8/3/13 at John Thurman Field
This was just one of those days, you know?
It was Star Wars night in Modesto, a fireworks game, and normally, I would NEVER, EVER consider doing a game like this. That morning, I found out that a bunch of friends would be going, so naturally, I wanted to go. However, I had tickets to the Nuts games that Sunday and Tuesday, so naturally, my parents did not want to do.
I had been talking with Megan Benveniste and Taylor Fernandez on Twitter, and they both wanted me to come to the game, since I hadn’t seen either of them in over a month. Taylor then suggested that I ask Will to give me a ride, since my parents didn’t want to go. Will would be on his way from Oakland, at the A’s game to Stockton, and since I live fairly near him, plus my house is on the way from Oakland to Stockton. I asked him, and he was willing to allow me to tag along, since I already had a ticket, which is awesome of him! So, go give him a follow on Twitter.
My dad and I met up with him just before 6pm, then Will and I headed off to Modesto, walking into the stadium just before the first pitch.
Since I had missed BP and pre-game warm-ups, I decided not to ballhawk, and just enjoy the game, if I got a ball, cool!
I decided to stand behind the Nuts dugout in the top of the 1st, just hoping to snag the 3rd out ball before I go join everyone else. I didn’t get it, but before I got back to my seat, a few ladies came up to me and stopped me.
One of them asked if I took pictures and posted them online. I was a little confused and worried at the time, so I didn’t know how to react, but I said yes. This lady then told me that she was Trevor Story’s girlfriend, and asked if I could email her my pictures of Trevor, and in return, she said she would have him give me a bat (I already have one of his) or something like that. She gave me her email, and we parted ways.
From this point on, I made it a point to get as many shots of Trevor as possible. Conveniently, the Nuts went on a roll in the 1st inning, and Trevor got an at bat in the inning.
How awesome are those jerseys? As soon as I sat down in my seat, an idea popped into my mind. How cool would it be if I could somehow get Trevor’s jersey in trade for the pictures? It was wishful, thinking, but you never know!
The graphics on the scoreboard for the Nuts players were pretty cool.
Seriously, the jerseys were amazing.
During the at-bat, this man jogged out to the mound to chat with the Ports pitcher. I know it isn’t Webster Garrison, but I thought the Ports pitching coach was Jimmy Escalante. If anyone can find out for me who it is, that would be great! I’ve been out of the loop lately, so any info would be great!
UPDATE: Will has sinced filled me in that it is Garvin Alston. Thank You Will!
Meanwhile, Tanner Peters was struggling to get out of the 1st inning, as he had already allowed 1 walk, 3 hits, 3 runs, and only had 1 out.
Trevor then connected on a pitch, sending it to center field, scoring the Nuts’ 4th run of the inning, giving them a 4-1 lead.
This put him on 1st and there was still only 1 out.
He took a lead…
And took off, sliding into 2nd base safely, with a steal.
However, it wasn’t the last picture of the night, don’t worry. This was my view for the game.
In the bottom of each inning, I made a half-hearted attempt at the Ports 3rd out ball. Tyler Massey struck out looking to end the 4th inning, and he didn’t like the call very much. Bruce Maxwell, the catcher, rolled the ball back towards the mound. In the time being, Massey had been jawing at the umpire a bit. I turned around to head back to my seat, when I heard a yell to see Massey charing full speed at the home plate umpire! It was quite a spectacle to watch!
Throughout the game, Will was poking fun at the Nuts mascot, Wally (the Walnut). During an inning break, Wally walked right up to Will, and they stood face to face for a little bit.
Vanessa was right in front of it, so she got a much better shot.
Funny, is it not?
In the 6th or 7th inning, Taylor asked somebody to take a group picture. The 7 of us sat together for most of the game.
I’ve linked to all of their Twitter accounts, so go follow them all!
The day before, Vanessa had tweeted the Nuts On-Field Emcee, Mike on the Mic, to rig every on-field promotion in her favor. Mike left her tickets to the game, and sure enough, he had something for her to do! She and Megan got to do the Metro PCS 4G Race! Vanessa carried an orange G, while Megan had the orange 4, and they had to race from one end of the dugout to the other, and back, the winner on each side receiving a prize (There were 2 other people on the 1st base side doing it as well). It ended up being very interesting, and I got a Vine of it…
If you can’t tell (Or were too lazy to click on the link), once Megan and Vanessa got to Al the Almond, at one side of the 3rd base dugout, Vanessa pushed Megan down to the ground. I didn’t get this part, unfortunately. Then, you can see Vanessa hitting Megan repeatedly with her sign. She then ran on to win the race.
Hands down, that was one of the best parts of the night for me!
In the bottom of the 8th, David Kandilas struck out, then Bruce Maxwell tossed me the ball, so I did not get shut out!
Remember how Will and been messing with Wally the Walnut all game? In the 9th inning, the agreed on a truce.
The Ports had scored individual runs in the 1st, 2nd, 7th, and 8th, tying the game up at 4, so after the Nuts were unable to push anything across in the 9th, the game went into extras, and my favorite player, Seth Frankoff came into the game to pitch.
He pitched a 1-2-3 10th inning, sending the game to the 11th.
In both the 10th and 11th innings, the Ports grounded into a double play, both times, when they had been in a great opportunity to score. Then, with runners on 1st and 2nd in the 12th, with only 1 out, the next two batter struck out.
Finally, in the 13th inning, 4 hits in a row lead to 2 runs, pushing the Ports ahead 6-4.
The Nuts were unable to score in the 13th and after the game, I rushed down to the Ports dugout to try and get one of the 3 broken bats from the game. Both Bruce Maxwell and B.A. Vollmuth said they couldn’t give it to me, then Myrio Richard gave his to someone else, so I asked Webster Garrison for the lineup card, which he was able to give to me!
At that point, I joined back up with the rest of the group, at which point the fireworks started.
Nothing special, I’ve seen fireworks before.
After they ended, I hopped in Will’s car, and he took me back to my place. Again, HUGE thanks to Will for being able to drive me!
I seriously couldn’t have asked for a better night! Saturday night watching Minor League Baseball with some of your awesomest friends? What is not to love?
- 24th Game of the Year… 7th MiLB Game of the Year
- 1 ball at this game
- 48 MiLB Balls in 7 MiLB Games = 6.85 MiLB Balls Per Game
- 13 Consecutive MiLB Games with at least 1 Ball
- 63 Lifetime Minor League baseballs
- 71 Baseballs this Season
- 114 total balls
Nick Badders is a unofficial reporter for MLB.com. He writes the blog, 7000 Coliseum Way, and you can follow him on Twitter @nickbatters or his blog @7000ColiseumWay. You can also LIKE his blog on Facebook or follow him @nickbatters or his blog @7000ColiseumWay on Instagram. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.