03 May 2008

This Week's Hacks

Endured Friday's Chase Field fireworks, although innately obnoxious Met fans were less audible than usual, apparently taking a welcome cue from their heroes' September gag. Jose Reyes was player of the game, but David Wright's all out sprint setting up his diving, back to the plate, over the shoulder grab in medium left was breathtaking. There's no way Mark Reynolds even touches that ball. No way.

The missus was similarly impressed with Derrick Hall's postgame fireworks, proclaiming them "almost as good as Disneyland". Most of the 35.6K stayed for the pyrotechnics, which earned hearty applause and took some sting out of Micah's limp and limping performance.

Finally took a stroll up, up, up to Derrick's "Sandlot In The Sky" and I've done a 180 on this. Initially, I thought the location was kind of a slap in the face, but it's actually pretty cute up there. The sandlot might be a bit smaller than the previous kid's area behind the batter's eye, but they've used space wisely and added a couple nice touches beyond the ubiquitous batting cage and wiffleball field. The concourse approach to this fun zone is well conceived, featuring real wood planks on the otherwise sterile concourse walls, evoking homemade fencing, and a gigantic, Mao-sized poster of a benevolent Webby overlooking the sandlot. Stadium organist Bobby Freeman is completely out in the open and accessible - not in a booth - so you can walk right up to him, ask questions and watch his fingers get 70 thousand hands clapping. That's really a great idea, something a kid might recall about "the good old days" of Chase Field thirty years from now, and distinguishes Chase from other ballparks.

The Dodgers, now just 3 games out, have fully recovered from their Chinese fishing expedition, reeling off seven in a row. Colorado has apparently yet to recover from their trips - to the World Series and jeweler's - the defending NL champs start May a startling 9 back.

Only the Dbacks and Angels can boast seven consecutive winning (.500 or above) months, begging the question whether such consistency reflects commonalities or even methodical, broad based formulas for success.

The Phoenix Suns would be better off without pleasantly deflective coach, Mike D'Antoni. Despite famously entertaining regular season runs, teams built around a pair of defensive ciphers have zero chance at an NBA title.

Like Kellia, I'll be giving away a free copy of the 2001 World Series Collector's Edition DVD set next week. Doubt if a writing contest will be involved, but we'll have some fun with it. Any distribution contests, schemes or japes are welcome.


PAUL said...

"Innately" is kind of offensive to the lot of us. Don't be cranky because the Mets show up in Phoenix and trash the place no matter what kind of dominant team Josh Byrnes et al, put together.

Matt said...

I suppose you're right. If you ever visit Chase Field, I'll change "innately" to "overwhelmingly" ;- )

Glynnjamin said...

You know, you really can't argue with that space being used as the sandlot. It is a thousand times better than the old smoking section that it used to be. Thank god that is gone.