Friday was our first of three Cards games. We walked a few blocks to the Powell Street station to take the BART (Bay Area Rapid Transit) to The Coliseum. It was an easy trip, about 20-25 minutes. Oakland really isn’t much to write home about, and neither is their ballpark. It is old, not all that attractive, has narrow concourses, generic scoreboards, and what appears to be dugouts that you would have difficulty seeing the batter from. That being said there is plenty we did enjoy. The Asian usher lady that handed out to us (and apparently all Cards fans) a little fabric fortune cookie made from baseball fabric that had the Cards logo and the A’s logo on the “fortune”. Also a random A’s fan was “Hey, Cards fans, welcome to Oakland!”
Before the game we were taking in BP and David Eckstein came over to sign autographs for what seemed like an eternity. He was mobbed at first so I didn’t go over there, but then the crowd thinned out so I went over and he signed my ticket. I had been trying to get his autograph forever, and kept getting denied. Finally! He really is a super nice guy. He didn’t play (guessing some sort of oblique/back issue… as he was pointing to that general area when he was talking to Pete P. one of the trainers or the “D.S. Designated Stretcher” as we like to call him.
If you saw the scoreboard (Cards lost 14 to 3) you know we didn’t have much to cheer about during the game. The 3rd and 7th innings when we gave of 6 runs each were particularly difficult to watch. However, the bottom of the 8th was HISTORIC!!! We were out of the game, our pen had been used up in Thursday’s blowout at KC, so Scott Spiezio (utility infielder/outfielder) was brought in to pitch. Please see my “Game Highlights” post from about a week ago for more details on my love of Scott Spiezio. Spiez was great! He pitched a scoreless inning (more than some of our actual pitchers can say) and nearly had a strike out. The Cards fans at the game (and there were a good number, considering the distance) went nuts when he got that third out. They were yelling and screaming, and completely oblivious to the fact that we has just gotten our butts kicked. Spiez was a riot to watch. He was out there just having a blast, grinning from ear to ear. We watched him warm-up in the pen and were like “What the …” We thought maybe he was just tossing to warm up to get ready to come in an play defense. When he came into pitch and was tossing a last few warm up pitches, it appeared that Rolen was watching him intently and possibly giving him some tips. Anyway, it was great to see, and if you are going to get your butt kicked, at least give the fans a treat and have your utility man pitch.
The BART ride home was definitely one to remember. It is too difficult to describe in words but basically our train was filled with a variety of drunk Cards fans that were just very chatty and crazy. The poor people of Oakland, especially those that had not been at the game, couldn’t get off the train soon enough. It was very entertaining. Hopefully we can get a win tonight (Saturday).