Tuesday, April 7, 2015

Siesta Key Spring 2015: Journal #3 (3/18)

During our vacation, we went to a preseason game at McKechnie Field in Bradenton, FL.  Lon and Jared have gone to at least one game every year, but this was my first experience. I'm glad I went; there was much to see and enjoy.

McKeshnie Field is the "Southern Home of the Pittsburgh Pirates" and the Bradenton Marauders' home.

We acquired our tickets like this, an hour or so before the game. Unbeknownst to us, they were in the third row, between the dugout and home plate. Sweet!

I was impressed by the concession area. It was very appealing with palm trees galore.

The visitors were the Detroit Lions.

Notice the empty seats. By the time the game started, the park announced a record attendance of over 9,000 since McKechnie Field was built in 1923, 92 years ago. 

...readying the field for the game.

What the heck is Mr. Leinenkugel doing way down here? Shouldn't he be back in Wisconsin in the snow and cold where the brewery is located, bottling beer for me to buy for the summer?   

What's a ballgame without a hot dog and a beer?

Lon and Jared opted for foot long hot dogs at a different stand from where I got mine. No, I didn't wait to start chomping on mine.     

I've outgrown the need for souvenirs. Thank goodness. 

Back in our seats again, the pirates' mascot was "casing the joint."

...a tender moment between opposing teams' mascots. 

...a lucky boy throwing the first pitch...

...to the Pirates' mascot.

He is who he is.

This is Brad Ausmus, the manager for the Tigers. He played for the Boston Red Sox.

We were very close to the Tigers.

Alan Trammel, a hall of famer, signs a ball for a fan.

We were trying to behave, but we must look like trouble. That security guard had his eyes on us already.

I'd love to have that bar sign, but it's too big for my suitcase. (Perhaps security saw me eyeing it). 

Look at that. What a seat!

Although the feathered fan had the best seat, we appreciated ours.

Look up. Can you imagine standing through an entire baseball game or even a few innings? No thank you very much. 

These are stat sheets that a dedicated fan compiles and brings to the games. He showed them to Lon. The guy loves going to all the preseason games at McKeshnie Field and also at the Ed Smith Stadium in Sarasota. Coincidentally, Lon has found himself seated beside this fellow at 3 different games over the years we've been vacationing down there. What are the chances of that happening???  

That's the stat keeper in the black hat. He told us that as long as he takes his wife on a nice trip every year, she's fine with his dedication to his passion. 
Oh my, this is sinfully good stuff.

No bottles. Darn.

Enough, already.

I left the game to roam through the concession area. At dusk, it was especially pleasant.

We passed the Darwin Brewing Company on our way to and from our car at McKechnie Field. The following week, we visited the Big Top Brewery. 

I love this fellow!

As we left the game, we passed the brewery I mentioned previously on our way to the car.

1 comment:

Cap Chastain said...

WOW .. Nice Post .. and the Detroit Tigers were 'in town' for you! How amazing the man with his 'stat sheets'. It sure looked like a lot of fun. Take Me Out To The Ball Game!