Saturday, May 27, 2006

Take me lots of baseball games

The second most important thing about coming to Minnesota was to be able to catch a lot of baseball games. For my brother in laws, this was their chance to see their beloved Twins as much as they can. But more importantly, as baseball fans in general, we are up for spending as much time as possible at the park as possible. So I included this special post for all the baseball that went on this week....


It started simply on Tuesday night with a game with the local amateur baseball team in Prior Lake. Amateur baseball is big around here and they take it seriously. The park was beautiful for a local baseball field and the play was pretty good. It definitely gave me that "For the Love of the Game" feeling. To top it off, our presence inspired the team to their first win of the year!


On Wednesday we decided that we could wait no more and attended the Twins-Indians matinee at the Metrodome. We were totally excited to be there and even splurged on some good seats about 20 rows behind home plate.


The place definitely had a cavernous feeling, but I thought it was pretty cool. The air conditioning was especially welcomed on a humid day and I saw a sight I have never seen at a baseball game (having never seen a game outside of California)....a beer man! Guys walking up and down the aisles carrying heavy trays of beer and ice so you don't have to get up? It was amazing! I wanted to shake their hand, but wanted to buy what they were offering more....


We had such a good time (a relative concept, of course. The Twins were thumped 11-0 by Vallejo native C.C. "Cheeseburger" Sabathia and the Indians) that we went back on Friday with the whole family, as well as the family with whom we have been staying with. This turned out to be even more special as they picked that night to celebrate the recent passing of Legislature to build a new ball park for the Twins. The governor was there to sign the bill, past Twins legends were on hand (my favorites - Jack Morris, Dan Gladden, Rod Carew, and in my favorite Twin of all time (no disrespect to Kirby), Harmon Killebrew), and every fan received a free hot dog and soda. Plus it was a match up of the future of baseball as Francisco Liriano of the Twins faced Felix Hernandez of the Mariners...the night pretty much went according to script, leading to a 3-1 victory for the Twinkies. Our crowd went wild with the victory....


Perhaps the best experience of all, however, came Saturday night, as we visited the greatest spectacle of Minor League baseball -- The St. Paul Saints. The independent league with really no one to answer to carried the wacky minor league promotions torch with pride with the logo "Fun is Good."


Where to begin the craziness? The pig mascot "Mudonna" roaming the field? The real live pig that brings the umpire new baseballs between inning named Bud Squealig? The fan harness onto a billboard in left field and told that if he caught a ball while stuck up there all game, he would win $10,000? ... No, I think it has to be the fact that we attended the game where they celebrated the 30th anniversary of The Love Boat. Pictures of the B-actors that made guest appearances on the show were plastered all over the stadium. Games in between innings (included one involving Mrs. Brittany Kwong herself) had a Love Boat flavor to it....and did I mention the giveaway? A rubber toy boat colored purple and gold, reminding us of a certain local football team and their experiences on a "Love Boat". The giveaway was worth the 4 dollars general admission itself. A whole night of entertainment as well made it one of the best time I have had at a baseball park. Go Saints!


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