On Sunday August 27 Comair Flight 5191 was due to take off at Blue Grass airport in Lexington Kentucky. The flight was scheduled to go to Atlanta but never made it. The crash is still under investigation but initial reports state that the plane took an incorrect taxi route leaving it on the wrong runway and causing the plane to run out of space. The crash took the lives of 49 passengers and crew members. It was the worst plane disaster in the United States since 2001. Before the Arizona Diamondbacks game against the Los Angeles Dodgers on Sunday the teams requested a moment of silence prior to the singing of the national anthem. It was a tragic accident but we wondered, what did this have to do with baseball? It was very soon that we had an answer to that question


read more

Are You New?

The Diamondbacks ended their brief 6 game home stand today with an afternoon game against the San Diego Padres. The game was scheduled to being at 3:40 PM local Arizona time. There are not too many afternoon games in a season especially during the week so they are all kind of special. An afternoon game is not without its troubles. First there is the fact that you have to leave work early to get there. This wasn’t too bad today as I began work very early today so that I was finished before three o’clock. Second, you have to deal with traffic approaching rush hour. This too wasn’t too much of a hassle since I have mapped our route out to a science so I utilized my back street traffic patterns to get to the ballpark going the back way. Finally it is hard to find someone to go with me. Most of the kids are still in school when the game was ready to start. Dakota though was home for early release so he was the leading candidate.


read more

Golden Gloves

As part of the 2000 season the Arizona Diamondbacks introduced something they called the Golden Gloves. A Golden Glove is an elderly person dressed in a full Diamondbacks uniform whose responsibility it is to retrieve foul balls along the first base and third base line. Before I get a bunch of email complaining about my use of the word elderly let me explain that to me, if you are in your later sixties or older then to me you are elderly. In fact, if you can remember when gasoline was less than a dollar and you were driving at the time you are probably elderly. Anyway, these Golden Glove participants are introduced before each game and tip their hats to the cheering fans. Cheering fans in this case are those who are right behind the Golden Glove and are either trying to get on the JumboTron during the introduction or are trying to suck up to the Golden Glove in hopes that they will throw you a ball. You see the Golden Glove is allowed to give the foul ball to a fan in the stands once he has retrieved it. It therefore becomes a fight to see who can garner the attention of the Golden Glove and get a game ball.


read more

MVP Rewards

Starting in 1999, the Arizona Diamondbacks began a fan loyalty program. Originally the Diamondbackers program would reward fans for game attendance. It was a great program. Every time you went to a game you would scan your membership card and points would be accumulated. Along the way you would win prizes for your attendance. For those who attended over a certain level (usually 70 games) there would be a special prize. The first year was an autographed bat by a player. Trina won a Greg Colbrun bat while I received a Luis Gonzalez autograph. The problem was that there were members who took advantage of the program. I would see a single member with a stack of membership cards that they would scan at each game. The Diamondbackers program evolved where you soon had to swipe your membership card and your game ticket. At least now there would have to be a one-to-one relationship of cards to tickets. Still there were people who found a way around the system. This year the Diamondbacks are trying a new program called the MVP Rewards program.


read more

The Screamer

Each team that comes into Chase Field is a different fan dynamic. Most of the opposing teams fans are pretty well behaved and good natured. The St. Louis Cardinals fans are always well informed and just enjoy a good clean game. The Cubs fans are diehards but they are so accustomed to losing that they are just glad when their team shows up for the game. The Mets fans are pretty obnoxious and opinionated and I’ve yet to go to a game when New York was playing that there was not at least one fight in the stands. The Dodger fans are quickly becoming similarly painful to bear. It is one thing to come to the game with your face painted Dodger blue wearing a blue and white afro wig and a Steve Garvey jersey but when you start booing the home team player introductions you start to cross the line. I’m all for fans expressing their thoughts but that’s kind of low class. The Diamondbacks fans put up with this for two games, and then on Sunday we released a weapon that I don’t think any of us even realized we had. We brought in the screamer.


read more

Each season before day of game tickets go on sale the Arizona Diamondbacks release the schedule of games. This is usually a time of great excitement as I scour the calendar to see which team will be coming to Chase Field. I also try to imagine how the season will be unfolding for each series. Will the Diamondbacks be battling for first place in the division? When this opponent comes to town will it be a potential play-off match-up? Which games will be more crowded than others? All of these thoughts race through my mind as I look at how the season will play out. Along with the schedule, the Diamondbacks also release the promotional schedule. This is usually a list of free giveaways that you receive if you are one of the first X number of people to go through the turnstile. My kids approach that with all of the zeal of kids at Christmas. I guess they figure that if they are going to have to put up with dad dragging them to the ballpark for 81 regular season games that they should somehow be rewarded. So the immediately begin looking for which freebies they are going to be able to snag.


read more

After what seems like forever, the Diamondbacks are back in town. The recent road trip was a nightmare as the Diamondbacks saw themselves dropping down the standings like a rock in a river. This home stand doesn’t look to make it any easier. Arizona continues its National League West portion of the schedule as the Los Angeles Dodgers come in for three games then the San Diego Padres come to down for three. Both teams are ahead of the Diamondbacks in the standings so these games become paramount. Tonight’s game has Claudio Vargas pitching for Arizona while the Dodgers counter with future hall-of-fame pitcher Greg Maddux. At first glance this match up would definitely favor the Dodgers but if you look beyond the fact that Maddux has won 318 games you will find that the Diamondbacks are the one team that holds a winning record over him. Maddux is 1-9 lifetime against the snakes with a 5.35 ERA. He is 0-5 at Chase Field so this should have been an interesting match-up.


read more