Results tagged ‘ Rockies Spring Training ’

Back in the Game…Tulo’s the Same

3-6-12

st 13 scoreboard

When the plane landed in Phoenix we headed immediately to the car rental joint, picked up a snazzy Ford Focus, then drove straight to Talking Stick. We rolled up about 9:30 and the facility couldn’t have been prettier. The sun was shining with temperature in the mid 60’s. Being the first fan to ever attend a game here I have a special affiliation with Salt River Fields at Talking Stick even if there’s only a handful of fans that know of my accomplishment.

We meandered the backfields in search of anyone partaking in a little batting practice. It was eerily quiet on the Rockies side. ‘cept for a wee bit of minor league action going on so I hung out on the side lines and it paid off.  I managed to snag two foul balls in a 10 minute time frame. Back in the game!

The goal was to see Team USA warm-up and we learned that they wouldn’t be out till this afternoon. At that point we figured it was time to take a visit to the local In and Out Burger and then check into our room. On the way back to the car I spotted my third ball of the day.

My first Easter egg of the season!

rpr in and out 13

Food and hotel taken care of it was back to Salt River Fields where Mike and I ran into Eric B. After a quick hello I took off as I noticed Team USA was beginning to take BP on the D-backs side (bonus)!

There were probably 20 other ballhawks out in left field all salivating at the chance to snag a USA World Baseball. I hung out there for 45 minutes and had play on three balls. One I managed to snag as it bounced off of the gravel. I looked at it and unfortunately it was just a regular old MLB baseball.

That sucked!

Not long after that I witnessed the Rox Addict snag one on the fly. His was a plain old MLB ball too. I’ll give him big props as it was a sweet catch in the tip of his glove and he was surrounded by greedy ballhawks.

Tonight’s game was the Rockies vs Team USA. I had a seat in the front row along the Rockies side so I used the opportunity to snag a few autographs. I managed to get Todd Helton, Tyler Colvin, Dante Bichette,  Jordan Pacheco and Eric Young Jr.

autos st 13-1

I have a great picture of Tulo in the Snow I’d love autographed, but as is usually the case “The Deuce” took the low road and exited the field ignoring his fans.

deuce st 13

The redeye flight and no sleep was catching up with me so I took just a couple of pictures during the game and spent the last part of the game hang’n with Jersey Geoff, his buddy Mike, and the Rox Addict.

Rockies pitch st 13

Hererra st 13

Ey after st 13

USA team st13

Rockies made it interesting in the 9th after trailing the entire game and actually pulled out a win. Funny though, Rockies did Team USA no favors when they actually had to loan them a few pitchers.

Final Score rox vs usa st 13

The four of us ended up in the outfield with absolutely no competition for home run balls and wouldn’t you know it,  diddly squat came our way. You have no idea how funny it would have been had a home run been hit in our general direction. The scramble for that ball by the four of us would have been hilarious.

I’m “D” the Ranter and today was an excellent first day! My only goals for the first day were to bust out some shorts for the first time in 6 months and get a nice sunburn started.

Mission Accomplished!

Purple Ranter banner

Thirteen Games…Kick’n Ass n’ Tak’n Names

3-10-12

Ranter and Rox Addict’s 2012 Spring Training schedule.

Two Colorado Rockies Bloggers, one mission.

March 14th-D-Backs vs Rockies (Salt River Fields) Evening Game

March 15th-A’s vs Rangers (Surprise) Day Game

March 15th-Giants vs Mariners (Peoria) Night Game

March 16th-Indians vs Angels (Tempe Stadium) Day Game

March16th-Rockies vs Reds (Goodyear) Night Game

March 17th-Dodgers vs Rockies (Salt River Fields) Day Game

March 18th-Rangers vs Brewers (Maryvale) Day Game

March 19th-Reds vs White Sox (Glendale) Day Game

March 20th-Rangers vs Cubs (Hohokum) Day Game

March 20th-Rockies vs Padres (Peoria) Night Game

March 21st- Off Day

March 22nd-Giants vs Rockies (Salt River Fields) Night Game

March 23rd-Dodgers vs Brewers (Maryvale) Day Game

March 24th-Rockies vs Giants (Scottsdale) Day Game..Head home…

How’s that for a Spring Training trip?

 Thirteen games in eleven days. If all goes as planned the Addict and I should see every team and get to wander around almost every Stadium.

Planning on attending one of these games? Leave a comment or shoot me an email and we’ll try and meet up, shoot the shit and take a photo for the blog.

If you’re a Phoenix area local and you have any tips on any of these stadiums(parking, best spot for autographs, anything useful).

PLEASE…

 The Rox Addict and I will gladly return the favor when you’re in Colorado :)

I’m “D” the Ranter and I’m more than ready to hug a cactus.

This trip is gonna be epic…“D”

Snow Ain’t My Thing…I’m All About Spring

2/5/11

As I’m writing this it’s 20 degrees outside and there’s about two feet of the white stuff covering everything.

I’m not a huge fan of winter.

You ask “D why do you live in the mountains if you don’t care for winter?”

That’s easy, there’s no better place to live in the spring, summer and fall.

It’s Superbowl Sunday and I’m writing about baseball because I’m thinking about my upcoming road trip to the Phoenix area.

 

Spring Training, if you’re a baseball lover and you’ve never attended it’s on your bucket list.

If you’ve had a taste of spring training and you live in a cold weather state, it becomes a ritual.

Point and case…Me

My first Spring Training trip was the season after the Rockies World Series run and I did it because I needed more. My first blog entry on the Rant back in March of 2008 was about my first Spring Training trip. It’s called:

Out of the Storm…The Ranter is Born.

My blog entries were a lot simpler back then :)

Spring Training 2009

That quick three-day trip in 2008 was a tease and for Spring Training 2009 my buddy Andy(known as Andy from Spring Training) planned a ten-day trip in a 30 ft RV dubbed “The Mobile Blogging Unit”

rpr live bloggingn.JPG

Here’s the first blog entry from that trip:

Fun in the Sun as I watch game Game One.

First BP ball of the season.jpg

Next:

Early Morning Meet and Greet was Neat

TH autographed WS ball 2-26-09.jpg

Next:

Waiting for Game Four So I can Blog at you Some More

Spring Training 2009 016.JPG

This next blog entry was inspired by a brief encounter with Vinny Castilla. I’ve since forgiven Vinny and even named my VW bus after the guy.

Here’s the Skinny on Vinny

RPR big stick 2-28-09.jpg

Next:

Snagg’n Behind Enemy Lines for the First Time 

Andy from Spring Training

Andy 2-28-09.jpg

 Next:

TEP is Not the Place for Me

My TEP baseball 3-1-09.jpg

Finally

Saying Goodbye to “Hi” 

RPR at HiCorbett 3-2-09.jpg

 I could have stayed another couple of weeks but both of us had jobs that needed us and a guy can only play for so long. This trip kicked ass and now that I think back ten days was the perfect amount of time. 

2010 Spring training

Spring Training this year consisted of two games. I didn’t have the vacation time saved up to do a Tucson trip this season. Lucky for us the Rockies played two Spring Training games in Albuquerque at the Isotopes Stadium and the wife and I were able to attend those games.

I called the entry for Game One against the Mariners:

We Left Our Mark at Isotopes Park

Game Two was even better, I called that entry:

 Don’t Mind if I Do…I Think I’ll Take Two 

Isotopes Stadium 1.JPG

Alan Shuster from MyGameBalls.com wrote an article about the Brad Eldred and Jason Giambi homers I snagged from the batters eye at the end of the game at Isotopes park.

 Rockpile Ranter Grabs Two Home Run Balls

So even though Spring Training 2010 was only two games, I made it and it was a blast.

Spring Training 2011

From the moment I heard that  the Rockies and D-Backs were getting a new Spring Training facility I knew I had to be the first fan inside the joint on opening day. Opportunities like that are few and far between and I wanted to be able to tell folks for years to come that I opened that stadium.

 The family and I were in supposed to be in Arizona visiting my parents about the same time as the inaugural game at Salt River Fields at Talking Stick so pulling this off consisted of good timing and some serious back and forth driving between Yuma and Phoenix on my part.

Here’s the kids and I in the back fields of Salt River Fields at Talking Stick a few days before the inaugural game snagg’n baseballs.

Kids and I snagg'n.jpg

I called that first entry of that trip:

Yeah the Sun’s Fun…Bring on Game One

I called the second entry:

A Geezer and a Canadian Open the New Stadium 

don & i, 1st game salt river fields. 26feb2011.jpg

The final entry of the trip:

I Ended Up With One…But Damn It Was Fun

RPR cactus.jpg

Spring Training 2012 will be ten days and I’ll be hang’n with the Rox Addict who kinda sees things like I do.

There’s a lot of new faces within the Rockies organization and there’s no better way to gauge a new player than to see how he acts/interacts during Spring Training. It’s where new players meet old players and friendships begin to form.

 The plan is to visit to every stadium/facility in the Cactus League detailing all of it as we go. Who knows what kind of trouble we’ll get into down there?

:)

I’m “D” The Ranter and I love my mountains but I prefer the dugout to digg’n out… “D”

Pack’n my Glove and Sharing the Luv

2/18/11Baseball logo.JPG                                All is good in Ranter Land.

I’m back to work and in less than a week the kids, Krista and I will be boarding Frontier Airlines and flying (that’s right flying) to Arizona for a visit with the parents.

It just so happens we’ll be in Arizona the same time as the Rockies/Diamondbacks home opener in their new stadium. 

                                                     How cool is that?

This will be the fourth year in a row I’ve been fortunate enough to attend at least two Rockies spring training games and blog about them.

I’d like to thank Denis from Phoenix for sending me an email and letting me know that parking is a bit scarce at Salt River Fields and that I should arrive early. 

 No worries, Robert and I will all be there early standing in line to open the new stadium. I’m hearing Bud Selig may be in attendance and that’s an autograph I’d like to obtain.

Rockies in Tulsa.jpgThe Rockies will be playing their final Spring Training game on March 30th in Tulsa, OK at ONEOK Field which is home to the Tulsa Drillers AA Rockies farm team.

Tulsa Drillers logo.jpg The Drillers have officially started an MLBlog called “Driller Bitsand here’s a link to the Drillers FACEBOOK page: Tulsa Drillers Baseball.

                                          This is Hornsby the Drillers mascot.

Drillers Mascot.jpgThe new Tulsa Drillers blog is gonna be a good read. I’ve been told it will have player interviews, daily statistical up-keep and various other things that will be of interest to Rockies fans.

                              Give the Drillers your support and check out their blog.

                 I’m “D” The Rockpile Ranter, packing my glove and sharing some luv.
ranter hat1

Baseball is Life, are you a Lifer?

3/20/10

                   Here are the next batch of pictures Robert sent me from Tucson.

the pitchers work out.jpg                                         Jorge De La Rosa and Rich Dauer.

de la rosa warms up before the game.jpg

                                               Jorge throws a strike.

de la rosa throws a strike.jpg
                                                                Chris Iannettachris do'en his job.jpg

                                                          Iannetta at bat.

chris gets a hit.jpg

                 Clap Clap.. Clap Clap Clap…Clap Clap Clap Clap,..TULOtulo hustle.jpg

                                                        Jay Payton

jay payton still playen after all these years.jpg
                                Robert said Jorge’s foul ball sailed over his head.

jorge sends it right over my head.jpg
                                                       Note the temperature.just in case your wondering why i came, check the temp.jpg

            Just for the contrast check out the snow we received in Nederland yesterday.
Snow 3-19-10.JPG                                         I’m officially done with this winter.

 I’ve had enough cold, I’ve had enough snow, I’ve just had enough. Jack Frost can kiss my a-ss and take a long walk off a short plank.

I can’t tell you how much it sucks to have sweet dreams of baseball then waking up at 2:15 AM and driving the icy snowy mountain roads an hour to work.

Don’t get me wrong, I love where I live. I’m just extremely ready for some sunshine.

Ok, I’m gonna go a little deep here…. 

For some folks baseball is a nice way to spend an afternoon in the sunshine. Those people are easy to spot as they are the ones with seats behind home plate and spend the entire game texting their friends. No worries somebody has to buy the expensive seats right?

For others they follow baseball so they have something to talk about around the water cooler. That’s ok too, I like good baseball talk.

For some baseball is their life. For 6+ months a year most of the spring and summer is spent preparing for and attending games. Their baseball stadium becomes their second home. When their team is out of town their extra time is spent making signs, watching the games, checking stats, hitting the team forums, you know trying to stay in the loop.

These people are baseball lifers. These fans are what holds baseball together and enables the sport to continue to exist through all it’s ups, downs and player controversies.

           Lifers are the reason baseball WILL flourish in the post-steroids era.

Baseball owners take note: Take care of your lifers. Throw them a bone whenever you can. You should consider lifers as “Messengers of the future of Baseball”.

Give them something good to say and they will spread the word. Case and point is my pops. Until last year he and my mom had never been to a professional baseball game. This year they attended a Rockies spring training game. Dad Hi Corbett1.jpg

So that makes me think that maybe my passion for baseball rubbed off on them and that’s why they went to the game…You see, spreading the WORD.

Who knows, maybe I’m wrong and they were bored and wanted to kill a nice afternoon?

On a funny note my dad mentioned that it was autograph day and he didn’t understand why nobody asked for his autograph?Mom Hi Corbett.jpg

Coors field in the spring and summer definately feels like a second home to me. I can tell you that it bothers (just a little) when I’m not the first one inside the stadium.   

I love that feeling of being the first one to enter the Pavilion. Completly empty ‘cept for one solitary Usher.

The first few minutes of an empty stadium are surreal. It’s exciting working my way over to my favorite spot in the bleachers. Knowing that any ball hit into the pavilion in the next few minutes will most likely end up in my glove, and then in some lucky kids hand. 

When you are the first one into a stadium there is that moment when you see the players and they look over at you.  

Thats when you smile and think to yourself ” Yep they know me and they know I’m here to support them” That’s a cool feeling. Acceptance and appreciation from your team all wrapped into one short moment.

Then again it could all be in my head….Either way it feels real so I’ll roll with it.

I’ll tell you a secret. There’s a reason I prefer my sports live. I don’t watch a lot of TV and I really have trouble watching baseball on TV. At times it’s way to boring and I feel like I’m wasting the day watching TV. 

I prefer baseball on the radio when the Rockies are out of town or if I’m not at a game. I will however go online and watch the hi-light clips if I hear a play on the radio that sounded cool.

 I still for the life of me can’t figure why the Rockpile Rant continues to hold onto a top ten spot. I mean look who holds the top spots. You’ve got an accomplished professional writer in Jane who writes “Confessions of a She-Fan” and has a couple of books. Red State Blue State has two writers and both are top-notch and feed off of each other. 

Then there’s my fellow Ranter Julia. She’s a baseball lifer and she works MLBlogs like pro. She’s witty, funny, creative and the Red Sox biggest fan bar none.   

In case you didn’t know it (I’m a fiddle player too, kidd’n), “The Happy Youngster” is my favorite MLBlogger. I’ll tell you why….As passionate as I am about blogg’n, snagg’n and tagg’n, Happy is me times two with a list of accomplishments to back it up. He’s a family man, a baseball lifer and has rised above a bunch of bull-sheet that happened to him last year and is a better person for it. 

I enjoy reading Happy’s take on things as they are quite often similar to mine and he always “Tells it like it is”. I respect the hell out of that.

I can tell you which MLBlog will slide into the top ten if we ever have another “Latest Leaders List”. That would be another lifer known as the Rays Renegade. His blog is top notch and is filled with baseball history and written by guy who knows this sport inside and out. He’s an avid reader of other blogs and always has a bit of trivia or a kind comment to leave when he visits someone’s blog. 

Guess what I’m saying is it is an honor to blog on this platform with such talent and fellow lifers. Each of us brings a different take on baseball to the masses and it’s fun to see who is willing to push the limits on what an MLBlogger can do.

                                      Write On baseball freaks…Spread the Word         

                                                    D..The Rockpile Ranter

                                                                 Thumbnail image for Thumbnail image for Thumbnail image for Thumbnail image for Thumbnail image for Thumbnail image for Thumbnail image for Thumbnail image for Thumbnail image for Thumbnail image for Thumbnail image for Thumbnail image for Green Floppy Ha

 

I need a rest after Rockies Fest

1/23/10
RF sign.JPG

                                                    Rockies Fest 2010.

This would be the second time this special Rockies season ticket holder event has taken place and the second time we’ve been there. The weather was expected to be in the mid-40′s today and for January in Colorado I’ll take that.

                                            Below are two things that don’t mix.

Coors Field with Snow.JPGLet me tell you though I did have to fight of the urge to run out there lay my a-ss on the field and start pumping out snow angels :)

 Mylee didn’t make Rockies Fest today because she’s been sick for almost a week.  

Let me tell you my little girl was extremely sad she couldn’t go so we promised to get her Rockies mini-bat signed for her. We did just that thanks to Huston Street. I chatted with a lot of people yesterday and everyone agreed Street has one of the nicest autographs in baseball today. 
Mylees Huston Street Bat.jpg Hunter and I had a little time to kill before our the “Pitcher and Catcher interviews” so we toured the Press Box.Press box sign RF2010.JPG

                                    While inside we each took our photo ops.

Hunter in the Rockies Press Box.JPG Me in that chair, high above with the killer view of the field. I tell ya it felt like I was home.
RPR in the Press Box.JPG I must have been sitting in “The Cowboy’s” chair because it was broke in real good.

As we killed more time and wandered the Club levels of Coors Field we walked up on a huge bin of baseballs.
Bat Giveaway.JPGI was half expecting Zack Hample to pop out of them so when he didn’t I asked someone what this was.

I was informed that object was to guess the number of balls in the cage and it you could only enter if you were 15 or younger.

                    Lets just say the prizes were a baseball collector’s dream. 
Todd Helton Bat drawing.JPG I took a few moments and filled out entries for Hunter and Mylee as did every parent with kids I’m sure. 

Troy Tulowitzki Bat Giveaway.JPGWhile we were standing there fixated on the autographed bats I bumped into Joy aka LUVMYROX who was there with her family. I believe they also were killing time waiting for their Outfielder interviews to begin.

A few minutes and a hundred feet later I ran into Marianne aka R-Luv who was also exploring the festivities with her family.

Funny thing and I hope I get this all correct. Joy and Marianne have known each other for years through the Rockies forums. During Rockies games they comment back and forth with each other on the forum but up until today had never physically met.

When I met up with Dan today he mentioned that the two of them finally met each other here at the Rockies Fest.

Ladies I’m sorry I missed that photo opportunity. Congratulations how appropriate that you met at Rockies Fest as you both are HUGE fans….Too Cool.

 It was time for us to head up to the Pitcher/Catcher interviews. This took place up in Club level. The MC’s hosting this Q N A were Alana Rizzo (my favorite FSN employee), and that other guy Drew Goodman.

Alana Rizzo RF 2010.JPG For some reason my hands started to shake every time I tried to take a picture of Alana. The above picture was the clearest of the bunch.

Here’s a shot of most of your Rockies pitchers and catchers for the upcoming 2010 Season.

 
RF Pitchers 2010.jpg

     Let me break it down a little better. Below is Chris Iannetta and Matt Daley.
Chris Iannetta Rockies Fest 2010.JPG                      Taylor Buchholz, Aaron Cook, Jeff Francis and Huston Street
Francis, Buchholz, Cook and Street.jpg                            Randy Flores, Greg Smith and Miguel Olivo
Flores, Daley.jpg                          Last but not least Jason Hammel and Matt Belisle
Hammel and Belisle.jpg

Most of the questions they asked were a bit regular side. However,I did manage to get video of Jeff Francis when he was asked about his arm and his return.

                                                    Here’s the video:

                   So I guess he’s back. I wish him the best. We need the Canadian.

After the interview session it was autograph time. Our first session was Huston Street and first base coach Glenallen Hill.

Street and Glenallen Hill.jpgAs I approached Huston Street I said “Hi I’m Don I write the Rockpile Rant” and I asked him if he was going to continue his MLBlog. Street replied “Yeah, I’d like to”.

You heard it here first. 

Then I moved onto Glenallen Hill. As he was signing my mini-bat Hill asked me “What do you do with all those autographs?” I started laughing and said” Mr. Hill you asked me the same exact question a year ago at spring training.”

 Hill looked at me and said “You know I don’t ask everyone that question”.

I’m not sure what he meant by that but he was smiling when he said it so I’ll take it as a positive.

Two down and we had time to burn again. As we walked by the Jeff Francis/Rich Dauer autograph session we noticed the line was short. I asked if we could just go through as it was the tail end of this session and the extremely cool Usher let us. 

That totally made my day because I just happend to have with me my 2007 Sports Illustrated magazine with Jeff Francis on the cover. Hunter went into the room first and right away Jeff asked him what his name was.

                          Then Jeff wrote “For Hunter” on the picture and autographed it.
                                         Very classy Jeff….Thank you.
Jeff Francis pic for Hunter.jpgI handed Jeff my magazine and he looked left at the Usher standing beside him and said “See told you, here’s the first one”. Again I was like WTF? But I think Jeff was making note that every time he autographs for fans someone hands him one of those Sports Illustrated issues.

              Least I hope he wasn’t making fun of me..We’re both from Canada?

Rich Dauer signed a picture for Hunter and a mini-bat for me and then we were outta there.

We headed downstairs and while wandering around an Usher asked if we would like Eric Young Jr’s autograph. Without hesitation I said “Yes Sir” and within a few minutes we were standing in front of EY Jr.

                                     Here he is signing Hunters baseball.
 
Eric Young Jr signing Hunters ball.jpg

                                           EY Jr signing my mini-bat.
Eric Young Jr signing RPR bat.jpg        EY Jr really seemed like he was having a good time. Keep’n it real, I like that.

When we walked out of there directly across from us was the long line for Don Baylor and Randy Flores. I felt a big smile growing because I’ve never managed to get Don Baylor’s autograph before. It’s not that he wouldn’t sign, just really bad timing on my part. 

Today Don Baylor signed an Inaugural Year Rockies Magazine with his picture on it for me. 

When I handed him the magazine I said “Mr. Baylor you haven’t changed a bit”, He looked up at me and said smiling “Yeah right”. Then he autographed it for me. 

                          Here’s Don Baylor autographing Hunter’s baseball.Don Baylor signing Hunters ball.jpg

                               Here’s Randy Flores autographing Hunter’s baseball.Flores signing Hunters ball.jpg

Hunter and I hurried upstairs so we could catch the tail end of Matt Belisle’s autograph session..

IMG_0119.JPG These plates may not be fine china but I’m sure their worth more than the plates I eat off of.  
Game used All Star home plate.jpg 
Rockies Postseason home plate 2007.jpg 
Mile High Stadium Coors Field Helicopter Home plate.jpg 
Last Game of 2000 home plate.jpg These beauties are a couple of the bat-shovels used to break ground on the Rockies/D-Backs new Spring Training Facility east of Scottsdale last year.
Ground Breaking shovel.jpgI just wanted to show how the MLB labels game used items. Specifically ones from big games.

                Notice how they misspelled Tulowitzki’s last name on the first helmet. 
Tulo game used helmet.jpg
Tulo game used helmet 2.jpg                              You can see me Tulo and Coors Field in this picture. 
Tulo and RPR.jpg
        This is a special helmet made just for Charlie Hayes who suffered a broken jaw. This is the unsigned original artwork used to make the Coors Field Inaugural year opening day ticket. 
Rockies Opening Day 1993 ticket and original artwork.jpg                           The World Famous Colorado Rockies Humidor.

IMG_0082.JPG                                    
          Todd Helton’s locker.

IMG_0089.JPG                                                Indoor batting cages.

battingcages.jpg                                     Hunter with a lean mean Don Baylor. Hunter and Don Baylor.jpg

     My Inaugural year Rockies magazine with Don Baylor’s fresh autograph on it. 
Don Baylor Magazine Cover.jpgMy 2007 Sports Illustrated with Jeff Francis on the cover with a fresh Jeff Francis autograph on it.  
Jeff Francis Mag Cover.jpgMy mini-bats In order…Glenallen Hill, Eric Young Jr, Huston Street, Rich Dauer, Randy Flores, and Clint Barmes.   
Mini Bats RF 2010.jpg                         Here’s all of it minus the hampster and Hunter’s stuff.

rockies fest.jpg                Here’s a shot of Ryan Spilborghs on his way to his next session.
 

Spilly walking around.jpg          Just as Hunter and I were leaving Club level heading home we ran into Robert.Robert Harmon RF 2010.jpg                                           
         Best hat of the day.Best hat.jpg

                                   Hunter making his mark just like his pops.

Hunter at Rockies Fest 2010.jpg  The Rockpile Ranter blessing Coors Field for the upcoming season.(I can legally do that). 
 

RPR at Rockies Fest.jpg

It was great to see all of you again. Dan, thank you once again for this special opportunity.

This is the year folks. The chemistry between this group of fellas feels right. We’ve had a taste of the post-season twice in recent years and we can’t go backwards right?

It starts with believing. I believe, Hunter believes, everybody I ran into at Rockies Fest believes.

               I’m D The Rockpile Ranter and I believe I’m finished with this entry.Thumbnail image for Thumbnail image for Thumbnail image for Thumbnail image for Thumbnail image for Thumbnail image for Thumbnail image for Thumbnail image for Thumbnail image for Thumbnail image for Thumbnail image for Thumbnail image for Green Floppy Ha 

 

Living the dream as I blog for my team

2/12/09


Hunters first Rockies game1.jpgYou can tell it’s getting close, everyone is eager to talk baseball and share their autograph and collection stories. The idea in my last blog entry was “You pick the topic” and I’ll write about it. Most of you chose to ask questions of me. I guess I didn’t take that into consideration.

(<—-Hunter and his Grandpa at his first Rockies game in 1999).

You could have picked any topic besides me, but I’ll roll with this. I’ll answer them all in time. I still have ten days before I’m blogging at the high speed of 65 MPH

                                  

This one is from Jere80 (he responded first):

 “I’m always interested in how people become fans of teams that didn’t exist when they were young, and therefore what team they grew up rooting for before their current team existed. So maybe you could tell us that about yourself?

Jere, my story is different from most. I was a Yankee fan until my parents moved us up to Canada at age 11 (1978). There was really no organized baseball in my High School and I would have to say most of our Schools budget was spent on indoor sports (mostly hockey), because of the sub-zero (at times) temperatures.

So my exposure to baseball of any sort was severely limited. Remember there was no internet back in the late 70′s early 80′s.

Edmonton_Eskimos logo.jpg
Oilers logo.gifSo I grew up with no affiliation to any baseball team.

As a kid I followed the Edmonton Eskimos in the CFL, and it was cool living in the same Province as Wayne Gretzky back when he was an Edmonton Oiler and in his prime.

I don’t really follow hockey anymore but in my opinion it’s still the best sport to see live .

army cook apron.jpgWhen I finished my Military service I decided to stay in Colorado. It was a that point I knew I was going to be a Bronco and later on down the road, a Rockies fan.

balanced rock11.jpg(<—-Balanced Rock inside the Garden of the Gods where Krista and I were married).

I fell in love with Colorado and it would be hard for me to support a team that I couldn’t see play at least every now and then.

Plus, what a nickname..”The Blake Street Bombers” as a former military guy I love that name. 

The Broncos, Rockies and later the Nuggets worked out perfect for me at the time, and all within an hours drive. 

So as you can see I became a Rockies fan well into my adulthood. Going to a Rockies game to me is like reliving a part of my childhood that I missed due to geographical location. I’m a kid again from the second I walk through those gates. I don’t get that from anything else in the world. 

The Rockpile Ranter was born because of the lack of respect the Rockies received during their amazing World Series run. I attended my first game as the Rockpile Ranter March of last year in Tucson. I’ve been on a Rant ever since…

JERE-I’ve come up with another segment of the Rant that I’m going to call:

                                              WHICH ROCKIE AM I ?

I’ll give you some interesting facts about a player (should you choose to accept this challenge), and you will have to figure out who it is.

As always, whoever wins send me your picture and I’ll make you famous…D

MB 11.jpgThis Rockie is well over six feet tall.

 He played basketball in High School.

<—-This guy has something to do with the naming of his this player’s High School.

 He’s a switch hitter….This one’s easy..Good Luck ! 
 

                                   JERE, thanks for “Deciding the Ride” today. 

In celebration of pitchers and catchers officially getting back to work, I’ve included in this entry:

              My first blog entry ever. It’s from Rockies spring training last year.

Just looking at it makes me think of all that has happened in the last year. WOW…Thanks for being a part of it…D

Matt Holliday almost tags me with a ball

March 25, 2008 

I was shooting a video at Spring Training of Matt Holliday when he hit the ball foul off of the first base line and I had no idea that it was coming right at me.

 It just missed me.

I didn’t even get the baseball. I hope my snagging improves.

MVI_0024.AVI

Helton

 

 

Here’s a picture of Todd Helton with Tulo in the background.

Ok the picture sucks but it shows you how close I was. The top of the Rockies dugout was just below this fence.

 

 

 

IMG_0006.JPG

 

 

 

See what I was saying about the fence.

Gorgeous day, it was 85 and the first warm weather I had seen in months.

 

 

 

 

Man I dig Tucson..I can’t wait to go back next year. I’ll be better prepared. Here was my video for my wife as I was driving home from Tucson.

It’s amazing what a guy with a love of baseball and a need to vent can do in just one year. Just you wait, the best is yet to come.                                                  

                                           Go Rockies…I’m almost there…D

 

You “Decide on the Ride”…Where are we going?

2/11/09

RPR one one.jpgI’m a guy who likes to do things first, a blogging pioneer you might say. So I have what I believe is a “different” idea and if it works I’m going to roll with it every now and then. 

One of the things I like about blogging is it’s not so much about the story. It’s all about the presentation.

 I’d like to prove my point.

suggeston cartoons11.jpg

 

 

 

 

I’m going to take suggestions on what my next blog entry should be about. It’ll be fun and it’s good practice for me.

I’m going to call it “Decide the Ride”.

I have no idea what some of you might suggest and I think it’s good to venture beyond what you become routinely comfortable with. 

                           So hit me with your best idea for a topic or story.

 It doesn’t have to be about me, it can be about anything (except steroids). For the first one of these I get to decide which one of the suggested topics I blog about. I might be able to do several in one entry.

              Your choice can be serious or crazy or both. Let’s see what you’ve got.

                                    I’ll be sure and tell you how it really is…D
Thumbnail image for Thumbnail image for Thumbnail image for Thumbnail image for Thumbnail image for Thumbnail image for Thumbnail image for Thumbnail image for Thumbnail image for Thumbnail image for Thumbnail image for Thumbnail image for Green Floppy Ha   

Baseball’s shame, so who do we blame?

2/9/09

tatoo1.JPGFarewell to the Prince of New York.

I was reading his blog and apparently he’s upset because he feels he writes an intelligent blog and for some reason his blog stopped getting front page love.

So he’s switched to his own blogging platform. He had been a blogger here at MLBLogs.com for the last couple of years.

The man writes a decent blog, way to many NY details for me but still an interesting read. 

It’s obvious that he pissed someone off. I should know, I’ve been known to tap dance on the line.  I’ve come to the conclusion that I don’t want any front page coverage. I see the same blogs getting mentioned all the time and I’m fine with that, they’re good blogs.

Top Ten.jpgHere’s the deal, the Rockpile Rant will remain in the top ten blogs despite no extra attention and I’m ok with that.

When it’s my turn for the number one spot I’ll have a special dedication to everyone who helped me along the way.

I just hope I haven’t P’d off too many people in the right positions. (You know I love you all).

 I’m hoping for a little publicity when the MBU is in down in Tucson. All I can do is hope for the best and try to be nice.

 This is my year and whether I get help/exposure or not, doesn’t matter.

I’m in Tucson for the fan that can’t make it down there. You like my point of view because I make the game seem real. I appreciate that my readers get that from me.

If you don’t get that from me, why are you here wasting your time? Go away.

Pelt.jpgDid your hear that ESPN suspended Scott Van Pelt for verbally attacking Bud Selig on the radio. He called Selig a pimp..lol.

Think about what a pimp does and then think about what Bud’s job is. I’m just saying…

That gleaming dome Van Pelt has makes a good point.

 17.5 million a year for the Commissioner, yep that’s outrageously insane. If you asked me what I would have guessed his salary was I would have guessed a couple of million plus travel expenses and all the balls he can play with. 

Selig deaf 1.jpgFor that kind of money I want Bud’s real signature on every ball used in professional baseball. He’s getting over on us with that pre-printed autograph crap they use now.

 I take that back, I don’t want Selig anywhere near my balls :) 

Selig 5.jpg17.5 million is almost $50,000 a day. He makes more in one day than I make in a year. Granted that not just anybody can graduate to Selig’s position but come on.

 A fitting end to Selig’s reign would be him getting laid off (no severance) and replaced with someone half his age at 1/10 his current salary.

 It happens all the time in America and it’s always a sad story.


 
bud picking.jpgNow if that actually transpired, I wouldn’t feel sorry for Bud at all…Sorry dude, but your not worth 17.5 million don’t kid yourself.

I think your getting over on all of baseball. Your salary is a flagrant disgrace to baseball fans and ticket purchasers everywhere.

The position of “Commissioner of Baseball”  needs a salary cap instituted, immediately.  

$50,000 a day, weekends too…get the F*ck out of here. For some reason knowing Selig makes that much money makes me feel insignificant and poor.

I suffered through A-Rods admission of guilt today and I’ve made a decision. I’ll always be a baseball guy, but statistics from 1990-2005 mean nothing to me anymore. I’m sorry for all the non-juicers who get no credit but hey…you guys knew and you didn’t say sheet.

It has to be that way, I have no idea what’s real and what isn’t during that particular era, so I’ve chosen to forget those 15 years worth of statistics.

 A decade and a half of lying, cheating and degradation of our beautiful sport.

Selig funny.jpgCycling as a sport has no trouble stripping it’s athletes of their title’s. Maybe baseball should consider that bold move. That would definately send a message. 

That’s not going to happen, stuff like that scares the sheet out of Selig. Lets have a clean fresh start to this season with no more steroid shockers.

The top dog has fallen, does anybody even care who falls next?  

    

            My next blog entry will be about “Baseball in 2050″ ..Check back for it…D 
Thumbnail image for Thumbnail image for Thumbnail image for Thumbnail image for Thumbnail image for Thumbnail image for Thumbnail image for Thumbnail image for Thumbnail image for Thumbnail image for Thumbnail image for Thumbnail image for Green Floppy Ha

The Rockpile Rant, a long story in a short world

1/17/09

Corporal DRCFT Drum 1988-1.jpg

CPL Chilcote, US Army B CO, 10 S & T BN Drum, NY.    

Thought you might enjoy a shot of the Rockpile Ranter before he ranted professionally.

May 1988 (and 35 pounds skinnier), the first warm day in a while and it was my day off.

Just hanging around the barracks trying to get a tan.

obstacle course.jpg
          In front my Dining Facility (1986) at Camp Stanton, Korea    2/61 Air Defense Artillary
camp stanton korea.jpg
 

Thumbnail image for Army budies and first car.jpg

 

 

This is my first car (a 1986 Nissan Pulsar NX), and a few Army buddies and I at an outdoor concert somewhere near Ithaca, NY 1987.

 If anyone in this picture recognizes themselves, you better contact me.

 

 

 Below is a list of the nine non-roster players (so far) that the Rockies have invited to attend Spring Training camp.

PITCHERS (3)
RHP Matt Belisle
LHP Cedrick Bowers
LHP Glendon Rusch

INFIELDERS (2)
Luis Gonzalez
Jonathan Herrera (S)

OUTFIELDERS (2)
Dan Ortmeier
Scott Podsednik (L)

CATCHERS (2)
Edwin Bellorin
Paul Phillips

JHerrera1.jpg

 More names listed above have been a Rockie, than have not been (5-4).

I’ll tell all of them you said hi :) in a month.

 The only autograph I possess of the above mentioned players is Glendon Rusch’s.

 I ran into Jonathan Herrera during spring training last year, but Franklin Morales had just signed the last baseball I had with me so I couldn’t get Herrera’s autograph.

 1 Ball = 1 Autograph

teamsignedball.jpg

 

 I’m not really into team signed baseballs. I think it takes away from uniqueness and individuality of the signature.

Others collectors really like baseballs with multiple signatures.

You know what they say, different strokes for different folks.

Thumbnail image for ball 1.JPG

 Now on a football since they cost a bit more I’m ok with multiple signatures.

 Plus it’s a bigger area to sign so the signatures are spread out more than on a baseball.

minibat swirl.jpg

 When I’m in Tucson, I’m going to experiment with several different media’s for autographs.I have a few mini-bats and a few mini-helmets that I would like to get autographed.   

 I like that you can use a sharpie on them and from what I’ve been told and researched, they seem to hold up well over time. Light seems to be the killer of autograpys. You either have to keep them out of light entirely or store them in cases that filter UV light.

Thumbnail image for Barmes Ball

 One thing I’ve learned about storing autographs is only use Rawlings Official Major League Baseballs.

Before I drove down to Tucson for spring training last season I had purchased several baseballs with  Rockies logos on them. 

Barmes Ball 2.jpg

These baseballs were not made with real leather.  The  ball on left was signed by Clint Barmes on April 6, 2008. The ball on the right is the same ball not quite a year later. This baseball has been in a footlocker and not exposed to light since I returned home with it.

In another year, it should be a clean baseball again.

I haven’t had this issue with any of the autographs that I have on a Rawlings Official Major League Baseballs.

I noticed a comment on my last two entries from fellow MLBlogger Ray’s Renegade. Every time I read one of his comments (or his blog), I start to have baseball withdrawals. His passion for this sport radiates in his choice of words.

 The dude hypes me up about baseball and I’m already hyped up about it. That’s a good thing. It’s exactly a week now until Rockies Fest. I’m curious if I’ll run into any Rant readers there.

If you read this blog and you see me there, come over and say hi. Let me give you a card :) Remember, you know what I look like, most likely I wouldn’t know you if you were standing next to me. 

I often think about who reads this blog. I get a sizeable amount of page hits from readers who are overseas. The picture below is a map of page hits to the Rockpile Rant over the last 17 hours or so.

 Usually there are a few more overseas hits but I haven’t added any new “rantings” in a couple days. 
RPR visitor map1.jpg    I’ve never had a page hit from anyone in Greenland or Antarctica. I don’t understand why, what the hell else do they have to do up/down there right? Oh well, one can always hope. 

Thumbnail image for Kiss my xxx.jpgSeriously though, I wonder what they think when they read about some of the crazy sheet I get to do.

Do they think “Who is this crazy white boy and what the f*ck is wrong with him”. Or do they read my entries hang on my every word while living vicariously through my keyboard strokes?

Or did they just stumble across my blog through a funny picture I may have posted or some sort of search engine wrong turn? 

All’s good, one page hit counts the same as another.

 The part of this I find fascinating is that each individual page hit has a story, whether it be a long story or a short one. I’m honored to have been part of your/their page hit experience.

Consider the Rockpile Rant a long story in a short world with just the right bit of attitude. I always try and leave ‘em smiling as I shoot for a happy ending.
                                   

                                         Peace Y’all, Did you miss me?…D

Thumbnail image for Thumbnail image for Thumbnail image for Thumbnail image for Thumbnail image for Thumbnail image for Thumbnail image for Thumbnail image for Thumbnail image for Thumbnail image for Thumbnail image for Green Floppy Hat.JPG  

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 124 other followers