I wanted to see a baseball game before heading to northern California,and beacause the Dodgers weren’t playing and that i had already seen the 66ers couple days before,I went to Rancho Cucamonga. I was pumped after my 9 balls game at San Manuel Stadium and I was hoping to accomplish another ballhawking feat. But when I entered in the stadium,two things immediatly stroke me:
1)There was no BP underway,not even players playing catch for both teams
2)There was protective nets EVERYWHERE in the stadium to protect the fans from being hit(or catch) any balls
I waited maybe 30 minutes,and then some High Desert’s players came to play catch in right-field. I was watching them pitching and succeed memorizing all their names by looking at their numbers(A dozen in total). When Jamal Austin finished,I called his name and he immediatly threw the ball to me. Then,my second ball of the day came from Jabari Blash,after calling his name. Both balls came in a 20 seconds span,and these were going to be the only balls for the day.
I went to buy some food(FYI,LoanMart Field have definitly the best choice of food around the MiLB stadiums,or at least the one in the California League,give it a try next game you’ll catch there!) and the game started. This was my view for the first pitch:
I then sit there for potential foul balls:
But none came close.
At the end of the game, I went to the HDM dugout and asked to manager to have the lineup card. He told me no,but I didn’t give up. I asked the players,the other coaches,etc. The manager finally saw what was going on and told me:
”You really want that card that bad?”
”Ok then. There you go!”
Look at that!
*2 balls at this game.
*11 balls in one game this season=average of 5,5 per game.
*Streak of 2 games with at least one ball.
*Total of 11 balls.
*Total of 1 game ball.
*Total of 1 Lineup Card
*2 lifetime Stadium (San Manuel Stadium,LoanMart Field)
But let me tell you how I’ve got all these balls! Well after climbing Angel’s Landing at Zion National Park(God,I love Utah!) in approximatly 4 hours and a half, i realized that it was just 10:00 and that we could be at San Bernardino for the games at 7:05. Plus,jetlag was helping me to get to the beggining of the BP. So after a long day of road,crossing the Californian desert, I arrived at San Manuel Stadium. I bought a ticket,and decided to look around the stadium. Just ou of my reach in rightfield,there was 3 balls just sitting there! I knew that if I was the first in line to enter the stadium,it would be a piece of cake to get them all!
I went to the main entrance,and realized that the gates were already opened. I saw a sign that was sayin ”Early entrance for seasons tickets holder ONLY” but I still tryed to pass,and I suceed! I ran to right field and got all the ball. The first one (my first MILB ball) was not an official California League baseball (…) but the two other were officials.
Two players saw me in the right field and were joking about me throwing the balls to them. I knew that i would’nt suceed to get toss-up from them since I actually was the only fan in ALL the stadium. I headed to left-field where i got my fourth ball of the day(toss-up). After this ball, I decided to look around the stadium to buy a 66ers cap(their logo is just incredibly cool!). But a usher called me,and I didn’t knew why. I was afraid to be in trouble for X reason. But as soon that he got close to me, I saw him looking in his pocket,and held me an official ball. A usher was giving me a ball! How cool is that? It was,at this point,the fifth ball of the day. The sixth was a ball found near a fence in right field. The last ball of the BP was thrown to me by a player of Rancho Cucamonga (the visiting team) after playing catch with one of his teamate. 7 balls in the BP,it was unreal! After that, I met a guy (I forgot his name) that was taking pictures of the players to make card and give them back to the player for the next game! Cool guy!
This was my view of the first picth:
At the top of the 4th inning, McDonald,a Rancho player grounded the ball right to me. I made a couple of steps,but I still managed to caught that foul ball. Eight ball of the day!
At that point, I was just watching the game. My 9th ball of the day was totally unexpected;the bullpen at this stadium are situated near the foul ball line,a pitcher made a wild pitch and it landed at my feet! Awesome time at San Bernardino! The stadium is awesome and everyone that love baseball and visiting L.A. and don’t want to pay too much to see baseball have to go there! See you soon 66ers!
*9 balls at this game.
*9 balls in one game this season=average of 9 per game.
*Streak of one game with at least a ball.
*Total of 9 balls.
*Total of 1 game ball.
*1 lifetime Stadium (San Manuel Stadium)