I forgot to mention that I filled out a handful of All-Star ballots while at the game — and on the American League side, I voted for all the Devil Rays. That way they won’t feel quite so bad when the only Ray who gets to go to Pittsburgh is Scott Kazmir.
Yes, I went to this game alone, because all my friends here in L.A. have jobs and are a lot less likely than Levi to take a half day off to go to a game. On this date in Dodger history, in 1963, Sandy Koufax pitched a no-hitter. No such luck for Derek Lowe today, although he was fairly effective; the real problem was some fielding mistakes by the Dodgers, notably an amusingly botched rundown. So the Dodgers’ winning streak came to an end, and now they have to go to San Francisco and spend three games intentionally walking Barry Bonds.
Cheesesteaks are new at Dodger Stadium this year, courtesy of a local chain called South Street, to which I was introduced by hanger-on Jason. Their Dodger Stadium cheesesteaks are half the size and twice the price of the ones they serve in the restaurant — but, still, it was pretty tasty, and a nice change of pace from a Dodger Dog.
For the first time, I brought my radio and listened to it during the game — might as well get some use out of it, I figured, since I never use it at home, not even its NOAA weather radio-receiving functions. (It’s just a cheap AM/FM/TV/weather portable radio, not a fancy radio that turns itself on whenever there’s a thunderstorm watch in the middle of the night, like a certain other baseballrelated.com poster has in his bedroom.) Vin Scully gets simulcast on radio and TV for the first three innings, which is great, although he’ll occasionally say something that sounds like a complete non sequitur when you’re listening on the radio because it obviously relates to something not quite game-related that’s being shown on TV at that moment. Today was school field trip day, and a couple of times, he was referring to what must have been shots of kids in the stands.
Anyway, for the fourth inning and on, Charley Steiner and Rick Monday come in to do the radio only. They’re fine, except that they’re not Vin Scully. Now, Rick Monday — if you’ve got to be known solely for one thing, there are a lot worse things you could be known for than “keeping an American flag from being set on fire.” And Charley Steiner — well, when the Dodgers were down 4-2 and had the bases loaded for Kenny Lofton in the bottom of the ninth, he was excited enough that I was expecting him to blurt out “Follow me to freedom!” if Lofton got a hit. But he flew out to end the game.
Another advantage of listening to the radio — they announced the attendance about a half-inning before “Guess the Attendance” was played in the stadium, thus allowing me to loudly and confidently yell out that it was choice “A” on the scoreboard. So, in conclusion, I’ll probably bring my radio again if I’m going to a game by myself, or if I’m going to a game with someone I don’t want to talk to.
I should mention that this was all prompted by my mother. She suggested a couple weeks ago that I go to a weekday afternoon baseball game before I start my new full-time job on the 17th. I said, in my Eric Cartman voice, “But, Maaaaaaahm, the Dodgers don’t plaaaaaaay any weekday afternoon games.” I looked at the schedule anyway, and saw this game, so there you go.
Relating to that job: I temporarily have a PC in my living room within view of my TV, and Levi now has Internet access at home. Way back at the beginning of the season, I suggested that the two of us should watch the same game simultaneously, instant-message each other during the game, and post the log here. However, we haven’t yet been able to come up with a time that both of us are able to actually do this — Levi’s busy at work, as usual, and seems to have more of a life on the weekends than I do, and tends to attend a few Cubs games, especially when they’re playing the Cardinals, and since he’s just recently moved up to home Internet access, it’s probably going to be a while until he has a Treo or Blackberry and can use the Internet from the Wrigley Field stands. (To be fair, there’s been a couple of games when Levi was available but I wasn’t.) And now I’m not 100% sure how busy I’ll be at my new job, but I am certain that it will preclude us from scheduling this for one of those weeknight ESPN games that starts at 7:00 Eastern — I’ll still be at work at 4:00 Pacific. It also doesn’t help that we’re limited by the baseball schedules of ESPN/ESPN 2, WGN, and TBS, since those are the only networks that we can both watch together, and neither of us is too excited about doing this during a Braves game on TBS.
All of this is to say that there will probably be an IM transcript posted here when you least expect it.