Results tagged ‘ Garrett Atkins ’

It’s 2010

Recently, I received this note from my favorite Cardinal loving Chicagoan:

Goddamn it, it’s January 13th already and you have yet to write in 2010, Emmy. Get on it! With love of course :-)
–Jeff

It was like getting a threat-mantic e-mail, threatening, but written with love.

So I figured, “I guess I should get on this.”

Welcome to 2010 fellow bloggers! We’re almost through the offseason! We’ve almost made it! I guess BSAD hit me a little harder than I thought, most of my days are spent working and when I’m not working, I can be found beneath my flannel penguin sheets (yes, I have penguin sheets, don’t judge) catching up on m Z’s.

Some big names like Matt Holliday and Jason Bay have now left our hot stove discussion, and for the most part, it seems as though the Rockies have remained fairly quiet in their quest for free agents. Their biggest move it seems, signing catcher Miguel Olivio, and if you want to call that news… well… I don’t have anything witty to say about that.

Right now, one of hte biggest priorities for the Rockies is locking up Huston Street. Oh, wait… they did that already? Okay, then they’ll need to try and come to a deal with Ryan Spilborghs to expand our outfielders and avoid arbitra… oh… they did that too? Well, seeing how the Rockies were the only club in 2009 to have five pitchers with double digit wins, it’d be nice if Jason Hammel stuck around with them… are you serious? That happened too?

So, here’s the deal, fellow bloggers: I was writing this entry all about how the Rockies need to spend their money wisely, because, let’s face it: the Rockies are a relatively cheap team. And I mean that in the nicest way possible, which really doesn’t sound nice at all, but the Rockies don’t have the deep pockets that we’d all like to see.

Philadelphia+Phillies+v+Colorado+Rockies+Game+otaFLSIrULdl.jpgSo here I was, talking about how after a very disappointing end to the 2009 season, everyone was like, “it was all Huston Street’s fault!” And I went on this rant about how wrong these people were and comments like that were made by ignorant bandwagon fans, and if it hadn’t been for Huston Street, the Rockies wouldn’t have even made their way to the playoffs in the first place. Street was clutch for the team during the regular season, and it was clearly defined in the chemistry that he had with them.

Yes, this long rant now wasted because he’s signed with the team. So, yes, Jefferson, once again, you were right (is that guy ever wrong?), I should’ve been blogging a lot earlier.

Things now seem to be coming together for the Rockies who have reached deals with Clint Barmes, Chris Iannetta, Jorge de la Rosa, Ryan Spilborghs, Huston Street, Rafael Betancourt, and Jason Hammel; the latter four ofFrancis.jpg them had filed for arbitration and now the four of them will be sticking around. Our startingpitching rotation could be interesting with Jeff Francis returning after missing a significant portion of 2008 and the 2009 season. In 2007 he was thought to be the ace of the Rockies and it was projected that a Francis vs. Josh Beckett matchup would be the ultimate showdown. Obviously we know how that worked out. After not pitching for almost a year and a half, I’m interested in seeing how he’ll perform.

Our starting infield is also looking good with Todd Helton, Barmes, Troy Tulowitzki, and Ian Stewart. The name that’s missing? Yeah, you know it: I’ll miss my dearest GarrettGarrett Atkins 0009.JPG Atkins, I stood by his side during the worst season of his career, constantly cheering for him and celebrating just as much, if not more when he hits his heartbreaking nine homers. That’s right, he didn’t even hit double digits… and I can hear a certain Chicagoan snickering about that at this very moment!  Yeah, it’ll break my heart not to see him in those beautiful purple pinstripes, but best of luck to him with the O’s.

Most likely, our projected outfield is Brad Hawpe, Dexter Fowler, and Carlos Gonzalez. Gonzalez had a fantastic season with theJim Tracy 0004.jpg Eagles during winter ball in Venezuela. The Rockies have speed with Eric Young Jr. as well as Ryan Spilborghs and a powerful bat with Seth Smith, also known as Mr. Clutch from last season.

Most important to the team is the return of manager Jim Tracy, who had incredible chemistry with the team and turned around a rough start to their season.

Last and probably most important, Haiti is still in need of our help. Imagine if every person in the world donated $1 to help out. It’s so little, but adds up to so much. So if you can, please donate, there are many organizations out there.

MLB has partnered with UNICEF, The American Red Cross and Doctors Without Borders are also accepting donations. CNN also provides a list of websites that you can donate to.

Five Seconds of Glory

The average Rockies game contains about 20,000 to 30,000 people, probably more lately since the state of Colorado has decided to jump on the bandwagon. Of those 20,000 to 30,000 people, I represent one. I don’t expect that the Rockies or FSN will take note of the lowly asian sitting out in the Pavilion; in fact, I don’t expect really anyone to notice me out there, I blend in quite well with the blanket of Rockies t-shirts out there.

Of the, I have no idea how many, possibly thousands of blogs on MLBlogs, I represent one. One single Rockies blog in a sea of major league blogs; an average blogger whose writing is… well… average. I don’t expect to get noticed for it, although I wouldn’t mind if someone had talked to me before putting up that terrible picture of Matt Daley on the Rockies homepage.

Sleeping Daley.jpgAs a fan, I suppose in reality, we don’t expect to get noticed for our fanhood. We move through the crowds, maybe hoping to catch a homerun ball here or avoid a bat flying at our head there, be apart of the greatest game on earth somehow. As much as I would like for the Rockies to say, “hey, these are some good pictures, and this is a good blog, we should’ve talked to her before putting up that picture of Matt Daley where he looks like he’s sleeping,” the reality of ever actually getting noticed is slim. After all, for each of us as an individual, we are but one fan.

One fan sitting out in the crowd, one fan writing just another blog.

However, this one fan got their five seconds of fame for ten seconds. Make sense?

On July 5th, I received a few text messages from friends saying I had just been on television. That’s right, yours truly was standing in the crowd singing “God Bless America” and was shown on television next to a rather strange looking, “maybe I should stand uncomfortably close to you” dude.

Emily on TV.JPGOkay, so, he wasn’t that uncomfortably close, it just looks to me like he is.

It was my five seconds of glory, which I think we all kind of expect to get one day, the five seconds of catching a ball, the five seconds of screaming on the Rockies post game show and having Tom Helmer stick the microphone out toward the crowd, the five seconds of being the only fan sitting in the stands while it’s pouring and the game is still playing.

Not that I’m letting it go to my head or anything, but it was cool to hit a bar with my friends, JENN AND MARY, and have the bartender say, “Hey! You were on TV during the Rockies game!” (Not as exciting as it sounds, it was a bar that they frequent so the bartender actually kind of knows me.)

Yes, I had my five seconds of glory being on television, but, the fun didn’t stop there for me.

On July 25th, I went to the Rockies Fan Photo Day, which was amazing!! I stood in line waiting for my friends, JENN AND MARY who, to no one’s surprise, were late… and by “no one’s surprise,” I mean mine. A girl later approached me and our conversation went something like this:

“Are you Emily from MLBlogs?”

“Yes!”

“I read your blog!”

I was about to be really embarrassed if this was a person who had commented on my posts and I never commented on hers.

“Oh, really? Thank you so much, that’s awesome! Do you write a blog?”

“No, but I go through and read some of them.”

How did she recognize me?

It was the Garrett Atkins shirt and the Red Sox bag, my indistinguishable trademarks.

It was like one small step for me, one giant step for bloggers!

Giant Step for Bloggers.jpgSo, Emily was recognized by Emily at Fan Photo Day.

Emily squared.JPGIt was pretty spectacular, I was really stoked; and since Emily, I know you’ll be reading this, I really appreciate it. Thank you so much for reading, it’s greatly, greatly appreciated. I hope we meet up again at a Rockies game. Look for me in the Pavilion, that’s where I usually sit.

There it is, I had my five seconds of glory for ten seconds. The way I see it, that’s it, I’ve used mine up, so I probably won’t have any more moments of glory in my life.

With that in mind, thanks to everyone who reads my blog! I like writing them, reading and commenting on others, and getting comments. It’s cool to do.

Okay, so Rockies Fan Photo Day was AMAZING!!!

I got my picture with Garrett Atkins, as you may have noticed from my new profile picture. It went down like this:

“Oh my god, he’s coming!!!”

Garrett Atkins 0014.JPG“Hi…”

“Hi.”

Garrett Atkins 0015.JPG“You’re like… my favorite player in the majors…”

“Thanks.”

And that was it. Possibly the greatest five seconds of my life.

I expect that throughout the rest of that time, Garrett Atkins heard, “You’re my favorite player,” or “I’m your biggest fan” at least 400 times. I don’t expect that mine stuck out to him or that he would even remember me telling him. What’s important is that I know I told him, and I actually meant it. That’s not to say that no one else who met him and told him that that day didn’t mean it, but, well, I guess you all know how ridiculously crazy I am about him.

For the most part, Fan Photo Day was uneventful. It was: players come up, take a picture with you, leave. Some things to report:

Ryan Spilborghs is still elusive to me. I was so close to getting a picture with him and then the people running the event ushered him elsewhere. I couldn’t even believe that, he was like, five people away from me. It was a little heartbreaking.

Ryan Spilborghs 0004.JPGI met Tom Runnells, and he was hilarious. I’d heard that he was a really nice guy from Tommy, but Runnells now sticks out in my memory. He approached and I was so excited I was like, “Tom Runnells!” And he was like, “Yes?” And I said, “Oh… nothing, I’m just excited.” So I shook his hand and he was like, “You can stop shaking my hand now,” although I wasn’t really shaking his hand anymore, he was just shaking mine and then kept joking that I wouldn’t let go of his hand, even though it was the… opposite… or… maybe you had to be there.

Tom Runnells.JPGI accidentally stepped on Josh Fogg’s foot and had a mild freako
ut about it. It wasn’t really stepping on his foot, it was more like I kind of tripped on his foot. Anyway, he was cool about it.

Josh Fogg.JPGMy friend Jenn tripped and used Dexter Fowler’s jersey to help hold herself up. I find that far more hilarious that she used his own jersey.

Dexter Fowler 0001.JPGI really wanted pictures with Jason Hammel, Huston Street, Todd Helton, Clint Barmes, Brad Hawpe, and Omar Quintanilla, but they are now elusive to me as well.

Other stuff:

I have decided that I am in need of a vacation from not going to school and, until recently, unemployment. Therefore, I am headed up to New York to see my friend. I was trying to work it out so I could go to Washington DC first, but I wasn’t thrilled about the idea of heading there by myself and having to pay for my own hotel. It’s too bad airports don’t let you store stuff in lockers these days, or at least the ones in Washington DC don’t.

I curse Washington DC for not doing that because I have never been to another ballpark, let alone a ballpark that my boys are playing at! Oh well, plans didn’t work out for that, I’ll survive.

So, since DC isn’t happening, I will be headed straight to New York and once up there, straight to Boston. Up to Boston for what you might ask? A RED SOX / YANKEES GAME!!

Yes, I am going to witness the GREATEST rivalry in the history of sports. I am, in a word, stoked. I will cheer loud for the Red Sox and won’t worry about getting beat up since I’ll be in Boston. I guess the biggest concern is being in New York with my Red Sox jersey bag, maybe I’ll get beat up there. That may have sounded like I was too eager to get beaten up. Don’t be fooled, I am not eager to get beat up.

While in Boston, I hope to meet up with none other than Julia over at Julia’s Rants. It will be EPIC. As disappointed as I am that things didn’t seem to work out for DC, I’m pretty stoked to head up to New York and Boston. Any advice?

That’s my big news. I’ll leave you with Rockies pictures that I got from Fan Photo Day:

Aaron Cook:
Aaron Cook 0002.JPGChris Iannetta:
Chris Iannetta 0002.JPGIan Stewart:Ian Stewart 0004.JPGJason Marquis:Jason Marquis 0002.JPGJeff Francis:Jeff Francis.JPGJuan Rincon:Juan Rincon.JPGYorvit TorrealbaYorvit Torrealba 0002.JPGMatt Daley:Matt Daley.JPGJeff Francis and Seth Smith (quite possibly my favorite picture):Seth Smith 0004.JPG

Hot N Cold

Just a warning, this will be a long one.

I think at some point, we all believe that there’s this one song that was written about us. It fits everything; it’s perfect in every way and describes your mood, the way you feel, like that song and that moment were destined to be together.

Like the lyrics:

Hot N Cold.jpgYou’re hot then you’re cold
You’re yes then you’re no
You’re in then you’re out
You’re up then you’re down

While I’m not a big fan of this song in the first place, it seems to reflect the way the Rockies are playing as of late.

I had the privilege of going to this entire series against Atlanta, and those lyrics pretty much describe exactly how the Rockies played during that series. So, let’s rewind to day one.

I was scheduled to meet Tom, we would catch some batting practice, and then head to the dugout to try and get some autographs. As usual, I was running late and got to the gate to find Tom waiting for me. We picked up some Rockpile tickets and headed inside. Batting practice was pretty casual, unlike Don, I’m not coordinated enough to catch a ball that isn’t coming right to me (or maybe even catch a ball in the first place, I haven’t been posed with that opportunity yet), so Tom and I just kind of hung out, but ready to catch a ball. They opened up the rest of the stadium and we headed over to the dugout.

It was Tom’s mission to get Todd Helton’s autograph on his picture of the 2000th hit. I had the fortune of being set up with a pretty amazing shot of Garrett Atkins, courtesy Mr. Walsh. Both of us were lusting after these players’ autographs, and lo and behold, neither of us got it.

We sat in some pretty spectacular $4 seats and sat back to watch the amazingness that is the Rockies.

Unfortunately, Cook was a little “cold” that night and was struggling to get outs. He would last 5.2 innings and give up nine hits. However, our hitting was “hot.”

Aaron Cook 0001.JPGTom and I were discussing Garrett Atkins and Ian Stewart, and Tom said that Stewart’s bat needed to come alive tonight, since it appeared he’d been struggling. Stewart didn’t fail to deliver, hitting a longball and driving in Tulowitzki. Well… guess Stewie overheard Tom.

Ian Stewart 0002.JPGIt didn’t take long while all this was happening for me to find none other than Garrett Atkins sitting in the dugout.

Garrett Atkins 0008.JPGYou should’ve seen this one coming.

The game rolled on, and for me, this next moment was the defining moment. Stewart walked, and a pitch hit Iannetta, then, Garrett Atkins came up. “Oh please, Atty, I know you’re good for it.” A lot of people have lost confidence in Garrett Atkins, if you’ve been reading my blog for any amount of time, you would know that I haven’t, and you would know that I’ve said that over and over with the secret hope that Garrett Atkins will come across it some day.

Garrett Atkins 0006.JPGAnd Atty, well, he didn’t let me down. In the bottom of the eighth, he doubled to deep left and brought in Stewie and Iannetta. It was epic. No “FAIL” on Atty, take that world, Rockies are now ahead, and they would end it coming out on top. Also, as you can see, I was a little too excited for my own good that Atkins was up and couldn’t hold my camera still.

After the game, I couldn’t wait to get back to the ballpark the next day; I was practically counting down the minutes.

So the next day rolled around, and off I was to go meet Mr. Walsh once again. I was also meeting a couple of other friends there; it was a t-shirt giveaway of one of our All Stars, Brad Hawpe. My friends wanted to catch batting practice so we headed over to the Rockpile gate to meet them so I could give them their tickets. Well, there was someone working there who took their job very seriously and wouldn’t let us get in line with our friends. That turned out to be okay because it was necessary to try and get that Todd Helton autograph for Tom.

We got into the stadium and grabbed our Brad Hawpe shirt and headed down to the dugout. Iannetta, as usual, was the first one out. Tom gave me some points on being aggressive to get autographs, I’m way too shy for life. But, I managed to land three:

Chris Iannetta,

Chris Iannetta 0001.JPGClint Barmes,

Clint Barmes 0002.JPGand Ian Stewart.

Ian Stewart 0003.JPGThen, what was this? Garrett Atkins was in the dugout and appeared to be signing some things for people.

“Go over and ask him to sign your picture.” Tom had confidence that I could get Atkins’ autograph, I did not.

“Um… well…”

“Go quick! He’s signing stuff!”

Our conversation was somewhere along the lines of that. So, I headed over to the dugout and was way to shy to try and get Atkins autograph, then the National Anthem started and I was S.O.L.

“You probably coulda had it if you headed over like… five minutes earlier.”

Curse my shyness and me.

Well, yet again Todd Helton’s 2000th hit went unautographed, as did my picture. We headed over to right field to find my friends.

For the night, our pitching was “yes” but our hitting was “no.”

Ubaldo Jimenez pitched six innings, which doesn’t sound impressive, but had eight strikeouts during those six innings.

Ubaldo Jimenez 0002.JPGWe lacked in run support and our only run on the board came from a homer from ol’ reliable, Todd Helton.

Todd Helton 0006.JPGThe scary moment of the night wasn’t the lightning, but was when Alan Embree had a ball driven into his leg. He was on the ground, shaking and sweating. He was taken off the field and the Rockies were back to business. Embree ended the night, and possibly his season, with a broken tibia. Although Tracy said he’s making a go
od recovery and may even be back by the end of the season, it’s still up in the air. Get well soon, Alan.

Alan Embree 0001.JPGOn Saturday, it was time for the Rockies to bounce back, and they did… well… almost.

Jason Marquis was pitching, however, his pitching was “out” and hitting was “in”… kinda.

Jason Marquis 0001.JPGMaybe it was the All Star nerves, or the relaxation of being the first pitcher this season to get 11 wins, but Marquis was certainly not on his game. He struggled for six innings and ended the night with 97 pitches.

The Rockies runs didn’t come until the seventh inning, that’s when the bats started to come alive.

Troy Tulowitzki homered to deep left, that kick started the excitement.

Troy Tulowitzki 0008.JPGIan Stewart doubled into deep left center, after which Seth Smith would single to center, driving in Ian Stewart.

Seth Smith 0002.JPGGarrett Atkins singled moving Seth Smith to third and on a wild pitch, Smith made it home.

Garrett Atkins 0009.JPGThat would be the end of the rally, and yet again, the Rockies would take another beating from the Braves.

I went to the game with my mom that day and she scored us some Wells Fargo Club Level seats. Although it was nice to sit up there, I found the area to seem… off. The woman next to me had on pearls, and not that there’s anything wrong with wearing pearls, but they go with a specific type of outfit, so you can guess that she wasn’t in a baseball jersey. Not only that, but she was drinking wine. Maybe it’s just me but… really, who drinks wine at a ballgame? That’s like all those girls who come wearing CFM heels and mini skirts. Who does that?

Wells Fargo Club.JPGWhile I appreciated club level for what it was, I found the setting as a whole to be rather pretentious. Pretentious may not be the right word, but it’s the word that comes to mind. I didn’t really feel comfortable yelling at Jason Marquis or telling the ump he was clearly blind.

I went to bed Saturday night thinking that I wasn’t going to the game the next morning. My wonderful mother had other plans in store for me.

Thanks to StubHub, she had scored us tickets 16 rows behind the Rockies dugout. I arrived at the game, eager to find where we were sitting and see who was playing. To my surprise, Todd Helton was out of the lineup, and who was at first… literally, right by where I was sitting? That’s right, Garrett Atkins. It was… amazing. Having confidence that Atkins would be in the lineup, I wore my Atkins shirt four days in a row, and I was glad to see him so close to me.

Garrett Atkins 0011.JPGSunday was an afternoon that our pitching was “down” but our hitting was “up.”

Jason “Stop – Hammel Time” Hammel had found some great success with the club and was starting to get into the groove of things, except for that day. That day, he looked like an over zealous rookie.

Jason Hammel 0001.JPGJason Hammel pitched a total of three innings and gave up five runs. It was a rough afternoon for him, no doubt.

The Rockies lineup, however, would make up for it. Starting with our All Star Hawper who homered to deep left field.

Brad Hawpe 0007.JPGAtty would bring in Barmes.

Garrett Atkins 0012.JPGTroy Tulowitzki hit a longball to deep right.

Troy Tulowitzki 0009.JPGThe Rockies decided to put in Chris Iannetta and take out Yorvit Torrealba. In the meantime, Ryan Spilborghs did some catching… which looks weird. But, it was the closest I’ve ever been to Spilly.

Ryan Spilborghs 0002.JPGSeth Smith would hit a longball and bring in Barmes with him.

Seth Smith 0003.JPGRyan Spilborghs came into the game, not as a catcher, and doubled to deep right center, driving in Ian Stewart.

Ryan Spilborghs 0003.JPGIn the middle of the ninth, the game was all tied up. Huston Street came in to pitch, and he held off the Braves.

Huston Street 0003.JPGThe rest of the game, well, that was up to our All Star, and he proved why he is an All Star bringing Seth Smith home on a center field walk off double. It was a phenomenal game.

Brad Hawpe 0008.JPGWhat a way to see off Brad Hawpe.

Brad Hawpe 0009.JPGThe Rockies and winning and the Rockies and I, well, I guess it seems like, “we fight, we break up, we kiss, we make up.”

Rock pile 0001.JPGRock<br />
pile 0002.JPG” src=”<a href=http://mlblogsdeconstructingthoughts.files.wordpress.com/2009/07/rock20pile200002.jpg&#8221; class=”mt-image-center” style=”text-align:center;display:block;margin:0 auto 20px;” height=”436″ width=”536″ />

Roxtars

Well, we all just wanna be big rockstars
And live in hilltop houses, drivin’ fifteen cars
The girls come easy and the drugs come cheap
We’ll all stay skinny ’cause we just won’t eat

Brad Hawpe0004.JPGWhen Brad Hawpe takes the field to hit, he arrives at the plate with that song blaring. The lefty gears up for a swing and more often than not will produce a hit. He’s one of the best players on the Colorado Rockies, he’s got the strongest and most accurate arm in our outfield, he’s a rockstar for the Rockies, and now, he’s going to be an All Star.

On July 5th as the Rockies were being introduced, the announcer said, “2009 All Star Brad Hawpe!!” I was stoked, my Hawper was in the All Star game!! As he took the fieldBrad Hawpe0005.JPG I yelled, “Yeah Brad Hawpe!! I voted for you 250 times!!” The guy in front of me looked at me at first like I was crazy, and then nodded approvingly. I sat at my computer and voted 250 times because in my eyes, no one deserved the All Star game like Brad Hawpe. I didn’t really expect Hawpe to hear me tell him that I voted for him 250 times, and maybe if he did, he would think I needed a life (which is true), but I sure hope he knows that he deserves it.

Yes, I was pushing and pushing to get Brad Hawpe into the All Star game, it was something I put up on Twitter, Facebook, and advertised in my blog. Even if he isn’t a starter, I’m so proud of him for making it to his first All Star game.

Another face we’ll see in the All Star game is Jason Marquis. As of tonight, the first pitcher in the majors this season to win 11 games. Last season, that was the number of wins he had… total. The mesh between the Rockies and Marquis has been unbelievable, and it’ll be exciting to see what he can do for the National League.

Jeff Huson.JPGIn other news, I finally got my own camera!! And… I went a little trigger happy at the games. I ended July 4th and 5th with a picture count of 194. I didn’t take any pictures of the fireworks because I killed my battery taking so many pictures.

On July 4th, I caught one of my favorite guys from FSN, Jeff Huson, doing the Rockies Pre-Game Show… it’s now possible that he thinks I’m stalking him. I was really just trying to get a good picture of him, but then every time I was looking over that way, he happened to look my way, and once he gave me a weird look. He might think I’m a weird creeper now. But just so you know Jeff Huson, I’m not.

Obviously I didn’t put in all 194 pictures, but here are some that I thoroughly enjoy. I’m still working out the kinks of the camera, trying to get the pictures to a smaller size. Until then, enjoy!!

Brad Hawpe0002.JPG

Ryan Spilborghs0001.JPGTroy Tulowitzki0003.JPG

4ALS.JPG

Garrett Atkins0004.JPG

Huston Street0001.JPGFlyover.JPGBrad Hawpe0003.JPG
Garrett Atkins0001.JPG
Todd Helton0001.JPGTroy Tulowitzki0001.JPGSeth Smith0001.JPGTodd Helton0003.JPGTroy Tulowitzki0006.JPG

The Merry Month o’ June

“I wonder what it’d be like to live in a world where it was always June.” L.M. Montgomery

Right now, that’s the question that’s been stuck in my brain. It’s been a wonderful month of June for the Rockies, and a warm welcome after the tragedy that was May.

Welcome Mat.jpgThe Rockies managed to really turn it around this month winning 20 of their last 26 games, a total 180 from May where they won 12 of 29.

Ryan Spilborghs46.jpgJason Hammel.jpgAaron Cook.jpgDuring that month it was tough to think, “it’s still early, they can turn it around.” It was a hopeful belief, but the way things were going, it was hard to find the confidence to believe such a thing. Well, the Rockies seemed to have no trouble proving the thought right and the doubt wrong. It’s beenJorge de la Rosa.JPG beautiful, three of the top four NL win leaders from the month of June are coming from the Rockies: Aaron Cook, the winningest Rockie; Jason Hammel, who posted a 1.99 ERA during June; and Jorge de la Rosa, who didn’t have a win until the month of June rolled around.

The only series of interleague play that didn’t really look spectacular was against the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim. The Rockies swept the Mariners, took the Tampa Bay series, lost the series to the Angels, and most recently swept Oakland.
 Huston Street22.jpg
Matt Holliday.jpgThe Oakland sweep was bittersweet, while it was good to see Matt Holliday again, it was sad to see him sporting the green and yellow jersey. As much as I wanted to see him succeed at the plate, I wanted to see him fail. I wanted to see him hit that longball, but I wanted to see Carlos Gonzalez chase it down. I enjoyed Huston Street pitching (although I wanted him to have an off day before he headed to LA) but I wanted to see a match up between the slugger we lost and the essential closer we gained. While I missed Matt Holliday, the guys we got have proved themselves indispensable, well, at least the ones I’ve seen. I don’t know how Greg Smith is doing.

While in Oakland, Gonzalez had seven at bats, four hits, and two walks. While he is having so much success, it seems that Dexter Fowler has begun to struggle with a bat. Of Fowler’s nine at bats, he has five strikeouts and one run.
 Garrett Atkins66.jpg
Ryan Spilborghs47.jpgToday when Jim Tracy changed up the lineup, I wasn’t too happy. After the success that Ryan Spilborghs had the first game and Garrett Atkins the first two, I was a bit surprised not to see their names. But, who was I to question the skipper? Jim Tracy is 21-7 since he took over the Rockies and that 21st win came tonight. Well, it’s not like I haven’t said it before, but I’m still pulling for Atkins and Spilborghs.

As we approach this series against the Dodgers, hopefully the month of June will continue to stay kind to the Rockies who are now 7.5 games behind the Dodgers.

Emily Tries to Meet a Player… FAIL ensues

FAIL:

Soccer Fail.jpg
Tackle Fail.jpgPhillies Fail.jpg
Catcher Fail.jpg“Come meet Ryan Spilborghs at Honda of Greeley at 10:30 this Saturday the 13!”

Honda of Greeley.pngI always stop whatever I’m doing to watch any Rockies commercial or any commercial with a Rockie in it. So when a Honda of Greeley commercial came on and I discovered I could have the chance to meet one of my absolute favorite players, I practically peed my pants. I could meet Ryan Spilborghs?!?! It was too good to be true.

My friends and I checked the Honda of Greeley website and there it was, saying we could meet Ryan Spilborghs. That was the plan, we were stoked for Saturday.

Tulo2.jpgI fathomed that it would be crowded in the beginning, so we decided to go around 11:30. When Troy Tulowitzki came, he was there for about two hours, so I knew we would be okay if we showed up around that time. We got there and looked around, there was a tent and lots of cars with Ryan Spilborghs on them, but no Ryan Spilborghs.

Maybe he’s inside…

We took a quick peak inside, no Spilly. On our way out, I asked someone if he was here, he asked another guy and the second guy said, “Nope, he left a few minutes ago.”

“Oh…”

“Now, I can’t sign a baseball, but I can get you into a new car.”

“Um… no thanks, I’m far too poor to afford a new car right now. I just really wanted to meet Ryan Spilborghs. The ad said he’d be here at 10:30″

“Well, he’s got a game tonight.”

You incompetent man, do you think I didn’t know that?!
Ryan Spilborghs34.jpg
The high pressure car salesman continued to talk. “Yeah, he came early this morning, and he brought his puppy too. A pit bull named Gibson. He was here for about three hours or so. If you’d’ve woken up earlier, you would’ve met him.”

Are you freaking kidding me, Mr. High Pressure Salesman, who now I think is mean for telling me about how awesome it was when Spil was here and now he’s not?!

Ryan Spilborghs43.jpg“Well, we didn’t sleep in, but we figured he’d be here for at least an hour after the ad said he would.”

“Yeah, he came early.”

Hmm… no kidding.

“Okay, well… thanks.”

“Yeah, you shouldn’t’ve slept in,” he called to us after we were walking away.

Apparently he didn’t get the message that we didn’t sleep in and came when the ad of his dealership said that he would be here.

I managed to meet Matt Holliday before he was traded away (and get a lovely autograph on my Holliday shirt), and so with all the trade rumors about Spilly, I thought it absolutely necessary to meet him.

Ryan Spilborghs is without a doubt one of the coolest players the Rockies have, or so I’ve heard. At this point in time, I can really go off speculation based on the testimony that I’ve been told. Apparently he’s incredibly genuine, charismatic, funny, and really cares about his fans. I would have loved to meet him, but… FAIL. It was probably more like an Epic FAIL:

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Eleven=Heaven

The 2009 Rockies have now tied their club record for longest streak. For those of us who remember, it was back in 2007 when the Rockies had that run. Sometimes it’s hard to be a Rockies fan… well, that isn’t quite phrased right. Sometimes it’s hard to be a Rockies fan because nobody really seems to appreciate the Rockies. When it comes to this team, getting the attention of the media is like a white person picking out a Korean among Chinese people (I can only make that reference because I know), it just doesn’t happen.

So when I saw this:

Nine Streak.pngI was stoked!

The Rockies are on a phenomenal streak! Two games below .500 and they’ve worked their tail off and are entirely deserving.

It’s unfortunate though that it takes a firing of a manager, an eleven game winning streak, and a team that has some All Star players to get some attention.

Eleven Streak.pngIt’s amazing to see the Rockies on an incredible run! Garrett Atkins was finally in the lineup today, and it seems that all that bench warming gave him some thinking time. Atkins had a pretty successful day of hitting, he looked more like a contact hitter than a power hitter, but right now, a hit is a hit. I’m glad that he’s getting back on his feet and hopefully will have a more consistent swing. I’ve been pulling for him for a while now, it’s about time he showed me that he is still a power hitter.

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Emily Goes to the Broncos Fan Fair

Recently, I accompanied my friend out to meet some players from her favorite team, the Denver Broncos. It was a lovely Saturday as we headed out for the Broncos Fan Fair, my friend Jenn all giddy with excitement, and I’d like to think that I was a bit calmer. If roles were reversed and we were meeting the Rockies, I’d probably be as crazy as she was that day…

We got there about 45 minutes before the doors opened so we could get into some lines early. Sunscreen was applied, you’ll see in pictures later that I have a lovely farmers tan from a Rockies game I attended. We entered Invesco Field at Mile High and were off to the photo line.

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Unfortunately, when you enter a line to meet some players, you really have no idea who you’ll be meeting. So, once we saw whom it was, we decided that they weren’t very important to meet (I know, we’re jerks) and went off to another line. Now, apparently the Fan Fair was set up a little bit differently than last year and you got autographs and pictures in the same line.

Nic Clemons Kenny Peterson Josh McDaniels.jpgAs we approached the first line, we saw the people who would be awaiting us: Nic Clemons, Kenny Peterson, and head coach Josh McDaniels. To me, pictures are more important than autographs, unfortunately, since things were a little different this season, we realized that we didn’t have anything for them to autograph, except the program.

The line moved slowly as we got closer and closer to Nic Clemons, and my friend Jenn was, well… freaking out is a modest way to put it. We finally got there and being the awkward girl that she is, Jenn yelled at them, “I DON’T HAVE ANYTHING FOR YOU TO AUTOGRAPH!!” as she slid her program toward them. They were a bit taken aback by this, but were perhaps used Fan Fair Program.jpgto crazy people. Then as they were passing her program down to each other she also yelled, “PICTURE!!” Needless to say, it was slightly awkward… for her, hilarious for me though.

I got down to Josh McDaniels and looked at him, what was I going to say? “Way to screw up that situation with Cutler.” “You are quite a young coach.” “You’ll have a lot to prove this season.” “Hi.” Let’s face it, McDaniels, he’s well… he’s pretty good looking, so I decided it might be a good idea to try and make a good impression on him rather than a bitter one. As he passed my program back to me, I smiled at him and said, “Good luck this season,” and then he said thanks… and he winked at me. Or at least I would like to think he winked at me and his eye wasn’t just twitching or something. But my heart almost stopped.

It was all over after that; I was hooked by these attractive football players and was now, although on a far inferior playing field to my friend Jenn, I could at least relate. The first player we got to meet was Brian Dawkins. Before I got my picture with him, all his children were telling him how much they loved him and it was so cute… but also awkward because people were trying to move the line along, but I didn’t want to interrupt his time with his kids.

Brian Dawkins.jpgAfter that, we decided maybe we needed something for them to autograph, it would also help with Jenn’s yelling situation. So, the only “affordable” thing was a hat. The OCD person in me is kind of mad about the blue signature, but oh well.

Fan Fair Hat.jpgLater, we ended up meeting probably one of the most beautiful men I have ever seen in my life. Men aren’t commonly referred to as “beautiful,” but Josh Barrett is an exception. I mean… wow.

Josh Barrett2.jpgJosh Barrett3.jpgAt one point, Jenn got all excited because she thought that he was smiling at her, but then she realized that I was taking a picture. Sorry to steal your thunder, Jenn.Josh Barrett.jpgNext players I got a picture with were Andra Davis…

Andra Davis.jpg… and Ronald Fields (who I totally would not want to piss off).

Ronald Fields.jpgWell, thanks to SPF 30 (I usually never go higher than 8), I didn’t tan at all and still have a farmers tan. Boo.

Who Are These Guys?

In 2007 an issue of Sporting News came to my apartment. On the cover was none other than Mr. Matt “Everyday’s a holiday with you, Matt Holliday” Holliday. The headline from the magazine read, “Who Are These Guys??”

Brad Hawpe29.jpgI think that’s what all of baseball (or at least anyone who has any clue who the Rockies are) are asking themselves right now.

The team that’s been playing right now isn’t the same team that started this season. With the recent sweep of the Cardinals, a series 2-0 lead in Milwaukee, and now two come-from-behind wins, I’m wondering where this team has been all season. I mean, really, a sweep against Albert Pujols’ team?! It’s Albert “I am God” Pujols!! The Rockies have never swept a series in Milwaukee, and I’m certainly not going to jinx it and say they are, but now theGarrett Atkins68.jpg team is playing to their potential, now my boys are playing like they want it.

Except for one. It’s about time for a certain favorite third baseman of mine to get out of this funk. I want him back; I want my Garrett Atkins to be hitting like Garrett Atkins again. I’m glad Ian Stewart has gotten some time at third, it was incredibly deserved and he’s an amazing player, but yesterday he struck out twice and once today. It’s about time for Atkins to get some at bats and get some hits along with those AB. The best I
can hope for: he knows that not everyone is losing the faith in him.

Garrett Atkins: Triple Threat, Not Triple A

Tonight, Rockies third baseman/love of my life Garrett Atkins proved why he belongs in the majors.

Garrett Atkins45.jpgRecent articles had me speculating if Atkins was going to be traded or sent down to the Triple-A Sky Sox.

Earlier today, my friend called me to wish me luck on my job interview. I told her that my stomach was hurting me, but I wasn’t sure if it was because I was nervous for my interview or because I had just read about the possibility of Atkins heading toward the Springs. Earlier I felt fine, I wasn’t nervous for my interview, I was prepared, and once I read that news, I actually felt sick.

The very name Garrett Atkins used to strike fear into the pitchers he faced. He was the guy who pitchers would walk to get to the five hole. Not the case last night. Last night, Brad Hawpe was walked not once, but twice, so that pitchers could get to Atkins, who struck out both times.

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However, tonight was the Garrett Atkins before his season long slump. Tonight was the Atkins that struck fear into the pitchers he faced. Tonight Garrett Atkins played like… well… Garrett Atkins.

Garrett Atkins58.jpgWhen Atkins hit his first longball, I was stoked, practically dancing around like a giddy school girl. FINALLY!! The last time he hit a homer was back in April, April 25th. It was one of the most deserved hits to ever come to a player. 

Garrett Atkins36.jpgThe second homerun, I was elated, euphoric, ecstatic, any other word that is synonymous with those. I was in awe of my favorite player, it may have been just as big of a moment for him as it was for me; most of Colorado may have turned their back on Garrett, but I held the faith. Before this, it was getting to the point where I would have sold my soul to get Atkins back on track. You think I’m joking… I’m not.

Now, by no means is Atkins “cured” of his season long slump, but now he has the confidence that he still has the power to hit a homer. I feel like his problems are similar to those of David Ortiz. The slump that both players have dug themselves into raises the “self-doubt” question in their mind. They know what they need to do, but they’re unable to execute a play, leaving them wondering if they’ll ever get a hit, a double, a homerun, anything. If Atkins keeps this up, he’ll get out of whatever slump he’s in.

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The Rockies could’ve lost tonight, don’t get me wrong, I’m glad they didn’t. But it was just as important to me to see Atkins hit those longballs. Had they lost, I still probably would have been as excited as I am.

Now, two homers in a game doesn’t by any means really make Garrett Atkins a triple threat. In fact, really, I just tried to use that as kind of a play on words, that’s about as far as my creativity spans. Since his slump, I’ve been reassuring myself that Atkins is just keeping me waiting for that perfect moment where he’ll hit a grand slam or he’ll do like he did today and get two homeruns. I talk about how much I am in love with him, but I really do value Atkins for the player that he is. In his past seasons, he’s never failed to deliver, and his slump this season makes it difficult. Players go through slumps, and it’s because he’s such a big slugger that it’s like he’s not allowed to. But I trust, through thick and thin, that Atkins will get back to his old self and raise his average to above .200. How unthreatening did that just sound? To above .200? Wow…

Tonight, the 10-3 victory over the Astros was a collaboration of the entire Rockies team. Jason Hammel looked great out on the mound; he’s been struggling in the past, but looked great tonight. Run support needed to come from somewhere besides Todd Helton and Brad Hawpe, and it did. Every position player had a hit tonight and every position player played like they wanted a win. Ryan Spilborghs, my other favorite player, hit a longball and tracked down a ball up the hill of Minute Maid Park.

Ryan Spilborghs22.jpgTonight was exactly what the Rockies needed, a win.

Finally, I’ve been having problems getting online. I was finally able to get online to log into MLBlogs (fortunately, I don’t have to be connected to the internet to just type), had to go unplug and replug my router in order to upload pictures (I actually had to unplug it and plug it back in for each picture), then had to unplug and replug it in again to publish it. I swear I want to read your blogs, but I can’t get online for more than five minutes. Hopefully a new router is on it’s way and then I can catch up on everything I’ve been missing.

Photos courtesy: baseball photos

Emily Goes to a REAL Coors Field Experience

Parking for the Rockies game: $10
Price for the seats we were sitting in: $35 (for whoever actually had to pay for them)
Nachos with questionable cheese: $5.25
A day at the park with the Rockpile Ranter: Priceless.

When I e-mailed Don about hitting up a game together, he had an extra ticket and told me he’d give me the “real Coors Field experience.” Let me tell you, he absolutely didn’t fail to deliver.

It started out with a meeting outside the Rockpile gate. I eagerly walked up to Don excited to go into the park and start my day. He presented me with a glove, this glove:

Emily and glove.jpgMy first ever glove!! Good thing it’s all broken in, because I wouldn’t have any idea what to do. We headed into the ballpark where the people who check bags actually complimented me on my Red Sox jersey bag. WHOA! That blew my mind right there. This was totally going to be a good day because for the first time, I wasn’t harassed about it. We ran up the stairs and were on our way to some batting practice.

Don gave me some tips for catching balls:

  1. Don’t catch it right in front of your face because if you miss it… it’ll hit… well… your face.
  2. Try to stay between the bleachers, you’ll have easier access toward hits.
  3. Catch it in the pocket between your thumb and index finger, because if it hits your hand… it’ll hurt. Bad.

I also learned that there are certain unspoken rules to snagging balls. For example, Don was about to get this ball when some guy stuck his glove right in front of Don’s. Don’t do that. I have more unspoken rules to learn, but I’ll get there someday.

So we’re just hanging out standing there, nothing really coming my way. I stayed in the area where I was because I for sure wasn’t coordinated enough to keep my eye on the ball and climb stairs. Anyway, I’m watching when this homerun batting practice ball comes a few bleachers in front of me. “No way I’m going to get this ball.”

I have a lot to learn about catching a ball first of all. I have no idea what I’m doing. Going down stairs is kind of a big deal because I’m trying to keep my eye on the ball, but there’s stairs… and I always have to watch when I’m going down stairs or I’m going to trip and eat it… hard. So this ball is coming and it bounces off one of Don’s friend’s glove and lands right in front of me. I out race two dudes (not children) and grab the ball. My first batting practice ball that I, myself got… ever! A day in history!!

Emily's first BP ball.jpgDon would also snag a ball and practice would end shortly after that. It was off to the first base line to try and grab some autographs. I really, really, really wanted Garrett Atkins’ autograph, but no dice. In fact, I didn’t get anyone’s autograph. It’s possible I’m too passive aggressive to actually successfully get an autograph. People just kind of cut in front of me and I just kind of let them, plus I don’t just want to shove my baseball in some players face, so I failed to get anyone’s autograph. No big deal, I was standing so close to Clint Barmes, it was amazing (the pictures were taken with my phone… so… they kind of suck).

Barmes.jpg
Barmes2.jpgI could see Garrett Atkins getting stretched. What I wouldn’t give for that job…

Atkins stretching.jpgSome where along the lines, Don got a ticket for seats up by the third base line (the phone doesn’t even do the seats justice)… where a certain, favorite third baseman plays… ehem… So we sat there and I admired Garrett Atkins… I mean the certain, favorite third baseman.

Ball park seats.jpgHowever, for the first two innings, I couldn’t even focus because of how excited I was about the ball that I had gotten… like… two hours earlier. Yeah, I was still excited about that.

The game was pretty tame toward the beginning and Don snagged some great pictures. Unfortuately, he was still moving and had to head out during the seventh inning, so I hung out by myself. At that time, the Padres were leading 6-4. In the bottom of the seventh, the Rockies would tie it up. The ninth inning was where the magic happened.

Rockies May 2009 081.JPGHuston Street gave up a run and the Padres were leading in the top of the ninth. He was able to shut down the inning, and the Rockies came up to bat.

At first it didn’t look too good. Dexter Fowler struck out looking. Clint Barmes came up, who was moved to the two spot and, by the way, has done great there. He singled to left field after which he would steal second. Next up was Sweet T, not to be confused with Sweetie. Helton would ground out to third. Two outs, next up to bat was Atkins. I could only hope that my Atkins shirt would ensure him that he had at least one fan left. Atkins singled to shallow center and drove in Barmes. The score is tied 7-7. Brad Hawpe comes to the plate, Atkins on first. Brad HawpeBrad Hawpe15.jpgdoubled to center, and Garrett Atkins scored!!! At this point, I was screaming like a tween at a Jonas Brothers concert. I was so excited and was text messaging with my friend Mary the entire time. I watched as the Rockies celebrated and then Garrett Atkins was pulled off to the side for quick interview.

I told my friend Mary that he was being interviewed, and she responded with:

“I know! He is talking on TV right now. He said all thanks goes to his best fan Emily.”

Even though it’s pretty obvious he didn’t say that, I smiled the whole walk to my
car… which I ended up searching for for like… ten minutes (I wasn’t smiling during that part).

Don had left me a voice message during the game, but it was way too loud to answer. He heard that Atkins got his hit and I was going to call him back and tell him how amazing it was, but I was actually a little hoarse from screaming.

So, there it is. My real Coors Field experience, all courtesy: The Rockpile Ranter.

Photos courtesy: me

Video courtesy: TheRockpileRanter

Nicknames

Earlier, I was starting to think that I was the jinx of the Rockies. I’ve been to four games, and the Rockies have lost at every one. I think it would help if I went to more games, then maybe I’d increase my odds of being at a winning one… or decrease the Rockies chance of winning… one of those. However, after these games against the Pirates, I can practically rest assured that I am NOT the jinx of the Rockies.

Rockies May 2009 071.JPGThe good news, on May 14th I attended a game and snagged some great pictures of Garrett Atkins. Despite the fact that he’s going through possibly the biggest slump of his life, Clint Hurdle started him. I’d like to think that it was for me… ya know, whatever gets ya through the day, right? I was literally less than twenty feet away from Atkins. I could’ve screamed louder than a tween at a Jonas Brothers concert… but I didn’t.

Fortunately for me, I attended the game with my mom. Now, my mom isn’t much of a cheering section, in fact, for the most part, she has no idea what’s going on. I have two friends, however, that would have loved to be at that game with me, sitting less than 20 feet from one of my favorite players.

It’s not because they would care that I was sitting so close to the man that I’m practically in love with or that we were in possibly some of the greatest seats ever or even that you’re so close to the action you practically breathe in nothing but baseball. No, my friends would have loved to be there for a different reason.
Ryan Spilborghs28.jpg
They seem to be sad that I don’t give them their props in my blog, so, let me begin by going way back to last season. My friend Mary and I were at the game sitting in the pavilion in row four. Ryan Spilborghs was playing center at the time. I don’t remember if he was batting or made a great catch or what happened, but I yelled (and I am 100% sure of this) “GO SPILLY!!!!!” That’s Ryan Spilborgh’s nickname that pretty much everyone knows and just about everyone calls him. So, I yelled “Go Spilly!” and my friend looks at me and says, “What did you just say?!?!” And I looked at her and said, “Go Spilly…?” and she was like, “Oh, I thought you said ‘Go Sweetie.’” NO! I would not even say that… ever.

Since that moment, whenever my friends, Jenn and Mary, talk about Spilborghs, he apparently must always be referred to as “Sweetie.” It’s no longer Spilly or Spilborghs, but Sweetie. But wait, it gets worse.

Rockies May 2009 052.JPGI was recently at a game with my friend Jenn. We were talking about the fact that in the club house, Todd Helton’s nickname is “Sweet T.” Well, if you say it fast enough, it kind of comes out as “Sweetie” (a little bit of a stretch, but close enough). The conversation shifted from that to what players wives or girlfriends call them. Like if Todd Helton’s wife calls him Sweetie and then in the locker room he gets called something that sounds similar to that. My friend also thought up Todd “The Bod” Helton… Anyway, here we are discussing what a player’s significant other calls them. Well, being the Garrett Atkins fanatic that I am, I thought up the name “Gar-Bear” and then just about threw up. It was the most disgusting name I hadRockies May 2009 089.JPGever thought of. I then made the mistake of telling it to my friend. So now, Garrett Atkins is forever “Gar-Bear.” Does that not make you throw up? Seth Smith? They come up with “Sethipoo” because they have a friend named Seth and that’s apparently what they call him. I really like Seth Smith… I don’t like their friend “Sethipoo”… so now, bad associations there. We used to have the nickname for Matt Holliday, Matt “Everyday’s a holiday with you, Matt Holliday” Holliday. Well, since the trade, my friend Mary decided that she needed to think up a new name that is far too long and ridiculous, so she came up with Brad “You make my heart stop” Hawpe. Yes… these are my friends and yes, it’s okay for you to be embarrassed for me.

Anyway, so should they have been at that game with me, less than 20 feet away from Garrett Atkins, I would’ve been subjected to two people yelling next to me, “GO GAR-BEAR!!!” Yeah… good thing they weren’t. 

So, here are a few pics that I shot while I was there, enjoy:

Rockies May 2009 053.JPG This one’s probably the best because there’s the ball flying toward Atkins and then there’s Brad Hawpe and Ryan Spilborghs sitting in the dugout.

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Rockies May 2009 060.JPG

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Rockies May 2009 069.JPGRockies May 2009 081.JPG
Rockies May 2009 073.JPG
Rockies May 2009 087.JPGThere are more on Facebook… in which my friend commented something like “Gar-Bear is Emily’s Care Bear.” Yeah…

Last thing: look what Sue from Rants, Raves, and Random Thoughts sent me! It’s even got a tattoo… a Rockies tattoo!!!

Photo 12.jpg

1. Photo courtesy: me
2. Photo courtesy: baseball photos
3. Photo courtesy: me
4. Photo courtesy: me

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