Baseball turns to gold

Last Friday — I’m only just now posting this because I was waiting for my DSL to be active before uploading the photos — Jason and I went to see the Fullerton Flyers play the Chico Outlaws. This is the Golden Baseball League, a brand-new independent league with four teams in California, three teams in Arizona, and one team that doesn’t have a home. So we braved Fourth of July weekend traffic on our way to the campus of Cal State University Fullerton (yes, we’re in the car pool lane, but it was still slow going)…

We liked it right from the get-go, because while we were in the ticket line, we heard the people in line behind us discussing the fact that you could get 2-for-1 tickets if you showed a Vons or Pavilions club card. Jason did so, and so we got two tickets for $8. (The offer on the web site says you’re supposed to have a club card and a receipt, but they didn’t ask him for a receipt.) They also handed out free full-color programs including rosters and scorecards — nothing too elaborate, 12 pages, 5-1/2 by 8-1/2.

The name “Fullerton Flyers” is railroad-related, because Fullerton is a railroad town (they even have an event called Fullerton Railroad Days every year). And the theme extended to the front gate…

Incidentally, here’s a close-up of the poster at the gate. Notice what’s at the bottom of the list of prohibited items. I’m not sure how they enforce it…

And the concessions trailer has railroad heralds stuck to it, seemingly at random (neither the Rio Grande nor the Pennsylvania Railroad ever served Fullerton)…

And the mascot’s name is Coal Train, who is apparently a coyote wearing engineer’s overalls. I’m not sure what a coyote has to do with railroading, except that there were a few Road Runner cartoons in which Wile E. Coyote got run over by trains…

Because of the train and the coyote, they have two sound effects, the “train whistle” and the “coyote howl,” that are played incessantly over the P.A. system. In fact, “Charge” isn’t da-da-da-da-da-da, “Charge!”, it’s da-da-da-da-da-da, howl.

The Cal State Fullerton Titans baseball team has a weird set of retired numbers in right center. Oh, wait, those aren’t retired numbers, those are the years they won the national championship…

The Flyers pitch to the Outlaws…

The Flyers’ Garry Templeton II — son of Flyers manager Garry Templeton — attempts a bunt…

Jason bought the “medium” size of Kettle Korn, so named because the bag could feed a medium-sized European country…

The size of the Kettle Korn is probably why Coal Train was doing exercises with some kids on the field at one point…

It was Wacky Hat Night, but I didn’t manage to get any pictures of the truly wacky hats, just this patriotic attempt in front of us…

And this, which isn’t so much wacky as it is a souvenir of the Billy Goat Tavern…

Don’t you hate people who talk on their cell phones at baseball games?

The Flyers won 3-2 (I couldn’t get a good picture of the scoreboard through the netting to prove this), with the difference being a home run by Fullerton catcher Casey Clary; the attendance was announced as 758. The level of play was similar to Class A in the “official” minor leagues, I’d estimate. One plus of the Golden Baseball League: their “competition,” the California League, uses the designated hitter; the GBL doesn’t.

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