JD’s Ballpark Tour… an FAQ?

Between the Bases: An FAQ!

Welcome back to the Chavez Chronicles, ladies and gentlemen. Upon finishing this unforgettable journey through all the ballparks, I’ve been approached with a plethora of questions from people I have just met and friends alike. I thought about making this a separate page, but I thought a post now would be more appropriate given that some of these questions will be answered next month. The majority of questions were asked before the final leg of my travels through the Midwest. I thought I would write a quick post and address some of those questions here.

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*Q: What is your favorite ballpark that you’ve visited?

*A: At the moment, I don’t have a singular favorite, even making a top 3 or 4 is tough. I will think about this more and make a post with my rankings of the 30 current MLB parks soon.

*Q: What is your least favorite ballpark?

*A: Same as above, but I have a bottom two, and it will surprise many.

*Q: What foods do you recommend the most?

*A: I believe in getting the most unique food items that you wouldn’t find anywhere else. In the north, poutine is always a recommendation. In the Midwest, barbecue is excellent. Perhaps I will make just a post about food in the coming weeks.

*Q: So… what’s next?

*A: Get back to hockey and math! Southern California welcomes the AHL to the hockey landscape, and that will take up some of my time. Aside from that, I have a great idea of what I want to do on my next grand “baseball” adventure. However, I won’t reveal that yet…

*Q: How do you find great deals on flights/cars?

*A: First off, I have a frequent flier card with Flying Blue (KLM) and they have been wonderful in the five years I’ve been with them. Delta has typically great service for a major airline, so I recommend using them for frequent flier miles. During this trip, I’ve received two free flights and I’m close to a third one. Also, using Hertz frequently not only builds up status, but renting with Hertz yields frequent flier miles for Delta/Flying Blue. I’ve gotten one free car rental so far, and may get a second. Sticking with a good company is an excellent way to not only get great deals on flights and cars, but get free flights and car rentals. Huzzah!

*Q: How in the world did you keep costs down and stay within a budget?

*A: As previously mentioned, getting free flights and car rentals help. Also, I’ve had several friends offer up their rooms for days on end. Without them, I couldn’t have finished this trip. Also, I got many free tickets throughout this trip, as well as some insider visits. The kindness of many helped keep costs down, and was a huge factor in me finishing this trip. So my advice is this… make friends, make lots of friends around the country (and Canada)!

 

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*Q: Dude, your adventures sound awesome! Can we hang with you?

*A: Sure! I always welcome guests to watch games with me! Throughout this trip, I have had some great friends and guests watch games besides me, and it’s always a blast shooting the breeze and have some great baseball talk. Plus, whenever I’m around friends, good things tend to happen and the good luck REALLY comes out. Ask any of those guys on the pictures… fun times are had by all, and unforgettable memories are made!

Finally, I want to address one thing that hasn’t been asked much, and that’s why I haven’t posted much lately. Well, real life happens and it keeps me busy! Also, I’ve still been going to games, and getting back to my regular routine of working most of the week. Additionally, I’ve been contributing to the podcast and celebrating my birthday. With that said, I have already written the next post after this, so expect two or three blog posts this week alone. Thanks again for your support, please keep reading, and I will see you at the ballpark!

 

-JD

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On the Brink…

Magic Number = 1

That’s it. One. A Diamondbacks loss or a Dodgers win will secure a party-like atmosphere at Chavez Ravine not seen since the days of Steve Finley and Lima Time. But, it seems different this time. Los Angeles has some decent pitching, and they certainly have the bat power. It seems like there is renewed hope around the stadium that we haven’t seen in a while, and I can only come up with one reason why this is.

Manny.

Ever since he made his way to Los Angeles from Boston, it has been like a whole new team. A team that I am excited to watch. He gives the fans a reason to wear those funny-looking wigs with the dreadlocks (I will admit, however, that the Dodgers bandana he wears is pretty cool looking). Heck, he’s had more curtain calls in his fifty games as a Dodger than probably all the other Dodger hitters put together this season! That is pretty astounding, isn’t it? 53 RBIs already, and he is showing no signs of stopping. Manny is making Dodger fans believe again, and I truly believe that this team could erase some ghosts of playoff past and win more than one game in a playoff series. In fact, I think they could make the World Series. I didn’t say they will, I said they could. Think about it.

The Cubs are forever doomed to be cursed… at least until 2015. 😉  (100 points if you get that reference)

The Phillies have had some good offensive power all season long, but their pitching is very suspect. In fact, who would be their #1 starter, or even their #2 starter? The only thing that scares me is Brad Lidge, who hasn’t blown a save yet this season. But who knows? His postseason memories of Albert Pujols blasting that home run against the Astros may still haunt him all these years later. (I wonder if he still has nightmares about that?)

The Mets? With Pedro Martinez struggling, and no solid bullpen support with Billy Wagner out, they could easily be swept… assuming they make the playoffs.

Then there is the wild card, the Brewers. I honestly do not know what to expect from them. There are two versions of this team, and you never know which team will show up to the ballpark. Fear C. C. Sabathia.

But this is all looking ahead, of course. Hopefully, the Dodgers can clinch tomorrow, and what a happy day it will be! Again, I’ll be at the ballpark early, so I hope to see some fellow MLBloggers there! For now…

 

100_6461.JPGThink Blue!
JD