Category: Red Sox

7/14/13 at the Oakland Coliseum

Well…

This was my first game in about 2 weeks, and I was excited to be back!

It was MLB Network backpack day (joy) and my mom and I got there at 9:45, for the 11am gate opening, 1pm game time.

My dad would be showing up later with my grandmother and uncle, as they had seats behind the A’s bullpen.

It was the final game before the All Star Break, so we were hoping to hear Grant Balfour announced as Bartolo Colon’s replacement.

I decided to take a lap around the stadium first, as I usually do.

IMG_0741

As I walked past Gate B, I noticed the stairs to BB were not closed off, so I walked up.

IMG_0743

This was the scene from the top.
IMG_0745

My right.

IMG_0746

My left.

IMG_0747

This was the best view I could get of inside. Nothing that I could see going on.

IMG_0748

I kept walking and headed past Gate C.

IMG_0755

This was sitting just outside Gate D.

IMG_0759

I continued on past Gate A.

IMG_0761

Where the stairs were also not yet closed off.

IMG_0763

Nothing fancy inside.

IMG_0765

I walked back up to MM.

IMG_0769

We were 2 of the 7 people in line…

IMG_0773

About 30 minutes before the Gates opened, this truck drove into the Eastside Club.

IMG_0770

This is what was on it. Table cloth or something?

IMG_0774

This was just after Will, Ross, and Wiggi showed up. There was a small pile of flags and banners.

IMG_0775

This was also the time that the backpacks arrived in boxes.

IMG_0781

This is what it said on the side.

IMG_0782

Since there were only 4 boxes, that meant there were 800 jerseys at this gate. That’s only 5% of them. Clearly, MM is not very popular.

The gates opened at 11:05, where I ran inside to the Red Sox bullpen.

IMG_0790

It was packed, I had no way to move from where I was standing. It was very empty when I got there, I was too busy focusing on the players to notice. Even when I called out to players, nothing worked. I got shut out from the Red Sox. That’s all.

I then went over to the A’s bullpen, where Ross, Will, and Drew were standing.

IMG_0787

They were over there so Drew could get his flag signed.

20130731-013953.jpg

Meanwhile, A’s pitchers were stretching.

IMG_0794

It was even more crowded. Nothing. So yep. I was shut out for both the Red Sox and A’s.

Eventually, John Jaso came out to stretch and get ready for the game.
IMG_0802

IMG_0808

As he was finishing stretches, All-Star Bartolo Colon came out to run and get loose for the game.

IMG_0812

Meanwhile, Ryan Lavarnaway was getting loose as well, on the Red Sox side.

IMG_0817

Last season, when the Red Sox came to town, I had tried to figure out the names of their two bullpen catchers, but had no luck. After a bit of reserach, one of them is #86, Brian Abraham.

IMG_0849

The other, is #88, Alex Martinez.

IMG_0852

As Boston’s starting pitcher, Brandon Workman was warming up, A’s starter Bartolo Colon was doing the same.

IMG_0941

IMG_0954
One of the players on the Red Sox is 2012 Athletic Johnny Gomes.
IMG_0999

As both teams started stretching, former teammates David Ortiz and Josh Reddick enjoyed a conversation with each other

IMG_1017

Right before the national anthem, there was this cool ceremony, as it was Law Enforcement Day.
IMG_1029

Ryan Lavarnaway was busy warming up in the final minutes before the first pitch.

IMG_1099

As it was a Sunday game, little leaguers got to take the field with A’s players for the national anthem.

IMG_1111

I loved the socks that Eric Sogard and Josh Reddick were wearing.
IMG_1127

Seriously, these stirrups don’t get any more awesome.
IMG_1151

Like I mentioned earlier in the entry, I was awaiting an announcement on Grant Balfour being chosen to the All Star game. Since Bartolo was pitching this Sunday, the game before the All Star game, he would not be able to pitch, allowing a replacement to be chose. It was highly speculated that his replacement would be Grant Balfour, and sure enough, between the 2nd and 3rd innings, Balfour’s entrance song, One, started playing on the Coliseum speakers, the announcement was put up on the screen, and everyone started All Star RAGING!!!!

As for the game itself, Dustin Pedroia got the scoring started in the top of the 6th with an RBI single.

IMG_1162

Meanwhile, Brandon Workman was in his first MLB Start, and he was dominating the Oakland offense.

IMG_1394

Through the first 6 innings, he had only allowed 1 baserunner. John Jaso walked in the 4th.

IMG_1419

Colon, meanwhile, was also pitching effectively. After allowing 3 hits in the first two innings, he pitched 1-2-3 3rd, 4th, and 5th innings.

IMG_1498

However, he allowed 3 singles in the 6th, the 3rd of those being the Pedroia RBI single I earlier mentioned
IMG_1532

In the top of the 7th, Mike Carp doubled to lead off the inning, then scored on a Brock Holt base hit.

IMG_1542

This prompted Sean Doolittle to enter the game, shutting down the Red Sox in the 7th.

IMG_1551

At this point, the A’s had still not managed a hit, until Coco Crisp lead off the inning with a single.

IMG_1578

After a John Jaso popout, Josh Donaldson stepped to the plate.
IMG_1599

And smashed a home run to center field tying the game at 2.

Craig Breslow, former Athletic, was then brought into the game, to finish off the 7th inning.IMG_1625After a quiet 8th inning, it was time to head into the top of the 9th. It was time for Grant Balfour to come into the game.

IMG_1762

This meant it was time to RAGE!!

I guess I was on TV, so thanks to Ryan Dalton for sending me this picture.

20130731-023716.jpg

The inning was lead off by Johnny Gomes, who struck out, then began to argue with the umpire.

IMG_1768

He was ejected…

IMG_1770

I don’t remember exactly what he was upset by, but he was upset.

IMG_1771

Nobody scored in the 9th inning, so the game headed into extras. Ryan Cook came on to pitch the 10th.
IMG_1801

He pitched a solid inning, only allowing a single to Jacoby Ellsbury.

Yoenis Cespedes singled to lead off the bottom of the 10th.

IMG_1820

Then the umpires convened for a moment.

IMG_1835

And Cespedes was standing on second, due to the throwing error from the Red Sox shortstop.

IMG_1837

John Farrell was quite upset.

IMG_1845

Josh Reddick proceded to strike out.
IMG_1876

Which was followed by Cespedes getting thrown out trying to steal 3rd and Nate Freiman grounding out.

Ryan Lavarnaway was hit by a pitch to load the bases in the 11th inning for the Sox.

IMG_1947

However, Cook was able to get out of it.
IMG_1954

This sent the A’s to the bottom of the 11th inning.

IMG_1959

After a Chris Young walk, Eric Sogard laid down a sac bunt.

IMG_1972

This put Chris Young on 2nd base with 1 out.

IMG_1986

After a Coco Crisp groundout and Derek Norris walk, Josh Donaldson stepped to the plate and connected.

IMG_2017

On a base hit, bringing Chris Young around to score!

IMG_2019

Donaldson set up for his post-game interview with CSN.
IMG_2026

While Jaso did one for NESN.

IMG_2028

As customary for an A’s walk-off win, Josh Reddick came in with the pie.

IMG_2043

He brought it to Donaldson’s face.

IMG_2048

As JD braced himself for the hit.

IMG_2054

BOOM!

IMG_2055

Reddick slammed the pies into Josh Donaldson’s face!

IMG_2056

He was then given a towel to wipe it off with.

IMG_2065

Sure, I didn’t snag a ball, but it was a lot of fun out at the ballpark!

BALLHAWKING STATS:

  • 19th Game this Year (14th MLB Game)
  • 0 Balls at this Game
  • 14 balls in 14 MLB games this season = 1 Ball Per Game
  • 42 Lifetime MLB Baseballs
  • 93 Lifetime Baseballs

300x50_mlblogs_top100

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.

2012 in Review

Wow. 2012 was an crazy year for me, with so many fun experiences!

I want to thank everyone for taking the time to read my blog, and for all of the support that everyone has given me.

I would like to start of by saying that this is my 100th post at 7000 Coliseum Way!!!! Expect many more to come in 2013!

This entry will be complied of many things. IT IS VERY LONG: 3,659 Words to be exact.

I first want to present to you the 7000 Coliseum Way 2012 Annual report, as created by WordPress.com:

The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2012 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

600 people reached the top of Mt. Everest in 2012. This blog got about 8,300 views in 2012. If every person who reached the top of Mt. Everest viewed this blog, it would have taken 14 years to get that many views.

Click here to see the complete report.

Thank you to my top 5 commenters in 2012!
1) Max- Max commented 64 times this year! He was very supportive with Fan Packs, giving me tips, and always was ready to comment! You can follow him on Twitter here. Thanks Max!

2) Connor- He commented 32 times! Like Max, Connor always commented on the Fan Pack entries, giving me tips, and too has been very supportive all year! Thanks Connor!

3) Quinn Quinn was the first person to subscribe to this blog, and he always was commenting, supporting my ballhawking, as well as giving me tips for fan packs. You can follow him on Twitter here. Thanks Quinn!

4) Chris Chris is a fellow ballhawk, living in New York. He commented 27 times in 2012, and was very supporite with my ballhawking, as well as my Mail Time! posts, giving me tips for fan packs. You can follow him on Twitter here. Thanks Chris!

5) SpencerS- Spencer is a fellow Bay Area ballhawk. He commented 7 times in 2012! I’ve gotten the chance to meet him, and he is a great guy! He, too has given me lots of support with ballhawking in 2012. You can follow him on Twitter here. Thank You Spencer!

If you read this blog, then chance are, you know who Mateo Fischer is. He writes the MLBlog called Observing Baseball, and even thought he was not one of the top commementers, he was one of my greatest supporters in 2012 with the growing popularity of this blog. He wrote a review entry as well, and you can check it out by clicking here. You can click here to follow him on Twitter or here to LIKE Observing Baseball.

I would also like to thank Zack Hample, Zachary Weiss, Wayne Peck, Todd Cook, Shawn Bosman, Rick Gold, Malcolm MacMillan, Paul K, and McCovey Cove Dave for all of their support this year. Click on any of their names above to give them a follow on Twitter.

*Zack was the one that first got me into ballhawking, which I have to thank him for.

*Zachary Weiss has also been one of the most supportive people, giving me advice and support with ballhawking as well as blogging.

*Wayne writes the MLBlogs Collection of Baseball and A View From the Bullpen, and I was fortunate enough to meet him this past October. He has encouraged me trough my ballhawking and been a great friend to me this past year.

*Todd Cook writes a fantastic blog, called Cook and Sons Baseball Adventures. He gave me constant competition with the myGameBalls.com Photo Scavenger Hunt, which I appreciate. He also wrote a book called the Baseball Log, which I own. I highly recommend that you go give it a look!

*Shawn Bosman was my first co-host on The Nick Badders Show, and I thank him for doing that with me, as well as giving me the encouragement to continue my ballhawking.

*Rick Gold is a ballhawk who is also an editor for MLB.com. I met him in May, and he too, as given me an encouragement in my ballhawking. As a teen, he ballhawked at the Coliseum, which is a great connection!

*Malcolm, too has given me great advice and encouragement with my blog, as well as ballhawking, and given me some ideas for things to do at Minor League Stadiums.

*I haven’t know Paul for very long, but in the time I have known him, he has helped me tremendously. He was the first person to ever call in to The Nick Badders Show, which gave me extreme confidence. He has been one of the main supporters with my radio gig, which I am thankful for. He listens to every broadcast, and is always ready to give me feedback. He writes the MLBLog called A Piece of The Game, and wrote an entry reviewing his 2012 season as well. Click here to check it out.

*McCovey Cove Dave has also supported me in my ballhawking and been a great friend to me on Twitter. I’ll be trying my best to spend a game out in McCovey Cove sometime in 2013.

Most imporatntly, I need to thank my Dad (Dan), my Mom (Anne), and my Sister (Pascale). Without these three people, I wouldn’t be able to do what I do today. They are the ones who give me the support to continue my work at home. They are the ones that take me to the games, go to games with me, and allow me to ballhawk, even though I am not spending time with them. They are the reason that I am able to succeed, I cannot thank them enough.

From here, I will go over my entire year at 7000 Coliseum Way. I’ll share my month-by-month memories from blogging, to ballhawking, and mail!

I’ve gone back and read each post, and it amazes me how far my writing has come. In December of 2011, 1,000 words was a lot for me for one entry! Reaching July and August, some of my entries managed 3000 words!

In the month of January, I have a feeling a lot of you were not reading this blog. I had 75 views total in the month of January, that is an average of about 2 views each day.

On January 17th, I posted an entry about SOPA. I’ll be honest, I don’t know what I was thinking when I was writing that entry. If you want to check it out, you can right here.sopa12_hp

Shortly after that, on January 19th, I posted an entry with pictures of me, one at each of the 5 stadiums I had been to in my life. If you want to take a brief glance over that entry, it is here.pict2764

About a week later, on January 25th, I published an entry with LOTS of pictures that I had found from baseball games from 2005-2010, which you can read right here.
.img_5965

On January 27th, I published an entry about my expectations for the games I would go to in 2012, along with some information about A’s FanFest, an entry you can read here.649_hdr_fanfest

The following day, On January 28th, I posted a quick poll asking what A’s gear I should wear to FanFest, an entry that can be found here.

The very next day, on January 29th, my family and I were off to FanFest! We purchased some tickets, and had a complete blast! Check out that exciting entry here.
img_0112

1 Month. 75 views. 5 posts.

Moving on to February. I had 45 views, which is about 1 view a day.

I had only 1 post in February, on February 13th, I posted an entry with my projected A’s roster, which you can read here.

2 Months. 120 views. 6 Posts.

In March, I had 36 views for the month, which is barely an average of 1 view a day.

My first entry of the month was on March 25th. That is 40 days without an entry! I wrote a short bit on a few random things, an entry you can find here.413811_355468544497094_166699563373994_1020769_609678918_o

The very next day, on the 26th of the Month, I had another entry up, this one, I called “Pictures of the Day.” I simply shared a few pictures that I had found and enjoyed that were baseball-related. Check them out here.429283_349335911777024_166699563373994_1004959_1334377103_n

Then for my 3rd post in a row, and of the month, I shared some baseball videos that I had found and liked, titling it “Videos of the Day.” Check them out here.l

3 Months. 156 Views. 9 Posts.

Coming into April, we were already a quarter of the way through the year. In April, I had 227 views, which is about 8 views a day.

On April 5th, I attended Opening Day at PETCO Park in San Diego with my dad and unfortunately did not snag any balls. You can read all about that experience here.untitled-3

On April 6th, I posted an entry about the first 3 days of my Spring break, which I spent in Southern California with my leadership class from school. I was attending a conference about leadership in Costa Mesa, and it was a LOT of fun. You can read about it all here.wpid-2012-03-30_11-58-45_4622

Then, on April 13th, I went to Stockton to see the Ports take on the Modesto Nuts. There, I snagged my first ever MILB ball, and you can read the entry here.img_3089

On April 18th, I found a funny video that I wrote a QUICK entry about. You can see it here.

Finally, on April 22nd, I went to my first A’s game of the season, a game in which I snagged 3 balls, including my first lifetime foul ball. You can read all about that day here.img_1115

4 Months. 383 Views. 14 Posts.

In May, the views dipped a little, with 146 views, or about 5 views per day.

My first post of the month was on May 10th. I shared a quick meme that I made, then talked about my next game. You can find it here.575577_155853527874454_100003494239722_198277_947k452416_n

On May 11th, I saw the Tigers come in to Oakland, on Fleece blanket night. I snagged one ball and got the chance to meet Rick Gold. You can follow him on Twitter here and check out the entry about the game here. img_29321

Then, a week later, on May 18th, I attended my first game at John Thurman Field in Modesto. There, I got my 2nd lifetime Minor League ball. You can read about it all here. img_3833

Finally, 8 Days after that game, my family joined me for Michael Choice bobblehead night, for my second game of the year in Stockton, where I snagged my 3rd lifetime Minor League ball. You can read about it here.img_41501

5 Months. 529 Views. 18 Posts.

In June, the views picked up again with 286. That averages about 10 views a day.

My first post of the month was on June 13th, where I talked a little about Matt Cain’s perfect game. I think more of me was just writing it because the A’s had just played one of the best games of their season, plus R.A. Dickey one-hit the Rays, and MLB Network was focusing on the Giants. Don’t get me wrong, a perfect game is amazing, I just wish that other stories had been covered that night as well. Check it out here.595x416_mattcain_nohitter_9apjsvx5_a07rcbnj

Then, on June 20th, I went to MUG Root Beer Float Day at the Coliseum with my mom and sister. The A’s were playing the Dodgers, who I wanted to see, as they were using commemorative balls. However, I was unable to snag a ball that night. That being said, it was still an awesome day. Read about it here.img_0049

The very next day, on June 21st, I set out with my dad and friend Ryan for another A’s and Dodgers game, with hopes of getting a commemorative ball. Derek Norris was making his MLB Debut in this game. Even though I was shut out for the second day in a row, the game ended with a bang! Check it out here.img_0194

Finally, 3 days later, on June 24th, I was back at the Coliseum again, for more interleague baseball, this time between the A’s and Giants. I got shut out for the 3rd game in a row, however I did snag something cool, and the game once again ended with a bang! Read it all again here.img_0217

6 Months. 815 Views. 22 Posts.

July was when things started to take off for me. This blog had 667 in the month, which is 22 views a day.

After a week of Boy Scout Camp to start off the month, my first post was on July 12th, titled “How was Josh Reddick not an All Star?” In it, I talked about Reddick, the 2012 All Star Game, Kurt Suzuki, as well as BallhawkFest 2012, which I didn’t end up going to. If you want to check it out, click here.reddick

Then, on July 14th, my dad and I headed out to Municipal Stadium in San Jose to see the San Jose Giants take on the Visalia Rawhide. It was our first game in San Jose, and I snagged 6 balls at this game, which is the most I’ve ever snagged at a minor league game! Read all about that exciting day here.img_0516

On July 16th, I posted about the A’s recent success, with their magnificent sweep of the Twins. Read it here.20120716-131355

On July 20th, the A’s were 12-2 in July. I wrote a post about their incredible month, along with all of their Walk-Offs. Remember, there is an A in wAlk off! Check out that entry right here.563532_498776816802392_1320022965_n

The very next day, on July 21st, my mom and I were off to Oakland again, this time to see the A’s take on the Yankees. I got two balls in this game, and it was a lot of fun to sit in Section 149 for the first time! Read about that game here.20120721-222344

7 Months. 1,482 Views. 28 Posts.

August was a special month. There were 868 views, which is an average of 28 per day.

In the month of August, 7000 Coliseum Way was the 42nd most viewed MLBlogs Fan Blog! I wrote an entry all about it here.

On August 1st, my mom, sister and I headed out to the Coliseum for some weekday baseball between the A’s and Rays. I had won tickets on Twitter two days prior, so we got the tickets for free! I snagged 2 balls at this game, giving away one. If you want to read about that game, click here.
img_0608

Then, 4 days later, on August 5th, my whole family went to see the Blue Jays take on the A’s, with a Jemile Weeks drawstring backpack giveaway. I snagged one ball at this game, and you can click here to read about it.
img_1611

About 2 weeks later, on August 18th, my family joined my friend Sal and I for Scott Hatteberg bobblehead and Moneyball Movie night. It was a whole lot of fun, and I snagged 2 balls. Click here to read about it.
img_2511

2 days later, on August 20th, my mom and I got seats right behind the A’s dugout to see them take on the Twins. There were barely 10,000 people there, and I snagged 6 balls, giving away 2 of them. It was a lot of fun and I recommend that you click here to read all about it.
img_3719

Then, on August 26th, my dad, sister, and I were in Modesto for some more California League action. I snagged 3 balls, including my 3rd foul ball for the year, and got to play catch with my sister on the field! Read all about it right hereimg_6420
8 Months. 2,350 Views. 33 Posts.

The views just kept increasing. In September, 7000 Coliseum Way was viewed 1,124 times, averaging to 37 views each day.

On September 1st, my mom and I headed out to the Coliseum to see the Red Sox in town. I snagged 2 balls, one of them being a Fenway Park 100th anniversary ball! That entry can be read here.img_6690

I was getting a little behind on entries, so I published a quick post with a list of upcoming posts. If you want to, click here to read it.

The next day, on September 2nd, my Grandma and Uncle accompanied the rest of my family to the Coliseum for Breast Cancer Awareness Day against the Red Sox. I snagged 3 balls, including a toss-up from Yoenis Cespedes! Read about that day right here.img_7539

Later that week, on September 7th, my dad and I took a final trip to Modesto to see the San Jose Giants battle it out with the Nuts to move onto the next round of the California League playoffs. I snagged 3 balls in this game, it was a lot of fun, and you can click here to read it! img_8235

Then, a week later, on September 14th, my family was out to Oakland again, this time for sold out Star Wars fireworks night against the Orioles, where I snagged one ball. Click here to read it.img_0402

9 Months. 3,474 Views. 39 Posts.

Then, come October, the views shot up once again, with a total of 1,581 for the month. That is an average of 51 per day!

In the month of September, with 1,124 views, this blog was the 31st ranked blog, on the Latest Leaders list for the second month in a row! At the beginning of October, I wrote about that and a few other things. Check out that entry here.
20121005-201614

On October 1st, the A’s clinched a spot in the playoffs, and I wrote a quick entry about it here.246568_10151257433126873_1856080895_n

On October 10th, I was fortunate enough to attend the 3rd game of the ALDS, in Oakland, where I met Wayne Peck. You can check out his blog here and read the entry about the day here or check out his post on it here. Unfortuantely, I didn’t snag a ball, thought I had a great time!img_5630

On October 30th, I put together a post with all of my ballhawking stats for the 2012 season. Check all that out here.
20121023-165802

Finally, on October 31st, I published a quick entry about Josh Reddick winning the AL Gold Glove for RF and the pumpkin that my mom carved with the A’s AL West Champs logo. Check out that entry here.
20121030-221044

10 Months. 5,055 Views. 45 Posts.

November was more or less the same, with 1,528 views, I once again averaged 51 views each day, however I started to post more frequently.

My first post of the month was on November 7th. I gave my favorite pictures from FanFest as well as April and May. Check it all out here.
img_3860

I then took a poll on November 14th as to what kind of entries you guys were interested in me writing. Feel free to look at it here.

I then started receiving Fan Packs from teams. On November 16th and 17, I got Fan Packs from the Indians and White Sox, as well as the Diamondbacks and Rangers.
20121116-184359

I then left for a 5 day trip with my family, from November 19th-November 23rd to visit family in Omaha. You can read about days 1, 2, 3 ,4, or 5. I got the chance to catch up with family, visit Werner Park and TD Ameritrade Park, and hold my baby cousin for the first time!img_0234

When I got back, I continued to receive mail. I got packages from the Reds, Red Sox, and Astros.
20121124-145922

I also received packs from the Minnesota Timberwolves, Portland Trail Blazers, Baltimore Orioles, and Philadelphia 76ers. 20121129-191421

11 Months. 6,583 Views. 58 Posts.

In December, this blog 1,833 views, a new record, with an average of 59 views per day!

On December 1st, I got a fan pack from the Buffalo Bills and Frederick Keys.20121201-152608

Then, on Decmeber 4th, the MLBLogs Latest Leaders came out for October and November, and I was still in the top 50! 4 months in a row! You can check out my entry about it all here.20121204-131723

Over the next week, I got fan packs from the El Paso Diablos, Detroit Tigers, and Detroit Pistons.
20121205-10214120121201-152608

On the 8th of December, I posted an entry about my bobblehead collection, which you can check out here.20121208-122000

The next day, on December 9th, I blogged about my new radio show, The Nick Badders Show, on BlogTalkRadio, an entry you can find here.blogtalkradio_02

On December 11th, I wrote about the very cool envelope that I got from the Harrisburg Senators.20121211-073719

The next day, December 12th, I talked about the packages I received from the Vermont Lake Monsters and Atlanta Falcons.20121212-150822

On December 14th, I wrote about the packages I got from the Houston Rockets, Round Rock Express, and New York Yankees.20121214-020526

December 18th was the day I wrote about my best ever mail day! I received 5 envelopes, from the Benoit Snappers, Milwaukee Brewers, Kansas City Chiefs, Indianapolis Colts, and Richmond Flying Squirrels.20121217-191134

December 22nd was the date of my last Mail Time! post in 2012. I got an envelope from the Minnesota Twins and talked about my BlogTalkRadio shows, an entry that you can find here.20121222-194004

Finally, on December 29th, I went to a Stockton Thunder ECHL hockey game with my dad and had a blast! You can read all about that fun day here.
img_0564

That brings us to this entry. Entry #100 at 7000 Coliseum Way. It’s crazy to think how far I’ve come this year, with my blogging and ballhawking skills. In January, I never would have expected to be where I am today. I never would have thought I would have 27 envelopes stacked up in my bedroom from sports teams.

I NEVER in a million years would have expected to have the following that I do now. 43 Facebook Likes. 103 Twitter followers. 195 more Twitter followers. I want to again thank you all for your support with this blog, I could never do it without you.

AGAIN, Most imporatntly, I need to thank my Dad (Dan), my Mom (Anne), and my Sister (Pascale). Without these three people, I wouldn’t be able to do what I do today. They are the ones who give me the support to continue my work at home. They are the ones that take me to the games, go to games with me, and allow me to ballhawk, even though I am not spending time with them. They are the reason that I am able to succeed, I cannot thank them enough.

I think I have covered everything. If you think I have left something out, let me know in the comment section down below.

Thank You for having the patience to read this LONG entry, and stay tuned for many more entries in the new year.

happy-new-year-13

12 Months. 8,416 Views. 72 Posts.

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.

Even More Mail!

On Friday, as I mentioned in my last entry, when I got home, I found another fan pack waiting for me. On Saturday, I got two more fan packs in the mail, from the Reds and Red Sox.

The first one was courtesy of the Houston Astros.

Old logo. Yikes! The envelope was very thin, so I knew things were not looking good.

The first thing I found inside was a 2012 pocket schedule.

2012… ok then… The next item was a sticker with their *OLD* logo

The last item was a oversized player card with the *OLD* logo, featuring JA Happ.

This fan pack makes the Indians look amazing.

Chances are, I will be sending them another email during baseball season, perhaps in hopes of stuff with the new logo.

On Saturday, like I mentioned earlier, I received two envelopes in the mail. I decided to open the bigger one first. It was from the Reds

I first pulled out a letter from the Reds

Followed by a Jay Bruce RedsFest baseball card

After that, I found a Reds decal that says “Go Reds!” and has an alternate logo

I then found two Reds Stickers

The next thing I pulled out was two envelopes wrapped in a Reds rally towel

How cool is that?

Here is the first envelope

I opened it up to find this

Really neat!

There was also David Concepcion envelope

With a print inside

I would have to say in my opinion, the Reds have sent the best stuff so far!

The next envelope I had was from the Boston Red Sox

I first pulled out a letter

Followed by a Red Sox socks logo sticker

And Fenway Park 100 Years logo sticker

I then found a Franklin Morales signed photo

The next item I pulled out was a red wristband that says Red Sox Nation on the side

The final item I pulled out was the coolest

Fenway Park dirt (Technically clay)

As I write this, my mom is telling me to write the fact that she is very jealous. She grew up in the Boston area going to Red Sox games with her dad. I have a strange feeling she may be sending an email of her own to the Red Sox…

So, I have gotten some pretty cool stuff so far!

Here is another updated list of team replies:
MLB Teams:
Astros- ARRIVED
Blue Jays– I need to send a self-addressed, stamped envelope
Braves- Send them a Postcard
Cubs- Send them a Postcard
Diamondbacks- ARRIVED
Giants- Emailed me a PDF Fan pack
Indians– Fan pack sent out to mail- ARRIVED
Padres- Unable to fulfill Request
Phillies- Postal request
Rangers- Donation needed… $5 Donation made….ARRIVED
Red Sox- ARRIVED
Reds- ARRIVED
Tigers- No giveaways, but will mail fan pack
Twins- Send Postcard from hometown
White Sox- ARRIVED
Yankees- Send Postcard

I have received 7 fan packs so far. Which ones do I like the most and least? In order from best to worst:
1) Reds
2) White Sox
3) Red Sox
4) Rangers
5) Diamondbacks
6) Indians
7) Astros

Let me know which you think are the best and worst in the comments!

So… in my opinion… the bigger the package is, the better! I will post entries whenever I get a new package, so check back often!

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.

9/2/12 at the Oakland Coliseum

First of all, I would like to apologize. This entry is long overdue and much shorter than usual with a lot less pictures.

We left the house at 8:45 to get my mom, sister, and I to BART around 9. We got to the Coliseum close to 10.

I wanted to get in line at gate MM, but my mom wanted us to get in line at C, where there was no line. I walked around the Coliseum once with my sister, and she took some pictures along the way.

When we got back, I played catch with my sister for 15 or so minutes, as there was still nobody in line. Once we both had made a few errant throws, I decided to walk around once more.

This is random, but as we were walking around, we saw a bunch of cones set up in the parking lot, along with a few cars.

Turns out if you test drove a car, you got 2 free A’s tickets or something like that.

When I got back, the line had grown to 50 or so people, and right next to my mom and sister was fellow Bay Area ballhawk Spencer Sanborn!

We talked about ballhawking and stuff for the most part, until the gates opened, and at that point, we went our separate ways.

Oh, I forgot to mention that my grandmother and uncle would be joining us for this game!

They arrived 15 or so minutes before the gates opened, and got in the handicapped line with my dad. My grandmother had just had surgery on her eye a few weeks ago, and my Uncle is in a wheelchair, so my dad wanted to make sure that they got into the Coliseum okay.

Well, I raced inside, and after grabbing my giveaway “Pink and white A’s baseball umbrella” to celebrate Breast Cancer Awareness Day, I put on my Red Sox hat and shirt and headed over to the Sox bullpen, in hopes of snagging another commemorative ball.

Spencer got there a little bit before I did, and he started chatting up the ushers a little, before heading over to the right field line. I stayed behind the bullpen area, focusing on Clay Buchholz, who was woking on a bullpen session at the time. When he finished, I called out to him, and he tossed me ball #1 on the day.

The day was off to a good start. I had my eye on a few of the Red Sox pitchers playing catch, but was unable to come up with a ball.

Spencer broke out his giant glove and snagged his one and only ball on the day a few minutes after I got ball #1.

I wasn’t able to snag any balls before the Red Sox cleared the field, so I changed into my A’s gear and went over to where our seats were for the game to say hi to my family.

There were a lot of A’s players signing autographs when I got to our seats

but I was focused on Grant Balfour playing catch down the line.

He ended up throwing the ball to someone else, and at that point, it was roughly 12:15.

And of course, as always, while I was busy snagging balls, my dad was taking some amazing pictures by the A’s bullpen.

There were 45 minutes to game time, and I decided to go spend some quality time with my Grandmother and Uncle, who were sitting in the wheelchair accessible area.

I chatted with them for 10 or so minutes before heading off in search of some food.

I figured that I would go get a sandwich from the Deli, but found an $8 slice of “Gourmet” pizza. It was absolutely amazing. And of course, I failed to get a picture.

I grabbed a lemonade and headed back to our seats.

I talked with my mom for a few minutes before noticing Derek Norris warming up with Chip Hale in the outfield, rather than their regular spot buy the wall.

Shortly thereafter, Brett Anderson came out to warm up, rocking his Nike Elite socks

Because it was Breast Cancer Awareness day, there was a HUGE Parade on the field with breast cancer survivors. They walked out from center field

And they formed a ribbon shape on the field

Then, A’s wives released doves into the sky

While the whole ceremony was going on, players continued to come onto the field and warm up

Anderson finished his warm-up tosses shortly before the ceermony concluded, and the A’s relievers had their special handshake going

At 1:05, the A’s took the field. Yoenis Cespdes warmed up by playing catch with the ball boy

And tossed me the ball when he was done.

My 2nd ball on the day!

During the game, there were no foul balls that came close to me.

This was my view for the game

20120929-192155.jpg
Brett Anderson pitched very well

Despite a home run in the first inning

Seth Smith countered with a home run of his own

Josh Donaldson had a good game as well

Ryan Cook warmed up in the bullpen at some point during the game

Along with Sean Doolittle

While Brett Anderson continued his domination

Sometime around the 7th inning, I asked my dad if he would be willing to go and get my an ice cream helmet, because I had overheard someone mentioning that there were special ones for this game. Turns out, they had pink helmets in honor of BCA day!

The Kettle Corn man at the Coliseum is the BEST vendor in baseball. I don’t care what anyone else says, he is

Grant Balfour started to get loose in the bullpen around the 8th inning

When Balfour came in, 149 went into full ragefest

The Ausie came in, shutting down the Red Sox

And it was a win for the A’s!

Once the final out was recorded, I headed over to the bullpen to see if I could get any more balls. I then saw a ball wedged between the bullpen roof and phone for my 3rd and final ball on the day.

I had a great time with my family and getting a chance to share some great A’s baseball with my uncle and Grandmother!

BALLHAWKING STATS:
• 3 balls at this game
• 22 balls in 13 Major League games this season = 1.692 balls per game.
• 34 balls in 18 baseball games this season = 1.888 balls per game.
• 27 Lifetime Major League baseballs
• 39 total balls
• 7 consecutive games in Oakland with at least 1 ball
• 9 consecutive games with at least 1 ball
• 5 consecutive games with at least 2 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.

9/1/12 at the Oakland Coliseum

Wow. That’s all I can say. I completely lost track of time. It was a 6:05 game with the gates opening at 4. I wanted to be there at 3, do that would mean leaving at 2.

Around 2:40, I honestly thought it was 1:40. I told my dad that I wanted I catch the 2:20 BART train to get my mom and I to the Coliseum around 3.

My dad told me it was almost 3 and I will be completely honest with you, I flipped out. The gates were going to open in just over and hour and I was still at home.

We jumped in the car and just missed the 3:00 train by about 4 minutes.

The train left around 3:20 and we arrived at the Coliseum around 3:50.

This was not going to be a good day.

I almost considered turning around multiple times, but I knew that I needed to just deal with it and go with the flow.

I ran from the train to the BART ramp and down to check gate B. It wasn’t open, so I ran up to gate MM and jumped in line there.

15 people? And it was 10 minutes until the gates opened? Hell. Yes. My mom showed up a minute later, and quickly purchased 2 bleacher seats.

She joined me in line, along with the 149 guys. I had a better feeling about this game!

When we got inside, I ran straight for the RF bleachers. I had to run through the concourse and down 3 flights of stairs, but I got there fairly quickly.

I set my stuff down in the 1st row of section 148. I pulled out my glove and saw that the A’s were taking BP.

The only ball that came close to me during A’s BP was hit 3 rows behind me and I should have had it. It was hit DIRECTLY at me, and I figured it would be right behind me. It bounced 3 rows behind me and I reached my glove to try and get it when it bounced back, but It just cleared my glove and a guy with a baby under his arm barehanded it.

The A’s portion of BP ended 5 minutes later.

I took off my A’s jersey, and headed over to where the Red Sox were playing catch.

2 players that stood out to me were Andrew Bailey and Craig Breslow, both former Athletics.

The Sox started hitting 5 minutes after I got to the RF line.

There was one ball that I had my eye on

I knew for sure it was a Fenway Park 100th anniversary commemorative ball, and I really was hoping to snag one, but when a Red Sox coach went to grab it, and when I called out for it, he ignored me.

When Andrew Bailey and Craig Breslow were done throwing, I asked Andrew Bailey for my first ball of the day.

Not commemorative. But I was still positive. I still had seen a lot of Fenway Park balls being used

The Sox were hitting ball all over the field that were not being fielded. If I had a retrieval device, I would have had at least 10 balls. But I didn’t, so I didn’t.

Then, I saw another commemorative ball in the outfield

After I got the ball from Bailey, I crouched down to take off my A’s hat and put on my Red Sox hat.

There was a guy who yelled at me for doing it, and I just ignored him.

A few minutes later, I noticed Craig Breslow coming over to pick up a ball on the warning track. I called put to him and he tossed me the ball.

I had seen him turn the ball over in his hand before tossing it to me. At first, I thought nothing of it, assuming he was making sure it wasn’t commemorative. I went to put it in my backpack, before checking the ball to see if it had the Fenway Park logo.

YES! My day was complete! I snagged a Fenway Park ball.

Like, literally, I could go home now if I wanted to. I wanted to snag just one commemorative ball, and from what I had heard, they didn’t have them in the bullpen, so I knew I would have to get a ball that had been hit.

So, do you remember the guy who had yelled at me earlier? When I called out for the ball, he yelled “NO! THAT GUY ALREADY HAS ONE!” Like before, I just ignored him. I showed him the logo, so that he knew why I wanted to try to get a ball. He seemed really pissed at me.

I tried to stay away from him, because I seemed to be getting on his nerves.

Batting practice ended just before 5, close to an hour after after the gates had opened.

I was somewhat disappointed with 2 balls, and there was one more ball I came relatively close to.

I was close to the dugout, because I knew BP would be over soon, and there was a ball hit to my right. I knew I would get it, so I ran through the rows, and it bounced softly in the section to my right. I ran to grab it, but so did that other guy.

He got his glove on the *Commemorative* ball, and at the same time my hand landed on his glove. He yelled at me to get my hands off him and that the ball was for him.

I started to walk away, but I stopped when I heard him yelling profanities at me. I just went to go tell the ushers, when he told me that he never wanted to see me chasing balls again. Apparently, I was a grown man who was stealing balls from little kids.

Huh? I was more confused than I had been in a long time. 1) I’m 14. 2) The ball was hit, not thrown. 3) If I’m a “Grown Man” and not allowed to catch balls, then why do you have 5?

It turns out that he had been catching balls for his kids, because they didn’t bring their gloves, and I’m fine with him trying to catch balls, but I wish he had been a little more mellow or something like that.

I guess I don’t have the right to try to get balls from myself? I was getting more and more confused.

Over the course of BP, he had gotten 5 balls for his kids. BTW, for future reference, all three of them were decked out from head to toe in Giants gear.

I explained to the guy that I write a blog, where I talk about my adventures at stadiums, and attempting to snag balls. I gave him my contact card, with my blog’s address on it, and walked away. I did not want to deal with him any more.

I don’t need to get into any situations like this.

I headed over to the Red Sox dugout, hoping to get a ball from someone.

I wasn’t able to get anything, so I headed over to the A’s bullpen, where I saw a few ball lying around.

I figured my best option would be to ask the ball boy for a ball. I got there, and when I did, he headed into the stands to talk to someone. She had an A’s jersey on that had a 1 on the back and said BATBOY KEVIN. I would assume that it was his girlfriend.

When he went back onto the field, I asked him for the ball, but he had already promised it to someone else.

At this point in the evening, it was 5:20, so I headed back to the bleachers, so that my mom could do out and get herself something to eat.

Soon enough, players came out onto the field to start warming up.

I would have gone over to the Red Sox bullpen, but the ushers never let me stay there longer than 3 minutes.

There was a special promotion going on for this game, called Weekend at Bernie’s. I hope you all know the back-story behind the promotion…

No? Ok. I would hope you know about the whole Bernie-ing thing, so I won’t go over that, comment down below if you would like me to explain it, and I shall add it in.

In 1989, a movie came out called Weekend at Bernie’s, staring Terry Kiser as Bernie. The Bernie became popular in Oakland, and not only did Brandon Inge put Moving like Bernie as his walk-up song, but so Coco Crisp now uses the song Bernie Lean as his walkup song.

So I hope this gives you a sense of the promotion. The first 2,000 fans to enter the stadium were given these “Bernie Masks”

And Terry Kiser threw out the first pitch. And of course, he did some dancing on the mound.

Once he had thrown the pitch, he jumped into the arms of Coco Crisp and Josh Reddick, as Brandon Inge watched on.

Time to play ball!

Josh Reddick took his place in right field

And Coco took his spot in center

In the top of the 1st, Coco Crisp came to bat. Guess what?

Lead off home run!

From our seats, my mom was able to get some awesome pictures!

In the 2nd inning, when Brandon Inge was in his first at-bat off of the DL, it was time to bernie!

And in the top of the 4th, Brandon Inge had to come out of the game. He re-aggravated his shoulder injury in the 3rd inning, making a throw. His season was unfortunately over.

A.J. Griffin was the starting pitcher for the A’s, and he was dealing!

His first 4 2/3 innings were perfect.
Jarrod Saltalamacchia stepped to the plate, and bunted for a single. Um… Stay classy, Jarrod.

He was booed for the rest of the game. Along, of curse, wit Cody Ross. If you are a right fielder in Oakland, you’re going to have a bad time. The RF bleachers are very creative. Very. Cody Ross completely missed a fly ball in foul territory early in the game. Then, he misplayed another ball in right field, crashing against the wall in complete failure, prompting the training staff to come out

And don’t worry; in the top of the 6th, the Red Sox got 2 real hits.

My view for the game was really fantastic, it is hard to beat sitting in the right field bleachers for a game!

In the 7th inning, Terry Kiser, Kara (The A’s in-game host), and the two guys behind the Bernie Lean music video came out to the right field bleachers.

This is what had caught my attention originally

Terry took a picture of the right field bleachers and then hosted a bernie dance-off, which was won by a 149 regular.

The two guys from the Bernie Lean Music video actually sat in the row behind me, in section 149. I chatted up one of the guys for a little bit, before he gave me a sheet with a QP code for a free download of the song

And in the top of the 9th inning, BoMel was on the top step of the dugout, like he always is, waiting for the A’s to win their 8th consecutive game.

That is about it. I had a great time, and didn’t really come close to any home run balls, but it was still a lot of fun!

And it turns out, when I got home and was watching the game on the DVR, I saw myself twice in the RF Bleachers.

The first time was right after Coco Crisp hit his leadoff home run, it showed me doing the Bernie. I took a picture of the TV right before I started to Bernie

And in the top of the 9th, the broadcast showed me again in the RF bleachers

Overall, I wasn’t expecting a good day, but hey, look what happened! It was an awesome day with my mom!

BALLHAWKING STATS:
• 2 balls at this game (1 pictured because I never got a picture of the two balls together)
• 19 balls in 12 Major League games this season = 1.583 balls per game.
• 31 balls in 17 baseball games this season = 1.824 balls per game.
• 24 Lifetime Major League baseballs
• 36 total balls
• 6 consecutive games in Oakland with at least 1 ball
• 8 consecutive games with at least 1 ball
• 4 consecutive games with at least 2 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.