7/25/06 at Shea Stadium

Better.

I got my corner spot in the right field Loge, and good things happened…

For the first two minutes of batting practice, I had the entire section to myself, and I asked Mike Pelfrey several times for a ball. Then some kid showed up and decided to stand right next to me. (Smart.) He shouted at Pelfrey. Pelfrey threw the next ball our way. I reached out and caught it.

Several minutes later, a ball trickled onto the warning track down below. Billy Wagner walked over, and I asked him for it. He looked up and tossed it to me. Easy. (The other kid ended up getting two balls, including one with my help, so don’t feel bad.)

The Loge was already filling up, and some guys in the next section started yelling for a ball. I kept paying attention to the batter so I didn’t notice that someone threw a ball to them until it sailed over their heads and whacked a seat. The ball ricocheted into my section. Everyone raced for it. I won.

practiceballs2.jpg

Both the Wagner ball and random ball had “PRACTICE” stamped lightly on the sweet spot. Nothing extraordinary, but still noteworthy. (As you can see, I marked the balls with numbers so I’ll always remember how I got them.)

Five minutes later, Orlando Hernandez finished playing catch and tossed the ball to some fans in the Mezzanine level, 20 feet above me. The ball fell short and bounced off the concrete facade. A few fans in my section scrambled toward the spot where the ball was about to land, but just before they got there, I lunged over two rows of seats and caught it six inches off the ground. It was 4:58pm. I’d been inside Shea Stadium for 18 minutes, and I had four balls. At that pace, I would’ve had 23 by the end of batting practice–but it wasn’t meant to be.

I managed to get just one more ball in the final hour and 20 minutes of BP, but it was a fun one because I got to use the glove trick. The ball landed on that sloped grassy area in the right field corner.

ball2866grassyarea.jpg

I figured the ball was too far up for security to steal it and too far down for any of the nearby fans to have a chance, so I gave up my corner spot and ran downstairs. For the first time ever, no one was guarding the entrance to the precious Dream Seats. (Those are the new fancy seats on that intrusive platform.) I waltzed out onto the platform and peered over the edge, prompting an usher to hurry over and warn me not to go down there.

“I don’t need to,” I said as I started setting up my glove.

Thankfully, the usher didn’t recognize me, so he let me do my thing and skeptically cheered me on.

2005allstarball.jpg

The ball was a bit too far out for me to simply lower the glove over it, so I gently swung the glove out and knocked the ball closer…and then it was showtime. The glove went over the ball. The ball (yet another one from the 2005 All-Star Game) went in the glove. Everyone in the section applauded. The usher shook my hand.

I ran all over the place for the rest of BP, but like I said: NOTHING. But you know what? I don’t even care because I got four great autographs right before the game.

The previous day, I’d brought several ticket stubs from Jose Reyes’ cycle. As I expected, he signed some autographs along the first base line after his pregame running, but it was such a mob scene that I couldn’t get near him despite being just one staircase to the left.

davidwright.jpgreyes&wrightautographs.jpg

Last night, however, I happened to pick the right spot, and I got him. And since the people behind me were literally mashing me against the front row, I couldn’t get out of the way to let them in, so I just stayed there and got Reyes two more times. It was beautiful. He didn’t even look up. He just kept signing everything that people stuck in his face. Sadly, though, my Sharpie got a bit dry, so the third autograph looks like crap. Moments later, David Wright came over, and I got him to sign an even older ticket (with someone else’s black Sharpie). Hot diggity.

I went back up to the Loge for the start of the game. Carlos Zambrano was pitching for the Cubs, so I knew there’d be more foul balls than usual…and there were…but just not to me. For the first three innings, I stood in the runway between sections 4 and 6 for every left-handed batter. Then, at the start of the fourth, I grabbed an empty seat 15 feet away. Two batters later, Juan Pierre hit a foul ball **RIGHT** to the spot where I’d been standing. Dear God, just because Zambrano points toward the sky after every inning doesn’t mean that he should get all the love.

Zambrano worked seven so-so innings for his 11th win, and he HIT his fourth home run of the season–to the opposite field! The ball is juiced. I’m telling you. If you don’t believe me, all I can say is that Endy Chavez connected for a three-run shot that was estimated at 415 feet.

After the game, I got my sixth and final ball from home plate umpire Kerwin Danley as he left the field.

haroldbaines.jpg

STATS:

• 47,686 fans in attendance

Competition Factor = 286,116.

• 115 balls in 15 games this season = 7.7 balls per game.

• 28 autographs on 22 ticket stubs this year

• 949 lifetime autographs on 792 ticket stubs

• 442 consecutive games with at least one ball

• 68 consecutive games with at least two balls

• 2,867 total balls…moves me ahead of Harold Baines (2,866) and into 39th place on the all-time hits list. Next up is Babe Ruth (2,873).

151 comments

  1. ramones18@cox.net

    well six is better than two, and you showed how you can recover from a bad performance, zack. Peace

  2. Zack

    Six is still below average, but I’ll take it. Shea keeps getting tougher…47,000 fans on a Tuesday night?! Anyway, thanks for reading.

  3. logangaudet_10@hotmail.com

    6 balls makes you feel like it was worth going to the game now I bet.Good game you got to see the Mets lose :D

  4. ramones18@cox.net

    47000!!! omg! what happened to the good old days when you could go to a mets game with 20000 fans??

  5. Zoe

    Oh, when Glavine gave up a home run to the pitcher, I held my head in my hands and sobbed inside. Glad you had some fun, though. Those ninth innings where we *almost* come from behind are getting harder and harder to watch!

    http://www.pickmeup.mlblogs.com/

  6. Zack

    LOGAN-
    I’m glad I went. I won’t be back at Shea for two weeks, so I have a better memory of the place to last me. Today’s game was a 12:10pm start…so no.

    RAMONES-

    I’m afraid those days are gone.

    ZOE-

    Were you there? I was thinking of dropping by your seats, but I didn’t want to lose MY seat.

    NICK-

    In 1993, there was a stretch when I went to 12 games in 11 days.

  7. jimmyjoejoejrchabadu@hotmail.com

    Wow I thought I was the only one with those practice stamps on balls. Who threw you that ball and from what team. My ball that says practice came from Jim Thome and my friend also got a ball from Contreas that had the practice stamp on it.

  8. gregorybarasch@yahoo.com

    I’ve been wondering about those balls with a “PRACTICE” stamp. I’ve caught a few of them, and I have no idea what to think. At first I thought it was some kind of way for the team to keep track of them, but since it seems like the players are more inclined to throw these balls into the stands, I’ve started to embrace them. (Wow, that came out corny!)

    By the way Zack (or anybody else), you can call me Greg.

  9. thechuckster8@aol.com

    2 day totals-
    Zack-8 balls, Scott Eyre Autograph, 3 Jose Reyes Autographs, David Wright Autograph

    Charlie-8 balls, Scott Eyre Autograph, 4 Jose Reyes Autographs, David Wright Autograph, Shawn Marshall Autograph, Dusty Baker Autograph 2 Billy Wagner Autographs

    Who came out better?

  10. Zack

    JIMMY-
    Those were my 2nd and 3rd balls of the day: Billy Wagner/unknown.

    GREG-

    I think those balls are just crappier…like, lower quality balls, but I’m not sure.

    CHUCKSTER-

    Lifetime totals…?

  11. jimmyjoejoejrchabadu@hotmail.com

    I think your right about low quality balls being the ones with practice on them cause my practice stamped ball seems really warped like it was left out in the rain or something, it has some water marks on it and its kinda bumpy, but I still like it.

  12. thechuckster8@aol.com

    You have 10 years on me, and got to snag when nobody went to baseball games.

  13. Zack

    JIMMY-
    I doubt the balls were stamped AFTER they’d been sitting out in the rain.

    CHUCKSTER-

    If only I had a clue in 1992…I’d have 5,000 balls by now.

  14. logangaudet_10@hotmail.com

    Don’t those 2006 all-star balls look cool? I wouldn’t mind getting one or the “golden balls” either from the home run derby they both look really cool.
    -Logan

  15. dannyzhang312@hotmail.com

    Hey Zack,

    I’m going to a game on September 5th, Jays vs. Indians in Toronto. Any ideas as to who’s generous on those teams? I bought seats out in right field, because I know Hafner hits alot of homers that way. Anyway, sounded like a fun day at Shea yesterday!

  16. Zoe

    I was there! I soothed my pain with a carvel ice cream cone–the kind the vendors sell in the stands, with the chocolate coating. mmmm.

    Working on cropping my awesome batting practice pics for an album.

    Go you with your autographs!

    I wanted one sooo bad but got nada.

    http://www.pickmeup.mlblogs.com/

  17. gregorybarasch@yahoo.com

    Zach, your explanation about the practice balls would make sense, but I don’t see much of a difference in the balls. I’m sure it’s something like what you said though.

    Logan, where did you get a 2006 All-Star ball? I didn’t know those were circulating in batting practice. I’d love to see what that looks like.

  18. trueplaya_202@hotmail.com

    danny- If your ogign to the Rogers Centre you wont get to see jays BP or their infield. The gates only open in time to see the beggining ofo the visitors BP in your case cleveland. The pitchers will more then likeley start tossing down the right field line. Unfortunately for you the gates will open only an hour and a half before the game and they kick you out 45 minutes befor the game to go to your seats.

    I dont know any good people for the indians but for my jays…

    good

    scott downs (signs tons of autos)

    pete walker on DL so liekly wont be there

    BJ Ryan- often signs auto after hes throwing

    Ted Lilly- has thrown a ball or 2 after doign a bullpen session

    Ty Taubenheim- if back with the team by then he signs autos

    thats all i knwo as i rarely see the jays BP

  19. trueplaya_202@hotmail.com

    Oh yeah and Zack 6 is prety good and o man those all star balls are nice. I saw a kid with one when the Mets camem to Toronto

  20. logangaudet_10@hotmail.com

    No No I don’t got any Greg I was just saying how nice they looked. Sorry for the confusion.

  21. gregorybarasch@yahoo.com

    Oh, okay, sorry. Wow, the Golden Ball is really nice. I want wanna those. Too bad they would never use those for BP.

  22. logangaudet_10@hotmail.com

    Ya I know hopefully just some how I manage to go on vacation with my parents or with my dad on buisness to pitsburgh and happen to leave with a baseball from the home run derby or a game ball =).

  23. andy5353@aol.com

    Hey ZAck-nice entry.Jimmy-Jays
    send AJ Burnett to the hill tonight hope they can pull off another victory.Hope my red sox win they are playing now!GO RED SOX!GO JAYS!

    -kaylee

  24. logangaudet_10@hotmail.com

    kaylee… Whos the sox playing now? With Burnett on the mound… I feel the Blue Jays got a good chance to win… He’s a good young pitcher.

  25. andy5353@aol.com

    Logan:They are Playing OAkland right now.I hope you are right about the jays!
    -kaylee

  26. logangaudet_10@hotmail.com

    Zack I got a question about your book. How many pages does it have and does it even sell anymore?

  27. andy5353@aol.com

    UGH!!These Red sox are getting shut out in the 5th they need to score!They used all their offense last night.scoring 13 runs!
    -kaylee

  28. logangaudet_10@hotmail.com

    Ya I would say. The Mets won 1-0 =( attendance was 40,300 on an afternoon! what the heck. Good thing Zack didn’t go to the game :P I’m sure he would of gotten a few for sure. As for the Red Sox whoa game isn’t going the best for them =p. Let’s hope Big Papi will get a HR for the Sox sake. Ah, Cora just pop flied for out number 1 =p.

  29. jimmyjoejoejrchabadu@hotmail.com

    As the season nears to its end its more probable the Jays will make the playoffs just 2.5 games back of the wild card and 5.5 out of the AL East with AJ on the mound tonight against rusty old Moyer, its a guaranteed win. Anyway can’t wait for some Jays- Red Soxs games to come around so we can get more ground on them.

  30. jimmyjoejoejrchabadu@hotmail.com

    Just watch once we get Lugo we’re not gonna stop winning.

    Wouldn’t everyone just love it if the Yankees Red Sox and White Sox don’t make the playoffs. I sure would don’t get me wrong they somewhat deserve to make the playoffs but it would be a better world if they didn’t.

  31. logangaudet_10@hotmail.com

    Nah they have been to dominant in the last 10 years. Let the Blue Jays or the Tigers have a chance for a change.

  32. andy5353@aol.com

    Jimmy:IAM WATCHING…I just dont want the red sox to lose the division cuz the jays may take the wild card from us!
    by the way 5-0 OAkland over the red sox in the 7th!

    -kaylee

  33. andy5353@aol.com

    RED LOSe!JIMMY I AM SURE IS HAPPY ABOUT THIS!JAYS GAIN A GAME ON THEM!AJ CAN DO IT!
    -kaylee

  34. gregorybarasch@yahoo.com

    You know who I would love to see make the AL Playoffs this year? The Blue Jays, Tigers, Twins, and Rangers. Wouldn’t that be more fun than the Yankees, Red Sox, White Sox,
    and Angels again?

    Actually, I mostly want this because the Mets will probably represent the NL in the World Series and it would be much more fun to see a young team like the Tigers or Blue Jays (or even the Twins with Liriano and Santana) play them than some stuffy old team like the Yankees. Stupid Yankees.

  35. logangaudet_10@hotmail.com

    Kaylee are you a fan of the Red Sox or the Blue Jays haha you seem to not be to protective over your favorite team =p. (I’m not saying you don’t like them by the way)

  36. andy5353@aol.com

    I like them Both!I actually would not mind seeing the jays in the playoffs instead of the red sox!
    -kaylee

  37. logangaudet_10@hotmail.com

    Man fans like that are odd. Haha ya i just called you odd. I loved the Blue Jays since I was 4 (that was in 1996). I love them still.

  38. gregorybarasch@yahoo.com

    Don’t get me wrong, Kaylee. I’m sure the Red Sox will make the playoffs. I couldn’t imagine a way the Red Sox could be snubbed. I was just saying that it might be kind of fun to see some younger teams make the playoffs instead of the teams that are always there?

    But of coure I root for the Red Sox simply because I hate the Yankees.

  39. kandiman20@yahoo.com

    Hey, Zack – it’s autograph Evan – I decided to go to the game today after all. Whom did I see walking around the outside of the park this morning you ask? David Cone – unreal – no one recognized him. He signed for me and a few others. What a great guy, too!

    I can’t believe that you got Reyes to sign so many times for you…I still have yet to obtain his signature for my collection.

    I hope you don’t mind, but I attached this link to one of my blog entries on myspace.

    Again, great job with the glove trick yesterday. The reactions of some of the people around you were priceless…don’t worry – I get those same looks when a town car pulls into the lot and a 27 year old man chases after it.

    Evan

  40. gregorybarasch@yahoo.com

    Evan, the reason David Cone was at the ballpark is because he spent an inning in the SNY booth with Gary Cohen and Keith Hernandez. I assume that wasn’t the only reason he was there, but that’s the best I can do.

  41. kandiman20@yahoo.com

    One more thing, Zack – what was that link you were telling me about – the guy from the Twins – thanks!

    Evan

  42. thechuckster8@aol.com

    Just a question for the kandiman. Where you the guy with the messanger bag outside of Shea yesterday?

  43. mlb@santantonio.net

    Zack,

    I am a long time lurker and fan who was given your book many years ago while in high school by my now wife. Tonight I had a night like no other at the park.

    I live in DC so I attended the Giants @ National’s game. I got there for gates open as usual and right off caught a BP line drive. I usually keep all I catch and average about 3 BP per game. My rules are caught balls only, no tossed. So tonight I caught a ball right off, but decided to give it to a little girl standing to the left of me for some reason. I don’t know why, just did. Well, Karma.

    2nd inning rolls around and Barry Bonds walks to the plate. He got to a 3-2 count and fouled the next ball off, deep to left seats territory, WHERE I WAS SITTING. I had nobody to the left of my in the row, so I start to drift a little towards the isle. I put my right arm back to feel for other people while watching the ball. Last season I got jacked in the back of the head in a similar situation and lost the ball. I realized tonight nobody was near me, not within arms reach. It was all mine, I had judged it perfectly, reached up, one handed, perfect pocket of the glove. I got a big round of applause and even a comment from the announcer on the game (says my friends watching). What a night, and the Nats come from behind to win it in the 9th!

    Alex

  44. thenetsguy@gmail.com

    Wow could have been one of my worst games of my life way to freakin hot so anyway I commented yesterday about how to get down well any way last minute my dads client couldnt go to a game so We got the tickets lower level like sec 227 not bad prepaid parking diamond club the whole thing well any way I get to the park 10:50 one look and I see no BP way to hot I dont blame them but ya so I go up to your spot and looked for you right field line loge couldnt find you and no players paid us any attenetion I went back down to the right field line where the pitchers were starting to come out to warm up and I was told that I missed alduque signing. and no one else esigned. so we waited finaly I got a pelfry autograph (the only guy the whole day signed autos Besides alduque) there was only about two balls tossed to the stands there next I went over between right field and first base for postion playters warming up none but no one through any balls or signed but I then I headed to the dugout huing out there till the satrt of the game top of the first at the end of the innning carlos through me the final out ball and then some kid next to me put his feet on the dugout down came the usher and checked evry1s ticket and I had to leave the section 10 minutes later I was to sections over on top of the dugoust second row anyway. I then screamed to no avail at the end of every inning for till the buttom of the eighth when I saw a bunch of people from the blue seats luxuroy tix behind the plate leave and I got there ticket stubs and sat in there for the rest of the game those cuishoned seats are realy conftorable and at thte end of te game the batboys tossed out like 12 balls and I got one not such a Bad day in the end cause the pelfry auto and tow balls Thats 5 balls in my collection and my second game ever catching balls at ps do they count when tossed from the batboy or after the game Later my man watch out zack im only 2862 balls behind you later
    – Metsguy

  45. thenetsguy@gmail.com

    PS: Im a big fan of yours have you ever caught any playoff balls also
    2 if you ever need accesss to the MLB media webstite or the MLB.tv let me know, Idk if you like other sports but I have passes to the nba, nfl and nhl media websites alson in adition to the jets media website. later

    – Metsguy

  46. bergin42@msn.com

    wow…chucksters getting pretty confident and he sounds like hes smartin off to you zack..hey zack me and a friend of mine are in the process of getting a sports radio show in wisconsin and when we are through everything and have the show running.do you think you could maybe do an interview sometime? and also danny…the indians players who sign are c.c. Sabathia(one of the nicest in the league), bob wickman, aaron boone, jeremy guthrie..

  47. nelsonvarona@msn.com

    Zack finally got to see you in action!!! Great job!!! I was the guy with the Leones jersey who said wassup to you. As I was saying wassup to you a lady wanted to buy the ball that Henry Blanco tossed my way because the jersey I was wearing was from his winter ball team in his home in Caracas, Venezuela. After that I did not want to disturb you since you was in in the zone. Take care Z.

  48. sheffro1@hotmail.com

    Just a question:

    How does 2,861 balls move you ahead of Baines, who has 2,866? I was told there would be no math….

  49. Zack

    LOGAN-
    The Derby balls are very cool. I hope I can get one someday. My book is 140 pages. Unfortunately, it went out of print a few years ago, but there are still some copies floating around online. Try amazon.com or abebooks.com and just do a search for my name and/or the title.

    DANNY-

    Looks like you got your answer(s) from True Playa and Bergin.

    ZOE-

    I wanted ice cream sooooo bad, but I’ve decided that from now on, I only get to have it after I snag a foul ball during the game.

    GREGORY-

    If a certain batch of balls doesn’t meet the standards at the Rawlings factory, I think those are the ones that might end up getting designated for practice and sold to the teams at a discount.

    TRUE PLAYA-

    Thanks for the list of Jays.

    KAYLEE-

    Thanks!

    JIMMY-

    I agree that it would be much better for baseball to have all new teams in the playoffs. Plus, after Ozzie Guillen’s homophobic slur, I will never root for the White Sox as long as he’s connected to the team…and that pretty much means they’re screwed because the Hample Jinx rarely fails.

    JONELI-

    You’re probably right. I’m psyched to have gotten Reyes on the cycle stubs. Now I just need to get Randy Winn on HIS cycle stubs, and I’ll have a chance in a few weeks when I see the Giants at Petco. Winn doesn’t strike me as a particularly friendly guy, though.

    EVAN-

    That’s awesome. Had you ever gotten Cone before? I got him way back in the day at Yankee Stadium, like in 1992, and then I got him a few years ago when he tried to make that brief comeback with the Mets. (Remember that game when he struck out 19 guys at the Vet? I was there, baby!) He’s always been a SuperNice guy. No Reyes autos for you? How is that possible? He always goes to the same spot right before the game. You just have to get there early and wait…but hold on, why am *I* giving *you* autograph advice. That’s just wrong. I don’t mind that you attached a link to this entry. In fact, that’s cool. Thanks. One of the most fun things about using the glove trick is seeing everyone’s reaction…it’s almost like I’m putting on a show…but of course getting the baseball is my priority. Are you in that pic of the grassy area? Finally, here’s the link to Twins pitcher Pat Neshek’s blog:

    http://eteamz.active.com/patneshek/index.cfm?

    ALEX-

    Lurking is certainly allowed, but it’s always more fun when people make their presence known. So…hello! Great story about Bonds. Congrats. I wonder if MLB is still marking balls with DNA (or whatever) for Barry’s at-bats. I know it’s not a home run, but still, you might have one of the secret/special balls.

    METS GUY-

    Thanks for the update. Sounds like a seriously tough day, and yet you still managed to get a few balls and a great autograph. Not bad. I don’t think it’s the heat that caused the teams to skip BP; I think it was the earliness…and that’s why I no longer attend day games. I’ve only been to a few playoff games, and yes, I did once catch a game ball at one of them. Remember the famous grand-slam single by Robin Ventura in Game 5 of the 1999 NLCS? Well, I caught a foul ball in the top of the 13th inning that was hit by Braves catcher Jorge Fabregas. That was one of my best moments as a baseball collector. I got a bunch of balls during BP at those NLCS games, too. Thanks for the offer to hook me up with access to all those sites. I already have MLB.tv, and I’m really not too interested in the other sports, so for right now, I don’t need to take you up on it. But I really appreciate it.

    BERGIN-

    Chuckster is more than welcome to do some trash-talking. I have no problem with that. I’d love to be on your radio show, so just let me know when you guys are ready. Thanks for the offer. And thanks for the list of Indians.

    NELSON-

    At the expense of sounding like a ****, I have to ask you to refresh my memory about when and where exactly we ran into each other. Was it during BP? What section? I don’t remember seeing Henry Blanco either day. Was it behind the Cubs’ dugout? (My mind is going…)

    SHEFFRO-

    Good catch with the 2861. Duh. You’re right. I simply forgot to add the six I’d just come home with. But it’s fixed now. Meanwhile, that video is TOO funny!!! (Chuckster, it sounds an awful lot like you.)

  50. kandiman20@yahoo.com

    I actually did meet David Cone once before – in September of 1987! He was doing a signing at a baseball card shop in my hometown. I had no idea who he was at the time, but I still wanted an autograph from a big league ball player. He was actually my very first autograph which I still have to this very day. It was definitely time for another!

    Actually, I am in that picture of the grassy area. You can see me in the corner against the railing in my black Wagner jersey.

    Thanks again for the link. Looks like I have something to read later! Btw…I’m planning a trip to RFK and Philly when the Mets travel in a few weeks. If you or anyone reading this knows of the best place to get autos from the Mets during away games at these 2 stadiums, I’d would appreciate any tips. I know the dugouts are always good spots inside, but does anyone know about outside? Of course, I’ll be looking to snag a few balls as well. Thanks again!

    -Evan

  51. Zack

    Wow…so Mister Cone is to blame for your obsession.

    :-)

    In that pic of the grassy area, are you in THE corner spot, all the way down at the bottom? Section 179 Row A?

    I don’t know anything about the autograph scene at RFK or Citizens Bank Park. Sorry.

  52. gregorybarasch@yahoo.com

    Hey, kandiman. I’m also planning a trip to Philly and D.C. for the Mets road trip in a couple weeks. I think I’ll probably go to four of the six games. As far as snagging balls in Philly, the left field bleacher gates open first, I think at 4:30 or 5:00 for a 7:00 game. The players thrown plenty of balls and since the left field fence is so close to home plate, all kinds of home run balls land there in BP.

    At RFK, there are no good seats for catching hit BP balls, but along the left field and right field lines, players threw a lot of balls into the stands. It’s very much like Shea in that aspect.

    Those are the only things I can really tell you about those parks. I’m sure Zack could chime in with some more helpful tips.

  53. mlb@santantonio.net

    Best place at RFK for away autographs is just to the home plate side of the dugout during BP, and along the right field line during warmups.

    Zack, No DNA markings that I can see. I ran it under a blacklight too, nothing glowing. The markings for #715 looks like a simple stamp. Check out the ebay auction for the Bonds #715 ball. Up to $130,000 right now.

    I do think the RFK left field lines provides an advantage for BP balls. Right on the corner. You can either rush up the aisle behind you to snag balls in the seats, or bend overl the railing, as far as you possibly can, and you can reach the track dirt. RFK has huge foul territory where other parks are much better (like Philly, again the left field line is good), but RFK has one thing other parks dont seem to anymore. Curved seating bowl. If a ball is hit towards the wall in another park, it hits the wall and bounces off the flat surface back into the field. At RFK, if a ball is hit against teh wall, it will hit the wall and then bounce down the wall. If you get the lean right, you can get the ball every time. But you do sort of lean over on your balls, and a baseball isn’t usually worth giving up your balls, so be careful out there.

    Other than that, go up in the left field loge area. You are above the visitors bullpen and usually get 3-10 HR balls up there during BP. And if you can use the glove trick you can get one from the bullpen, but that is a good 30 foot drop, so it would be like getting one off the second deck at Old Tiger Stadium in the outfield, and that is just ridiculous.

  54. Zack

    I can’t add anything extra about ball-snagging at either of those parks. RFK is difficult. That’s about all I know. I’ve only been there once, and BP was rained out. Good point about the bowl shape of the stadium. Funny point about leaning on your balls. I didn’t know there was a middle deck at RFK. I just thought it was upper and lower (other than that really thin row of seats right below the upper deck, which I always assumed were private suites).

  55. jimmyjoejoejrchabadu@hotmail.com

    Hey Zack

    Going to the August 6th and 7th Jays games. 1st one is against the Chi Sox and I’m pretty sure I’ll get a ball from the bullpen catcher Man Soo Lee cause I talked to him for a long time last time the Chi Sox came to town, also hoping for Jim Thome to sign a ball he tossed to me last time. The next game is on a holiday monday agains the Orioles. Its gonna be the 1st time I see the O’s so if anyone knows any good signers ball throws it would be appriciated, (I know Zack theres no laziness in ball snagging, but I’m lazy) hopefull my streak will rise to 8 straight games and 3 straight games with at least 3 balls in a hard to snag stadium like the Rogers Centre.

    Anyway Go Jays Go! and keep on snagging.

  56. Zack

    Well…

    The generous ball-givers on the Orioles (based on the few times that I’ve seen ’em this year) are: Kurt Birkins, Bruce Chen, Rodrigo Lopez, Russ Ortiz, Jeff Conine, Melvin Mora, Kevin Millar, and coach Tom Trebelhorn.

    Good luck with your streak.

  57. yanksfan61293@aol.com

    VIDEO GAME UPDATE:

    I am probably about 2/3 of the way done. Levels 1-4 are complete, and I began level 10 because it’s fun to work on the last level. The last level is at Yankee Stadium. You need to snag 10 balls and obtain 5 autographs. I am gonna also add fans in the Yankee stadium level that can take the balls from you if you don’t catch them, so you have to be quick.

    Cheers,

    Scott

  58. logangaudet_10@hotmail.com

    Yanksfan, I havn’t read enough about your game your making and i have a few questions…What is it called?…Is it for PC only?…where do you get it?…When is it comming out?. Thats all i got to ask about it but it sounds AMAZINGLY wicked HAHA =).

  59. logangaudet_10@hotmail.com

    Zack, I’ve been wondering ever since I started reading your blogs, have you ever caught a home run ball? From what I have read it doesn’t look like you even sit in home run territory. So i was only wondering if you have caught one.

  60. yanksfan61293@aol.com

    Logangaudet-

    The game is simply called “Snagging Baseballs.” It is not for sale, and the only people who will get it are Zack and I. (Turns out, I probably can make 1 copy for you Zack). It is for the PC. If it is possible to make more copies…Zack and I will make up some kind of contract to sell it because I use him in the game, which he did give me permission to do, and if I were to sell it, he would have to get some cash, too.

    Sorry Logan…the chance I can get you a copy is SLIM!

  61. yanksfan61293@aol.com

    continued Scott…

    If you are wondering what program I am using to make this game, it is called Multimedia Fusion Developer 2.0.

  62. logangaudet_10@hotmail.com

    Ahh the game sounds SOOO interesting =p but it’s no big deal that’s all I needed to know =p sounds like an amazing game though.

  63. Zack

    SCOTT-
    Thanks for the continued updates. The game sounds great…I just wish it were compatible with my Mac, but I’ll find a way to play it. You should add some fans at Yankee Stadium that’ll kick your *** if you look at them funny. Very nice of you to let me in on the profits, if the game gets that far…

    LOGAN-

    Good question about PCs. I forgot to ask it myself. You’d pay “anything” for the game? Hmm…

    As for home run balls, I’ve gotten three during games, all at Yankee Stadium:

    1) Hit by Mike Stanley in 1992…landed in a section of empty seats (back when there WERE empty seats).

    2) Hit by Mel Hall in 1992, bounced back onto the field, tossed back into the seats by right fielder Von Hayes (so I don’t actually count it as one of my 93 game balls).

    3) Hit by Mike Bordick in 2001. I caught it on a fly. Yay. And when I refused to throw it back, I was booed/heckled/cursed at by the entire stadium.

  64. logangaudet_10@hotmail.com

    HAHA it’s funny when they do that, but if one of those people booing you if they were in your shoes then they wouldn’t throw it back.

  65. yanksfan61293@aol.com

    yeah…

    when I say “PC” I mean it’s a CD-Rom, which means if you have a CD Rom Player in your Mac, it should work.

    Not that I know.

    Also, the game can’t cost more than $3 anyway because it’s not like I’m making this game with the “industry standard” or anything, I mean, anyone can buy this program that I am using to make this game if you wanna spen $400. The game is BY FAR more detailed than the original I made at home, but it’s not exactly the most detailed game you’ll ever see. I’d say the part that really makes the game “detailed” is that I added the concourse and the concession stands in practice mode.

  66. logangaudet_10@hotmail.com

    $3 Bucks thats sick lol i’d pay that Canadian make youself a little profit ;). HAHA

  67. Zack

    LOGAN-
    After I caught the shot by Bordick, there was one guy who got right up in my face, and I was like, “YOU catch a home run, and YOU throw it back.” He had no response.

    SCOTT-

    CD-Rom, huh? Let me ask my computer friends…

  68. logangaudet_10@hotmail.com

    Ahh I love it when people don’t realize what it would be like just to catch a home run ball till they get one. (I didn’t ever get one and i think of the feeling and I’m sure it’s nothing like it would actually be it you got it) I’d get the same adrenaline rush you get from catching that ball as i would get when I would walk into an MLB stadium HAHA.

  69. yanksfan61293@aol.com

    once again, coninued scott…

    actually, I GUESS I can put in home runs that can be caught…

  70. logangaudet_10@hotmail.com

    Yanksfan, we were’t talking about home runs in the game if you were wondering.

  71. logangaudet_10@hotmail.com

    Has there been any good plays in baseball lately i havn’t really been into the telivision cause i have been busy and wanted to know if I should watch some?!?!

  72. jimmyjoejoejrchabadu@hotmail.com

    Watch the Jays game tonight and you will be thankful you did because the Jays are always pulling Homour Roll material, whether its Hinskie or Johnson diving in the outfield or Wells if he’s not DHing, trust me watch tonights late game and watch the highlight reels light up with our gold glovers.

  73. logangaudet_10@hotmail.com

    Ahh man I’d say i remember the night wells and Hinske had the back to back dives in right and center oh man that was unreal. My fists were pumping I thought it was amazing.

  74. jimmyjoejoejrchabadu@hotmail.com

    I love Hinskie now, at the start of the year all I thought of him was being a fat tub of lard sitting on the bench but he’s proved me wrong and I live Hinskie now, so glad Sheas gone so Eric has more time to DH. Anways the Jays will be unstopabble when Rios is back later and same with Chacin.

    To me the Jays smell like a victory. Also I’m trying to update my blog regularary – (can’t spell) http://bluejaysandmore.blogspot.com/

  75. logangaudet_10@hotmail.com

    Remember the first year he was drafted and I remember watching sportcenter and seeing him jack one out and I was like I love this guy. I was only young then like 10 or younger can’t remember haha.

  76. logangaudet_10@hotmail.com

    Or the first year when he played for them and he was third-base no clue how long I just rememeber him being a good third-baseman.

  77. andy5353@aol.com

    Cmon i am watching this jays game give me a victory please!ted lily and the jays(jimmy wants it too huh?
    -kaylee

  78. yanksfan61293@aol.com

    no! The only team I root for is the Yankees, I don’t root for the A’s if they are playing the RedSox, or any other team (that was just an example)…

  79. jimmyjoejoejrchabadu@hotmail.com

    I was just looking at old MLB drafts and I can’t believe Pujols was selected in the 13th round of the 1999 draft. Wow were the Cards lucky, just think what this guy is doing now. That brings me to this note, who do you guys think was the biggest sleeper in MLB drafts. I still think its Pujols or maybe Piazza.

  80. andy5353@aol.com

    Jimmy-I was not being crazy when I said I WANT THE JAYS IN THE PLAYOFFS MORE THAN THe RED SOX—-the red sox have been there many times-jays need a taste of the playoffs again
    -kaylee

  81. logangaudet_10@hotmail.com

    I missed the Jays game, it didn’t start until 11:05 PM for me so I was asleep by the top of the third =p. Who cares they lost anyways?

  82. logangaudet_10@hotmail.com

    Zack, how old is you glove. You got duct tape around the pocket of it HAHA I love that haha. Does it even have padding in it? HAHA

  83. andy5353@aol.com

    I leave tomorrow for fenway.I am scared though as i have never Been on a plane because i am afraid of heights and planes.But it will be worth it i guess!
    -kaylee

  84. yanksfan61293@aol.com

    Kaylee-you have nothing to worry about with flying on the plane…I’ve flown a plane before, which I guess means you “choose your own fate” Eerily, even though I’ve flown airplanes, I am still nervous of flying when each time I go on an airplane, and honestly, flying isn’t something I greatly enjoy. You don’t have to look out the window though, so you don’t have to see how high you are…and if you are flying in a commercial plane, I could tell you how high you will be, but I don’t want to scare you. From Arizona to Boston, should be a 5, maybe 6 hours on the plane, so if you don’t like dirty (or public in general) rest rooms, go before you get on the airplane.

    By the way Zack, I can get you a copy of the game!

  85. gregorybarasch@yahoo.com

    The Carlos Lee trade quite a blockbuster deal. I’m surprised Texas gave so much in return. Lee is a free agent at the end of the season and he wants a 5-year, $75 million contract, so Texas is not going to be able to sign him. And yet they gave up a good prospect and three good players? That was shocking to me.

  86. hello_im_andrea@yahoo.com

    Hey, you`ve probably been to Fenway or seen the Red Sox play or whatever. But do you know who`s nice about giving out balls and whatnot? Just wondering. Thanks.

  87. andy5353@aol.com

    WAit i forgot tlo answer your question.I have gotten balls from manny,david ortiz,Trot Nixon,Curt schilling.
    -kaylee

  88. logangaudet_10@hotmail.com

    Kaylee, did you just see the collision in right field in the Yanks vs. Rays game?

  89. jimmyjoejoejrchabadu@hotmail.com

    Wow you’ve got a lotta balls from all-stars dam I just missed the collision I was watching the top of 2nd then I went to get something, who collided and any1 hurt?

  90. yanksfan61293@aol.com

    sorry, the game is NOT for sale unless I can make copies, because for now the most I can make is 2 (one for me and Zack)

  91. logangaudet_10@hotmail.com

    Ya Jays start at 10:05 eastern, the collision wasn’t big the second baseman hurt his nose and jaw but is fine but it was rather funny cause the right fielder was calling for it the whole time and the second baseman kept comming.

  92. yanksfan61293@aol.com

    by the way Logan…it MAY be possible to post this game on the internet, I guess I could try now..

  93. yanksfan61293@aol.com

    actually, impossible. Probably, I could e-mail to you as an attachment, since there would be no shipping costs or even if I just put it in a 39 cent envelope, still. Actually, I won’t charge for it, I guess. Unless Zack says otherwise, since he is in it.

    It’s up to you Zack…

  94. Zack

    LOGAN-
    I might write an entry about my glove(s). It’s OLD. I forget when I got it…probably about a decade ago. Not much padding left, so I have to be careful to always catch the ball in the pocket.

    JIMMY-

    The best way to get bats and other extra-special items is to get to know the players, and the best way to do that is to go see them OFTEN while they’re coming up in the Minor Leagues. But if you don’t have any special connections, your best bet is to spend as much time as possible behind the dugouts and hope that you get lucky.

    NELSON-

    Cool.

    DANNY-

    Hopefully on Tuesday in Baltimore. Not sure yet, though.

    KAYLEE-

    Good luck at Fenway! And don’t worry about the plane. Planes are fun. I’ve been on hundreds of flights, and I’m still here.

    YANKS FAN-

    Great news. Can’t wait to see it. I don’t think there’s any point in charging people for the game yet, but I’d say that’s YOUR call more than it is mine. I mean, you’re the one that put all your time (and ideas) into making it. So whatever you choose to do is fine.

    GREGORY-

    I’m surprised, too.

    HELLO_IM_ANDREA-

    Were you asking me or Kaylee about the Red Sox? I’ve only seen ’em twice in the last few years, but I can try to come up with a list of guys if you want.

  95. yanksfan61293@aol.com

    As it turns out, for the game to work completely by sending it via e-mail, you would also have to save the pics I used on your PC. I could e-mail you those too.

  96. yanksfan61293@aol.com

    YES! Yankees win, red sox are losing right now, 1-0.

    I think they are tied for 1st right now…if red sox lose, the Yanks will be in 1st, if the Sox win, it will be a tie for 1st.

    Wang just pitched one of the best pitched games you will ever see without it being a perfect game!

  97. jimmyjoejoejrchabadu@hotmail.com

    Cool set me up with one of the games or w.e it sounds pretty sik and I would probably be able to beat Zack in snagging in the game (maybe) other than that the Jays better not lose again.

  98. yanksfan61293@aol.com

    Well, Jimmyjoejoejrchabadu, it isn’t complete, which for now isn’t a problem, I won’t be sending it till friday (next) anyway. The thing is, for the entire game to work, you need to save ALL the images i used to ur PC. I could send them also, and they don’t take up a lot of space, so no worries!

  99. thechuckster8@aol.com

    It’s not that hard Jimmy; I used my niceness power to force Zack to a terrible location, and it was a cakewalk (mmm cake) from there. Anyways, I’m in Portland Oregon and I went to PGE park last night. I was one of 4 people on 18th street in left field during BP. I got the 1st 2 balls that flew onto the streets, but then stepped in a streetcar track and twisted my ankle (which still hurts) going after the 3rd ball, so I went to the gate and waited until it opened. Inside the stadium, I found another ball simply sitting in the stands. Before the game, Juaquim Arias threw me a ball behind the dugout, and Laynce Nix tossed me the last out of the 1st inning. I got (all cards) 4 autographs of Laynce Nix, 2 of Jason Botts, 3 of Aarom Baldaris, 1 of Juaqim Arias, and 1 of Adam Hyzdu. 1 question for Zack. I am going to a college summer league game this upcoming week, and I’d like to leave with a ball. What do I do? Stand in the parking lot? Stand behind the fence during BP? This is a wood bat college league, so I don’t know how many balls will be leaving the yard. The stadium is small, there is nothing behind the outfield except a street and a grocery store, and the stadium allows exiting and re-entering.

  100. Zack

    CHUCKSTER-
    Great story, but that ***** about your ankle. Sorry to hear it. College players can hit the ball out of the yard, so I think you should hang out beyond the outfield walls and hope for the best. During the game, stay outside the park behind the home plate grandstand. There’ll probably be LOTS of foul balls that reach you (depending on the size of the stadium). This is all generic advice. I’d recommend the same thing if you told me you were going to another Minor League game. Thanks for checking in from so far away. Let me (and everyone else) know how you do…

  101. logangaudet_10@hotmail.com

    Yanksfan, I recieved your e-mail, but nothing showed up? If your giving away the games are you going to be sending to people by mail, or just letting them download them off the internet?

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