Results tagged ‘ Rockies ’
Dodgers vs Rockies…Salt River Fields
“D” in the Desert
This day started out exactly the way I like it. We showed up early and were greeted with two Diamondback batting practices.
As I said there were two BP’s today and during the second one it was just Mike, Dan and I snagg’n. It was game on and I snagged eight baseballs.
I live for days like that.
Behind where we were snagg’n baseballs was a six foot fence lined with barbed wire. Several of the BP homers hit bounced on the road and landed on the other side of the fence. I looked but couldn’t see a way to get over the fence and snag those baseballs so I forgot about them.
Next thing I know I see Mike walking up to me with a handful of baseballs. Mike found a weak spot in the fence and was able to get through it and snag those stranded baseballs. He also found a couple of balls that were missed hidden in the bushes.
For that bit of top-notch snagging I think Mike deserves an award.
I’m awarding Mike the first annual:
“Robert Harmon Award for Creative Ballhawking”
To quote Robert “Baseballs do grow on trees”. Mike proved that.
The Rockies decided to take their BP in the cages…it figures.
Here’s “The Deuce”, caged and protected from his adoring fans.
Chris Nelson was kind enough to sign a baseball for me.
Here are some inside the stadium pictures pre-game.
I headed over to the Dodgers side to try to get Mark Ellis to sign the live game ball he tossed me last season but I never saw Mark on the field pre-game. As the Usher was scooting us away after the National Anthem Andre Ethier walked up to the edge of the dugout and started signing for folks.
I waited and Andre signed my baseball last.
He signed it on the sweet spot for me, I didn’t even have to ask.
When I see Captain Earthman I know all is as it should be as far as baseball is concerned.
The crew out on the berm. Check out Mikes hat.
Former Rockie Mark Ellis.
In the sixth inning Wilin Rosario hit foul ball along the first base line. The new owner of that baseball was none other than my partner in crime down here in Phoenix…Mike the Rox Addict.
Mike gave away his first ever game ball to Mary the Usher because it was her birthday.
Here’s Mike pictured with Mary on TV…Classy move Mike
As much as we wanted a win to cap off one hell of a day it wasn’t happening.
Padres get the win over the Rockies 9-6.
I’m “D” The Ranter, feel’n fine but running a bit behind.
Next blog entry…Rangers vs Brewers Maryvale Baseball Park.
Rockies vs Reds… Goodyear Stadium
I’m not sure what this mascot is and after a very small amount of thought I decided I didn’t want to know.
I looked but I didn’t see a “Practice” stamped on the outside of it anywhere on it so as far as flat baseballs go it must be the real deal.
Spring training for me has always been a test.
Not a test of my intelligence(thank god), more a test of my patience. Each time I’m down here I try to learn a little more about each facility.This trip has been no different.
Show up a half hour late and you miss batting practice. Think batting practice is going to be one place and you find out it’s at another.
It’s fun yet frustrating at the same time.
Mike and I have yet to experience the joys of a batting practice taking place inside of a stadium. It’s more common to stumble across batting practice occurring discretely out in back of the stadium. That’s exactly what happened today. We were lucky and managed to stumble across some Reds BP taking place in one of the back fields.
Baseballs here are hard to catch on the fly because you only see the ball just as it’s cresting the fence. Despite that annoyance I snagged two baseballs. One on the fly and one was scooped as it was rolling.
In attendance for BP today were Dan, Mike, Amy and Emily.
Everyone snagged at least one baseball. Good job all!!
My first official “Hoser” pic of the season.
Here’s some Rockies pics pre-game.
One of my favorite players Chris Nelson.
While Mike and I were walking the concourse Mike was sure he spotted former Colorado Governor Bill Owens talking to another guy about twenty feet away from us. Upon closer inspection Mike was correct. We wanted to introduce ourselves but neither of us had the testicular fortitude.
So Mike had a great idea.
His idea was to get Amy to break the ice with the Governor. She’s young and not scared of going up to people cold turkey. Amy pulled it off, we met Governor Owens, chatted a bit, shook his hand, and then the Governor signed their ticket stubs and my program and ticket.
The Governor mentioned he had read my blog and before our brief encounter was over in true Ranter style I slipped him my Ranter card. Great guy Governor Owens, friendly and easy to talk to, and loves baseball.
Thank you Sir!!
Here’s the ticket and program the Governor signed for me.
Now some game pictures.
Jon at bat.
Cargo out at second.
I didn’t take as many pictures as usual. That’s because I was lingering in the outfield hoping to catch a home run ball. That’s difficult to do with a camera in your face.
Rockies tried hard in the 9th inning scoring three runs but it was too little too late. Reds take this one with a final score of 4-3.
After the game there was a small fireworks show. Nothing special but kinda cool.
I’m “D” The Ranter and every day is an adventure down here at Spring Training.
Wonder who I’ll meet next…”D”
This day started out way too early. Although ballons crossing the road in front of you on your drive to the ballpark is pretty damn cool.
I love the desert.
Last night I managed to get a solid 7 hours sleep and I needed it becasue I hadn’t slept at all from the previous days road trip.
Mike and I had two games on the agenda today.
The first one was the A’s vs Rangers at Surprise Stadium.
This is a cool little stadium with a really neat backfield area set up just for fans. We saw players walking all over and they were stopping and taking time to chat with the fans.
For me this is enemy territory but it was cool seeing how the other side rolls. The Rockies could take a few notes from these fellas on how to interact with fans who drive a long way to see them.
We thought we arrived early but it turns out we had already missed batting practice.
We walked the back fields a bit then headed inside to see what this place was like.
No ballpark is complete without it’s merry-go-round.
Today was much hotter than this mountain boy is used to and by the start of the game I was close to cooked. That’s not exactly how you want to start a two game day.
While cruising the outfield area I stumbled across the Budweiser Home Run Party deck.
In reality it wasn’t much of a party and no home runs were hit inside, but for a small fee I upgraded my ticked and I enjoyed the rest of the game shaded with all I could eat
That worked out perfectly beacause at this point my well cooked ass was hot and hungry.
Here’s a few game pics. You might remember this guy Rockies fans.
Here’s Seth Smith at bat with Torealba catching.
A’s win this game 11-7.
As soon as this game ended we quickly headed out to the Peoria Sports Complex, home of the Mariners and the Padres.
We met up with Rantic Amy to watch the Mariners vs the Giants.
As soon as we entered we headed over to the Giants dugout for position so we could try and score a few autographs as today was a total bust for batting practice.
I snagged nine baseballs yesterday at Salt River Fields so getting shutout today sucked.
Here’s a few game pictures.
Rox Addict and Amy on the berm.
Giants get the win over the Mariners 7-5.
By the time we got back to the campsite I was done.Peoria’s a cool stadium but it’s no Salt River Fields.
I”m “D” The Ranter and the Spring Training Road Trip continues…
First off let me thank all of you who took the time to submit pictures for my Photo Contest, in my eyes you’re all winners.
Secondly I couldn’t in all fairness judge the photo entries myself so a huge Thank You goes out to Tom Helmer of ROOT SPORTS for taking time out of his busy schedule to judge the photos for this contest.
These are your first, second and third place photos as judged by Tom Helmer along with his comments.
The double rainbow over Coors field. “It’s a double rainbow man!, Maybe it will double the number of wins at Coors Field next year.
3 Amigos. “I know it’s not intimidating to see your bullpen with pink backpacks and holding hands but it makes for a heck of a photo”.
Fist Bump “I don’t care if it’s the Reds or any other team rolling through. A fist bump from a player to a little fan is always cool”.
Katerina, Nicolle and Michael Congratulations!!!!
Katerina wins the Carlos Gonzalez figurine.
Nicolle wins the Jason Giambi autographed Rockies Card
Michael wins the Carlos Gonzalez autographed baseball card.
Winners please email me so I can arrange to get your prizes delivered.
Thanks again to Gary X for donating the Giambi and Cargo autographed cards.
I’m the Ranter and I think I’ll roll with this Photo Contest next year.
The Birth of Vanny Castilla…The Mobile Blogging Unit
Love em or hate em, it’s almost always a conversation starter when you see VW bus roll by.
I’ve been fascinated by all types of vans since I was a kid. My admiration for the VW bus in particular hit me in my late 20’s. At the time I was single and I dreamed of owning a bus because to me a bus represented independence and adventure and it meant never being stuck without a place to sleep.
The innovative idea of the Mobile Blogging Unit was brought to life in my second year of MLBlogging. The original MBU was a 28 foot camper which was my father-in-laws. He graciously let a buddy and I (Andy from Spring Training), use it for the nine days we were in Tucson in 2009.
It worked great for our time down there and the built-in shower was handy to have, but when the trip was all over I realized I didn’t need anything nearly that big.
(Not so funny story, the original MBU burned to the ground from a refrigerator fire last year..On the plus side, nobody was injured. This is not the actual fire it’s a prop used for dramatic effect).
That’s when I started to ponder a VW Camper bus as my MBU. I used to have a 1973 VW bus(transporter) back in the day before I met my wife Krista. I owned it for about a year and it was my daily driver. When it started to go have major engine troubles I had to let it go and get something more reliable as I had a rather long commute to work.
This time around the bus would not be a daily driver. The purpose of this bus would be for family road trips, Rockies games, Broncos tailgating and for the most looked forward to of all baseball events….Spring Training.
See folks when your gig is taking pictures it’s not about how fast you can get to where you’re going. It’s ALL about what I mentioned earlier, the adventure and having fun along the way. If speed is your thing believe me you don’t want any part of a VW bus.
Vanny Castilla will have a built-in computer for blogging , internet connection and cable. I removed the pop-top because I think a Rag-top is the only way to go. When he’s totally finished Vanny will be a tribute to Colorado Sports.(That will be a work in progress).
A little background on Vanny..I had purchased another VW bus about four years ago from a friend. The plan was to restore it but it never happened and I wound up trading it to another friend for a running Toyota 4-Runner(which by the way still runs). Great trade but a big loss to the family.
Early this Spring I started searching for my new MBU. My search led me to a little town in northern Wyoming. After a couple weeks of emailing and exchanging pictures with the owner I knew I had my found my bus. Mike…The Rox Addict used his truck and I rented a car trailer and we both made the voyage north to pick up the future MBU.
A 1969 VW Campmobile…Here’s the bus about a week after I got it home and its first snow in Colorado.
At that point the bus had no name…Just an extremely proud new owner with a dream.
The previous owner of the bus is the X-husband of a local Denver TV celebrity…I won’t mention who she is on here but if you ask me in person I’ll tell you. The previous owner sharing that little bit of information with me left me driving home with a good feeling about my new bus. Props to Mike for making the trek with me.
The road trip was spur of the moment and he’s a great traveling buddy.
Here’s a little VW blast from the past for you.
And my personal favorite.
I really like this VW Commercial.
This is a clip from “That 70’s Show” when Kelso’s vintage VW bus gets destroyed.
My wife thought the bus should be called Ivy. There was a slightly heated discussion about this because I wanted to call the bus Vinny Castilla as this bus is most definitely a dude.
In the end my man Gary X suggested Vanny Castilla and it was such a cool name it stuck.
With the help my friend Robert Harmon for the engine stuff the MBU will be mobile Spring Training 2012. Vanny will be the same color until summer 2012 when he’ll be painted none other than OD Green baby. With personalized RANTER plates Vanny Castilla will be the most recognized VW bus in America.
My goal is to get a picture of Vinny Castilla in front of Vanny Castilla or if I’m lucky get Vinny doing the Running Man pose for the Rox Addict.
Rockies postseason or not…MLBlogs look out…I’m on the way back up…I know you missed me. Sometimes you’ve gotta put things on the back-burner to make your dreams come true…and besides..
You can’t keep the Original F’kn Ranter down
You’re running out of time to send in your picture for the Photo Contest. Get off your duff and send me your best.
Got a VW story…I’d love to hear it…D
ASTROS vs ROCKIES GAME 2
I had a dream I caught a home run ball from Todd Helton the night before this game.
I had front row seats for this game.
I clean caught the first BP home run ball of the day within seconds of reaching the pavilion.
I was in the perfect seat to snag Carlos Lee’s home run in the first inning.
Here’s a link to the video of Lee’s homer and my still ongoing quest to catch a live game home run.
I heard the crack of Carlos’s bat and I knew immediately that this ball was launched close to where I was sitting. Never taking my eyes off of the ball I got up out of my seat and tracked the ball about ten feet to my left. I found myself pressed against the railing behind me. It all happened so quick, as the ball sailed closer I realized it was going to land slightly over my head. I jumped up as high as my body would let me. I’m still not sure if the ball bounced off of my glove or the dude behind me hit my glove with his, but something touched my glove.
I missed it, the perfect opportunity blown.
I sat back down after this and told Amy who was sitting beside me with her dad, “I might as well go home cause nothing else is even going to come close, that’s it for tonight”.
I stayed of course but I was right…Great game, the Rockies take two straight from the Astros with a final score of 8-6.
My quest continues….
Robert recently took his VW bus “Jim Morrison” on his final journey. Robert and Jim headed up to Seattle to catch a couple Mariner games and to get a shot of Jim in front of the space needle. Apparently Robert had tried to get the same picture years back and the weather didn’t cooperate.
Here’s Jim in front of the Space Needle after almost a half a million miles…
Happy Trails Jim…Jim’s replacment…Janice.
My VW bus..aka..Vanny Castilla is coming along too.
I’m the Ranter and right now I’m wishing I was one of those guys who had the “Gift of Lift”.
Props to the Rockies who continue to play better as the season winds down.
Dodgers vs Rockies Game One
Ran into this “flash from the past” struggling to take a hard right while parking today close to Coors Field. Cool horses, terrible beer.
I know the dude pushing the shopping cart is wondering if all those cases if beer are full?
Colorado is a microbrew state..Coors beer isn’t much better but at least it’s a Banquet beer whatever that is? Life is short people. I don’t always drink beer,… but when I do I prefer good beer
No big entry for this game. Batting practice started off slow and was uneventful for the Rockies portion of it. The Dodgers gave some luv to right field and the extreme left side of left field. By the end of BP I had managed to snag two. The first was a ground rule double which I gave to a little boy who was there with his dad.
The second was a toss up that was not thrown hard enough to reach it’s intended recipient and it ended up in my glove. Shortly thereafter it was nestled into the glove of a young Rockies fan.
It was really cool to see Joy and Jim again at Coors and for the first time this season I ran into Queen Geri. Great to see you all. Nice hang’n with Douglas, Amy and her pops in line.
I’d like to get a group picture of as many Rantics as possible one game before the end of this season.Maybe the fireworks game in September??
Oh yeah..They gave away a Giambi T-Shirt today.
Here are a few pictures I thought were worth sharing from this Rockies loss.
First pitch of the game.
Mark Ellis airborne
Long time Rockies Usher “Beard” giving the all clear.
These couple pictures are from when Kemp got tagged in the helmet with the ball. It deflects off the glove then hits his helmet and he drops like a rock.
Seemed like Kemp was ok after a bit.
Helton gets a double.
Jim and Joy feeling about like I was during this game.
The Rockies couldn’t seem to put anything together this evening. When it started to rain I was tired and done and I headed for my truck.
The Rockies lose this one to the Blue 8-2. A big thank you to Jersey Geoff for the ticket to this game. I’m glad I didn’t pay for an expensive seat to watch this snoozer.
Don’t forget to send in your picture for the “Ranter’s Photo Contest” to win that ultra cool Carlos Gonzalez figurine.
I’m the Ranter, tomorrow is “The Duece’s” bobblehead day. I’ll be there standing in line along with half of Colorado.
”Why Baseball is Still the Greatest Sport of all Time”
The first entry in the RANTER’S PHOTO CONTEST is from Michael Sacs.
Props to Michael for getting the ball rolling with a great picture.
The next photo entry is from “Pretty in Purple” attached with this note…
This photo was taken August 1, 2011 vs the Phillies featuring, you guessed it, a loss.
I’ve titled it “The Promise of Next Spring”.
This is just one of the reasons I think baseball is the greatest sport of all time. No matter how awful and disappointing today is, there’s always tomorrow, or next Spring. It is a game that makes us optimists and dreamers with each new scoreboard or calendar change.
I snapped this pic walking up to the park. It reminded me of that promise. Then after watching the game, I realized I would indeed have to wait for the promise of Spring.
I hope you enjoy it!
Katerina a.k.a. “prettyinpurple”
Thanks Katerina, that’s an amazing shot…WOW
The third photo entry is the first Blogger to enter. It’s Matthew Jackson and he writes the MLBlog http://bloggingboutbaseball.mlblogs.com/
Here’s what Matt had to say:
This photo is one I took at Angel Stadium… I just love the sunset and being able to see the whole stadium.
I hope you like it!
Beautuful shot Matt thanks for sharing and Good Luck!
The next entry is from Jim. Here’s what Jim had to say about his picture.
Thanks for sharing your picture Jim.
The next picture is from Amy in Colorado.
Here’s Amy’s quote for the picture..
Vegas baby! Sky Sox Vs. Las Vegas 51’s…. It’s not a purse, it’s a satchel…. Indiana Jones wears one!”
Nice pic Amy, looks like a good time. I’d ask you what happened but it’s Vegas and you probably wouldn’t tell me. Thanks for entering.
The next picture entry is from Andrew. Here’s Andrew’s quote for this picture..
Andrew sent another picture that is not entered in the contest but was worth sharing.
Check out Deal’n Doug’s Bling
Wow…Glad he’s on our side….Andrew’s caption for this picture was.
Next is Joy aka LUVMYROX’s entry…This is a photo of Hunter and Mylee at Batting Practice a while back.
Thanks for your entry Joy and Good Luck.
This next picture is from Nicolle and it’s a sweet picture. Here’s what Nicolle had to say about her picture.
Thank you Nicolle and good luck to you!
The final entry is from Dominic. Here’s what Dominic had to say about his picture.
Hurry up…Send your photo to THEROCKPILERANTER@YAHOO.COM
I was really impressed with the number of Essays that were submitted for the Essay Contest on the Rant earlier this year. All of the Essays were great but some of you seriously put some time and energy into those essays and I appreciate that.
So…I’m going to make this next Contest a lot easier. This one’s a…
Seems only right with the Rant being all about photos…
“The theme for The Rant’s Photo Contest is…”Why Baseball is Still the Greatest Sport of all Time”
Show me what you got, send me your best…This Photo contest is open to EVERYONE.
Except Mike the Rox Addict..Sorry Mike, you’ve got a figurine already and you’re too good brotha.
Use your imagination. You don’t need a fancy camera to participate. The judging isn’t on picture quality it’s on picture content. The judge for this contest will be none other than ROOT SPORTSown Tom Helmer who graciously agreed to be the judge.
The Rant’s Photo Contest winner will be announced September 21st 2011 via this Blog.
You may only submit one picture for consideration. Now, I realize that a person could send in a picture and then a few games later wind up taking what they think is the picture of a lifetime so I’m going to allow one substitution per person because I’m cool like that.
SO YOU’RE WONDERING….WHAT WILL THE WINNER RECEIVE?
I happen to have one extra Numbered Carlos Gonzalez Figurine. Cargo is holding a silver bat and wearing a golden glove. These figurines have a limited run of 1000 only.
This one is #850. I’d love to show you what Cargo looks like but I wont pull it apart to assemble it. The winner can do that.
Not many folks were able to attend that game so these figurines are EXTREMELY collectible. Just ask Gary X who managed to snag 001 out of 1000.
Second place is a Colorado Rockies card with Jason Giambi’s autograph.
Third place is a Carlos Gonzalez autographed card.
Both cards were donated by Gary X..Thank you G!
Send your picture ASAP to THEROCKPILERANTER@YAHOO.COM
The cutoff for emailing your picture is Sept 20th, 2011.
I’m the Ranter…What are you waiting for?
PHILLIES VS ROCKIES GAME TWO
Notice the temperature? July was a record breaking month in Colorado as far as the heat goes but today was overcast and drizzling at times. The cooler weather was a nice change.
Here are your Starting Lineups
Even with the drizzle the cages were up and BP was roll’n. I kind of felt like a ball magnet today as I had a lot of play during BP. I was hoping that would work to my advantage during the game as I had a front row pavilion seat today.
(I’m Still buck’n for that first Game Homer)…Thanks Mister Ticket Mister.
I’ll spare you the suspense…It didn’t happen.
The first two BP balls I snagged were toss-ups from Phillies players that were bobbled by Phillies fans. I made sure those two balls found homes with Rockies fans. My next snag was a ground rule double that hit fast and bounced off of my glove. A few quick steps later and I scooped up my own bobble.
I didn’t want BP to end without actually catching one. There was a break in the clouds and the baseball gods shined briefly enough for me to catch one on the fly from an unknown Phillies player shortly before the players left the field. Props to Mike the Rox Addict for snagging a ground rule double ball that tipped off my glove while surrounded by Phillies fans eager for that ball.
I believe Amy snagged four balls and Jersey Geoff , Dan and Ken had a few nice snags too.
Here are your Rockies warming up.
Chris Iannetta flashing me the Ranter sign.
The only Rockies player that I saw walk up to the wall and sign was Mark Ellis.
Props to you Mark, shame on the rest of you.
Guess “The Duece” has been teaching classes on how to avoid signing autographs.
Other than catching baseballs my second favorite thing to do at the ballpark is take action pictures. However there was a severe lack of action from the Rockies so here are a few Phillies pictures.
I feel ya EY.
I don’t get the Rockies. If I didn’t have so much fun hang’n with my friends at Coors Field I doubt I attend many more games this season.
The Coors Field late innings two out magic is all but dead. This game was uneventful, unexciting, unfulfilling and unfun.
Keep ignoring your fans Rockies and nothing good will come of it.
I also want to wish Ubaldo Jiminez the best of luck with the Indians. Nasty Fasty was a class act and was the nicest most approachable Rockies player I have ever met. I’m not happy with the decision to Trade Ubaldo or the manner in which it was executed, but we all knew the Rockies were do to make a pitching blunder of some sort.
At least he can’t come back and haunt us in the American League? unless…Nah
I’m the Ranter…I’m thinking I picked the right season to back off the baseball games a bit and work hard on my Mobile Blogging Unit…AKA
I need to get him ready for Broncos Tailgating and Spring Training 2012.