Thursday, July 28, 2011

Baseball: Mud Hens vs. Tides

I like baseball.  I especially like baseball at Fifth-Third Field, which is one of the nicest ball fields I've ever been to.  Last night I watched the Toledo Mud Hens try to pound the snot out of the Norfolk Tides. The Mud Hens lost, but they could have won this one.  Uncle Sardonicus got the tickets and as usual scored some really good seats.  I hate trying to watch a game from the nose bleed section.

Bases Loaded
 At the bottom of the fourth the Hens loaded the bases, mainly due to the Tides pitcher royally screwing the pooch.  The Hens had three men on base and no outs, making the Tides pitcher wonder just what it was he'd done to piss off the Almighty.

Thorman Up to Bat
I had some real hope that Thorman would put one over the Budweiser sign.  He had the right attitude and a good average - hey, if you don't like .234 then let me ask you: when was the last time anyone asked you to play triple-A ball?
Over the fence!  Over the fence!
Sadly, this was not to be.  Thorman fouled two pitches off, one of which went into the parking lot behind the stadium.  He had plenty of power behind the swing, but the Tides pitcher found some kind of second wind.

Dishing it Up
Mitch Atkins pitched most of the game, and although he'd managed to get himself into this position (bases loaded, no outs) I'll give the man credit.  He got himself out - three times.  I think Thorman should have given up on the grand slam and just tried for a hot grounder.  The Tides would likely get Thorman out at first base but the Hens would have gotten another run in.  Besides that, with the bases loaded they might have tried to get the ball back to their catcher instead of trying to get Thorman out at first, and I don't think they were up to a play like that.  Atkins struck out two more batters and I decided to get some ice cream.

Ice Cream Stand
This is Toft’s Dairy, staffed by mentally challenged senior citizens in front and disorganized soccer moms in back.  I waited for five minutes and the line didn't move, nor was anyone leaving with ice cream.  I would have left except that I promised myself I'd bring Mom a hot fudge sundae and surprise her, so I stayed.  And stayed.  And then stayed some more, patiently waiting for the staff to stop tripping over each other and get organized, which they failed to do.  What a bunch of clowns.

By the time I ordered the place had run out of vanilla, so I asked for chocolate instead.  I don't know what they put in my sundae, but it wasn't regular chocolate ice cream.  It was some sort of concoction that tasted like Nestle's Quick combined with a ground up sponge.  The portion was small and it was over priced.  This is the only vendor I've found at Fifth Third Field that I will stay away from in the future.

I returned in time to catch Muddy and some other blue thing cavorting around on the field.  I have no idea what the blue thing is or what it's supposed to be.  All I can say is that the usual entertainment games were not up to the usual standards.

Mysterious Blue Thing
The Public Address (P.A.) system was turned up too loud.  Imagine that you're sitting back, pleasantly relaxing over your second beer and watching the game.  You lean over to tell Uncle Sardonicus to stop tormenting his wife (who is sitting in front of us by now) and the stupid announcer drowns out all conversation, background music and coherent thought as he blasts some stupid trivia at you.  Message to announcer: Shut up.   What an ass.

If the Mud Hens would just listen to Uncle Sardonicus, we'd have a brief assault and battery incident.  Okay, wait... they'd win the game.  But they won't, likely because Uncle Sardonicus is being drowned out by the announcer.  Maybe it's just as well.

In spite of my bad experience at Toft’s Dairy (which gets a zero in customer service and a zero in food quality) I had a great time at the ball game.  If you haven't been to Fifth Third Field, I suggest you call in sick at work and go see the Mud Hens play.


Capt. Schmoe said...

Minor league baseball - the best entertainment deal in professional sports in my opinion!

Although we don't have any AA or AAA teams anywhere close to here, we do have an A affiliate not too far away. We usually catch a couple of game per year, usually on "Fat Tuesday" (box seat & all u can eat buffet for $14.95 every tues home game) or on "Thirsty Thursday" ( 2.oo beer - every thur. home game)

We have a blast, the baseball can be good, although it is single A - anything can and does happen.

You are lucky to have the Hens, a famous AAA team, so close.

Enjoy the season.

Mad Jack said...

Fat Tuesday sounds like a good time, but given a choice I'd pick Thirsty Thursday. Now that sounds like fun!

Pro baseball is the most deadly dull game in the world, but the minor leagues are a great time. I also like watching the sandlot teams play.