Each Spring Training, the Arizona Diamondbacks schedule one Cactus League home game south of the border in Mexico. This has become a very popular tradition with both the team and the fans.
It is usually a split squad game and the Diamondbacks attempt to send players with some tie to the country. This year the game is being played in Hermosillo Mexico against the Colorado Rockies.
The game had all the excitement of a play-off game with the fans cheering each and every pitch. They definitely got their money’s worth as the Diamondbacks came from behind to beat the Rockies 8-7.
Perhaps the two most popular people on the diamond were not even the players. Rockies manager Jim Tracy was extremely popular with fans remembering his days of playing in the Mexican League during the 1980’s.
On the Diamondbacks side it was Assistant to the President and for the day First Base Coach Luis Gonzalez who garnered the largest ovation. Gonzo was his usual approachable self signing autographs and acknowledging the fans who were in attendance.
This may have just been a Spring Training game when you look at the schedule but to these teams and to these fans it was definitely something more. It was an ambassador’s trip to bring the game of Major League Baseball to a country that rarely gets to see it in person.