Friday Night Lights

Last night’s game was a debacle as nothing seemed to go right for the Diamondbacks. In what may have been his last start as an Arizona Diamondback, Miguel Batista was rocked lasting only 3 1/3 innings and allowing 7 runs on 8 hits. This was probably not the impression he wanted to leave with the Diamondbacks nor potential suitors for his services in 2007. With the score 7-0 as he left, it was a big hole to try and dig out of. The Diamondbacks players just could not figure out Jake Peavy who threw six innings allowing only 2 runs and 5 hits. In the end the Diamondbacks were on the short end of a 12-4 beating to start the final series of the year. Not everything at last night’s game was negative, there is an excitement building in the air for the final games with the Arizona Diamondbacks for Craig Counsell and Luis Gonzalez. Signs wishing the players well began popping up throughout the ballpark with more to come.

Tonight marks the beginning of the weekend festivities. The Diamondbacks have reporters and camera crews positioned throughout the stadium allowing fans to wish Gonzalez and Counsell good luck and to thank them for their service to the team. Prizes will be given away throughout the series and fans will have an opportunity to purchase raffle tickets to win the shirts off our D’backs. This series marks the end of baseball season meaning there is a blowout sale at the team shop with merchandise at 50 percent off. Additionally, if you purchase $400 worth of merchandise you will receive a game used base. I’ve always dreamed of having first base at my house so I really wanted to get the base but I realized I would need to find $800 worth of Diamondbacks gear to meet the $400 threshold due to the 50 percent off sale. After an exhaustive search of the Team Shop, I realized that I couldn’t find that much stuff that I didn’t already have. I was pretty depressed at that thought but I think Trina was even more depressed than I was. I was surprised to think that she wanted the base too but she later explained that she just found it sad that our house has turned into an outlet store for the Arizona Diamondbacks if we have that much merchandise. Sometimes I really don’t get her.

While the merchandise sale and prize giveaway are both exciting, I am still in a sober mood at the thoughts that I only have three more games to attend. I only have one more parking game which is tonight (we park at the Arizona Science Center during weekday games but on weekends we take advantage of free parking on the street). There will only be three more meals at Chase Field meaning only a few more opportunities for a Hungry Hill sausage or a RIBBIE’S pulled chicken sandwich. Only three more times to ridicule the US Airways Catch a Ball Fly with Us contestants. Only three more games of swiping my Diamondbacks MVP rewards card to accumulate points towards a Diamondbacks experience. Only three more pages in my scorebook to record the plays of the game. Man, just thinking about that is making me depressed.

On a game related note about last night’s contest, Carlos Quentin was again robbed of a hit by home plate umpire Ed Hickox. With an 0-1 count, Padres pitcher Jake Peavy threw an inside pitch that hit Quentin on the forearm. Hickox claimed that the ball did not hit Carlos but rather it hit the bat making it a foul ball strike. Quentin pleaded his case as did Arizona manager Bob Melvin but to no avail. Carlos would later strike out in that at bat stranding a runner at first. This is the second time that the umpires have blown a hit by pitch call against Quentin. Perhaps the umpires association should offer training classes to help their crews identify the difference between a bat and an arm. Because of this error, Quentin remains stuck at 8 hit by pitch for the 2006 season. Craig Counsell was struck in the first inning giving him 9 hit by pitch tying him for the team lead with Conor Jackson. So due to the errors by Ed Hickox and Paul Emmel, Carlos may not win the title of “Most often hit Diamondback” which would really be a shame.

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