Saw two MLB games this past weekend, while at (ahem) the APSA meetings.
1. Phillies v. Braves, at the Phillies new ballpark. Very nice. We had good seats, and excellent company, six of us. Nice day. And, got to see Ryan Howard, the Philly nonpareil, hit THREE homers. First one was a line drive, the second a moon shot that traveled at least 450 feet before coming down in a far concourse in the bullpen in dead center, and the last something in between, still a tremendous homer.
Since I am becoming something of conniseur of "fan on the field" incidents (see this description, my favorite of all time fan on the field story), I should relate what happened next.
Ryan Howard comes up for his fourth at bat. A drunk fan, thickly built from years of Pat's, jumps onto the field, runs up near Howard from the third base side, and falls to his knees. Begins doing the full prostration bow, over and over. Police and security men converge from three sides. Obeisance man actually puts one hand behind back to be cuffed, and continues bowing routine with other hand for another few seconds. The guy, as far as I can tell, was not beaten. But, in contrast to the ChiSox incident, this guy did not put moves on security guys in the outfield, WHLE CARRYING A BEER, and injure one of them.
Anyway, Howard is clearly undone by this incident, and can only manage a line smash single. His day: 4-4, 13 total bases, 5 RBI, three runs scored.
Philllies are comfortably ahead, 6-3. But, suddenly, the Braves score 2 in the eigth, and 4 in the top of the ninth inning! Phillies down 7-6, great start by Moyer down the toidie.
Then, equally suddenly, Phillies come back! Score two in the bottom of the ninth to come back and win! As fine a ballgame, with fine company (even Shughie was there! And, always nice to see Renan...) on a fine day in a fine ballpark, as one could want. And Jimmy Rollins is an incredible athlete.
(I had not realized this, until I read the game wrap: Ortiz at one point got nine outs on 15 pitches. That is pitching at its finest. The perfect inning is not nine strikes. The perfect inning is three grounders. I wish I could convince my Carolina Cardinals that this is true. Hats off to Ortiz. Best pitching performance I have seen in person since I watched another Phillie, Steve Carlton, 2-hit my Cards back in 1983 at old Busch).
2. Next day, I went to another day game down in DC (at RFK, Nats v. Cards) with an old friend I hadn't seen in forever. Nats starter takes no hitter into the ninth, but Cards break it up. Third batter in the ninth is the great Pujols, who absolutely creams a curve ball into the upper deck in left center. Nats win it, though. Beautiful. Marquis pitched very well, but Ortiz deserved to win. We had great seats, right behind third base. Scott Rolen is an enormous man.
Oh, and did I mention I was at the APSA meetings? Actually went to the business meeting, and saw Robert Axelrod "installed" as the new Jefe Maximo. I'm not sure why, but going to the business meeting, which was brief, was really pretty fun. In spite of the outrageous dues and meeting registration (which together total $400 for me this year!), I have to admit I like APSA. Next year: Chicago! Should be an orgy of baseball, assuming the (a) Pale Hose, (b) Cubs (ick!) or (c) Brewers are home that weekend.
UPDATE: I am apparently not becoming a connoiseur of spellings of connoiseur, however.