the next few entries, I really don’t know too many Rays pitchers. Anyway, as you can tell, the warning track is really wet in the above picture, so when the pitcher overthrew Cursi, the ball ended up getting wet. You can see it in the picture above right on the edge of the track. Instead of getting a new ball, the pitcher decided to not get a new one and that he was done throwing so Cursi tossed me the ball as he walked in.
The seats were so empty though. If only it was like that during the weak batting practice that went on the next day…
I would eventually be able to use the emptiness to my advantage, as a few more Rays came out to throw.
When Juan Carlos Oviedo (in the foreground of the above picture) finished throwing, it was an uncontested tossup.
I wasn’t too concerned about only getting a few baseballs, because this was my view for the game.
At some point, one of the Rays flew out to center field, and Adam Jones was looking for someone to throw the third out ball up to. He looked in my direction, and let the ball fly. I’m not that tall if you can’t tell, so although I tried to jump, the ball ended up going right over my glove.
I was trapped against the railing, so I couldn’t get onto the aisle quick enough, but if I was able to, I probably would have at least came close to the Manny Machado homerun that was two sections over from me. If I had an aisle, I definitely would have been close, but Grant Edrington was able to make the grab of it off of a bounce.
Obviously, losing the two commemoratives stung, but I still wanted to pull at least one more baseball out of the day.
There were no more game used baseballs in our area, but Jett Ruiz did toss up a ball to me when one of the O’s pitchers finished warming up in the bullpen
2014- 27 baseballs caught (352 Lifetime)
3.8 Balls per game :(
36 Autographs (Tony Franklin, Marcus Thames, Tommy Phelps, Orlando Mercado, Manny Barreda, Jeremy Bleich, Joel De La Cruz, Aaron Dott, Jairo Heredia, Cole Kimball, Bryan Mitchell, Diego Moreno, Branden Pinder, Charley Short, Matt Tracey, Pat Venditte, Francisco Arcia, Tyson Blaser, Gary Sanchez, Carmen Angelini, Ali Castillo, Rob Refsnyder, Rob Segedin, Zach Wilson, Taylor Dugas, Ben Gamel, Yeral Sanchez, Mason Williams and Jesus Tiamo (3X), Jeff Manship, Jonathan Papelbon, David Buchanan, Bob Stumpo, Rod Nichols)