All-Star Merchandise Available

Any trip to downtown Phoenix requires a trip to Chase Field. Even though I cannot get into the stadium I have to at least walk around the plaza and think about what it will be like when baseball season starts once again.

No trip to Chase Field is complete without a stop by the main Team Shop off the rotunda on the main concourse of the stadium. A visit to the Team Shop is always a precarious situation according to my wife.

Despite being a Diamondbacks fan since the team was awarded on March 9, 1995 I always seem to find some piece of Diamondbacks merchandise I don’t own when I got to the Team Shop. I tend to look at that as a positive while my wife cringes whenever I walk through the door.

I think in the back of her mind she just knows this is going to be the day I bring home the three-foot Justin Upton bobble head. I have to admit, I am tempted, I just can’t figure out how long I’ll be forced to sleep on the couch when I do bring home the giant bobble head.

With the off-season now upon us, I had little faith that my trip would uncover much of anything but I didn’t let that discourage me. As I walked into the Team Shop, I felt a little like Norm from Cheers.

When the employes greet you by name, it may be a sign that you shop there too often. Almost as soon as I was greeted I could see the employees were very excited.

I was led to the middle of the store to a display that could best be described as a small preliminary shrine to the goodness of baseball. There on the tables and on racks surrounding it were the first 2011 All-Star game merchandise.

I felt my legs weaken while my heart rate rose like a thermometer in an Arizona summer. I reached up and brushed away a tear of joy. While the All-Star logo has been in Chase Field since September, this was the first time any merchandise was available for sale to the fans.

It was finally starting to sink in that the All-Star game was actually going to be at Chase Field. My eyes darted from T-shirts to polo shirts and from hats to pins. In that moment I felt like a kid on Christmas morning.

I stood there pointing at items oohing and talking in a high pitched excited voice like a circus clown on helium. At each new item I scrambled through the piles of merchandise looking for sizes and colors.

Not for a moment did I consider what my wife might say when I came home with three bags of Team Shop bounty. It wasn’t until I stood before a stern-faced wife did I stop to think that she would not be just as excited as I was about the All-Star game merchandise.

With the quickness of a cheetah she snatched up my treasures and began walking away. As she departed I heard her say, “Well it looks like I am done shopping for you for Christmas, and your birthday, and our anniversary, and Father’s Day, and any other holiday I can think of.”

Well all I know is that I am going to have one heck of a holiday season all thanks to a trip to the Chase Field Team Shop.


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