Toronto Blue Jays 6 – Minnesota Twins 4
Target Field – Minneapolis, MN
May 29, 2015
Beautiful Thursday, beautiful Saturday… terrible Friday. When you live in Minnesota, you come to expect these things – heck, it’s even a badge of honor, of sorts. We joke that it can be 80+ one day and snow the others, and that HAS happened. however, this weather interruption was not nearly as cool, it only offered rather chilly temps and rain that turned into a non-stop drizzle. It was just enough to make things miserable for everyone – especially ballhawks, since BP was CANCELED.
After waiting at the gates (under shelter from the rain) with Alex (@everythingtwins on Instagram) we made our way into the ghost-town.
I knew that the only way that there would be any balls (as there were no longer any players on the field) would be the small hope that a ball was left over from any potential warm-ups. I saw cleat marks in the dirt on the warning-track in foul territory and kept my eyes peeled. That’s when I saw this ball sitting in a cup-holder. Excellent! No matter what, I would not be shut out, even if it would be rescheduled to a date I could not return to.
A while back (last year?) I made a sign, inspired by a famous line from Star Wars, by Admiral Ackbar. I spun the line “It’s a trap!” into…
How many of you honestly would have gotten this? Because no one seemed to understand or appreciate how awesome this was. I had another sign for today, but that will remain a secret until it becomes relevant.
I fully endorse the campaign that Paul (APieceOfTheGame) Kom has going on: #VoteDomBB. Even without his help today (with this and ball #3) I would vote until my fingers bled. We used to have bumper-stickers in MN that said “My governor can beat up your governor” because we elected Jesse Ventura. We need to make a new one that says “My Bat Boy can out friendly your Bat Boy.” He is a straight-up pro: from toss-ups to in-game management to dealing with hecklers (there were hecklers tonight) he can do it all… and still look like he is happy and nothing bothers him. PRO!
Here’s where things get weird…
Remember how I said I made a sign for this game? Guess what it was about…
And so it got the attention of both Trevor Plouffe and FSN (Fox Sports North – for those not in the Minneapolis-St. Paul area). Marney Gellner, FSN pre-game host and interviewer extraordinaire, first saw it and told me to expect a quick chat during the 5th inning. Excellent… but in the meantime…
Then Trevor Plouffe saw it, went back in the clubhouse and came out with a blonde bat (he swings only a black one, period) and says, “Sorry, it’s not mine.”
I’m still pumped and amazed to be able to add something to the Baseball-cave. “OK…”
I take it, turn the barrel and see that it is a Rawlings with the name… JOE MAUER on the barrel. I’m speechless and don;t know if I actually was able to say thank you the number of times I thought it, but I hope I was able to convey it at least once (I know I was able to after the game).
He came back a little later, before the game started, and said to me, “I stole it, so don’t say anything.” (So I am entrusting you, dear reader, with your silence. Do NOT tell your best friend, Joe Mauer, about this transaction.)
I am grateful to have this, amazed, and potentially have a Hall of Famer’s bat. How cool is that?! But honestly, Trevor is more the hall of famer in my personal records book. I will keep all of these treasures and display them proudly, but I’m not going to lie, I think the first bat that he gave me is still the most special.
Now fast forward to inning number five, still sitting on two baseballs for the night, but also a Joe Mauer bat (talk about sitting/walking in fear… I don’t want to ruin this thing, nor do I want someone else to take it, so I am nervous to say the least). Marney finds me at the end of the fourth and preps me with one of the questions she has for me (focusing on the “#VotePlouffe” sign)and tells me just to “adlib the rest”.
I give my interview, slip in some quick remarks, start to worry about my words being twisted (I mentioned the term “hardcore” and then had to think of something that was “less than hardcore” without going into “softcore” for fear of it sounding like I’m alluding to porn).. But in the end I got to spread the “Vote Plouffe” campaign, get circled by a MLB Hall of Famer (Bert Blyleven), and scored $100 in lottery tickets!
(PS: I do not get the tickets until later, since they only have props. But I will do my best to add my “winnings” to this post later.)
With the night coming to a close, here is the last ball that came in the 8th inning. It was a pitch fouled into the dirt to Brian Dozier from Mark Buehrle. When I look at this ball compared to the one that came straight from the ball bag (#2), it is amazing how much of the Lena Blackburne mud came off during the rain; this for a ball that lasted less than one batter and only during the lightest of mists.
The night finished with fireworks, which I am still not a huge fan of. The Twins do it every Friday night game (loses its feeling of being “special”) and the shows themselves are only margin at best, due to laws for downtown Minneapolis fireworks. maybe I just got spoiled in Denver, who knows.
…And a close-up of the bat…:
- Dominique – #VoteDomBB
- Trevor Plouffe – #VotePlouffe
- Joe Mauer (as long as you do not punish Trevor)
- The Easter Bunny
- FSN/Marney Gellner
- Evelyn (she made the sign)
- Alex – for the company at the gate. Don;t worry, you’ll get plenty of balls when there isn’t a near-rain-out.