Opinion of Kingman's Performance

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Here We Go!

I love this time of year.

Photo by Jon Soo Hoo, Los Angeles Dodgers
Six months of staying up late most nights.
Sleep patterns change.  The poor east coasters adjust their lives in a major way or make an effort to not see the score until the DVR can be played in the morning.  Here on the west coast, my bed time changes from about 10pm each night to around midnight.  The six am alarm clock chime becomes harder and harder to shut off.
The perseverance of grinding through anxious and tense moments.
WIll everything fall in to place.  Can this team of ragtag vets and young kids trudge through 6 months and come out on top?Will Guerra ever pitch a 1-2-3 ninth? Dee Gordon, will he take walks and keep the ball on the ground?   Will Matt Kemp return to his MVP type level?  Will Ethier regain his form? Where is the real Chad Billingsley?  Is this starting staff strong enough?
The heartbreak.  
The lows and the highs of the 162 game marathon.  The frustration and anger after a tough loss and that thought  of “we’ll get ‘em tomorrow” after a tough defeat.  Man, losing streaks are killers.  The beauty of the game is that there is always tomorrow and the knowledge that redemption is just around the corner.

The second-guessing.  
Come on Donnie, pull the double switch. Why not Jansen before Guerra?  How long to we have to endure Uribe hacking away? Marc Ellis in the 2-hole?  Should Gwynn be in as a defensive replacement?    Isn’t it time for Jerry Sands to be called up?  
The Giant loathing.  
The scoreboard watching.  Rooting for that second team - whoever is playing the Giants.  Are you kidding me?  Krukow said what?  How can people stand listening to those two homers in the Gint broadcast booth?  That Coke bottle slide and Giant mitt in left field.  Beat L.A. chants...yawn.

The excitement.
Dee Gordon gets on base in the bottom of the ninth while being down by a run.  It's Maury all over again, "Go, Go" chants return to the ravine.  Mr. Walk Off Andre strides to the plate in extra innings.  Clayton tossing a no-no in the eighth-will he get his first one this year?  Gwynn with a web gem to save the game.  Matt with a late inning bomb to seal the victory.  Kenley throwing heat to retire the side.

Bring back the Kool-a-Koo.  Picante dogs vs. the original Dodger Dog.  Ban the wave.  The dreaded trade deadline combined with the concerns that Ned will trade away the farm for a Octavio Dotel. 

The fanfare and uniqueness of Dodger Stadium.
Dennis Gilbert sitting in the front row and celebrities spotted throughout.  A grilled Dodger dog, peanuts and a coke.  The ushers, the vendors, Roger tossing peanuts, spotting Tommy on the field level hob-nobbing with the fans.  Those dreaded beach balls and paper airplanes.  The pastel seat colors. Five tiers of seats and those awesome shots up to the top of the park from the pitchers mound.  The miriad of colors beyond the pavilion as Sunset silhouettes the backdrop of Dodger Stadium.

The other men in blue.
Oh no! Not Cowboy Joe again.  Can McClelland speed up his calls behind the plate, Geez!  Donnie’s gonna get run if he keeps giving Rapuano lip...Oh, he’s gone!
Cederstrom’s zone is the size of a postage stamp.  
The beauty of the game.
Throwback jersey nights and the history and nostalgia of the grand old game.  Is there a better place to be than in the Left Field Pavilion when Kemp hits a game winning bomb?  The greenest grass in the world and the whitest whites on the home unis.  The poetry and grace of a Dee Gordon defensive gem. Promotional nights, caps, towels, bobbleheads. The soothing organ tones while Honeycutt strolls to the mound to calm a struggling reliever.  The banter amongst fans over roster moves, pending trades and lineup changes.  After game fireworks.  Vin Scully’s tone and poetic prose that flows naturally from his voice night after night.

Photo by Gina Ferrazi, L.A. Times
Man, I love this game.


  1. You mentioned the east coasters. It is definitely different. I do watch a lot of Blue Jay games and acquire a good deal of first hand information on them, my second favorite team.

    With the Dodgers, it is primarily, check it out the next morning. I don't have a DVR, and in any event I simply have never taped anything to play at a later time. So, the advantage is that I go to bed thinking about the game, and in the morning check it out with anticipation every day, for west coast games. Blogs, the Times, box scores tell it all for me. And, no matter the score, it never seems as bad as it might have been in person or on TV. In fact, there is always a positive to be gleaned. It is something like Christmas every morning.

    However, being a Dodger fan on the east coast of Canada is not for the faint of heart. I have managed to stay connected since 1958 simply because of my love for all things Dodgers, including the entire minor league system. I do listen to some Great Lake Loons games on radio. One of the tough parts is not having first hand information and posting on blogs on the west coast. It does put one at a disadvantage and always makes a post a risk.

    Having said that, blogs and forums have allowed me to connect with other Dodger fanatics. I am essentially a Dodger hermit where I live. The most I ever get is, "How are the Dodgers doing?" or, "I hear the Dodgers are bankrupt." This is Yankee, Red Sox, Blue Jay country. The Yankees and Red Sox, still from the good old days, and the Blue Jays as the new kids on the block since 1977, and before them the Expos. Folks here haven't followed the Expos to Washington.

    Today's opener, 4:05 pm, on the west coast, I can follow, which is nice. Here's looking forward to another season of Dodger baseball. Got a feeling it might just surprise us.

  2. Harold, I was thinking of you when those East Coast followers comments were made. Even here in the Pacific Time Zone, there are times when work consumes my activity and I'll be forced to work during game time. I have found with the DVR, I can scan through a game in about a half hour to forty-five minutes. I love my DVR. It has saved me so much time. Well worth the investment for me.