Wednesday, September 6, 2023

First Visit to Oriole Park at Camden Yards

First post of the year and it's September already.  You'd think I've been asleep like Rip Van Winkle!

This year, I've been watching more baseball on TV.  Several reasons have contributed to this: the pitch clock, Orioles being really good, and friends who watch the Birds religiously.

In my opinion, the pitch clock might be the main reason why MLB will become more popular and attract new fans.  I've watched plenty of MLB games on TV and this season's viewings have been a better experience.  I've also been to many Nationals games over the years but this O's game was different for sure.  

Gone are the days of the typically long 3 to 3.5 hour baseball games.  It still might happen occasionally but 2.5 hours is the new norm.  The action is back and the eyeballs stay glued to the pitcher's mound.

In the 15 years I've been in the DC metro area, I'd never made it to an O's game.  It was time to change that.  I met my friends in Baltimore City proper after work and by 6pm we were at Pickles Pub.  The place has been around for 35 years.  A cold beer on a pleasant August evening is all one can ask for before the battle of the birds.  The Blue Jays were in town.

After the beers, we headed inside the Oriole Park.  I got a proper tour and another cold beer while the game was delayed a bit due to the "inclement weather."  In reality, there was one rain shower that lasted 10 minutes.  Rest of the evening turned out perfect.

I got to walk down Eutaw Street.  There was the bronze statue of Babe Ruth and all the home run plaques including Ken Griffey Jr.'s (465 feet) on the warehouse from the 1993 home run derby.  O's newest fan pictured below.

We got pretty lucky with our seats.  They were 14 rows above the home plate and cost under $75 thanks to one of the ticket resale websites.

I was looking forward to seeing Kremer pitch but he was moved up a day, so we got to see Gibson on the mound.  I'm a fan of Mullins and Bautista and they both had good games.  Mullins pictured below battling the Puerto Rican pitcher, Berrios.

In the above photo, you can see Bautista pitching vs the 2023 home run derby champ, Vladimir Guerrero Jr.  The Battle of the Dominicans!

The Blue Jays went up 2-0 in the 4th inning.  In the bottom of the 4th, Santander hit a two-run home run to tie it up.  In the 5th, Mullins came through with a two-run homer for the O's.  Henderson drove in another run and the O's were up 5-2.  In the 6th, the Blue Jays smacked one out of the park to make it 5-3.  Bautista came in bottom of the 9th to relieve Gibson who went 8 and did well.  The Mountain struck out the last 3 Blue Jays and the Orioles won again!

As I said at the beginning, baseball is changing.  The happy fans left Camden Yards 2 hours and 15 minutes after the first pitch.  Looking forward to the playoffs and O's making a deep run like the Nats did in 2019!

Monday, December 19, 2022

Judging the World Cup

With working from home still in effect, I saw a lot of the World Cup matches.  The tournament started on a downer.  Qatari government announced that no alcohol would be sold to the fans.  It was a big reversal from what was promised going way back.  There were no surprises during the first three days of the tournament.  On day four, Saudi Arabia shocked everyone (including themselves) by coming from behind to beat Argentina.  A 23 to 1 underdog came out on top!

Saturday, December 3, 2022

A Punch to the Gut

I wrote in my Summer Vacation post the following - I ordered a lobster that came with steamed vegetables and a side of mashed potatoes.  It was delicious.  Within one hour of getting back to our room, the sprints to the bathroom started and they didn't end until the morning.  I'll write a post on this topic soon.

Four months later and I'm just getting to it.

Thursday, November 10, 2022

Trip to the Jersey Shore

I had started writing part 2 of the Summer Vacation post in late August but I never made it past the second paragraph.  The trip to Tennessee was leisurely.  My son and my brother's two sons got a chance to play together over the long weekend.  I played two rounds of golf with my brother and friends.  Nothing eventfully really happened but that's a good thing.

As for the stomach bug from the last post, I'm gonna have to come back to that in December.  Today's post is about another trip.

Wednesday, August 3, 2022

Summer Vacation

This past July, I flew to the UK from the US in 30 minutes!  How is that possible?  What kind of a plane did you use? you might ask.  Well, I used a technicality!  The flight was not from IAD, JFK, or BOS in the US to LHR in the UK.  That type of flight would take about 7 hours.