“Within the ball park, time moves differently, marked by no clock except the events of the game. This is the unique, unchangeable feature of baseball and perhaps explains why this sport, for all the enormous changes it has undergone … remains somehow rustic, unviolent, and introspective. …
“Baseball’s time is seamless and invisible, a bubble within which players move at exactly the same pace and rhythms as all their predecessors.”
~ Roger Angell
Baseball keeps me close.
It keeps me close to my dad who didn’t even really like baseball, but it keeps me there nevertheless whenever I hear Vin Scully’s voice (less often now) or see a Dodger’s logo. Even though my dad’s been gone for years.
Let me tell you a story. It won’t take long.
This is Mookie.
Mookie is one of three feral cats who now live with us. He’s adorable, isn’t he?
Sweet as can be. Especially considering he was born in a barn a couple years ago to a very wild, slightly nuts feral cat, and wasn’t touched by a human until he was nearly six months old.
There aren’t a lot of pictures of my dad.
He was the family photographer. He was the one who documented his life, our lives, and the passing of time.
He had the camera. He took the photos. There weren’t many times that someone took a photo of him.
I took this one.
My dad’s photos – and he took thousands of them – were neatly sorted, by topic, and filed, along with their negatives, in big plastic boxes. Most included handwritten notes – sometimes written over the front of the photo – explaining who, or what, or when.
Tractors and wide fields of North Dakota wheat being harvested. And, pets. And, every house we ever lived in. And, flowers. And, squirrels. And, plenty of people I don’t know. And, cars.
(There are a few more photos of me, his daughter, than there are of the cars he has owned. But, it’s pretty close.)
Sure, I know I’m wearing out my welcome, but here’s one last look from our season in Virginia baseball’s blue seats.
Last post on this. Promise.
If you’re playing catch-up … here’s “Our Season In The Blue Seats” (part 1) and (part 2).
I have a college chum who is an accomplished photographer. He tried to help me understand how carefully manipulating the wheels and buttons and levers on my camera can create a beautiful photo. But, I just can’t seem to ever get it right, especially when I’m trying to shoot through — and wash out — the protective netting at a game while actually also watching the game.
So, my pictures are frustratingly not right most of the time. Which is ok, because if people like me could take a great photo with ease, all the good photographers in the world would be out of work. Which is to say, I’m keeping all the professional sports photographers in business, which makes me a job creator. You’re welcome.
I took a lot of pictures while we watched Virginia baseball from the coveted blue seats this season. A lot.
These were all shot through the protective netting. They are my favorites.
Virginia Pitcher Teddy Paisley.
I’ve been waiting all season to tell you about Teddy Paisley.
I’m the person you meet at a party who wants to show you a picture on her phone and then as she’s sweeping through hundreds of them she stops to show you a bunch of unrelated ones that have made her nostalgic (well, as nostalgic as a picture from 2013 can make one). She ultimately forgets the one she was looking for in the first place, which is ok, because one more tiny picture from last summer’s family reunion filled with people you don’t know is going to end the friendship.
Just a few more pics from our season in baseball’s blue seats at the University of Virginia. I promise it won’t take long.
(What? You missed ‘Part One’? Poor dear. Start here.)
Today’s theme – ACTION!
My camera doesn’t catch much action at the game. Blame the camera. (All of these photos were shot through the protective netting.)
Sure, I missed catcher Caleb Knight’s homerun swing, but I did get Virginia’s celebration in a game versus Pittsburgh.
Editor/Husband broke his leg on New Year’s Day.
You might think that this was a terrible thing and it was. Not for me, of course, but for him. It was a lousy thing to happen.
But, look at the bright side.
His bum leg wasn’t ready for steep steps. And, our season tickets for University of Virginia baseball are out in the bleachers and up some very steep steps. We had to figure this out. Because I don’t care whose leg is broken, we’re not missing baseball.
So before nearly every home game this season I stood in line at the ticket window – sometimes for nearly an hour – in the hopes of upgrading that day’s tickets to closer-in seats that would be an easier commute for Limpy.
Those close-in seats are the ones that fans like us, with our bleacher tickets, dream about.
The blue seats.
Real seats with sturdy backs, not the long backless benches that line the rest of the park. When you’re in the blue seats you can put your bottle of water beside your feet and not worry that someone will accidentally kick it into the opening in the bleacher floor where it will disappear into the abyss.
I wish I had a photo of Walter “Mother” Watson of the Cincinnati Red Stockings to show you, it being “Mother’s Day” weekend and all.
I know he was a pitcher. A three-game cup-of-coffee guy. But, righty? Lefty? No clue.
Over two games, just 14 innings, in May of 1887, the Red Stockings put Mother Watson on the mound.
Watson gave up 18 runs in those two games though, to his credit, only 9 of them were earned.
He played just one more game for the Reds, when they stuck him out in left field.
This week has not been the best for The Baseball Bloggess.
A flat tire on Tuesday resulted in four new tires on Wednesday. (Followed by a brand new flat in one of the brand new tires just a few hours ago. That’s not the way these things are supposed to work, you know.)
On August 11, 2013, Arizona Diamondbacks outfielder Cody Ross fell while running to first. It was a routine ground out, but his spike caught in the dirt at a weird angle and he stumbled. Awkwardly. Then, he tumbled. He had dislocated and broken his hip.
It’s believed that Ross was the first – and only – major league player to ever break a hip while running the bases.
It was, they said, a freak injury.
Editor/Husband’s doctors and nurses assured him last week that he is the first – and only – person to ever break a hip while meditating. (They all got quite a chuckle out of that.)
It was, they said, a freak injury.
On May 25, 2011, in San Francisco, Florida Marlins outfielder Scott Cousins collided with Giants catcher Buster Posey in a play at the plate. Posey’s leg was broken. He was out for the rest of the season.
(You can watch it here, though I wouldn’t recommend it.)
On January 1, 2017, in Orange, Virginia, in what I think was some sort of weird performance art recreation, Editor/Husband played the role of Buster Posey. Scott Cousins was played by my Yoga Studio floor.
For those of you who were so quick to believe that 2017 couldn’t be suckier than 2016 … you are wrong.
Editor/Husband fell and “bustered” his leg on New Year’s Day.
That is, he fractured the neck of his femur which is the fancy pants way to say, he broke his hip. (But having a broken hip sounds like something a frail grandma would do, so we’re going with broken leg which sounds more “Posey-an.”)
Well, not quite. But, close enough.