Archive for the ‘ Dailies ’ Category

Weird Observing Baseball Facts and Records

Ah weird numbers: my specialty. So, it was completely natural for me to write this entry. What better to do than find arbitrary statistics about my blog and place meaning in them. Just call me the Tim Kurkjian of the MLBlogs world. (Kurkjian still does the “Kurk-gems” segment, right? I’ve pretty much stopped watching Baseball Tonight in favor of MLB Tonight on MLB Network.) Here goes some of the random numbers.

Words:

First, let’s start off with the big one: number of words total. Over the course of this blog, I have written 225, 518 words. That’s a lot of words. I am astounded by this number personally. With the number of entries I currently have up, that works out to an average of 823 words per entry. However, you’ve got to keep in mind there are certain kinds of entries that are way under and over this average. For example, none of my “Re-view of the Preview” entries even reached this number. I don’t think any of them even surpassed the 600 word plateau. With the average for the thirty of those being 200-300 words, it brings the average way down. If I had to guess, my average ballhawking entry is probably in the 1,400 word range. My longest entry ever is 3,631 words. You can check that out here. It was when I met up with the Cook family in Washington D.C., so I decided to take up Todd Cook’s style of writing for a day and over-document. It wasn’t my longest entry by a mile, though. The next closest entry in terms of words was my informal tour of Citi Field where I covered a lot of ground in general with a guest by the name of Alex also joining in with me. (And for the record: no, he didn’t accompany me on my mini-tour of Citi Field. He entertained himself in the club level while I ran around the stadium for five minutes.) You can check out that entry if you’d like by clicking these words I have typed in this sentence. That entry was 3,344 words long. The least amount of words I have ever written in an entry is 19 words. The reason for it was because the entry itself was pretty much a video entry, so the 19 words were the introduction the video. Click here for the link to that entry. I believe it was my first video filmed with a high-quality camera. And by high-quality, I mean not a webcam. As for the quality of the video…Eh, I made an unsuccessful attempt at a homemade teleprompter that is very obvious when you watch the video.  It’s pretty bad looking bad at it. But hey, cut me some slack; it was my third video ever.

Baseballs given away:

Next fact: The past two years I have snagged 384 baseballs. Of those, I have given 110 of them away. For those who don’t have a calculator, that is 29% of the baseballs I have snagged I have given away. Whenever I talk to people and they ask me the question everyone asks ballhawks: “What do you with all of the baseballs?” I tell them that I give about a third of them away. So that’s pretty accurate, right? In 2011, I gave away 34 of 161 snagged (21%). The most I gave away that year was 4 baseballs in a game. I can’t remember when that was, but to me now, that’s a low “high” number. I think my lack of giving stems from the fact that I was snagging baseballs at a ton of different stadiums for my successful period of ballhawking in July, so I didn’t have to worry about pleasing any ushers for later games. I was planning to give the majority of my baseballs towards the end of the year when I wasn’t as mobile. When this happened, however, I hit an absolute cold streak where I wasn’t snagging more than three baseballs at a game that often at all. As such, I didn’t have that many baseballs to give away. As a result, the middle of the summer remained my peak for giving away baseballs. In 2012, I gave away 76 of 223 baseballs (34%). This was lead by games where I gave away a ton of baseballs. The most I gave out in a game was 7 baseballs ( I snagged 9, I believe that day). However, it was one of three games where I gave away 6 or more baseballs this year.

Pictures:

In my entries I have used a total of 4,545 pictures. That averages out to 16.5 pictures per entry. That’s a lot higher than I would have guessed. Although, I guess the list is top heavy with ballhawking entries bearing the brunt of the load. The most pictures I’ve used in a single entry was the same as the entry where I wrote the most words ever with 80 pictures.

Commemorative Baseballs:

I have snagged 30 commemorative baseballs since I started this blog. I snagged a Citi Field commemorative baseball in 2010, but besides that, all of my commemorative snags have come this past year. My record for snagging commemorative baseballs in one game is 7. This came–I believe–when the Nationals were using nothing but Shea Stadium and Nationals Park commemorative baseballs.

Time Spent On Game:

I have roughly spent 40,882 Minutes on the 85 games I kept track of either the “Time at Game” or “Time Spent On Game” stat for. That’s over 681 Hours I have spent on baseball games. If you don’t know how the stat works, it is the time I spend at the ballpark itself plus the time I spend traveling to and from the ballpark. For the games where I only had the “Time at Game” stat, I added a round amount of hours (usually 2 hours for local games) to the total I had in place to account for transportation time. For those without calculators, the average amount of time I spent on a game was 481 Minutes or just over 8 Hours.

Video:

As of late I have been incorporating videos a little more than before, but I have been using videos in my entries for over a year now. As a result, I have uploaded 6074 seconds of video to YouTube for this blog. Why seconds? Because have you ever tried to add up times when they’re in this format: 6:51+ 4:26? No, because it’s annoying as heck. Also, I do have other YouTube videos out there (I’ll get to some of those in the next entry), but these are the videos made for the purpose of incorporating them into a blog entry. If you’re wondering what that seconds mark translates into in the 0:00 format, though–First of all, get a calculator; I’m sick of doing all of the math for you–it is 101 Minutes 14 Seconds. If you divide that by the number of videos, it is an average of 6:20 per video. However, I should include the caveat that the shortest video I have put on YouTube is 6 six seconds, which kind of throws off the average (and can be found in the entry I’m linking to here). Meanwhile, the longest video is 16 Minutes 2 Seconds. That was the entry where I took apart a baseball a couple weeks ago.

That’s all I have for you for now. Surprisingly–even though it doesn’t appear that way–this entry is over 1,000 words. However, if you have any obscure stats you think of and would like for me to include, leave your suggestions down below in the comments, and if it doesn’t take an eternity to calculate like these almost did, I will calculate it and add a section below that last one right above this paragraph.

I realize I have been off schedule lately, but the holiday/finals time threw a wrinkle in my plans. So, to make it up to you, I plan to have published three new entries (in addition to this one) by/on January, 1, 2013. While it is pretty set in stone what those three will be, you can keep voting on which entries I will write after those in this poll down here. I will include all of the already-used ideas below it as well as the rankings of the remaining categories:

1. Ballhawk Interviews- 33 votes

2. Stadium Profiles- 26 votes

3. Ballhawk Profiles- 33 votes

4. Dissect (a) Baseball(s)- 26 votes

5. Tour Target Field when there’s snow on the ground- 26 votes

6. Weird Observing Baseball Facts and Records- 28 votes

And here are the standings for the remaining poll items as they stand while I type these words:

T1. Observing Baseball Trivia/MLBlogs I Recommend- 28 votes

3. Ballhawking Gear- 27 votes

T4. My Favorite MLB Players/Characters of Observing Baseball- 25 votes

6. Ask a Statistician- 24 votes

T7. Salute to Up-and-coming Blogs/10 Minutes with 2 GMs- 23 votes

9. Instructional Videos- 22 votes

10. My Favorite MLB Teams- 21 votes

T11. Gate Opening Times of MLB Stadiums/Complementary Tickets!- 20 votes

T13. Blast From The Baseball Past/ Battle of the Retreival Devices- 19 votes

15. Reference Guide to Ballhawk Terms- 18 votes

16. Evaluate and Critique Ballhawk Statistics- 16 votes

T17. New Observing Baseball Icon/Look at MLBlogs Themes- 15 votes

19. Format of the Entries- 12 votes

If you’re confused as to what all of these names mean, here is the link to the entry where I explain nearly all of them. And here is the entry where I explain the other two.

Also, you can vote which of the remaining days you’d like to read an entry on. I don’t know, for example if people are more or less likely to read something on Christmas, so here you can tell me that. Unlike the other poll, though, you can only vote for three days and not as many times as you’d like:

227,100 Words Written so far

Tour Target Field in the Snow

Here it is. It was cold. I hope you appreciate it:

Here is the poll if you want to keep voting on which entries you want to see:

Particular attention be paid to “Weird Observing Baseball Facts and Records” and “MLBlogs I Recommend”, since they are tied for the top spot as I write these words.

1. Ballhawk Interviews- 33 votes

2. Stadium Profiles- 26 votes

3. Ballhawk Profiles- 33 votes

4. Dissect (a) Baseball(s)- 26 votes

5. Tour Target Field when there’s snow on the ground- 26 votes

And again, here’s an explanation of all of the items on the poll if you have no idea what any of them mean.

Dissecting/ Deconstructing Baseballs

A long video, but I wanted to be complete with this video rather than rush it and get it out on time. Enjoy my incompetence:

Keep on voting for the entries you’d like to see. If you’ll notice, I’ve taken the parts of the poll down that have already been written about, but I’ll include at the end how many votes they had when I took them off:

1. Ballhawk Interviews- 33 votes

2. Stadium Profiles- 26 votes

3. Ballhawk Profiles- 33 votes

4. Dissect (a) Baseball(s)- 26 votes

If you have no idea what ay of these ideas mean, here’s the link to the entry where I explained them.
Also, the newest “Latest Leaders” entry came out on the MLBlogs’ Central blog and here I am:

Screen Shot 2012-12-08 at 3.43.07 PM

Yeah, I’ve visited a lot of MLBlogs (all of the ones in gray). But more importantly, thank you to all of you guys for reading. Really, thank you. If you want to check out the full entry with links to the other blogs and all that good stuff, here’s the link to it.

Another thing is I was thinking of making a blooper video for this particular video, so you can vote for that here. I got a request from my camera man and guest star to do so, but I want to know if that’s something you’d actually be interested in:

Two more ideas

Have you read my last entry yet? If you haven’t, **HERE** is the link. (Yes, I am aware of the typos in the video; I was since before I published the video, but they are already embedded into the video, so I can’t change them.)

This entry is to add to items onto the end of that poll that I thought of the day after I published the video and entry.

1. Ten Minutes with Two Future GMs- (It’s a working title, okay?) This would be myself and myself and my friend Sean. You may remember him from my 9/12/12 Game. Yes? No? Here’s his picture for those too lazy to click the link:

I know this doesn’t sound like the pitch of the century, but it would be us two baseball-crazed individuals talking about the offseason happenings. Sean is one of those people who is ridiculously knowledgeable about the offseason, so if it counts for anything, *I* really like this idea. And yes, I already ran the idea past Sean, so we’re good in that regard.

2. Complimentary Tickets!-I recently got a complimentary ticket to a certain event for taking pictures last year, and I was wondering if you readers would like to read my blabbing about this stat/sports-geek event for 500-1,000 words.

Anyway, here is the updated poll with these two new items on it:

Also, as of this entry, “Stadium Profiles” is the top choice for type of entry. So, I made a couple of polls for which stadium you readers would most like to read/watch about:

Winter Writing Ideas

1. Blast From The Baseball Past

2. New Observing Baseball Icon

3. Dissecting a Baseball - Except I should clarify I would be dissecting multiple types of baseballs, not just MLB ones.

Be sure to vote as soon as you can because I want to start publishing regular entries this Monday, so I’ll write about what it is that has the most votes at the end of today

Ballhawking Season’s End Review- 2012

If you want to know the context for this entry, here’s last year’s version. I go over stats from the past season of ballhawking. It’s fun for my stat-geek mind. If you’re into stats, it might be fun for you too, but it’s really to have a record of everything. Feel free to leave a comment below suggesting any other stats you’d like to see in the entry.

Here are the overall numbers:

Baseballs (B): 223 (12th on mygameballs.com)

Games (G): 53 (12th on mygameballs.com)

Balls Per Game (BPG): 4.21 (24th on mygameballs.com. Ouch.)

Game Balls (GB): 3 (23rd on mygameballs.com)

Hit Balls (HB): 94

Hit Balls Per Game (HPG): 1.77

Balls Caught On The Fly (COF): 41

Balls Caught On Fly Per Game (CPG): 0.77

Thrown Balls (TB): 119

Thrown Balls Per Game (TPG): 2.25

Easter Eggs (EE): 7 (which is actually less than last year)

Easter Eggs Per Game (EPG): 0.13

Glove Trick Balls (GT): 3

Glove Trick Balls Per Game (GPG): 0.06

Balls During The Game: 5 (less than last year)

Balls After The Game: 16

Average Competition Factor (ACF): 143,718 (16th on mygameballs.com)

High: 11 (14th on mygameballs.com

Overall Snag Tracker:

Stats Broken Down By Month:

April-

B: 17

G: 4

HB: 14

COF: 5

TB: 2

BPG: 4.25

HPG: 3.5

CPG: 1.25

TPG: .5

High: 5

ACF: 130,511

May-

B: 19

G: 4

HB: 8

COF: 2

TB: 11

BPG: 4.75

HPG: 2

CPG: 0.5

TPG: 2.75

High: 8

ACF: 167,425

June-

B: 60

G: 11

HB: 30

COF: 17

TB: 28

GT: 1

EE: 1

BPG: 5.45

HPG: 2.73

CPG: 1.55

TPG: 2.55

GPG: 0.09

EPG: 0.09

High: 11

ACF: 211,817

July-

B: 39

G: 11

HB: 10

COF: 1

TB: 25

EE: 4

BPG: 3.55

HPG: 0.91

CPG: 0.09

TPG: 2.73

EPG: 0.36

High: 7

ACF: 115,158

August-

B: 38

G: 12

HB: 17

COF: 8

TB: 19

EE: 1

GT: 1

BPG: 3.17

HPG: 1.55

CPG: 0.73

TPG: 1.73

EPG: 0.09

GPG: 0.09

High: 9

ACF: 106,822

GB: 1

September-

B: 50

G: 11

HB: 10

COF: 2

TB: 19

EE: 1

GT: 1

BPG: 4.55

HPG: 0.91

CPG: 0.18

TPG: 1.73

EPG: 0.09

GPG: 0.09

High: 8

ACF: 140,522

GB: 2

Balls broken down by Stadium:

New Yankee Stadium-

B: 65

G: 16

HB: 32

COF: 15

TB: 33

BPG: 4.06

HPG: 2

CPG: 0.94

TPG: 2.06

High: 8

ACF: 144,034

Snag Trackers for Yankee Stadium in 2012:

Snag Trackers for just the hit balls:

And for just the thrown baseballs:

Nationals Park-

B: 65

G: 15

HB: 21

COF: 10

TB: 37

EE: 5

GT: 2

BPG: 4.33

HPG: 1.40

CPG: 0.67

TPG: 2.47

High: 9

ACF: 114,684

Snag Trackers for Nationals Park:

Snag Trackers for just the hit balls:

And just for the thrown balls:

Target Field-

B: 53

G: 12

HB: 14

COF: 4

TB: 37

EE: 1

GT: 1

BPG: 4.42

HPG: 1.17

CPG: 0.33

TPG: 3.08

High: 8

ACF: 136,276

GB: 2

Snag Trackers:

Snag Trackers for just hit balls:

And just for thrown balls:

Oriole Park at Camden Yards-

B: 21

G: 4

HB: 17

COF: 9

TB: 4

BPG: 5.25

HPG: 4.25

CPG: 2.25

TPG: 1

High: 11

ACF: 190,801

;

Snag Trackers:

Just the hit balls:

And just the thrown balls:

Citi Field-

B: 14

G: 5

HB: 6

COF: 1

TB: 7

BPG: 2.80

HPG: 1.20

CPG: 0.20

TPG: 1.40

High: 4 (so sad, but so Citi Field at the same time)

ACF: 71,614

GB: 1

Snag Trackers:

Just the hit balls:

And just the thrown baseballs:

Citizens Bank Park:

20121105-035008.jpg

**EDIT/NOTE**: In looking at the image above, I realized I put this into my records incorrectly. I snagged 6 baseballs during this game, as you can see from the entry. That means I actually snagged 224 baseballs this season. I’m dumb for doing that, but I’m just going to leave everything as it is. If you want to see how that extra baseball affects my stats, click the link over there ——> in the sidebar for “my mygameballs.com account”. I got all of these stats from there and the site has more information stored than I could ever write about, so you should check it out anyway and sign-up if you have ever snagged a ball at a baseball game. And to those of you on mygameballs.com, make sure you not only vote for president and all that stuff, but make sure you vote for Ballhawk of the Year and Junior Ballhawk of the Year. Voting is now open for the two awards on your account’s page. Back to the rest of the entry…

In this version because I only attended one game there this season and I didn’t want to do all of the stats stuff for just one game.

As for my New Year’s Resolutions, they’re not really resolutions; they’re goals, but whatever. We’ll see how many of them I managed to reach:

1. Go to 50 games- Yes, I went to 53.

2. Average 4.5 Balls Per Game- No, I averaged 4.21.

3. Go to 8 Stadiums- No, I went to 6, but I could have gone to 8 easily without school getting in the way (both high school and college).

4. Double my career total- Yes, I did it on the last game of the season.

5. Catch one Game Home Run. Period- Yes, Trevor Plouffe’s game-tying home run to be specific.

6. Catch 5 Game Balls total- No, I only got started catching game balls at the end of July and only managed to snag 3. I’ll take game balls in back-to-back games over this goal, though.

7. Be in the mygameballs.com Top 10- No, I was in 12th. You were right, Alex.

8. Go to 10 games at Nationals Park before June’s end- I don’t know what I was thinking when I wrote this goal, but no, I didn’t.

9. Average 5.0 Balls Per Game at Nationals Park- No, I averaged almost half-a-ball under this mark.

10. Average 3.5 Balls Per Game at Citi Field- No, I didn’t anticipate Citi Field becoming a worse ballpark due to their additions.

11. Average 2.5 BPG at Yankee Stadium- Yes, I actually blew this out of the water with a 4.06 average.

12. Improve on my HB/TB ratio- Yes, from 0.51:1 in 2011 to 0.79:1 in 2012.

13. Go to Camden Yards 3 times- Yes, I went 4 times in 2012.

14. Enjoy the summer of Baseball- I would say I did. Some times I wasn’t having fun, but overall, the whole summer was a pure blast.

15. Post Entries Regularly- Compared to 2011, I definitely posted my entries a lot more quickly when discounting these past few entries at the end of the season that have taken me forever to get up.

 

If you made it this far: thank you. You are too kind. (And you probably have a longer attention span than I do. Even if I did write this whole entry pretty much in one night.) I will be trying very hard to get a video up Friday explaining my winter blogging plans. I’m very excited the potentiality for awesomeness the stuff I have planned for the winter, so make sure you check the blog sometime during this next weekend November 9-11. If it isn’t up then, that means I decided to post the video November 12th. Anyway, the winter blogging plans are dependent on reader input, so make sure to read and vote on what you want to read. But anyway, I feel like I’m just confusing you. More explanation will come Friday…or Monday. It depends on when the video comes out. I haven’t even fully scripted the video. If you were wondering, I am planning to get on a regular entry-posting schedule; or at least attempt one. That’ll be in the video too, so like I said, watch out for a video coming soon.

Observing Baseball’s Two-Year Anniversary

Sorry it’s two days late– given October 13th was Observing Baseball’s two-year anniversary– (YouTube was giving me problems uploading it, FOUR TIMES) but this is a video tribute-type thing I did for two years of Observing Baseball. Feel free to pause the video to click the links below the video that I allude to in the video itself. The reason I wanted to celebrate this way is because I know a bunch of you have joined on in the past year. Also, sorry for the length. I prioritized having everything in there over making it watchable for people with ADD. Enjoy:

1. One-year anniversary of Observing Baseball

2. Sabermetrics (the explanation)

3. 2011 Baltimore Orioles Offseason Recap and Preview

4. Survey of Adults’ Perception of Baseball

5. Case Study on Morality in Baseball

6. 4/17/11 Rangers at Yankees: Yankee Stadium

7. 6/15/11 Cardinals at Nationals: Nationals Park

8. 7/2/11 Cardinals at Rays: Tropicana Field (100th Ball game)

9. Ballhawk Fest 2011

10. 8/9/11 Red Sox at Twins (First Shutout)

11. 8/23/11 Diamondbacks at Nationals: Nationals Park (Earthquake Game)

12. Re-view of the Preview: Kansas City Royals

13. Collected Baseball knick-knacks

14. Some Statistical Blog Stuff

15. 4/7/12 Twins at Orioles: Camden Yards

16. 4/10/12 Fordham Prep at Elmira: TicketReturn.com Field

17. Blast From The Baseball Past: 8/23/08 Dodgers at Phillies: Citizens Bank Park

18. 6/22/12 Nationals at Orioles: Camden Yards

19. 7/6/12 Rockies at Nationals: Nationals Park

20. 8/20/12 Braves at Nationals: Nationals Park

21. 9/13/12 Royals at Twins: Target Field (Trevor Plouffe home run game)

And one good thing about being two days late on this entry is I get to shoutout all of the cool people who wished me a happy birthday. Here are said cool people:

The Bergino Baseball Clubhouse

A while ago, when I was writing an entry about all the stuff I had collected over the couple of years I have been ballhawking, I found a unique ball that had all (or close to all) of the MLB ballparks. This particular ball was still in the package, so I could see who made it.At the time, I was tweeting out a bunch of pictures of what I was finding while going through my collection of  “stuff”. I wanted to mention the maker if they were on twitter, so I looked them up and mentioned that they had made that ball. The owner, who also runs the twitter account, then replied and followed me.

Later, I saw the Bergino Baseball clubhouse on a slideshow made by CNBC of the “Baseball’s Greatest Attractions”. Right after I saw this, my thought was, ” This is one of the top baseball attractions in the country, and the owner follows me on twitter. How have I not already been down there? I should really go before I start going to a bunch of games.” As many of you know, my schedule really starts up next week when I got to 8 games in 9 days, so I figured this week would be as good as any to go.

After some walking and forgetting what side of Manhattan I was, I arrived at The Bergino Baseball Clubhouse:

For the record, this wasn’t a picture I took, but rather, a screen shot of a video I took of me getting lost in downtown Manhattan. Long story short, I was planning to make this a vlog entry, but my last vlog reminded me how long a process uploading a video to YouTube is, so I probably won’t upload that video.

Once I got in, a man greeted me inside. Since there was no one else in the store, I presumed it was the owner, Jay Goldberg. I introduced myself as Mateo Fischer, and by his reaction, he recognized the name. I then spent the better part of what must have been close to two hours taking pictures and having Jay explain the different items in the store to me.

Before I get started, I must say, do check the blog’s Facebook page. I will include various pictures of the store in this entry, but there are several pictures I took that I can’t segue into and aren’t in the entry.

As you enter the store, there are the following things set-up in your path:

A game-used base stool.

Some mostly generic baseballs.

Some more specific baseballs.

Of course, these baseballs were just the ones on display; here are all the baseballs that were for sale:

Yeah, and you thought *I* had a lot of baseballs.

To the left of that shelf of baseballs, was this wall:

The items there are pretty self-explanatory, right? I should note, though, that it is not an actual glove you are seeing, but rather a wooden sculpture of one.

Opposite this wall is a wall Jay described as having different pieces of “baseball art”. I use quotations because although, he and I both consider the items on the wall art, they aren’t all what most people would consider pieces of art. You know what, I’ll just include a picture so you can see for yourself:

Since I’m all out of transitions between pictures, I just want to include four more things, so here they are:

1.

This is a Bob Gibson poster from what appears to be a game at Forbes Field. What’s so special about that? Well as Jay pointed out, it’s that it is just that- a Bob Gibson poster from a game at Forbes Field. Can you imagine if that was today? There would be at least one sponsor’s logo on the poster. Heck, this poster doesn’t even have Bob Gibson’s name on it. You’re just supposed to know it’s Bob Gibson.

2.

In addition to the balls they design, Bergino also makes specialty baseballs for companies or events. For example, the middle ball is for a kid’s bar mitzvah. As you can also see, there are mini-gloves that they also make. They are designed to be business card holders, but according to Jay, people get creative with their usage, e.g. as gloves for babies.

3. Jay wants Jackie Robinson to always have the strongest presence in the clubhouse- I don’t know how many pieces relate to Jackie Robinson on the “wall of baseball art”, but there are several, and here is one of them:

Another piece I photographed in the store relating to Jackie Robinson is this one:

4.

You may recognize this painting, but regardless, the story behind it could very well be more interesting. The artist is a French woman who came over to America. She had never seen baseball before, but she went with a friend to a Mets game, and although she had no clue what was going on, she loved the energy in the stadium. She then became a baseball fan, and now, she only paints about baseball (I think I got that last part right, but I may have one of those Andy Pettitte “misremembering” incidents).

Anyway, that’s it. I bought two hats; an Oakland A’s hat and a Bergino hat, and because I had told my schedule, and he knew I would be at 4 different stadiums this week, he gave me a bag tag for free that is on my backpack as I write this entry:

I then got a picture of Jay with the store before I left:

(Notice the TV in the corner. As far as I can tell, it is turned on constantly to MLB Network.)

That was it. It was a really great experience. It is a really great store for any baseball fan contrary to what you would think for a store that really isn’t that big. Again, I urge you to check the blog’s Facebook page, which can be accessed by clicking on the link in the sidebar over there —>. There are far more pictures, and as I always do with pictures that have an entry attached to them, I add a caption for almost every picture.

The game formerly known as 6/16/12 Reds at Mets: Citi Field

Ah, welcome to Sh… excuse me, Citi Field:

I was planning to get the $10 student ticket for this game. When I got there, though, those tickets were sold out, and the cheapest tickets were $37. Neither did I have the money, nor would I have paid that price had I brought enough money.

There I found myself in the situation of being at Citi Field with nothing to do. I figured that as long as I was there, I could take a tour around the stadium, since I had never been fully around Citi Field. Also, fun fact: up to this point in the season, I had taken more trips to Citi Field when I didn’t enter the stadium than I had to actually enter the stadium and go to the game. I had only gone to one game there so far, but I had gone once to pick up my six-game ticket plan and now this time.

My tour started off by the Jackie Robinson Rotunda, which is behind home plate. I then went down the first base side of the stadium:

On this side, there was…

The team store:

The Hodges V.I.P. entrance:

and whatever this thing is:

I then had to go around a parking lot, which I suspect may have been the players’ parking lot. I have two pictures here if anyone can confirm or deny this:

After passing that, I came upon the right field gate:

I then kept walking until I passed the Bullpen Gate:

I also took a picture of the picnic area just inside the gate:

Did you notice anything in that last picture? No? Here’s a closer look:

Apparently there was some pitcher working in the bullpen. I had half a mind to throw on my Reds gear and ask one of the coaches for a ball, but I knew I would then have to count this game in my stats, and there was really no hope of me getting another ball, since I wasn’t going to enter the stadium, thus probably not being worth my while. I guess it would have been a cool story. I think I’ll have to try that sometime in the future. I don’t think anyone has gotten a ball at Citi Field before the gates open, and it would be great to be that first person.

I then walked right behind the play area in dead-center:

Behind me at this point, was the huge collection of auto-related establishments. I’ve already blogged about this, so I didn’t feel as obligated to take a picture of this, so I didn’t. I then came across something I really wasn’t expecting to find.

As I walked behind the left field portion of the stadium, I saw this right here:

I figure out that it was the employees’ entrance. As I kept walking, I saw a checkpoint where there were two security guards checking to make sure only employees were passing:

I then passed by the left field gate, which, little known fact, I have actually entered through before:

After which, I passed by the Stengel V.I.P. entrance:

Here’s the view from the Stengel gate looking towards the JRR (Jackie Robinson Rotunda):

I must say, for all the things they mess up on, the Mets are pretty solid with letting you know where you are on the outside of the stadium. First of all, there are these map things:

then they also have these directional thingys:

So yeah, I just complemented the Mets on something. Maybe the apocalypse is this year.

As I kept walking, I passed the Seaver V.I.P entrance:

and then I was back to the ticket booth that denied me a $10 ticket. Here is my poor attempt at word play:

Then I was back at the Rotunda where I had started. I do want to explain a more minute detail of Citi Field to everyone, though. Outside the Jackie Robinson Rotunda, there are these funny looking patterns on the sidewalk:

Before Citi Field opened, the Mets made it so you could buy one of the little stones within one of those patterns. The darker ones cost one price and the lighter ones cost a different, presumably higher, price. Therefore, they each have a different message on them. Here are two examples:

Oh, and just because I can, here are two signs that are useless to 80% (or more) of people, but whose function is simply to idiot-proof Citi Field. I will give no further explanation:

That was it for my tour around Citi Field. I *was* then going to hop back on the train to go to Manhattan, but I saw Garrett Meyer and Zack Hample, so I stopped to chat with them at the gate until it opened. I didn’t take any pictures for myself and this blog, but I took the opening picture in Zack’s entry of the game. After the gates opened, I actually did get on the train and an hour-and-a-half later, I was back at home.

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