"O" what a day is was at the Yard.
I decided to go all out and buy front row seats for this afternoon's game, as an early b-day gift to myself.
Well, the day starts out crappy. Traffic was crazy (I don't care what Tom Davis said about it was not going to be problem getting around town today). Couldn't park in the usual garage, but I found one about three blocks away for $24. Ok, I got over it, as this was going to be my special pre b-day game to myself.
I get to my seat and find that I'm right behind the guys with the cameras, not along the wall, where I thought I was going to be. I'm thinking..."great, no chance for a ball today"...sigh. Ok, I get over it. I settle in and start talking to the camera guy (Dave) and tell him..."now, if a ball comes your way, could you please give it to me, as it's soon to be my b-day and I've never got a game ball (Dipper, I know you're understanding how I feel about this)." He smiles and says "sure, if I don't get hurt trying to get it, I'll see what I can do". I'm thinking cool, as I know how balls seem to go find the camera wells.
So, a woman and two little ones sit down beside me. Yep, there goes my chance. I know, I know...children first. But remember, I'm getting older and I'm getting tired of waiting. It's been thirty plus years of waiting. How much longer can an old woman wait?
She's talking away, not really focusing on the game (kinda making me crazy). First inning ends and a Sox player tosses a ball to one of her kids (our seats are next to Sox dugout).
The woman next to me is talking away and tells the kids, "hey, the cameras are scanning the crowd for a winner." Yep, the kids win a pass for two, to Hershey Park. She looks at me and asks,"what did they win, a soda? Really, you can't read the jumbotron? I nicely explain what they've won. I'm thinking...great, first a ball and now Hershey Park (do I sound like a terrible person, or what)?
Third inning, now the other little guy gets a ball, yep, from Dave, the camera guy. Appears he has forgotten all about our earlier conversation. Then the guy behind me gets a foul ball. And then a Sox fan, right behind me gets one. Now, I'm getting depressed.
Ok, here's where it gets great. I say silently to my dad (he died back in Nov.) "Dad, if you're up there, give me a sign that you're ok (I'm big on signs, btw). You always made sure you didn't forget my b-day, esp. since mom died. So, this year for my b-day present, I want a O's game ball. If you get me a ball, I know your in a good place."
Fifth inning, Lew Ford is up to bat and hits a foul ball to DeMarlo Hale. I thinking cool, maybe just maybe...but he puts it in his back pocket. When the inning ends, he takes the ball out of his back pocket and points to me, from about fifteen feet away. He throws it to me...perfect grab by me, btw. Oh yeah, I got my O's 20th anniversary ball. Ok, I know it wasn't caught directly from the bat, but hey, like I said, I'm not getting any younger and I'm getting oh so desperate. I got my sign from dad and I finally have a ball. I don't care about the circumstances of how I got it. If you're reading this DeMarlo, you're wonderful. You don't know it, but your an angel in disguise. I know it was dad's work, because it was Lew Ford's ball (dad only drove Fords). So, it had to be from Lew's bat.
Seventh inning...a hard foul ball from JJ's bat, right to me, on a one hopper. My fav player and yep, I missed it. It went off my glove (a borrowed right handed glove doesn't work real well for a lefty) and hit me in the jaw and went into the camera well. Another little guy got it. That's ok, as now I'm ecstatic, as I can say that I just got hit in the jaw, by my favorite Oriole.
My jaw is little bit sore, but I don't care, as I've just been to the best game ever. The O's won and I got my game ball.
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