A Long Homestand

Today is the first game of a 10 game homestand.  I’m already feeling tired.  The first three games have different starting times.  Today is the usual 7:10 starting time but tomorrow the game will start at 4:15 probably to accommodate the 4th of July fireworks.  My sister won 4 tickets to the game via a local radio station.  It should be interesting.  Sunday’s game will begin at 1:10 probably because it won’t be televised on ESPN and because it is picture day.  

Every year the Dodgers set aside a day where fans can get pictures with their favorite players.  They set up fences and have some of the Dodgers walk around so fans can get close and get themselves immortalized on their cameras or phones with their faves.  It sounds nice but it can get brutal.  It’s particularly difficult to get close to players like Kershaw, Puig, Ethier or Joc.  Some fans take the opportunity to ask for autographs which slows the process.  Usually the day is extremely hot so the pictures turn out with everyone looking hot and sweaty.  I always go and hope that I get lucky.  This year none of my friends will be there so I guess I’ll be taking selfies.  You all know that I am pretty bad at that unless the player himself takes the selfies for me.  My two favorite selfies are the ones with Mike Bolsinger and Andre Ethier.  Andre is super nice and takes the selfies for me.  Mike knows how to get very close so the selfies look very intimate.  My least favorite pictures are with the very tall players.  I always look like I am standing in a hole.  Pictures with Scott Van Slyke and Brandon McCarthy are pretty crazy looking.  I bought a Hello Kitty selfie stick but I’m afraid that they might take it away from me.  The ushers have reassured me that they are not illegal at Dodger Stadium but rules change constantly there.  I usually don’t have problems getting pictures on regular game days, especially when I am on the field but certain players I don’t even ask, for example, Clayton Kershaw and Zack Greinke.  I don’t have qualms asking Clayton on picture day if I can get close and Zack may not even be there.  Mike Bolsinger pitches on that day so he may not be there.  However, he is a different kind of pitcher on his starting day.  He will be sitting in the dugout signing autographs and taking pictures, something that I have never seen any other pitcher doing.  He is very fan friendly and nice to everyone. It may be his relaxed manner that helps his pitching.

The starting pitcher today will be Clayton Kershaw.  It’s a little weird that he is on a 3 game losing streak.  He has not pitched badly but has not gotten any run support.  No matter how the numbers look, Clayton is still the best pitcher in baseball.  The numbers don’t show that.  I am in awe of Clayton.  Besides what he does in baseball, he is a good person.  He is involved in charity work and has his own organization called Kershaw’s Challenge. Whenever I see him, I say hi to him. He always takes the time to answer me with “Hi, how’s it going?”  He never is in such a hurry he doesn’t respond.  

It is almost at the halfway mark of the baseball season.  The Dodgers are still in first place, 3 games ahead of the Giants.  The Dodgers usually do well at home so I hope they can continue.  They play 10 games without a day off. I know by the end of a long homestand such as this one, I feel exhausted by the last game, and I’m just sitting and watching.

I’m sad that they DFA’d Brandon League.  I suppose they had to make room on the 40 man roster with all their signings in the last couple of days.  I always liked Brandon and I’ll miss him.  It would have been better, in my opinion, to give him a chance to pitch and then DFA him if he doesn’t do well.  The bullpen has been hot and cold, many times being the reason the Dodgers lose during close games.  Brandon has the experience which is a definite plus.

The All Star team will be announced on Sunday.  I don’t take much stock in those picked to play.  It’s a popularity contest, not based on the best players.  Who can deny that Joc Pederson is probably the best center in the National League but he may not even make the cut.  How can they leave out the steady Adrian Gonzales?  And if the best pitcher in baseball, Clayton Kershaw doesn’t make the team, it will be a mockery.  I also think that Zack Greinke has earned a place.  He has had an amazing season.   But I’m sure we will see the same popular players put there by their hometown fans.  It’s puzzling that the Dodgers, who have a huge fan base and have the record of the most attendance in a baseball stadium, never have many players on the All Star team.  

The next three days will be exciting:  Clayton pitching today, Zack pitching on 4th of July, and Mike Bolsinger pitching on Sunday.  Mike had a touch of the stomach flu the last game he pitched on June 30. He tried to fight his way through and pitched awesomely well but the pain became too much.  The Dodgers still were able to win the game, Mike leaving with the score 4-0 although the bullpen allowed 4 runs.  It was a great road trip with the Dodgers winning 6 out of 10 games, keeping first place in the National League West.

Thanks for stopping by.  I’ll be posting more since the next 10 games will be home games.  I appreciate everyone who takes the time to read my blog.  GO DODGERS!!!!!


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