CATCHING UP IN PHILLY
Hello sports fans! I brought my computer to the ballpark today to catch you up on all of my excellent adventures and wonderful photos from Philadelphia…
Although it wasn’t much of a game last night, the ballpark was bursting at the seams, and the place literally felt like it was bouncing. It’ll be nice when that kind of excitement and electricity finally takes place at Great American Ball Park.
The weather is a lot nicer today than it was yesterday. Currently it’s about 10 degrees warmer than it was 24 hours ago.
When I got to the park yesterday, one of my first duties was to help put labels on the seats of the auxiliary pressbox. The auxiliary pressbox, or “aux box,” is a section where the overflow media is stationed. There’s only so much room in the regular pressbox, so the ballpark provides a spot for the extra media, usually a sectioned-off area of seats outside (see pic).
After those duties were over, my colleague Bill Gluvna and I met up with Major League Baseball’s Chuck Torres to go over our assignments for the game. Chuck introduced us to some of the media members we’d be working with, including the broadcasters from TBS and ESPN Radio. TBS and ESPN Radio are the exclusive rightsholders for the League Championship Series, so they get some privileges that other media outlets don’t…and that’s kind of where I come in, to assist with them and make sure they have their media requests fulfilled.
During the game’s 3rd inning, we had orders to go to the dugouts to help make sure that the in-game interviews went as planned. That was a cool experience. Bill and I were actually at the foot of the dugout steps that lead inside to the clubhouses, trying to stay warm and out of the way. While awaiting the last out of the half inning on the LA side, we got word that the producers with TBS decided to cancel the Joe Torre in-game interview, probably due to the fact that the game was getting a little out of hand. While we were over there, I got a chance to say hello to former Red Juan Castro who’s now a reserve player with Los Angeles.
It’s kind of surreal being that close to the action during a playoff game. After the Torre cancelation, Bill and I headed over to the Phillies side where the scene was a lot happier. Charlie Manuel doesn’t like to do the in-game thing, so it fell to coach Davey Lopes.
After the Lopes interview went off without a hitch, it was time to go back upstairs to await the middle of the 8th inning. Following a few more Phillies’ touchdowns, it was time to prepare for our grand finale!
At the end of the 8th inning, Chuck rounded up the media according to their level of “importance.” TBS, ESPN Radio, MLB Productions and XM/Sirius Satellite radio are the first allowed on the field for post-game on-field interviews, so they headed up a single-file line that began just inside the field-entrance tunnel. Immediately after the final out, they’re the ones running out on the field with microphones, tape recorders and cameras. Once that happens, Chuck and Bill and I make our way to the winning side of the diamond to procure the players whom the post-game media contingency has requested to interview. My guy last night was Shane Victorino (for the 3rd time in 3 Phillies’ NLCS games that I’ve worked). Bill grabbed Jayson Werth and Chuck got Cliff Lee. Everything worked out as planned and another NLCS game was in the books…time to do it all again tonight!
Here are a few random photos for you from Philly…
Lopes is a pretty popular dude. Here he is again greeting Hall of Famer Cal Ripken.
Here are my partners in crime during the NLCS (from left): John Steinmiller, Bennett Shields and Bill Gluvna. (Shields is as fanatical about The Big Lebowski as I am, so we’ve been quoting the movie frequently).
Today I had my 3rd Philly cheesesteak sandwich in as many days…Chuck, Bill, Lydia Panayotidis and I ventured to South Philly to have our pick between rival steak shops Geno’s and Pat’s. Both places are literally right across the street from each other. Since Pat’s offers “wiz” (Cheese Wiz) and Geno’s doesn’t, I went with Pat’s. The rest of the group chose Geno’s. Chuck nearly went with both but wisely chickened out…
From Media Relations Director Rob Butcher:
This Thursday, October 23rd, Bronson Arroyo and his friend Jamie Spencer will be doing a concert at the Coney Island Drive Inn in Brookville, FL to raise money for cancer research, education and survivor programs. Even if you aren’t in Florida, you can still take part in this worthy cause by participating in the raffle. Prizes include personal experiences with Bronson such as a 1 hour pitching lesson, lunch, signed photos and jerseys, golf and more. You do not need to be present to win. Only 500 tickets will be sold. To find out more and to purchase tickets visit: http://walkingoffcancer.com/
I’ve been getting Reds pumpkin photos! Thank you and keep them coming! I’ll post a few of the good ones tomorrow…But for now, it’s game time!