May 13th, 2012

5-13-12 (vs. Chicago Cubs)

Today is Mother’s Day, and I spent it with my mom (Sue) at Miller Park. When I got home I went and found a picture of us when I was just a little guy. The picture was dated July 4th, 1988. I noticed that my two sisters wanted to be in the picture as well, and you can see their heads in the lower left hand corner.

We left for the game at 11:00, and made a pit stop at Jimmy John’s to get a sub for the game. This idea later backfired as I was eating my sub in the first inning. One of the Cubs fouled a pitch back my way and I wasn’t prepared. It was across the aisle, but there wasn’t anyone in the row where the ball landed, it would’ve been an easy catch. I had told someone that I expected to catch one by the 20th home game. Today was the 18th, and I still haven’t caught one, there have been a bunch of close calls, but no luck.

We got to the Cooooooooooooper parking lot at 12:30, and decided to try and get the game number picture taken before the game. The line to get into Miller Park was quite long, because it was somewhat close to first pitch, and it was a sellout for the Yovani Gallardo bobblehead. We opened the boxes and saw that one of them was the retro version (NICE!), but didn’t take them all the way out to inspect. When we got home I took them out, and to my surprise one of them displayed Gallardo in a post-dismemberment fashion. I should’ve checked them right away, and then asked for a replacement, but we were in a hurry. I’m hoping I can exchange it during the next home-stand, but there’s no guarantee that they’ll believe me. I’m a (somewhat) honest person, but there are probably people who accidentally break it, and then come back and claim it was like that when they got it. This was such a clean “break”, that if it came with the arm loose in the box I would’ve probably just glued it back on myself.

Once inside, we headed for section 438, after today I’ll only need two more game number pictures from the upper deck. After that it’s down to the loge level.

As you can see in the picture above, the two panels that would normally be tucked above the stationary one are partially extended. They do this to eliminate the roof-line-shadow from splitting the mound and the batter’s box. It makes it more difficult for the batters, because the pitch will come from the sunlight, and at the halfway point enter the shadows, making it tough to pick-up. They didn’t always do this, and Ben Sheets (a former Brewers pitcher), may have benefited from it during his 18 strikeout performance in May of 2004. The roof-line-shadow would only split the mound and batters box for part of the game, but I guess they want to keep it consistent for the entire game.

After getting the picture taken we went down to our seats, after stopping to say “YOOOOOOO!!!” to the ice man. He hangs out selling beer above section 215 before most games, so if you want to see who I keep referring to, go say hi. At some point I’ll get my picture taken with him, but I keep forgetting. When we made it to our seats I had a nearby fan take a picture of my mom and I. I’ve gotten a little bit bigger than the first picture of this entry.

Bernie Brewer and his mom were up in Bernie’s dugout throughout the game, and I got a picture of them shortly after they finished dancing to Roll Out the Barrel. Bernie’s mom had a cane and was hobbling around up there. I think the cane was just part of the act, but I can’t say for sure.

On Mother’s Day the MLB temporarily allows the use of pink bats to help raise awareness for breast cancer and the Susan G. Komen for the Cure organization. For some reason, none of the Brewers decided to use a pink bat. Some of the Cubs did, and the picture below shows Starlin Castro at the plate using one and Bryan LaHair in the on deck circle with one as well. Bill Hall, a former Brewer, hit a walk-off home run using a pink bat on Mother’s Day back in 2006, with his mother in the stands. The bat went to auction and Mark Attanosia (the Brewers owner) won the bat with a $25,000 bid, and gave the bat to Hall’s mother. The home run provided a great moment, and Attanasio made it last with the very kind gesture.

Nyjer Morgan, who didn’t get the start, was sporting pink arm bands and some pink cleats. He did wind up making an appearance in the ninth inning as a pinch hitter.

The game itself was close early, but the Cubs blew it open in the later innings. It was tied at two a piece going into the top of the seventh inning, but the Cubs scored 1, 2, and 3 runs in the 7th, 8th, and 9th innings, respectively. Final Score: Cubs 8 – Brewers 2. I would elaborate further, but there really wasn’t much excitement. The first Brewers run scored on a sacrifice fly, and the second on an infield single by Taylor Green, who had both RBIs for the Crew.

After getting back to town, we decided to hit up Frostie Freeze, Fort Atkinson’s answer to any soft serve ice cream establishment on planet earth. I may be a little biased, but not much. It opened in 1983 and has been providing Fort Atkinson with ice cream and other cold treats for almost three decades now. It’s open during the Spring and Summer months, and if you’re ever in town I suggest you make a visit. The first picture is of the exterior of Frostie Freeze, which is located on Madison Avenue, just across the street from Vos Sentry Foods. The second picture is what I ordered; an Oreo-peanut butter cup Candy Freeze. At $2.50 it’s a steal.

My flight from Milwaukee to New York (LaGuardia), leaves at 7:14 am tomorrow morning, and I’m leaving the house at 3:45 am. I just checked the weather, and the forecast for Monday and Tuesday is looking grim. Monday calls for “showers” (50% chance of rain), and Tuesday calls for “rain” (70%). I’m hoping that it somehow misses us, but it’s not looking too good. I don’t know when games could be made up, and the Brewers are only making the one scheduled visit to NYC this year. A one game (or two game) makeup date is possible, but unlikely. If both teams are way back in the standings towards the end of the season, they could just not play the games. It’s happened before, and the season could end for both teams with only 160 or 161 games played. I know it’s really early, but I always imagine the worst case scenario and then am pleasantly surprised when things don’t go nearly as bad as I thought they might.

The next time you hear from me it should be after a COMPLETED game against the Mets, late Monday night.

Personal Stats:


Time inside Miller Park: 3 hours 52 minutes
Time on Miller Park grounds: 4 hours 14 minutes
Driving miles: 123.3
Sausages: 0
Pitches Missed: 0 (My first perfect series!!!)
Percentage of pitches seen: 100% (315/315)
Current streak of pitches seen: 1,204 (A new personal record)


Time inside stadiums: 140 hours 2 minutes
Time on stadium grounds: 166 hours 55 minutes
Miles driven: 2,817.1
Miles riding in car but not driving: 674.7
Public Transit miles: 182
Flight Miles: 5,359
Total distance traveled: 8,796.8 miles
Sausages: 23 (8 Polish, 6 Hot Dogs, 3 Bratwurst, 2 Italian, Cheddarwurst, Bison Dog, Corndog, Chicken Apple Sausage)
Pitches missed: 24
Longest streak of pitches seen: 1,204 (5/9 – present)
Percentage of pitches seen: 99.76% (10,076/10,100)
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