When you think of classy sports, perhaps polo or cricket come to mind. Today, I can’t think of a sport with more class than baseball. Ballparks all over the league remembered Nick Adenhart with a moment of silence before their games. And last night in Anaheim, we witnessed an emotional and dignified tribute to our fallen player. Normally, it’s pretty rowdy when the Red Sox come to town. The trash-talk usually starts during your walk through the parking lot and continues to your seat which you can bet will be, in immediate proximity to a Sox fan. With so many east coast transplants (and sadly misinformed locals), we’re used to being outnumbered on our own turf when Captain Varitek and his merry band of post-season-lucky-sons-of-b’s come to town. But the mood was decidedly less rambunctious as fan of both teams filed into the Big A.
I was doing okay until they showed Jered Weaver paying his respects to Nick at the outfield wall. It was a touching moment that sent me running for the Kleenex. If you’re not familiar with Weaver, he has a pre-game ritual where he kneels behind the mound and, using his finger, writes his grandparents’ initials into the dirt. Last night he was seen writing N.A. instead. And he did Nick proud, allowing only one un-earned run in 6 and 2/3 innings. The Sox threatened in the 8th, but Scotty Shields came in and shut them down. The Angels played the game for Nick and they wanted a win. We all did. And it helped.
Today they came up short. But they certainly didn’t go quietly and, with the bases full of Angels in the 9th, it took Papelbon 10 pitches to get Kendrick out. No win, but that was some exciting baseball and I’m looking forward to some more of that tomorrow.
Baseball…good to the last drop!
While we’re all still saddened and shocked by the untimely and tragic death of Nick Adenhart, I think all Angel fans are looking forward to the tribute to him that will take place tonight before the Angels face the Red Sox.
It’s been an unusually cold and gloomy day here in Orange County and I think a dose of good ol’ baseball will help to lift the clouds in our hearts. I can only imagine how tough it will be for all Angels players to take the field, but especially Jered Weaver, who will pitch tonight. He and Nick were close, having spent time together in Salt Lake before coming up to Anaheim. I will be cheering him on and hope he has a good game, given the circumstances. A win tonight would be great. And it doesn’t hurt that it would be against Boston.
My husband was a sweetie and gave me the day off today. So, I did what any good wife would do. Clean the house? Nope. Do the laundry? Nuh uh. Clean the bird cages? Not a chance. I watched the Cubs/Brewers game.
Baseball…the pain reliever hospitals use most.
I’m having trouble finding words today. What a senseless tragedy. Nick Adenhart was a talented young man with an amazing future. And just hours after pitching 6 shut-out innings against the A’s, his life was ended by a drunk driver. I cheered him on (out loud!) in my family room last night and saw him throwing pitches any veteran pitcher would be lucky to have in their repertoire. I send my heartfelt condolences to his family and friends. I hope they’ll receive some comfort from the fan tributes that have begun to pepper the internet as we come to terms with this terrible loss. He will truly be missed.
Last night confirms why I could never be a pro football fan. I mean, how many games are there in a regular NFL season? Like 10 or 12? (I know…it’s 16. Thank you, Wikipedia!) If the Angels were, say, the Bears, then they would’ve just blown 1/16 of their season. But instead, since we’re talking MLB, it’s 1/162…a fraction I can handle.
The Angels had their first run on the board by the end of the 1st inning. It looked like a good start and with another run in the 2nd, I was starting to get cocky. Then in Anaheim, the clouds rolled in, the temperature dropped 10 degrees and a light drizzle began to fall. My husband said the Athletics were now playing in their element. Ha ha. So, that’s it for the highlights. The Angels bullpen crumbled and the A’s helped themselves to 16 hits. Oh well. Onward and upward. Nick Adenhart takes the mound tonight and I sincerely hope he can overcome the nerves that helped him give up 5 runs in 2 innings in his first major league start last May that, coincidentally, was against the A’s. I always root for the rookie.
Since I really don’t care to discuss last night’s game any further, I thought I’d mention…
What I missed during the off-season: Angel games (duh), taking the carpool transition from the south 57 to the west 91 and seeing the halo on the Big A all lit up after just another Halo victory, laughing at the Dodger reps who came into my office trying to sell me ticket packages (hello…did the 5 foot by 3 foot Angels schedule on my wall or my vast collection of bobbleheads and post-season commemorative ball caps behind my desk not give you just a little hint of where my loyalty lies??), Rex Hudler and Steve Physioc’s perfect blend of casual banter, spot-on stats and heartfelt enthusiasm and my rally monkey. (I gently woke him from hibernation just before game time Monday. But I swear I saw him cover his eyes last night.)
What I did NOT miss during the off-season: Those horrible, mind-numbingly stupid Howard’s TV commercials. Seriously, couldn’t Howard’s have spent a couple more bucks in the advertising department and hired someone who could actually write?? Now, Mike Scioscia shouldn’t waste pen and paper on an Oscar acceptance speech anytime soon but he is totally a victim of his material. Those scripts could make DeNiro look like a dork.
Remember those great Angels commercials a few seasons back, like the one where Tim Salmon and the guys are in a restaurant ordering “ribbies”? Or when Garret Anderson is playing baseball with the neighborhood kids and smacks the ball out of the county and one of the kids starts crying ’cause it was his ball? Or my favorite…Troy Percival and the other pitchers in Spanish class? Hahaha. (Oh great. Jeff Miller is SO gonna call me a racist again.) Maybe the writer of those commercials is looking for work. Howard’s probably found their marketing company on a bus bench (no, not from an ad on a bus bench, literally ON a bus bench…and most likely holding a brown paper sack with a bottle inside). The whole purpose of a commercial is to influence potential customers so I suppose they are effective. They effectively made me go to Best Buy to get my 47-incher (still the new love of my life). From now on when a Howard’s commercial airs, I’ll just have to do what I used to do when Frankie would load the bases in the 9th. Leave the room.
Baseball…the gift that keeps on giving.