17 October 2009

Seen And Heard On Priest

Last night I saw Strasburg, with a couple thousand ballfans over at Muni. My son wouldnt go. Not even the draw of a 100 mph flamethrower could assuage the lingering trauma from his last AFL outing. So I hopped the Phoenix High Speed Electrotrain to Priest, marched north past a couple corporate parks and encountered this.



You have to laugh. The AFL promotes an accessible product sans big league hassles, and the first thing you see is a ticket line bending to accomodate the curvature of the earth. They finally opened a second window, preempting unseasonable riots, and since all tix were general admission, the line actually moved pretty quickly.

My six dollar GA ticket afforded me a seat seven rows from the third base dugout, and for just $7 more - a barely cool plastic bottle of Coors Light. (I dont normally drink at games, but with the Electrotrain, anything goes! Besides, this is accessible baseball sans big league hassles! Bottoms up!)

Here's Strasburg:



He gets his body behind the ball, although not as extraordinarily well as Lincecum. I bring it up only because Strasburg throws so hard. Comes across his body a little. The first couple batters fouled off heaters, over their off field dugouts, as late as Little Leaguers. Soon however, hitters like Dback Brandon Allen, fouled both hard and soft pitches straight back (Allen walked). Strasburg went three and a third scoreless, and MLB's game report confirms the excellent results. Struck out just two, and induced several grounders including a double play.

Right now, MLB hitters would eat him up pretty good. Allen's ABs were instructive, in that he fought off a variety of offerings as if he was Ichiro, despite whiffing quite alot in the show. Most of these AFL kids were sitting on Strasburg's fastball and still couldnt do much with it, however. It's a helluva fastball. I just think major league hitters will time it, until he throws slower stuff for strikes.

Here's my last picture of Strasburg, just before two UFO's from right field abducted the prized righthander, whilst rendering my sophisticated camera equipment even more useless.



I took the electrotrain home. Well, the electrotrain and a bus. That's how it works, unless you live in the shadow of a McDonalds right on the line, or use the Park 'n' Rides, "conveniently" located closer to your destination than to your house. Waiting at the Priest / Washington station at night, a white pickup full of guys roared by, mockingly inquiring if anyone on the platform "needed a ride". We're up the road from ASU and the college hijinks made me smile.

As the pickup idled at a red light, a black man near me repeatedly challenged the offer, shouting from a respectable (ie non-threatening) distance, in the same sort of vein. The truck fell silent, until finally its lane's green arrow lit, the cue for its young passengers to lean out the windows, courageously shout "Nigger" and give us the finger as they sped off.

Unpleasant, but no one on the platform seemed too worked up about it. Forget Strasburg. The night's biggest regret is that my absent teen missed the manifest fear inherent in such racist bufoonery.

6 comments:

RMutt said...

Hope this Strasburg kid is half of what he is advertised to be. The Nats could sure use some good news. Hell, Washington could use some good news. How about 'dem Redskins!

I envy you being in Arizona. That has to be the ideal baseball location, with the AFL and Spring Training.

Michael Norton
Some Clubhouse

Diamondhacks said...

The AFL game reminded me of how spring ball used to be. Small crowd, but almost everyone was a serious fan. Good baseball conversations throughout the park.

I wouldnt expect too much from Strasburg in 2010. After that, could be big though. With the cheese, fairly small improvements should yield disproportionate results.

RMutt said...

I'm hoping Washington doesn't yield to fan pressure to bring Strasburg along too quickly, but I'm afraid that will probably happen. Patience is wearing pretty thin in D.C.

Michael Norton
Some Clubhouse

RMutt said...

BTW, you've got to check out the Dan Snyder as Hitler video I've posted on the Clubhouse 8)


Michael Norton
Some Clubhouse

Diamondhacks said...

I didnt get every reference, but that was a howl...very well edited and conceived.

NFL's ultimate line of resignation:

[Sigh] Get Jeff George on the phone

Blogger said...

Anyone else wants a FREE MC DONALD'S GIFT CARD?