Tuesday, June 26, 2012

7 Cities, 7 Games, 7 Days - Day 4

Day Four!  Somehow I neglected to realize that I would be crossing from one time zone (Standard) into another (Mountain) and gain an hour as a result.  Unfortunately, this revelation was not made until after I was already on the road to Colorado Springs.  Instead of sleeping an extra hour, I spent those sixty minutes in a baseball card shop this morning making a dent in my 1978 Topps set.  In the end, I'm glad my little miscalculation happened!

Colorado Springs is the home of the Colorado Rockies Triple-A affiliate, the Sky Sox.  Security Service Field is the only minor league baseball field to have a humidor, which is supposed to help combat the effects the elevation has on a flying baseball.  Speaking of elevation, Security Service Field is at a higher elevation (6,531 feet) than an other professional baseball stadium, even Coors Field in Denver!

Here's the token picture of the view walking up to the field.  It was a very modest entrance and doesn't really say "baseball" to me.

Here's a picture of the field with a golf course and residential properties in the distant background.

The scoreboard was pretty typical for a minor league park.  The Sky Sox logo is the jumbo-tron portion.

Here's the main party plaza at the field and home to virtually the only shade when the first pitch was thrown at 12:35 p.m.  When purchasing my ticket I asked for a seat in the shade.  My seat was in the sun the entire length of the game.  Booo!

To the left of the party plaza, posted above, there was a hot tub in the right field corner.  Different.  Not something I'd want to do at a ballgame, but certainly different.

I added this picture because I thought it was funny that one of the relief pitchers had to tote the "pink backpack" to the bullpen at the start of the game.  Cubs fans may be familiar with the tradition of the bullpen backpack.  Usually the bullpen member with the least seniority is in charge of packing it with gum, sun flower seeds, and the like.  It's a rite of passage!

The mascot for the Sky Sox was Sox the Fox.  Apparently he comes highly recommended and was once voted mascot of the year.  He did a standing back flip, pull pranks on the crowd, carried a LARGE squirt gun, and generally acted like an eight-year-old jacked up on Mountain Dew.  The crowd loved him, including myself.

Below is the view from inside the ballpark of one of the nearby by mountains.  Colorado is gorgeous, and yes, that's an understatement.  

The Sky Sox beat the Tacoma Rainiers 5-4 in nine innings.  The temperature creeped into the high 90's over the course of the game, but I was able to find a folding chair and I sat in the comforts of the shade and wind on the main concourse. 

As I was on a barren stretch of highway moving north after the game toward Denver I took this picture.  Note the temperature in the upper right of the viewing window.  Sheesh.

The heat has been not only an issue for baseball loving fans, but also a major concern for those in the path of this wildfire on the other side of the the mountain range.  Everyone who received a mandatory evacuation notice, because of the spreading fires, was granted free admission to today's game.  It was a nice gesture on behalf of the Sky Sox, but I think I would have been a bit more concerned with my home burning.  Definitely helps to put things in perspective. 

I'm resting up for the return trip back to Peoria in Golden, Colorado, with my sister-in-law and her husband.  Good people.  They're going to the Rockies/Nationals game tomorrow night with me in Denver.  Should be another hot one!

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for the humidor link--never would have figured that out on my own. Very ingenious mascot head, but I wonder if he scares the little kids. Mom P.S. If you talk to Ralph on the phone, explain to him what the humidor is used for, because he didn't get a chance to see the explanatory link about it.