We arrived 6:45 AM at Hi Corbett field and as we were driving up to the stadium we saw Clint Hurdle and Don Baylor returning from their morning walk/jog. We parked real quick and ventured out to meet up them on the street.
Me with my 1978 Sports Illustrated magazine and Andy with an Inaugural Rockies program with Baylor’s picture on it.
Clint refused(he said to catch him later), but I was able to plug the Rockpile Rant with Clint listening and he thanked me for my support.
That was pretty cool. On a sour note, twice now Vinny Castilla has blown right by me and refused to sign. Today as I held the RPR banner out with twenty other Rockies autographs on it Vinny said to me again “I’m not a player man”. He wasn’t very nice about it either.
I might understand his refusal if I was one of those guys standing there with fifteen baseball cards and wanted him to sign each and every one of them(believe me I’ve seen that here).
But that wasn’t the case, I was standing in front of him with a hand drawn TEAM banner.
He deserves a full fledge Rant but I’m on vacation and that takes way too much energy.
So Vinny, keep your autograph. It means more to you than me.
NOTE: This blog was not created to slam individual players. However I am a reality blogger and when somone is in your face rude, that’s REAL to me.
Here’s a closer look. There are twenty autographs on this banner in this picture. I’ve added two more since I took the picture. Josh Fogg and Glendon Rusch.
In 40 minutes we’ll be heading over to the practice fields to see what kind of trouble we can get into…More later…D
I’m back from the practice fields. I was really lucky today.
Not only did I get 22 autographs on my banner this morning I managed to get 4 more autographs on my World Series ball. I had one baseball that Jason Hirsh signed in the wrong place so I decided to turn that baseball into a team baseball.
While I was watching batting practice in the practice fields, I decided to head out into the outfield and see if I could catch one of Helton’s BP homeruns. I was standing out there about maybe twenty minutes and then Helton hit one over to my area but it didn’t go over the fence.
Ian Stewart came over to pick it up and I asked if I could have it. He looked at me and said “Don’t worry he’ll hit one over. Not two minutes after he said that Helton hit two in a row to me.
One I caught on a bounce and one I snagged while it was still rolling.
My day gets better…After I snagged these two baseballs I headed over to get my ticket for the game. It was T-shirt day and I wanted to make sure I got one.
After I picked up my T-shirt and headed back to the practice fields to watch the rest of batting practice. When it was finished I saw my opportunity to get Todd Helton’s autograph on my bat and I took it.
Mission complete. I am now the proud owner of one Todd Helton autograped Big Stick bat and one Todd Helton World Series baseball.
Rockies vs Dodgers
This was the third pre-season Rockies game I have been to this season and it is the third loss I have witnessed. Here’s a breakdown of the hitters and I’m not even going to go into pitching.
Final Score: Dodgers 13 Rockies 5
Eric Young 0-4 with two errors.
Scott Podsednik 0-3.
Troy Tulowitzki 0-3.
On a bright note, Matt Murton went 2-3 with one run and Joe Koshanski 1-2 with one home run scored and two RBI.
Two more Rockies games while I’m down here. One more at Hi-Corbett and one against the Brewers at the Maryvale Baseball Stadium. I need to see a win. I’ve pretty much accomplished what I set out to do down here and it would be nice to drive home buzzing with a win.
It will happen, remember I’m a BELIEVER.
Are you ready for a picture show of epic proportions? I swear I could do this for a living.
All of the pitchers doing their morning warm-up stretches.
Some of the big hitters warming up, I like this picture.
I heard him say at batting practice after hitting a couple of nice hits “I got those but I couldn’t even hit a foul yesterday.” Big Sal (who’s also a blogger), Todd Helton and Ian Stewart.
Big Sal and Chris Iannetta.
Helton or as he’s known here “Sweet T” betcha didn’t know that.
Barmes about to scoop up a grounder. He has been extremely cool about signing stuff for me this trip. Thank you Clint. He hit really well today.
Taking a break.
Clint Barmes rubbing his bat.
It’s getting late and I haven’t even posted the game pictures that I took today. I’ll go ahead and do that tomorrow. I can’t let this entry end without letting you know how the Vinny Castilla thing turned out can I?
If you remember Vinny was a little rude this morning and tried to play me for a chump. It’s too bad because up until today I really liked Vinny Castilla.
As I was walking past Vinny’s Porche I saw something sticking in the window.
Sorry Vinny you can’t play the Ranter…Back atcha tomorrow…D
I’m killing some time until tomorrow morning when I’ll be back at Hi-Corbett. Here are some more pictures from yesterday. Enjoy…D
Garrett Atkins out there having a good time.
Helton and Hawpe at batting practice.
Some more pitcher pictures, say that three times fast.
Rockies catcher Michael McKenry.
Another Rockies catcher Wilin Rosario.
Here is everything I’ve managed to get autographed this trip minus my Big Stick bat which currently has 16 autographs on it. I have one more black Big Stick bat and my plan is to get Todd Helton to sign it tomorrow. I’m not greedy so if it doesn’t happen I’m ok with that.
I attend a lot of games at Coors Field and I’ve never been able to get Todd’s autograph. I’m just never at the right place at the right time as far as he’s concerned. With other players I have been very fortunate.
If it’s ever going to happen twice (getting Helton’s autograph), this place (Hi Corbett), is the place to get it done.
Jorge De La Rosa signing my WS baseball.
I have to tell you about something I witnessed the other morning as Andy and I were hanging out in the parking lot of Hi-Corbett for the player meet and greet. We noticed that baseball card collectors actually whip out a whole page of cards and the players will usually sign most if not all of the cards on the page.
I watched Juan Morillo sign nine baseball cards for a collector. This collector had skills and has mastered the art of “player small talk”.
Here’s # 46 Ryan Mattheus pitcher signing my baseball.
I suck at “player small talk”, but it’s something I’m working on. It’s not that I get starstruck (except for Helton), it’s that I’m not great at initial small talk with anyone.
Give me five minutes and I’ll talk to you like I’ve known you for years. Don’t believe me, just ask anyone who’s known me for more than five minutes.
We figured we might have a tire problem last night as it wasn’t taking enough air. This morning when we woke up it was flat. I made a call to Good Sam and we had a dude named Jimmy from Purcell’s Western States Tire show up within an hour.
First thing Jimmy said when he pulled up was “Go D-Backs”. I thought to myself sheet, maybe I should have pulled down the Rockies stuff in the windows because this tire change is gonna cost me. Jimmy was totally cool and had it all fixed within an hour.
Total cost to fix the leaky valve stem: $ 27.00. I couldn’t believe it. We got off lucky.
2-26-09 8:33 AM
Andy and I showed up early (6:30 AM) and were the first ones here. Yesterday we were the only ones here all morning and we didn’t go after the morning autographs. Today at around 7 am a group of autograph hunters showed up. Things were really slow at first and I had a few players turn me down.
Then Chris Frey showed up and was kind enough to sign for the group.
Next was # 23 pitcher Greg Smith.
Taylor Buchholz signed and was real friendly.
Here’s # 48 Jason Hirsh, he signed for me yesterday too, nice guy.I didnt get pictures of all the players who signed my bat. Sometimes taking pictures and chasing down players doesn’t work so well together. I can tell you I was hoping to get a few autographs on the bat today and I ended up with 16 signatures.
Garrett Atkins, Troy Tulowitzki, Omar Quintinilla, Carlos Gonzalez, Ian Stewart, Taylor Buchholz, Franklin Morales, Matt Murton, Greg Smith, Glendon Rusch, Ryan Spilborghs, Michael McKenry, Luis Gonzalez, Matt Miller and Steven Register. One I’m still trying to figure out.
Best two hours of autograph collecting in my life, un freggin believable. The Rockies are awesome for taking care of their fans.
I saw Todd Helton going in, I couldn’t catch him and he wasn’t signing this morning. Tomorrow morning I’m making a sign that says “Mr Helton I’ve been trying for 8 years to get your autograph, will you please sign my bat” I hope it works.
12:27 I’m back.
Look who I ran into.
You’ll never guess what he did for me.
I also obtained autographs from Brad Hawpe (whom I’ve never managed to get before) and Chris Iannetta, both on World Series balls. I’ll post all that later. Time to go watch game two agains the White Sox.
Oh, I got some video of Helton at batting practice and he was killing it. He hit farther than all the other players. He looks healthy and strong to me. Todd was cool to me when he signed my baseball. All I had time to say was “It’s an honor and thank you very much”.
What a day, and it’s not over. Finall, I snagged my favorite players autograph and watched him take BP ten feet away from me. I’m so glad I made this trip this year.
2/25/09 7:35 AM
We’re here parked in front of Hi-Corbett Field. We were told we could have the MBU parked here till 9 AM then we have to move onto the street. No worries, our parking spot on the street was only 20 feet behind where we’re parked now.
We’ve been watching the players pull up. I saw Garrett Atkins and Tulo pull up but I wasn’t ready and only had time to snap a quick picture. Tomorrow I’ll be ready for the early morning meet and greet.
Here’s Glendon Rusch
The MBU looking all pretty.
9:47 AM. Moved the MBU out to the street in front of the stadium. Beautiful spot, right now were just waiting for batting practice to start. Gates open at 11 AM.
That’s live blogging baby, I’m in my zone…D
Andy and I were one of the first five people in the stadium when they opened the gates at 11. We proceeded to head over to our seats which were to the right of the Rockies dugout.
I wasn’t standing there a minute when a ball was hit over by me and Clint Barmes scooped it up and tossed it to me.
My side of the story was it was a little short, but after I missed it he walked over and tossed it to me.
Thank you Clint you made this snaggers day.
Ian Stewart signed my second ball. Thanks Ian !
Tulowitzki, he walked up to where I was standing and started signing, I realized I had grabbed the wrong ball. By the time I had grabbed the right one, he was already moving down the line. Andy didn’t get his autograph either.
Andy’s goal is to get Tulo’s autograph on a visor for his wife.
Clint Barmes is always cool and signs for the fans.
The crowd for Spring training home opener, a little over three thousand. Must have been because Tiger is in town, I hope.
A shot of Aaron Cook warming up about four feet in front of my seat.
Taylor Buchholz My favorite player under six foot, Omar “Q” Quintinilla
In case you’re wondering, I didn’t even see Todd Helton today. I did hear rumors of his presence. Several fans mentioned that they had run into Todd walking back from the practice fields and he signed for them.
Here’s Rockies catcher and fellow MLBlogger Michael McKenry
Take a look at the temperature. We were expecting highs of 80’s. Today was freggin hot.
I haven’t done this one in a while but this lady is deserving.
Here it is: The most annoying fan of the game.
Sad to say she was a Rockies fan.Her seats were behind us but she and her four children felt they had the right to run around and block our view more times than I cared to count. She was loud, rude and inconsiderate.
Bask in it lady, next time bring leashes.
Jason Grilli signed a World Series baseball for me.
Ahh, the first game. It is what it is. The Rockies lost this scorcher to the D-Backs 5-3. Here’s a picture of everything we got today. Sorry to say two of the autographs I’m still trying to figure out who they are.
Here is what I ended up with at the end of the day. Ian Stewart, Ryan Spilborghs, Manual Corpas, James Hirsh, Jason Grilli, Carlos Gonzalez and two more I’m embarassed to say I’m not sure of. One is a coach and one is a minor league pitcher.
We’ll be at Hi-Corbett around 6 AM tomorrow and I’ll have my bat with me a welcoming the players at the gate
One more night’s sleep, one quick day of work and it’s time.
Also not the Mobile Blog Unit, nice color though.
This is not the Mobile Blog Unit, too flowery.
This Mercedes is not the MBU
This converted bus is not the MBU
This is not the MBU but it’s very cool.
This is not the MBU, but we’re getting closer.
This is not the MBU, but it’s a really good idea.
Ok enough is enough, here it is, finally the Mobile Blog Unit:
I’m just kidding. I bet you were like WTF?? Moving on,.. this is not the MBU.
Here’s an old Woody for you but it’s not the MBU.
Nope, extremely cool but not the MBU.
More wood but not the MBU.
Very cool, but not the MBU. Not this one. Too hippy to be the MBU.
Not this one.
This is not the MBU…dammit
This Caddy is not the MBU.
Had enough? Ok here’s the deal. There really is no Mobile Blog Unit. It has been a six month sham to get you to read this blog.
Ok I’m kidding again. There really is a Mobile Blog Unit. Here it is and I appreciate all of you playing along with me on this. It’s been fun.
As I look out my window it’s about 20 degrees outside and it’s snowing. In my mind it’s 78 degrees with a few small clouds in the sky and I’m rubbing aloe vera on yesterday’s sunburn.
Hey, help me out here. You know how I’ve been doing the “This is not the Mobile Blog Unit” thing for the last six months. I’ve officially exhausted my source of wacky RV pictures.
So for fun, if you have a few spare minutes see if you can find an RV picture that I haven’t used yet, make it a good one and e-mail it to firstname.lastname@example.org.
I want to do a blog entry of everyone’s RV choices. Then at the end of it I’ll show you the REAL Mobile Blog Unit. If you send me a RV picture I’ve already used I’ll let you know.
If you read this blog and you’ve never commented before, here’s your chance to shine. This is a creative group here don’t let me down. Hit me with your best RV picture.
If you’d like, you can name your RV picture.
I ready y’all, fresh haircut and a beard trim. The final walk through of the MBU is complete all systems are go. I feel like I’m on the verge of something really special.
Despite being smart and incredibly good looking, I’m not a wealthy man. It’s taken me all year to save for this spring training blogging extravaganza and it has been on my mind since my drive back from spring training in Tucson last season.
How often does a guy get ten days off with no wife, kids or responsibilities to go watch baseball. I’ve spent my whole life living vicariously through other people.
For ten days you can live vicariously through me. Unlike television and water I’m still free.
Come along for the ride in the MBU, you get the couch and don’t try and use the bathroom when were rolling :) …D
I haven’t written anything in a couple of days and it feels like an eternity.
Let me tell you the weather is beautiful and I’m working on a good tan.
A friend of mine Betsy has been working on www.rockpilerant.com. Right now It’s just a cover page that links back to this blog, but I’m thrilled that it’s finally up and accessible.
I would like a permanant page within that website that contains all of the “Rockies Fan Profiles”, maybe a page with videos and a baseball collection page which will get updated weekly as new items are acquired.
In one week about this time the MBU is mobile.
(This is not the MBU, the one we’re in doesn’t float dammit)
Promote the Colorado Rockies.
Loaded with Cirrus Radio, laptop computer, webcam, wireless internet card, Wii Rockband, plenty of food, and two of the happiest campers to ever grace those big *** captain’s chairs, we’ll roll south to the southern part of New Mexico, hang a right and set the cruise control until we see a sign that says:
Right now I’m filling it up with some of the many pictures I took last season. This blog is constantly getting more material so feel free to stop on by if you need a baseball fix.
You never know, if you found your way to a Rockies game last season you might see yourself in one of my pictures.
Ok, the last two were easy, it’s time to make you work a little. Are you ready for:
“Which Rockie Am I”
Here are your clues:
1. He was signed as an undrafted free agent.
2. As far as I can tell he’s currently a free agent.
3. He made his major league debut in August of some year.
4. He played for five major league teams in his career.
5. He doesn’t play outfield.
6. Appeared in three playoff games but never reached base.
Listen, do you hear that? That’s the sound of me officially turning things up a notch.
I was looking at some old video of last season and thought I might post a few of them.
You can see Dan and Emily in their seats.
The gangs all here, minus one. Now Spilly has a job.
It will be nice to chat with my friend Alice in front of the Rockpile gate as we wait to go inside. We always save her a place in line.
I’m ready for some baseball. Hunter and Mylee are ready.
Chris Iannetta’s ready.
Tulo and Atkins are ready.
Picture and video credit go to my camera, my incredible timing and my index finger.