Greetings from Sarasota. guys. So, I tried to live-twitter the game, but it's not very effective when it posts 7 hours after you send the text. I'll be trying a little different strategy tomorrow, so we'll see how that works out. Some notes about the game:
- Ed Smith Stadium... it's probably good that it's in its "sunset season". I was pretty surprised how little seating there actually was.
- The Reds handle the concessions, for the most part, so the prices are the same as GABP. 18 bucks got me a Big Red Smokey and 2 beers. Not terrible.
- Not much Reds merch to be had either. I tend to notice the jersey shirts, and you'd have better luck finding one outside of GABP from one of the vendors. They only ones they had around the park was Francisco Cordero, Homer Bailey, and I saw an Arroyo one when I was on my way out. I decided going in that I needed a new one, so I got an Old Hoss one. And, if he gets traded, I can add it to my collection of throwbacks.
- Before the game, the players were really accessible with fans. It reminded me a lot of Bengals training camp, if you've ever been there.
- It was kind of cool seeing some Reds personalities in a normal atmosphere. Grande was walking around before the game, chatting up fans and signing stuff (he's a PIMP, by the way), and I saw the Cowboy on his way to the concession stand, probably. My friend swears he brushed up against Thom after the game, I didn't see him though.
- Micah Owings looked really comfortable on the mound. Seems like the pressure of the #5 battle isn't getting to him.
- The lack of a radar gun on the scoreboard kind of prevented me from getting a good idea of how the pitchers were throwing. I could tell that Coco was throwing hard, even though he was getting lit up. Maloney didn't look good coming out of the bullpen. Rhodes and Weathers looked okay.
- The two guys that I came away impressed with most were Jonny Gomes and Laynce Nix. Both of them hit the ball hard. Nix's would have been a double if Buck (freaking) Coats didn't make a great play in center to get the ball.
- Jacque Jones must read this site, because he created some sweet HAVOC. Dickerson, not so much.
- The highlight of the game had to have been some fans around my section along the 1st base line geting to Wes Bankston's head. One was a Rays fan who was heckling Gomes the entire game, but when Bankston came in, every time a ball came his way, he heard a "Gomes would have had that!". When executed properly, heckling can be pretty damn hilarious.
Some pics of the day are after the jump.
Tired, old, Ed Smith stadium from the outside.
George Grande off in the distance, getting his mack on.
The Hall-of-Famer walking around before the game.
Jacque Jams swinging the bat before the game
Chris Valaika was just happy that people were recognizing him.
Dusty and Darren, waving to the loyal fans.
Dickerson signing some stuff pretty close to our section. Definitely one of the nicer guys on the team, it seems.
Micah on the mound.
Dickerson seconds before getting piunked.
BP and Keppinger flat out walking back to the clubhouse after they got taken out.
Coco and Edwin walking back. I saw that there were talks of him being hurt in the game thread, but I didn't see anything. Hopefully I'll get to see him tomorrow.
That's all for me today. Hopefully I'll be able to get some better pics tomorrow in Clearwater.