The Pirates came home for their final homestand of the season. It is an eleven game homestand that runs through Monday, September 28th. Of the eleven games, I will only be able to attend 8 of them. So, if am I to have any shot at 400 balls snagged in 2009, I need to snag 50 balls in 8 games, an average of 6.25 per game. (However, keep in mind that 4 of the 8 that I can attend are dreaded day games) I might be able to do this….
I only got one ball during the Pirates portion of batting practice. As I was checking for Easter eggs near the foul pole, a home run hit by Robinzon Diaz landed ten feet to the right of where I typically stand.
I was able to run over quickly enough to pick it up off of the ground. It was ball #1.
Usually, I get a majority of my balls snagged in a day before 5:30. The first half hour is for season ticket holders only, and its a ghost town. However, after the Pirates finished hitting at 5:10, the entire first group of Padres hitters were all lefties – meaning no balls would be hit to left field with any authority.
To make matters worse, the pitchers in left field were extra stingy, and didn’t seem to care that I was the only Padres “fan” in attendance.
At 5:30, I ran over to center field. I ended up catching the FIRST HOME RUN hit by a Padre batter at around 5:45. They weren’t putting any balls into the seats at all. Ball #2 was a high fly ball hit by an unknown lefty that I caught about five rows deep in section 140, in center field.
Moments later, I got Sean Gallagher to toss me a ball, but he woefully underthrew the ball, and it hit a chair two rows in front of me. This guy ran over and snatched the ball out of a chair, as I was climbing over a row to grab it.
Game: 5 balls (2 hit, 2 thrown, 1 device)
Season: 355 balls (188 hit, 104 thrown, 63 device)
Games: 73 games (7 of which didn’t have BP)
Average: 4.86 balls per game
Career: 521 balls
Streak: 88 consecutive games attended with at least 1 ball snagged.
Race for 400 in 2009: Need 45 in 7 games, 6.43 per game