Dispatches, thoughts, and miscellanea from writer Jon Konrath

Rockies-Brewers, game 1

Last night was the first home game in a series against the Brewers. Lazy as always, so here’s the bullet list:

  • I felt slightly conflicted about the game when I bought tickets, because aside from the Rockies, I think the Brewers are my second-favorite team. And I now have a certain connection to Milwaukee, they have a great park, they are also somewhat of an underdog, and they have been doing well this year.
  • The Brewers came off a brutal loss to the Phillies that burned through their entire bullpen, so their pitching was hurt. But, they have a hard-hitting offense, and at 5280 feet, that means home runs.
  • No sausage race. No Bernie Brewer. No bratwurst, other than the crappy ones they sell at Coors Field. So that removes about 80% of the Brewers experience, unfortunately.
  • It rained before the game, and looked pretty dreary outside, so I was fearful of even going. It was also much cooler than when I got rained on at the Phillies game, which would make it even worse. But it kept dry for the most part, aside from a sprinkle or two.
  • There were only about 30,000 people there, which is probably the lowest attendance I’ve seen for a night game. Part of that was probably the rain, though.
  • Every once in a while, I will smell a hot dog that someone else has, and think “damn, I need to get one too”, and when I do, it totally sucks. This happens pretty much every time I buy a hot dog at a baseball game. I will never learn.
  • I was in section 332, the first row of the second part of the section. So I had a railing right in front of me, and I had to sit up to see over it. Otherwise, not bad seats.
  • I bought a set of 10×50 binoculars, and those made things interesting. I didn’t mess with them during the game a lot, except to see who was warming up in the bullpen. But before the game, it was a good way to look into the dugout and how it was set up, and to see the players warming up. Like I saw Matsui’s translator with him on the field before he got started.
  • Josh Fogg was the starting pitcher, and wasn’t throwing down major strikeouts, but he really had a way to keep the hits on the ground and very fieldable, which pretty much shut down the Brewers.
  • Prince Fielder and Ryan Braun each had single homers, and both were pretty impressive. Fielder’s went into one of the exit ramps in right field, and this horde of people ran down the ramp, as it bounced and bounced away, which was funny to watch.
  • In the first inning, Matsui almost hit a homer (hit right below the rail, then bounced out), and then Brad Hawpe hit a three-run homer. At this point, half the people there thought the game was over.
  • In the second, Matt Holliday hit a two-run homer, and most of the people there thought the game was over.
  • Nobody scored after Braun’s homer for the rest of the game, and it became one of those “who’s going to fuck up defensively and let the other team score nine runs” games, but it kept pretty tight.
  • This Harley dealership does this stupid big-screen computer animated game with three pigs on bikes and you have to guess which one is going to win, and I swear at least half of the Brewers players were intently watching it to see which one would win.
  • The “guess who said the quote” thing between innings was a Bob Eucker quote, and after they showed the answer, they showed a shot of Bob in the box, and that got more applause than anything else that night.
  • The Rockies announcer always announces Matt Holliday’s name “Matt Hall-iday!” for some reason, and it always confused the fuck out of me because of Bill Hall of the Brewers, and I wondered what happened if they were both in one game. But it turns out the Brewers were keeping Hall out to give him some rest. He almost came in to pinch hit for Vargas, and was on deck, but it never happened.
  • Fogg continued to pitch well all night, and had a very low pitch count. Vargas, not so much – I think he had one of the highest pitch counts of his career. He also had a fielding fuckup where someone hit a ball right at him, and he tried to catch it with his pitching hand, and it hit and went on to the shortstop. So he fucked the play, and his hand probably smarted a bit.
  • In the 9th, it got really edgy. Then Troy Tulowitski had two majorly stupid errors. One, he pitched to first, but like twenty feet too high. The other, he tried to get to first instead of second on a double play and fucked it up. I am becoming more of a fan of his, because usually his fielding is excellent, but man he fucked up that inning.
  • Final score: 6-2. Cubs fans rejoice, we cut down their lead for you.

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