|Michael Abrams, Brian Cashman, Rich Zimmerman & I|
I decided to take a walk out to the center field area where the best food selection is. I saw the line for Shake Shack was extremely long as usual so I ruled that out. I went next door to Blue Smoke where nobody was on line. I got their Kansas City spare ribs and fries. It was a smart choice as those ribs are to die for. After I finished eating, I went up to my usual perch in section 516 where I met up with the King, Vincent Ascanio, Bryan Gilligan and Charlie O'Reilly.
As for the game we saw, we had a marquee match up between Cliff Lee of the Phillies who's pitched well but his record doesn't indicate it and R.A. Dickey, possible Cy Young Award winner for the Mets.
The Phillies got a run early in the first inning off Dickey to lead 1-0. Jimmy Rollins lead off and strikeout but he got to first base on a passed ball. He went to second on a throwing error by Dickey who tried to pick him off. He went to third on a ground ball out and he scored on a sacrifice fly. That's a perfect example of playing the game of baseball the right way. The Phillies turned a negative into a positive by hustling and making things happen. As a result, it set the tone as Cliff Lee hurled eight beautiful innings allowing just one run. He walked one and he struck out ten as the Phillies got a few more runs off Dickey thanks to homers by Jimmy Rollins and Domonic Brown. The Phillies beat the Mets, 3-1.
Tuesday night after work I was going to go back to Citi Field to see the Mets even though the Yankees were also home. Thanks to mother nature, neither game was played. Instead I went home and I got an unexpected night of rest. It was nice to have some time to relax after another busy day at work.
Wednesday night after work I went back to Citi Field to see the Mets play the Phillies. The Yankees were playing a day/night doubleheader to make up for the game that got rained out Tuesday night in the Bronx.
I got to see Sam again when I went in. Like he says it's always a pleasure. It certainly is. I went upstairs and I ate a few slices of pizza at Two Boots which is located on the food court near our seats on the Promenade level. It was really good and filling.
As for the game we saw, the Mets and Phillies battled it out again as Cole Hamels of the Phillies and rookie Matt Harvey who was making his last appearance of the season for the Mets hooked up. Jimmy Rollins lead off the game with a homer to give the Phillies the early 1-0 lead. The Mets got even in the third as Daniel Murphy drove in the equalizer. The Mets took the lead in the sixth inning when David Wright hit a homer to make it 2-1. Cole Hamels was pulled after six innings allowing two runs while he walked one and struck out ten.
Matt Harvey pitched better as he went seven innings giving up just the lead off homer. He showed promise for 2013 and beyond. I hope he does indeed pan out for the Mets.
Since this is modern times, the game came down to the battle of the bullpens. The Phillies survived a scare in the eighth as the Mets loaded the bases with one out looking for some insurance. Andres Torres hit into a costly inning ending double play. The Mets got a scoreless eighth inning from Bobby Parnell. In the ninth, Josh Edgin was summoned to close out the game. He struck out the first two batters with no problem. He proceeded to walk Chase Utley in front of Ryan Howard. That was the beginning of the end for the Mets as the Phillies awoke from the dead as Ryan Howard blasted a home run to right field to give the Phillies a 3-2 lead. The Mets got a single with one out but they couldn't get him in as the Phillies still had a pulse.
Thursday night after work I decided to stick to my original plan of going to the Yankee game after work. The Mets decided to make up the game that got rained out on Tuesday that night to spite the Phillies. The Phillies got the last laugh as they scored eight runs in the first inning on their way to a 16-1 whipping of the Mets. The King went there because he has a streak of not missing a game at Citi Field. He's only missed one since the ballpark opened back in 2009.
As for me, I'm always true to my word. I got an invitation from the Yankees the week before to take part in a pre game social that was for season ticket holders. I was able to choose Tuesday, Wednesday or Thursday night. So I told them I'll come Thursday night knowing the Mets weren't going to be home. I put the King is as my guest. He didn't make it. It was no big deal. But I felt obligated to show up since I committed myself already. That's just the way I am. I don't make promises I can't keep barring an unforeseen emergency.
I wound up going to the picnic area out by the left field gate where the social was taking place when I got off the subway. I wound up seeing a few friends, Michael Abrams and Richard Zimmerman who were taking part as well. We spoke and then we noticed Yankee General Manager Brian Cashman who was standing nearby. He was there talking to the fans who had questions they wanted to ask him. We approached him and he spoke to us. It was a really cool experience. When we were done he took a picture with all of us. With that being said, I'm glad I stuck with my decision.
When we were done, we had some hot dogs, hamburgers and ice cream that were there for us to take. It turned out to be a nice social gathering for the Yankee season ticket holders.
Once we finished we all went up to our seats in section 420B and we were joined by our pal Larry Peim who at also at the game.
As for the game we saw, it started fast but it dragged on. The Yankees were playing the Blue Jays. The Blue Jays lead 2-0 heading into the bottom of the third inning when Ichiro Suzuki hit a homer to slice the lead in half at 2-1. Phil Hughes who started for the Yankees struck out nine batters in the first four innings. In the third inning, he hit a few batters including Moises Sierra that allowed a run to score. He benefited as the Yankees scored a touchdown if you will in the bottom of the fourth inning. Nick Swisher hit a grand slam to cap the scoring after Ichiro Suzuki hit a two run double and Derek Jeter delivered a run scoring single. Hughes made it through five innings after he gave up a two run homer to Moises Sierra who he previously hit. Apparently it was payback time. In the end, Phil Hughes got the win and the last laugh. The Yankees got those two runs back in their half of the fifth inning to extend their lead to 10-4. After a few innings of scoreless relief by Derek Lowe, Cory Wade came on and he got roughed up for three runs in the eighth inning. With that being said, a save situation was created. Rafael Soriano was too overworked to benefit so David Robertson got the chance to close it out instead. He did so by striking out the three batters he faced as he preserved the 10-7 victory for the Yankees. I might add it took a mere 3 hours and 41 minutes to play. In that regard, I wish I wasn't there. It's the nature of the game of baseball. You never know how long a game's going to go from one to the next. Some are better than others. Time wise this was a bad one.
Friday night after work I went back to Citi Field to see the Mets play the Marlins. It was nice to see Sam again when I went in.
I went up to my perch and met up with the usual die hards that we know. We got a special visit from a follower of my blog, Fredy Sanchez who introduced me to his friend Ramiro. He said he enjoys reading about my adventures on my blog. I told him I greatly appreciate that..
As for the game we saw, the Mets fresh off their embarrassing loss to the Phillies the night before, had their hitting shoes on early on this night. They scored early and often as they got three runs in the first inning and two more in the second to take a 5-0 lead. They made it hold up as they went on to defeat the Marlins, 7-3.
After the game, the King, Bryan Gilligan and I went to celebrate at Donovan's Pub where we had a post game dinner and drinks. We wound up meeting our pal Frank Anichiarico there as well. It was a great way to start the weekend.
Speaking of the weekend, stay tuned for the recap of the memorable weekend I enjoyed. Please bear with me as I find time to write it. There will be a number of special posts.
Thank you for reading and following along.