Last night I popped my baseball cherry at my first Major League Baseball game and it was FUN with a capital F.
Unlike our local wooden spoon ice hockey team The Toronto Maple Leafs (finished a big fat last in the NHL this year), the local MLB (Major League Baseball) team The Toronto Blue Jays nicknamed the “jays” are far from lemons. The jays have won 2 world series championships in 1992 and 1993 and last year made it to the playoffs only then losing out to the Kansas City Royals who went on to defeat the New York Mets and taking out the World Series Championship.
Following on from a successful year last year the “jays” and the supporters have started the season on a high. They are also the only Canadian team in the MLB competition so have a huge fan base, the entire stadium was a sea of blue, I didn’t see a single Yankee’s fan in the crowd.
Everyman and his dog were wearing a blue jays baseball style top and blue jays cap with the exception of The Canadian and myself. Not one to miss a shopping opportunity we ventured into the merchandise store and my senses went into overdrive especially in the women’s section, so much bedazzled, glitter and rhinestones. After recovering from all the glitz I then slipped into sticker shock so after purchasing the 8-year-old a blue jays cap we hightailed it out of the store so we didn’t need to sell a kidney to buy anything else.
That was until we went to purchase snacks and drinks. The snacks on offer at the Baseball put the Ice Hockey snacks to shame. Superior stadium food and with it superior prices. At this point, I decided it was best I not even look at prices I could always go back to selling a kidney tomorrow.
The concession stands even looked fancy …
And who doesn’t love a carvery?
We got the slow cooked smoky beef brisket nachos, don’t let looks deceive you, it was actually really delicious.
Beers got purchased and we found our seats … early … like very early … so early in fact that they had not finished preparing the diamond.
I have blogged previously about how The Canadian doesn’t like to arrive at things early, that’s because he freakin LOVES to arrive early. It’s his thing (and candy crush). This time was it a fear of getting stuck in traffic? Trying to find a parking spot? Um no, the Baseball stadium entrance is at the end of our street and is a 5-minute walk from home. It is so close that at one point when in line to use the restroom I wondered if it would be quicker for me to leave, use the one at home and then come back.
And YES, I did just call it a restroom and not a toilet because I’m trying to break my habit, I’m getting sick of people looking at me like I have 2 heads if I ask them where the toilet is in a restaurant.
The rest of the crowd arrived and so began the national anthems. Personally, I love a national anthem, any country’s, I’m not fussy. They stir something inside me, I do believe it something called emotions. The Canadian and American anthems are some of the finest. The 8-year-old started singing the Canadian anthem with such gusto that I may or may not have suddenly got something in my eye.
The game started
Then it was time for more snacks. The extent of my knowledge about baseball is courtesy of Rosie O’Donnell and Madonna in A league of their own. When I think baseball snacks peanuts, popcorn, pretzels, hot dogs and of course beer come to mind. Prior to the game, The Canadian had sent me a link to check out the food options available at the arena. Something stood out like dogs nuts and sounded so vile we just had to give it a try –
The chicken and waffles corn dog …
It was truly one of the most disgusting things I have ever eaten in my life, after one bite it was passed over to The 8-year-old who devoured it. Clearly 8-year-olds are the chicken and waffle corn dogs target market.
We finished off with a Foot long grilled smoked sausage hot dog and surprisingly for mystery meat, it was full of flavour.
Bellies full, I focused on the game and noticed a few odd things happening in the dug out.
Baseball players are not the only ones wearing the uniform, the coaches, managers, water boys, you name it, they are all wearing a baseball uniform. It’s weird!!! It was confusing, I couldn’t work out who the actual players are but then I started to notice something that made the players stand out … rituals … strange and weird behaviour patterns.
Prior to pitching some of the players would repeat the same pattern before throwing the ball for example they might spit on the ball, wipe the ball three times, then spit on the ends of their fingers, wipe the spit on the peak of their cap and then repeat, sometimes two or three times and then throw the ball. Many of the players had the same weird rituals just in a different pattern. Batters also had their own behaviours, some wiping their feet in a certain pattern a certain amount of times on the base. Both batters and pitchers doing signs of the cross, doing it again, and again and then ending it with a spit-wipe on the rim of their cap. The cap rim spit was a very popular and with my weak constitution making me want to throw up. I will never be a collector of baseball memorabilia for this reason. GERMS
The catcher behind the batter looked as though he couldn’t stop scratching his balls.
Pants too tight? Woollen underpants?
No, I’m told the catcher flicking his fingers in front of his nuts (as the 8 year old calls them) is sending a message in code to the pitcher about the play.
It was getting hard to work out if a player was using a code for the other players or if he just had a mild case of Asperger’s syndrome.
A Rod – Alex Rodriguez was playing for the Yankee’s and got the biggest boo every time he stepped up. I’m told by Rainman his career earnings are $395 million to date. It’s so much coin and I was getting an understanding for the sky high prices of baseball merchandise.
The game was fast and the 8-year-old experienced his first Mexican wave.
Due to the rather brisk 4 degree evening, the roof of the stadium was closed however we look forward to going back for another game on a sunny summers day.
One thing I loved about the stadium is it has the world’s only hotel located inside a major league sports and entertainment complex. The Renaissance Hotel is built into the sports stadium with rooms surrounding the big screen and score boards.
Word on the street is that over the years many a couple have been seen having sex in the hotel windows while the game is being played in full view of fans and players. It’s kind of like a baseball mile high club.
On occasion couples have been caught off guard having turned off the lights in the room but the stadium providing enough lighting for viewers pleasure. Close those curtains people!
My only gripe about the stadium (apart from the prices) would be the size of the seats, they are tiny and you are crammed in like sardines. It’s not like the crowd was munching on carrot sticks either, wider seats would help with nacho and hot dog diet ass spread.
Blue Jay’s kicked the Yankees butts 4 to 2
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