Monday, August 10, 2009
I went to see the Mets play in San Diego on Saturday, a 3-1 loss dropping my season record to 2-8. Traffic on the way down was hell, I had just lost a bunch of money playing poker, and was in a pretty bad mood when I got there. Alex Cora, the second batter of the game, hit a home run to put the Mets up 1-0. That helped. Then, in the third inning, David Wright fouled a ball back that cheered me right up. Those of you who follow me on Twitter were the first to know…
Earlier this year, I caught a batting practice home run in San Francisco, out over the right field wall. That was fun, but it was batting practice. I’m not even sure who hit it. Someone on the Giants. Saturday, I was sitting in the front row of the Toyota Terrace, section 203, at PETCO Park. At the start of the game, the guy sitting next to me was asking some teenagers he knew sitting behind us if they brought their gloves for a foul ball. I held mine up, and said I was ready. They made some comment about me being a Mets fan.
The ball came back off the bat fast. I jumped out of my seat, reached up as high as I could, and it hit right in the pocket of my glove. The next minute or so was a blur. I sent off a tweet, a few text messages, some messages to Facebook. Took a picture of the ball. Missed Wright, whose jersey I was wearing, striking out to end the at bat. But at that moment, I didn’t care. I’ve been going to games for a long time, and always bring my glove. This was the first time I’d ever caught a ball during a game. A few times I’ve gotten balls that outfielders threw into the stands after warming up between innings, and once after catching the third out. That’s just not the same.
My next thought was wondering if I got on TV. When I got back to a computer, I checked both the Mets and Padres archived games on MLB.tv. Sadly, the camera stayed on Wright at the plate. I did notice something I completely missed at the game, though: I got a nice cheer from the crowd for my catch. I spent yesterday trying to figure out how to save that clip. A little hacking around with mlbviewer and mplayer, and I was able to do so.
So I now have a batting practice home run, and a foul ball from a game. Next step: catching a game home run.