Tag Archives: Colorado Rockies

Cruising The N.L. West, Day Two: Strolling Through LoDo and The Series Finale, Dodgers vs. Rockies 6/30

Leading Off…

20190630_103852So true in baseball…

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Just a little over 20 minutes before 11AM local time on this last day of June. It’s been a humid weekend in the Mile High City, so far the clouds have stayed away. Prior to the series finale I decide to take a stroll throughout the area surrounding the ballpark. 

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What does this neon artwork look like when lit at night?

e9f2August ’06

It’s still early. How ’bout we grab some breakfast?

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Located about a block from the yard, it’s nice to see Kachina uses ingredients both local and Cali made…

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The Blue Corn Waffles sound good…

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I was expecting the waffles to have more of the blue corn texture as described. But that whiskey maple syrup…What a kick. Syrup also can be served to kids but without the whiskey…Back to my pregame stroll…

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Above are pictures of the construction that will eventually become a mixed use entertainment complex across the street from Coors Field. 

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Views from outside the yard on 20th street…

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With the number of brick buildings surrounding the area Coors Field certainly blends in well with the surrounding neighborhood of LoDo. 

20190630_113921The Starting Nine for Colorado…

20190630_114858Greetings From One Mile High…

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Gettin’ that Mile High feeling…

Speaking of One Mile High…

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This now marks the ninth yard past and present our traveling blue fleece has entered. 

The Purple Row

As you may know by now, the Purple Row in the upper reaches of Coors Field, Row 20 to be exact, marks the sport where fans are exactly one mile above sea level…

20190630_115454Back at it one mile high with Blue Dog

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20190630_115156Hey, Blue Dog’s buddy, Bailey decided to join him a mile high…

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If I should ever make it back to the Mile High City maybe one day I’ll ask for a seat in the purple row…Off to The Rooftop

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On the way to The Rooftop we pass through Carlos Gonzalez’s accomplishment. We hear you love L.A. Carlos…

Pregame view from The Rooftop. The day started off so hot and humid you could actually smell the wood along the drink rail. If it was any hotter i’d be able to cook some wood-smoked salmon…

Behind the Batter’s Backdrop

20190630_123849So tempted to pull a piece of that ivy along the backdrop…

20190630_123951Home plate of the visitors bullpen. That’s gotta be one of the most scenic bullpens in the bigs. Gotta wonder how many warmup pitches have skipped away onto that pool of water. How many dingers have landed there as well…

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Our view from our seats. With this yard’s homer friendly reputation does a Cody Bellinger 4-bagger land our way today? Notice the clouds starting to come in compared to the earlier clear skies…

20190630_131025Opening intro for the Rockies. Our pic featuring Charlie Blackmon…

JP to lead things off for us. I get a feeling he’s gonna have a big day today…

20190630_132230Gettin’ my facetime with Cody Bellinger. 

One of the notable changes to Coors aside from the addition of The Rooftop is their scoreboard and it’s unique “Rocky Mountain-like” shape. Without a doubt one of the best boards in the league when it comes to it’s unique quality…Another side note on this last day of Sunday…Earlier it was sunny, now, first pitch, still hot at 92 degrees but now we have a cloud cover…

Ballpark Blueprints…

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When walking the concourse behind the center field batters backdrop you’ll notice this mural depicting the cattle life of the Rocky Mountains up to the construction and opening of Coors Field in 1995…

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View from the LF corner. For still being one of the biggest yards in the MLB, Coors Field feels surprisingly intimate…

20190630_155518Cody at the dish, top 6th. The visiting 6th would see the Blue put up a 6 spot over the Rockies. The three 6’s would not be kind to the home nine…

20190630_161353After feasting and drinking on Rocky Mountain Oysters this time I kept it simple…The Denver Dog…

20190630_165958JP with a big day as I predicted earlier. One of the key contributors to that big 6th…

20190630_170018Josh sure enjoyed that 6th…Now your weather update…76 degrees and cloudy. A 16 degree drop in just under 4 hours…

20190630_170552Well look who decided to join Blue Dog…In spite of the Blue about to salvage the final game of four and their 13th in their last 15 over Colorado, Dinger holds no ill-feelings…

After a little over 4 hours, the Blue finally comes away victorious…

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And I finally see a road win…

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FINALLY !!! A WIN ON THE ROAD FOR DREI !!!

20190630_171723Brought the other Blue Fleece on the road. This is the first time this Blue has left California. Our newfound Dodger buddy Dion, visiting from Wyoming, helped me hold up Blue Fleece II as we battled the Rocky Mountain winds…

20190630_171952My first “real” road trip with Josh in almost 10 years (SF and SD don’t count…). Our last road trip? Albuquerque, 2010, when ABQ was the Dodgers AAA affiliate. Today’s ABQ affiliate? Of course, the Colorado Rockies…

Closing Time…

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It was an enjoyable weekend in the Mile High City. The locals we’re very hospitable. It was great to get out on the road again with my buddy Josh after almost 10 years. Of course, the older you get the harder it is to do everything you set out to do. Heck, I haven’t even been to a game with Kid Marlz this season (Stay tuned…)

Now the third oldest yard in the NL behind only Wrigley Field and Dodger Stadium, Coors Field won’t be going away anytime soon. Even with the changes both in and outside the yard, Coors Field, though does not have that new-stadium feel anymore, still maintains that retro/mid 90s feel if you will. Even with the recent improvements, there isn’t much in the way to distract you from the game. Aesthetically, Coors Field blends in well with the surrounding neighborhood…

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One of my baseball traveling goals was to catch the Dodgers in every NL West yard. One of my other goals was to do it in the same season as well. I’ve accomplished one of the two so far with Chase Field left to go. Along the way during this trip we crossed paths with other Dodgers fans. No surprise there since Dodgers fans always travel well. We even crossed paths with a bride and her besties as they celebrate one last baseball trip together before she ties the knot…(That’s quite a future hubby she got there letting her travel with her besties to see her Dodgers…)

It’s still my goal to hit up all 30. I’ve hit up 16 of the current 30 along with 7 past yards (8 if you count me setting foot inside The Kingdome…)

20190630_174530Time to head home Blue…

20190630_185847Boy the weather sure can change rapidly here…Being we’re one state away from Oz perhaps I should click my heals a few times to get us home…

Extra Innings…Drei’s Tale

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Kickin’ it with Dinger, August ’06…I need to revisit my good ol’ Jurassic buddy…

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Whassup Dinger ! You still enjoy chomping on Surf and Turf? You know, seal from the waters of McCovey Cove and your favorite…Rocky Mountain Oysters !!!

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Cruising The N.L. West, Rocky Mountain Weekend, Day One: National Baseball Museum and Dodgers-Rockies 6/29/2019

It’s been awhile since my buddy Josh and I had a chance to take a road trip, and when I say that, I don’t mean a drive to San Diego…LOL. Upon arriving late Friday evening into early Saturday morning, the night was made even longer by an extremely long rental car checkout no thanks to Fox Rent a Car and an extremely longer wait at Denny’s on 40th and Peoria. 

Having got the most grueling part of the trip out of the way, Josh and I make our way to the National Baseball Museum prior to the Saturday evening match up between the Dodgers and Rockies. But first, our continued feature of murals from cities visited…

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Keep our streets safe Denver…

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The museum is located across the street from Coors Field’s home plate entrance on Blake and 20th. Small and intimate, the museum is a must-see for any baseball fan making their way through the Mile High City. 

Much of what is featured in the museum are original memorabilia from baseball’s original 14 teams including an original piece from the chandelier of Ebbets Field’s famed rotunda… 

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20190629_155729.jpgTurnstyles from Shibe Park in Philadelphia and Forbes Field in Pittsburgh

 

 

Seats and bricks from the original 14…

 

 

Paying tribute to the Denver Bears

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Kicking it with Josh and the man who put this all together, Bruce Hellerstein

Off To The Ol’ Ballgame

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Blue Dog taking in the sights around the yard hours before first pitch…

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A little over an hour and a half before first pitch finds me outside of Coors Field’s home plate entrance. It would be my first time back since ’06 when I saw some kid, Troy Tulowtizky, make his debut…It’s a goal of mine to see The Blue in every NL West yard this year…

As said, this is my first trip to Coors Field since 2006Coors Field, open for business since 1995 is now the 3rd oldest NL yard behind only Wrigley Field and Dodger Stadium. At only 24 years, Coors Field is quietly up there with good company. No small feat considering that the Ballpark in Arlington, opened one year prior, will be out of commission after this season. 

20190629_170853Josh and I kickin’ it with Herbie Husker, the University of Nebraska mascot on Nebraska Night at Coors…

20190629_171440Coors Field water feature, with all the natural scenery home grown in Colorado…

Pregame Bite…The Helton Burger

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The Helton Burger, named after former Rockie Todd Helton is nothing more than your typical burger. But hey, it’s one of those ballpark food items you eat for the sake of saying you ate a ballpark item, you know, like the Dodger Dog…Speaking of, another Coors Field food item coming later…

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Our view from the upper right field stands. It was a warm and humid weekend in the Mile High City. As you can see the sun is doing it’s best to peak through the cloud cover on this Saturday evening…

More Coors Field Eats…Rocky Mountain Oysters

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Some of you may know by now that Rocky Mountain Oysters are not creatures of the sea. They are grown on land from a part of a bull…

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Josh behind me giving words of encouragement. That piece looks more like a chicken strip…

20190629_194429 The look on Josh’s face. That Rockies fan probably thinking “Not another Rocky Mountain Oyster pic…”

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Not bad actually. Maybe it was me channeling my Asian roots…That Rockies fan seems to be in disbelief that I went all in on that Rocky Mountain Oyster…It’s not as bad or creepy as people make it out to be. If you like chicken gizzards or calamari and don’t give this local delicacy much thought, you’ll be alright…(The fans behind me seem to be in disagreement…OK, I guess my Asian genes gave me an advantage…)

20190629_202521View of the sunset peaking through the cloud covers, from the Rooftop with the mountains in the distance…

20190629_203018Ah yeah. Gotta love that view…

20190629_202600Another view from The Rooftop, the most recent enhancement to Coors Field…

The final result from night one of our two day trip to Denver wasn’t what we hoped, with the Dodgers dropping their second straight of four to the Rockies. Oh well. The Blue still has a double-digit lead in the standings. Back at it tomorrow…

20190629_211906Matt Holliday. My all-time favorite Rockie for something he did in a Cardinals uniform in Game 2 of the 2009 NLDS

20190629_212113Hey Josh! Enjoying the Mile High nighlife?

Day One Notes…Return to the Mile High

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Since I’ve already been to Coors this isn’t one of those yards that was necessary to knock of on my journey to 30. Prior to this season I made it a goal to see The Blue in every NL West venue. With my visit to Coors, I’m only a Chase Field visit away from completing my cycle. 

Aside from the recent addition of The Rooftop not much has changed inside Coors since my visit in 2006. As mentioned earlier, opened in 1995 it is now the 3rd oldest yard in the National League behind only Wrigley Field and Dodger Stadium. Unlike the Ballpark In Arlington, opened for business one year prior and now in it’s final season, Coors will be around for awhile. If there’s any doubt about Coors Field status, a mixed-use development project across from Coors Field named after the teams former President is currently in the works, adding on to an already thriving LoDo district…

20190629_204846Construction cranes in the distance, lit purple

Postgame…Rocky Mountain Brews and Eats

Our postgame dining would take us to nearby Wynkoop Brewing Company, established in 1988 (Something about 1988 that puts a smile on my face…). 

20190629_223301Patty’s Chile Beer

First of all, you all didn’t think I came to Denver to drink Coors did you? The first of two brews I tried, Patty’s Chile Beer is one of those outside the box selections brewed with Anaheim, serrano and ancho peppers. For the most part it’s a pretty light beer. The taste of the three peppers are evident but won’t burn your mouth. A Home Run! BTW, this isn’t the only out of box brew I will try…

20190629_223725Appetizers. The grilled sausage board. Rabbit & rattlesnake jalapeno, Wynkoop IPA and wild boar, and rocky mountain oyster stout brat. 

Yup. They love their rocky mountain oyster’s here. That’s not the last item I’ll try that has a “hint” of the Rocky Mountain’s…

20190629_222347Josh playing it safe with the house made root beer…

20190629_224429The Bison Meatloaf. (I had no idea they had a dish honoring Matt Kemp…)

Even with a coarser taste, the Bison Meatloaf is still flavorful and just as good as your usual ground beef. Patty’s Chile Beer made for a nice pair. Speaking of brew…

20190629_222108Our Featured Brew, the Rocky Mountain Oyster Stout

Yup, you read that correctly, the Rocky Mountain Oyster Stout! What started out as an April Fools joke, this dark stout once again isn’t as scary as what you might think if again, you don’t give it much thought, with a hint of chocolate combined with, of course, rocky mountain oysters, roasted no less (Have you noticed yet I’ve yet to give a true description of the famed, or infamous, Rocky Mountain delicacy?) Another hit outta the yard !!! (Disclaimer…I take no responsibility for any conditions you may experience trying anything with Rocky Mountain Oysters!!!)

Day One is complete. The highlights included a trip to the National Ballpark Museum to finally tasting the much talked about Rocky Mountain Oysters in all different forms. Day two will be coming soon. 

20190629_233311Josh and I outside the Wynkoop Brewery. Josh looking all happy because I didn’t force him to “try” one more Rocky Mountain Oyster item…

20190629_234548 (1)After dinner stroll with Blue…

20190629_234702 (1)Denver must have known we we’re coming, giving us that “Touch of Blue”…

20190629_171610Back at it tomorrow, Blue Dog !!!

Extra Innings…One More Bite

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Just can’t have enough of those Rocky Mountain Oysters!!! That Rockies fan seems to have his eyes on “other” sites…

 

Hot Dogs and Independence Day

Leading Off…

DODGERS_ODAY 2010 FLAG

Of course we all know there is more to Independence Day than just hot dogs and fireworks. As always, we thank the men and women who have fought to defend our great country since 1776. America has and will always be great…

Battle of the Dogs… The Filipino Dog vs. The Colorado Dog

 

As we celebrate America’s birthday, many of you will be chowing down on your share of encased meats. Some of you will no doubt be taking part in some back yard hot dog eating contest, no doubt walking it off on your way to the fireworks show at your neighborhood park.

 The sausage has come a long way since it’s invention, with it’s accouterments going beyond the relish, mustard and ketchup. Even with the vast dining options the hot dog still remains the most consumed food item inside the ballpark.

The Dodger Dog. A longtime staple inside the walls of Chavez Ravine. A favorite among many a Dodger fan. As for me, I tend to lean more toward the Super Dodger Dog. For only a buck more, you get a beefier and tastier dog. 

On certain nights, a specialty super dog is served. The specialty dog will be themed around that specific game’s heritage night, the opponent or sometimes both. The specialty dog’s, like most baseball stats, are hit and miss, such as The Pike Dog (Mariners) and The Philly Dog (Phillies)

On this Friday evening, during Filipino Night in celebration of Philippine Independence Day,  with the Colorado Rockies in town in a battle of 2 of baseball’s top teams, both the Filipino Dog and the Colorado Dog would be served. 

BATTLE OF THE DODGER DOGS

BATTLE OF THE DODGER DOGS_FILIPINO AND COLORADO DOGS

So, in the battle of the dogs, which dog would come out the top dog? FYI, it has not “officially” been confirmed yet whether future Colorado Dog’s will topped off with Rocky Mountain Oysters   

 

9th Inning…To Those Who Protect

DODGERS_ODAY 2010 ARMED FORCES CARRYING THE FLAG

 

Outside The Yard: When Professional Athletes Like Sandy Koufax, Shawn Green and…Colin Kaepernick Take a Stand (Or Seat)

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Much has been made these last few days over the last few days over San Francisco 49ers QB Colin Kaepernick’s refusal to stand during the national anthem,” eliciting many a mixed response to the point we’ve asked What does The Star Spangled Banner really represent? “. Debate over whether The national anthem being played is necessary at not only sporting events but other prestigious venues has also been debated. If you even brought up the topic at some point chances are either your “Patriotism” among other beliefs was probably questioned.

Which brings the question: What makes for a true American ? Does taking a stand, or in Colin’s case, a seat, make him any less American? Is he the first one that has spoken over his disdain toward how things are in this proud country we live in? Of course not. Was he disrespecting those who fought for our rights and freedoms? Again, that is up for debate, which is what we, as a nation, have been doing.  

When the Star Spangled Banner is played, how many of you when at the games have actually put your hand over your heart? I see fans who won’t even take their hats off. Fans of all ethnicity. Would you dare walk up to a white fan and demand he take off his hat? Probably not. 

Prior to Kaepernick’s refusal to stand, how many of you, and even until now, even knew or know who wrote The Star Spangled Banner? How many of you even know the words past the first verse? Not many of you huh. Does that make you an untrue American? Of course not. If I was to ask a casual Dodgers fan what year Jackie Robinson broke into the bigs and didn’t give a response would that make him or her any less of a fan? No.

Of course Colin has dealt with a heavy dose of backlash. Of course we’ve heard the standard “If you don’t like it here, leave” quote. Well, I’m sure there will be lot’s of you out there who will complain about our country’s status come November regardless who are leader is. How many of you will be bolting north to the praises of Oh Canada. Yup. Didn’t think so.

 Colin has also received plenty of support from those who truly do put it all on the line. Of course, we thank them for doing everything within their power to protect all our rights…

 

Did Colin burn a cross while draped in a white-hooded robe ? Did Colin protest the funeral of a fallen military hero? Yet these same people who I refuse to acknowledge by name get the same rights of Freedom of Speech that Colin is being vilified for. How many of you have ever gone out and counter-protested?

Colin is far from the first athlete to use his prestigious stature to express his views. Muhammad Ali, one of the greatest boxers of all time, didn’t he refuse to join the military even if it meant being stripped of his World Heavyweight title and possible jail time? Even Jackie Robinson once said “I cannot stand and sing the anthem. I cannot salute the flag”

Taking a stand on one’s belief as we know, is not just limited to politics either. 

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Shawn Green missed a couple of huge games during the heat of the pennant race in 2001 and 2004 to observe the Day of Atonement. 

 (Sandy Koufax, MLB)

 Of course most Dodgers and longtime baseball fans are aware of Sandy Koufax’s refusal to pitch in Game One of the 1965 World Series so that he may observe Yom Kippur. Yes, the Jewish Day of Atonement. 

Yes, it is true that we have a tendency to hold professional athletes to a higher standard. It’s also true that we as rabid sports fans, including this one, tend to place our favorite players on a higher pedestal because of feats accomplished on the field. There will be division among this but hey, it should be OK for an athlete to exercise their right and use a highly scrutinized platform to express their beliefs. All Colin did was refuse to stand for a song that we are all now debating whether it really represents patriotism and whether it should be played before sporting events. Sandy and Shawn took a game off to practice their beliefs. It was their right. The fact that the Dodgers allowed them to go forward and put their beliefs before a huge game says a lot about our Dodger organization as well.

 If there is one thing Colin accomplished, it got ALL OF US talking. Like it, or not…

9th Inning… 

Uh, make that…Top of the 9th…After trailing earlier 8-2…Dodgers down 2…2 outs…Bases loaded…1 out away from a 3 game sweep at the hands of the Colorado Rockies…And then this…From Rookie Andrew Toles…The Rookie who started the year in Single A Rancho Cucamonga…

RANCHO_AFTER SHOCK Hey ! Even AfterShock had to love that !!!

The fun is just beginning…Welcome to September…

Editors Note: I originally finished my post after the 8th inning when The Blue was still trailing…OOPS !!!! ( A good OOPS !!!) Note to Drei…Never publish any in-game thoughts until that 27th out…YOU KNOW BETTER !!!!

Extra Innings…1965 World Series, Game 7

If Sandy had any harsh critics for missing Game 1 over observing The Day of Atonement, he sure silenced them after Game 7…( A “Young” Vin Scully with the action…)

Notes on a Scorecard…Closing Out The First Half…

As the first half of the season came to a close, after going a little more than a month without setting foot inside Dodger Stadium, or a MLB stadium for that matter, I made it back to The Ravine. In a span of 8 days, I caught 4, kept score for 3. The 4th game, that will be a SUN-DAY, FUN-DREI tale from Kid N Drei. 

Speaking of tales, the last time Drei kept score, my Notes on a Scorecard feature was, for one day renamed, Drei’s Tales From a Scorecard. Hey, when you’re keeping score for 17 innings, you come up with more than just notes…

Sunday 7/3/2016 vs. Colorado…

 In the home 1st our rookie sensation Corey Seager would extend his hitting streak to 17 games…

Brandon McCarthy, making his first start in over a year, strikes out 8 Rockies in 5 innings…

Though the Blue would end up sweeping the Rockies, Puig would yet be involved in another base running gaffe, this time in the 4th inning. If you check Yasmani Grandal’s 4th inning AB, it will say a popout 5-4 DP. Of course, it would involve Puig… 

As for Grandal, he would atone for the unusual P 5-4 DP with this solo shot in the 7th…

It’s not often one gets asked to atone for a P5-4 DP  is it ? Grandal would have another huge night 5 days later…

Dodgers 4 Rockies 1

Tuesday 7/5/2016 vs. Orioles

With the Orioles in town for the first time since 2004, this would be the 27th team I’ve seen the Blue play at The Ravine. Once the Twins and Royals come through, which may be awhile, I’ll be able to say that I saw the other 29 at The Ravine…

On this night, Kenta Maeda wasn’t exactly sharp. He would battle his way out of trouble, until the top 5th, when Orioles slugger Manny Machado would do damage…

 

That 3 run shot would be the difference as the O’s would snap a 5 game losing streak with their first regular season win at Dodger Stadium…

Oriole 4 Dodgers 1

Other streaks that we’re snapped… Corey Seager’s 19 game hitting streak…The Dodgers 9 game home winning streak as well as their own 5 game winning streak…

For some reason, the Black and Orange on the Orioles doesn’t elicit such evil hatred…

OH Say Does That Star Spangled Banner Yet Wave…

Orioles fans bringing a Baltimore anthem tradition inside The Ravine…

Thursday 7/7 vs Padres

 Unlike Brandon McCarthy, Hyun Jin Ryu’s first start of the season was anything but memorable, surrendering 6 runs in only 4 2/3 innings. Ryu would strike out 4, but this solo shot by Melvin Upton Jr. may have been a sign of things to come…

We would not know this at the time, but this would be Drew Pomeranz’s final game on the hill for the Padres, as he would toss 7 scoreless while limiting the Blue to 2. It’s that time of year folks where teams look to bolster their rosters for the stretch run. Too bad he couldn’t bolt for Boston soon enough. With the Red Sox coming to town next month, we just may see him yet again…

Padres 6 Dodgers 0

So this 3 game stretch  featured some firsts ( McCarthy’s and Ryu’s first starts, the Orioles first regular season win at Dodger Stadium ) a lot of work put in by our bullpen, and last ( Pomeranz’s last game as a Padre… ) and last but not least, a return of Kid N Drei…

 I have no idea why Kid N Drei decided to go all hipster on this Thursday night… Perhaps SUN-DAY, FUN-DREI will have a better ending ?

Dreis 1st Half Thoughts…

At 51-40 and 6.5 games back, the Dodgers are actually on pace for 91 wins. For all the injuries to our rotation and our offensive inconsistencies, if I we’re to give Dave Roberts a mid-season grade i’d say he’d get a solid B. With the acquisition of Bud Norris and the return of Brandon McCarthy and Hyun Jin Ryu, our rotation may have gone from one of the thinnest to one of the deepest. When Kershaw comes back from the DL it will be interesting to see who goes to the ‘pen. I said prior to the season the Dodgers would win 91 games en route to a 4th straight NL West crown. Will it be enough to overtake the hated ones ? Let the 2nd half begin…

9th Inning…Kid N Drei

 Oh the things we do when The Blue is having a long night. Even our pet Minion Dave doesn’t look so happy…

Extra Innings…Late Night Bites with Kid N Drei

 Kid N Drei with the Big Bites from Fat Sal’s… ( Never again Kid is Drei doing “Hipster Thursday”…LOL )

 

A Wild Wild Finish…It’s Just The Beginning…

Leading Off…

Still talking about that wild finish from what Vin called, The Wild Horse ? Baseball is a crazy game isn’t it ?…It’s no stretch when they say it’s a game of inches. If Nationals SS Danny Espinoza is shaded a couple more inches to his left that hard ground ball Puig hits up the middle gives this game a different ending huh ? A couple more inches to his left and Espinoza forgoes the dive toward the ball and instead of a mob at the plate a possible game ending 6-4-3 ends a 4 game losing streak for the NL East leading Nats and they’re the ones walking the post game victory line. Instead, the Nationals are now on a 5 game skid while the Dodgers are currently on a 6 game streak as well as winning 8 of their last 10.

A game of inches this great game is. For every line drive that finds a glove, a routine grounder finds a hole…It happens…That’s the law of averages…That’s baseball…No big deal right ? Puig keeps the rally going…Now we get runners on 1st and 2nd…Until that ground ball hit that was inches from Espinoza’s glove found more than just a hole…

 

yasiel-puig-walk-off-nationals-dodgers Photo: Harry How/Getty Images

 Nationals Center Fielder Michael Taylor, doing a bat flip ( Not that kind… ) after 1 of 5 times he would strike out ( AP Photo: Chris Carlson )

Striking out 5 times was not even the worst part of Taylor’s night. On a night the Dodgers would honor the current Nationals skipper with his own bobblehead, the frantic finish that couldn’t have been scripted by even the most acclaimed Hollywood writer…Michale Taylor’s performance Wednesday night could perhaps be the worst performance ever by a single MLB player.

My fandom for Dodger baseball and the game started in 1980. Dusty Baker was roaming the outfield for The Blue. I’m not so sure if I’ve seen a performance that was worse than what Taylor displayed Wednesday night. And yet, even with that performance, we all would trade in our bad day’s at the office for his…In a heartbeat. 

img_20160623_164222.jpgDusty Baker Bobblehead…I tend to think this looks more like Pedro Guerrero (Photo: Marly Rivera, ESPN)

Around The NL West…

The Dodgers have won 6 in a row, 8 of their last 10. Unfortunately, the Giants have been hot themselves, winning 11 of their last 12, including a just concluded 6-1 road trip. In that span, the Dodgers have gained a mere half game in the standings, finding themselves 6 back. At 41-33, only 4 other teams currently have more wins than The Boys in Blue. Not bad considering the inconsistencies our offense has endured as well as our health issues among the starting 5…

While the Rockies continue to hang around, while Zack Greinke has recovered from a slow start and another solid season from Paul Goldschmidt, the off-season expectations have not panned out for The Snakes. The Padres continue to look up at the rest of the division and may want to unload some pieces before the August 1st non-waiver deadline. I said before the season that Matt Kemp would be on the trading block and I still believe that. Known for his 2nd half of the season finishes, Kemp has actually had some decent offensive numbers to this point, going yard 15 times with 54 RBIs, ranking 4th in the NL with a modest .268 average. 

Because Kemp has been a defensive liability, something we would not have thought of in 2011, an AL team would be a good fit for him for the stretch run ( Yes folks, I’m thinking Matt as a DH, with some occasional starts in the OF). Perhaps the Astros, who have played some good ball lately, would be a good fit for Matt, especially at hitter friendly Minute Maid Park ?

Now back to The Blue. At 6 games back, the NL West race is far from over. The current 6 game wining streak, 4 of which found them pulling it off from the 8th inning on, should hopefully carry the momentum as they embark on a 7 game road trip that begins in Pittsburgh. 

As we all know, The Blue still needs reinforcements both offensively and among the backend of the starting 5. The latest talk has The Blue looking at both Sonny Gray and Julio Teheran to solidify the rotation.

On The Road…PNC Park, Pittsburgh PA

Dre_PNCPark One of 17 of the current 30 MLB parks i’ve visited, September 2005

One of my favorite parks I’ve had the chance to visit. A visit to PNC is definitely worth the hype… If you can, walk across the Roberto Clemente Bridge on your way to the game. The late Pirate legend has a statue outside the left field gate that every baseball fan should view…

Dre_PirateParrot Kicking’ it with The Pirate Parrot. ” Your Bucs we’re not help against the Jints this week ! ” 

9th Inning…BELIEVE

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A 6 game deficit in June is nothing….The Dog Days of Summer is only beginning folks…

 

Looking Back on 10 Years a Good Dre…Big Game James

In the 10 years I’ve been doing this, I have taken plenty of pictures of both players and personal experiences from The Ravine and throughout various ballparks from various points and perspectives…

picsart_04-23-04.20.22.jpg Today, we feature James Loney, pictured here in 2010 with former Fox Sports West and current ESPN sports anchor Michael Eaves.

picsart_04-23-08.25.21.jpg Universal Citiwalk, February 2008

Loney would wear the Dodger Blue from 2006-12. In that time, James would provide some memorable moments, including a 4 for 5 performance with 9 RBI’s  in a late September 2006 game at Coors Field. Loney would hit 9 home runs in September 2007, the most by a Dodger rookie recently tied with Joc Pederson last May 2015. 

Though James would enjoy lots of success at Coors Field, perhaps he may be best remembered for this home run in Game 1 of the 2008 NLDS against the Cubs… 

The Loney slam no doubt swung the momentum of the series in the Dodgers favor as they would sweep the Cubs, baseballs best team in the regular season, en route to their first NLCS appearance in 20 years.

James recently signed a minor league deal with the Padres so it is possible that we may see him play at The Ravine, perhaps with Matt Kemp. ( As per my preseason outlook, I still say Matt Kemp won’t be calling Petco Park home by July 31st…).

Cruising The NL West…

After some early bullpen struggles, The depth of The Blue, in addition to some stellar play along with some outstanding pitching from Kid K ( as expected ) and The Rookie sensation Kenta Maeda, sit atop the NL West 1 1/2 up on the Rockies as the two wrap up a 3 game series at Coors Field. Arizona, after a 3-7 start, has won 7 of 9 including a 4 game sweep of the Giants in San Francisco. The Giants have won their last 2 after a stretch in which they lost 8 of 10. 

Some of my early concerns right now are with Scott Kazmir and Alex Wood, who have not exactly been the face of consistency to this point. Aside from a shaky start from the bullpen and some inconsistent performances from 2 of our starters, I am satisfied with what The Blue has displayed to this point…

Sun-Day, Fun-Drei Tale…Jurrassic Life Does Exist !!!

picsart_04-23-07.30.19.jpg Having a little fun with my new-found buddy Dinger, just weeks before Big Game James unloaded those 9 RBI’s en route to a Coors Field type win for the Blue, 19-11. If you Dodger fans or other baseball fans get a chance you should check out Coors Field. Like with many yards, though there have been changes since my visit to Coors Field in August 2006, I am confident Coors still remains a yard worth paying a visit to. Check out this recent review of Coors Field from Stadium Journey, including it’s newest addition, The Rooftop

Stadium Journey Also, check out our 2015 MLB Ballpark Experience Rankings to help assist you with your ballpark and other sports travel journeys…