Found out last minute there’d be an opportunity to get down on the field for batting practice at Dodger Stadium this past Saturday night. We got to the stadium very early and made our contact at the 1000 Elysian Park entrance near will-call where a cool dude and Pepperdine alum took us down to field level. My father and I each scored a VIP pass and in true surreal fashion, we just sauntered onto the field and took a nice spot behind the backstop towards the 3rd base side.
I have been on the field once before, in the outfield. From there, it was intimidating, like a Roman coliseum. Staring in from centerfield, you get the sense of a million eyes watching you from the stacked decks behind the batter’s box. From home plate, where we stood today, there was a feeling that this was just a baseball diamond, the exact kind of place we’d spent so much time in the past. The glaring difference, of course, was how pristine the grass was. The Bermuda Blue sod was unbelievable. You could carpet your house with it. It was fluffy and only an inch tall at most. Despite being something of an adult, I had wild impulses to flop around on the ground like a kid and get stains on my pants. I pinched out some of the grass, a little tuft nestled up to the burnt orange dirt lining the stands, and put it in my wallet. I want to bring this view with me everywhere I go.
Got a chance to see a bunch of the guys up close. Casey Blake, Blake DeWitt, Ramon Castro and Juan Pierre (who I would have apologized to in person if he came closer). Shook hands with James Loney, who made me feel pretty short, and told him to have a good game. Wish I’d checked the lineup card; he wasn’t starting.
Then the big moment came. Andre Ethier rolled on by. I wanted to get in his face about he and his agent Nez Balelo ignoring my demand to food blog about Roscoes together. I wanted to explain to him that I was not, in fact, a stalker and that just because I want to eat chicken and waffles with him and write about the experience does not, in fact, make me crazy.
Then I realized trying to explain that to him during batting practice in ten seconds would probably not help prove I was not crazy or a stalker. So I gave him a nod, which was reciprocated. He’ll find out sooner or later.
Later, we made moves and hit up a suite (I won’t say who’s) and took in the last few innings away from our season seats. They had three brands of whiskey and cans of Newcastle. Dodger Stadium FTW!
We avoided losing 3 in a row for the first time all year and Clayton Kershaw was the ultimate warrior out there. He’s blossoming into the emerging ace we all hoped he would become.
In the meantime, I’ll figure out how to breach the subject with Andre. He will know about the plan and I will put him to the test. That is my committment to you all.