My next book

If you’ve been keeping up with my blog for a while, you’ve probably heard about my first book, but in case you haven’t, it’s called How to Snag Major League Baseballs. It came out in 1999. It’s old news.

The NEW news is that I have another baseball book coming out in just a few months, and it has nothing to do with snagging. (Take THAT, Playboy.) It’s going to be called Watching Baseball Smarter, and it’s basically a guide to watching/understanding/appreciating/loving the sport.


I know that might sound a bit generic, but it’s not. Trust me. The book is going to be fun…I mean, it’s already fun. And informative. And well-rounded. It covers history and strategy. It explains the basics and the esoteric. There are anecdotes and statistics and quirky footnotes. There’s trivia. There’s a whole section on why guys are always grabbing their crotches. And there’s plenty of serious stuff, too…stuff about pitching, hitting, base running, fielding, umpires, uniform numbers, stadiums, steroids, superstitions, salaries, surgeries, and so much more. There’s also an extensive glossary of baseball slang. (Anyone know what a “courtesy trot” is? And while we’re at it, do you know the origin of the Baltimore Chop? Or the story of the only player to pitch ambidextrously more than once? Can you name the ten switch-hitters in the Hall of Fame? Do you know how exactly the catcher might change his signs when there’s a runner on second base? Or the difference between a splitter and a forkball? How about when the single earflap became a required addition for batting helmets? Did you know that in the 1870s, the batter could request a high or low pitch and that the umpire could ask the spectators for help if he missed a play? This is all very important.)

Anyway, the idea is that this book is written by a fan FOR FANS, not by a former player siphoned through a ghost writer, or by some stuffy announcer who’s trapped in the broadcast booth, or by a stats geek who only sees the game as a reflection in his calculator.

FYI, the Publisher is Vintage, and the book is scheduled to come out in March of 2007. I hope you’ll look for it. And in the meantime, I hope you won’t mind if I provide updates here and there. (I met my editor two days ago for the first time!) I just found out about this a few weeks ago, so I’m still *really* excited.


  1. Nick

    Wow. I’ll definately pick up a copy of that one. Sounds like a great book. When did you start working on it?



    Last night at the Royals game I wanted to go for 6 balls and double my old record and I have to say I came close. Ball one came from Andrew Sisco I asked him for a ball just by the warning track and he said he’d give it to me, but some usher picked it up and fired it in, moments later Sisco left but came back with a shiny new ball. Next a foul ball came right at me and 2 other people I dived and sprawled across the baseline wall and sno-coned the ball. Next one came from Todd Wellemeyer and the last from Jimmy Gobble which he owed me cause he told me to give away a ball earlier. That was it for BP but I still wanted to get 6. Sitting in the 500s theres arn’t many foul balls but one hit the railing 2 rows in front of me and fell back.******! At the end of the game my friends and I went to the dugout and Lyle Overbay was comming with a ball I called to him and showed him my O sign that got me on the jumbotron and he tossed it my way but hit the usher that was standing on the dugout and my friend crawled over and grabbed it. I was pissed but call it karma cause seconds after Bengie Molina tossed a ball near a few kids they all fumbled it and it rolled right to me. So that was it new record with 5 hope to get more today. And thanks for giving me snagging tips.

  3. Brady

    Hey I can’t wait to read this book, I’ll be sure to buy it. I’ve been trying to write a book for a while now, but I just can’t do it. I get writer’s block after like 16 pages…it’s great that you have another book coming out, I’ll buy it.

    In the Cards


    I was just reading the Mendoza line thing and I also believe it should be at 2 balls per game. Normally I wouldn’t agree cause before last nights game my MLS was 1.75, but after last night game I jumped up to 2.1 so woo hoo!


    Zack, I left a comment on the MLS article, check it out, see what you think.


    Cool Zack! Sounds awesome. I can’t wait ’till it comes out. I’m definitely picking up a copy, and I’ll tell all my baseball fan friends that think they can beat me in a statistic/trivia contest too, so they can study up.


    so as a career, I take it you’re heading the way of writer, baseball writer, in particular.

  8. Zack

    Cool. I’ll definitely sign it for you (if you want, although that might lower the value). I did my first hour of research on it waaay back in December of 2001. Then I worked on it for a few days and gave up for like four months…and that’s kind of how it went for a while. I had a tough time motivating myself and committing to the project early on, but eventually, it just clicked in and I became obsessed with finishing. No Mets game tonight for me. I got other plans. NYC is soggy, anyway.


    Very impressive. Your performance puts my latest game to shame. You’re welcome for the tips, and I’m glad I helped you get over the dreaded Line. (See, everybody? It’s not the Line’s fault if you’re under it. You just have to pick up the pace a bit, and it CAN be done.)


    Hey, thanks. I had more writer’s block on this project than I even want to think about, but I just forced myself to plow through it. After a while, not finishing the book was simply not an option. Talk to you tomorrow…


    That makes two of us.



    I’ll check it out right now and respond over there.


    Thanks thanks thanks. Sorry I made you wait so long for the news, but I just wanted to wait for things to calm down a bit. Keep in mind, though, that while there ARE pieces of trivia sprinkled throughout the book, there’s also much more to it. I figure you know that already based on what I said above, but I just want to make it clear so you (and other people) aren’t disappointed when you finally see it. The thing to do is NOT tell your friends about it right away. You know, wait a week or two while you read the book. THEN beat their brains in with all your new knowledge, and THEN tell them about it. Ha! As for my career, it sure looks like I’m headed in that direction, but I have a feeling that I’m gonna be one of those people who’s still figuring it out when I’m 50.

  9. Nick

    I’d definately have you sign the book. Once I get the new book, I’ll send it up with your first book to have them both signed.

    How long is Watching Baseball Smarter shaping up to be?

  10. Zack

    Sounds good. I think my first book was about 25,000 words. The new one is 64,000. That’s about 250 double-spaced computer pages, but obviously the format (and number of pages) will change when it’s converted into actual book form.

  11. Brady

    I may ask you to sign mine also. I also want you to go to a Cardinals game with me sometime and show me how to get a baseball. I only want one, and no one better to learn from than the master of snagging.


    Well I wrote some great stuff about the Jays game today but it said I was spamming so I’ll be brief.

    Ball #1 Throw to by Joe Nelson

    Ball#2 Foul that sailed 6 rows over me bounced back, got fumbled by a girl and landed 1 row behind me where I lunged and grabbed it.

    Ball #3 Andrew Sisco. Didn’t even have to call out just showed my glove.

    22 balls in 10 games Mendoza line thing up to 2.2 o yea!

  13. Zack

    I’d be delighted to sign it. I’ve collected countless autographs in my life, so I’m always honored (on those rare occasions) when I get to be on the giving end. It’d be cool to meet up with you at a Cardinals game, and it might happen soon because the new Busch is the only current MLB stadium that I haven’t been to.


    I’ve also been accused of “spamming” the comments section, which is especially ridiculous considering this is MY blog. Really sorry about that. I’m trying to figure out what’s going on. In the meantime, congrats on another big day o’ snaggin’. Your MLS continues to soar. Pretty soon, if you keep this up, you’ll be approaching three balls per game.

  14. Brady

    Yeah, I live 8 hours from St. Louis. I already went this year, (three game series with the Rockies in June) but im trying to get my mom to go to a playoff game with me…(if they make the playoffs). We’d have to set that up somehow. If not, I’m definitely going next year.


    went to yankees/angels today. no balls, 1 auto.
    Career: 4 games, 1 ball (foul ball)


    hey zack, cant wait for the book im always reading baseball books, i just got done reading juiced by
    Jose Canseco and it was pretty not really a snagger so this book about baseball is something im interested in..


    The sox are fading like pigs…At least i still got the mets they will make it to the playoffs.mikE timlin kEEPS GIVING UP GAMES.CANT WAIT FOR THE BOOK TO COME OUT.

  18. Zack

    Eight hours is FAR. I don’t think I could ever live in a place that requires such a trek. I’ll be amazed if the Cardinals don’t make the playoffs.


    That game was sold out, right? That makes it much much MUCH harder to do anything.


    You’re the first person I’ve ever “met” who’s read Canseco’s book, or at least the first person to admit it. I’m glad to hear that you’re looking forward to mine.


    Same goes for you (minus the Canseco part). As for the Sox…yeah, ouch.


    I have actually seen it, but thanks for bringing it to my attention. I’m sure there’s some stuff about me that I’ve missed. This one, though, is on the web site of a guy I met once. He asked me if I’d write something for the site, and I told him he could just pick one of my old blog entries and use that. (If anyone wants to use my stuff, please ask me first.) It’s a shame that he chose the ONE pic of me in which I’m wearing a Yankees cap.


    Brady, you live 8 hours from the nearest MLB team? I live about 10 hours and i still havn’t been to one


    Zack, I took a picture of you in the park with your 2,000th ball for a website I made but I deleted that site. Sorry.

  21. Chad

    Is it alright if I do a post about you catching #724? I don’t know if it will be long or short. I have a cool video and pic of you catching barry’s homer.


    Responsding to your comment on the MLS article:

    Sorry for completely misunderstanding what you were saying about the MLS. I like your idea of group snagging and trying to beat the MLS. By the way, I actually agree with the MLS being two now, so I think we should make it official.

    By the way, I snagged four balls at the Mets/Phils game yesterday:

    BALL #1 – Tossed by Shawn Green (woo-hoo!)

    BALL #2 – Thrown by Mike DiFelice

    BALL #3 – Retrieved from behind the right field fence using my cup-trick (that was fun)

    BALL #4 – A home run hit into the right field Loge which landed two seats to my left that I simply picked up (no real competition).

    I snagged four balls within 50 minutes if the gates opening, but nothing after that.

    59 balls in 19 games this season = 3.105 balls per game.

  23. Brady

    Yep. 8 hours. It’s a long ways, lol. Talk to you at (4 your time) Zack. Talk to you then.

  24. Nick

    When you get an idea for a book, how do you find a publisher? Do you go to the publishers with just an idea or do you go to them only when the book is mostly written?


    Zack, I run a monthly baseball book group out here in Seattle, and we’re always looking for new stuff to read, so I’d be happy to pick your new book for March or April…

    (and, I know the answers to most of the questions you put there, but I’m a big baseball nerd too, so go figure.)


  26. Zack

    Okay. Well, I guess I have no choice but to sue you.


    You mean on your MLBlog? Yeah, that sounds great. Thanks for your interest.


    Nice day at Shea. I really hope I can get a ball from Green at some point. How Jewish/religious is he? I know how to ask for a ball in Hebrew. Were you in the RF Loge when he tossed it to you? Or along the foul line on the Field Level? The MLS being two sounds good to me, but let’s wait just a bit longer to give everyone a chance to speak up.


    The time has come…


    Aarrghh!!! Even though I linked to your blog in my last entry, I still haven’t gotten a chance to read your last Camden entry. I’ll do it soon, though. Last night, I only got up to the part where your dad forgot his license, and then I got interrupted. Some people do occasionally take their books directly to the publishers, but that’d be like walking into a Major League stadium on the team’s off day and saying that you can throw a wicked splitter. No one’s really gonna take you seriously. The proper way to go about it is to find an agent and then have him/her (my agent is the latter) send it off to the publishers. If you’re a very accomplished writer, a publisher could come to you with an idea and ask you to write it. Or you could just submit a brief idea to them, and they might be like, “Yeah! Yeah! That sounds great. Here’s a lot of money. Now go write the book.” In my case, I took a chance and wrote this whole book before I even looked for an agent. Many writers, though, sell their books by submitting a proposal and a few sample chapters. In fact, most agents and publishers don’t even want to see the whole book.


    This is great news. Naturally, I have to ask which of those questions you can’t answer. I’m relieved—but not surprised—that you can’t answer all of them because the book is meant to appeal to both beginners and die-hards (and of course everyone in between).


    I’m joking, by the way.


    I also got four balls yesterday at shea.

    ball #1: from chad bradford after he was done warming up.

    ball #2: el duque was doing some running drills when a ball landed right in his path from bp. he picked it up and tossed it to me. another unmarked 2004 all-star game ball

    ball #3: gary varsho was warming up right in front of the dugout with rich dubee. i asked gary for it and he said maybe. three minutes later i had the ball. brand new. very nice.

    ball #4: down the left field line, randy wolf was playing catcher for the fireballer jamie moyer, when i liner was hit in BP. he jumped out of the way but it hit his foot. he picked it up and threw it over his head and directly to me.

    then after that some lady asked me to help her get a ball for her granddaughter. i said sure and then 5 minutes later i left because it was soooooooooo crowded.

  28. Zack

    ****. I’m missing out. ANOTHER impressive performance. I’m happy for you, but I keep feeling worse and worse about my own miserable performance this week.


    Zack – Good luck on getting a ball from Green someday. He threw a couple into the stands while shagging fly balls during BP out in right field. Both balls he threw went to foul territory down the right field line. I honestly don’t know how religious he is, but I remember him taking a day off to observe Yom Kippur a couple years ago. He might speak Hebrew; you could try it.

    Joneli – Were you the one wearing the “URI” shirt and a green hat yesterday? If so, I saw you catch three of your baseballs. Interesting.

  30. Zack

    Thanks for the info. I’ll probably stick to my spot in the Loge and hope for the best. Good point about Yom Kippur. Somehow, that slipped my mind. Shame on me.

  31. Zack

    Excellent. Thanks. I hope you’re not watching ESPN because the Cardinals are playing some sloppy baseball.


    Zack, if you sue me then how the heck will I be able to buy your book? Think about it.

  33. Zack

    Hmm. I guess I could sue you for everything you own except for like $13.95. But that’s a good point. I’ll tell my legal team to hold off for now…

  34. Brady

    The article is going great, so far. Do you have any type of instant messenger? I can show you what I’ve done so far. It’s already 1,112 words, and I’m nowhere near finished.

  35. Zack

    Wow, 1,112 words already? I hope you’re not using everything I said word for word because I’m really not THAT interesting. I avoid all instant messengers. Too time-consuming. But I’d love to see what you got so far. Want to email it to me?


    Hey Guys–

    I’ve decided to join SABR (society of american baseball research). Because of my age (middle school), there is a contest that I can win 2 years free membership by writing a research paper. How do you like my topic:

    Comparing Barry Bonds and Babe Ruth based on Runs Created

    I will have to mention the words “steriods” and “BALCO” in there at some point, but there is no “steriod factor” statistic that is available yet.

  37. Brady

    It’s a surprise :D
    You all will soon know. Zack, I’m going to e-mail the final copy to you soon. It’s over 3,363 words. I’m going to put it on the blog first, but I have to mention that it’s the property of the Stuttgart Daily Leader. I’m e-mailing it soon.


  38. Brady

    finished. total is 3,314 words.
    emailing it now…btw, i havent proof read it yet, so if you find a mistake let me know.



    I want an mlblog so badly…and I definitely have enough money for it (my bar mitzvah is in 2 weeks!!!)

    Let’s call it: Aspiring Yankees Owner or GM (cuz thats what I am)


    brady what newspaper d’you write for? do they have a website where I can see some articles you wrote?


    THEY DON’T PAY YOU!!!!????

    wow, how do you make income?

    I babysit and work in my dad’s warehouse (sometimes)


    Hey man, I’m 13.

    Still, they should pay you for your contributions. And whaddaya think of my topic for SABR?

    Comparing Barry Bonds and Babe Ruth based on Runs Created

    I will have to mention the words “steriods” and “BALCO” in there at some point, but there is no “steriod factor” statistic that is available yet.

  43. Brady

    Yeah it sounds cool. good luck with that. I did an article on Bonds and steroids for my newspaper once.

  44. Zack

    I guess the answer is obvious now if you’ve read all the comments in the last hour.


    You’re a genius. Thanks for taking the time to put that together. It’s way cool.


    I think that’s a great topic. Go for it. And get an MLBlog already! I once wrote a research paper in high school in which I compared wood bats to aluminum bats. The assignment was do to a “product comparison,” heh heh. And for the record, I got an A+.


    I got it, and it’s **** good. Wow. Thanks for all your hard work. I can’t believe you put that whole thing together in just one night. And you’re only 16? Man, I couldn’t write nearly that well at your age. Matthew Leach better watch out. (Whenever you feel that the final draft is ready, feel free to post it or email it or whatever.)

  45. Nick

    Nice job, Chad. Wait, why am I posting a comment for Chad on Zack’s blog? Oh, well.

    When is the next game, Zack?

  46. Zack

    Not sure. I’m half-tempted to go to Yankee Stadium (for the Tigers) tomorrow or Wednesday, but if not then, I’ll have to wait a full week ’til the Mets come home. Shea Stadium. Ew.


    hey z, regis here. just wanted to say how cool a book your new book sounds. put me down for a copy. actually, you should send all your blog readers a free copy – don’t you think? though seems like that would be a lot of free copies. anyway, good snagging,



    hey zack. how’t it going? just read regis’s idea – a free book for all your blog readers. that’s a cool idea. don’t you think? or, maybe you could give away your book to readers who write in with the best snagging stories or who have the best snagging totals for a week? just ideas…. jules


    Guys, are you serious? Free copies? Come on now!!! I don’t think purchasing the book is going to set you guys back so much. Lets be fair here, huh. Yeah, yeah, yeah, I know its a thought, but in my humble opinion, not a great one. Sorry bloggers, I have to truly give the idea a seriously strong BOO!!!!


    ZACK (& other would be advisors) –

    Free books for all is a baaaad idea. That opens the floodgates for free-loaders, implies that the value of the book is less than the selling price, costs the author in royalties (which are all too miniscule and elusive in the competitive world of publishing), and puts the author on the spot if he overlooks someone.

    Hiss, boooooo!

    Giving away books is not part of an author’s job description. An author’s job is to write the book. The rest is up to the publishing house. Those who respect the author and his book can show & prove this respect by purchasing a copy.

    As for Regis and also the correspondent called Jules (as well as all the others who blithely & self-servingly suggest your handing out books gratis), my suggestion is for them to write their own books, then let’s see if they’re willing to donate free copies of their handiwork en masse.

    Aside from this, I very much like the sound of the book. And am eager to go out and buy a copy when it appears in book, stores. I am in awe of what you have accomplished. And respect you like crazy.



    Zack I bet if you went to todays Mets game you would have gotten like 20 balls. Attendance was only 8,766.

  52. Nick

    I WANT to pay for the book. Zack took the time to write it, he should be paid for his efforts.

    8,766 is insane. What happened? No one told New Yorkers that the Mets were in town?


    NONONONONONO Yankee Stadium please don’t go. Actually, if you do RF and I do LF, no prob, go. My friend and I will probably try and sneek down to the dugout and get autographs.


    yeah, boodle, i agree with you. regis’s idea is a pretty bad one. i’m sure it’s a brilliant book, and i want to pay for it too. sorry regis, i just don’t agree with you anymore.


    I was in the emergency room for 8 hours last night.The end result was a broken wrist i learned that some doctors dont know what they are doing sometimes.Now i must go watch the red sox game

  56. Zack

    Nice article. I had not heard about that. Thanks. Where will you be on Wednesday during batting practice? Right field or left field? I’m not yet sure if I’ll be there.


    Thanks for the compliment, but I hope you were joking about the free copies.


    Do I think it’s a cool idea? Absolutely. If you buy a carton of books, I’ll be happy to give them out to people for free. I’ll even let you pick a few of the people who will get them.


    Jules will give you a free copy.


    I’m with you. Thanks.


    I don’t blame anyone for wanting a free copy because c’mon, who doesn’t ever want free stuff? Still, thanks for sticking up for me. You’re right…it just wouldn’t be practical to give out free books left and right. I only got 10 free copies of my first book, and those went fast (two parents, three siblings, girlfriend, uncles, aunts, cousins, etc.). Everyone else who asked me for a free copy was out of luck, even my BEST friends. I was like, “Yeah, sure, I’ll give you a copy. Let me first go out and buy one.”


    I knew there’d be a tiny crowd, but it was a 12:10pm game, and I was up until 7:15am doing work on THIS book. Plus, it was drizzling, and there’s no way there would’ve been BP. It would’ve been a good game for foul balls, but it just wasn’t practical for me to be there.


    You da man. It took over 1,100 hours, for the record.


    If I do go to Yankee Stadium, I’ll be staying in right field for all of batting practice, so don’t worry. But like I said, I have no idea if/when I’ll go back there. It would be cool to see the Tigers, though.


    Wow again. That’s a LOT of text. Are you thinking of breaking it up with some visuals?


    Are you alright?! How did you break it?!


    hey z, yeah i was joking about the free copies. of course you can’t give the book away to all your blog readers – that would be a LOT of free books! anyway, buying your book is a way to support your baseball writing, so i’m up for that. gotta run. regis


    yeah,I am alright….it may need surgery but…..It willl be fine not painless though..I tripped on water and landed on it.

  59. Zack

    Cool. I figured. Sometimes, things get lost in translation.


    Glad you’re okay. Why can’t Julian Tavarez land on his wrist?


    I didn’t like it. I loved it.


    Hey I was just looking at the Jays sched and only 13 home games left!******, but I remember back in April or so I said some of the games I was going to, but didnt go to all and I think you predicted 32 or 33 balls for me and I might go to 4 more Jays games to achieve dat goal, but more likely going for 30. So 8 more balls in 4 more games. Its gonna be tight!


    Ah after a couple minutes of looking though old posts I found the prediction.

    Hmm, I don’t have a crystal ball…just BASEballs…so I’m gonna say that you’ll end up with 31 balls. Just a wild guess.

    Posted by: Zack | May 9, 2006 04:00 PM

  62. Zack

    Way to go back in time. (Another reminder that I have to watch my words, even in these comments.) So you can get another…what…nine balls in four games? It’s doable. Get out there and bring me some good news.


    I believe its very dooable especially since my good snagging vs the Royals 8 balls in 2 games. Before that I snagged 14 balls in 8 games wow, big turn of events.

  64. Zack

    No MySpace page. That site annoys me, actually. But it’s helped you out, huh? I might have to look into that.


    You’re getting better. That happens. When I first started collecting balls, I was averaging under two per game for a while.


    Just thought I should toss out there that in the 10 games this year that I have attended BP I’m up to 53 baseballs. In three of my last four games I’ve managed a personal record 8 balls. The ushers at Safeco Field are MUCH more laid back than they have been in the past. It’s incredible. (My lifetime total is now up to 412)

  66. Zack

    DUDE! Where ya been? It’s good to hear from you again. Very impressive snagging totals. I guess the Mendoza Line of Snagging (MLS) is no concern to you. Excellent news that the ushers are chilling out. That never seems to happen. Stadium security just gets stricter and stricter in New York (and just about everywhere else), so I’m glad you’re taking advantage.


    At Yankee Stadium on Wednesday, I’ll probably hang out in left field since the place is always so crowded, especially in right field. I’ll try to move around as much as I can though.

  68. Zack

    Cool. You have a ball-retrieving device of your own, right? It would be stupid if we were both competing for the same balls in the same section. Anyway, it’s doubtful that I’m going because it’s $5 night, which means the entire upper deck will be sold out (as if it wouldn’t have been otherwise), so the cheapest available ticket will likely be $43. Screw that.


    After my trip to Chicago and Milwaukee last week, I sent out thank you letters to all the players that tossed my nephews balls and asking for an autograph on the 3×5 file cards I sent along with SASEs. Well 5 days later, I have already received one back from Juan Mateo of the Cubs along with 3 signed file cards. Great signer and turnaround.

    The rest of the players were out on the road when I sent the letters out, so I don’t expect to see anything from them for some time…if at all.


    Yeah, I have a cup-trick thing that’s way too complicated. I’ll just say that it involves two cups, duct tape, a needle, a plastic baggy full of coins (for added weight), and a bright red string. But it works, so I don’t feel the need to change it. I only developed it a couple months ago, so I’ve only retrieved two balls with it so far.

    Yeah, there’s no reason to compete head-to-head. We would just be cutting each other’s “production” in half.********. Stupid Yankee Stadium.

  71. Zack

    Good idea. It’s a nice way to show your appreciation and complement the baseball collection.


    Wait a sec, were you out in right field at my last Yankee game? There was someone with a cup trick that involved coins…pennies…and they spilled out all over the warning track, and one of the players actually took a minute to pick them all up for the guy. Was that you?


    No, that wasn’t me. I’ve never had an embarrasing moment invovling my cup-trick. But that’s pretty funny. I wish I was there. How old was this guy? And what color was the cup? (Wait, why do I care what color it was?)


    Even if its $5 night, you can still get a ticket from a scalper for $10-20. It worked for me last time I went, which was a sold out $5 night.

  74. Zack

    He was young. I should’ve said “kid” instead of “guy.” He was younger than you.



    Are the scalpers willing to sell their tickets that cheap at 4pm?


    Oh, okay. Yeah, color. My cup is like light green. Anyway…

    Scalpers are always tough. Try eBay. I got the tickets for Wednesday there. Two tickets for $25 including shipping. Pretty good deal. Check it out.


    Hey Zack,

    I’m going to be at PNC park in a few weeks and am curious what the pregame scene is like there. It’ll be a mets pirates game and I’m hoping to get some balls and autographs. Thanks




    yep that was me…what were you wearing? im sure i probably saw you though.


    Dave, I went to PNC Park a few months ago, so I’ll tell you what I know. The gates open an hour and a half before the game (I think its two hours on weekends). You can go to the center field/right field area much earlier than that and stand about 450 feet from home plate and see the field through a fence. Someone got a ball there during BP when I was there, so its worth a shot. When the gates open, I suggest going to the left field seats in fair territory. Home run balls pepper the seats out there. You will only see the opposing team’s BP (in your case the Mets’), so wear Mets gear (at least a hat) and know all the players names. The pitchers will be out there throughout BP, so they throw balls all over the place. A couple of the Rockies pitchers signed out there when I was there, so try that. During the game, work the dugouts. I got two balls there. I’m sure Zack can give a lot more tips, but these are the best I can do.


    Joneli, I had a tye-dye orange Mets jersey (during the Mets’ BP) and I was up in the RF Loge. During the Phillies’ BP, I had a plain white shirt and a fake Phillies hat on, and I was up in the LF Loge). Cool.


    By the way Dave, by “center field/right field area,” I mean the walkway behind the stands where there are souvenier and food areas, not the actual seating area. I think it’s called the “River Walk” or something, since it’s right along the Allegheny River. Anyway, it’s worth it going early. Go there two and a half hours before the gates open, when the Pirates’ BP starts. Trust me, it’s worth it.


    I got a ticket for $20 at 4pm. Besides, with the Yankees playing 2 day games and a game with no BP, I doubt I’ll see you.

  82. Zack

    I’m always afraid of being scammed, now that tickets have bar codes, so I don’t know if I’d want to do the eBay thing.


    Greg gave good advice. I was only there for one game back in 2001, so I don’t remember much. The left field seats are tough because there aren’t many rows (narrow section), and the rows are long, so if ONE person sits down, it kills a whole lot of space where you otherwise could’ve been running for balls. The corner spot down the 3rd base line is a good option, but that’ll get taken immediately if you’re not the first one in. Right field is tough because it’s steep. Hard to go anywhere fast. PNC is actually a pretty tough place to snag, although the small crowd sizes will obviously work to your advantage. Then again, there might be a lot of people there for the Mets.


    Thanks for letting me know.


    I know. And the answer is…that…the Yankees and Tigers were rained out.


    It’s extremely doubtful that I’ll be there tomorrow. Like, less than 5%.


    I’ll be posting a new entry within the next few hours, with lots of thoughts I’ve had about the Bonds home run ball.


    sweet Zack cannot wait to see it…

    when d’you think itll be upppppppppppppppp???


    ZACK! i hate ya man your curse is rubbing off onto the jays. Chacin JUST got pulled out because of an injury looking like his left hand. He was pitching well to 1 run through 5 the jays just gave him the lead to.



    :D well atleast after i just posted that frasor came in in relief and got chacin a strikeout :D. chacin left with a 1-2 count. in the 6th not thr 5th


    Gustavo with an index finger cramp, hope its not serious, but at least he’s in line for the win.


    Jimmy-That is nothing compared to my broken wrist.Did Francona give up on julian tacarez he hasnt pitched in like a week.Not that us sox fans want him to pitch.


    Hehe Kaylee, the Red Sox are out of it this year, they won’t even win the wildcard. And don’t say otherwise; we are leading by 7 games, plus David Ortiz is having heart problems.

    However, I do feel bad about Ortiz…just cuz I hate the Red Sox doesn’t mean I don’t have compassion for human beings with potentially life-threatening things. I wish Ortiz the best, and that’ll probably be the only time you’ll ever here me say that.


    My Top 10 Reasons Carl Pavano should die:

    He was given too much money. He know’s it. He’s a thief.

    He ***** balls.

    He a ******

    He shouldn’t be a Yankee.

    He’s a pain in the ***.

    All he does is get injured.

    He can’t pitch

    My mom could pitch better than him.

    He is a piece of ****.

    See Above


    yanksfan:You are leading by 6.5 arent you to be exact..But i agree.I hope ortiz gets back soon.


    Top 10 Ways Carl Pavano Will Get Injured:

    1. Falling down an open elevator shaft while blindfolded, spraining his big toe.

    2. Driving his Porsche off a cliff, through a ring of fire, into shark-infested waters. Eaten alive. Day To Day.

    3. Carpal-Tunnel Syndrome from pitching as himself on PlayStation 2’s MVP 2K6.

    4. Wrenched knee after tripping over the Red Sox playoff hopes.

    5. Paralyzing shock after text-messaged by fed-up Steinbrenner that he’s being permanently demoted to Staten Island Yankees.

    6. Severely bruised buttocks after a confusing night spent in the wrong bar in the West Village. Understandably doesn’t inform team of injury.

    7. Dying of boredom after listening to a Mets fan recalling their “magical” ’86 season.

    8. Singed eyebrows from accidentally hang-gliding into an active volcano. 15 Day DL.

    9. Shoulder dislocated while pitching BP from powerful gust generated by A-Rod swing-and-miss.

    10. Fatal pre-game beat down delivered in Yankees clubhouse courtesy of Yogi Berra.

    As much as I hope David Ortiz makes a good recovery, I HATE pavano cuz he’s on my team and he’s a waste of 40 million dollars.

  92. Zack

    As you have already seen, the new entry is up. Nice lists. Did you come with the one about his injuries? That was FUNNY.


    I’ve already told you what needs to happen for the Jinx to be reversed.


    I appreciate your interest.


    An index finger cramp? Poor baby.


    I hope your wrist is getting better.


    Don’t worry. I still love you. Thanks for the ball you threw me at Shea Stadium on July 19, 2004.


    I went to the Yankees game today, and I got a lot of autographs. I got Todd Jones, Mike Maroth, Joel Zumaya, Carlos Guillen, Scott Proctorx2, Jason Grilli, Curtis Granderson, and Placido Polanco on cards. I got Andrew Miller, the 1st 2006 Draft Pick in the bigs, on an index card, and Ivan Rodriguez on a ball sweet spot in Blue Bic pen. 1 ball from Jason Grilli.

  94. Zack

    I’m jealous that you got stuff from Grilli. I talked to him on the phone a few times during the off-season, but still haven’t gotten to see him in person. He’s probably forgotten me by now. Anyway, congrats on a great day.

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