June 25, 2009

Minor League Fun

This past Friday, my dad, Jay & I decided head out to the ball park to watch our Double A Chicago Cubs affiliate - the Tennessee Smokies take on the Carolina Mudcats. This year, Hall of Famer Ryne Sandberg is the manager of the team. According to Jay & Wikipeidia, he was an amazing player in his day.

My dad got his autograph earlier in the season (he's friends with a season ticket holder, so he goes to a lot of games) and said that he typically available for autographs before the game.

We decided to meet at 6:15 to make sure we got there early enough. I cut my long run (4.6 miles) short (down to 3 miles) Friday afternoon so that I could make it on time. When I left the gym I had a missed call from my dad and from Jay. Jay was still working and couldn't get away till closer to 7 o'clock (first pitch was 7:15).

I suppose I should be proud that my husband has such a strong work ethic he'll sacrifice getting the autograph of a childhood hero in order to support his family. Honestly though I was more annoyed that I had cut my run short for nothing.

Jay finally met up with my dad and I around 7:15, by that time the game was already underway. We listened to it on the radio as we hustled to the stadium, but weren't hopeful. The Smokies were already down 4 runs in the first half of the first inning.

It wasn't looking pretty. We finally got to our seats behind home plate (it pays to know people) and settled in.

Turns out, the Smokies are pretty good at scoring runs themselves, and they quickly tied up the score. Going into the 9th innning, the score was still tied. Bottom of the 9th, runners on 2nd and 3rd, the Smokies put in a pinch hitter with a batting average of 0.083. Poor thing, I thought. Why did they put him in?

Turns out the reason that his batting average sucks is that he's pretty good at hitting a sacrifice fly. He hit the ball into the outfield, where it was promptly caught. The Smokies player on 3rd base had no problem trotting in for the winning run.

Instead of swarming the guy that got the winning run, the entire team surrounds the batter. He's the hero of the night after all.

But the poor thing still has a batting average of 0.083 - or worse now!

A gorgeous round of fireworks (that follow every Friday night home game) end the night on a great note.

Jay took a ton of pictures of the game, but most of them were just following Ryne Sandberg around the field. So he doesn't get arrested for being a stalker, I'll just post one of the pictures.


  1. I prefer the minor league games over the pros. Great shot behind home plate.

  2. Sounds like a great night! Sorry you didn't get the autograph but you got some great pictures.

  3. Haha, love that last line. Baseball is so much fun -- glad y'all had a great time!

  4. I love minor league games! And I love spring training. Last year for youth baseball we picked minor league team names one of them was the Mudcats. My favorite was the Lugnuts. The parents shirts on the back said GO NUTS!

  5. How FUN! I loooove baseball/ And I definitely know who Ryne Sanderg is, used to watch him and the Cubbies!

  6. i LOVED ryne sandberg!!! i'm a huge baseball fan, you guys are so lucky you get to see him! sounds like a great time, we have a minor league team around the corner from my house that plays at the phillies spring training stadium and it's supposed to be a lot of fun, we gotta try it out.

  7. Sounds like you had a blast!! I'd rather watch football though, lol!


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