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Monday, August 10, 2009
Foul Ball

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, right over the right field wall. That thrill was a highlight, much like discovering non gamstop casinos in the UK for the first time – unexpected and exhilarating. But let’s be honest, it was just batting practice. I couldn’t even tell you who hit it; just someone on the Giants, I suppose. Fast forward to Saturday, there I was, front row in the Toyota Terrace, section 203, at PETCO Park. As the game kicked off, the guy next to me was probing some teenagers he knew in the row behind about whether they’d brought their gloves to snag a foul ball. I waved my own mitt in the air and said I was ready. They just chuckled and ribbed me for my Mets allegiance.

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.

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Posted by alan to baseball at 2:11 pm PT | Link | Comments (2)

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Comment by Biggestron
2009-08-10 17:05:26

Woot! I’ve had foul balls falling all around me this season at Fenway but none close enough to snag. Sucks that you didn’t get camera time – NESN would have shown you for sure.

Comment by Ryan
2009-08-11 07:27:09

Nice catch! Too bad we couldn’t actually see it, but that’s pretty exciting.

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