May 10, 2011

Checking in

The 2011 baseball season is 41 days old today and when the day is done, I will have seen 20 games (in person), including trips to Kansas City and Arlington. Cheryl has been with me for all but one of those games. We’ve already seen more games than most sane people do in a year.

I recognize that we may be a little crazy. Then again fan is short for “fanatical” and if we are anything, we are just that – fanatical.

Next week, while the Angels are away Cheryl and I will make our first ever trip to see the Inland Empire 66ers as guests of the team for a special “Bloggers night.” If you’ve never been to a minor league baseball game, you should give it a try; it’s very fan and family friendly and a ton of fun.

So, here we are on May 10, the Angels are in first place and it’s time to check in. I know I’ve written several posts, but today is all about really checking in, taking stock, reflecting and just chatting in general.

We’ve seen a lot of stuff and taken a lot of mental notes along the way. First of all, it’s absolutely awesome to see the Angels a top of the Western Division. Even though it’s early, it’s still nice just the same.

I’ve noticed quite a few things in my first 41 days of the season; including things I didn’t expect to see and things I’ve never seen before.

So far… we’ve seen Peter Bourjos hit two stand-up triples in a single game. We saw Dan Haren throw a one-hitter and Alexi Amarista and Tyler Chatwood make their major league debuts. We’ve seen more of Hank Conger than we ever thought we would (and that’s a good thing) and we’ve seen Mark Trumbo make an early case for Rookie of the Year honors. We’ve seen Jered Weaver take the next step in what is shaping up to be a tremendous career and Mike Scioscia even managed a milestone of his own with his 1,000 win as a manager (although we missed that).

We thought we’d have seen Kendrys Morales on the field by now and now we have no idea when we will have that pleasure. We didn’t expect to see Vernon Wells hit below .200 and now he’s hit the disabled list. We’ve seen more than enough of Scott Kazmir, but he’s sure to show up again at some point in time.

Along the way, we’ve celebrated our birthdays at the stadium (the Angels lost both games), eaten a few hotdogs, met Angels alums Eli Grba, Albie Pearson, Bob Lee, Roger Repoz, Moose Stubing and Scott Lewis for the first time and got reacquainted with Mark Langston, Troy Percival, Rod Carew Chuck, Finley, Bob Boone, Rex Hudler, Tim Salmon and Shigetoshi Hasegawa as well.

Sadly, we’ve lost a few 514 Fanatics this year – as some of them did not renew their tickets for one reason or another. Our section has been a little less festive and even those that returned haven’t been around as much as in years past. We seemed to be a little more spread out; however, it hasn't stopped us from making the best of the times at the ball park.

Cheryl has been busy baking and bringing cupcakes and other goodies to share with our neighbors in the stands. Other fanatics have brought goodies of their own from time to time and even though are numbers have dwindled, we are never lacking for food and fellowship in 514.

Baseball games at Angels' stadium are much more than just baseball games for us. We get to spend time with friends, family, etc. Over the years we’ve seen fanatics get married, have children, celebrate milestones, birthdays and even pass away. The experiences are not limited to what happens on the field for us and quite frankly, we wouldn’t have it any other way.

We never know what's going to happen at a game; be it on the field or off. Last night we learned that fellow fanatics Jeff and Lena are expecting their second child. Looks like their son Elijah is going to have a sibling in October. I guess there's more than one way to recruit new fanatics!


  1. Oh man, I sat in 514 on Sunday for Sosh's 1000th! We took my mother-in-law and my wife's whole family to the game for Mother's Day (and those ridiculous hats). It was a great view of the game, and no one really drove me crazy (and that almost always happens at ballgames).

    I hope to become a season-ticket holder in the near future, as soon as it becomes financial ability, and I'm glad that you have such a great relationship with those around you for 81 games a year.

    Love seeing the Angels where they are right now, and hope to see them continue to put Texas their rear-view. I just hope the A's don't stay this hot all season.

  2. Sorry we missed you!